Revelations help us accept the things we need the most, expose the secrets we so desperately try to hide and illuminate the dangers all around us. But more than anything, revelations are windows into our true selves… of the good and the evil and those wavering somewhere in between. But they have the ultimate power to destroy all that we cherish most.
There was something strange in my sensations, something indescribably sweet. I felt younger, lighter, happier in body; within I was conscious of a heady recklessness, a current of disordered sensual images running like a millrace in my fancy, a solution of the bonds of obligation, an unknown but innocent freedom of the soul. I knew myself, at the first breath of this new life, to be more wicked, tenfold more wicked, sold a slave to my original evil and the thought, in that moment, braced and delighted me like wine.
Most attribute the domain of night to evil because they can’t see. People fear the shadows of the night because shadows represent the unknown, and the unknown is frightening. They assume evil lurks behind every shadow, in every corner not illuminated. But their fear of the unknown is often what really terrifies them. They find comfort seeing in the daylight for that reason, but the irony is they are often more blinded by their comfort than by the shadow of night. It’s a pity. If they could overcome their fear of the unknown they might realize that the unknown is not evil, it is simply an opportunity waiting to be explored. The night is no more a domain of evil than the daylight, both were created good, both have evil lurking in them. When you can overcome your fear, the night becomes a domain of beauty interlaced with danger, and that is exciting!
When gorillas smell danger, they run around and call out to the rest of the primates in the jungle to warn them something evil is coming. And when one of their own dies, they mourn for days while beating themselves up in sadness for failing to save that gorilla, even if the cause of death was natural. And when one colony is mourning, their chilling echoes migrate to other colonies — and those neighbors, even if they are territorial rivals, will also grieve with them. When faced with a common danger, rivals turn into allies. And when faced with death, the loss of just one gorilla becomes the loss of the entire jungle.
–Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem
Dedicated to the memory of Chris Welsh, a dear friend and brilliant thinker. Our jungle is filled with howls tonight as you embark on to that journey into the deep unknown. I hope you are delighted as you flow with the current of the universe into mysteries we do not yet understand. Love always.
In fairy tales, monsters exist to be a manifestation of something that we need to understand, not only a problem we need to overcome, but also they need to represent, much like angels represent the beautiful, pure, eternal side of the human spirit, monsters need to represent a more tangible, more mortal side of being human: aging, decay, darkness and so forth. And I believe that monsters originally, when we were cavemen and you know, sitting around a fire, we needed to explain the birth of the sun and the death of the moon and the phases of the moon and rain and thunder. And we invented creatures that made sense of the world: a serpent that ate the sun, a creature that ate the moon, a man in the moon living there, things like that. And as we became more and more sophisticated and created sort of a social structure, the real enigmas started not to be outside. The rain and the thunder were logical now. But the real enigmas became social. All those impulses that we were repressing: cannibalism, murder, these things needed an explanation. The sex drive, the need to hunt, the need to kill, these things then became personified in monsters. Werewolves, vampires, ogres, this and that. I feel that monsters are here in our world to help us understand it. They are an essential part of a fable.
“This here ol’ man jus’ lived a life an’ just died out of it. I don’ know whether he was good or bad, but that don’t matter much. He was alive, an’ that’s what matters. An’ now he’s dead, an’ that don’t matter. Heard a fella tell a poem one time, an’ he says All that lives is holy. Got to thinkin’, an’ purty soon it means more than the words says. An’ I wouldn’t pray for a ol’ fella that’s dead. He’s awright. He got a job to do, but it’s all laid out for im an’ there’s on’y one way to do it. But us, we got a job to do, an’ they’s a thousan’ ways, an’ we don’ know which one to take. An’ if I was to pray, it’d be for the folks that don’ know which way to turn. Grampa here, he got the easy straight. An’ now cover im up an let im get to his work.”
There is a little furnace within every heart that burns pain. It is formed by a masonry of scars as tick by tick the tireless mechanics of life strip the innocence bestowed upon us at birth. There are some in whom life builds the furnace small and controllable, a passionate heat to burn off the losses, the harsh words and petty disappointments, leaving us cleaner for it. There are others. There are those whose innocence is assaulted early and with such brutality, that it goes beyond all the boundaries of deities and angels to stray into the world of unfettered evil. They build their furnaces differently.
―Robert E. Dunn, The Red Highway
Darkness is usually portrayed as evil and light as good. What happens when light takes on ominous and threatening overtones?
This delightfully eerie and atmospheric short film, Light, is the work of Sunday Paper, the creative home of Cole Schreiber and David Parker. Their “goal is to create evocative, beautifully crafted images, showcasing stories that are thoughtful and compelling in any and all mediums.” The photography and cinematography of Light are gorgeous and the musical score is haunting. Sheer brilliance!
The unnerving and fascinating thing about this video is that it takes light, something we usually acknowledge as a friendly force in our lives, and gives it attributes that make us squirm. Peter Lauridsen’s evocative musical score illuminates and describes an ominous form of light: slippery and unpredictable. It drips and oozes. Lamps collude with one another, blanketing areas in radiance and pushing cars. If light chose to be evil, wouldn’t it be a more blinding and fearful enemy than darkness?
Humans have feared darkness much more than light because shadow hides so much from our eyes. Despite this, many religions speak of the most malevolent angels and demons as beings of light. Lamps are used to intimidate during interrogation, torture, and crowd control. Light pollution affects our health and robs us of our view of the stars. Poisonous ingredients are used to produce light bulbs. All of this shows us that light is not universally good, especially artificial light.
Are we too quick to let the luminous into our lives?
Directed by David Parker
Carlos Veron: Cinematographer
Kevin Zimmerman: Editor
Ritu Paramesh: Producer
The Mill NY
Colorist: Damien Van Der Cruyssen
Producer: Cat Gulacsy
3d Artist: Navdeep Singh, Thomas Bardwell, Joshua Merck
Producer: Marcus Lansdell
3d Artist: Aldrich Torres, Entae Kim, Yuheng Chiang,
Juan Cristobal Hernandez.
Compositing: David Parker, Cole Schreiber.
Original score: Peter Lauridsen @ Stimmung
Sound design and Mix: Lindsey Alvarez @ Lime studios
I see you go bare-shod. This is most likely extremely sensible. Shoes are no end of trouble for girls. . . . How many have danced to death in slippers of silk and glass and fur and wood? Too many to count—the graveyards, they are so full these days. You are very wise to let your soles become grubby with mud, to let them grow their own slippers of moss and clay and calluses. This is far preferable to shoes which may become wicked at any moment.
Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either — but right through every human heart — and through all human hearts. This line shifts. Inside us, it oscillates with the years. And even within hearts overwhelmed by evil, one small bridgehead of good is retained. And even in the best of all hearts, there remains … an unuprooted small corner of evil.