Eucharist for a Sinless Mankind
by Bertil Falk
“Requiem for an Android”|
appeared in issues
248 and 249.
Chapter 2: The Not-Sinning Ones
part 7 of 7
Mother Saulcerite of the planet Bavaria is now a Cardinal and head of the Bureau of Salvation. She is well regarded and may become Pope. However, a new test awaits her: Brother Urbanus Collectus is assigned to aid her in the investigation of a newly discovered species near Betelgeuse. The species is sentient but has not tasted of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.
The intelligent ‘spiral galaxy’ transported Saulcerite and Urbanus Collectus to a mountain that most of all looked like a terrestrial termitary. The simile was apposite, for this enormous croquembouche, which rose a thousand meters above the coral-reef-like surroundings, was simply a huge dwelling, pierced like a Swiss cheese in an infrastructure that was totally confusing.
They landed up on a balcony, where the being that had brought them there took off the spiral galaxy, which was revealed to be a shell or garment.
The being they now faced swelled up like an entity who looked like a cut diamond that glittered in the shine from the giant red sun moving across the sky. It was, however, not a diamond but rather something that reminded of iridescent fish scales.
To begin with, it seemed as if all the ‘diamonds’ in this terrific anthill were identical copies of each other. If that were the case, their combined status as a mankind could be questioned. But thanks to her subcutaneous biometric ability, Saulcerite observed that they were as different from each other as fingerprints of Earthlings. After a while her triangles got so accustomed to them that she could distinguish individual traits that stood out more and more.
Like many other mankinds, this was a race with a head, and in its face one could discern eyes. But this species lacked a mouth. Perhaps there was an olfactory organ. A bulge might be interpreted as being one. These entities obviously used some unknown form of telepathy, possibly a kind of induction, for both Saulcerite and Urbanus Collectus could “perceive” their “speech” as feelings: warm, friendly sensations that made them happy.
The extremities were of a universal, normal kind: two arms with seizing pieces and two sturdy legs for transportation. Obviously they were naked, except when leaving the hill. Then they took on spiral galaxies. Their universal nakedness was another indication that the Fall of Man had passed over this particular species of mankind.
Saulcerite, who from the very beginning had turned on the foremost aid of the Bureau, the sin indicator, could easily establish that there was no sinfulness to detect, except what she herself and her companion emitted. Instead of a sine curve of sin, the indicator drew a curve of goodness. Although the curve fluctuated, it never came close to the borderline between goodness and wickedness, between sin and sinlessness.
It was like the difference between photons and tachyons. While photons could never travel faster than light, tachyons could never travel below the speed of light. Photons are photons, and tachyons are tachyons, and the two phenomena always meet without touching each other at the cut-off point where the speed of light is its summit and the speed of darkness is its bottom.
This being was sinless.
The strength of this goodness was totally astounding. The more beings they met, the more manifest it became that they were impregnated with friendship, consideration, and goodness. The long discussions Saulcerite and Urbanus Collectus held with representatives of this species yielded amazing results.
It was impossible to make the Not-Sinning Ones understand words like ‘murder’ and ‘theft’. War was another concept they could not explain to the diamonds or make them understand. Theft had for them such an incomprehensible unknown verbal quality that even the lesser forms of pilfering and pinching things were incomprehensible. Anything that had to do with evil, malevolence, greed, cheating, bloodthirtiness, jealousy, enviousness and crime was without precedent in their society.
Even though ownership and a market economy existed, ethical training courses for executives were not necessary. If there was a profit to be made, it was made for others, not for oneself.
Everyone assisted everyone, nobody harmed anyone. It was the mutual aid of Prince Pyotr Kropotkin put into practice. It happened, of course, that a being might be harmed by accident in Nature, but then everyone available intervened and gave their lives without hesitation to assist the individual who had been harmed. The persons who behaved in this way were not particularly appreciated for their efforts; they did not become saints. They had done only what was supposed to be natural.
Still they all had individual traits and their own distinguishing features. Saulcerite got on especially intimate terms with Xäzyåwä, a well-cut diamond for her species. With intellectual clarity and great interest she tried in vain to understand the meaning of notions like sin and evil.
Xäzyåwä did, however, admit to experiencing a sensation of something unknown and frightening with the two visitors, but Xäzyåwä could not for the life of her grasp what it all was about.
On the other hand, they soon found a common ground when it came to the word “love” in the sense of agape. For sure, neither the word ‘love” nor “agape” existed in the language of the diamonds, but it had some kind of indefinable correspondence in the concept varelse, which turned out to mean being, person, people, individual, Gestalt, and similar words.
The word “varelse” seemed to have a meaning close to the concept of “brotherly human feeling.” Thus, the meaning of the word “varelse” was almost identical to something like what the Christians had talked about ever since the crucifixion of Jesus Christ but certainly had not always stuck to.
But as soon as Saulcerite tried to have Xäzyåwä imagine the opposite of love — hatred — the lesson failed. Xäzyåwä was not able to imagine that being / mankind / love could stand in contrast to anything at all.
Hatred was totally unthinkable in this environment, in this culture, in this mocking strangeness of Nature on a tiny good-for-nothing planet bathed in the rosy-glistening shine from a red star in an ocean of planetoids.
Cardinal Saulcerite experienced this love without hatred as a threat towards the Church, the Faith, towards the great plan of God. Had something gone wrong on this planet when God created evolution here? What was it that basically separated this mankind from other mankinds? Was it not a mankind at all, but a reflection in an existential funny mirror in a cosmic amusement park?
Or were these ‘diamonds’ a prototype for existence in the post-most Last Judgement? How were they structured? How had they evolved? What kind of DNA was there to study? Did they even have DNA?
The question marks accumulated as Mother Saulcerite took a cat nap in an alcove behind the balcony, while Brother Urbanus continued his conversation with their new friends.
Copyright © 2008 by Bertil Falk