Chapter 1: Prologue Part 1
It is everybody’s potential. One just needs a provocation, a challenge; and when you see so many people reaching to such beautiful heights of grace, you cannot remain where you are. Suddenly a great urge arises in you: “Something has to be done. I am wasting my life while others have reached the very destiny, have known all that is worth knowing, have experienced the greatest blissfulness and ecstasy.and what am I doing? - collecting seashells on the beach.”
Out of all these people, Zarathustra is unique. He is the only one who is not against life, who is for life; whose god is not somewhere else; whose god is nothing but another name for life itself. And to live totally, to live joyously and to live intensely, is all that religion is based on.
I feel a deep empathy, affinity, with Zarathustra. But perhaps because he was life-affirmative and not life-negative, he could not gather many followers. It is one of the strange things about human beings: anything that is easy, they cannot accept as worthy of being the goal - the goal has to be very difficult and arduous.
Behind it is the psychology of the ego. The ego always wants something impossible, because only with the impossible can it exist. You will never be able to fulfill desire, and the ego will go on pushing you towards more and more - more greed, more power, more money, more austerities, more spirituality, more discipline. Wherever you find “more”, remember, that is the language of the ego. And there is no way to satisfy the ego; it is always asking for more.
Zarathustra’s whole approach is exactly the same as Chuang Tzu: “Easy is right. Right is easy.” And when you are utterly relaxed, at ease, at home, so relaxed that you have even forgotten that you are at ease; that you have forgotten that you are right - you have become so utterly innocent like a child, you have arrived. But ego has no interest in this. This whole process is something like the suicide of the ego; hence, religions which have been giving the ego difficult tasks, arduous paths, unnatural ideals, impossible goals - they have attracted millions of people.
Zarathustra’s followers can be counted on the fingers. Nobody has bothered about Zarathustra, until, after almost twenty-four centuries, Nietzsche suddenly picked up on him. Nietzsche was against Jesus Christ, and he was against Gautam Buddha - but he was for Zarathustra.
It is something very significant to understand. The man who was against Jesus Christ, against Gautam Buddha.. Why should he be for Zarathustra? - because Nietzsche also has the same attitude and approach towards life. He has seen all these religions, great religions, creating more and more guilt in humanity; creating more and more misery, wars, burning people alive; talking all kinds of nonsense for which no proof at all exists, for which they don’t have any evidence at all; keeping the whole of humanity in darkness, in blindness, because their teachings are based on belief - and belief means blindness.