Monthly Archives: July 2012

Mythology Part 7: Angels And Demons

After year of Sonafeit’s tyranny, the world was able to establish a precarious peace. Many who had turned away came back to Ce and worshiped her and her demigods. The six demigods, Hope, Dorafeit, Cepura, Brennapace, Eagle and Blaze scattered over the earth to rule their designated realm. Trade, industry, education and art flourished under their watch and it seemed the earth was returning to normalcy and prosperity. Many died in the hope of eternity in the Haven that the demigods created with their mother. It was a place of joy and peace that was incorruptible by Sonafeit or his demons.

In the Haven the old were made young, the sick made well. All the angels, as Ce decided to call them were given the choice to fight for her and her demigods. Many chose to fight for her but many did not. Still, she maintained that she was morilly obligated to give them this choice on principle. Sonafeit’s followers would be made slave warriors when they died. The alternative was eternal suffering and deprivation. Sonafeit and his demon army fed on the souls of the others who refused to fight. Previously, this had been the only fate that could befall the dead, but Ce and her demigods changed that. Although they knew it would leave them at a disadvantage, they agreed that they would not use the souls of the dead unless they consented to let them.

Years passed without so much as a hint of the war god’s return and in that time, the number of his followers dwindled. They either turned from him or died out and returned to him to become a demon warrior or suffer in the underworld. Many years later, when his named had all but been erased from the earth, he made is final stand.

It was Festival time; a time of celebration over all the earth in honor of the victory of Ce and her demigods many years ago. It was in the capital city, Gidapolis (meaning City of the Gods), that an old but strong-looking man arrived and found the old temple that had been constructed in honor of Sonafeit. It had once been filled with his worshipers, but for many years it had been nearly vacant on Worship Day, which was held once a week in the evenings.

The old man entered the temple and sat on a bench near the rear of the building and waited. It was early evening. Worship would begin at sundown. Eventually a handful of people entered the temple. They shot the old man quizzical glances as they did not recognize him from the usual congregation, but they otherwise ignored him. When it was time to begin, the temple was filled with about twenty people. The old man was saddened by this. He remembered when the temple was once filled with hundreds of people.

The priest entered through the back of the temple and as he began to make his way to the altar, the old man caught his wrist. The priest gave a start but then smiled down at the man.

“What may I do for you, sir?” he asked politely.

“I am your war god,” said the old man. “I am Sonafeit. I have come back to take my place as rightful ruler of the earth.” As he said this, it seemed that he grew younger and stronger. The lines were erased from his face, his eyes grew dark and fierce and his frail limbs grew muscle. He stood and said in a loud, clear voice. “Subjects!” The few people in the temple turned to see who was speaking. “Subjects, I am your war god! You will be rewarded for staying true to me! You will be given high rank in my army! You will be protected! You will answer only to me! And now I shall reveal my army to you!”

As he said this, large, muscular demons materialized among the benches in the temple. Their skin was cracked and seemingly burned. Their faces were contorted into grimaces. Many had missing limbs that had been replaced with maces or clubs. They were nearly eight feet tall. They had large, leathery wings that were a dark shade of red, and barbed tails. For weapons they bore flails and barbed whips that were blindingly white and burning with some kind of dark power more deadly than fire.

Before they could argue, before they could run, before they could scream, they twenty people in the temple were taken by one of these demons and transformed into demons themselves. The army was then given orders to divide and conquer the city.

Ce and her army were ready. The goddess had known that the war god had come the moment he reentered the world of the living– her realm. She would banish him to the underworld once and for all, even if it killed her. She would entrust the earth and the Haven to her children, the six demigods that brought the world hope. Over the years, she had amassed an army of her own; angels, she called them. They were the souls of the dead in their ultimate perfection; strong, powerful and good. They were smaller and quicker than Sonafeit’s army, but they were not as physically strong, and were far easier to cut down. Still, they possessed more ability than brute force alone. Ce had given many of them the same abilities she had given to her demigods. The angels looked like they did when they were human, but they had large, colorful butterfly wings. for weapons, they carried beautifully crafted swords and bows and arrows.

Gidapolis was soon coated red with the blood of humans, demigods, angels, demons and the gods themselves. The sisters Hope and Dorafeit were cut down soon after the fighting began. Eagle’s golden falcon, Javelin was killed when she swooped down to distract a demon from a pair of humans who had joined the fight along with many others. He was then forced to fight on the ground as no other bird would make an adequate steed. He was eventually forced to retreat due to his grief at the loss of his loved Javelin.

The battle did not take long. Sonafeit was enraged when he learned that Ce’s army was forcing the demons to retreat to the outskirts of the city. It would have been wiser to retreat, but Sonafeit forced them to fight until there were no demons left to fight. It was then that he was forced to choose; fight or flee. Of course, being the god of war, he chose to fight.

“Sonafeit, don’t you see?” said Ce as she and her demigods began to drive him towards his temple. “You cannot win. Hate and greed will never prevail over love and charity. People are drawn to power. You were powerful. That is why people turned. They saw a warrior god and looked to you for strength. All you gave them was pain. You were a liar, deceitful, evil, and I will not stand for it! I henceforth banish you to the underworld where you will suffer and those who worshiped you will be your captors! They will be the ones to punish you! They may do what they wish with you! I will never hear of you again! Nor will I think of you! You will be banished from the minds of humans, demigods and angels alike! Goodbye Sonafeit!”

