The letter killeth, the Spirit giveth Life and Truth - how often we have seen and even accepted this examplified in mere human experience - they that live by the letter, shall die by the letter - for the Spirit giveth Life: the flesh profitteth nothing. The Scriptures have both a literal and an actual meaning - as well as a spiritual interpretation. The actual, however, is a consequence of the spiritual: the better we understand Spirit and its manifestation, the better we can comprehend the actual and its ramifications - but, the literal destroys both: it erects its stony portrayal in the temple of storied worship, and would pervert all the inspired intent by accepting the errors, grammatical, linguistic, translatory, depictive, even cryptic, as fact rather than as enfoldment. By it men may kill and be killed - but not always, and not perpetually.
The now famous anecdote is told about some south-sea islanders who observed modern aiplanes flying overhead, and constructed their own imitations of wood, and pushed these off the high cliffs, thence watching them fall on the rocks below. (They presumed this was the normal outcome for all). Do men seek a garden of Eden because they have sometimes glimpsed that possibility recalled in that Scripture of GENESIS? Suppose one day one of those islanders sets out to find the land of those soaring sky-birds, and, crossing ocean tides and tempests arrives to find not one but a whole roost of those unflappable birds, taking-off and landing - then, making his way back to his island home, he explains that they must build much larger, and set them rolling fast before the launch-point at the promontory. Do men seek to convert the whole Earth into a garden of Eden, a mega-garden, spanning the globe? The islanders new-fangled contraptions roll fast and jump out from the cliff farther than ever before, but, alas, still fall upon the rocks below. (Their presumption held fast in their thought). Do men seek to build a garden of Eden, to catch the eye of some original builder and dweller? as the islanders sought to catch the eye of the airplane makers and flyers and guides. Then how long shall it be in generations before that mega-garden touchesthe true thought of God? how many generations shall it take before big-stick planes fly?! (When) ultimately the unreal literal must be given-up for the real spiritual and actual - the second Commandment prophesies four generations, and then forgiveness (in the fifth): a mere century. But is that forgiveness mere forgetfulness? Or shall it be Science? at long last!
COPYRIGHT: BASIC LIBRARY RULES: READ 'QUIETLY'