posted on Mar, 14 2009 @ 12:08 AM
"All my students ask me that question, at this point. But, I must confess, I find it strange that, while you are curious about the settings of the
Master Dial, you don’t ask why the Master Dial itself exists? To what purpose did the designers give us the Master Dial? Why would they give us a
single point of control for adjusting pleasure up or down? Why not simply hardwire the system to provide maximum pleasure to everyone within the Vault
of Souls, and leave it at that?"
Her students stirred slightly. "Yes," she said. "A profound question. Why does the Master Dial even exist? Why would the designers give attendants
the power to turn that Master Dial in the wrong direction, and with one single movement simultaneously change the bliss and pleasure of a billion
souls into unbending agony?"
She let that statement sink into them. "I know it is not the question you initially asked. But it is still worth examining. In fact, the answer to
that second question goes directly to answering your first. The Master Dial exists -- because we were trusted.
"We attendants were denied access to the very thing we were asked to attend to, burdened by chores of the physical world while the rest of humanity
drifted in immortal ecstasy. Those few of us left behind as attendants were given a god-like power over all those souls who passed.
"It was the designer's gift to us. We were denied. But we were compensated with the power to inflict eternal pain or pleasure on billions of
spirits, from a single simple control. No group of human beings has ever been handed more responsibility than that."
Her voice softened. She spoke reverently. "We have been supremely trusted. And it is our sacred vow never to violate that trust. That is the oath we
swear to, and obey each day."
"What I am about to tell you is revealed only to those who have taken their vows. It is recorded in our oldest journals. Shortly after everyone
entered the Vault of Souls, during one of the earlier maintenance cycles, the Master Dial had to be replaced. Really, a quite trivial task compared to
some of the difficult maintenance activities I will be teaching you in future lessons.
"But when the replacement was made, there was a point of confusion. What was the precise ordering of the two wires that connected the Master Dial?
The documents and blueprints were ambiguous! Had the Master Dial been properly rewired? Or had the leads been accidentally reversed?
"The entire purpose of the Vault was grievously jeopardized by this one uncertainty. It was a dark time for attendants. Think about our oath! Many
attendants despaired. A few even advocated the destruction of the Vault and all of its billions of souls! Better to destroy the machine, they argued,
and quickly end the lives of all its spirit inhabitants, rather than risk inflicting immense and endless agony on those billions we were sworn to
A shudder went through her, and was mirrored by her students in a soft wave of muttering. "I know. Shocking! But that was over a thousand maintenance
cycles ago. The final decision, hotly debated at the time, has become accepted as immutable law; every new generation of attendants accepts that
ancient decision as unbreakable, as I am teaching you today.
"So here is the answer to your question. Long ago, we attendants made a terrible blunder. Clockwise, or counter-clockwise? Which direction achieves
complete pleasure for the spirits we are entrusted to guard? And which direction inflicts immeasurable pain?
"We don’t know. That information has been lost forever.
"Do not judge! Although the blandness and tedium of eternity may seem a curse when you've been removed from heaven, it is also a blessing if you
have been spared from the tortures of hell.
"And so, the Master Dial is set where it is, and so it must forever remain -- positioned exactly the middle.