And with that she summoned the power of every angel, demigod and mortal in her army and hit him with the force of all the pain and misery he had caused. Where he had previously been, there stood an elegant carving of a golden falcon in flight. It would be a reminder to humanity of what had transpired, even if they did not understand the symbol, they would know that evil was vanquished on this day.

So concludes the first stage of my mythology. The story is not over, however. There will be more adventures to come!

Mythology Part 6: Battle Of The Earth

They found themselves on the outskirts of a city that was plagued with poverty and sickness; results of the neglect their god and emperor had shown them. The seven explored the earth in secret for many months and secovered that the situation was the same everywhere. The god Sonafeit had turned the earth to ruin; prosperity to defeat; love to hate. The goddess wept at what she found.

The six demigods were equally as appalled. It was their turn to challenge a god.

“Sonafeit!” shouted Brennapace. “We challenge you! Too long you have manipulated and destroyed the people that we and our mother love!” There was no answer, so he continued. “Sonafeit! Do not insult us! We will defeat you, you pathetic child! Come and we shall fight! I see you are a coward! Come and face us!”

Then from the heavens came sneering reply. “Huh! Is this all you can conjure, Ce? Six demigods and a flock of birds? You are still no threat to me. Still, you accepted my challenge those many years ago. I suppose it is only fair that I accept yours, little goddess.”

He appeared out of the sky riding what appeared to be a flaming, winged stallion. Ce conjured one of her own, and the seven companions and their falcons attacked. It was impossible for Cepura  to attack at first because she did not have a range weapon and her steed could not fly. When Sonafeit and the others were close enough, however, she and Brennapace (who had been fighting with lightning) threw their weapons. Brennapace’s sword cut through some dark force in one of the flaming stallion’s wings, but Cepura’s axe bounced off of it as if it were made of rubber and not metal. Brennapace retrieved their weapons using the light energy that Ce had put into them for protection, and he threw his sword again.

The seven companions eventually got Sonafeit and his stallion on the ground, but he was still a formidable opponent. He had unnatural defenses about him that they needed to cut through before they would even have a chance at damaging his armor. It was amazing to them how powerful he was against seven opponents and their mighty steeds.

Eventually Brennapace, Blaze and Ce were able to cut down Sonafeit’s stallion. It turned to ashes and blew away in a gust of wind. This was the moment of truth. The seven companions attacked the god of war with everything in their power. His dark defenses were diminished and he was hurt badly. They were about to finish him off, when he screamed. It was the most terrifying scream that any of them had ever heard, including the goddess, Ce. It was filled with so much rage, fear and pain that it landed the flying creatures and forced the demigods to cover their ears.

The fighting stopped then as Sonafeit disappeared into thin air.

“The fight is not over,” said Ce, sadly. “He will hide away in his forsaken underworld and regain his strength. In the meantime, my children, we must prepare ourselves to face him again. I fear he will not be alone the next time we meet. He may create demigods or more likely, demons of his own to counter us. We will be outnumbered. Evil hardly fights fair.”

‘Could you not increase our numbers?” countered Hope.

“There is not enough time,” explained the goddess. “You children grew to age naturally. Sonafeit will twist the minds of his children and make them grow unnaturally fast. They will be deranged and angry. They will even hate him, but they will have no choice but to serve him.” After a pause she said, “And we will have no choice but to destroy them. There will be no helping them.”

“In the meantime we should do what we can to help the people our enemy has so wronged and corrupted,” said Brennapace. “Mother, would it be so wrong to bring the people to our refuge in the sky?”

“My son,” said Ce. It is the one place I cannot bring them. There is nowhere safe upon this earth. I fear for the future of humanity.”

“But Mother,” said Blaze, “I’ve had a marvelous idea! We could create a Haven for them! It would be safe there! It would be incorruptible! Could you do it, Mother?”

“I could do it! Here is what I will do; The humans will be given a test. If they continue to worship and believe in me, they will be granted safety in my Haven after they die. It will be a paradise. Sonafeit has corrupted the underworld so that it has become a place of fear and pain. People fear death, but if they turn from Sonafeit, they will have no need to fear! I will also give you children permanent charge of the earth. I will divide it into six regions and you will all rule over one. You will be stronger than fortune’s hand! People will approve of you and those who die and come to the Haven will become our warriors! Do what you can to turn humanity away from Sonafeit. A new war is coming, and when it comes, we will give the wretched god a fight to remember!”

Food

I thought I’d share some of my eating habits/tips because I’ve lost quite a bit of weight in the last year or so. I think they work, because I really don’t exercise that much. I swim a couple times a week, but I really don’t try very hard.

I find large quantities of blue berries or strawberries make an excellent snack. Wheat Thins dipped in hummus are also a delightful and healthy snack. Pitta bread with hummus can also make a quick meal.

