There is no doubt that I have discovered the ultimate in stagnant human societies. The Bikura have realized the human dream of immortality and have paid for it with their humanity and their immortal souls.
My three~ years [of wordless existence] allowed me to see, to feel, to hear--to remember, as if I literally had been born again. Little matter that I had been born again in hell; reworked experience is the stuff of all true poetry and raw experience was the birthing gift of my new life.
It is a mystery, and to tell the truth, I am intrigued by mysteries even if this is to be my last week of enjoying them. I would welcome some glimmer of understanding but, failing that, working on the puzzle will suffice.
I confess that I felt something closer to exaltation than fear. Something inexplicable was happening. Forged in Jesuit logic and tempered in the cold bath of science, I nevertheless understood at that second the ancient obsession of the God-fearing for another kind of fear: the thrill of exorcism, the mindless whirl of Dervish possession, the puppet-dance ritual of Tarot, and the almost erotic surrender of seance, speaking in tongues, and Zen Gnostic trance. I realized at that instant just how surely the affirmation of demons or the summoning of Satan somehow can affirm the reality of their mystic antithesis--the God of Abraham.