In 1873, Nietzsche began to accumulate notes that would be posthumously published as Philosophy in the Tragic Age of the Greeks . Between 1873 and 1876, he published four separate long essays: " David Strauss : the Confessor and the Writer", "On the Use and Abuse of History for Life", "Schopenhauer as Educator" and "Richard Wagner in Bayreuth". These four later appeared in a collected edition under the title Untimely Meditations . The essays shared the orientation of a cultural critique, challenging the developing German culture along lines suggested by Schopenhauer and Wagner. During this time, in the circle of the Wagners, Nietzsche met Malwida von Meysenbug and Hans von Bülow , and also began a friendship with Paul Rée , who in 1876 influenced him into dismissing the pessimism in his early writings. However, he was deeply disappointed by the Bayreuth Festival of 1876, where the banality of the shows and baseness of the public repelled him. He was also alienated by Wagner's championing of "German culture", which Nietzsche felt a contradiction in terms, as well as by Wagner's celebration of his fame among the German public. All this contributed to Nietzsche's subsequent decision to distance himself from Wagner.
Nietzsche predicts that the death of God will bring with it the rejection of the belief in a universal moral law, which in turn will cause existential nihilism — a philosophy he detested. While Nietzsche didn’t think highly of “slave morality,” as we just discussed, he did think it was good for the psyche, and that religion played an important role in creating meaning — a center of gravity — in the world. Nietzsche predicted that once a universal basis of morality eroded away, “there will be wars the like of which have never been seen on earth before” — a prediction which came true not long after he died in 1900.