Here’s a tip. EAT JUNK FOOD! treat yourself. Don’t feel guilty about it. You’ll satisfy your craving and then you’ll move on. Here’s the thing; when you eat junk food, like cake or french fries or whatever, just don’t overdo it. I think a lot of people can make the mistake of eating too much of something because it tastes so darn good. Eat until you’re satisfied, not until you’re full even.

Salads are pointless! They’re not satisfying in any way! They’re boring to eat and usually not filling. A bowl of rice and veggies is just about as bland, but you can spice it up with cheese or olive oil or even just pepper. For starters it’s actually filling, and it doesn’t feel like you’re just eating boring old leaves. If you do decide to eat salad, forgo the dressing. It’s bad for you anyway, so it makes the salad kind of pointless.

Certain things are just not worth eating. These things include anything like potato chips and most sugary candies; basically anything most people would consider “snacky” is not worth it. Most cereals are not worth eating. They’re usually either unsatisfying or disgustingly sugary. In fact, I find Eggs to be the only actually satisfying breakfast food. You can be quite creative with them, so if you insist on eating something breakfasty, eat eggs. Here’s another general tip; don’t designate certain foods for certain meals. That gives you a lot more variety to choose from for each meal. Cold pizza really is a perfectly acceptable breakfast. Just try to include some fruit or vegetables in any meal. It doesn’t even have to make sense. It’s just good for you, so eat it!

Something that I’m sure is not unique to myself, is that I find eating to be a painfully boring task. This is partly why I just don’t eat much. I don’t feel like taking the time to eat a large amount of food. Portion size is definitely important. You should treat eating like anything else. Do it until you’re tired of it. If you’re bored before you’re full, stop eating. Your stomach will tell you when you need to start again. This may seem a little counter intuitive, but it’s okay to be hungry. It’s also okay to eat more or less than three meals a day. I usually end up eating two or one and a snack during the summer. During school time though, I usually will eat three and occasionally three and a snack. This is partly due to my sleeping habits during different times of the year. I get a lot more sleep when I’m not in school.

I’m sure this probably overlaps what actually smart people already know, but I hope it was helpful.

More mythology is on the way!

Song Lyrics

Very creative title, I know…

Anyway, I finished writing a couple songs yesterday, and I thought I’d share the lyrics. The first song is called “Stuck In My Head.” Basically I’m using a song as a metaphor for faith in this one. I thought it was cleaver. I hope you guys think so too!

I hear the music through the windows
And I am curious so I take my chances
Look inside it’s beautiful
And I want more so I sing the harmony

And ever since
that song’s been stuck in my head
And I’ll sing
‘Cause I never want silence again

Late at night when I’m not sleeping
In the dark I sing that old song
Sounding through the darkest hours
It reminds me that the sun will rise

And ever since
That song’s been stuck in my head
And I’ll sing
‘Cause I never want silence again

Belt it out in my own version
Same old tune you’ve never heard it
Borrowed start to a perfect ending
Borrowed time I take to keep it

And ever since
That song’s been stuck in my head
And I’ll sing
‘Cause I never want silence again

The second song is called “Just Be Nice.” It goes along with the post I wrote a while ago called “Role Models.” If you’re interested, the post explains the point of the song in more detail.

They say you’ve got a one track mind
You’ve given your life up to God
You help the homeless find a place to stay
And you pray like the world is going to end
You haven’t spoken to your brother in years
Since the day you found out he was gay
You left the girl that you loved one night
‘Cause she didn’t know the right god

But why can’t you just be nice?
An open heart needs an open mind
But you just can’t get past your pride
And you’re never going to change a thing

I see you standing there with your picket sign
Yelling at all the passers by
You say you know the truth and the way to life
But all you ever do is look for fault
You say you believe in a merciful God
So what gave you the right to judge?
You say you’re just trying to be like the Lord
But you won’t give anyone a chance

Why can’t you just be nice?
An open heart needs an open mind
But you just can’t get past your pride
And you’re never going to change a thing

You’ll never read between the lines
You can’t see past that great divide
And faith should never make you hate
But you just won’t let go

Why can’t you just be nice?
An open heart needs an open mind
But you just can’t get past your pride
And you’re never going to change a thing

Why can’t you just be nice?

That’s all folks!

Mythology Part 5: Downfall

The bloodlust had never really left him. Sonafeit had effectively defied the goddess, Ce and completely avoided punishment. He now had abandoned the dead and had control of many of the living. He had recruited an army of followers and soldiers who he had convinced to turn from the goddess, and turn on Fortune’s Hand, a group of five rulers who had been in power for many years. Fortune’s hand had been strong and had been able to maintain peace until this sorrowful day. There had never been war in the land, but sonafeit was angry and defiant. His army was now far larger than that of fortune’s hand and was backed by his divine power. And so began the first war in the history of the world. Ce did not leave her remaining followers to the mercy of the evil ones. She too began to fight and took command alongside Fortune’s Hand; directing and protecting them.

