Could you ever picture the end of the world taking place in your apartment? Has to stack the odds in your favor doesnít it? You got all your books surrounding you so if something comes up youíre not sure of, you know right where to look it up. Nothing they can throw at you that you donít know where to find the answer, right?
Keep coming back to that one little detail, donít we? You have to know yourself. Do you have any idea what that means?
Suppose evil comes in with a temptation of the most beautiful women youíve ever seen ready to perform to your heartís content. You can handle that. No way you can get ratcheted into your sexual fantasies and lose your capacity to reason. No way!
Suppose good comes in with the same temptation, all the virgins heaven promised. Wonít affect you! No way!
Suppose evil says they can hit your brain with 24/7 endorphins. Pleasure on top of pleasure on top of pleasure. Wonít be of interest to you. You get more pleasure from learning, from understanding. Physical pleasure is a donít care to you.
Good comes back saying that isnít the way itís done. You need to peek and then settle and then peak again so that you can see that good things are happening. 24/7 endorphins is so much science fiction wire-head nonsense. But, rising, damping, rising, damping, thatís good sound psychotherapy.
Do you have yourself figured out yet?
The game has begun. It may be the opening minutes but itís real.
Tag; youíre it!
September 9th, 2003, 05:18 AM
Sit on a windowsill, pondering, watching. Humanity. Man. caught in the middle, used and abused. Tormented, teased. Go this way, go that way.
Oh look a horseman riding by, famine the ground baked hard, the crop gone, blown away in dust. The child with the distended belly. Shrug the shoulders, the child is the wrong colour, white, black, yellow, green with blue spots. Wrong colour not one of yours. Eat your greasy burger and laugh over a beer.
Strike one for whose side, angels or demons. Count the score. Good or evil's hand here?
Whosh! There goes another rider, the coughing begins in the airport, by the end of the day the cough has travelled round the world in either direction and is going north and south at a few hundred miles an hour. They carry the suffering off plane after plane, people start wearing masks. Do you care, no. You don't like airplanes, you live 30 miles from the nearest airport in a shadey leafy suburb not going to bother you is it?
Strike two. That one belongs to those above, we dropped the ball that time.
The pounding of hooves the creature matches its pace across the sky with the missile, rearing as the device strikes its target. One plume of black laced through with red flame. A lovely flower blooming in the city. Another and another. Nice. The hate is running high, We did well this time, ours I think.
The hand of the rider reaches down to the small form blown across the mall by the explosion, then it withdraws. Not ours this, one or the other side. Humanity this one is yours. You are joining the party right on time.
The whore of Babylon has spread her legs for you and you are in there. Or are you? I look at the man in the room again and continue to ponder the events of just this one day.
September 9th, 2003, 09:49 AM
It happened quickly. Too quickly. There was no time to decide, these were but feints, entrapment on a global scale that held nothing back. Nothing. They would be keeping count, counting the scores of a game, a deadly game. But is it real? I thought I would know the time, it would feel right? No it would be, there would be no feeling.
"We await your choice." Beginnings are funny things, you wait a lifetime for one then come to the end and the realisation you've wasted thousands of them, yet the question always is did I really have a choice. Free will, the ability to choose a path of your own ............ but with restrictions, predestination being a pretty heavy restriction.
If the world is your oyster, what then is the shell? Morality? Faith? Belief? Or the chains of thought, repression of the mind into a recognisable pattern. It is the inability to escape stagnation that dooms us, to follow our footprints in endless circles, deja vu for the masses. Now comes the time of choosing, I must step off the path and create my own beginning.
September 10th, 2003, 04:29 PM
Brace yourself, the time has come for the forces of good and evil to enter the battleground, clash, do battle, win or lose. You are the battlefield. They must clash in your consciousness, win you over, sway your choice. You determine victory. You pick the winner.
September 22nd, 2003, 06:25 PM
Shoaib was scared, he had every right to be, the cracks had appeared at noon. He had watched them splinter across the floor directly in front of him, jagging away at frightening speeds. Frightening because as they moved the earth began opening Ė also at frightening speed. Two further cracks were spreading across the city, all who knew cried at the significance.
As reports flooded in, the secretive Group 767 were dispatched to say hello to one Mr Arafat.
Afore mentioned reports however became somewhat hazy when hundreds began seeing a supposed second coming and Jesus crossing Ararat, the road, moving towards Christ Church and The Citadel.
