Old and New Tables
Behold, here is a new table; but where are my brethren who will carry it with me to the valley and into hearts of flesh?—
Thus demandeth my great love to the remotest ones: BE NOT CONSIDERATE OF THY NEIGHBOUR! Man is something that must be surpassed.
There are many divers ways and modes of surpassing: see THOU thereto! But only a buffoon thinketh: "man can also be OVERLEAPT."
Surpass thyself even in thy neighbour: and a right which thou canst seize upon, shalt thou not allow to be given thee!
What thou doest can no one do to thee again. Lo, there is no requital.
He who cannot command himself shall obey. And many a one CAN command himself, but still sorely lacketh self-obedience!
Thus wisheth the type of noble souls: they desire to have nothing GRATUITOUSLY, least of all, life.
He who is of the populace wisheth to live gratuitously; we others, however, to whom life hath given itself—we are ever considering WHAT we can best give IN RETURN!
And verily, it is a noble dictum which saith: "What life promiseth US, that promise will WE keep—to life!"
One should not wish to enjoy where one doth not contribute to the enjoyment. And one should not WISH to enjoy!
For enjoyment and innocence are the most bashful things. Neither like to be sought for. One should HAVE them,—but one should rather SEEK for guilt and pain!—
. . .
To be true—that CAN few be! And he who can, will not! Least of all, however, can the good be true.
Oh, those good ones! GOOD MEN NEVER SPEAK THE TRUTH. For the spirit, thus to be good, is a malady.
They yield, those good ones, they submit themselves; their heart repeateth, their soul obeyeth: HE, however, who obeyeth, DOTH NOT LISTEN TO HIMSELF!
All that is called evil by the good, must come together in order that one truth may be born. O my brethren, are ye also evil enough for THIS truth?
The daring venture, the prolonged distrust, the cruel Nay, the tedium, the cutting-into-the-quick—how seldom do THESE come together! Out of such seed, however—is truth produced!
BESIDE the bad conscience hath hitherto grown all KNOWLEDGE! Break up, break up, ye discerning ones, the old tables!
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O my brethren, I consecrate you and point you to a new nobility: ye shall become procreators and cultivators and sowers of the future;—
—Verily, not to a nobility which ye could purchase like traders with traders' gold; for little worth is all that hath its price.
Let it not be your honour henceforth whence ye come, but whither ye go! Your Will and your feet which seek to surpass you—let these be your new honour!
Verily, not that ye have served a prince—of what account are princes now!—nor that ye have become a bulwark to that which standeth, that it may stand more firmly.
Not that your family have become courtly at courts, and that ye have learned—gay-coloured, like the flamingo—to stand long hours in shallow pools:
(For ABILITY-to-stand is a merit in courtiers; and all courtiers believe that unto blessedness after death pertaineth—PERMISSION-to-sit!)
Nor even that a Spirit called Holy, led your forefathers into promised lands, which I do not praise: for where the worst of all trees grew—the cross,—in that land there is nothing to praise!—
—And verily, wherever this "Holy Spirit" led its knights, always in such campaigns did—goats and geese, and wryheads and guyheads run FOREMOST!—
O my brethren, not backward shall your nobility gaze, but OUTWARD! Exiles shall ye be from all fatherlands and forefather-lands!
Your CHILDREN'S LAND shall ye love: let this love be your new nobility,—the undiscovered in the remotest seas! For it do I bid your sails search and search!
Unto your children shall ye MAKE AMENDS for being the children of your fathers: all the past shall ye THUS redeem! This new table do I place over you!
. . .
"He who learneth much unlearneth all violent cravings"—that do people now whisper to one another in all the dark lanes.
"Wisdom wearieth, nothing is worth while; thou shalt not crave!"—this new table found I hanging even in the public markets.
Break up for me, O my brethren, break up also that NEW table! The weary-o'-the-world put it up, and the preachers of death and the jailer: for lo, it is also a sermon for slavery:—
Because they learned badly and not the best, and everything too early and everything too fast; because they ATE badly: from thence hath resulted their ruined stomach;—
—For a ruined stomach, is their spirit: IT persuadeth to death! For verily, my brethren, the spirit IS a stomach!
Life is a well of delight, but to him in whom the ruined stomach speaketh, the father of affliction, all fountains are poisoned.
To discern: that is DELIGHT to the lion-willed! But he who hath become weary, is himself merely "willed"; with him play all the waves.
And such is always the nature of weak men: they lose themselves on their way. And at last asketh their weariness: "Why did we ever go on the way? All is indifferent!"
TO THEM soundeth it pleasant to have preached in their ears: "Nothing is worth while! Ye shall not will!" That, however, is a sermon for slavery.
O my brethren, a fresh blustering wind cometh Zarathustra unto all way-weary ones; many noses will he yet make sneeze!
Even through walls bloweth my free breath, and in into prisons and imprisoned spirits!
Willing emancipateth: for willing is creating: so do I teach. And ONLY for creating shall ye learn!
And also the learning shall ye LEARN only from me, the learning well!—He who hath ears let him hear!
. . .
O my brethren, there are tables which weariness framed, and tables which slothfulness framed, corrupt slothfulness: although they speak similarly, they want to be heard differently.—
See this languishing one! Only a span-breadth is he from his goal; but from weariness hath he lain down obstinately in the dust, this brave one!
From weariness yawneth he at the path, at the earth, at the goal, and at himself: not a step further will he go,—this brave one!
Now gloweth the sun upon him, and the dogs lick at his sweat: but he lieth there in his obstinacy and preferreth to languish:—
—A span-breadth from his goal, to languish! Verily, ye will have to drag him into his heaven by the hair of his head—this hero!
Better still that ye let him lie where he hath lain down, that sleep may come unto him, the comforter, with cooling patter-rain.
