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Chapter 22: The Greeting

We have not seen anything more gladdening. Our hearts are dancing. We cannot believe it, but we have to believe it in spite of ourselves. Just your very presence makes us feel rejuvenated. You are a robust will, exalted. It is the earth’s fairest growth. We have seen millions of people, but you are the fairest growth on the earth. A whole landscape is refreshed by one such tree. Even if you are alone, the whole landscape is changed by your presence.

To the pine-tree, O Zarathustra, do I compare him who grows up like you: tall, silent, hard, alone, of the finest, supplest wood, magnificent - at last, however, reaching out with strong, green branches for its domain, asking bold questions of the winds and storms and whatever is at home in the heights.

The king says to Zarathustra, “I can only compare you to a pine tree - high in the sky, dancing in the wind, in the rain, in the sun, reaching to the very stars, with tremendous will asking questions to the storms. Your very presence has made the heights divine, magnificent.

Replying more boldly, a commander, a victor: Oh who would not climb high mountains to behold such trees?
O Zarathustra; at your glance even the restless man grows secure and heals his heart.
A great longing has arisen, and many have learned to ask: Who is Zarathustra?

You may not be aware of it - you live in the mountains - but in the plains thousands of people are asking a single question: Who is Zarathustra? Your fragrance has reached far ahead of you. Your name is ringing in millions of hearts, creating a great desire, a great longing, of which they have never been aware - to reach to the heights, to find ways to transform their potential into a reality, to make their dreams come true. All that was dormant in them.just hearing about you and the miracles that are happening around you, the dormant, the sleeping potential is slowly uncoiling like a serpent.

And he into whose ear you have ever poured your song and your honey: all the hidden men, the hermits and hermit-couples, say all at once to their hearts:
“Does Zarathustra still live? There is no longer any point in living, it is all one, everything is in vain: except we live with Zarathustra!”

Those who have tasted your songs, in whose ears you have poured your honey, your love, your consciousness, they feel that if you are no longer alive then there is no point in living for them too. Without you the whole earth becomes meaningless. You are the very earth and the meaning of the earth. You are the very life and the very salt of the life to many, many people. Those who have tasted a little bit of your existence are no longer the same: they have moved from being ordinary human beings towards something higher, something greater.

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