And there was a certain wise man

Who was learned of many things above that of the most men

Yet he desired to learn much more

And so he constantly set within himself

The goal to learn more of the mysteries of life

And why men behaved as men

And as he slept one night a vision came to him

And an angel descended and said to him

“Come and I will show you many things”

And he took him to a long highway

Where the pathways of many men met and crossed

And here it was that he saw these men

Busily engaged in what appeared to be matters of the greatest importance

Some of these men carried small sticks and straws

And often selecting certain places

They leaned these sticks and straws together and said

“See now what I have accomplished

Is this not a wonderful building

And is it not more beautiful than all the others”

And as the wise man watched

The winds of adversity descended upon them

And their houses were blown away

And there were others too

Who builded by stealing sticks and straws from others while their backs were turned

Even so and as he watched

Some of these men seemed to pass away and were no more

Others who were closest rushed in

And dismantled their pile of sticks and straws

Carrying them away piecemeal

And as the wise man watched in greatest wonder

The Angel said “Look”

And as the wise man looked he saw others of the men

Who had covered themselves with fine garments

And had cried out to other men saying

“Look I am greater than all men

I have been sent by the gods to be your leader”

And those who heard him believed

And began gathering together

A great pile of sticks and straws and stones

And over this heap they placed

The name of he who commanded them

Even as they did so he had passed from their sight and hearing

Yes there were even those

Who had set themselves up a guard

So that none could steal from this great heap

There were even others

Who dressed themselves in similar robes

And made the same claim and declaration

So that again there was much activity

More carrying of sticks and stones

Even creating other great heaps in different places

Wherein others with bright raiment were set up as before

And as the wise man watched, astonished

He saw these men coming and going

Yet always did their faces seem familiar with each coming

As he had seen them before

And as he watched a great storm descended from Heaven

And the earth was made clean again

The sticks were scattered

To the four corners of the world

And the stones were piled in the stream beds

And as the wise man awakened

He was much perplexed at what he had seen in his vision

For even now the mystery of life

Seemed greater than before

And as he walked forth into the marketplace

He saw before him the piles of sticks and stones

And as he looked into the faces of his townspeople

He saw the men in his vision

Yes there were even those in his temples and churches

which had donned the bright raiment

The kings and emperors who rode through their palace gates

In golden chariots or palaquined horses

And finally there came the day

He stood beside a pool and looked within

And mirrored on its surface were all the wondrous beauties of Heaven

So real indeed did they seem

That he reached forth his hand to touch

And as his fingertips reached the water

The Heavenly vision broke

Into a thousand distorted fragments

Dancing away on the ripples

Then suddenly the meaning became clear

For he a man among men

Must be as all other men

Holding to himself in his earthly world

All of the things of the world

And as they were so contained with each man

Yet within there must always be

The pool wherein he could see

The reflected glories of the Heavens

Yet this pool must remain untouched by earthly fingers

It must always remain apart from his earthly world

For there indeed within the mirrored pool

Was the world of spirit, the world to come

For the man who learned to live

In this Heavenly place

And for such a creature there would be

No sticks or straws or stones

Nor would there be need

To fear the winds of adversity

For this world was complete

In all things unto itself

And there were no men in this world

To clothe themselves in bright raiment

For all men appeared equal and alike

And without raiment of any kind

And it was here too in this Heavenly world

That no man could cry more loudly than the next

Or that he was greater

For there was an abundance of all things needed

Yet each one gave as freely

As they received

For in the giving and receiving

Was found the sustenance of their lives

Nor could they receive without giving

Yet there was more to this Heavenly abode than could be realized

For always so it seemed, the wise man must journey on

One great Heavenly world leading yet unto another

Each one comprehended differently from all others

And so the wise man said unto himself

“Now I have learned what life is all about

And that we as men cannot set up

Either one small or large part

Of this life for ourselves

Neither should we declare ourselves

Superior in any way

But live only as little children

Learning of that hour and of that day

And taking with us only the wisdom of that learning

Unto the tomorrow

In this way we shall not become burdened

With the falseness of any day or any world

Nor shall we become convicted against ourselves

And refuse to learn the wisdom of tomorrow

By refusing to give up today

I shall become convinced of only one thing

That there is yet more to learn which will make my yesterdays

Pass into the morrows

And as the yesterdays pass into the morrows

In this manner and form

Will I journey into the future

Will I be able to reach with my fingers of thought

Into the mirrored pools wherein lie many Heavenly abodes

And as my thoughts reach and touch them

They shall not be defiled nor broken

Nor shall they scatter

On the winds of adversity”


E.L. Norman   December 1960

Submitted by: Gary on 02/09/2015

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