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Author Topic: The Quixotic Prophet  (Read 304 times) Average Rating: 0
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« on: July 16, 2014, 03:15:37 AM »

An offering from my second book, soon to be self-published:

THE QUIXOTIC PROPHET

They gather to mock the quixotic prophet: “What a fool he is! Cursing the darkness and tilting at the machine!”

They have lights for the night and the machine gives them food; but here is this madman condemning their welfare. He thinks he is a knight, with his Bible and tongue, out to slay a dragon that is really their friend. Even in their mockery, they pity him: “Next he will tell us that the earth is flat and the sky is falling! How sad to be so ignorant and insolent.”

But he pays no heed. The windmill churns and he steadies his lance for another run.

“Look! Here he goes again! He thinks he can stop our machine! The fool!”

Headlong he rushes forward, and again he is thrown back – violently, callously, with brutal disregard. The people laugh. It is such a curious sight.

“See him! He thinks he can stop science with his sacred book! He thinks he can stop progress with his sacred truth! Well, let him keep trying. It is certainly amusing to watch!”

He brushes himself off, and stands back up. He is bruised, bloodied, and beaten. But he is no less determined. Occasionally someone from the crowd approaches him sincerely:

“You are wasting your time and injuring yourself. I feel sorry for you. I don’t want you to get hurt. Believe what you will, but you cannot destroy the machine. And the more you try, the more you turn everyone against you. Go quietly and live your life as you wish. But this fool’s errand is doing nobody any good. For your own sake, stop this madness.”

But he looks at them and replies:

"Thank you. But perhaps if you will help me fight, we can indeed destroy this dragon. Will you help me please?”

“No! I won’t join in your madness. I have tried to warn you of your error, but if you persist then I cannot help you. Be a fool if you wish, but I will not accompany you.”

Then they return to the crowd and shrug. “I tried to tell the fool, but he would not hear of it. And he even asked me to join in his folly! Imagine that!”

The crowd roars again with laughter. “Look! Here he goes again!”

He launches forth toward the machine, and again it slams him ruthlessly to the ground. Some of the people don’t laugh this time. They love the machine and they hate the fool, but now the machine seems needlessly cruel. But it is still their machine, and they must trust it in order to be fed. Surely what appears to be cruelty must really be love.

“Go home!” they say. “You are getting hurt. You will die if you continue this insanity.”

But slowly, once again, he arises and eyes the beast. And it is indeed a beast. And he is willing to die to reveal this truth – the truth that their beloved machine is actually a beast, a monster, a dragon, perhaps the devil itself.

So again he charges forth.

“Here he goes! Watch! He thinks he can fight our education with his prayers. He thinks he can fight our politics with his prophecy! No wonder he is poor, broken, bloodied, and alone. No, we don’t feel sorry for him! He is bringing this on himself. We laugh at him because he deserves it. If he would only quit this madness and join us in our collective security, then he wouldn’t suffer so. We have tried to tell him. But he won’t listen. He is a self-righteous fool who loves to play the martyr, and so he deserves what he gets.”

And so he arose again and again, time after time, hurling himself into the jaws of the machine. Into the claws of the beast. Into the mouth of the dragon. Until he could no longer stand. Until he could no longer think. Until he could no longer breathe. Until his very life was spent.

And the masses were bored by his death. It was not amusing. It was simply pitiful. There was no joy or mockery to be had in it. After all, nobody wished him to die. The fool had entertained them with his zeal and foolish resolve, but his death was uneventful. And only a few had actually rejoiced in it.

But soon another madman arose from their midst. And although he was quite different, he was just as amusing with his conviction and faith. He launched himself against the machine just as the previous fool had. And the masses gathered, just as before, to mock his efforts. And eventually he met the same fate. The beast slayed him. And the masses took no pleasure in it, nor did they have any pity for him. A foolish life deserves a fool’s death they said.

And this is what continues to happen throughout the course of human history. The people love the machine (the beast), and the masses mock the few fools who presumptuously dare to fight it. They find great pleasure in joining together to ridicule the outcasts and the insane. The masses live by certain maxims that bind them together in universal solidarity:

"A little religion is OK, but too much religion makes one a fanatic.”

“It’s fine to believe in God, but science and the state are the only real solutions to the real problems of humanity.”

“Morality is fine for individuals, but education is the only hope for all mankind.”

 “Peace and nonviolence are great ideals, but sometimes violence is the only practical solution.”


And thus they believe and thus they live - comforted by their collective “wisdom” and their mutual condemnation of anyone who dares to challenge it. Until one day the fire comes. And the fire comes just as surely and just as thoroughly as the flood came all those millenniums ago. And the fire devours the beast and torments the masses who worshiped it.

And the quixotic prophets ride on the wings of angels and weep for those that mocked them.

 
By
Gebre Menfes Kidus



« Last Edit: July 16, 2014, 03:16:00 AM by Gebre Menfes Kidus » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2014, 07:22:16 AM »

Wow. I didn't know reviews was where you advertised one's own works.

Thought it was for discussing other's work.
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2014, 07:47:55 AM »

Wow. I didn't know reviews was where you advertised one's own works.

