was twilight. Evening dark was fast approaching. Judas Iscariot felt
he was losing his mind. He was desperate. He was in despair. He was
slowly, and increasingly painfully, coming to the decision to kill
himself. To hang himself.
was sitting on a park bench. He stared blankly at everything around
him, seeing nothing. An apprentice clergywoman appeared, seemingly
mysteriously, and sat next to him, gingerly. She wore a black
headscarf, in deferential respect to him.
"Mister Iscariot?" Judas turned slowly, and looked at the
speaker. "I was there, sir. I know how to help you."
in a daze, "Nobody can help me. I betrayed a friend for money;
for thirty pieces of silver. The friend has been hanged by the
Governor. Nobody can help me.
asked them to hang me. They laughed at me. They said if I went away
and committed a real crime, they would do better than hang me. They
would crucify me. Death by crucifixion takes hours and hours. I wish
they would; among real criminals. Nobody can help me."
can help you, sir." Judas surveyed the clergywoman's
apprenticeship garb. "You are not fully holy."
Iscariot's observation. "Go to Holy Ground, Mister Iscariot. If
you are sincerely repentant, you will be triumphant."
Ground?" "Yes. We are all informed of Holy Ground from the
time we are children." "Holy Ground?"
Remember? God said to Moses, Draw not nigh hither. Put off thy shoes
from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is Holy
the Lord said unto the people, Take heed to yourselves that ye go not
up to Mount Sinai; nor touch the border of it. Whosoever toucheth the
Mount, which is Holy Ground, shall surely die."
his presence of mind a little, Judas whispers, mostly to himself,
"The Lord said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot,
for the place whereon thou standest, is Holy Ground.
long-deceased Moses and Elias on that high holy mountain Holy Ground
where the voice of God was heard out of a cloud."
Mister Iscariot. You remember your Mother's good teaching. What else,
sir? Go on."
looked intently inquiringly into the clergywoman's eyes, and spoke
slowly, brokenly, "On Holy Ground, Almighty Gods must forgive
sincere repentance. They have no choice." "Yes."
am sincerely sorry for betraying my friend. How will I make the Gods
believe my repentance is sincere, when I have my friend's blood on my
will be out of your hands, sir. On Holy Ground, the pain of sincere
confession of guilt turns sweat into great drops of cleansing blood
falling down to ground. Angels from heaven will appear, and 'gods
ascending out of the Earth' for you and everyone else to see your
do not deserve forgiveness. My crime was long in its deliberate
planning; it deserves the most agonizing death-by-crucifixion."
are right, Mister Iscariot, by saying your crime was long in its
deliberate planning, but not by your deliberate planning, sir; by the
deliberate planning of Almighty God, himself, hundreds and hundreds
of years ago. Mister Iscariot, by God's own prophecy, you were chosen
by God; and you had no say in the choosing.
as Moses had no say. Just as Jonah had no say. Just as that teenage
girl in Nazareth, had no say. Just as everybody who is born into this
so-evil-imperfect world, had no say in the choosing. Mister
Iscariot." There was a long pause. Judas closed his eyes in pain
of lethal guilt. The woman slowly looked around, hoping no stranger
would be curious about a woman and a man sitting on a park bench in
the evening; talking; nearly whispering.
it was out of my hands from the beginning, why do I suffer this pain
of guilt?" "Because, sir, as will be revealed to you on
Holy Ground, although you had no choice, your victim suffered, and
that suffering you must share, and work through in purifying living
truth that exists on Holy Ground, beyond even the ken of Almighty
long pause as Judas slowly looks about him, as if searching for a
presence. "You are a priest?" "Hoping to qualify some
day, sir." "Your life is in service of Almighty God."
"Yes." "Then, why do you want to help me find Holy
Ground that exists in defiance of Almighty Gods?"
is a long pause during which Judas does not take his eyes off the
clergywoman; and during which the clergywoman averts his eyes.
Eventually, she looks, in uncertainty, at Judas.
I believe your friend who has been crucified, is innocent of any
crime. Whenever I could, I was among those who listened to his
teachings. I witnessed some of his healings of the sick, and of the
maimed-from-birth. I was the woman who caused him to ask, 'Who
touched me?' At his crucifixion, I was among the 'women who were
there, beholding afar off.'
was fortunate he found Holy Ground, on which it was revealed to him
by Angels that his god was wrong to have committed him to such
unrighteous suffering. He was heard to have cried to himself, My god,
my god, why hast thou forsaken me?
other words, sir, Holy Ground sentience erased in him the shackles of
the unrighteousness of that messianic prophecy. His life-energy now
is happily free forever of all gods' shenanigans against us mortals."
a daze, mostly to himself, "My friend said he would return to
Iscariot, in many religions, holy individuals have promised to return
to help. None has ever kept that promise simply because after death
that happens not on Holy Ground, we return to the nothingness of dust
to which we were cursed by the god who made us of dust: 'Dust thou
art, and unto dust shalt thou return.' On Holy Ground our sincere
repentance cleanses us of that genetic dust, sir. Hence, your friend
will do better than that prophecy that predicted a Messiah will
return sometime in the future: 'Of that day and hour knoweth no man,
no, not the angels of heaven.'
after we serve a god's purpose, we are abandoned to a life of
insignificance until we die into nothingness, like Jonah." "Like
Samson." "Like King David." "Like John, the
Holy Ground, Mister Iscariot, that unrighteousness does not exist. If
you repent on Holy Ground this day, sir, you will join your friend
'this day in Paradise.'"
are not a full priest. How can you know that?" She moved closer
to Judas on the bench, and spoke at nearly a whisper. "You know
about 'The Index Librorum Prohibitorum,' Mister Iscariot?"
the time I was in High School. The list of books we are forbidden to
read." "Do you know anyone who has read any of those
books?" "No." "Now you do." "Who?"
looked intently at Judas, and cautiously, so that only Judas could
see, she slid a hand up closely against her garments and
pointed-placed an index finger on her chest.
Iscariot, as you are fully aware, women are not taught to read. I was
an only-child. My Father was a soldier; he died in a battle, serving
his Nation. He had taught my Mother to read. My Mother taught me.
Clergywomen are assigned menial duties. I volunteered to keep the
library archives clean. In secret, I have read and continue to read
books on that prohibited list."
got up from the bench and walked a few steps back and forth. Judas,
wide-eyed, kept his eyes on her. "Are you not in serious trouble
for reading those books?" The clergywoman spoke softly, as she
walked. "Yes. And we must not speak about how I manage to
secretly access those books. All you need to know, Mister Iscariot,
is that in 'The Index,' Holy Ground is explained as a provision made
available, by a Sentience more powerful and all-knowing than Almighty
Gods, to persons to free themselves from victimization by Almighty
do not know where to find Holy Ground." "This City was
built around Holy Ground, Mister Iscariot. On this Holy Ground, our
first godless primitive ancestors originated and celebrated their
annual Scapegoat festivals.
I will take you to our Holy Ground Garden of Gethsemane."
of the message
won't know where to send it.)
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