September 22nd, 2003, 06:34 PM
Every TV in the shop window had the same thing on, Jesus walking towards The Citadel. I could not berate the masses who swarmed around me, eager for a look at the second coming, how could they know. It was an act of pure irony, an act by a being so beautiful it scared me. How, how had he got here ............ the words echoed across my consciousness, shutting out any other thought:
"You are not worthy of His army, but he is coming, the shaft has a key........."
September 23rd, 2003, 12:18 PM
After fifty years of motion pictures, movies, TV specials, you think the special effects in this last one are a bit overdone, a bit gawdy, a bit superfluous. This is good and evil weíre talking about here. One wins; one loses. Do all they get for their efforts is the Oscar for best special effects? Shouldnít there be more than this? What do they win? What do they lose?
You could suppose this is all preliminary to a Last Judgment, but that is a rigged game. Everyone knows how that one comes out so what is the point of this Cecil B. DeMille epic going on outside? All the bad people being punished but just the ones alive today. What about the ones who lived and died over the millennia, why arenít they subjected to this final spectacle? Ah, you say they are, but as spectators. Even empathic spectators have difficulty imagining this horror.
If there is to be a final confrontation, then the game must be open; the winner canít be known in advance. Thatís the essence of Mercedesí message. The game is open, no one knows who wins and who loses. No one knows what they win or lose, only that the stakes are everything.
Did you ever wonder why an open system tends to chaos? Why nonlinear equations exist? Why in the middle of chaos you find fractals? Definitions is why. When seek you answers to questions, your answer depends upon definitions. Define evil without reference to good; define good without reference to evil. Symbiotic relationships. One cannot exist without the other. What does that mean for a final confrontation?
It means this ought to be a very good show.
September 25th, 2003, 10:21 AM
A good show needs a good house. I watch the crowds gathering at churches of all kinds. I laugh and settle myself down again on the windowsill of the man.
The armies are drawn up, the scouts are out. The first engagements are planned out, mapped and plotted.
But who will have the last say. Me? That would funny.
Him, that man sitting in his room? He doens't play for my side or the other one. But he is in the game.
Oh look an angel? He is standing looking very lost and confused by it all.. I wave. He looks up.
Then the heavens rumble "Go put it in your pipe, " I mutter at the sky...
September 25th, 2003, 03:58 PM
ďCome in; come in. So nice to meet you both at last. The build up has been superb; Iím duly impressed with both sides. Youíre ready now for the final confrontation, yes? Or would you like more preliminaries? Your show, you know. Iím quite content to sit here waiting till you realize that itís you and me, the three of us that are going to have things out.
ďLet me tell you how I see it and then you tell me where I have gone wrong. Among the three of us there will be answers enough for all of us, donít you think? Yes, fine, Iíll start.
ďI think you believe you must make the case that you have won humanity to your side and, if you can prove that case toÖhow do they say it?Ö.beyond a reasonable doubt? yes, thatís itÖwhen you have proven your case beyond a reasonable doubt., then you must be declared the winner. However, if I or your opponent can cast a reasonable doubt, then you do not win.
ďOf course, one side not winning does not automatically confer victory on the other. That side must present its case as well, also beyond a reasonable doubt.
ďIf neither sides wins? Then, I suppose this is not the final confrontation after all. I suppose that the world goes on about its business until the two sides think theyíre ready to try again.
ďYou might be tempted to end this all with violence, destroy your opponent and myself and be done with it. I know the thought occurred to me as well. Destroying your enemy does not bring you victory. Iíd think that all recorded history proves that point but one or the other of you might believe that simply erasing us gives you the victory. Youíre welcome to try, of course. Canít stop you as a matter of fact. Can only advise you that if you do then Iím pretty certain that three more just like us will be meeting some time in the future to try again.Ē
ďSo, who wants to start?Ē
October 31st, 2003, 07:33 PM
Iíll have a stab at it; leave the mopping up to the angels. Settle down, old son. Have a drink. Make yourself comfortable. This will take some time.
The contest between good and evil Ė and listen to the knowing smirk from side of the angels Ė is within you. You have choices to make; your own choices. Somehow, some time, the bits and pieces of you became alienated, one from the other. Each time you evaluated some behavior, some thing, you built up in yourself conclusions that felt good or didnít feel good but you kept at it. You couldnít help it. Your family, your friends, your community forced you to make choices, day in, day out.
