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Chapter 7: Of the Stillest Hour

The scientists have found a very shocking phenomenon: for centuries all our senses have been thought to be doors and windows through which existence can enter into us, but the latest research shows that rather than being windows and doors, our senses have been functioning as censors; and the percentage that they censor is unimaginable - ninety-eight percent! What you see is only two percent of reality; ninety-eight percent has been blocked by your senses. What you hear is only two percent; ninety-eight percent has been blocked by your mind.

Certainly a man like Zarathustra will be able to see that he is going round and round you, but he is not reaching your heart. All doors are closed; no windows are open.

Before he departs again into solitude, to go deeper into himself and work out something more helpful for communion, he talks first with himself - it is a monologue - and then he departs from his disciples. Because it is a monologue, it is even more important than any dialogue, because he can say exactly what he wants to say - he is talking to himself. The moment you talk to somebody else, you have to take him into consideration, and that pollutes everything, contaminates everything.

Zarathustra tells his disciples he must go back into solitude again, although he does so reluctantly, because the evening before, his stillest hour had spoken to him. What is this stillest hour? When he was absolutely silent and alone, he heard his own still, small voice. He recounts what happened.

I tell you this in a parable: yesterday, at the stillest hour, the ground seemed to give way: my dream began.

You can see: just to be understood by his disciples, he is using words which are not exactly true. He is saying:

I tell you this in a parable.

It is not a parable; it is something that has actually happened to him, but they will not be able to conceive of its happening. But as a parable, of course, they will be ready to listen to it.

Yesterday, at the stillest hour, the ground seemed to give way: my dream began.

He does not say that it was an authentic experience - that would make them cautious. He wants them to be relaxed, so something can penetrate into their beings. He says, “It was just a dream.”

Have you ever watched? - when somebody tells a parable or a dream, your mind is more open to listen to it. After all, it is a dream - it is not going to disturb you. After all, it is only a parable, fictitious. You read fiction with a more open mind than you ever hear any mystic - because to hear the mystic is dangerous. To hear the mystic means to get ready for a pilgrimage. To hear a mystic exactly means to go through a transformation. But fiction is entertainment.

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