Prologue Part 1
When Zarathustra was thirty years old, he left his home and the lake of his home and went into the mountains. Here he had the enjoyment of his spirit and his solitude and he did not weary of it for ten years. But at last his heart turned – and one morning he rose with the dawn, stepped before the sun and spoke to it thus:
Great star! What would your happiness be, if you had not those for whom you shine!
You have come up here to my cave for ten years: you would have grown weary of your light and of this journey, without me, my eagle and my serpent.
But we waited for you every morning, took from you your superfluity and blessed you for it.
Behold! I am weary of my wisdom, like a bee that has gathered too much honey; I need hands outstretched to take it.
I should like to give it away and distribute it, until the wise among men have again become happy in their folly and the poor happy in their wealth.
To that end, I must descend into the depths: as you do at the evening, when you go behind the sea and bring light to the underworld too, superabundant star!
Like you, I must go down – as men, to whom I want to descend, call it.
So bless me then, tranquil eye, that can behold without envy even an excessive happiness!
Bless the cup that wants to overflow, that the waters may flow golden from him and bear the reflection of your joy over all the world!
Behold! This cup wants to be empty again, and Zarathustra wants to be man again.
Thus began Zarathustra’s down-going.
Friedrich Nietzsche is perhaps the greatest philosopher the world has known. He is also great in another dimension which many philosophers are simply unaware of: he is a born mystic.
His philosophy is not only of the mind but is rooted deep in the heart, and some roots even reach to his very being. The only thing unfortunate about him is, that he was born in the West; hence, he could never come across any mystery school. He contemplated deeply, but he was absolutely unaware about meditation. His thoughts sometimes have the depth of a meditator, sometimes the flight of a Gautam Buddha; but these things seem to have happened spontaneously to him.
He knew nothing about the ways of enlightenment, about the path that reaches to one’s own being. This created a tremendous turmoil in his being. His dreams go as high as the stars but his life remained very ordinary – it does not have the aura that meditation creates. His thoughts are not his blood, his bones, his marrow. They are beautiful, immensely beautiful, but something is missing; and what is missing is life itself. They are dead words; they don’t breathe – there is no heartbeat.
But I have chosen to speak on him for a special reason: he is the only philosopher, from East or West, who has at least thought of the heights of human consciousness. He may not have experienced them; he certainly has not experienced them. He also thought of becoming a man again. That idea, of descending from your heights into the marketplace, descending from the stars to the earth, has never happened to anybody else.
He has something of Gautam Buddha, perhaps unconsciously carried over from his past lives, and he has something of the Zorba. Both are incomplete. But he is the only proof that Buddha and Zorba can meet; that those who have reached to the highest peaks need not remain there.
In fact, they should not remain there. They owe something to humanity; they owe something to the earth. They have been born amongst human beings; they have lived in the same darkness and in the same misery. And now that they have seen the light, it becomes obligatory that they should come back to wake up those who are fast asleep; to bring the good news – that darkness is not all, that unconsciousness is our choice.
If we choose to be conscious, all unconsciousness and all darkness can disappear. It is our choice that we are living in the dark valleys. If we decide to live on the sunlit peaks, nobody can prevent us because that is also our potential.