43. XLIII. MANLY PRUDENCE.
Not the height, it is the declivity that is terrible!
The declivity, where the gaze shooteth DOWNWARDS, and the hand graspeth
UPWARDS. There doth the heart become giddy through its double will.
Ah, friends, do ye divine also my heart's double will?
This, this is MY declivity and my danger, that my gaze shooteth towards the
summit, and my hand would fain clutch and lean--on the depth!
To man clingeth my will; with chains do I bind myself to man, because I am
pulled upwards to the Superman: for thither doth mine other will tend.
And THEREFORE do I live blindly among men, as if I knew them not: that my
hand may not entirely lose belief in firmness.
I know not you men: this gloom and consolation is often spread around me.
I sit at the gateway for every rogue, and ask: Who wisheth to deceive me?
This is my first manly prudence, that I allow myself to be deceived, so as
not to be on my guard against deceivers.
Ah, if I were on my guard against man, how could man be an anchor to my
ball! Too easily would I be pulled upwards and away!
This providence is over my fate, that I have to be without foresight.
And he who would not languish amongst men, must learn to drink out of all
glasses; and he who would keep clean amongst men, must know how to wash
himself even with dirty water.
And thus spake I often to myself for consolation: "Courage! Cheer up! old
heart! An unhappiness hath failed to befall thee: enjoy that as thy--
This, however, is mine other manly prudence: I am more forbearing to the
VAIN than to the proud.