The previous members of Fortune’s Hand had long since given command to their children, Queen Seinga, who was King Siri’s daughter, Queen Bella, who was Queen Lilly’s Daughter, Queen Whero, the new queen of the Hidden Woods, King Eli of the North and King Cole, who was the nephew of King Ergeitus. These kings and queens were young and strong and devoted as their parents had been. Their forces were still horribly outnumbered and they relied heavily on the goddess for assistance and guidance. She cam and fought alongside them in her human form and defended them well. Still many warriors from both armies fell.

Ce realized that the only way to defeat Sonafeit was to outnumber him. She realized that pitting mortals against each other was pointless when they were all under the protection of their particular god. She would have to face Sonafeit directly if she was going to end this conflict. She had defeated him in his human form once before, but now that he was a god, the only way she could defeat him would be to outnumber him. This left her with but one option. She would have to surrender; let him win and eventually rebel against the god of war.

When she revealed this truth to Fortune’s Hand, they were dismayed that their goddess would so readily accept defeat. They did not understand how she even hoped to defeat him once he had won this war until she explained that she was going to give each of them a divine gift. She instructed them to sleep with their mates that night, and in the morning the queens of Fortune’s Hand and the wives of the kings would be carrying children. To each of these children, Ce would grant divine powers. They would be neither fully divine nor fully human, but they would be her children and would fight alongside her to defeat Sonafeit. They reluctantly agreed, and accepted defeat. They then went into hiding with the goddess in her castle in the stars and waited.

It was many years until the children of fortune’s hand were old enough and powerful enough to oppose Sonafeit, and in this time, the world fell into darkness. The people of the earth were forced into slavery to build a magnificent empire for their divine ruler. They harbored hatred, fear and anger in their souls and civil war broke out frequently. The god did nothing to stop the fighting. It kept his subjects in check and ensured that no one peoples would be stronger than another. Ce’s defeat also brought sickness to the land, which she had always prevented out of love for her people. The god, however saw this also as a way to keep the people at bay. Those who did not die believed that he had saved them, and although they feared and even hated him at times, they thanked for his mercy, which was actually a combination of coincidence and indifference. Even the dead suffered. In the realm of the afterlife, which he controlled, he leached power from the souls of his captives. It seemed that the earth had become a living hell.

Finally, the children of Fortune’s Hand were ready to fight back. In total there were six children; three girls and three boys. Two of the girls were the twin daughters of Queen Bella. Their names were Hope and Dorafeit, which means “Daughter of the Fight.” The other girl was the daughter of Queen Seinga. Her name was Cepura, which means “The Power of Ce.” The son of Queen Whero was named Eagle. The son of King Eli was named Brennapace, “Which means “Bringer of Peace.” The son of King Cole was named Blaze.

Each child was given a specific power and a steed to ride into battle. Hope and Dorafeit were given the powers of invisibility and speed. They were also connected to each other by a mental bond, which made them very cleaver and powerful as a team. Their weapons of choice were bows and arrows. They rode creatures which resembled giant dragonflies with stingers that brought instant death to their victims. Hope’s was blue and Dorafeit’s was green. They possessed the same abilities as their riders. Cepura was given the ability of inhuman strength. Her skin was tough, like an extra layer of armor and she wielded an enormous battle axe that no human would normally be able to handle. She rode an enormous black bear with huge, deadly teeth and claws. Eagle was given the ability to communicate with and command the many falcons that Ce had created to fight along with her demigods. His weapon of choice was also a bow and arrows. His steed was a great, golden falcon that could fly higher and faster than any normal bird and could breathe fire. Brennapace was given the ability to command light energy. With this power, he could command lightning, blind his enemies with brilliant light and heal his companions if need be. He wielded an elegant, slender, white-bladed sword. His stead was a pure white stag whose antlers resembled forks of lightning sprouting from its head. The stag could also control light energy as well as cause serious damage with its antlers. Blaze was given control of the element of fire. His steed was a powerful red dragon who could also command fire.

The steeds were just as intelligent and capable as their riders. The dragonflies were named Wisp and Dart (the blue, female, the green male). The bear (male) was named Shadow. The falcon (female) was named Javelin. The stag (male) was named Chaser. The dragon (female) was named Jewel.

The preparations had been made. The children and their steeds were ready to go into battle. The six of them and their master, the goddess herself, would be known forever simply as The Saviors. They left their parents in the safety of Ce’s palace to protect them, and left for earth. When the seven companions arrived. They found themselves in the midst of pain and horror they had only witnessed from a distance until that point.

Mythology Part 4: A Divine Mistake

“Good. There is one final matter to attend to, Rebellious. Before I send you back to the realm of the mortal, you must have a new name; a name that is fitting of a god such as yourself.” After some contemplation the goddess proclaimed, “You shall now be known as Sonafeit, the messenger god. You shall be my prophet to the people. In my language, the language of the divine, it means ‘Son of the Fight.’ A fitting name, I believe. Do you agree, Sonafeit?

 “Yes, my lady. I shall cary it well,” he replied in a somewhat defeated tone.

 “Very well. Then away you must go.”

 Sonafeit was expecting to once again endure the suffocating blackness before returning the battlefield that he had left only a couple of hours prior, but instead he found himself instantly transported to where he had previously been standing. His men started and were silent until he spoke.

