Flee, my friend, into your solitude (meditation)! I see you dazed by the noise of the great men (who pretend to be initiates) and stung all over by the stings of the little men (the common rabble, the fornicators). Woods and crags know how to keep a dignified silence with you. Be like the tree (of life of the Kabbalah) that you love with its wide branches: silently listening (in comprehension, knowledge, and understanding), it hangs over the sea (the creative waters of transmutation).
Where solitude (meditation) ceases the market place begins (the pseudo-spiritual and esoteric groups); and where the market place (esoteric schools) begins the noise of the great actors and the buzzing of the poisonous flies begins too. In the world even the best things amount to nothing without someone to make a show of them (not even the great teachings of the prophets, the messengers of the Superman, can remain alone; they are prostituted by the rabble): great men (initiates, masters) the people call these showmen.
Little do the people comprehend the great—that is, the creating (through sexual alchemy). But they have a mind for all showmen and actors of great things.
Around the inventors of new values the world revolves: invisibly it revolves (since the prophets, the heralds of the Superman, guide humanity). But around the actors revolve the people and fame: that is the way of the world.
The actor has spirit (גדולה Gedulah, the Innermost) but little conscience (awareness, conscious knowledge, or initiatic development) of the spirit. Always he has faith in that with which he inspires the most faith—faith in himself. Tomorrow he has a new faith, and the day after tomorrow a newer one (since these students are mere butterflies who wander from esoteric group to esoteric group, adopting and abandoning multiple teachings). He has quick senses, like the people, and capricious moods. To overthrow (in an argument)—that means to him: to prove. To drive to frenzy (through impassioned speech)—that means to him: to persuade. And blood (energy, attention, adulation) is to him the best of all reasons. A truth that slips into delicate ears alone he calls a lie and nothing (because these so-called "initiates" really are not that; they have no development). Verily, he believes only in gods (egos, idols in his mind) who make a big noise in the world!
Full of solemn jesters is the market place (these pseudo-esoteric and esoteric institutions throughout the world)—and the people (Gnostics) pride themselves on their great men, their masters of the hour. But the hour presses them; so they press you. And from you too they want a Yes or No (they secretly want you to agree with them or to provide an answer to their obtrusive questions). Alas, do you want to place your chair between pro and con (the battle of the antitheses, the subjective rationalizations of the animal ego)?
Do not be jealous of these unconditional, pressing men, you lover of truth (you genuine Gnostic initiate, who has suffered too much)! Never yet has truth hung on the arm of the unconditional (those who do not place into action the causes and conditions that would make these people genuine initiates). On account of these sudden men, go back to your security: it is only in the market place (public, esoteric schools) that one is assaulted with Yes? or No? Slow is the experience of all deep wells (for the hermits of the ninth arcanum, as described by Nietzsche in "On the Adder's Bite," do not genuinely understand the true initiates; the so-called practitioners of gnosis or esotericism are easily insulted by genuine generosity and the progress of others): long must they wait before they know what fell into their depth.
Far from the market place and from fame happens all that is great (away from the politics of esoteric institutions, the Gnostic Movement): far from the market place and from fame the inventors of new values have always dwelt.
Flee, my friend, into your solitude (upon the mountain of initiation): I see you stung all over by poisonous flies (the gossip and slander of these so-called missionaries and Gnostic students). Flee where the air is raw and strong.
Flee into your solitude! You have lived too close to the small and the miserable. Flee their invisible revenge! (For as Samael Aun Weor stated, "Unfortunately, and even if we were very courteous and even sincere at times, there is no doubt that invisibly and internally we treat each other very badly. People who are apparently very generous drag their fellow men daily into the secret caves of themselves to do with them whatever they please (abuse, mockery, contempt, etc.) ―Treatise of Revolutionary Psychology). Against you they are nothing but revenge.
No longer raise up your arm against them. Numberless are they, and it is not your lot to shoo flies. Numberless are these small and miserable creatures; and many a proud building (initiate) has perished of raindrops and weeds (gossip, criticism, and slander). You are no (philosopher's) stone (perfected completely through the Mountains of Initiation, Resurrection, and Ascension), but you have already become hollow from many drops. You will yet burst from many drops. I see you wearied by poisonous flies, bloody in a hundred places; and your pride (solar dignity) refuses even to be angry. Blood (energy and attention) is what they want from you in all innocence. Their bloodless souls crave blood, and so they sting in all innocence. But you, you deep one (you genuine hermit of Arcanum Nine), suffer too deeply even from small wounds; and even before you have healed, the same poisonous worm crawls over your hand. You are too proud (dignified) to kill these greedy creatures. But beware lest it become your downfall that you suffer all their poisonous injustice.
They hum around you with their praise too: obtrusiveness is their praise. They want the proximity of your skin and your blood. They flatter you as a god or devil; they whine before you as before a god or devil. What does it matter? They are flatterers and whiners and nothing more (they have no development and they will sooner or later enter devolution and the Second Death).
Often they affect charm. But that has always been the cleverness of cowards. Indeed, cowards are clever! They think a lot about you with their petty souls—you always seem problematic to them. Everything that one thinks about a lot becomes problematic.
They punish you for all your (solar) virtues. They forgive you entirely—your mistakes.
Because you are gentle and just in disposition you say, "They are guiltless in their small existence." ("They do not know any better and perhaps in time, through Gnosis, they will learn"). But their petty souls think, "Guilt is every great existence."
Even when you are gentle to them they still feel despised by you: and they return your benefaction with hidden malefactions. Your silent pride (humility and dignity) always runs counter to their taste; they are jubilant if for once you are modest enough to be vain (to entertain them and be a fool, to act upon the whims and enthusiasm of their animal ego, such as through functions and gatherings for these so-called esoteric groups). That which we recognize in a person we also inflame in him: therefore, beware of the small creatures. Before you they feel small (they recognize they are not initiates), and their baseness glimmers and glows in invisible revenge. Have you not noticed how often they became mute when you stepped among them, and how their strength went from them like smoke from a dying fire?
Indeed, my friend, you are the bad conscience of your neighbors: for they are unworthy of you. They hate you, therefore, and would like to suck your blood. Your neighbors will always be poisonous flies; that which is great in you, just that must make them more poisonous and more like flies.
Flee, my friend, into your solitude (upon the Mountain of Initiation, the Superior Worlds) and where the air is raw and strong! It is not your lot to shoo flies.
Thus spoke Zarathustra.
From Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for All and None by Friedrich Nietzsche, translated by Walter Kaufmann
The Gnostic Academy of Chicago
Scriptures from all major religions and spiritual traditions with Gnostic commentaries.