The Gates of Hell
Many days and many nights did the biggest ape spend on this strange planet. The planet of moral people who talk often of hell. They had a dress for man, one for married women, one for boys, one for girls. When the priests called to prayers they came, when the priests called to sacrifice they sacrificed. They all woke up at the same time, ate a same time, prayed at the same time. Their lives ruled by a religion under the rhythm of the stars. -"We do it for this is good", said some. -"We do it because it's best", said others. Never did the biggest ape enquire further for he knew they had no more explanation to give. One day at the market he met a learned man of those people. "We do it because our fathers did it, and before them our forefathers", said the old man, his voice as dry and leathery as his skin. "Obedience was the primary virtue of our forefathers and what brought them glory and paradise". He paused for a while, appearing to think. "We are nowhere as obedient as they were and for that we suffer, this is the reason for our poverty and wretchedness." And with that the old man raised his eyes, deeply sunken in dark caves, hidden behind the weight of eyebrows too big for the emaciated face. The biggest ape rose and took his leave, he had nothing to say. As he was making his way out, a man stood in front of him, unmoved by the lamentations, unstirred by the calls of the priests. There he stood behind his stole. -"Who is this man?", asked the biggest ape. -"He is the richest merchant. ", said one. -"We buy from him because he cheats less", said another, "if only he was more moral like us". -"If only he would pray like us", lamented a woman. -"If only he would give some of his money", said a beggar. -"It pains us that he should go to hell", whispered and old woman. Hearing the talk the man looked up, locking eyes with the biggest ape. 'If I ever enter a god's hell', said the man, 'I will make sure to do so an a honest man.' 'I understand'. Thus thought Apathustra.