 “The goddess, Ce has given me what I desired! I am no longer Rebellious, the man who was so like a god and not. I am now Sonafeit, the messenger god! I am obliged by the goddess to keep the peace. Men, you must all go back to your homes, but first we must give back what we have taken. The goddess has granted me only minor abilities compared to what she can do, but I must use what I have to pay back my debt. If you so choose, you may leave and go back to your homes, but if you follow me and help me, I and the goddess will repay you.

 Many of the men left then and there. They had shared the bloodlust that had caused Sonafeit to begin his campaign against Fortune’s Hand in the first place. Many followed him, however and as they backtracked through the defeated cities, it became evident that his new abilities made him very powerful and helpful. Some of his men had been left behind in the cities for various reasons. Some had been wounded too severely to continue, and some had been stationed there to maintain control. Sonafeit was able to discern whether they would continue to follow him, leave or fight back before he and his traveling men even reached the cities. He and a small group of his most trusted warriors would enter the city by night and kill those who continued to threaten the peace or convince the remaining soldiers to follow them. As punishment for his rebellion against the peace, the goddess, Ce had prevented Sonafeit from harming another person in his new form as a god, but he was still able to command and defend his men with his heightened abilities which gave them a profound advantage. Over time, they were so successful, that Sonafeit’s warriors became his followers and began to worship his divine nature.

 This was exactly what Sonafeit had hoped for. The goddess had given him the abilities she had because they had seemed benign. She understood his nature and knew he would not turn wholeheartedly to a peaceful way of life. She did not foresee however, that in making him a god, she had passed on some of her own divine qualities that she valued no more than a human values their ability to breathe.

 In giving him the ability to open his mind to herself and others, she had unintentionally given him the ability to close his mind so that she could not read his thoughts. He realized this as he was taking back cities that he himself had captured, and he constantly worked on a mental defense so that she could not break through his barriers. By the same principle, he realized that he could also cut off her control over his body and abilities.

 She had also inadvertently given him the subtle power of influence. This he realized, caused people to share his sentiments, to an extent, and made it far more likely that people would turn and follow him. He realized this as well, and worked to strengthen this power. He did this while trying to cut himself off from the goddess, which made it more difficult for her to realize what he was doing. He eventually gained the ability to take over the minds of animals, and of course he realized with more work, he could do the same with humans.

 The goddess had unfortunately made one final mistake. She had looked over a quality that belongs to the mortal and the divine. She had allowed him to maintain the ability to adapt. This he realized meant that without her influence, he would be able to learn and cultivate new abilities.

 Over the course of two years, Sonafeit recaptured the cities he had once seen fit to destroy, and helped return peace to the land which was still under the control of Fortune’s Hand. He then personally pledged to them that he would always seek to maintain the peace, as the goddess did. At first they did not entirely believe him, but then who would be daft enough to defy a god?

 Over the next several years, the people of the land enjoyed prosperity and peace. Sonafeit was finally able to completely cut himself off from the goddess and had begun to develop new powers of his own accord. The first ability he chose to work on, was the ability to manipulate fire. This was fairly easy for him to perfect, as he was already impervious to fire, and so he understood its qualities. Next, he decided to work on the ability to manipulate water and air, as he already had an understanding of aspects of these elements from the abilities the goddess had given him. He eventually realized that he could even manipulate darkness and by association, light energy. He was soon a force to be reckoned with.

 As he perfected these abilities, he used them to help as many people as he could with anything that was particularly troubling for them in their everyday lives. He directly stopped crime but always refrained from killing and did whatever he could to make people believe that he was powerful, forgiving and genuinely cared about the people he was helping. He even read their minds and discussed personal matters with them, which made some wary, but made others even more trusting of him.

 He did all of this for two reasons. The first was to win over people who would worship and obey him without question. The second reason was to convince the goddess that his intentions were entirely good and that she should not punish him for cutting her off so he could develop more directly helpful powers, although eventually he realized that she could do nothing to him at this point anyway. The final power he developed was the ability to protect his followers from the wrath of the goddess. She had promised that they would not be punished for turning from her, but he had more dangerous intentions than simply winning over worshipers for himself.

Knowing What You Want

Knowing what you want out of life can be an exceedingly difficult thing. It is one thing to know what you want at any given moment, but another thing entirely to know what you want in the long run. I tend to think there are certain things that generally everyone wants out of life such as a good job, a steady income, love (with a partner), a place to call home, stability and independence. These things are bordering on necessities rather than desires; needs more than wants, however.

I think on an individual level, people want more specific, and perhaps deeper things out of life. In one of my classes this year, I had to write a paper that determined what it is that makes life worth living by using the ideas of two philosophers that we had studied. I used Aristotle and St. Augustine’s ideas and determined that it is happiness in or by goodness that makes life worth living. It is being able to rejoice in goodness.

This however, does not explain what people want. Sure, it can keep you going, but I believe that this is actually the bare minimum in terms of what people need to be truly happy. People who believe in God and believe that He is good and rejoice in His goodness can still be otherwise miserable without the other things that I specified above.

