reviewed by Bodwyn Wook
MR Jack Vance, in The Grey Prince, deals with the whole suicidal business of late-modern abstract conception, and its hideous pitfalls, in a side-splittingly witty satire, esp of urbane liberalists; who dwell on some fifth or seventh (and, simpering!) level of removal from reality; who take fits over the ‘rights’ of a number of disparate alien groups with whom they share a planet; and, who get their hyper-credentiallised & non-productive, highly-academic-more-than-somewhat, arses, well, just kicked (and “massa-creed!” as the Americans would say) — by the very objects of their factitious benevolence….
AND, Mr Vance’s as-delightful Araminta Station trilogy (in which I, Bodwyn Wook, make my ‘first’ appearance!) rather draws a more-pointed parable about initially-uncontrolled immigration & its hazards; his sense of the ludicrous and tragic position of the tenured (and, thus, categorically un-free) theoretical class especially is poignant, inasmuch these lost souls resorted to helot-labour from abroad in the first place because of professionalist prejudice & a corresponding immature, or neurotic, aversion to dirty fingers.
AS A peaceable mahometan visionary student of sufism, I of course have seen beyond ‘the future’ and perceive (in the actions of imaginal work) that in fact (from L facere –‘to do’, or ‘to make’) all ‘already’ is well.
BUT, Alas, meanwhile we must continue to toil on this molecular level & in the deep faecal exudate of statistically-ordinary animal human being quite simply because ninety-nine per cent of the poor bastards honestly take their diurnal homeostases as ‘values’ and ‘higher’ feeling.
IN Face of this sort of ignorance, you among the readers who are agnostic, or indeed atheists, or who do not need religion, you are the cutting edge of a new post-humanity.
HOWEVER, Since this all is still at the very beginning, you will perhaps have an inkling when I tell you that your condition — in light of what awareness shall become, I mean — is, at present, awfully base & crude. Now, you must not go on the rag & foam at the mouth unduly over this embarrassing-enough circumstance, however, as I would wish you to know also that in an n-dimensional set-up you in fact are being envisioned & given free creative powers, as much as you can handle I mean, by a variety of workers at different points, both in the past & future — they are akin to so many station-masters on the way and, outwardly, are employed in a variety of workaday-roles. As well as number who have their being among the Hopi Indians & the tibetan Buddhists, two are with Genghis Khan; and, the US Justice department of President Woodrow Wilson is a surprising hot-bed of these types. They mainly function in many situations as impedimentia.
(CURIOUSLY, At present, none are within scores of miles of Whitehall, or hundreds of miles of the american federal district — this is one of those periods that so to speak has to be written off as an ‘action-field’ for any co-ordinated outward work directly on public circumstances.)
A Good book that conveys an image of much of this, indeed, is Way Station, by sf-writer Clifford D Simak. If you should happen to obtain and read a copy, please, afterward do not think about it over-much & in time the analogy being presented will suddenly ‘pop’ into understanding. In any case, the stationmaster-role is prophylactic and you need not be afraid for the long-term — you have enough work on your hands as it is & as the serious non-religionists you are (and it is your temperamental duty to be!) in meeting the terror of everyday as humanistically & morally well as possible, without depending on any divinities. All of the ‘gods’ and spirits and all of that ilk, all of these are all for you nevertheless & beneath all of the apparent deceptions of outward opposition is — unity. And, I am telling you in so many words, you are being taken care of:
SO, Now, disbelieving this as you must (except in the one per cent or so of your minds that are directly accessible to other times); now go forward bravely & saying ‘it is not so’; and, then, we will sure help you, amin.
s/Bodwyn Wook, CC [retd], Cadwal Conservancy, Cadwal Planet & IPCC-affiliate [emeritus]
[Emmett R Smith all rights reserved 29 May 2007]