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So this is an IM conversation that my friend Mary and I had about a year ago wherein she was attempting to help me sort out some of the “how my world works” issues. I came across it again today and not only did it remind me of some of what I had been thinking, I found it a bit humorous, too.  So if you’re a thinker, I hope you enjoy our philosophical rants.  And if you have any ideas or suggestions, feel free to comment!

Lori Ann: Tried to dream about how Areskia “exists no more” but didn’t fully work… So am thinking that somehow it is the spirit or essence of Areskia which gives this shadowcraft or whatever its power…Neither the Aggelos, nor the Aposkamia nor the humans experienced death until that one day when the battle took place…Up until that time those who got sick could be healed (the humans by those with gifts and the Aggelos by singing the song) and there was no death by violence yet…

Mary: yeah – spiritual forces work well

Lori Ann: (but is it weird to only have one?)

Mary: but the gifts Anatole has could be spiritual in nature too

Lori Ann: The Aposkamia, I figure, could somewhat heal themselves, albeit slowly, because of all the “light/life” they ‘took in’ from the time they rebelled till the Creator re-relegated the light… well, they’re spiritual in the sense that they were given by the Creator. Whom I guess is technically spirit because He ‘encased himself’ in flesh to become a part of their world… But both the Aggelos and Ammi races were made of the earth… But I guess I could go with there being something that surrounds the earth that the fabric of the earth was woven around that is spiritual…

Mary: right – the Force! :P:P jk

Lori Ann: grr….

Mary: or you could go plato

Lori Ann: eew! NO PLATO!

Mary: oh, what did Plato ever do to you…

Lori Ann: Greek philosophy has damage in Christendom…

Mary: not to mention in collegedom…

Lori Ann: :))  So am thinking that Diabolos and Areskia had a fight right before the attack on the kingdom – where Areskia was severely wounded – but didn’t die because of the strength/life she had consumed… And she is wounded and ‘dying’ and in the lands north of the Phragmos Sea (but far East of the kingdom) and stumbles upon a river…

Mary: ah, water imagery good…

Lori Ann: and as she drinks she notices that more strength flows in her and the wounds start healing faster…

Mary: BEER!!!!  :P:P

Lori Ann: So she follows the river towards the source and has to dive in when she reaches a place where it seems to come out from under a mountain.

Mary: I like so far!

Lori Ann: And inside is a Heiros garden – and until then none of the gardens had been discovered. Now the gardens were small pockets of the original creation that Hosiotes hid when he relegated the sun and moon… So inside the garden light is still emitted from everything. And – though I haven’t finished working out details – I figure that, given the opportunity, the Aposkamia can still devour light/life… well, that original light/life… And she’s been so yearning it since the Creator changed things….

Mary: makes sense – they didn’t change substance, right?

Lori Ann: And so she is able to start absorbing it… No, didn’t change substance, but did shift the way the substance worked… Instead of either emitting or devouring light/life it remained stationary – containing life and reflecting/absorbing light like our bodies do (for color and such)

Mary: right, but their “original programming” for lack of a better term was still intact

Lori Ann: yeah – something like that… But – and now that we’re chatting it’s making more sense…. I figure there has to be a limit… and, if like I described, they’re bodies now ‘contain’ life, then as she absorbs it it’s not quite as a bottomless pit as it once was… So she is still depleting the light/life from the garden (which becomes barren and dries up the river) – she’ll get to a point where her physical body can’t sustain it… And so somehow she kinda vaporizes and becomes this bodiless essence… of course, it has to make sense in terms of darkness, too… hmmm…

Mary: true – absorb enough darkness, you become it

Lori Ann: but she’s absorbing light – devouring it because she IS dark.

Mary: so she would become light? …wait – is she the good one or the bad one

Lori Ann: Maybe it’s like eating – if you eat too much even of good stuff, the way your body handles it doesn’t necessarily mean good stuff comes out, right?  …she’s bad.

Mary: okay – that’s what I thought

Lori Ann: but the light/life also provides a sort of control over the creation – at least this does because the rest of creation doesn’t ‘work’ that way anymore…

Mary: perhaps her “body” rejects the light – like an allergy

Lori Ann: but how would she retain the power?

Mary: She uses it, but it takes a toll… losing her physical state?

Lori Ann: the power is that she can consume the light of the Heiros garden and make it dark… maybe?

Mary: But if she consumes light like a black hole – then there could be some seed of good (albeit utterly compressed)

Lori Ann: well, she was created good…

Mary: A little hope?

Lori Ann: no hope for her… she’s worse than the White Witch!