The fact of the matter is, every individual wants the basics and something more. Everyone has a yearning for something. Some people want to find their perfect place; a place that is so close to heaven they can taste it. Others want to master something. Still others want to somehow, somewhere, sometime save a life. These are long-term-once-in-a-lifetime goals. Some people meet them sooner than others. I think once people meet their long-term-once-in-a-lifetime goal, they find a sense of peace. I have seen this in people. I think this is why some people seem to be fighting and striving, even when we don’t understand why.

More than anything, I want to save a life. I spend more time fantasizing about this than you’d even believe. The fantasy is always different. Sometimes I save a person from a tragic accident, sometimes from a sickness, and sometimes from deep sadness. For some reason, I strongly believe that there is someone out there who I am eventually going to save. I’ve actually held this belief since I was a child. I don’t remember how old I was when I started fantasizing about this, but I may have been as young as five or six.

When I got older and picked up the guitar, I began to have more musical ambitions. I had dreamed about being a rock star ever since I was eight years old. When I was fifteen I learned to play the guitar and when I was 16 or 17 I started writing songs and performing at open mics. Even though I had far more ambitious goals in my mind, I am perfectly happy with where I am now in terms of music. I have gone as far as I need to, and although I will continue to learn more and become better, I am entirely satisfied with where I am now. Music is my peace. When I play guitar, I am entirely calm; not always happy, but at peace with the world. In the past couple of years, I’ve been picking up other instruments and slowly teaching myself. It is a slow process, but I enjoy it more than anything else. It gives me a sense of accomplishment when I master something new on the drum or learn a new technique on the guitar, or figure out a new chord on the mandolin or adapt a song from one instrument to another. I have reached my musical Nirvana.

 

Mythology Part 3: Battle Of The Stars

“No matter,” sneered Rebellious. “I can defeat you here, and I can defeat you among the stars!”

A gust of wind swept the land as if the goddess had sighed, then she said, “Very well, child. We shall fight. It is sad that you do not value your life.”

For a moment everything went black. Rebellious could not breathe, and he heard a ringing in his ears. Then he found himself in a large hall of white stone and gold. At the end of the hall stood a young woman wearing golden armor and a cape as white as snow. Her hair was golden, and her eyes were blue. Her lips were crimson and her cheeks a delicate shade of pink. Her face was perfect except for the expression of deep sorrow and weariness with which she looked upon her foe. She carried no shield, but her blade was long and slender and looked very strong. It was as white as the stones of the hall and the cape she wore.

“You never seemed to care much for beauty,” said the goddess. “But I had hoped to show you something before we are locked in mortal combat.” She strode to a window without taking her eyes off of him and beckoned for him to follow. He reluctantly followed, and slowly took his eyes from the goddess’s face. He suppressed his amazement as he looked out the window and saw what looked like a blue and green marble glowing far off in the darkness. “That is what we will be fighting for, Rebellious. That is our green earth that you live upon and I sustain. It saddens me that you would seek to disrupt the rightful balance of things with this pointless fighting. I do not wish to kill you, Rebellious, but it seems to me that that is quickly becoming my only option. I had brought you here in the hope that I might reason with you. Is that possible, my son?”

“I will not listen to your banter any longer, goddess,” said Rebellious as he drew his sword. “I will show the world that it is I they should fear and I they should respect.”

As he attacked, she effortlessly blocked him despite his immense strength and said, “You cannot rule through fear alone. You must reward your subjects. You must help them through times of need. You must care for them and keep their best interests in mind when making decisions. You must strive to prevent violence, not promote it. Violence only leads to sadness and suffering, neither of which are ever good. You must try to forgive and love your enemies. If you can forgive them, they are not truly enemies. Fortune’s Hand knew this.”

“My father left Fortune’s Hand because they were blind!” shouted Rebellious as he fended off a seemingly impossible series of blows. “If they had just taken the rest of the continent, the kingdom would have been that much safer, but all they wanted to do was sit on their thrones as possible enemies could have been plotting against them.”

“It is true,” said the goddess as she began to push him back towards the far end of the hall. “Fortune’s Hand did have enemies. What you fail to see, Rebellious, is that their enemies would never be strong enough to overwhelm them and their allies. For one thing, I would never have allowed it. Fortune’s Hand were such great keepers of the peace that all they would need to do is ask and I would aid them. their allies trusted them and would surely come to their aid as well. They were good and powerful in all the right ways. Your father was blind. All he wanted was power, and now I see, so do you.”

They were at a standstill toward the back end of the hall. For once in his life, Rebellious was more than evenly matched. He was breathing heavily and his armor was beginning to weigh him down. The goddess on the other had did not seem to even break a sweat. Finally, they were able to cut into each other, and the blood flowed from both of them where they were wounded. Rebellious managed to slip his blade between two plates of armor near her shoulder where it cut into her flesh and lodged itself for the few seconds that he could not afford. He had not wounded her sword arm, and she swung her weapon toward his head and narrowly missed as he pulled his sword free of her arm and jumped out of the way. She managed to bring her blade down on his back where it broke his armor and cut through his flesh, nearly breaking ribs, and it would have pinned him if he had rolled a fraction of a second later. Then he kicked her in the knees and she flung herself on top of him.

