Then, when it was about midnight, Zarathustra went his way over the ridge of the isle, that he might arrive early in the morning at the other coast, because there he meant to embark. For there was a good roadstead there, in which foreign ships also liked to anchor; those ships took many people with them who wished to cross over from the Happy Isles. So when Zarathustra thus ascended the mountain, he thought on the way of his many solitary wanderings from youth onwards, and how many mountains and ridges and summits he had already climbed.
I am a wanderer and mountain-climber, said he to his heart. I love not the plains, and it seemeth I cannot long sit still.
And whatever may still overtake me as fate and experiencea wandering will be therein, and a mountain- climbing; in the end one experienceth only oneself.
The time is now past when accidents could befall me; and what could now fall to my lot which would not already be mine own!
It returneth only, it cometh home to me at lastmine own Self, and such of it as hath been long abroad, and scattered among things and accidents.
And one thing more do I know: I stand now before my last summit, and before that which hath been longest reserved for me. Ah, my hardest path must I ascend! Ah, I have begun my lone-somest wandering!
He, however, who is of my nature doth not avoid such an hour, the hour that saith unto him: Now only dost thou go the way to thy greatness! Summit and abyssthese are now comprised together!
Thou goest the way to thy greatness; now hath it become thy last refuge, what was hitherto thy last danger!
Thou goest the way to thy greatness; it must now be thy best courage that there is no longer any path behind thee!
Thou goest the way to thy greatness; here shall no one steal after thee! Thy foot itself hath effaced the path behind thee, and over it standeth written: Impossibility.
And if all ladders henceforth fail thee, then must thou learn to mount upon thine own head; how couldst thou mount upward otherwise?
Upon thine own head, and beyond thine own heart! Now must the gentlest in thee become the hardest.
He who hath always much indulged himself, sickeneth at last by his much-indulgence. Praises on what maketh hardy! I do not praise the land where butter and honeyflow!
To learn to look away from oneself, is necessary in order to see many thingsthis hardiness is needed by every mountain-climber.
He, however, who is obtrusive with his eyes as a discerner, how can he ever see more of anything than its foreground!
But thou, O Zarathustra, wouldst view the ground of everything, and its background: thus must thou mount even above thyselfup, upwards, until thou hast even thy stars under thee!
Yea! To look down upon myself, and even upon my stars: that only would I call my summit, that hath remained for me as my last summit!
Thus spake Zarathustra to himself while ascending, comforting his heart with harsh maxims: for he was sore at heart as he had never been before. And when he had reached the top of the mountain-ridge,
|Copyright: All texts on Bibliomania are © Bibliomania.com Ltd, and may not be reproduced in any form without our written permission. See our FAQ for more details.|