Let him lie, until of his own accord he awakeneth,—until of his own accord he repudiateth all weariness, and what weariness hath taught through him!
Only, my brethren, see that ye scare the dogs away from him, the idle skulkers, and all the swarming vermin:—
—All the swarming vermin of the "cultured," that—feast on the sweat of every hero!—
. . .
I love the brave: but it is not enough to be a swordsman,—one must also know WHEREON to use swordsmanship!
And often is it greater bravery to keep quiet and pass by, that THEREBY one may reserve oneself for a worthier foe!
Ye shall only have foes to be hated; but not foes to be despised: ye must be proud of your foes. Thus have I already taught.
For the worthier foe, O my brethren, shall ye reserve yourselves: therefore must ye pass by many a one,—
—Especially many of the rabble, who din your ears with noise about people and peoples.
Keep your eye clear of their For and Against! There is there much right, much wrong: he who looketh on becometh wroth.
Therein viewing, therein hewing—they are the same thing: therefore depart into the forests and lay your sword to sleep!
Go YOUR ways! and let the people and peoples go theirs!—gloomy ways, verily, on which not a single hope glinteth any more!
Let there the trader rule, where all that still glittereth is—traders' gold. It is the time of kings no longer: that which now calleth itself the people is unworthy of kings.
See how these peoples themselves now do just like the traders: they pick up the smallest advantage out of all kinds of rubbish!
They lay lures for one another, they lure things out of one another,—that they call "good neighbourliness." O blessed remote period when a people said to itself: "I will be—MASTER over peoples!"
For, my brethren, the best shall rule, the best also WILLETH to rule! And where the teaching is different, there—the best is LACKING.
. . .
O my brethren! With whom lieth the greatest danger to the whole human future? Is it not with the good and just?—
—As those who say and feel in their hearts: "We already know what is good and just, we possess it also; woe to those who still seek thereafter!
And whatever harm the wicked may do, the harm of the good is the harmfulest harm!
And whatever harm the world-maligners may do, the harm of the good is the harmfulest harm!
O my brethren, into the hearts of the good and just looked some one once on a time, who said: "They are the Pharisees." But people did not understand him.
The good and just themselves were not free to understand him; their spirit was imprisoned in their good conscience. The stupidity of the good is unfathomably wise.
It is the truth, however, that the good MUST be Pharisees—they have no choice!
The good MUST crucify him who deviseth his own virtue! That IS the truth!
The second one, however, who discovered their country—the country, heart and soil of the good and just,—it was he who asked: "Whom do they hate most?"
The CREATOR, hate they most, him who breaketh the tables and old values, the breaker,—him they call the law-breaker.
For the good—they CANNOT create; they are always the beginning of the end:—
—They crucify him who writeth new values on new tables, they sacrifice UNTO THEMSELVES the future—they crucify the whole human future!
The good—they have always been the beginning of the end.—
O my brethren, have ye also understood this word? And what I once said of the "last man"?—
With whom lieth the greatest danger to the whole human future? Is it not with the good and just?
BREAK UP, BREAK UP, I PRAY YOU, THE GOOD AND JUST!—O my brethren, have ye understood also this word?
Ye flee from me? Ye are frightened? Ye tremble at this word?
O my brethren, when I enjoined you to break up the good, and the tables of the good, then only did I embark man on his high seas.
And now only cometh unto him the great terror, the great outlook, the great sickness, the great nausea, the great sea-sickness.
False shores and false securities did the good teach you; in the lies of the good were ye born and bred. Everything hath been radically contorted and distorted by the good.
But he who discovered the country of "man," discovered also the country of "man's future." Now shall ye be sailors for me, brave, patient!
Keep yourselves up betimes, my brethren, learn to keep yourselves up! The sea stormeth: many seek to raise themselves again by you.
The sea stormeth: all is in the sea. Well! Cheer up! Ye old seaman-hearts!
What of fatherland! THITHER striveth our helm where our CHILDREN'S LAND is! Thitherwards, stormier than the sea, stormeth our great longing!—
"Why so hard!"—said to the diamond one day the charcoal; "are we then not near relatives?"—
Why so soft? O my brethren; thus do I ask you: are ye then not—my brethren?
Why so soft, so submissive and yielding? Why is there so much negation and abnegation in your hearts? Why is there so little fate in your looks?
And if ye will not be fates and inexorable ones, how can ye one day— conquer with me?
And if your hardness will not glance and cut and chip to pieces, how can ye one day—create with me?
For the creators are hard. And blessedness must it seem to you to press your hand upon millenniums as upon wax,—
—Blessedness to write upon the will of millenniums as upon brass,—harder than brass, nobler than brass. Entirely hard is only the noblest.
This new table, O my brethren, put I up over you: BECOME HARD!—
O thou, my Will! Thou change of every need, MY needfulness! Preserve me from all small victories!
Thou fatedness of my soul, which I call fate! Thou In-me! Over-me! Preserve and spare me for one great fate!
And thy last greatness, my Will, spare it for thy last—that thou mayest be inexorable IN thy victory! Ah, who hath not succumbed to his victory!
Ah, whose eye hath not bedimmed in this intoxicated twilight! Ah, whose foot hath not faltered and forgotten in victory—how to stand!—
—That I may one day be ready and ripe in the great noontide: ready and ripe like the glowing ore, the lightning-bearing cloud, and the swelling milk-udder:—
—Ready for myself and for my most hidden Will: a bow eager for its arrow, an arrow eager for its star:—
—A star, ready and ripe in its noontide, glowing, pierced, blessed, by annihilating sun-arrows:—
—A sun itself, and an inexorable sun-will, ready for annihilation in victory!
O Will, thou change of every need, MY needfulness! Spare me for one great victory!—-
Thus spake Zarathustra.