On The Importance of Controlling Everything

Channelled from a lecture delivered by the Rev. Chas. Ward Beecher to an assemblage of Ponderosa Pine numbering in the thousands.

NB: The Additional Channelled Essays of Rev. Beecher are not presently available. My cat became sick on them, unfortunately, and they have not been yet retyped. Nor, perhaps, will they be. -- H. Wms., Ed. (c) 1994

an essay

In the tides of fortune there floats the expectation that Life will, finally, meet our expectations. That hoped-for and, perhaps, someday-to-be-grasped Ideal bears us ofttimes through the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.

Why is this?

What irrepressible Spirit in Mankind abides in the sure knowledge that the Universe exists to be subdued and controlled? Whence derives our magnificent drive to dominate all; to urinate, once and for all, on the fence posts of Eternity?

It is a mystery.

Let us, then, wax our eloquence.


Is it not right; is it not meet that we should gambol in the Fields of Elysium one day, even as we gambol in the mudpie of Moloch here, in this, our visible life? Is it not our destiny to challenge the very Elcar fencing(tm) of heaven's gate through our fortitude, our enduring self-love and our hubris? Is it not obnoxious to read people who can only make their points through rhetorical questions?

That the species of Mankind was formed of the mud and clay of the Earth to make the whole world, and the Universe beyond into a mudpie with a flaky clay crust is beyond question. But to what purpose, to what end may Humankind bend its sweaty brows in the accomplishment of this end? And to what purpose in fighting the Universe itself, if the Universe is, obviously, much bigger than us, and would whip us in any fair fight, no matter how drunk we might manage to make the Universe?

Obviously, we'll have to rely on quickness and deception.

Whence derives, then, this unquenchable thirst in each one of us to fully command our surroundings? The mere fact that we can transform a tree into a birdhouse with louvered blinds, and shutters, and a pitched roof in a Late-Victorian style seems rather pointless in its teleology. Was not the tree already a birdhouse? Of course! we must reply, but that is not the point.

Life is no improvised dance, but an endless and pitiless urge to order. We emerged from the teeming pool of stygian chaos, and diligently have maneuvered to regulate all the moments of our lives, from cradle to grave. This was not an easy struggle. It was not without its rigors: its arduous ascents, its crushing defeats and its stunning victories.

The wristwatch was bought for us only by the sacrifice of countless lives, through numberless minutes and hours learning to make files smaller and smaller until, at last, we could carve the tiny little gears which would give us mastery over time itself.

And what of the terrible conflicts and upheavals which made it possible to standardize time, so that, anywhere there might be an uplink, anyone, ANYONE could set his or her wristwatch to the right time? And this only a minor skirmish in the war to subdue chaos.

If, as some pessimists believe, the laws of Entropy are, finally, unbeatable, we have already conceded that struggle to Entropy. But is not our history one of achieving the improbable in the face of the impossible? The imperfect in the face of the important? The impassable in the face of the impervious? Are we not impressive?

Cynics, men of little faith and smaller intellect, have claimed that it would be impossible to travel from Portland to Boise in less than a week. Now, we fly!

Critics, those who cannot write writing about those who can, have belittled and abandoned any hope that chaos can be controlled, and yet Major League Baseball has not missed a year of play, even when Europe was in flames, and the whole world arrayed in full battle bear to strive in the greatest expenditure of gunpowder Marco Polo could ever have imagined.

We must buck up.

The odds are long, but the risk of defeat is too intolerable.

Even now, our implacable foe moves against us, locked tight in the death-grip of an arm-wrestling tournament that is smugly believes it cannot lose. Rust never sleeps.

But the race is not to the swift, nor the victory to the strong. There are too many ways of bribing the referees, of drugging the racehorse, of training at high altitude with anabolic steroids. Chaos need not be treated fairly to win. We can cheat.

And, in a contest for our very lives, the day will come when actuaries will be able to breathe easily, at last. When the very word "accident" will fade into meaninglessness itself, as have such chestnuts as "Iron Curtain," "States' Rights" and "Liberal Republican." randomness is a force, true, but Mankind has made sense rule where senselessness had never been challenged before. And we have done it with a completion percentage that would make Vince Lombardi proud.

Consider algebra, or consider the Leap Year.


It is Man's destiny to not merely endure, but prevail, said one. And, we might add, it is also Woman's destiny to prevail not merely, but to have her cake and eat it too. As Marie Antoinette stated so succinctly, with an equanimity which included not merely her class, nor only those who spoke whatever Austrians speak for their first language: "Let them eat cake." And so we shall, with diligence and an unwavering devotion to universal empowerment, at last eat that very cake.

But this is merely icing. What must be recognized; what must be finally acknowledged is the unquenchable thirst to micro-manage Reality which is every human's birthright. We were born with an aversion to disorder. Ultimately and finally, we, the last and greatest hope of Mankind, must prevail.

The Universe is a large place, but we are quick learners, and it is not in our nature to accept the chaotic mess of Nature, no matter how cute we may find bunny rabbits and squirrels. The spontaneity of mindless ants must never again menace the picnic basket which is our lives. To be or not to be--precisely, with no wishy-washiness--is our birthright and Destiny.


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