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Ch 15

The First Decent of Beelzebub Upon the Planet Earth
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“Upon that planet Earth,” Beelzebub began to relate, “I
descended for the first time on account of a young being
of our tribe who had had the misfortune to become
deeply involved with a three-brained being there, as a consequence
of which he had got himself mixed up in a very stupid affair.
“There once came to my house on the planet Mars a
number of beings of our tribe, also dwelling there on Mars,
with the following request:
“They told me that one of their young kinsmen,
350 Martian years before, had migrated to exist on
the planet Earth, and that a very disagreeable incident
for all of us, his kinsmen, had recently occurred to him there.
“They told me further:
“‘We, his kinsmen, both those existing there on the
planet Earth and those existing here on the planet Mars, intended
at first to deal with the unpleasant incident ourselves,
with our own resources. But notwithstanding all our
efforts and the measures we have adopted we have been unable
so far to accomplish anything.
“‘And being now finally convinced that we are unable to
settle this unpleasant affair by ourselves independently,
we venture to trouble you, your Right Reverence, and
urgently beseech you to be so kind as not to withhold from
us your wise advice how we may find a way out of our unhappy
situation.’
“They told me further in detail in what the misfortune
which had befallen them consisted.
“From all they told me I saw that the incident was disagreeable
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not only for this young being’s kinsmen, but that it might also
prove disagreeable for the beings of all our tribe.
“So I could not help deciding at once to undertake to
help them to settle this difficulty of theirs.
“At first I tried to help them while remaining on
the planet Mars, but when I became certain that it
would be impossible to do anything effective from the
planet Mars, I decided to descend to the planet Earth and
there, on the spot, to find some way out. The next day after
this decision of mine, I took with me everything necessary
which I had at hand and flew there on the ship Occasion.
“I may remind you that the ship Occasion was the ship
on which all the beings of our tribe were transported to
that solar system and, as I have already told you, it was
left there for the use of the beings of our tribe for the purpose
of interplanetary communication.
“The permanent port of this ship was on the planet
Mars; and its supreme direction had been given me from Above.
“Thus it was on this same ship Occasion that I made my
first descent to the planet Earth.
“Our ship landed on this first visit of mine, on the
shores of just that continent which during the second catastrophe
to this planet, disappeared entirely from its surface.
“This continent was called ‘Atlantis’ and most of the
three-brained beings, and likewise most of the beings of
our tribe, then existed only upon it.
“Having descended, I went straight from the ship Occasion
to the city named ‘Samlios,’ situated on the said
continent, where that unfortunate being of our tribe, who
was the cause of this descent of mine, had the place of his
existence.
“The city ‘Samlios’ was then a very large city, and was
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the capital of the largest community then on the planet Earth.
“In this same city the head of this large community existed who was
called ‘King Appolis.’
“And it was with just this same King Appolis that our
young, inexperienced countryman had become involved.
“And it was in this city of ‘Samlios’ itself that I learned
all the details of this affair.
“I learned, namely, that before this incident our unfortunate
countryman had for some reason been on friendly
terms with this King Appolis, and was often at his house.
“As it transpired, our young countryman once, in the
course of conversation during a visit to the house of King
Appolis, made a ‘wager’ which was just the cause of all
that followed.
“You must first of all know that both the community of
which King Appolis was the head and the city of Samlios
where he existed were at that period the greatest and richest
of all the communities and cities then existing on the Earth.
“For the upkeep of all this wealth and grandeur King
Appolis certainly needed both a great deal of what is called
’money’ and a great deal of labor from the ordinary beings
of that community.
“It is necessary to premise just here that at the period
of my first descent in person onto this planet, the organ
Kundabuffer was no longer in the three-brained beings
who interest you.
“And it was only in some of the three-brained beings
there that various consequences of the properties of that
for them maleficent organ had already begun to be crystallized.
