Many die too late, and some die too early. Yet strange soundeth the precept: Die at the right time!
Die at the right time: so teacheth Zarathustra.
To be sure, he who never liveth at the right time, how could he ever die at the right time? Would that he might never be born! Thus do I advise the superfluous ones.
But even the superfluous ones make much ado about their death, and even the hollowest nut wanteth to be cracked.
Every one regardeth dying as a great matter; but as yet death is not a festival. Not yet have people learned to inaugurate the finest festivals.
The consummating death I show unto you, which becometh a stimulus and promise to the living.
His death dieth the consummating one triumphantly, surrounded by hoping and promising ones.
Thus should one learn to die; and there should be no festival at which such a dying one doth not consecrate the oaths of the living!
Thus to die is best; the next best, however, is to die in battle, and sacrifice a great soul.
But to the fighter equally hateful as to the victor, is your grinning death which stealeth nigh like a thief and yet cometh as master.
My death praise I unto you, the voluntary death which cometh unto me because I want it.
And when shall I want it? He that hath a goal and an heir wanteth death at the right time for the goal and the heir.
And out of reverence for the goal and the heir, he will hang up no more withered wreaths in the sanctuary of life.
Verily, not the rope-makers will I resemble: they lengthen out their cord, and thereby go ever backward.
Many a one, also, waxeth too old for his truths and triumphs; a toothless mouth hath no longer the right to every truth.
And whoever wanteth to have fame, must take leave of honour betimes, and practise the difficult art of going at the right time.
One must discontinue being feasted upon when one tasteth best; that is known by those who want to be long loved.
Sour apples are there, no doubt, whose lot is to wait until the last day of autumn; and at the same time they become ripe, yellow, and shrivelled.
In some ageth the heart first, and in others the spirit. And some are hoary in youth, but the late young keep long young.
To many men life is a failure; a poison-worm gnaweth at their heart. Then let them see to it that their dying is all the more a success.
Many never become sweet; they rot even in the summer. It is cowardice that holdeth them fast to their branches.
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