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Friday, October 19, 2018

Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Forty, Faith; Chapter Five, Belief


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 292, Friday
October 19th, 2018

Chapter Five: Belief

His life was filled with contradictions, and he had never before been so conflicted, so filled with doubt.

He spent his days promoting the beliefs and traditions and rituals of the Imperial cult. He was the most eloquent spokesperson the masses ever witnessed.

He spoke with power and confidence, elegantly articulating the complex narratives that glued the Imperial society together providing the rationale and the justification for each citizen to remain in their caste, in their class, in their state of bondage.

He was a living exemplar of the faith, perfectly demonstrating to every citizen, even to the outcast, the possibility of elevating themselves from their station, through fidelity, duty, and adherence to the law.

He learned that the promises concerning reincarnation, and the Continuum, all of those promises that had been made to the people, were built on lies, the most pernicious kind of lies, a vast complex of falsehoods, predicated on the narrowest sliver of truth.

He did his duty.

He perpetuated the lies anyway.

The powers that held him in check did not do so with the threat of coercion. Everyone he had ever known or loved while he was an ordinary man, they were long since dead and buried.

His family had been erased.

They held him in check with the power of love, the promise of fulfilling his desires, the mystery of beauty and the touch of a woman.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Thursday, October 18, 2018

Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Forty, Faith; Chapter Four, Mystery


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 291, Thursday
October 18th, 2018

Chapter Four: Mystery

The priestly caste was organized according to rank, like every other strata of Imperial society. The major divisions in the priestly caste were between the ruling houses and the minor officiants, between the parish priests and the holy orders.

This differentiation was not unlike the differentiation between managers and staff in the bureaucracy, or between the rank and file and command in the military.

The unseen difference, a difference unknown outside the select circle, was the society of Observers, those members of the Continuum who had opted to live out lives in time and space, observing the day to day realities of the Empire, for the Collective and its Continuum.

While it was the case that Observers were scattered throughout the Empire and held posts in every strata of society, most Observers preferred to carry out their mission from the vantage of the priestly caste, and the royal houses.

Nothing was hidden from them, because they knew the full truth concerning the origins of the Empire, The Continuum, its promises and their lies.  

Many of the Observers were eager to interact with the hero/priest the guardian of the faithful.

He was indoctrinated into the deepest mysteries of the Imperium.

He discovered the mechanism of salvation, the translation of consciousness into the quantum field which brought eternal life in the Continuum as a member of the Collective.

He learned that the Imperial rites meant nothing, they were based on lies, they were minor dramas perpetuated as a means of controlling the people; controlling them through hope, and fear, through love and hate, which were the only meaningful controls, controls which never failed, controls that surpassed even thirst, hunger and pain.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Forty, Faith; Chapter Three, Rites


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 290, Wednesday
October 17th, 2018

Chapter Three: Rites

He took all of the rituals seriously, as he did everything during his career.

He carried them out perfectly even though his studies revealed them to be nothing but tools of control and division.

He fulfilled them with grace, and a presence that gave no indication of the fact that he knew they were empty gestures, and meaningless incantations.

The comfort that he had with his body, developed through his long years of martial discipline, gave his performances a nuance that his peers were unable to match.

Once again he stood out from those around him, not only because of the attention that was focused on him, but for what he brought to each moment.

While he no longer believed in the mysteries as they had been taught to him, he understood that the cohesion of the Empire, the peace of a million worlds, relied on them for everything.

While the imperial families, the royal powers, the priestly caste and the war machine cared nothing at all for justice, intrinsically viewing any person below them in rank as a thing to be used, a device or a tool; justice, if it was to be had, had to be distributed from the top.

He performed the rites with that in mind. He bound people to the commitments expressed in them in ways that had never been seen before, in ways that were not remembered.

When members of the Imperial family came to the table, drawn by his fame, he extracted promises from them in the sacred space, which they could not then refuse.