“In the period to which this tale of mine refers, one of
the consequences of the properties of this organ which
had already become thoroughly crystallized in a number
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of beings
there was that consequence of the property
which, while the organ Kundabuffer itself was still
functioning in them, had enabled them very easily and
without any ‘remorse-of-conscience’ not to carry out
voluntarily any duties taken upon themselves or given
them by a superior. But every duty they fulfilled was fulfilled
only from the fear and apprehension of ‘threats’ and ‘
’menaces’ from outside.
“It was in just this same consequence of this property
already thoroughly crystallized in some beings of that period
there, that the cause of this whole incident lay.
“And so, my boy, this is how it was. King Appolis,
who had been extremely conscientious in respect of the
duties he had taken upon himself for the maintenance of
the greatness of the community entrusted to him, had
spared neither his own labor nor wealth, and at the same
time he demanded the same from all the beings of his community.
“But, as I have already said, the mentioned consequences
of the organ Kundabuffer having by that time
been thoroughly crystallized in certain of his subjects, he
had to employ every possible kind of ‘threat’ and ‘menace’
in order to extract from everybody all that was required
for the greatness of the community entrusted to him.
“His methods were so varied and at the same time so
reasonable that even those of his ‘subjects-beings’ in
whom the said consequences had already been crystallized
could not help respecting him, although they added to
his name, of course behind his back, the nickname ‘Archcunning.’
“And so, my boy, these means by which King Appolis
then obtained what was necessary from his subjects for the
maintenance of the greatness of the community entrusted
to him seemed to our young countryman, for some reason
or other, unjust, and, as it was said, he often became
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very indignant
and restless whenever he happened to hear
of some new device of King Appolis for getting what was necessary.
“And once, while talking with the King himself, our
naive young countryman could not restrain himself, but
expressed to his face his indignation and his views of this
’unconscionable’ conduct of King Appolis towards his subjects.
“Not only did King Appolis not fly into a temper, as
usually happens on the planet Earth when somebody
pokes his nose where he has no business, nor did he pitch
him out by the scruff of his neck, but he even talked it
over with him and discussed the reasons for his ‘severity.’
“They talked a great deal and the result of the whole of
their conversation was precisely a ‘wager,’ that is to say
they made an agreement and set it down on paper, and
each of them signed it with his own blood.
“Among other things there was included in this agreement
that for the obtaining from his subjects of all that
was necessary King Appolis should be obliged to employ
thereafter only those measures and means which should
be indicated by our countryman.
“And in the event that all his subjects should fail to
contribute all that which according to custom was required,
then our countryman would become responsible
for everything, and he pledged himself to procure for the
treasury of King Appolis as much as was necessary for the
maintenance and further aggrandizement of the capital
and of the whole community.
“And so, my boy, King Appolis did indeed, from the
very next day, fulfill very honorably the obligation which
according to the agreement he had assumed; and he conducted
the whole government of the country exactly according
to the indications of our young countryman. The
results of a government of this kind, however, very soon
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proved
to be quite the opposite of those expected by our simpleton.
“The subjects of that community—principally, of
course, those in whom the said consequences of the properties of
the organ Kundabuffer had already been crystallized—
not only ceased to pay into King Appolis’ treasury
what was required, but they even began gradually snatching
back what had been put in before.
“As our countryman had undertaken to contribute
what was needed and, furthermore, had signed his undertaking
with his blood—and you know, don’t you, what
the voluntary undertaking of an obligation, especially
when signed with his blood, means to one of our tribe—
he had of course soon to begin making up to the treasury
all that was short.
“He first put in everything he had himself, and afterwards
everything he could get from his nearests, dwelling
also there on the planet Earth. And when he had drained
dry his nearests there, he addressed himself for assistance
to his nearests dwelling on the planet Mars.
“But soon on the planet Mars also everything ran dry
and still the treasury of the city of Samlios demanded more
and again more; nor was the end of its needs in sight.
“It was just then that all the kinsmen of this countryman
of ours became alarmed and thereupon they decided
to address themselves to me with the request to help them
out of their plight.
