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As a way of visualizing how pervasive Evil is within this environment, I imagine that we, as corporeal human beings, are fish swimming in the open sea. The water that we live in, and depend on for survival, is made up of molecules that – instead of hydrogen and oxygen – consist of Evil and more Evil. In fact, when we breathe the water in through our little gills, instead of extracting the oxygen from the water, we extract the lesser, more benign Evil, before letting the greater, more horrid Evil pass through and back into the water around us. We do that because, frankly, it’s less disruptive to our lives, and we can focus on more lesser Evils if we don’t get bogged down in large, cumbersome Evils that will always demand a lot more from us.
From one gill-full of small Evil to the next, we make our way through life, and do our best to avoid the relative few who have made the error of taking a large, terrible Evil in through their gills. After all, if we’ve learn anything during life, it’s that the larger the Evil, the more cumbersome and demanding it will be, and that it won’t be satisfied with the whole of one fish alone. No, it’ll command the focus of as many fish as possible, until the original fish that extracted it from the water is isolated or destroyed.
I don’t know. Maybe this isn’t the best analogy – with the whole big Evil and little Evil as molecules of hydrogen and oxygen – but when you think of fish and how they live in water, breathe water, and how water is essential to their physical existence to the point where a lack of water will literally kill them, then the analogy is pretty accurate.
In fact, if you think about the percentage of fish who never, ever, leave the water for any reason, then the analogy between fish in the sea and humans in a metaphoric sea of life-giving Evil is even more accurate. And if you think about the fact that fish have no idea that they live in water – as opposed to not living in water, as if the thought that there is any other way for anything to exist could even occur to a fish – then the analogy gets really good.
The truth is that human beings have no idea that competition is the essence of Evil, or that they compete all day, every day, and from moment to moment, just like those fish running water through their little gills so that they can continue to live.
Now, imagine a fish that leaps out of the ocean. Like a sailfish or a marlin. Or maybe even one of those flying fish that do it all the time. Once a fish like this has broken through the elastic film that separates the sky from the sea, it always knows – in whatever sense of knowing that a fish might posses – that there is a way to exist that is not surrounded by, pressed in by, enveloped within, a seemingly infinite amount of water. The sensation of circulating air, wind perhaps, or maybe even the heat of afternoon sunlight, must be a revelation for such a fish that has experienced it for a brief moment as its entire body is arching through open air, above that entire universe that is the only one its ever known.
Even at the fish level of realization, that first leap into the sky changes everything, and forever for the fish that makes that leap. It’s not just the difference that comes from discovering that there is a boundary that exists around its once-endless environment, and it’s not just the obvious difference in how it might perceive its own world, relative to the existence of this new and extremely foreign world. It’s the total sensation of being in that world, and how novel the entire experience would be for that couple seconds of total emersion. Some fish jump out of the water a lot, and for no real reason other than the fact that they do. Most fish don’t, but then, would they if they tried it once? Impossible to know.
When a human being achieves an Intellect burst consisting of true compassion, it’s the same kind of experience – for the human involved in that generation – as when one of those fish leaps out of the sea and stretches out for a second in the sun before dropping back into the deep. And the analogy here is pretty good, since most humans haven’t got the inclination to take that leap, even if they’ve ever known that such a leap is possible. This moment of Intellect generation is the same kind of revelation, and the entire environment is altered for the generating human in the same way that leaping into the air is for the fish. And, appropriately, this shift lasts just as long for both fish and human, with the newly compassionate human dropping back into the Evil depths of corporeal existence before the change in environment can become harmful to it.
Yeah, harmful. I did say harmful.
What you need to understand about true compassion – agape Love – is that as wonderful as it is in concept, within the context of corporeal existence, it’s totally lethal in extended doses. Think of the delightful image of a large rainbow trout flipping effortlessly in the sun before it splashes back into the clear waters of a northern lake, and then think of that same trout flipping frantically in the bottom of a bass boat. Too much of that escape into the fresh air, and that’s the end of our trout. Just like it needs the water, the corporeal human needs the Evil of competition in order to survive. It’s like the weight of gravity that keeps our bones connected to each other. Without that constant resistance, we will literally come apart.
People with no external stresses will always provide their own internal stresses. No discipline, no boundaries, no active resistance in a person’s life, ever, and the developmental damage is extraordinary. Now, the Evil can, and should be, benevolent, or at least benign for a beneficial impact, but a complete absence of Evil – well, I’m not even sure it’s possible, since the human involved will at least have the Evil inclination to take food for its own selfish use. Yes, Evil is any amount of competition. Even the most insignificant amount of self-centeredness. Like I said, raw compassion (true agape Love) is completely foreign and abhorrent to corporeal life, and while it is a gift in brief moderation, you wouldn’t last long if you decided to really take it on as a lifestyle.