Wednesday, 15 March 2017

"God was rising"

"God was rising in the west, and this time the sun was down -"
-Poul Anderson, World Without Stars (New York, 1966), Chapter I, p. 5.

In this milieu, wherever it is, "God" is not the sun. We soon learn that it is our galaxy as seen in the night sky of a terrestroid planet of a red dwarf star in intergalactic space.

But in what sense can a heavenly body be "God"? Obviously the Yonderfolk or extragalactics do not utter that exact sound but we are to understand that they use a word that has at least the connotations of "God." They do not mean that "God" is an invisible, omnipresent spitit without body, parts or passions. They do mean that it, or rather "He," inspires awe and is adored/worshipped. We soon learn that a capitalized personal pronoun is applied to God.

A native, who is the One of his Pack, soon explains enough to confirm that the term "God" is appropriate:

"'God is the Begetter, the One of the World. All others are less than Him. We pray to God alone, as He has commanded...'" (Chapter VIII, p. 54).

Thus, God is a sole reigning god/deus/deva. A missionary for a Terrestrial monotheist faith would find that the groundwork had already been done but would want to differentiate the awesome personal power from the heavenly body.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Yes, I think the Packs of WORLD WITHOUT STARS would take a keen interest in the monotheistic religions of Earth, and some might even convert to one or another of them. Yes, any missionaries from Earth would try to dissuade the packs from personifying the galaxy as God.