The Arch-absurd

“Not only has not a single one of them—having a Reason which, though strange, has nevertheless some resemblance to sane logic—ever yet doubted the causes of the said phenomena, but not a single one of them has manifested concerning these cosmic phenomena even that strange special property of their common psyche, which also became proper to the three-brained beings of that planet alone, and which is called ‘to fantasy.’ ”

Having said these last words, Beelzebub, after a little while, with a bitter smile, continued to talk as follows:

“You, for instance, have the normal presence of a three-brained being, and within your presence there is intentionally ‘implanted’ from without, ‘Oskiano,’ or as they say there on the Earth, ‘education,’ which is founded on a morality based solely on the commandments and indications of the UNI-BEING HIMSELF and the Most Holy Individuals near to Him. And yet, if you should chance to be there among them, you would be unable to prevent the process in yourself of the ‘being-Nerhitrogool,’ that is, the process which, again there on the Earth, is called ‘irrepressible inner laughter’; that is to say, you would not be able to restrain yourself from such laughter, if in some way or another, they were suddenly clearly to sense and understand, without any doubt whatever, that not only does nothing like ‘light,’ ‘darkness,’ ‘heat,’ and so on, come to their planet from their Sun itself, but that their supposed ‘source of heat and light’ is itself almost always freezing cold like the ‘hairless-dog’ of our highly esteemed Mullah Nassr Eddin.

“In reality, the surface of their ‘Source-of-Heat,’ like that of all the ordinary suns of our Great Universe, is perhaps more covered with ice than the surface of what they call their ‘North Pole.’