"It happens sometimes that even the best of intentions have a strange way of..."
|I don't really ascribe to any faith, but if I did, this is what I would hope for.
It happens sometimes that even the best of intentions have a strange way of turning out... well, less than perfect.
Such was the nature of His reflection as He sat contemplating His creation one day, some indeterminate number of millennia after its birth. Certainly things had gotten off to a good start, but somewhere along the way, due perhaps to an odd mixture of love, worship, and free will, a synapse in the cosmic nervous system had failed to fire and the results could only be described as... messy.
Somewhere in the universe, stars were being born in all their glory and planets spun happily in their orbits. On one particular celestial body, however, a bright blue and really very beautiful celestial body arbitrarily named Earth by her inhabitants, events were transpiring that would have given Him a headache were He capable of experiencing such a phenomenon. Instead He sighed, showing that eternal existence does not necessarily guarantee eternal patience.
He loved the people of Earth. They were all His children and He took pride in their busy, if sometimes not altogether straightforward, lives. Recently, though, the thought had crossed His mind that what they really needed was something along the lines of a Heavenly Spanking.
After taking a moment to indulge in this pleasant fantasy, He reluctantly set it aside, acknowledging that given their previous track record, even such an awesome event might not work the miracle He hoped for.
He had given them many chances in the past, but they had not used their time well and instead of getting better the state of affairs on Earth was arguably worsening. If He did not take a hand soon, His children may well find themselves up the proverbial creek without a canoe, much less a paddle.
The problem, in the end, was quite simple, boiling down to that bothersome substance called free will. Perhaps His children were right after all and there really was such a truth as "too much of a good thing". But no, taking away the source would undermine the whole object of life itself, and this He would not do. There must be another way.
He allowed His eye to wander restlessly over the world, but did not really expect to note anything different from what He already knew. Wars, famine, disease... His children fighting each other endlessly in the traditional and time-honored fashion of sibling rivalry, though they themselves never succeeded on making that particular comparison.
When first He noted the dim and distant flicker, He paid it little mind; there were bigger things to worry about. But the flicker remained, and as He turned his attention thither, He realized that it was not the only one of its kind. They dotted the globe, sometimes burning in clusters, sometimes isolated and alone. He felt a flutter of intrigue, as close to curiosity as anyone can achieve who already knew every aspect of everything.
These flickers were not unfamiliar -- none of His children were ever far from His thoughts -- but He had been content in times gone by to let them grow and flourish on their own. He had not neglected them, but knowing that they needed only life and light to shine, had given them that chance and turned His mind to their fellows, who were in need of much more guidance. Now, looking at them in the context of His own predicament, He perceived that they could be of use, to Him and to their brothers and sisters.
The flickers were a disparate lot. They shone with unequal brilliance. Some inhabited mansions, some a dark and dusty garret in a long forgotten neighborhood of slums. They existed in every part of the world, across every culture. They did not speak the same language nor were they always aware of their own existence and power. They were, in fact, not all believers and even if they were, they did not always believe in the same things.
In the end, He decided to call them the Creators, a name that both amused Him for its connotations to His children and its sheer aptness in describing this ragtag group.
They created. They shaped meaning from chaos. They wrote; they painted; they sculpted; they composed. Using nothing but their fertile imaginations, they constructed worlds, breathed life into their beloved characters. With an empty canvas and an eye to detail, they depicted their times in all its joy and suffering. From clay, from stone, from wood they called forth the contours of their world. And into the deep, smothering silence of the night they sent their words and their music and their dreams.
The Creators knew what it meant to truly love. They knew the fierce passion of the mother for her child, but also the gentle, heartfelt pride that allowed their works to grow beyond themselves, free from the possessiveness or fear of death that bound so many. And whatever other values they held, they all knew that the act of creation itself brings the soul closer to the divine.
Always before, the Creators had hovered on the edges of society; most never rose to prominence and many who did had not managed it within their own lifetimes. Most allowed the world to turn around them, feeling a detached sadness in its woes but perpetually maintaining an uninvolved distance. There were some who never used their talent, allowing it to be buried deep within the mundane. Others practiced it as a hobby, unwilling to commit their lives to such an uncertain future. Few indeed were the Creators who dipped fully into the pain of the world around them.
From His lofty vantage point, He examined the Creators and decided that their time of action had come. No more would they distance themselves. They could lose themselves in their craft if they wished, but it would be to serve a greater purpose. It mattered not if they knew that purpose, or if they were Believers or Non-Believers or Searchers of Truth. They would be His weapons in this new, unprecedented war on hatred, bigotry, injustice. He issued their call to arms.
On dark nights, in the hazy landscape of dreams, He planted the first seeds, gave the first subtle nudges that would bring the Creators out of their comfortable isolation. One by one, ever so slowly, pens were uncapped, typewriters dusted off. Tentative lyrics echoed forth, gradually gaining in strength. He knew that not all would heed the call, and not all who heeded would be heard. But enough would answer the thirst for peace, for joy, for happiness that He had instilled. Enough to make a difference.
His work done, He settled back to watch the results, every now and then lending a helping spark to a Creator in need of assistance. For the most part He waited. He had waited for years beyond counting, and He would wait for as many again if need be, for His children to find their way, to come to the realization that all men are brothers. That they would do so eventually, He had no doubt. All it would take was time, and that He had in abundance.
And everywhere, the Creators did His work.