You can tell when the holidays are over. The festivities end. The spare rooms are empty and quite. Everyone’s gone home to their far away places. The Christmas lights are back in the box. Most of the wrong-size clothing has been returned, and you have chemo tomorrow. That’s a definite period at the end of the holiday sentence.
I hope you’ll forgive me if I miss a couple days Un-Blogging. I’ll be right back.
In the meantime I have been thinking about what I call the Law of Witnesses. I came by this understanding when one of my sons brought home a novel and read it non-stop to the end. He seemed obsessed. He handed the books to his younger siblings and encouraged them to read it. They became hooked and fought for turns to read it.
Through all of this I had an uneasy feeling about the books. They seemed wrong to me. I had picked up the first book and read the first few chapters weeks ago – just being parental. They told an engaging story, but nothing to be concerned about. About the time he brought home the second one in the series I still couldn’t shake the feeling that something was wrong. They seemed to glow darkness. Yet, I had read enough to conclude they were harmless enough.
I finally picked up the first novel again and turned to the middle of the book. What I read was the most shocking and vile literature ever written. It was horrific, and embodied a full-on description of everything that evil people can do or inflict on men and women. I flipped further into the book, and it was even worse. Yet, it was strangely appealing. When reading them I felt (I can’t find the right word – perhaps titillated/intrigued/curious/stimulated) – even while feeling completely repelled.
I gathered up the books and after a discussion with my kids, we burned them together. As they turned to ash I felt relieved, and oddly disappointed and inexplicably sad.
I couldn’t sort out my duality of emotion. I decided to fast and pray to shake off the conflicted feelings. Usually I am very black and white. I hate telestial things, and couldn’t figure out where these feelings were coming from.
As I was praying I acquired a sudden understanding. That’s one of the ways I recognize revelation – it is a complete idea or understanding that bursts suddenly into my understanding.
I’ve never heard anyone describe the Law of Witnesses this way before or since. It was simply this, that there is a divine law which allows a spirit entity who inspires something upon this earth, whether it is a novel, music, movies, photographs, or any other thing, to have the right to bear witness of their own work to anyone who experiences it.
The reason this has to be is because God, through the Holy Ghost, inspires a lot of things – the scriptures for one, music, art and a million other things. This law gives Him the ability to send the Holy Ghost to bear witness to the inspiration that went into the creation. That way, when we read the scriptures, we feel the Holy Ghost – because the Holy Ghost inspired it. When we listen to Handel’s Messiah, we feel the same inspiration Handel felt, and often the same emotion.
The flip side of this law is that evil works the same way – thus keeping the “opposition in all things” clause of mortality in operation. When evil beings inspire an author to write a book such as the one my son brought home, that same evil being has the right to bear witness to his own work, and the reader feels some or all of the same emotion and inspiration the author felt when he wrote it. When I learned this, I immediately knew why writers write romance novels, and explicitly sexual things. They get a high which can be as great as the act they portray. Why? Because most people would never actually do the things they write about, but they can experience the same raunchy emotions of those who inspired it – with far less guilt or criminal liability.
Hence, the conflicted feelings I could not shake from that very darkly-inspired book. My soul, which loves light and truth, was repelled, and the darkness which I unwittingly allowed access to me temporarily, loved the darkness. The author obviously had strong emotions when writing it, and my son and myself both felt them.
The practical effect of this principle is why pornography is so deadly. It isn’t just naughty pictures. Pornography is willingly placing a pipeline from one’s soul into the darkness of hell. People get the high of gross things without actually participating in them. But, the price is almost as high. It destroys everyone who touches it, and it is addictive because the emotion and titillation is inspired of evil – but seems free of earthly consequences. Most people consider pornography a victimless little-white-sin.
This is the reason raunchy music destroys over time, and incites people to acts of violence or sexuality they might never consider otherwise, because they “feel” the emotion of the darkly inspired composers and complicit performers. It’s the reason violence on television or unsavory movies are destructive. It isn’t innocent. It isn’t just that we “watch” a few minutes of awfulness. The great harm is that we get sucked into the darkness that inspired the movie, and it is addictive and pushes us to experience more and more. If we let it sink its teeth into us, it eventually motivates to even darker things.
Evilly inspired things are destructive beyond belief, and we are largely ignorant of how dangerous these rather gray-appearing things really are, or why.
As Paul Harvey used to say, well, now you know the rest of the story.