time Sempad could get away from school, he would go to the mill to see
Petros. He enjoyed going there, thirty steps down under the ground, dark,
cool and mysterious.
clay lamp illuminated that underground cave, day and night, while the millstone
ran around and around, pushing the flour into a wooden container set on
the floor in front of it.
wheels were not visible. They were below the stone floor, where they received
the push of the running water through a long box of crude heavy boards.
hum filled the interior of the mill, with a haze of flour floating in the
the place was cold and damp the year round, Petros always had a fire burning
in the fireplace.
he was an illiterate individual, he was a keen observer and a radical thinker
with the most charming personality.
ironically about everything in the Moush dialect and his philosophical
reflections were very colorful.
to tell Sempad, with pride, that the Host of the Mass was prepared out
of his flour. His flour was not ordinary, but different, because
every time the millstone went around and around angels danced on it, singing
Heavenly melodies. The flour, thus produced, smelled more like Heaven than
day when they were sitting by the fireplace conversing, Petros suddenly
got up, held Sempad by the hand and took him to the farthest corner of
the mill. That was where the water flowed through the aqueduct. He showed
him a rectangular stone on the floor.
you know what this is?” he asked.
what kind of a stone?
is a petrified Bible,” he said and looked at Sempad inquisitively. Noticing
his astonishment and confusion, he continued: “Yes! It used to be
a Bible, when they covered it in this bottomless pit centuries ago.
A monk used to operate this mill then. He used to hear whispers, voices,
footsteps as if people were secretly approaching the hole. He was so terrified
one day, he had to report it to the head of the Monastery. In a meeting
of the priests and monks it was decided to cover the pit with a huge handwritten
Bible they had in the library. It should be a sure thing against the devils
who were trying to come out of the underground world where they lived.
They covered it hermetically with a liturgical ceremony and retired to
their cells with complete assurance that the problem had been solved.
they were! The sounds kept coming. The shouts and laughter mingled with
the constant hum of the millstone and the murmur of the stream produced
a gruesome and a lethargic atmosphere.
Monks could not operate the mill anymore. They were so terrified. This
state of affairs continued through long centuries to the present time.
You know the rest of the story that led me to become the miller of the
the monks heard that I had become their miller, they smiled ironically,
and felt sorry for me.
after day I realize how wrong they were in their appraisal. I am the one
who should feel sorry for them. They cannot realize what they were missing
in not taking the job.
where the sounds came from. It was from the graveyard of humanity. The
spirits of our ancestors walk around laughing, conversing, shouting. They
look somewhat worried at the overpopulation of the subterranean world.
I have even met some of my friends there, who died years ago. They were
very happy, indeed, and were getting along fine with the devils. I don’t
know why people always talk about them. They are wonderful, clean, jolly
talk as if you have already been there.”
course I have,” said Petros. “I eat with them every night. I drink with
them; I play and dance with them when I am in bed asleep. Had it not been
for them I would not have been able to work here a single day. Without
them, this place would be a sepulcher. We have the most wonderful festivities
there every night. The other day I even came across my Hasmig who
had died years ago. She looked much younger and very beautiful. The devils
married us in a cathedral in the presence of our nine Vartabeds.”
you in the presence of our nine Priests?” asked Sempad.
They married us then, and they marry me every night to a different woman.
The other night, my wife not being there, they married me to a devil. She
was the most beautiful girl I had ever met, and we had a marvelous time
together. There were lakes, streams, flowers, music, thousands of people
dancing, drinking, playing...it was just wonderful. There is always something
going on...feasts, weddings, symphonies, theatrical works...everything...
of dead humanity is there, living with the devils in brotherly love. We
have a very wrong idea about them. They are very sociable and friendly.
The Satanic empire is undergoing a radical change now. Their leaders think
the spirits of dead humanity and those still alive should cooperate with
the devils to urge God to ease the entrance requirements to Heaven!! A
mutual agreement or compromise is necessary. Some of their philosophers
think we are inclined more toward the divine teachings, and therefore suggest
we should all unite our forces to revolt against Heaven, that desolate
immensity with no population at all.
