25. The Mysteries of Monophysitism
Izzy did not make it back that night. He was being detained, I learned, in an Egyptian hoosegow. Sarvaduhka ran the message over to me. He had to pay one of his Cairo prostitutes one hell of a baksheesh, he said, to guide him, on the back of a camel, through Nazlet El-Semman over to the western funerary complex, and on to the enclosure, my enclosure. Mastaba by mastaba they crept. It gave Sarvaduhka the willies.
Sarvaduhka’s guide was a Coptic Christian, Lila Kodzi, who discoursed on the mysteries of Monophysitism at the most inappropriate moments. Sarvaduhka complained about it. He seemed to think I was God. He told me everything. At the moment of orgasm (Sarvaduhka’s orgasm?she didn’t have them) she would curse the Council of Chalcedon, some fifteen hundred years past, and she would vociferously affirm, in excellent English, the one divine nature of Christ, as Sarvaduhka twitched and spasmed, emitting expletives in three Sanskrit-derived languages.
Sarvaduhka and his shakti huddled at my hindquarters as lights flashed brilliantly on the pyramids of Cheops and Chephren and on my own disintegrating limestone hulk. It was just at the end of the late Friday night sound and light show, the German language one. The show must have been impressive for souls with human bodies and eyes, but all the information was false. As I said, it was I who made Chephren, and not the other way round.
26. What We Can Learn from Linguini
There’s nothing like a few thousand years in the sand to give you a certain sense of perspective. Something deep inside me had loosened up in the millennia since my New Mexico adventure, which, I now understood, preceded the Fourth Dynasty just as much as it followed it. Don’t let the dates fool you.
The people who wrote down the Bible understood this kind of thing. Look and see: Genesis, XIX:3, for example. Lot bakes matzohs?Passover bread?in his house in Sodom. But this was before Moses, before the exodus from Egypt, before Passover started, with the unleavened bread the Children of Israel baked in the sun while the current Pharaoh was saddling horses. Israel (i.e., Jacob) hadn’t even been born yet. So what was Lot doing baking matzohs back in Sodom?
If Izzy has taught me anything at all, it’s that clock time isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Sometimes five p.m. comes a week or two before six, and sometimes they’re simultaneous. The so-called excluded middle is positively a jungle, teeming with unenumerated possibilities. And causality, so far from being the one-dimensional line that Kant and even Hume talked about, is as wild as linguini on a rolling boil.
Where I now live, for example, on Sanduleak, the surface temperature is three or four hundred times what it is on Earth or Mars. Since Sandy went supernova and contracted to a neutron star, it’s a thousand degrees Kelvin?in the shade! That makes things go pretty fast. By Earth scale, a decent life span for a citizen on Sandy is maybe a quadrillionth of a second. It feels like a long time here. You’d think a bridge like that could never be gapped, that Earthers and Sanduleans could never communicate, and you’d be right except that, in this man’s universe, there is no absolute standard. We have a sliding scale. And I mean sliding!
The Earther Protagoras had it right:
Man is the measure of all things.
Well, not Man, but Mind really, not to be anthropocentric. All those scales and numbers and laws of science are just hypostatizations of something that actually belongs to the realm of Mind. Mind made them. Mind measures them. Mind compares, adjusts, interprets, changes. That’s what the epoche is all about, for example. That’s why Shaman was such an imminent threat even from a couple hundred million miles away, even if it had been light-years away?c is not the top speed in this man’s universe, not when you can do an epoche. Nature is a lot less rigid than that, believe me.
Look at linguini.