Thought it was for discussing other's work.


I never know where to post things. I usually post things in "politics" just to be safe. Where do you suggest this be moved to? I didn't mean to be self-promoting.  Embarrassed


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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2014, 07:53:47 AM »

Your blog?

Honestly. I don't know what's a rule breaking thing but for me as a single solitary person with too many opinions:

Unless you want proofreaders or 'please tear this work apart critique'
Posting your own work cannot 'not be self promotional'

'Look, I wrote a book! Here is some of it to read'



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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2014, 07:54:21 AM »

Could you provide a background to this writing or the reason for writing it?  The imagery of Don Quixote is interesting.
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2014, 08:21:04 AM »

Could you provide a background to this writing or the reason for writing it?  The imagery of Don Quixote is interesting.

It's just something I wrote last night. I have always thought of Don Quixote as a type of a prophet or a fool for Christ. I just thought I'd share this story. And I welcome any thoughts, critiques, or insights. Forgive me if it came across as self-promoting. (As a self-published author, I do need all the help I can get promoting my books. And I guess anytime I mention my books, I will come across as self-promoting, which is technically correct. My wife is always encouraging me to promote my books more, but I'm hesitant to do so because I don't want to appear self-serving. I never know what the right balance is. Oh well. Tongue)


Selam
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« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2014, 08:28:03 AM »

Could you provide a background to this writing or the reason for writing it?  The imagery of Don Quixote is interesting.

It's just something I wrote last night. I have always thought of Don Quixote as a type of a prophet or a fool for Christ. I just thought I'd share this story. And I welcome any thoughts, critiques, or insights. Forgive me if it came across as self-promoting. (As a self-published author, I do need all the help I can get promoting my books. And I guess anytime I mention my books, I will come across as self-promoting, which is technically correct. My wife is always encouraging me to promote my books more, but I'm hesitant to do so because I don't want to appear self-serving. I never know what the right balance is. Oh well. Tongue)


Selam

DeniseDenise was right. Including the bracketed section into the above post negates your claim that self-promotion is not your aim.  Tongue
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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2014, 09:45:23 AM »

So, what do you recommend for Gebre to do?  Starting a blog or putting this info on a personal blog was recommended, assuming he doesn't already have one.  How about just posting in the News section "I have a new book, you can check it out here" along with a link?  Would that be considered more appropriate?  I do understand the "using this forum as a personal blog" criticism.

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« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2014, 09:48:37 AM »

So, what do you recommend for Gebre to do?  Starting a blog or putting this info on a personal blog was recommended, assuming he doesn't already have one.  How about just posting in the News section "I have a new book, you can check it out here" along with a link?  Would that be considered more appropriate?  I do understand the "using this forum as a personal blog" criticism.



Again. My civilian two cents.

'Here is a new writing of mine, I could use some opinions'

And the. In a signature: 'for all of my writings and thoughts <link>

Totally works.

But when you tell me in the post that this is for sale, I assume you don't want that criticism and it's just a 'promotion'

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« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2014, 09:49:22 AM »

So, what do you recommend for Gebre to do?  Starting a blog or putting this info on a personal blog was recommended, assuming he doesn't already have one.  How about just posting in the News section "I have a new book, you can check it out here" along with a link?  Would that be considered more appropriate?  I do understand the "using this forum as a personal blog" criticism.



My understanding is that posting links to one's personal blog, especially one where commercial gain could be involved, needs to be approved by a moderator first.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2014, 09:50:19 AM by LBK » Logged
Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2014, 09:26:00 PM »

So, what do you recommend for Gebre to do?  Starting a blog or putting this info on a personal blog was recommended, assuming he doesn't already have one.  How about just posting in the News section "I have a new book, you can check it out here" along with a link?  Would that be considered more appropriate?  I do understand the "using this forum as a personal blog" criticism.



Again. My civilian two cents.

'Here is a new writing of mine, I could use some opinions'

And the. In a signature: 'for all of my writings and thoughts <link>

Totally works.

But when you tell me in the post that this is for sale, I assume you don't want that criticism and it's just a 'promotion'




I never said that my book was for sale. I didn't even mention the title of my book. I simply said that this is an offering from my book.


Selam
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« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2014, 09:27:11 PM »

so you self publish NOT to sell it? 


 laugh laugh laugh laugh laugh
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Gebre Menfes Kidus
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« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2014, 11:06:20 PM »

so you self publish NOT to sell it? 


 laugh laugh laugh laugh laugh


That was not the purpose of this thread. And I always make my books freely available to anyone who cannot afford it.


Selam
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« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2014, 06:43:29 AM »


"A little religion is OK, but too much religion makes one a fanatic.”

“It’s fine to believe in God, but science and the state are the only real solutions to the real problems of humanity.”

“Morality is fine for individuals, but education is the only hope for all mankind.”

 “Peace and nonviolence are great ideals, but sometimes violence is the only practical solution.”


Is it safe to say that the "Quoxotic Prophet" will reveal the ties that bind the masses in four parts?  Or is he simply the vehicle to introduce these beliefs?
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