The gods

The Greeks were right, X tells me, the gods are flawed. They laze around and bicker. The heavens aren’t serene, far from it, he says, they roar with laughter, earnest speech, drunken shouts, arguments about what to name us and what we’ve named them and how to interpret the events they’ve caused. Confusion reigns up there, he says, it’s a dysfunctional parliament of deities, and that’s the source of all our confusion, all our noise. If we’re weak imitations of the gods, imagine what it must be like up there, he says. If we’re the trailing off of their shouts, the ripples of their noise, at least we can rest sometimes in our limitation and our stupidity, at least we have the makings of silence, he says. And maybe that’s what they dream of, the gods, maybe that’s why they made us in their image, only infinitely weaker: to embody their wish for silence, like dying ripples, like shouts in the wind: to sacrifice us to silence. But they’re too noisy, X says, and they know that whatever they bring into being will be moved by their noise. Yet their hope is that as time moves into eternity, as we move into timelessness, their own noise will die out with us. That’s both their hope and our great mission, he says, that we can become silent even if they themselves can’t, that silence can exist in the world even if it’s only a silence of weakness, a silence that hears what can’t be silenced.


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