By J. J. Dewey
“Do you believe in a creator?” said Iiiir.
Londi looked at Iiiir as if he had asked him if the world exists. “Yes,” said Londi. “Why yes. Of course. Don’t you?”
“I’ve been thinking,” said Iiiir. “You know not very many people in this world do think. That’s the trouble. Everyone clings to the belief of others. Children inherit the convictions of their fathers and their fathers from their fathers. It turns out that we all believe something some prehistoric man conceived eons ago. I’ve reasoned it out for myself and in answer to your question; I must give you a no. No, I don’t believe in a creator.”
Londi was pale upon hearing the words of Iiiir. “But you must believe in a creator. Surely, we would not exist now if there were none. The parts to our bodies just didn’t fall in place. Life just didn’t happen. Just because the wind blew at a certain time of day that is no cause for a hunk of earth to be sent into living motion.”
“Yes, yes, I know,” said Iiiir. “I’ve heard that same old hogwash from every believer around since I can remember, and for many years I nearly believed it. It was rammed down me to the extent that I had to. But now I’ve read a lot. I’ve studied a lot, and I can see how this belief in a creator is all just kind of a rope of support. Why there’s no evidence. None at all.”
“Aren’t we evidence enough, Iiiir?” said Londi. “Haven’t you ever looked at the intricate parts of the body? Don’t you think some intelligence had to make the first one of us and give him power to think and act on his own? I have two children. I am their father. I had a father. My father had a father, and so on up to the first, the father of us all. Who created him?”
Iiiir made a swoop at the universe with his opened hand. “All around us is the universe. It’s infinite, Londi. Infinite! Some fanatics have guessed that the chances are one in ten billion that we could have been created by chance. But do you realize how many ten billions there are in the universe, Londi? Do you? How many ten billions in infinity?”
Londi said nothing.
“An infinite number! That’s what,” said Iiiir. “That would mean there’s an infinite number of others just like us. There’s an infinite number of anything that has a numeral chance at all of being created.”
“I just can’t see myself as being fortunate enough to be one in ten billion. And I believe the chances to be much greater than that.”
“That’s the trouble with this mess we live in. The earth is filled with narrow-minded slobs. Everyone is too blind to step out and see themselves as they really are. But know I’ve done that, Londi. I can see. I was an idiot for believing such an incredible thing all of those years. Now I can think for myself clearly enough to look at both sides of the question, and mere common sense tells me there was no creator.”
“I guess I’m an idiot,” said Londi. “I believe now, and I guess I’ll always believe. I feel something inside telling me it’s true. Something that is beyond common sense, or science.”
“The trouble with you and all of the others,” said Iiiir “is that you’re ruled too much by your emotions. We shouldn’t even have emotions. Sometimes it makes common sense impossible. If there were a creator, I would curse him for giving us that fault. The belief is buried in you Londi. You’ve been hypnotized with the repetition of others throughout your lifetime. You need to wake up. I did, and I can see the world the way it really is.”
“I’ve studied both sides, too,” said Londi. “Sometimes I was tempted to believe as you. It’s true that there is no material evidence of a creator. None has been found. But in a way this makes a belief more worthwhile. I’m sorry Iiiir, but I must believe against your common sense. Believing is the first step. Doubting is the second. Confirmation is the third. You have experienced the first two, Iiiir, but I believe I have gone a step further.”
“Oh,” said Iiiir. “You believe your belief is confirmed. You haven’t yet confirmed your confirmation. Yes. I see.”
Londi gave Iiiir a look of pity.
“Londi,” said Iiiir”
“Yes,” said Londi.
“So you believe in a creator?”
“Yes, yes I do.”
“Yes. Quite sure.”
“And this creator. Don’t you think he would have had to have been much more complex than ourselves in order to get the show on the road?”
“Yes, I suppose.”
“How much more?”
“Quite a bit I would guess.”
“Who created the creator?”
“And who created him who created the creator?”
Londi said nothing.
“Don’t you see Londi? It’s so much easier to believe that we are the ones created by accident. Someone up the line had to be. What do you think the chances are of the wind lumping together a being intelligent enough to create us? It would indeed be more than ten billion. You must agree to that.”
“Iiiir,” said Londi. “I must go now. Please excuse me.” His eyes were almost moist, but they weren’t. They couldn’t be.
“You have to agree,” said Iiiir. “We are the ones created by chance. You can’t deny that.”
Londi was out the door and walking away.
“You agree with me, don’t you Londi? You know you do. You won’t give me the satisfaction of telling me so.”
Londi was walking away, silent.
“Londi!” Iiiir nearly shouted. “You’re afraid. Afraid. You fear your rope will break and you will have no belief to hold to. Admit you don’t believe. Admit it! Admit…”
Londi was gone.
Iiiir clung to the door viewing the lifeless earth. Dry dust was drawn to his face as he prayed for Londi to return and convince him he was wrong. He had won the argument he had started. He knew he had. He knew Londi knew he had. But somehow, he was not exultant. Somehow, he was not patting himself on the back. Somehow, he had talked himself out of his own belief.
Iiiir walked outside, laid himself on the fine dust, and tried to weep. He knew he couldn’t but he tried. He tried as hard as the circuitry within him would allow. In fact he tried so hard he upset the intricate mechanisms out of which he was composed to the extent he felt ill. He undid the metal door on his chest and started readjusting the circuits and components within him.
A creator, he thought, as he was tinkering. It’s impossible. Sure I would like to believe in one, but the legend which has been passed down through the ages that he was made of flesh and bones is just too incredible. Legend also says that he had a thing called a woman and together they produced young. Everyone knows the only way to recreate is with one’s own two hands, the way he made his children.
If there was only some evidence that creatures of flesh and blood and bones once resided here. That there were trees and flowers and birds and bees, and many other things of beauty of which legend claims to have reproduced by their own substance. If there were only some evidence of any of these things then maybe he could believe. But it is as the scientists say. It would take a billion years of research to even create a cell of the fabled being. If one made of flesh did exist then he would have had to have been created by a power superior to any we can comprehend. That is of course, impossible: therefore, a being of flesh is impossible. There is no creator.
Iiiir felt alone in the universe.
Posted Sept 22, 2007, Written in 1961.
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