Osho about Nietzsche, Christ and Hitler

«Friedrich Nietzsche is one of the philosophers with the most potential in the whole world, not only in the West, not only in Germany. His insights are significant for everybody. But he was misunderstood by all his contemporaries. That’s the usual fate of every genius. It is almost routine, not an exception but a rule, that the genius is bound to be misunderstood by his contemporaries, for the simple reason that he is far ahead of his time. (…)

Nietzsche was the only one – even in his madness he would not sign his name without writing over his signature “Antichrist.” Even in his madness that much was absolutely certain to him: that he was anti-Christ, that Christ has created a tradition which is immensely dangerous to humanity, that he has polluted the human mind, even about small things.

When Christ says, “If somebody slaps you on one cheek, give him the other too,” Nietzsche was the first man to say that this is an insult to the man who has slapped you. Now, it needs a certain intelligence to understand what he is saying.

He is saying, in giving him the other cheek you are reducing him to subhumanity; you are becoming a god. Behave like a human being: give him a good slap the way he has given you one. And the argument that looked very strange to the Christians who were his contemporaries, was very simple: “In this way you are proving equality. ‘I am also a human being. If you hit me, then I will hit you. I am not a god, I cannot forgive you.’ All those who have been trying to forgive are very subtle egoists. They are enjoying reducing the other person almost to an animal. That is worse than hitting the man back hard! Just behave like man to man.” And you can watch it: the person who gives his other cheek – you can see in his eyes and in his face and in his words great pride and great ego.

Even when Jesus himself on the cross asks, “Father, forgive these people, because they do not understand what they are doing,” he is still trying to prove on the cross the same thing for which he is being crucified – that everybody is ignorant and only he knows.

Again, it was the insight of Nietzsche to see that Jesus’ emphasis is not on forgiveness, his emphasis is, “They do not know what they are doing. They do not know whom they are crucifying. They do not understand that they are crucifying the only begotten son of God.” In simple words, “These are idiots. Just forgive them – they are not worth punishment.” Even on the cross his ego is as assertive as it has ever been.

He is not a humble man. Although he teaches humility, he never shows humility in his whole life. Then certainly his teaching of humility is just the teaching for making your ego so subtle that it can use humility as food, as nourishment. He is certainly not a humble man. There is no indication in his whole life of where he has acted in a humble manner. All his declarations that he is the messiah for whom you have been waiting for centuries, that now God has sent his own son to fulfill the promise. These are not the words of humility, these are not the words of a person who is nobody. Jesus is not nobody – he is higher than everybody else. Even the prophets, Moses or Abraham or Elijah, are nothing; they are only prophets, just messengers. He is the only begotten son of God, and he says clearly that he was even before Abraham. Now, Abraham was alive almost three thousand years before Jesus; and Jesus is saying he was before Abraham. He is trying to say that he belongs to eternity, he is eternal, and all these prophets are just bubbles in time. He has always been and will always be – but prophets come and go.

Nietzsche is the only man in the whole Western history who has a deep psychological understanding of Jesus Christ, and who has a very subtle analysis – far more subtle than any Freud or Jung can do. (…)

People who are understood by their contemporaries are not geniuses, they are not great giants of intelligence. That’s why their contemporaries can understand them. (…)

… he was misunderstood even by the people who thought they were followers of Nietzsche. For example, Adolf Hitler – he thought that he was a follower of Nietzsche. Adolf Hitler is just a retarded man, and the distance between him and Nietzsche’s intelligence is so vast; he could not even understand what Nietzsche was saying. So he picked at things which he wanted, just to have a philosopher behind him. And because Adolf Hitler picked him up, Nietzsche became even more condemned along with Adolf Hitler. It was not his fault – he had not chosen Adolf Hitler as his successor – but he became more condemned. Even to mention his name became notorious. He became so closely associated with fascism that even great thinkers would not talk about him, for the simple reason that he was a fascist. He is not a fascist. But when a person is so rich in giving ideas to the world, you can always choose from him things that suit you, and leave everything else that does not suit you. (…)

Nobody has refuted Friedrich Nietzsche. Although he has challenged the whole of Christianity, the popes have been silent – because what he is saying is so clear that it is better to ignore rather than to refute it; you cannot refute it.

It is good – it will help Europe to get rid of Christianity, which has been a calamity and has kept people retarded. (…)».

Osho

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