The Simple Life Is Not So Simple

We are in debt, every one of us, to the people who brought the Work to us, and to those who brought it to them and to others too, along a line that stretches out into the dusty past.

AFTER the captain had gone, Beelzebub glanced at his grandson and, noticing his unusual state, asked him solicitously and with some anxiety:

“What is the matter, my dear boy? What are you thinking so deeply about?”

Looking up at his Grandfather with eyes full of sorrow, Hassein said thoughtfully:

“I don’t know what is the matter with me, my dear Grandfather, but your talk with the captain of the ship has brought me to some exceedingly melancholy thoughts.

“Things of which I have never before thought are now a-thinking in me.

“Thanks to your talk, it has gradually become very clear to my consciousness that in the Universe of our ENDLESSNESS everything has not always been such as I now see and understand.

“Formerly, for instance, I should never have allowed such thoughts associatively to proceed in me, as that this ship on which we are now flying has not always been as it is at this moment.

“Only now have I come very clearly to understand that everything we have at the present time and everything we use—in a word, all the contemporary amenities and everything necessary for our comfort and welfare—have not always existed and did not make their appearance so easily.

“It seems that certain beings in the past have during very long periods labored and suffered very much for this, and endured a great deal which perhaps they even need not have endured.
“They labored and suffered only in order that we might now have all this and use it for our welfare.

“And all this they did, either consciously or unconsciously, just for us, that is to say, for beings quite unknown and entirely indifferent to them.

“And now not only do we not thank them, but we do not even know a thing about them, but take it all as in the natural order, and neither ponder nor trouble ourselves about this question at all.

“I, for instance, have already existed so many years in the Universe, yet the thought has never even entered my head that perhaps there was a time when everything I see and have did not exist, and that everything was not born with me like my nose.

“And so, my dear and kind Grandfather, now that owing to your conversation with the captain, I have gradually, with all my presence, become aware of all this, there has arisen in me, side by side with this, the need to make clear to my Reason why I personally have all the comforts which I now use, and what obligations I am under for them.

“It is just because of this that at the present moment there proceeds in me a ‘process-of-remorse.’”

Having said this, Hassein drooped his head and became silent; and Beelzebub, looking at him affectionately, began to speak as follows:

“I advise you, my dear Hassein, not to put such questions to yourself yet. Do not be impatient. Only when that period of your existence arrives which is proper for your becoming aware of such essence-questions, and you actively mentate about them, will you understand what you must do in return.

“Your present age does not yet oblige you to pay for your existence.

“The time of your present age is not given you in which to pay for your existence, but for preparing yourself for the future, for the obligations becoming to a responsible three-brained being.

“So in the meantime, exist as you exist. Only do not forget one thing, namely, at your age it is indispensably necessary that every day, at sunrise, while watching the reflection of its splendor, you bring about a contact between your consciousness and the various unconscious parts of your general presence. Try to make this state last and to convince the unconscious parts—not as if they were conscious—that if they hinder your general functioning, they, in the period of your responsible age, not only cannot fulfill the good that befits them, but your general presence of which they are part will not be able to be a good servant of our COMMON ENDLESS CREATOR and by that will not even be worthy to pay for your arising and existence.

“I repeat once more, my dear boy, try in the meantime not to think about these questions, which at your age it is still early for you to think about.

“Everything in its proper time!

“Now ask me to tell you whatever you wish, and I will do so.

“As the captain has not yet returned, he must be occupied there with his duties and will not be coming back so soon.”