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datatime: 2022-09-27 08:29:47 Author:FeNNzJSu

Surely all of you know the pattern of their behavior. It's no different now than it was in our time. But what is different is the attitude of human beings to what spirits do; and that difference is crucial.

Marius nodded. Already he had numerous questions. But Maharet gestured for patience.Bear with me, she said.I will tell you all we knew of the spirits then, which is the same as what I know of them now. Understand of course that others may use a different name for these entities. Others may define them more in the poetry of science than I will do.

But you can see from what I'm saying that labels such as good and evil were self-serving. The good spirits were useful; the bad spirits were dangerous and nerve-wracking. To pay attention to the bad spirits-to invite them to hang about-was to court disaster, because ultimately they could not be controlled.

Now, as to where these spirits came from-they used to tell us that they had always been here. They would brag that they had watched human beings change from animals into what they were. We didn't know what they meant by such remarks. We thought they were being playful or just lying. But now, the study of human evolution makes it obvious that the spirits had witnessed this development. As for questions about their nature-how they were made or by whom-well, these they never answered. I don't think they understood what we were asking. They seemed insulted by the questions or even slightly afraid, or even thought the questions were humorous.

It is as if the human species has grown immune to such things; it has evolved perhaps to a higher stage where the antics of spirits no longer befuddle it. And though religions linger-old religions which became entrenched in darker times-they are losing their influence among the educated very rapidly.

Ghosts, of course, are spirits too. But they are without question spirits of those who have been human on earth; whereas the spirits I have been speaking of are not. However, one can never be too sure on this point. A very old earthbound ghost could forget that he had ever been alive; and possibly the very malevolent spirits are ghosts; and that is why they hunger so for the pleasures of the flesh; and when they possess some poor human being they belch obscenities. For them, the flesh is filth and they would have men and women believe that erotic pleasures and malice are equally dangerous and evil.

Why witches attract them or interest them I don't know either. But that's the crux of it; they see the witch, they go to her, make themselves known to her, and are powerfully flattered when they are noticed; and they do her bidding in order to get more attention; and in some cases, in order to be loved.

Surely all of you know the pattern of their behavior. It's no different now than it was in our time. But what is different is the attitude of human beings to what spirits do; and that difference is crucial.

Now, when I say that my sister and I were witches, I mean this: we inherited from our mother-as she had from her mother-the power to communicate with the spirits, to get them to do our bidding in small and significant ways. We could feel the presence of the spirits-which are in the main invisible to human eyes-and the spirits were drawn to us.

Surely all of you know the pattern of their behavior. It's no different now than it was in our time. But what is different is the attitude of human beings to what spirits do; and that difference is crucial.

We divided them as sorcerers have always done into the good and the evil; but there is no evidence that they themselves have a sense of right and wrong. The evil spirits were those who were openly hostile to human beings and who liked to play malicious tricks such as the throwing of stones, the making of wind, and other such pesty things. Those who possess humans are often 'evil' spirits; those who haunt houses and are called poltergeists fall into this category, too.

When a spirit in these times haunts a house and makes predictions through the vocal cords of a five-year-old child, no one much believes it except those who see and hear it. It does not become the foundation of a great religion.

Whatever their material makeup is, they have no apparent biological needs, these entities. They do not age; they do not change. And the key to understanding their childish and whimsical behavior lies in this. They have no need to do anything; they drift about unaware of time, for there is no physical reason to care about it, and they do whatever strikes the fancy. Obviously they see our world; they are part of it; but how it looks to them I can't guess.

And those with such powers as we had were greatly revered amongst our people, and sought after for advice and miracles and glimpses into the future, and occasionally for putting the spirits of the dead to rest.What I am saying is that we were perceived as good; and we had our place in the scheme of things.

There was also abundant evidence that what we called bad spirits envied us that we were fleshly and also spiritual-that we had the pleasures and powers of the physical while possessing spiritual minds. Very likely, this mixture of flesh and spirit in human beings makes all spirits curious; it is the source of our attraction for them; but it rankles the bad spirits; the bad spirits would know sensuous pleasure, it seems; yet they cannot. The good spirits did not evince such dissatisfaction.

It was an inherited thing in our family. It may be physical for it seemed to run in our family line through the women and to be coupled invariably with the physical attributes of green eyes and red hair. As all of you know-as you've come to learn in one way or another since you entered this house-my child, Jesse, was a witch. And in the Talamasca she used her powers often to comfort those who were plagued by spirits and ghosts.

Now, when I say that my sister and I were witches, I mean this: we inherited from our mother-as she had from her mother-the power to communicate with the spirits, to get them to do our bidding in small and significant ways. We could feel the presence of the spirits-which are in the main invisible to human eyes-and the spirits were drawn to us.

Whatever their material makeup is, they have no apparent biological needs, these entities. They do not age; they do not change. And the key to understanding their childish and whimsical behavior lies in this. They have no need to do anything; they drift about unaware of time, for there is no physical reason to care about it, and they do whatever strikes the fancy. Obviously they see our world; they are part of it; but how it looks to them I can't guess.

There was also abundant evidence that what we called bad spirits envied us that we were fleshly and also spiritual-that we had the pleasures and powers of the physical while possessing spiritual minds. Very likely, this mixture of flesh and spirit in human beings makes all spirits curious; it is the source of our attraction for them; but it rankles the bad spirits; the bad spirits would know sensuous pleasure, it seems; yet they cannot. The good spirits did not evince such dissatisfaction.

The spirits spoke to us only telepathically; as I have said, they were invisible; but their presence could be felt; they had distinct personalities, and our family of witches had over many generations given them various names.

But imagine now, how much fun it is for them to listen to prayers and try to answer them, to hang about altars and make thunder after sacrifices are offered up. When a clairvoyant calls upon the spirit of a dead ancestor to speak to his descendants, they are quite thrilled to start chattering away in pretense of being the dead ancestor, though of course they are not that person; and they will telepathically extract information from the brains of the descendants in order to delude them all the more.

We divided them as sorcerers have always done into the good and the evil; but there is no evidence that they themselves have a sense of right and wrong. The evil spirits were those who were openly hostile to human beings and who liked to play malicious tricks such as the throwing of stones, the making of wind, and other such pesty things. Those who possess humans are often 'evil' spirits; those who haunt houses and are called poltergeists fall into this category, too.

The good spirits could love, and wanted by and large to be loved as well. Seldom did they think up mischief on their own. They would answer questions about the future; they would tell us what was happening in other, remote places; and for very powerful witches such as my sister and me, for those whom the good spirits really loved, they would do their greatest and most taxing trick: they would make the rain.

Now, when I say that my sister and I were witches, I mean this: we inherited from our mother-as she had from her mother-the power to communicate with the spirits, to get them to do our bidding in small and significant ways. We could feel the presence of the spirits-which are in the main invisible to human eyes-and the spirits were drawn to us.

But imagine now, how much fun it is for them to listen to prayers and try to answer them, to hang about altars and make thunder after sacrifices are offered up. When a clairvoyant calls upon the spirit of a dead ancestor to speak to his descendants, they are quite thrilled to start chattering away in pretense of being the dead ancestor, though of course they are not that person; and they will telepathically extract information from the brains of the descendants in order to delude them all the more.

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