Mary: so were black holes – but they continue to consume and never go back to being a sun (or so we think) :D:D …until they explode! :P:P  …If we go that approach, then there could be a cycle through the ages, good to bad to utterly bad to kaboom then back to the beginning

Lori Ann: the world is only like 1000 years from start to finish.  …too Eastern philosophy for me!  …except physically she is no longer a black hole…just spiritually.  hmm… wonder where people ‘go’ when they die in my world? Do people in my world have souls or spirits?  this is getting difficult… …so I thought of how spirit/death works in my world… but kinda fear it might actually make the Areskia thing harder!

3 hours later

Lori Ann: Orson Welles? Seriously?

Mary: go figure…  room’s dark…

Lori Ann: likely excuse. :P:P so let’s see if I can do this in short since I need to go to bed!  I’m not really making body and spirit separate… in our world God made humans from the earth and breathed life (nephesh = “spirit”) into them… in my world the creator dropped a drop of blood on some flowers and sang to them…

Mary: so each person has a piece of spirit – could anyone have power, then?

Lori Ann: But something Dad said at dinner about “being dormant” after death made me think of Paul’s imagery of the seed in the grown – sown perishable and raised imperishable…

Mary: hmm… interesting

Lori Ann: So when people die in my world it’s not like the spirit separates from the body… the whole person is dormant – like a seed kinda.

Mary: gotcha  …But somehow Anatole “woke up”?

Lori Ann: I’m just making it so that there is no separation between spirit and body.

Mary: right. Stick it to the greco-romans! :P:P

Lori Ann: amen!  …no – she didn’t exist before she was born or anything – she was endowed the gift by the Creator – the first since they died out.  Of course, some think the Creator/King is dead… but he’s not really…

Mary: right – He’s dormant too… or at least it seems so

Lori Ann: well, people assume he died since he was dying last they saw him….

Mary: okay

Lori Ann: but here’s the thing, because he had encased himself in the substance of that world… oh shoot, there I go again with two substances. stupid Greeks – can’t get away from it!

Mary: so the physical died …oh crap – that doesn’t work either  **shakes fist at the ancient Greeks**

Lori Ann: well, I never really say- but the idea I had is that since he was dying, in order for him to not die he had to shed the physical body he’d put himself in – and in shedding it his true glory would be seen and it would have killed all the people because they were disobedient (ie. sinful) at that point…. But I HAVE to have two substances – so to speak – for the creator! Because otherwise it would be pantheism or panentheism… What he created was separate from himself…

Mary: what if He took the form of a man – can we use Arian? Arius?

 Lori Ann: Then he encased himself in that substance… gave himself a body.

Mary: But if they were in the Image…

Lori Ann: no, need something substantive, not just appearances – oh wait, that was gnosticism!  …they weren’t in the image.

Mary: ah

Lori Ann: that is one place the theology differs.

Mary: hm. I think we’ve painted ourselves into a corner…

Lori Ann: except to say that it is his blood that gave them form and his song that gave them life… where are Tolkein and Lewis when I need them?

Mary: so if they were formed from His blood, can they be made of the same substance as the Creator? …But that doesn’t work either

Lori Ann: well… Creator called into existance a lump of clay from which he formed the earth – dirt, grass, flowers, animals, wind, water, currents – sculpted it. Then he clothed himself in that clay and set himself on the earth.

Mary: right – and He formed them from His blood on the flowers …so clothing does not necessarily mean He was of two substances

Lori Ann: It was when he stood and lifted his eyes that the place was filled with light and life – which at that point are rather insuperable.  …right. he is just different than his creation – but in order to walk among them as was his heart’s desire, he clothed himself with the substance of their world. But their essence I guess would be more like living substance…. I guess he could have chosen anything to make people out of – dirt, flowers, clouds, water, animals…  It was his blood and song that set them apart from the rest of creation.  Possibly connecting them to his very essence?  though there I’m back to two substances, aren’t I?  I do mention that the song connects the people to his mind, heart and will….

Mary: maybe, unless His essence was like a seed and they are the plant or flower that sprang from it – looks different than the seed, behaves different from the seed. Yeah, leave it to the Expert….:P:P

Lori Ann:  :))  Perhaps I should pray for some divinely guided dreams tonight to help work out my world?

Mary: There ya go, man!

Lori Ann: I love my creation story – I think it’s beautiful and there was so much theology that I worked through even in it – but now it’s getting even more complicated!

Mary: That’s what happens when you start thinking…

Lori Ann:  yeah.. don’t ya just hate it? But it’s 9 and I really shoudl be in bed…. Lovely chatting with you again – perhaps we can continue another time? :P:P

Mary: yep – get some rest


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reality?

