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the mountain that moved (part three)

December 8, 2015
Daniel walked the city streets for an hour. The language of the town remained oblique. Why he felt he might find answers to the question of a “happy couple” terrorizing a community center then engaging in a suicidal shoot-out with law enforcement was absurd. This, he knew; he knew it could not be seen through the eye alone. The eye merely held a glimpse of life, any life. Also, this was the east coast; the terror happened in the west. But sand was sand, he offered in reply, and hadn’t the east already experienced a similar horror. And why shouldn’t he find an ounce of truth here? If he listened carefully, wouldn’t he hear the silver knocking about in the inner temple? Then he saw it: a memory. First, it was of the opinion of others that the couple was happy, and summed up as  … the happy couple. The owner of the temple was happy as he had fulfilled his task, and had likely made money from it. Parents of the bride and groom were happy that child had married into the right religion. Didn’t it make things easier? It was the world’s view through various sources, but not necessarily the truth on the matter. In reality, for husband and wife, it was a preparation for the command. Together they would enter their kingdom of eternal glory, having avenged their prophet. Daniel believed that happiness had nothing to do with their marriage, at least not in this life. This life was a mandate to act on the offenses of others. Other was an offense, especially if it chose another prophet to entertain.
Daniel’s memory was of a man sitting on a rock wall. Daniel had passed him—what? three years ago? Their eyes met, and the man offered his sentiments on the rule of the day:
Go forth and proclaim the kingdom of truth.
Truth. Wasn’t this the calling for every man? to proclaim something expedient. something counter to the wrath of a wicked world? but how wicked was this world? Vague—yes; it helped itself in these troubled times but … didn’t hypocrisy ring out? clanging and mangling … loud enough that even the most insulated could hear its compulsiveness? Again, the answer, he felt, lives within the opinions of mankind. If mankind could look into the lives of those advocating hypocrisy, he might change his mind on the rule of happiness.
Daniel had often longed for a companion. Song had never been enough, and the hypocrisy that pervaded his world within the life of his church, a church with a history of abuse, torture, even murder, eradicating the happiness of others while claiming itself truth,  hid itself in sacrament after sacrament. Even his own title was a blatant disregard for the challenge on truth. He knew this. It, too, was a form of suicide. How much longer he would be engaging in a shoot-out with a higher authority, pretending he could win on the streets of mediocrity, was a growing cell. Did he have the right to murder others because of their wickedness? What punishment was he called to force others to feed on? Ah, thought Daniel, this is where my prophet differs from the Islamic couple; mine is not found in the murdering of others. There is no truth in killing what you do not understand. Would this not be sheer ignorance? But who determines the life in a society overflowing with opinions? opinions crashing into other opinions where the most vulnerable are left in the dust, forgotten, ignored … only pulled from the wickedness of the world to be used to serve itself. Opinions were martyrs and mayhem, thought Daniel, who can justify a single ethical stance based on opinion alone? Would this not be what Jesus meant in the story of his disciples going out in twos? Take nothing with you … In other words, leave your opinions at home where you can feed on these in private. Ah, yes, breathed Daniel, even Paul warns on this in his discourse regarding the eucharist. Daniel was beginning to question his intellect on the source of truth in a society just now recognizing the pandemic where church and state in a democratic society come face to face demanding answers.  It asks who determines the right and wrong on opinion.
Daniel found himself standing at the stone wall, the same wall in his memory. There were a few on that wall, plinking away on their phones. They did not even notice him standing there looking at them. Daniel turned and headed toward Main Street. What if I had been a terrorist with a gun, he wondered, would these people see it coming? Of course not. Their time exists in what manifests itself within that rectangular apparatus they hold dear. Daniel immediately thought of the man named Dear. He shook his head in dismay. Ugh, another caught up in acting out a mental disillusionment, however … Dear’s seemed an act of long term mental illness whereas the Islamic terrorist couple was of mental business. It had become their business to avenge their prophet. It had become their command to punish what did not agree with their teaching on truth. What was ethical to their belief system had taught them that theirs was the correct faculty. This was no ordinary evil using the loner struggling with various addictions, abuses and loss of mental capacity to reason his way through his annoyances and hardships; this, Daniel believed, was a veil of systemic allowances that permeated the senses … creating a _________________________






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