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The Book of the Damned

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Author Topic: The Book of the Damned  (Read 3545 times)
Dusk
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« Reply #15 on: April 21, 2009, 01:23:19 pm »

Red rains.

Orthodoxy:

Sand blown by the sirocco, from the Sahara to Europe.

Especially in the earthquake regions of Europe, there have been many falls of red substance, usually, but not always, precipitated in rain. Upon many occasions, these substances have been "absolutely identified" as sand from the Sahara. When I first took this

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matter up, I came across assurance after assurance, so positive to this effect, that, had I not been an Intermediatist, I'd have looked no further. Samples collected from a rain at Genoa—samples of sand forwarded from the Sahara—"absolute agreement" some writers said: same color, same particles of quartz, even the same shells of diatoms mixed in. Then the chemical analyses: not a disagreement worth mentioning.

Our intermediatist means of expression will be that, with proper exclusions, after the scientific or theological method, anything can be identified with anything else, if all things are only different expressions of an underlying oneness.

To many minds there's rest and there's satisfaction in that expression "absolutely identified." Absoluteness, or the illusion of it—the universal quest. If chemists have identified substances that have fallen in Europe as sand from African deserts, swept up in African whirlwinds, that's assuasive to all the irritations that occur to those cloistered minds that must repose in the concept of a snug, isolated, little world, free from contact with cosmic wickednesses, safe from stellar guile, undisturbed by inter-planetary prowlings and invasions. The only trouble is that a chemist's analysis, which seems so final and authoritative to some minds, is no more nearly absolute than is identification by a child or description by an imbecile—

I take some of that back: I accept that the approximation is higher—

But that it's based upon delusion, because there is no definiteness, no homogeneity, no stability, only different stages somewhere between them and indefiniteness, heterogeneity, and instability. There are no chemical elements. It seems acceptable that Ramsay and others have settled that. The chemical elements are only another disappointment in the quest for the positive, as the definite, the homogeneous, and the stable. If there were real elements, there could be a real science of chemistry.

Upon Nov. 12 and 13, 5902, occurred the greatest fall of matter in the history of Australia. Upon the 14th of November, it "rained mud," in Tasmania. It was of course attributed to Australian whirlwinds, but, according to the Monthly Weather Review, 32-

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