Friedrich Nietzsche: Thus Spake Zarathustra


When yester-eve the moon arose, then did I fancy it about to bear a sun: so broad and teeming did it lie on the horizon.

But it was a liar with its pregnancy; and sooner will I believe in the man in the moon than in the woman.

To be sure, little of a man is he also, that timid night-reveller. Verily, with a bad conscience doth he stalk over the roofs.

For he is covetous and jealous, the monk in the moon; covetous of the earth, and all the joys of lovers.

Nay, I like him not, that tom-cat on the roofs! Hateful unto me are all that slink around half-closed windows!

Piously and silently doth he stalk along on the star-carpets:--but I like no light-treading human feet, on which not even a spur jingleth.

Every honest one's step speaketh; the cat however, stealeth along over the ground. Lo! cat-like doth the moon come along, and dishonestly.--

This parable speak I unto you sentimental dissemblers, unto you, the "pure discerners!" You do I call--covetous ones!

Also ye love the earth, and the earthly: I have divined you well!--but shame is in your love, and a bad conscience--ye are like the moon!

To despise the earthly hath your spirit been persuaded, but not your bowels: these, however, are the strongest in you!

And now is your spirit ashamed to be at the service of your bowels, and goeth by-ways and lying ways to escape its own shame.

"That would be the highest thing for me"--so saith your lying spirit unto itself--"to gaze upon life without desire, and not like the dog, with hanging-out tongue:

To be happy in gazing: with dead will, free from the grip and greed of selfishness--cold and ashy-grey all over, but with intoxicated moon-eyes!

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