You watched your neighbor live differently than you and another neighbor different from both of you and another different from all of you. How many ways are there to live your life? you asked, then tried to answer.
Asking produced answers. We, the angels and the demons, are the answers, simplified, made easier to deal with. Simplification yields polar opposites because that is as simple as simple gets. Polar opposites get assigned names to keep them straight in your mind, left side-right side, positive-negative, good-evil, angels-demons. Voila, we exist!
Existing, we are susceptible to analysis. You talk to your family and friends, tell them the answers you have found; ask what they have found. Of a sudden, itís a popularity contest. We not only exist, we become laden with emotion. Donít be surprised, why should we be any different than you?
But who are we? And why must you choose?
We are you. You cannot choose to be other than you.
Think of yourself as a continuum of possible behaviors, a sliding scale. Take an act, any act, and place it on the scale. Any act. Take ďpicking your nose.Ē Good or evil? In and of itself, good or evil? Make it good and picture Tokyo station with its millions of people passing through at any given moment. Picture half of them picking their nose. Come on, now, really. It relieves a pressure, an itch, some discomfort for each person. They all carry handkerchiefs to accept the refuse. End of picture, yes? Ah, but you shudder. The sight of half-million people picking their nose sends shudders of revulsion through you making it very difficult for you to contemplate nose picking as good.
But, you engage in the activity, donít you? When you satisfy yourself that no one else can observe, you do so and take secret pleasure in the doing. Why? Because you are sinning and sinning is somehow pleasurable? You wonít stop doing it but youíll be happy to admit itís wrong. Picking your nose has been assigned a place on your continuum, my end of the spectrum. Pleasure just became suspect.
Eliminating waste conforms to the precise pattern of picking your nose. Waste stinks. Why does it stink? Because it is dangerous to your health and the stench is a warning signal that you cannot miss? Seems as likely as any other explanation, doesnít it? Dangerous to your health, to your survival. But you canít stop eliminating waste. You donít want to stop. Blame it on natural body functions, base functions, animal functions, survival functions. It feels good because thatís the only way to make you do it, right? Otherwise, youíd avoid eliminating waste Ė even though doing so would kill you.
Is it good or evil? Among you, the diversity of opinion on this topic is stunning. From the women in DaNang who wade into the bay each morning to gossip the time away as they each eliminate the waste from their body, to the ritualized performances in the high society of New York and London. Our cultures assign the act to the continuum of good and evil. The same act receives different positions on the scale; some have it neutral; some have it at my end of the spectrum. Once youíve assigned it to a position on our continuum, watch what you do with it.
There is a man in a mid-sized town in Asia who walks the streets collecting human waste to take it outside the town to sell it to farmers. The name we give it changes now; it becomes night soil because it would seem that is the time when most residents who are not privileged with access to a sewer eliminate their waste making it ready for collection next the next day. The man walks the streets singing his warning of who he is and what he carries, a socially responsible behavior. The citizens give him room but watch their faces. They do not disdain this man; think he is less than they. He is man earning a living, no more, no less. Yet, think about your reaction. The man is making a shitty living! Literally. In your eyes, he just became less than human. In fact, he just became evil. If what he does is evil; then he is evil, right?
Now, you take this litany of right and wrong you have built in your mind to your friends and family, all these thousands of little judgments you have made. You find out who agrees with you and they become good and the others? Bad. Evil, arenít they? Because they judge things differently than you.
Now, we can get to the hordes and the apocalypse going on outside your door. There are six billion people running around this planet. Most of them have different ideas than you. Thatís terrifying, isnít it? Six billion people who think that the things you think are evil may not be; who think that the things you think are good are more problematic than that. Six billion demons ready to swoop down and force you to change your ideas. Thatís the apocalypse, learning you are not as right as you think you are, learning that six billion demons disagree. Not just in the big things but in all the little things you have demonized or sanctified. You have a right to be terrified that everything you stand for is going to be repudiated by someone who reached answers 180 degrees out from your answers. It is not possible to not be terrified.
In the early days of your history, when you found someone who thought differently than you did, you eliminated them. Now, you do it more figuratively than literally but you still fear that same result must be applied to you. It is simple justice; simple balancing the scales. And you know youíve been wrong; that six billion demons know you have been wrong.
Look out your door. Here we come.