In the place where his life was most regimented, he found the freedom to return to his old self.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Winter Queen


A clear frozen pool
Reflecting heaven’s bounty
Mirroring the stars

Quiet at twilight
The numbing hand of winter’s
Icey fingers stretch

Capturing with cold
A slowly breaking heart, stops
The pulsing starlight

Blinking in the night
Turbulent waters, now still
The wind blows across

In this plane of glass
The Queen of Winter resides
Magic in the frost

Skin as white as death
Snowy soft, and smooth as silk
Lips bright as rubies

Her dark curls tumbling
Shining in the shadowed night
With forbidden fire

A spark of life, locked
Hidden within her breast, lost
To the trespasser

A lure for the dead
Frozen man at the lake shore
Snow up to his waist

Faded in the drift
Expiring in Winter’s grasp
Taken by Loreli

The Queen ascending
Ice blooms falling with her tears
Crystalline flowers

Graceful Loreli
Immaterial and pure
Elemental witch

She touches him, soft
His silent heart, and breathing still
A final offer

A coin for passage
The ancient nymph accepting
She takes it from him

The gift of heat, life
Guides him to the underworld
The divine moment

Slip below the plane
To pierce the shivering veil
Past the frosted screen

Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Forty, Faith; Chapter Two, Dogma


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 289, Tuesday
October 16th, 2018

Chapter Two: Dogma

He made his vows, and took to holy orders.

Of all the transitions he had made in his long sojourn, this was the first one that he questioned.

It did not feel natural or honest, the priestly class lived in a state of being that he never imagined when he was a child, when he lived a life of dismal-drudgery, as his family had done for countless generations.

Even the lowest order of priestly professions, in the lowest ranking priestly houses, lived exalted lives. The technologies available to them were like magic.

He ignored his reservations, and he immersed himself in the priesthood

He studied.

He memorized everything, which was not difficult for him.

His knowledge expanded, exponentially. The history of the Empire was exposed through the sacred texts, as much of the real history as was possible.

He absorbed all of the tracts, all the way back to the first contact that the Empire had with the Continuum.  

It fascinated him, and struck him cold.

The Continuum appeared to be less than divine, and more like an alien civilization.

The entire Empire was enslaved to it, sending vast tributes in minerals and technology to the Central System, which he learned was the physical location of the Continuum.

The people thought of them as the heavenly worlds, but they had a location in time and space.

Deep feelings were stirring inside him. Feelings he had not experienced since he had been resurrected.

He became aware of the reality of the Collective, as a force of consciousness behind Continuum, and the truth set him free.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Monday, October 15, 2018

Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Forty, Faith; Chapter One, Indoctrination


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 288, Monday
October 15th, 2018

Chapter One: Indoctrination

He was born into a family of plebians, free citizens, but in reality they were servants of the Empire in bondage to the Continuum.

He was an ordinary person, one of trillions whose lives were nothing special, not of note, they worked, went to school, worshipped and raised families.

He was a natural born empath, a capacity that had been engineered into his genetic line covertly, and he was the first in that line to manifest the ability.

He was a mutant, but his mutation was so subtle that it went unregistered.

He could not tolerate injustice.

He felt the suffering of everyone around him, and it hung on his neck like a stone.

He wanted nothing more than to give hope to the hopeless, and to free the despairing from despair.

Even as a child he found ways to rebel, to question the teachings of the Imperial cult, the indoctrination of the Imperial schools, the entire structure of the social order.

As an adult, he took up arms against the Empire, he fought the enemy wherever he could.

He became an outcast, a criminal, but for his gallantry the Continuum made him a star.

Then he was co-opted by it, executed and returned to life. It was a miracle for the masses. Afterward he entered service as a bureaucrat, then as a soldier, and finally as a priest.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Sunday, October 14, 2018

A Homily – Mark 10:17-30 ©


The Gospel According to Mark – 2018.10.14
                        

Do Good and Walk Justly


Listen!

Remember this, with God all things are possible.

The kingdom of heaven is not a kingdom in the earthly sense, rather it is the garden where we walk God, where we talk with God in friendship.

Listen to the wisdom of Jesus, no-one is good but God alone, we would all do well to emulate his humility.

Remember this, the wealthy young man does not refuse Jesus, he merely goes away sad because he has been asked to do something hard, and he knows it will be hard.

The gospel reading speaks of rewards in heaven for good deeds done in the here and now.

The truth is this; the good things we do in the here and now bring the eternal blessing into the present.

The garden is not beyond time and out of reach, the garden is present in the good things we do on behalf of each other, on behalf of the poor, the marginalized and the needy. It is only through service to one another, and the love we share here that we serve God and experience the divine.

Give no thought to what will come in the afterlife, everything will happen then, just as God wills it.

Concern yourself with the here and now, with doing good and serving living justly, in this way you will be a blessing to all the people.


Give Everything You Own to the Poor, and Follow Me

Jesus was setting out on a journey when a man ran up, knelt before him and put this question to him, ‘Good master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ Jesus said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: You must not kill; You must not commit adultery; You must not steal; You must not bring false witness; You must not defraud; Honour your father and mother.’ And he said to him, ‘Master, I have kept all these from my earliest days.’ Jesus looked steadily at him and loved him, and he said, ‘There is one thing you lack. Go and sell everything you own and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.’ But his face fell at these words and he went away sad, for he was a man of great wealth.

