My Dearest Alice,
I know always that I am an outsider; a stranger in this century and among those who are still men.
Yet I let myself forget this singular fact. Emotional attachments are folly; they distract us from our purpose and cause our intent to waver. They foster doubt and hesitation, which is ultimately fatal.
It’s psychological doctrine that any emotional bias – irrespective of truth or falsity – can be implanted by suggestion in the emotions of the young, hence the inherited traditions of an orthodox community are absolutely without evidential value. If religion were true, its followers would not try to bludgeon their young into an artificial conformity; but would merely insist on their unbending quest for truth, irrespective of artificial backgrounds or practical consequences. With such an honest and inflexible openness to evidence, they could not fail to receive any real truth which might be manifesting itself around them. The fact that religionists do not follow this honourable course, but cheat at their game by invoking juvenile quasi-hypnosis, is enough to destroy their pretensions in my eyes even if their absurdity were not manifest in every other direction.
Religion is still useful among the herd mind you – that it helps their orderly conduct as nothing else could. The crude human animal is in-eradicably superstitious, and there is every biological reason why they should be. Take away his Christian god and saints, and he will worship something else. Farrin and her people suffice to prove that, with their inherent belief in the multitude of spirits and ancestors they hold as sacred. Some small fanciful part of me wishes that they welcomed her into their bosom when she died.
I can’t shake the idle thought that we are somehow more than the sum of our biological and chemical processes. My encounter with that device that seemed to pry more than my consciousness from my body is still foremost on my mind. I wonder if Farrin is in fact in some better place, some other-dimensional hereafter. Preposterous as it may seem.
Contrary to what you may assume, I am not a pessimist when it comes to cosmic and spiritual matters, but an indifferentist- that is, I don’t make the mistake of thinking that the cosmos gives a damn one way or the other about the especial wants and ultimate welfare of mosquitoes, rats, lice, dogs, men, horses, pterodactyls, trees, fungi, dodos, or other forms of biological energy.
Yes, I was fond of her. She spared my life on more than one single occasion, and she was staunch and brave and loyal and all that rot. But she was also a friend.
I should have never allowed her to be so. Any more than I allowed myself to grow so close to you my sister. I’m quite certain that anyone that forms any reasonable attachment to me will meet a most gruesome end. While I stand helplessly by, unable to spare them or change the course of their fate.
I’ll not forget the blood-curdling scream and the horrid sound of rending sinew and flesh. I’m getting used to awfulness. It’s abhorrent.
The others will all find a similar demise. And I’m cursed to witness each one in turn. I have no doubt of it. Like some vile Metatron, slated to chronicle every grisly moment. For I cannot bear to be alone, nor can I allow anyone to be close. From even the greatest of horrors irony is seldom absent I suppose.
I still love and adore you my sister. I hope you rest peacefully by the ancient elm under which we played as children in the far green country.
Sincerely, Prince Duada