Religion on Other Earth

Perhaps the most striking example of the extravagance of the Other Men was the part played by religion in their more advanced societies. Religion was a much greater power than on my own planet; and the religious teachings of the prophets of old were able to kindle even my alien and sluggish heart with fervor. Yet religion, as it occurred around me in contemporary society, was far from edifying.

I must begin by explaining that in the development of religion on the Other Earth gustatory sensation had played a very great part. Tribal gods had of course been endowed with the taste-characters most moving to the tribe's own members. Later, when monotheisms arose, descriptions of God's power, his wisdom, his justice, his benevolence, were accompanied by descriptions of his taste. In mystical literature God was often likened to an ancient and mellow wine; and some reports of religious experience suggested that this gustatory-ecstasy was in many ways akin to the reverent zest of our own wine-tasters, savoring some rare vintage.

Unfortunately, owing to the diversity of gustatory human types, there had seldom been any widespread agreement as to the taste of God. Religious wars had been waged to decide whether he was in the main sweet or salt, or whether his preponderant flavor was one of the many gustatory characters which my own race cannot conceive. Some teachers insisted that only the feet could taste him, others only the hands or the mouth, others that he could be experienced only in the subtle complex of gustatory flavors known as the immaculate union, which was a sensual, and mainly sexual, ecstasy induced by contemplation of intercourse with the deity.

Other teachers declared that, though God was indeed tasty, it was not through any bodily instrument but to the naked spirit that his essence was revealed; and that his was a flavor more subtle and delicious than the flavor of the beloved, since it included all that was most fragrant and spiritual in man, and infinitely more.

Some went so far as to declare that God should be thought of not as a person at all but as actually being this flavor. Bvalltu used to say, "Either God is the universe, or he is the flavor of creativity pervading all things."


Folksonomies: religion otherness alien other

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kindle:Company (0.814954 (negative:-0.279199)), monotheisms:Person (0.667919 (neutral:0.000000)), Bvalltu:Person (0.659360 (neutral:0.000000))

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Aroma compound (0.331138): dbpedia | freebase | yago

 Star Maker
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Stapledon, Olaf (1937), Star Maker, Retrieved on 2017-03-10
Folksonomies: speculation science fiction