“So, my boy, when we arrived in the said city I was met
by all the beings of our tribe, both old and young, who
had remained on that planet.
“In the evening of the same day a general meeting was
called to confer together to find some way out of the situation
that had arisen.
“To this conference of ours there was also invited King
Appolis himself with whom our elder countrymen had
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already
previously had many talks on this matter with this
aim in view.
“At this first general conference of ours, King Appolis,
addressing himself to all, said as follows:
‘“Impartial friends! “‘I personally am deeply sorry for what has
occurred and what has brought about so many troubles for
those assembled here; and I am distressed in all my being that it
is beyond my power to extricate you from your prospective difficulties.
“‘You must know, indeed,’ King Appolis continued,
’that the machinery of the government of my community
which has been wound up and organized during many
centuries, is at the present time already radically changed;
and to revert to the old order is already impossible without
serious consequences, namely, without those consequences
which must doubtless evoke the indignation of
the majority of my subjects. The present situation is such
that I alone am not able to abolish what has been created
without provoking the mentioned serious consequences,
and I therefore beg you all in the name of Justice to help
me to deal with it.
‘“Still further,’ he then added, ‘I bitterly reproach myself
in the presence of you all, because I also am greatly to
blame for all these misfortunes.
“‘And I am to blame because I ought to have foreseen
what has occurred, since I have existed in these conditions
longer than my opponent and your kinsman, namely, he
with whom I made the agreement known to you.
“‘To tell the truth it was unpardonable of me to risk entering
into such conditions with a being who, although he
may be of much higher Reason than I, is, nevertheless,
not so practiced in such affairs as I am.
‘“Once more I beg all of you, and your Right Reverence
in particular, to forgive me and to help me out of this sad
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plight, and enable me to find some issue from the situation
that has been created.
‘“With things as they now are, I can at present do only
what you will indicate.’
“After King Appolis had left, we decided the same
evening to select from among ourselves several experienced
elderly beings who should weigh together, that
same night, all the data and draw up a rough plan for further
action.
“The rest of us then departed on the understanding
that we should assemble the ensuing evening at the same
place; but to this second conference of ours King Appolis
was not invited.
“When we assembled the next day, one of the elder beings,
elected the night before, first reported as follows:
“‘We pondered and deliberated the whole night upon
all the details of this lamentable event, and as a result we
have unanimously come to the conclusion first of all that
there is no way out but to revert to the former conditions
of government.
‘“Further, we all, and also unanimously, agree that to return
to the former order of government must indeed inevitably
provoke a revolt of the citizens of the community,
and, of course, that there will certainly follow all those consequences
of revolt which have already become inevitable in such
circumstances during recent times on Earth.
“‘And of course, as has also become usual here, many of
those so-called “power-possessing” beings of this community
will suffer terribly, even possibly to the degree of their
complete destruction; and above all, it seemed impossible
that King Appolis could escape such a fate.
“‘Thereafter we deliberated in order, if possible, to devise
some means of diverting the said unhappy consequences
at least from King Appolis himself.
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‘“And we had every wish to devise such a means because
at our general conference yesterday evening King Appolis
himself was very frank and friendly towards us, and we
should all be extremely sorry if he himself should suffer.
“‘During our further prolonged deliberations we came
to the conclusion that it would be possible to divert the
blow from King Appolis only if during the said revolt the
exhibition of the fury of the rebellious beings of this community
was directed not against the King himself but
against those around him, that is, those who are there
called his “administration.”
“‘But then the question arose among us, would those
near the King be willing to take upon themselves the consequences
of all this?
“And we came to the categorical conclusion that they
certainly would not agree, because they would assuredly
consider that the King himself had been alone to blame
for it all, and that therefore he himself should pay for it.
“‘Having come to all these aforesaid conclusions we finally
also unanimously decided as follows:
“‘In order at least to save King Appolis from what is inevitably
expected, we must with the consent of the King
himself replace all the beings in this community who now
hold responsible posts, by beings of our tribe, and each of
these latter, during the climax of this “psychosis” of the
masses, must take upon himself a share of the consequences
anticipated.’