“I am tired, worn and thin. Like the Nothingness is coming after me. Like Bilbo when he said he felt like butter spread over too much toast. Like Luke feeling cold and afraid in the bog. Like Frodo sensing and dreading the power of the ring. Like Jean Grey when her powers were beyond her control…” the young woman said to her therapist.

But her therapist merely nodded his wrinkled green head and sighed, “Happens, this does, when live in every world except your own, you do.”

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Autumn Path

So last week someone mentioned me and poetry. And it’s been a long time (a long time indeed!) since I’ve written any. But today, traveling a winding road back home from Purcellville, I was caught up in the beauty of autumn and the beauty of the Creator. Phrases and images came to mind for the first in a long time. And so, tired as I am this night, I felt that I could not yet sleep until it had been poured out of my head and unto paper. Well, technically, typed onto the computer (but it’s more poetic to say it the other way). So here is my first offering in a long time….
_____________________________
I journey down the well-worn path
winding through the weary mountains,
a gray-soaked day with autumn chill,
trees revealing the Master’s hands.

My breath is stilled.

Yellow brilliance shouts of the orb
created to light on day four,
orange is aflame like the fire
at night by Israel going before,
and crimson calls my mind to blood
shed as curse, so I’m saved and blessed.
The foggy mist blankets the sod,
secure as His loving-kindness.

Glory to God.

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(©2009 Lori Ann Gossert)

For the past several years the one thing that I keep coming back to at Easter is what happened from the time Jesus was laid in the tomb till the Marys found it empty. About 48 hours of silence. Where did they go? What did they do? What were they thinking? Feeling?

In the past few years I’ve lost several people and been to more than enough funerals. And I imagine some of the same things we go through during our mourning were similar to what they went through. But the deaths in my life haven’t been completely unexpected. Nor cruel. Nor the apparent end of all my beliefs, hopes and reasons for doing what I was doing…

So bear with me awhile as I ponder, as I take a few moments to ask aloud my questions and imagine the scenes during that 48 hours of darkness and despair…

Like where did everyone go after they fled the garden when Jesus was arrested? We know John (and then Peter) ended up following (at a distance) as Jesus was taken before the Sanhedrin. But where did the rest of them go? Most weren’t from Jerusalem… did they find friends and family to stay with? Would friends and family have even been willing to take them in? Did they go back to Bethany with Lazarus and his sisters where they were likely staying that week? Did they go back to the upper room, the last place they were with Jesus, trying desperately to hold onto those last few minutes?

What about Friday? The trials, the beatings, the crucifixion? We know that John and Mary (Jesus’ mother) and some of the other women were at the cross. What about Peter? Did he, after the third denial passed his lips and the rooster’s crow rang in his ears and the eyes of Jesus met his own spend the night in a dark corner somewhere weeping bitterly… and then when the tears ran dry and the day dawned did he feel a burning guilt that drove him to Golgotha for just one chance to say how sorry he was, one chance to try and make it right – only to arrive as Jesus took his last breath? What about Thomas? He will later say that he won’t believe (Jesus is alive) until he puts his fingers in the nail holes and his hand in his side… nail marks would have been standard for a crucifixion, but a spear in the side was not… so was he in the crowd that afternoon, on the fringes, watching from a distance?

There was a concern to get Jesus body down and buried before the Sabbath, which began at sundown. Did they – out of habit, out of fear or simply because they didn’t know what else to do – find themselves gathered together into one place? Perhaps that memorable upper room? Did they dwindle in at various times Thursday night and Friday after fleeing Gethsemane or listening to the trials or observing the crucifixion or aimlessly wandering the streets at a complete loss as to what to think or feel or what to do or where to go? Was it the Eleven? some of the women? Were Matthias and Justus and other of Jesus’ disciples (outside of the Twelve) there, too? What about Lazarus and his sisters? They were always close to Jesus…

I can picture Martha. She’s one of those who like to keep their hands busy. I can see her going crazy sitting there among the assembled rag-tag bunch, tears dried to her face and making it tight, wringing her hands in pain and sorrow and worry and lack of something to do with them. She needs to keep busy. Her whole world has stopped and crashed around her but she can’t stop with it. She has to keep moving. And it’s sunset. The Sabbath is about to begin.
“It’s evening,” Martha says to no one in particular, her eyes distant and clouded as she rises, “I’ll prepare a Sabbath meal.”
Mary, who no longer has the opportunity to sit at Jesus’ feet, starts up after her sister out of love and loss, “I’ll help.”
But Lazarus catches Martha’s arm, tenderly forcing her to look at him, “no one’s hungry, Martha.”

I mean, really, who can even think about a Shabbat Shalom on a night like that?

