I don’t think that I’ll ever truly believe it. Believe anything that happened in the coming years, but I think this was where I touched the cusp of something bordering on faith.
There was nothing. Nothing in what we were doing, aside from the practicable psychological insight gleaned from what was for lack of a better word ‘the unconscious.’ The purpose was clear and determinedly martial in aspect.
We wanted to gain mastery of certain shadows and drives to help steer our nation and the world toward a better future. But there was certainly no actual magic, no actual divinity, just animal impressions that need to be harnessed and understood.
Yet here I was starting to get touched by it. It was like an infection and there were too many things to deny. But what’s the use of taking on undeniable things that make no sense? What are you even on about at that point?
I took a swig.
“Well, really we view him as part of a procession. A certain lineage beginning with Hermes Trismegistus, titrating into John Dee, and finally in the age of Aquarius forming the more tangible 20th-century psychoanalyst.”
“Oh, and what does all that have to do with the United States military?”
“Well..it’s a way for folk like us to earn a salary..but really I suppose it wouldn’t hurt for you to know…you’re going to be dead soon…and no one is going to believe or care if you talk…we consider ourselves shepherds.”
“Yes, shepherds tasked with the most bizarre and psychedelic sort of sheep one can imagine, humans.”
“That’s a bit Orwellian.”
“Oh, we know, but what’s the alternative? Entropy is the state of nature and idiots in the original Greek sense, sated by bread and circus, will never assume the full responsibility of citizenship, the history of education bears this out.”
“So you don’t subscribe to the Jeffersonian ideal?”
“I do, I do think it important to inform, but informing, educating, these things are slow, and in the meantime, we’ve had monarchs, and warlords, and Nazis, and we’re not keen on that sort of thing, you see.”
“So what does all this voodoo have to with any of what you’re proposing?”
“Well, human beings are not rational animals, not truly rational, no, the chief mechanic of our reason is analogy. The most powerful analogies are mythological in nature and there are all sorts of associations wrought through myth and various esoterica that drive to the heart of humanity. In weeding out exactly which myths, which fears, which hopes, are most efficacious we can use that knowledge to help steer the human enterprise towards a more promising future.”
The doctor laughed. “Better life through magic….?”
“And what if what you’re doin’s evil!” Jesse interjected.
Lucas responded with a verse: “Now in a great house, there are not only golden and silver vessels, but also wooden and earthen; and some indeed unto honor, but some unto dishonor. ..”
“Indeed,” I assented, “and I’m still uncertain of who is the earthen vessel. One could argue that the Methodists and the rest of the moral majority are quite hellbound. Living lives of excess luxury and pharisaical disdain off the labor of Chinese peasants and a rapacious foreign policy… sounds far more wicked then any grimoire Crowley could have compiled.”
Graham rose from his seat and wordlessly left the room.
There was an awkward silence.
“Should we follow him?” Fabre asked.
“Well, he might have just gone to the bathroom. Let’s see if he comes back.”
It was only a matter of minutes before Graham returned with a vinyl record in his hand.
1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe
1.2 The Cajun Prayer