Zarathustra’s contributions are great. The idea that God is dead is not only a logical idea; it is very existential. Looking at the world, it cannot be accepted that it was created by a wise God. And the way it goes on falling down, it seems impossible that there is a God who protects, who saves, who takes care of his children.
This prophet had met him when he was going to the mountains for solitude, for meditations, to reach to his own silences of the heart. Again he has met the prophet.
One day, while sitting outside his cave, Zarathustra is visited by the old prophet, who warns Zarathustra that he has come to seduce him to his ultimate sin – that of pity, pity for the “higher man.” Zarathustra is horror-struck by this, but finally agrees to answer the cry of the higher man, to seek him out and help him.
Zarathustra is against the very idea of pity, because it reduces the other man to a humiliating position. Zarathustra is even against compassion, because that means you are higher and the other is lower, that you are the giver and the other is the receiver. Zarathustra believes in sharing out of love – not for pity, not for compassion, but out of your abundance. You have so much; you are burdened with so much that you want to share it. This gives dignity to the other man. You don’t reduce him into a beggar.
That is one of his qualities of the superman. He will only share out of his abundance. He has no pity and he has no compassion; he knows only love. Love is the only law. Love equalizes people – you give because you love, you give because you respect. You give and allow the man to feel, to be honored – that is true giving. If the other man feels a beggar, if the way of your giving is such that you strengthen your ego, brag about your giving, then you have committed a sin; it is not virtue.
That’s why the old prophet says:
He has come to seduce him to his ultimate sin – that of pity, pity for the “higher man.” Zarathustra is horror-struck by this, but finally agrees to answer the cry of the higher man, to seek him out and help him.
He leaves his cave, and sets out on a path on which he meets diverse people. First, the kings….
Obviously they think they are the highest human beings, because they possess so much – their territories, their kingdoms, their money, their power. Obviously they believe they are higher. And the kings have been forcing poets to sing songs in their praise, forcing historians to write in their praise, forcing priests to declare them almost gods.