Mourning, in some ways, drives us together. It is likely some went to their homes and some went off by themselves, but I would think that for the most part those who were closest to Jesus – those who had spent the previous three years walking and talking and living their lives with him – would have been drawn back to each other. Drawn to others they could share their confusion and fear with, others they could share their memories with… and it was all they knew. I imagine hours of silence. That icky silence where you feel as though you’re going mad because nothing is right with the world and nothing you thought you knew makes sense anymore. Weeping until no more tears would come or stone-faced in shock unable to shed the tears your broken heart was creating inside. Thoughts racing. Thoughts running over and over inside their heads. And silence. Interspersed here and there by a statement or question.
“Has anyone seen Peter?” someone asks.
“Not since the garden,” another replies, emotionally drained.
“He was with me in the courtyard of the high priest,” John adds, “for awhile.”
“Perhaps he went back to Joppa, to his family,” someone else suggests.
But we’re his family! Another thinks, but stops himself from saying it aloud. At least, we were. But it doesn’t feel like family now. In fact, nothing feels the same now.

A short while later Peter walks through the door. Everyone looks up, startled, then frightened until they realize who it is. He doesn’t exactly look like Peter. He’d had his head and face covered for fear of being recognized, his gait was slower than usual and his face was dirty and contorted, every agony in his mind and heart etched in deeply. His eyes were red and puffy and it was obvious that he had been weeping, long and bitter. Several turned their eyes away, unsettled by his appearance. Peter wasn’t exactly the kind of man you would picture weeping.

Peter looked around at the aimless group who had found each other. He’d noticed their fear when he had entered the room and the hopelessness in their eyes was readily apparent, mirroring his own. They were looking at him. Looking to him. Don’t look to me! I’m not your leader… I’m not any kind of leader. But he felt protective of them, concerned for their well-being. They were so vulnerable right now. We all are. Peter sighed. “Lock the doors.”

(I hope to continue this someday…)

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This is Netanya. It means “a gift.” (“Gift” reference Firefly episode “Serenity Part 1”)

The first picture on the left is her before “the academy.” Brilliant, upperclass young girl happy as can be.

The second is her on the way to “the academy.” She didn’t really want to go, it was her older brother’s idea (who works for the Alliance and knew what they would do to her).

The middle picture is after she gets rescued by the crew of the Firefly. That was the start of my dream the other week. But she’s got lots of secrets.

The last two on the right are her working with the crew on “jobs” using her special “skills.” Note in the first she’s more like herself and in the far right one she’s dressing more like Mal and Zoe – perhaps mockingly? They still don’t like her much. Of course, if some secretive, mute girl with special abilties and a tendency to “freak out” was onboard your ship, you might feel the same way. Let’s just say that she was further along in the progam than River was and had already been sent out by the Alliance on “missions.” But she can also control herself and her command words better than River can…

This story won’t last… and probably won’t get written down… but it’s been kinda fun. Exercise in creativity.

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So sometime late last week I had this dream. Now, if you know me at all, you know my dreams are typically vivid, wild and ecclectic. This was no exception. But something happened in the dream that hasn’t happened for a long, long time. I dreamt in character.

Now, this character didn’t exist until that dream. She was born in the dream (not literally, but literarily). If you’ve ever seen the show Firefly or the movie Serenity, you’ll understand this a bit better. Because that was the world. I was in it. I was in that place where they had kept River and apparently I had some special abilities similar (yet different) than hers. I was able to fake an inactive brain scan, mentally call out to River and ask her (and the Serenity crew) to come and rescue me. I got myself out, I just needed picked up on time (think Luke’s rescue by Han et al after his first fight with Vadar and losing his arm). So they did. It took place shortly after the movie ended… And I was mute but able to project my “words” into other’s minds (similar to Jenny but her projections were audible not mental). And apparently I would faint without warning and could walk through walls and read others perceptions and had some sort of telekinetic ability. It was pretty complex and pretty cool. Mal doesn’t care for me much.

So I kept the story going when I woke up. And since it started I have entered back into and continued the story in my dreams. Which is even more rare than dreaming in character. It’s been fun. And I created a Yahoo Avatar that might be her. But she’s still nameless.

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<a href=”<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/earthenvessels/511560399/&#8221; title=”Photo Sharing”Lynen“>

This is Lynen Alexis Garson, my newest character. Hopefully I’ll be able to start working on her backstory soon. She’s part of a comic-verse created by my friends Mary and Scott. She may even be as interesting as Jenny Grey.

The sketch is charcoal, ink and colored pencil (each figure a different medium). I’m no Michaelangelo, but I like it.

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