“When this elected being of ours had finished his report
our opinion was quickly formed, and a unanimous
resolution was carried to do just as the elder beings of our
tribe had advised.
“And thereupon we first sent one of our elder beings to
King Appolis to put our plan before him, to which the
latter agreed, once more repeating his promise, namely,
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that he would do everything according to our directions.
“We then decided to delay no longer and from the following
day to begin to replace all the officials by our own.
“But after two days it turned out that there were not
sufficient beings of our tribe dwelling on the planet Earth
to replace all the officials of that community; and we
therefore immediately sent the Occasion back to the planet
Mars for our beings there.
“And meanwhile King Appolis guided by two of our elder
beings, began under different pretexts replacing various
officials by our beings, at first in the capital of Samlios
itself.
“And when several days later our ship Occasion arrived
from the planet Mars with beings of our tribe, similar replacements
were made in the provinces also, and soon
everywhere in that community what are called the responsible
posts were filled by the beings of our tribe.
“And when all had been changed in this way, King Appolis,
always under the guidance of these elder beings of
ours, began the restoration of the former code of regulations
for the administration of the community.
“Almost from the very first days of the restoration of
the old code, the effects upon the general psyche of the
beings of that community in whom the consequences of
the mentioned property of the maleficent organ Kundabuffer
had already been thoroughly crystallized began, as
it was expected, to manifest themselves.
“Thus the expected discontent grew thereupon from
day to day, until one day, not long after, there occurred
just that which has ever since been definitely proper to be
present in the presence of the three-brained beings there
of all ensuing periods, and that is, to produce from time
to time the process which they themselves nowadays call
’revolution.’
“And during their revolution of that time, as it has also
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become proper there to these three-brained phenomena of our
Great Universe, they destroyed a great deal of the
property which they had accumulated during centuries,
much of what is called the ‘knowledge’ which they had attained
during centuries also was destroyed and lost forever,
and the existence of those other beings similar to
themselves who had already chanced upon the means of
freeing themselves from the consequences of the proper
ties of the organ Kundabuffer were also destroyed.
“It is extremely interesting to notice here one exceedingly
astonishing and incomprehensible fact.
“And that is that during their later revolutions of this
kind, almost all the three-brained beings there or at least
the overwhelming majority who begin to fall into such a
’psychosis,’ always destroy for some reason or other the
existence of just such other beings like themselves, as
have, for some reason or other, chanced to find themselves
more or less on the track of the means of becoming free
from the crystallization in themselves of the consequences
of the properties of that maleficent organ Kundabuffer
which unfortunately their ancestors possessed.
“So, my boy, while the process of this revolution of
theirs was running its course, King Appolis himself existed
in one of his suburban palaces of the city of Samlios.
“Nobody laid a finger on him, because our beings had
arranged by their propaganda that the whole blame should
be placed not upon King Appolis but upon those surrounding
him, that is, as they are called, his administration.
“Moreover, the beings who had fallen into the said psychosis
even ‘suffered grief and really pitied their king,
saying that it was because their ‘poor King’ had been surrounded
by such unconscionable and ungrateful subordinates
that these undesirable revolutions had occurred.
“And when the revolutionary psychosis had quite died
down, King Appolis returned to the city of Samlios and
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again
with the help of our elder beings, gradually began
replacing our countrymen either by those of his old subordinates
who were still alive, or by selecting absolutely
new ones from among his other subjects.
“And when the earlier policy of King Appolis towards
his subjects had been re-established, then the citizens of
this community resumed filling the treasury with money
as usual and carrying out the directions of their King, and
the affairs of the community settled again into the former
already established tempo.
“As for our naive, unfortunate countryman who was
the cause of it all, it was so painful to him that he would
no longer remain upon that planet that had proved so disastrous
for him, but he returned with us to the planet Mars.
“And later on he became there an even excellent bailiff
for all the beings of our tribe.”
Subpages (1): Ch 16
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