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Chapter XVI

1. FOR eighteen years more God spake not to Brahma, but Brahma remained faithful, and Yu-tiv was full of hope. But when the time was fulfilled in Ormazd's own way, He came with renewed light, which was on the twenty-first birthday of Hog.

2. Whilst Brahma and his fmaily were seated on mats, eating breakfast at sunrise, lo, a light, as of a sun, came within the hut, and passed over Brahma's head, and then disappeared. And out of the void, in the space above their heads, came these words, to wit: From this time forth the twenty-first birthday shall be the time of maturity for man. Be ye watchful for the voice of Ormazd; He is Ever Present!

3. And all of them saw the light and heard the words, save Hog, and Hog, having been begotten in unbelief, neither saw the light nor heard the voice. And when they all had exclaimed: Behold the light! Hear that voice!--Hog thus spake before them:

4. For many a year ye have prophesied this should come to pass when I should reach my twenty-first birthday. For the love ye all bear me, I know ye would not put a joke upon me; but I am seriously grieved that ye say: Behold the light, and hear the voice! For I say unto you, these things are not in reason, and cannot be so. But in much hope and faith and belief, all of which ye have cultivated for years, ye suffer your imaginings to stand for realities.

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5. Now whilst Hog thus spake, the light came again and stood over Brahma's head whilst one might count twenty; and the Voice said: Blessed art thou, O Brahma; blessed thou, O Yu-tiv! These things had to be fulfilled. I preach not by reason alone, but provide living examples! (In his old age Brahma had atained iesu!)

6. Again all of them saw and heard the manifestation of Ormazd, save Hog, and he saw not, and heard not what came of the Spirit. Hog said: Have I not eyes good as the best? Show me a hair that I cannot see; let fall a mite that I cannot hear. Then Whe-ish, the first-born, answered him, saying:

7. First, my brother, I greet thee with my love, for thou art the fairest and best of all the great born sons of this God and Goddess, our father and mother. And I appeal to thee in thy great wisdom, how have we all imagined the same light at the same time and place? And greater yet, how have we imagined the same spoken words? Hog replied:

8. How can my answers cope with one who hath wisdom like unto thee, O my brother? Thou hast confounded me; but yet I understand not wherein thou, and ye, my most loving brothers, can see and hear things that I cannot. Have we not all the same parts, so like unto one another that our neighbors scarce distinguish us? And above all, we are all the same fruit from a father and mother, the holiest and wisest of created beings.

9. Now spake Yu-tiv saying: I am before Thy judgment, O Ormazd! That which I have done, I have done! Deal Thou with me for my great unbelief; I have sinned against heaven and earth. Even whilst Thou quickenedst into life within my womb this star of everlasting light, lo, I put out his eyes and stopped up his ears against Thee. The unbelief of my soul penetrated the walls of my womb and shaped the fruit of my holy husband into a man of darkness. O Ormazd, why was Thy daughter born!

10. Hog said: O thou Goddess, mother! Weep not, but rejoice for the glory of my birth. That thou and my holy father, a very God amongst men, brought me into life, my soul is boundless in rejoicing. I declare unto thee, O mother, I am not in darkness, nor am I blind and deaf. If there be p. 349b another world, what mattereth it to me? The glories of this one are boundless. And if there be a Great Light and a Voice, what are they to me! Thou hast so filled my every vein of blood with thy warm love, and with the sweet love of these, my holy brothers, and with the wisdom of my father, God of men, that I know nothing but to rejoice and to invent praises and thanks to you all, with all my wisdom and strength.

11. And now the Light gathered within the soul of Brahma, and he was as one with the Father. Ormazd, the Creator, then spake through Brahma, saying:

12. I created the earth not to be despised, as do the Zarathustrians through the hearts of monarchs and priests, but that it should be the glory of man. This was the Zarathustrian law, but, for sake of profit, and bondage, and evil, they have perverted My doctrines and bound up My peoples. They profess Me, even Ormazd; but they have turned My commandments and My doctrines upside down.

13. I came through Zarathustra and delivered them that called on Me in faith; and they became My chosen for a season; but they suffered evil to usurp their hearts; they squandered My substance in building temples and providing a superabundance of priests and priestesses. They raised up the sword and spear for me; by blood and death they established kingdoms and called them by My name, Ormazd!

14. The spirit of My Voice they put aside; but the words they retained, and added earthly meaning thereto. Whereby they proclaim darkness for light, and light for darkness. And the poor and distressed that worship Me in truth and spirit have learned to hate the words established. For which reason they are persecuted, and bound, and taxed, and despitefully used.

15. Yea, they that would kill not because of their natural love to Me and My created sons and daughters, they impress into service of war, taking them from their kindred, saying to them: Come away from peace and kill! Be thou a slayer of men; be a soldier of death for the glory of the king.

16. I commanded them, in the olden time, to kill not at all. My words were plain. But the kings commanded the priests to interpret My words round about, whereby war might be justified.

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17. I commanded them against taking that which was another's. My words were plain. But the kings commanded the priests to interpret the meaning, so the kings could exact tribute for their own glory. And so they levy wheresoever and whensoever they will, saying: For the defense of the king and the country!

18. Thus have they perverted My commandments from beginning to end. But I declare unto you, that in My sight, to kill one man, I will hold him accountable who doeth it; and ten times accountable if he kill ten men, and a hundred times for a hundred. They shall not hide death and murder from My sight by the word war.

19. Neither shall they excuse stealing by levying tax for the king or the country's protection. For by their own evil, hath it come to pass that they talk about protection. Have I made a law that one king or one country shall protect itself against another? Seest not any man that these doctrines come of the flesh and not of the spirit?

20. They profess to be Faithists in Me. But straight away they go and build fortifications of earth, and stone, and wood. And they that know Me in spirit and truth, perceiving I am wrongly interpreted for evil's sake, being such as rebel in their souls against these iniquities, they seize and impress for their lifetime as slaves, or, if refusing, they kill them.

21. And they that work such wickedness say: Behold, we have the Zarathustrian law, the I'hua'Mazdian law, the Ormazdian law; ours is the holy, the revealed word. Let no man raise up his voice against these truths, or he shall surely be put to death!

22. But I looked down from My holy heavens and saw, and Mine ears heard; and I cried out in My soul for the evils of the earth. I said: Behold, I will go and deliver them that have faith in Me in spirit and truth. And I went over the lands of the earth, but I found no man in whom My light could shine. And I called My holy masters of generations, My angels high raised in heaven, and I said unto them: Come ye and dwell on the earth many generations, and by inspiration raise ye up one in whom My light shall shine, for I will surely deliver My people.

23. Now I declare unto you who are p. 351b assembled, the time is at hand, and ye are all so many parts in My work. Even through My angels named ye these sons; according to their names, so will I establish My kingdom.

24. Suffer, therefore, Vede to write down the words I have spoken, for lo, he hath learning and memory provided to that end. Be ye watchful, when I come again!

25. Jehovih (Ormazd) ceased, and Brahma woke as from a trance, though he had heard all that was said. So Vede remembered the spoken words, every one, and he wrote them down on cloth prepared for that purpose. And this was the beginning of a new name of a people on the earth, though they were Faithists in fact, and nothing but Faithists; but they were called by their neighbors sometimes Vedans and sometimes Brahmins.

Next: Chapter XVII