The man closed his eyes and was surprised. All the people that he had left far behind, were still there in the mind – their memories, their images. He went out and had to remain outside for three months, just sitting by the side of the door where people used to leave their shoes. Having nothing else to do, he would polish their shoes while they were meeting with the master.
But his desire and longing were sincere. Polishing the shoes of the visitors for three months, slowly, slowly, the crowd dispersed. And one day, the master came out, took his hand in his hands, and invited him in. The master said, “Now there is no need to wait outside. You are alone and our work can begin.”
“Even the wisest,” says Zarathustra, “are nothing but a crowd – not a single voice but so many voices, a marketplace, contradicting each other, no harmony, no accord.”
Behold, I teach you the superman.
The superman is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: The superman shall be the meaning of the earth!
I entreat you, my brothers, remain true to the earth…
What does he mean by superman? – exactly what I mean by the new man. I have dropped the word super for a certain reason. It can be misunderstood: it has been misunderstood. It gives the idea that the man who is going to succeed you will be superior. It humiliates you. And perhaps that is the reason why the superman has not arrived, because who wants to be inferior? If the superman is going to make you a laughingstock, perhaps that is the basic reason why man has not only not tried to go beyond himself, he has done everything to prevent anyone going beyond himself.
Perhaps man crucifies Jesus for a certain reason: Jesus was an insult to humanity. He poisons Socrates, perhaps not knowing exactly why, but I can see that the very presence of Socrates is embarrassing to him, the very height of Socrates, the clarity, the intelligence; in every way the superiority is unbearable.
The crowd cannot tolerate: Socrates has to be destroyed. He makes millions of people feel inferior. It is not that he wants you to feel inferior, he wants you to become as superior as he is. But it is in the very nature of things: neither he wants you to feel inferior nor are you devoid of the longing to be superior. The reality is such that when there is a Socrates, or a Jesus, or a Mansoor, you suddenly feel yourselves pygmies.
Zarathustra is right:
What is the ape to men? A laughing-stock or a painful embarrassment. And just so shall man be to the superman a laughing-stock or a painful embarrassment?
In my understanding, this is the reason why man has not listened to all those people who could have helped him to a greater, more joyful, more truthful, more authentic, more poetic and more beautiful existence.