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A Tale of Two Deserts

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A Tale of Two Deserts

Enigmatic Christmas Fables for the Modern Age

Paul T Kidd
ISBN 978-1-901864-16-8 (Paperback)
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Extract

 

The Desert

 

There is more here than just words, and more to the words than just mere words; and of deserts, what can be said? Here now find, in words spoken in silence, learning, understanding, and wisdom, for deserts are places where life prospers, even though at times it can seem to some, those perhaps who judge too much based on appearances, that there is no life. Yet there are deserts, not of natural origin you must understand, where life most definitely does not flourish. Yet even in such places, there is still hope for life.

 

This matter aside, let me proceed to my tale of the desert literal; that place of sun, heat, and features most beautiful. Here life, in that which is nature’s creation, can be both cruel and kind, but life does prosper nevertheless. Now see for yourself and learn that here, in this place of hardships, those who dwell in the desert world have little in the way of material comforts, and, in the age to which we now journey, through the power of imagination, even less so than today. Not here will you find any mark of modern civilisation, or extensive knowledge of the universe, that is, ironically, not extensive at all. All this is yet to come, lying thousands of years ahead, in a future that no one could possibly have foreseen, or perhaps they did, but nobody wanted to listen and to take note that there were aspects of this future that should not be.

 

To what do I refer? This you must discover for yourself, for in the end there are aspects to life, to the universe, and what lies beyond, that cannot be told. All I can do is to help you in this process of discovery, in this most important of life’s tasks, and in the pages that follow, you will find the way-markers that I have left for you to help you on this journey. Look out for these signposts, for they are not always as obvious as you might think, they being, I must tell you, part of a language that most people today no longer know, but which, in the time to which I now take you, is part of the natural order of life.

 

One matter though that I must address before unfolding for you this enigmatic tale of the desert is that of recounting to you what people of the desert in this now distant age did have; most of that which matters!

 

Here I speak of that which in the contemporary world is all too often sacrificed for the sake of economic growth and personal prosperity, these two goals being very much interlinked. And of that which matters, love is central, not just love for one another, but for the living world that people in this desert still know they are a part of, and which they still respect. There is also service; not what you think of as service, of a person being paid to provide some labour, but of people working together, helping one another, and, in doing so, creating a community that endures. Happiness can also be found, along with the understanding that material possessions are not the source of this happiness, only a way of contributing to life’s comforts and helping to make the mechanics of the process of living a little easier. Finally, let us not forget that most intangible of concepts: time! In this desert literal, there is plenty of time, that which you, dear reader, most probably have little that you can call your own. And time to do what? What possibly could these people of a now long-past era have done with their time? This is indeed a question. Of course, it would have been time to think, to reflect, to explore one’s inner self, to acquire understandings that can only be attained through reflection and self-questioning, and, of course, time for those people that matter most to us. In short, all activities that consume time, and which represent a good use of that time; all that, in fact, many modern people have little time for. Now I drift to another type of desert, one that is figurative, where life does not flourish.

 

But back to the desert literal, and in such deserts, as in other wild and untamed places in the world, there is no better place for discovering oneself and learning the humility that comes from understanding our ignorance, out of which comes the true knowledge that we know in fact very little about matters most profound: ourselves and our purpose, and that of the universe in which we dwell. And perhaps the most profound of understandings is that this universe is a work of unfathomable complexity wrought by the hand of unfathomable complexity. The most important knowledge is to know that this is so, and to begin the quest to understand more, and to learn that such a journey can never have a final destination.
Here I feel I must explain, for it is an essential part of my story, and if you will for a moment allow me to digress, I think that you will, deep within you, within the core of your very being, in your soul, recognise an eternal truth, although your mind may rebel against it, which is also at the core of the truth.

 

What is the true nature of God, this hand of unfathomable complexity? Of course, in the modern era, this is a question not much considered, not even by organised religions, which have now become confined and restricted, as if caged, being also the prisoners of dogma, which to a large extent explains the former. For the most part, organised religions seem largely unable to influence, in a profound and positive way, the mainstream of life, this now being caught up mainly in matters of economic growth, and the delusion that we can know it all. And when religion does have a major impact, it is usually of the most negative kind. Religious beliefs are also now, in the western world, and increasingly so elsewhere, a very private matter, not at all discussed in the public sphere, and certainly not within the worlds of science, technology, economics and business. But there are places where the religions of God are still part of everyday life; yet even where this is the case, in the most fundamental form, there is no distinction from the western world, just different manifestations of the same ignorance that has closed in on fixed opinions, expressed as dogma, unleashing all sorts of evil masquerading as good. I am back once more to the impoverished world of the figurative desert; the one of man’s own making. It is forever manifesting itself in my tale!

 

But you may well say, of God and religion, good riddance! And I can see your point, for we have had enough of the madness that many of those who adhere to the religions of God bring to our world. But I did ask a question, did I not? What is the true nature of God? You think that the people of these religions know the answer to this question? They do not, and far too many of them do not recognise this, hence the lunacy to which I just referred! And the degree to which you care about this question at all, or to which you may be offended by such a statement about religious people’s ignorance of God, is a measure of how far you have moved from the true nature of being human.

 

This is all I will say for now on this question, but be in no doubt that, of this matter, more will be said, for it is a theme most important to a future that should be, and of avoiding one that must not be.

 

You are perhaps a little mystified. Maybe you do not see the full relevance of my digression. Did I not say that some way-markers are ...

 

 

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