This is great advice to those who want human consciousness to reach to its highest possible peaks. The first thing is: “Physician heal thyself.” You should be completely free of all superstitions, all senseless dead pasts, you should be new every moment. This will be your health. And this will help people: seeing you, seeing your awareness, seeing your love, seeing your compassion, seeing your blissfulness will be the proof that others are wrong and they have to change. It is not a question of arguing; it is a question of presenting your life in the new light, so those who are standing in darkness can see that they are standing in darkness, and that is the cause of their misery and their sickness.
There are a thousand paths that have never yet been trodden, a thousand forms of health and hidden islands of life. This is where anybody who has intelligence will fall in love with Zarathustra. He is so different from other teachers of religion.
Mahavira says, “I have said the last word; now there is no more to be discovered. All that has to be discovered about human consciousness I have discovered. There will not be a twenty-fifth tirthankara.” Gautam Buddha says the same thing. Mohammed says, “There have been prophets before me, but after me there will be no prophets, because I have brought all knowledge; now nothing is any longer hidden.”
Zarathustra has a very different approach, very humble. There are a thousand paths that have never yet been trodden, a thousand forms of health and hidden islands of life. Man and man’s earth are still unexhausted and undiscovered.
He does not want to be the last word. On the contrary he wants to be the beginning, and leaves everything open. “Go on changing as you come into new spaces. You don’t have to be in agreement with me, because there are thousands of paths which are untrodden, and there are thousands of islands on the earth and in the inner being of man which are not yet discovered. So don’t remain clinging to me – move on!”
He is saying, “I teach you movement. I don’t give you a fixed doctrine; I only give you an impetus, an incentive, a challenge.” A real master is always a challenge: challenge for new discoveries, challenge for new unknown spaces, challenge for faraway stars. He simply gives encouragement. He helps you to be on the wing, and leaves the whole sky open for you.
Watch and listen, you solitaries! From the future come winds with a stealthy flapping of wings; and good tidings go out to delicate ears. You solitaries of today, you who have seceded from society.... Be careful about these words: You solitaries of today, you who have seceded from society, you shall one day be a people: from you, who have chosen out yourselves, shall a chosen people spring – and from this chosen people, the superman.
It is unfortunate that it has not happened yet. Still.... You are solitaries today; my name for solitaries is sannyasins. Still you are few. Twenty-five centuries have past, but the words of Zarathustra sound as if they are being spoken today.
You solitaries of today, you who have seceded from society, you shall one day be a people. Twenty-five centuries ago he was hoping – and it is still a hope. I am still hoping that you will not remain few. I have even started calling you “my people”.
From you, who have chosen out yourselves, shall a chosen people spring – and from this chosen people, the superman.
Truly, the earth shall yet become a house of healing! And already a new odor floats about it, an odor that brings health – and a new hope! I can simply repeat his words, because they are as true today as they were twenty-five centuries ago. It is very saddening; it is unfortunate, but perhaps he came too early, ahead of his time. Every genius comes early, but Zarathustra seems to have come too early.
Perhaps now is the time that we can make this earth a temple of healing – not only of the body but of the soul too, a holy place where everybody is whole, not split, not schizophrenic. It is still very small, but it is there in the hearts of many intelligent and courageous people. A longing for a greater life, for a higher life, for a better life has already arisen. Perhaps the spring is very close. Perhaps we have come at the right time.
An odor that brings health – and a new hope! We want this hope to become a reality; it has remained a hope too long. It is time that the dream is realized and if we cannot realize this dream, then there is no future for humanity.
This gives me great hope, because the mad crowd has come close to a global suicide. And now there will be only two alternatives: either transform yourself into a new man, the superman, or get ready to disappear from this earth. And I don’t think that man wants to die. I don’t think that trees want to die or the birds or the animals. I don’t think that life wants to commit suicide.
Hence, most probably, it will choose to transform itself and give birth to the superman, and drop this whole arrangement that politicians around the world are making ready for you, for committing suicide. Now the forces of life and the forces of death are confronting each other. The forces of life are fragile, just like an odor in the air. And the forces of death are very strong.
Still, death cannot win over life. Hate cannot win over love. The ugly cannot win over the beautiful.