Thus Spake Zarathustra: A Book for All and None

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 218

then he became quite mute. His heart, however,
was loosed, and from his eyes there dropped down tears and fell upon
his hands. And he took no further notice of anything, but sat there
motionless, without repelling the animals further. Then flew the doves
to and fro, and perched on his shoulder, and caressed his white hair,
and did not tire of their tenderness and joyousness. The strong lion,
however, licked always the tears that fell on Zarathustra's hands, and
roared and growled shyly. Thus did these animals do.--

All this went on for a long time, or a short time: for properly
speaking, there is NO time on earth for such things--. Meanwhile,
however, the higher men had awakened in Zarathustra's cave, and
marshalled themselves for a procession to go to meet Zarathustra, and
give him their morning greeting: for they had found when they awakened
that he no longer tarried with them. When, however, they reached the
door of the cave and the noise of their steps had preceded them, the
lion started violently; it turned away all at once from Zarathustra, and
roaring wildly, sprang towards the cave. The higher men, however, when
they heard the lion roaring, cried all aloud as with one voice, fled
back and vanished in an instant.

Zarathustra himself, however, stunned and strange, rose from his seat,
looked around him, stood there astonished, inquired of his heart,
bethought himself, and remained alone. "What did I hear?" said he at
last, slowly, "what happened unto me just now?"

But soon there came to him his recollection, and he took in at a glance
all that had taken place between yesterday and to-day. "Here is indeed
the stone," said he, and stroked his beard, "on IT sat I yester-morn;
and here came the soothsayer unto me, and here heard I first the cry
which I heard just now, the great cry of distress.

O ye higher men, YOUR distress was it that the old soothsayer foretold
to me yester-morn,--

--Unto your distress did he want to seduce and tempt me: 'O
Zarathustra,' said he to me, 'I come to seduce thee to thy last sin.'

To my last sin?" cried Zarathustra, and laughed angrily at his own
words: "WHAT hath been reserved for me as my last sin?"

--And once more Zarathustra became absorbed in himself, and sat down
again on the big stone and meditated. Suddenly he sprang up,--

and his countenance changed into brass. "Well! THAT--hath had its time!

My suffering and my fellow-suffering--what matter about them! Do I then
strive after

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-- 277.