On the central stage, a pitiable drama is playing out.
Despite its contemptible inadequacies, it has cast a powerful spell over us all. This scene is wildly magnetic more for its repugnance than even its entertainment value.
The central players have become banal caricatures of human beings. In their obsessive hunger for power, money, status and unmitigated control of just about everything, they have given money and wealth a bad name. With their gilded mockery, these hard-hearted, stiff-minded thespians have cast before us the ultimate, inverted, false idol. It commands not our adoration, but our rabid contempt.
In our wide-eyed consternation, unable to come up with a better means of distinguishing ourselves from this shameless display, we have learned by its example to hate money and wealth and everyone who has them.
In the ultimate turn of false logic, we have assumed that the two bit hustlers up there on the main platform are worshiping money.
We have bought into the idea that money is the root of all evil and that a rich person cannot easily cross the threshold of heaven.
In our confusion, we keep drinking the bitter antidote for what we are convinced is the poison. We cast all our adoration on the noble underdog, the long suffering outsider, the desperately hungry, yet (apparently) soulful pied piper. Like bewitched children we follow him to the edge of our own destruction.
Careful now. One more step in that direction and the whole thing might just be over!
But it needn't be.
Just a moment ago, I found the courage to turn around!
Instead of worshiping in the East and casting all my attention into the face of the wind, I now find my gaze is held fast by the watery ways of the West. The wind is at my back. It is propelling me forward.
Ah, I see I have peaked your curiosity too.
Now you have also broken your perverse entanglement with the false narrative, if only for the briefest of moments.
Quick! Fix your gaze. Just ahead I see a bridge. Over there under the acorn tree! Rest your eyes on this emerging passageway.
Here, take my hand. No! Don't even chance a furtive backward glance. This moment is too fragile for that.
Can you hear the music drifting across the ravine? What a harmonious tune. Catchy too.
Oh look! There's a woman dancing. Golden snakes and silk chiffon! I love it.
Ooooh, see that man over there feasting on plump red grapes? Those look so good, don't they?!
Well who would have ever guessed it! There's a whole crowd over here softly gyrating to the sound of something akin to a love song. They are holding piles of gold in their hands. No one's ever going to believe any of this.
Oh my! They are singing love songs to their money. Just look how it grows.
Hey. Where did you go? Now there's a terrible, thick mist over everything. It's like walking through over-cooked beef stew. Yuck.
Don't you do it. Don't you listen to that voice I hear floating on the wind.
Later, he says! When you have some gold of your own, he says! Your clothes aren't nice enough. Your are sporting a very out of date coiffure! You've put on a few pounds, haven't you? Chiffon? You really think you can pull off chiffon? Ha!
He's not whispering now. He's shouting at the top of his lungs. You don't belong here! Oh that is a low blow. His best line so far: One whiff of that gold honey and you'll become just like us.
Oh drat. He's one of those malignant troupers from over there in the East. He wants to take control of our favorable winds.
Quick now. Answer me. What's next? How bad do you want to join in that nectarous scene we just witnessed?
That's what I thought. Pretty damn bad. Shut him down now and keep walking. Take my hand again. That's right. You can do it!
The mist is lifting now. There's an altar just ahead. Will you make the sacrifice?
Control! The price you pay is control. There's a bucket for your mind, one for your body, another for your emotions, and finally, your spirit. The choice is crystal clear! This is your new devotion or it isn't.
Just dip your fingers in. Can you feel it? That's your suffering draining away. That's your angry, antagonistic relationship with money leaving every nook and cranny of you.
Ah such sweet relief.
Now nod your head. Yes! The attendant's carrying all that anguish away. There's no more need for deprivation. As if there ever was!
Here come the man and the woman. One comes bearing silver and the other gold. This is the last portal. Let go of my hand now. This is yours to do.
Lavish them with love. Sing darling. Sing them a delicious serenade.
Oh look how the treasure grows.
I know. It's not just the money is it? It's your love soaked emotions. I feel it too.
My heart is just drenched in the sweetest kind of contentment.