She grabbed his helmet and yanked his head up then banged it against the stone floor as hard as she could. He tried to free himself, but the pain in his head was too great and the goddess was too strong. Then she drove his head against the floor again and everything went black. He was barely conscious, but a thought finally came to his head. He lay there for a moment as she sat on his chest as if he had given in or lost consciousness. Then when his sight finally returned, he turned his head as hard and fast as he could and bit her wrist. She yelped and impulsively pulled her other hand away from his head then attempted to push him away. In that moment she had ceased pressing on his chest quite as hard and he managed to throw her off with his knees. They both got up almost instantly and he staggered as stars came to his eyes.

He was just about to parry a blow from her sword and ready himself for a counter attack, but suddenly she stepped back and said, “Enough!”

He was taken aback by the sudden harshness in her voice, but then he said, “Ha! You submit, goddess?”

“I do not!” She replied. “I won this duel. What you did was nothing more than foul trickery! You ignored the rules of engagement, child. I had you pinned. The match was over. I merely thought you were unconscious. I had thought to kill you, but it is not in my nature to so pointlessly and carelessly destroy one of my children. It would be better justice to kill you, but I think it would be favorable for myself and for my people to just grant you what you want. What is it that you want, my child?” The question was subdued and sweet as he had heard her speak before.

“You know what I desire,” he said flatly.

“I do. You desire to be a god. It is a great responsibility. It is far different than being a city lord or the king of a nation. As a god you can destroy or create just as easily as you would walk across this hall.” After a short silence she said, “Very well, I will make you a god, but you must have rules. Do not argue with me, because I could just as easily kill you. I gave you your chance in a fair duel, but I could take your life as easily as I gave it. Your rules are thus: As punishment for the lives you have taken, you will no longer be able to take another life. In addition, I will give you charge of The Land of the Dead, and you must care for all those who have died by your hand or otherwise. Thirdly, for your treachery, you will be forever banished from these halls. This is regrettable, as I would have enjoyed some company, but it is only right. Finally, you may be a god, but you will still answer to me. I am still your queen and now the queen of the gods. People may worship you as long as they do not turn away from me. If they do you will be punished and they will not.”

“Now for the powers I will grant you: you will be able to fly, breathe under water and you will be impervious to fire. I will also give you the ability to see in the dark. I grant you these abilities in the hope that you would use them to help people. Likewise, I will grant you the power of foresight and the ability to read thoughts so that you may see and understand my plan as well as the intentions of humans. In the future I may grant you other powers if I deem them necessary or helpful or perhaps as a reward, and I may strip you of your powers if I see that you are misusing them. And one last thing; you will address me either as ‘your highness’ or ‘my lady.’ It is only right that you would pay me the proper respect. Do I make myself clear?”

“Yes….. my lady.”

Mythology Part 2: Rebellion

For many years humanity prospered. They built cities and towns where they lived and worked and worshiped their goddess. In return, the goddess rewarded her peoples with wealth and peace. As nations grew in size and strength, she personally appointed kings and queens to rule. The most powerful of these were King Heleimus of the North, King Ergeitus Warhand (named so for his strength), Queen Elfeiné of the Hidden Woods, King Siri who ruled over Cocosera (a warm, coastal region) and Queen Lilly the Pure.  These five rulers eventually joined together to form a ruling body known as Fortune’s Hand.

The five rulers were young and strong and governed their people well. They ruled over the largest and most powerful nation amongst the nearby kingdoms, and were often relied upon for wisdom and might to keep the peace, which they did very effectively.

As they got older, the kings and queens took husbands and wives from the nobility and royalty of other nations, which strengthened alliances and increased prosperity in their ever-growing empire. Soon their empire was so large that it encompassed a large portion of the continent known as Erone. Most of Fortune’s Hand remained satisfied with the extent of their nation and power, but eventually, King Ergeitus became arrogant and overly ambitious. He implored the other rulers to go to war against the last few nations that were not part of the empire.

“No, we cannot,” said Queen Lilly as they sat in King Siri’s Palace. “We have forever maintained a peaceful existence between us and the other rulers of the surrounding nations; and we are in fact surrounded on three sides. If we go to war, it will be the end of us. The goddess will not look favorably on petty violence. We would gain nothing. We are allied with the other nations and we can pass freely through their lands. If we attack one, they will all ally themselves against us, and I fear that alliance would be powerful enough to destroy us.”

“That is why we gain control of them now!” said King Ergeitus. “If we take them now, they will have no chance to attack us. We would have control of the entire continent and all the port cities. We would control all the trade and if anyone wanted to attack us, they would have to cross the ocean, which would give us the advantage of time, distance and higher ground. We would be unstoppable! And why stop with the continent? With all the resources we would gain, we could develop faster larger and stronger war ships. We could cross all the seas and take the entire earth!”

“You are out of line, Ergeitus!” said King Siri. “The four of us do not support this plan, nor will we agree to aid you in any kind of war effort. We must maintain the peace or face the wrath of both the people and our goddess. The people of our nation will not agree to this either. They may even rebel. We have never had a war, and we will do everything in our power to avoid one.”

