I write a book for each of my children. Each book is broken into four parts. I have recently finished Part Three for the book that I am dedicating to my son, Magnus. Here is the beginning of Part Three:
The Fates command the lengths of our lives. For some, the allotment is long, rolling, and arduous; for others, short and brief, like a bursting nova. This, for us, appears arbitrary. Our final moments are drenched in a thick, gray fog. And while this can drive some to madness, it also imbues our very existence with mystery, a mystery so compelling that all of our learned women and men—our philosophers and theologians—opine endlessly on the soul, the body, and eternal consciousness. The answers provided (always inadequate) range from a suffocating surety to a vertiginous doubt.
What happens upon the Fates extending a thread to its fullest extent, raising their shears, and pronouncing their rightful and final judgment: “Enough?”
The simple answer—the least complex answer—is always the best answer. We do not know. And yet, as if rising from forlorn ashes, a question surfaces: On such a foundation can one build either a philosophy or an ideology for both right and virtuous practices?
Well, who can say? Certainly neither Nim nor Dardan. Yet, these questions, these primordial questions, ran through both their heads as, moving into the darkness of Gaius’ tunnel, they heard a slow, confident voice: “Hold, Dardan. You are betrayed and now held fast in the nets of the Established. Do not move. If you do, you shall die. If you stay, then you will be handled gently.”