We have a very wrong idea about the satanic world. Have we ever thought
that all of the politicians, the kings and queens, the teachers and writers,
the poets and priests are friends of the devils; followers of Satan.
subterranean world is becoming overcrowded. As things stand, it is going
to get worse, because nobody can qualify to enter Heaven. All of humanity
has been living on the Earth above or below ever since the Creation,
and nobody has ever had a chance to go up there, to cultivate its immense
expanse of land.
and Earth must come to some kind of understanding. If God wishes to see
Heaven populated, He must ease its entrance requirements.
day, I was having fun with a girl on the bank of the Euphrates Aradzani
river, when Diavolos, a devil friend of mine, stopped a little distance
from us hollering: Come on Petros! That’s enough. The meeting is about
to start. Let’s get there early so we can stand closer to the platform.
I left my girl right away and joined him. We squeezed our way through the
crowd and onto where the speaker, an enormous cliff stood majestically,
facing an audience of hundreds of thousands of people.
cliff, they said, was a renowned philosopher of the satanic world, professing
to be a mediator between Heaven and Earth, God and Satan.
a huge granite rock, standing in the center of the Moush prairie
wrinkled by time and blackened by lightning strikes. When the cliff began
to speak in a deep baritone voice, eagles flew away from their nests on
top of the cliff and circled over the crowd. The words came out of his
mouth like shooting stars and the spirits listened to him attentively.”
cannot be governed any more by antiquated abstractions.”
ran through the entire audience, and then, they were silent.
and Satan are recognized as antipodes.”
flutter shook the crowd but this time stronger than before and then, silence.
supposedly represents all moral principles in their highest plane while
Satan is being pictured as His irreconcilable enemy, black and bloodthirsty.”
of “No!” came from the thousands of the devils.
wisdom pictures God as Light and Charity, and Satan as darkness and plague.”
murmur ran through the audience with exclamations of “No! it is
to these wise men, God is Almighty and Omniscient, while Satan is an impotent
and senseless criminal.”
A roar of anger broke out among the crowd, and they shouted “No! No!
“The devils were not the only ones who burst out in anger,” said Petros,
“all of the dead humanity joined them in their protest.”
cliff continued, “Satan only laughs at such untrue abstractions and holds
God responsible for the unhappiness and tribulations of mankind. While
He requires complete submission to His will, Satan stands for free individualism,
with no submission to any ruler.”
Bravo!” shouted thousands of mouths.
history of people has shown that, so far, Satan has had the upper hand
in his revolt against God. Leaders of humanity with masks on their
faces, harangue, give tearful sermons, cry in the churches or temples,
while sharpening their knives in secrecy...
they been sincere, they should strive to reconcile these two natural forces
by curbing some of their unnatural tendencies.
forces are indestructible and it is good that they are.
Universe is inconceivable. Imagine the endless space as an ocean of light,
pure and spotless. What would be the beauty of it without night and
day, without mountains and forests and lakes and prairies and clouds and
lightning and colors and stars.
humanity converted into an innocent and docile herd of sheep, with no will
of its own, no initiative abilities, always subject to the whip of the
shepherd and the barking of the dogs...no social problems, no revolting
stand, no friction of thoughts and actions.
tolerate complete domination of light nor of darkness, no sheepish humanity
nor an animal jungle.”
Bravo!” thundered the crowd.
wise blending of these characteristics is an urgent social problem: Love
and hatred; greed and moderation; avarice and contentment; sadness and
happiness; lust and moderation; industriousness and laziness; mental vivacity
and intellectual lethargy; all these forces which regulate and stimulate
normal growth and development of the individual with an intelligent use
negative and positive forces are indestructible. They are the pillars upon
which rise the lives of individuals and nations.
problem is not so much to eradicate these forces, as it is to minimize
their antagonism. To reconcile God and Satan, or Heaven and Earth. A compromise
settlement of this eternal conflict is an urgent case.”
applause shook the ground.
and non-Christian doctrines should throw to the winds some of their abstract
ideas and get closer to the Earth, Satan.
should also change his inimical attitude toward God by minimizing crime
God has not been able to compete successfully with Satan. Greed, lust,
material wealth and power, diplomatic machinations, international masquerade
parties, (conferences). All these are Satanic forces, yet unconquered.