Jesus looked round and said to his disciples, ‘How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!’ The disciples were astounded by these words, but Jesus insisted, ‘My children,’ he said to them ‘how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.’ They were more astonished than ever. ‘In that case’ they said to one another ‘who can be saved?’ Jesus gazed at them. ‘For men’ he said ‘it is impossible, but not for God: because everything is possible for God.’

Peter took this up. ‘What about us?’ he asked him. ‘We have left everything and followed you.’ Jesus said, ‘I tell you solemnly, there is no one who has left house, brothers, sisters, father, children or land for my sake and for the sake of the gospel who will not be repaid a hundred times over, houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and land – not without persecutions – now in this present time and, in the world to come, eternal life.’


28th Sunday in Ordinary Time


Emergence 3.0 - Section Six, The Empire; Part Thirty-nine, Priest; Chapter Seven, Overseer


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 287, Sunday
October 14th, 2018

Chapter Seven: Overseer

With the blessing of the Collective, and by the favor of Continuum, he advanced in rank among the religious orders, and in the hierarchy of the priesthood.

He advanced despite his carnal crimes, or because of them.

It was a favorable development in the narrative of his life.

During his time in the priesthood his story had begun to tire. Thousands of intriguing dramas sprang up in relation to him.

Throughout the Empire millions of his followers took to extremes to demonstrate their love, and faith in him.

Planetary rebellion sprang to an all new high since the time he left military service, and now they were being carried out in his name. Rebel forces now included former members of the military caste who wanted to see him elevated to the Imperial throne.  

The details of these conflicts were not reported to him, he was aware of it and did what he could from his position in the priesthood to quell those conflicts, but he was no longer a general.

He was a monk and a priest, and he was in love, engaged with a member of a royal house in a passionate affair.

The Continuum loved the intrigue of his cover-ups.

They made him a Cardinal, in order to free him, to give him the space to develop his relationship and sink deeper into his desires.

The masses, knowing nothing of his transgressions, adored him even more.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Saturday, October 13, 2018

Take Care of Yourself - Editorial, The Week in Review


Analysis, Commentary, Opinion
10.13.2018


Take Care of Yourself


There are three weeks and three days to go before the election, I hope everyone participates.

Did you know that in Australia it is the law that every person has to vote. You get fined if you do not participate. As a result they have about 95% voter participation, and because of this most of their political parties pander to the center, and not to the fringes.

Let me be clear, there is a lot wrong with Australian culture. They are always ready to go to war, they are Eurocentric, they have a long history of committing crimes against indigenous people and minorities, but they also have Universal Health Care, and Universal access to Higher Education and many of the other things we would like to have hear, that would help our democracy function better, take café of the people better,

Voter participation is key to social justice in America. When the political parties know that they will be held accountable by all of us, all of the time, the wing nuts on the fringes will cease to hold the power that they do. Then and only then will we be able to influence public policy, to change its arc back toward justice.

We do not live in Australia, in America only half of the voters vote.

There are three weeks and three days to go before the election. Be mindful of this. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. Things may not go the way we want them to.

We have little control over what is going to happen, as individuals we have no say whatsoever, or we have our say, and that is just a drop in the bucket, we may as well try to influence the weather. We can do it if we act as a group, but left to our own devices none of us can do very much.

There are three weeks and three days to go before the election. Even if the electorate manages to deliver a stunning rebuke to T-Rump and the Republicans, it is not likely to change very much. We have to be prepared for that.

We have to vote, we have to do our part, but lately I have been reading the posts and comments left by my friends, little shout-outs expressing their frustration and even, for some, despair, and I am worried.

We have to take of ourselves and each other, listen empathetically, hold ourselves up and be prepared to move-on, whether or not we experience victory at the polls, whether or not we come away feeling defeated.

 If it is victory we have to move forward temperately and preserve those wins through the coming cycle, when redistricting occurs, at which point we can bring greater rationality to the electoral map.

If it is victory we can begin to investigate the crimes of this administration, and defund its corrupt initiatives, but we have to move temperately because there will be resistance at every turn. We have to play the hand we have until we have the cards we need, we cannot presume to impeach, or throw anyone out of office until we actually have the votes.

Speak up if you are suffering, ask for help when you need it, we are all in this thing together, though sometimes it might feel like you are all alone, you are not all alone.

We have decades in front, and we will walk through them together.

Take care of yourself.