In the final part of Magick of the Unfolding Series I receive a critique from a trusted adviser:
The Alchemist –
We’d been working two hours in subjective time when I called a break. The chorus had been laboring over chapter 6 with “concern – wistfulness – honor – planning” and merely rating it as, “It’s OK.”
God, I wish I knew how this was going to turn out!
The gray-bearded alchemist stopped on the left side of my desk and leaned on his rune-encrusted cane. He was almost twice as wide as me with wounds on a scale of magnitude many times greater my own. This man, who practiced Tai Chi and sword for six years before his life had taken a tragic twist, bent forward and glowered.
“You, Sir, are a fraud!”
Rising to give him my seat, I opened my hand and gestured he should take it.
Plunking his large frame into the Herman Miller Aeron, I watched its arms expand as if both trying to escape and offering surrender. “And you don’t have the courtesy to bring seats for anyone other than yourself!” He exhaled, sticking out his tongue allowing it to flap and making a Pbth, pbth, pbth, until he was empty.
“Of course, I am a fraud!” I laughed. “You taught me that. As you’ve said, I write fiction. And as for chairs…?” I opened my hand again and waved one into existence at the side of my desk, “Any of you could create one here.”
The Alchemist firmly planted his cane between us, bent towards me to make his point, using both hands to brace his upper body, and glared.
“Alchemist? How have I offended you today?”
“Offended? Sir, I am grundled!” he harrumphed. “I heard what you told Marian! Of course it’s magick! How could you allow Old Friend to say otherwise?”
His sister was standing in front of Andrea (who was in corporeal form today) making comparisons between Candice, Andrea, and me. She looked up from the manuscript to watch our conversation with an expression of tired sadness only fully comprehensible by another caregiver.
“He’s allowed his opinion the same as everyone else,” I answered. “Strictly speaking, you may be right. However, we are focused on the manuscript today and limiting ourselves to its use within that context. Once we pass the Prologue in Awakening, there is no more magick.”
He banged his cane against the ancient stage allowing his passion to override his manners, “The whole Tree of Life and the Kabbalah are magick! They are the very basis of the Age of Enlightenment and the Western magickal systems. Without it we would never have received our liberties! We’d still be living under monarchy!”
“Yes, I know,” I calmly answered, “but we do not—”
“Not? Not?” he repeated. “There is not one word of it anywhere in the text!”
“I’m truly sorry; we’ve talked about this before. You taught me what I know of the Kabbalah—”
“I was surprised you remembered any of it.”
“Yes,” I admitted and looked at my watch. We could go on like this for hours, but our break was almost over. “The Kabbalah is all what you said and more. My wife unlocked the secrets you attempted to teach me. They’re widely published on the web now.”
A resigned emptiness came over him, “Then we have lost! The materialists will dismiss my work as an artifact of history with no relevance today.”
“That won’t happen. The truths you and Old Friend have taught me run throughout the story. They are not spelled out in many cases. Casual readers will not grasp that there are underlying details to be known.
“Only those who are capable of independent thought will see into the deeper meanings I have written. This was done just as you taught me. I’ve only scratched the surface of what is possible. If I had included more of The Tree it would have confused people and caused them to put the book down.”
I looked through the bubble at the audience and watched a handful nod at their readings.
“There is no magick contained here. The Tree is introduced in the second novel, Unfolding: Nexus. It’s presented as as an allegory allowing the reader to see various metaphysical, psychological, and emotional characteristics of the human soul mapped as landscape at Brightwood Spiritual Retreat. It’s a faster-paced book. I’m sure you’ll find what you are looking for. If my readers are smart enough, they’ll begin to map those descriptions to their personal experience.”
I pointed to Drew standing by the coffee table with Tyler and Marsha, “He got it right when he compared the Kabbalah to a road and nothing more. If Unfolding were about the Kabbalah itself, then it might contain the magick you desire. Should you live long enough,” I offered, “and there is money to be made so I can support myself, perhaps we can collaborate.”
“Bah!” The Alchemist rose, stood to his full height, chin jutted forward, hooked my Herman Miller with the crook of his cane, and trundled back to the cast.
– Jeffrey A. Limpert
Theatre of Dionysus in Athens
By Ian W Scott