Ergeitus persisted however, so to ensure that he would never pose a threat to the peace, he was stripped of his title and power and banished to the nearby country of Elnearma. There he and his wife lived in comfort and solitude. Fortune’s Hand had made sure that they would have every luxury they wanted, but they were not allowed to leave the citadel where they resided.

Eventually, Ergeitus and his wife, Helena had a son whom they named Rebellious. Like his father, Rebellious was strong and ambitious. In fact, even from a young age, the boy possessed an inhuman strength that awed his parents. The boy was eventually allowed to leave the citadel in order to attend a boarding school in the city of Annatheens. Many of the other boys hated Rebellious for his strength, and this led him to become angry, arrogant and bitter.

In time, he learned about Fortune’s Hand and what they had done to his Parents. He hated them, and he hated the goddess, Ce for their unjust actions and their simple-minded beliefs. In his eighteenth year, Rebellious decided what he wanted. He wanted revenge. He wanted rebellion, and he wanted war; not only against the people who had robbed him and his parents of their honor, but also against the countries that his father was never able to take. Most importantly, he wanted to take the nation ruled by Fortune’s Hand.

Being the persuasive speaker that he was, Rebellious convinced several of his fellow classmates to join him in what he hoped would be the first and greatest rebellion the world had ever known. He and a band of ten other young men easily took the schools armory – in which were kept the weapons for training the students; for although they did not believe in war, their mentors deemed it necessary to know how to defend one’s self – and then taking the school itself was an easy task.

For several days, the rebels used the school as their home-base, and eventually captured the city of Annatheens. On the last day of the battle, Rebellious and a young man named Argus successfully captured the lord of the city and smote him. Rebellious then proclaimed Argus as the new lord of Annatheens and had all those who still opposed him put to death. Their force grew as many people feared for their lives and hoped they would be spared if they fought for the rebels. They then freed Ergeitus and Helena and moved on to capture several nearby cities which took little effort and their force grew after every battle.

In his triumph and arrogance at his victory over the city of Rosenia, Rebellious proclaimed, “None can oppose me, not even the goddess herself! Ce may be the Queen of Peace, but I am the King of War!” Some of his troops were apprehensive after this proclamation. They had praised the goddess for their victories and for sparing their lives. Rebellious continued on his blind tirade however, and said, “Come, oh goddess! I challenge you! If I can take all these lands with such little opposition, than I can take you as well! Cowardly princes! That is what you are! You cower in your starry chambers while your followers fall at my feet! I will command the earth, oh goddess! My strength is all that I will ever need! I do not fear you! Come and face me!”

Then there was silence. A slight breeze was all that seemed to move in the world for a long minute. Then the stars seemed to fade and glow ever-so-slightly darker. There was not a cloud in the sky, but a low rumble of thunder sounded nonetheless. The moon went black and in its place seemed to be a hole in the world. It was so dark that the soldiers could not see a foot in front of them, and some began to panic. Then a voice was heard seemingly from nowhere. It was sweet and light and filled with beauty and also sadness, but no one could see where it was coming from. Rebellious had made a point of not allowing women to fight among his men.

The voice said, “Rebellious, I have heard you. I am the goddess Ce. It saddens me greatly that you have caused such pain and sorrow among the people of this land. My people fear for their lives. They do not respect you but hate you. I had hoped that they would be able to repel you, but it seems that they require my assistance. I can allow you to oppose me no longer. I will accept your challenge on one condition; we fight in my realm.”

Mythology Part 1: Creation Story

Before the beginning of time, before there were stars in the sky and before there was life on earth, the goddess Ce wandered the dark expanse of the universe searching for life. She wandered for thousands of years and found nothing. One day, however, she discovered a dark, desolate planet; an inhospitable desert devoid of life. For a day she searched for any signs of life on the planet, but when she found none, she decided to create her own. She first created the sun to warm and sustain her creation, and then she began her work.

She spent the next day excavating the seas and filling them with water. Then she created the fish and sharks and whales and sea turtles, and all manner of other creatures that would inhabit the waters. For a while, her creation pleased her, but soon she grew bored of the sea creatures and created desert creatures to inhabit the land. Soon she discovered that without sustenance, the desert creatures would die, so she created fresh water lakes and rivers as well as desert plants. She decided that there should be other creatures to inhabit the fresh water as well, so she filled the fresh water with new life.

For several days, she watched over the desert creatures and the water creatures, but they too began to bore her. On the next day, she created the jungles and with them she created tigers, bears, monkeys and other jungle creatures. She was delighted with her new creatures until she decided that there should be creatures to inhabit the skies as well. Then she created birds to live in both the desert and the jungle.

She went on for several more days in this manner, until she had created the arctic, the mountains, the valleys, the caves, the forests, the planes and all the creatures that would live in them. Then she was satisfied for a time. Her creation was so wonderful and so complex that she decided merely to watch for a while. Soon she realized though, that the creatures she had created were beautiful and interesting, but could never truly think and were entirely unappreciative of their own existence, which she sustained.

That is when she created the first humans whom she placed in nearly every area of the earth. She gave them intelligence, insight, art, craftsmanship and language; all qualities that she possessed and was proud of. She also created the stars and the heavens so that the humans would know what she could do and so they would be in awe of her power, and they praised her.