Chapter 22: Of the Priests
They are pretenders. They call themselves shepherds, but they belong to the same crowd as the sheep, because they are not aware of a simple fact: that to the future there are many bridges. Man has so many potentialities. He can become so many different kinds of superman. And we will need in the world every superman to be unique, so that the variety, and the beauty that variety brings, remains alive on the earth. If everybody becomes just the same, life will become a boredom.
They wrote letters of blood on the path they followed, and their folly taught that truth is proved by blood.
But blood is the worst witness of truth; blood poisons and transforms the purest teaching to delusion and hatred of the heart.
But for thousands of years blood has been the only argument. Whoever can cut your head with a sword has proved that his religion is right. The sword cannot be an argument, but it has been the argument for thousands of years. This shows how the priests have stopped man’s growth, hindered in every way his flights into the open sky - they have not allowed freedom.
And you, my brothers, must be redeemed by greater men than any Redeemer has been, if you would find the way to freedom!
All that you need is to find a way to total freedom, freedom from all kinds of psychological and spiritual bondage, and you yourself will become your own redeemer. You will be a far superior man than all your redeemers have been.
.Thus spake Zarathustra.