It is such a sad fate, one which has never befallen any great mystic or any great poet before Nietzsche. The crucifixion of Jesus or poisoning of Socrates are not as bad a fate, as that which has befallen Friedrich Nietzsche – to be misunderstood on such a grand scale that Adolf Hitler managed to kill more than eight million people in the name of Friedrich Nietzsche and his philosophy. It will take a little time…. When Adolf Hitler and the Nazis and the second world war are forgotten, Nietzsche will come back to his true light. He is coming back.
Just the other day, sannyasins from Japan informed me that my books are selling in their language at the highest rate and next to them are Friedrich Nietzsche’s – his books are also selling. And just a few days earlier the same information came from Korea. Perhaps people may be finding something similar in them.
But Friedrich Nietzsche has to be interpreted again, so that all the nonsense that has been put, by the Nazis, over his beautiful philosophy can be thrown away. He has to be purified, he needs a baptism.
Little Sammy tells his grandfather about the great scientist, Albert Einstein, and his theory of relativity.
“Ah yes,” says the grandfather, “and what does the theory have to say?”
“Our teacher says that only a few people in the whole world can understand it,” the boy explains, “but then she told us what it means. Relativity is like this: if a man sits for an hour with a pretty girl, it feels like a minute; but if he sits on a hot stove for a minute, it feels like an hour – and that’s the theory of relativity.”
Grandpa is silent and slowly shakes his head, “Sammy,” he says softly, “from this your Einstein makes a living?”
People understand according to their own level of consciousness.
It was just a coincidence that Nietzsche fell into the hands of the Nazis. They needed a philosophy for war, and Nietzsche appreciates the beauty of the warrior. They wanted some idea for which to fight, and Nietzsche gave them a good excuse – for the superman.
Of course, they immediately got hold of the idea of superman. The Nordic German Aryans were going to be Nietzsche’s new race of man, the superman. They wanted to dominate the world, and Nietzsche was very helpful, because he was saying that man’s deepest longing is “will to power.” They changed it into will to dominate.
Now they had the whole philosophy: the Nordic German Aryans are the superior race because they are going to give birth to the superman. They have the will to power and they will dominate the whole world. That is their destiny – to dominate the inferior human beings. Obviously, the arithmetic is simple: the superior should dominate the inferior.
These beautiful concepts…Nietzsche could not ever have imagined they, would become so dangerous and such a nightmare to the whole of humanity. But you cannot avoid being misunderstood, you cannot do anything about it.