Church Stuff-More or less

Does the church make sense or do we make it too hard for people to come in? I think yes and yes and the task then is to make it easier. Maybe for someone out there, this will be the case. I write as a Lutheran (or, perhaps a Lutherpalian) although I might seem out of the mainstream from time to time. That's okay, isn't it? Let's blog on.

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Location: Northport, Long Island, United States

Contrary to what Google will tell you, I have been blogging for several year, right here. Look for Churchstuff-moreorless. life was a hell of a lot easier when you could talk to someone to get help. Now, you can't do it on the telephone, you can't do it on the internet. Life was easier and made more sense because people actually cared. Now they will screw you as quickly as they will help you. Unfuck the world.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Two Champions

There were two kingdoms that shared a common border. In one country, they worshiped the sun, and in the other country, they worshiped the moon. Because of their religious differences, the two kingdoms went to war. Each gathered an army and the two armies met at the frontier. Row upon row of warriors, sunlight glinting on their war gear, faced each other across the no man’s land.

It was agreed that each army would send forward a champion to fight in single combat. The strongest, most skillful warrior in each army was selected. The two men advanced towards each other, grim faced, and with a sword in one hand and a shield in the other. On the chest of one was emblazoned an image of the sun; on the chest of the other, an image of the moon.

When they met, they fought like demons. They fought all morning long, as the sun rose higher in the sky. They fought through the midday heat, when the sun was at its zenith. They fought on and on as the sun descended towards the west. They were both such strong and skillful fighters that neither man could gain the advantage. They were still fighting, nose to nose, locked in each other’s arms, when at last the sun went down. But by then they were exhausted. They both collapsed on the ground, too feeble to even crawl back to the camps their respective armies had made for the night.

“I hate you!” groaned the Champion of the Sun.

“I hate you!” replied the Champion of the Moon.

“I have to kill you,” said the Champion of the Sun. “Back home I have a wife who loves me and a little boy who wants to be a warrior like me. I have to protect them from the likes of you.”

“I had a wife,” said the Champion of the Moon. “Your people killed her in the last war. That’s why I have to kill you.”

The moon rose. Presently, the Champion of the Sun asked the other man, “what was she like, your wife?”

“She was lovely. We had been sweethearts since we were children. I used to play with her in the woods near here.”

“Sounds like you had a happy childhood,” said the Champion of the Sun. “Not like mine. My father made us work all day in the fields and he’d beat us if we complained.”

“I am sorry to hear that,” said the Champion of the Moon.

And so they talked about their childhoods and the other things that they had done in their lives. They talked and talked as the moon rose higher in the sky. Still they talked as the moon descended towards the west. Only for the last hour or two of the night did they sleep. Side by side they lay, their swords and shields dumped beside them.

The sky turned grey, then pink in the east. Sounds and smells of breakfast making emanated from the two camps. The two champions were woken by the warmth of the sunshine on their faces. Wearily, painfully, they creaked to their feet. They looked into each other’s eyes. Then they embraced, and, leaving their swords and shields behind, walked back to their respective armies.
They could not fight each other any more, for you cannot fight someone when you know their story.
Adapted from a Serbian folktale


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