A Debate on the Ninth Commandment of the Laws of Proper Worship

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Megaleiotha Eirhno
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A Debate on the Ninth Commandment of the Laws of Proper Worship

Post by Megaleiotha Eirhno » Sat Aug 25, 2018 2:11 pm

As I prayed to the Scholar for the wisdom to lead the people of this faith, he descended from on high, and blessed me, saying,

I will show to you the words of my beloved ones, that you might learn.

The walls of one side of the temple began to shake, and a huge boulder there placed began to rock. At the blessing, the stone split into two, and then into four, and then into eight, and on, and on, until there was nothing but dust. Beyond the stone was a door, and I entered into it. What I found within I will now share with the congregation of the faithful.

The Ninth Book of Deliberation

These are the deliberations of the Priests and Revelators of the faith, in seeking to understand the words of the Most High Gods for the congregation of the faithful.

Behold, the holy words of the Nine Laws of Proper Worship on the Mount of Alekia:
Thou shalt honor the gods with thy face, cutting not the hair of thy face, in order that they might hear your prayers.

The Priest known as Mishena taught, saying, "If we intend for the gods to hear our prayers, we cannot shave our beards. This is the meaning that the law of proper worship clearly teaches."

But the Priest known as Gema taught, saying "Those who have no beards to shave are not required then to keep beards, as the gods would not ask of them that which they cannot give."

Mishena continued, saying, "Beards are necessary to the act of prayer, and thus, those without cannot pray. This is the clear intention of the law of proper worship."

Gema continued, saying, "We obey the will of the gods because they request that we not cut the hair of the face, not because beards assist in prayer. We obey only because the gods command, and it is their will."

Mishena questioned this teaching, saying, "Must we obey commands that the gods simply demand? Or are the demands of the gods laws which are simply true, independent of the gods?"

The Priest known as Jedu taught, saying, "And yet the laws teach,
Thou shalt honor the gods with thy head.
Is prayer not honoring the gods? If so, then, a man prays with his head, not his beard. Do leaves of the plant help its root reach out for water? No, rather, leaves and root make the one whole.

"As Lorquinia teaches us, Tehrior and Kelkion are part of one Whole, but Tehrior is not Kelkion. They are separate and distinct, which is why they make one. So it is with man. His mind and beard make one man, but they are separate. So a beard cannot be helpful in prayer, as the mind is helpful.

"Instead, cutting hair of the face is a symbol of vanity. A man cuts the hair of his face to appear more beautiful to world, despite the fact that it will grow back and he will have to cut it again. It is in vain and for vanity. Not everyone cutting hair does so as vain person, but this is used as an example of acts of such person. And what happens when we are vain? We start asking, we start praying, but not for honoring the deity, but for honoring of ourselves.

"Ask yourself this. Is Most High incapable of hearing? Can the Most High Gods be told to hear something louder and another thing more silently? No, they encompasses all and are One, as distinct aspects of the One, as the One has told us. But if someone prays for honor of himself, will they heed the request? No.

"That is why:
Thou shalt honor the gods with thy face, cutting not the hair of thy face, in order that they might hear your prayers.

"In plainer words, they convey this divine reason:
Honor the gods with yourself, not giving into vanity, so that your honoring might be heard."

Mishena rejected this teaching, saying, "Why then would the gods specify the beard as a separate entity from the head in the act of prayer? Surely if what Jedu says is true, the laws of proper worship would demand prayer as the instrument of the head. Prayer is not simply an act of the mind, but it is also an act of the soul; the head and the heart work together in bringing forth a declaration of prayers or the pronunciation of needs, and thus the two parts are unified, as Tehrior and Kelkion.

"But both Tehrior and Kelkion are necessary to bringing together the Twelve that are One. This is proved that in the beginning, among the Twelve were Prisni and Roax--yet these gods were killed for the war they waged on the other gods. The Twelve needed Tehrior and Kelkion in order to be one, as it is written in the The First War, the Twelve who are One became Ten in the Great War, became Twelve who are One again.

"Although you can remove your beard just as Prisni and Roax were removed, and thus it at first seems not to be a necessary feature of man, it must be grown back and replace that which came before, just as Tehrior and Kelkion. The beard may then be cut off completely only once, in keeping with this great replacement. But the beard, like Tehrior and Kelkion, is an essential part of the act of prayer. It unifies with the head and the heart to bring forth the declaration of the soul in the words of the mind as an extension of the mouth which brings these words to the ears of the gods.

"It is more than simply an admonition against vanity, for vanity may also be found in full beards that are left uncut. We must come to the gods with humility, yes, but that humility is found in obedience to the laws themselves, and not simply in a superfluous obedience to an unnecessary demand.

"The beard is a sacred and holy part of prayer."

Jedu replied, "The commandment clearly says: Do not cut hair.
But some will never grow a beard. Some will lose their hair naturally. Does this mean they are cut off from this grace?"

Mishena replied, "The grace bestowed by the gods is theirs to give. The gods do not give beards to those they do not anoint to pray."

Jedu replied, "A tail is not a part of the human; how then can be know that the beard is part of the soul?"

Mishena replied, "The proof is in the commandment itself. The gods would say the head had they meant the head--instead, they say the beard, as a symbol of something else."

Jedu replied, "They do not say the beard."

The Priest known as Abayon taught, saying, "The hair of the face cannot mean the beard.If the beard is a holy and sacred part of prayer, then women cannot pray. The Mother and the One hear the cries of all mothers ahead and before the cries of any other; yet these women cannot have a beard. Two of the sacred goddesses protect women and hear them above the cries of men. Then how can the command mean that you must not cut off your beard, if mothers are heard without a beard? Rather, perhaps, the beard allows men to be heard as women."

Gema taught, saying, "Even some of the Revelators cannot grow beards. Why then should the followers or other priests be held to a standard that not even all of the Revelators can fulfill?"

Mishena replied, "Perhaps prayer is not for the Revelators, as theirs is a higher calling. Perhaps prayer is designated only for the bearded, but it is not, in fact, the highest calling of a life."

Gema questioned him, saying, "Should they through whom the gods speak not speak with the gods?"

Abayon expanded, saying, "The Revelators must live a life steeped in prayer. How else could they hear the gods when they speak, if the Revelators do not first speak to the gods? Prayer is appointed for all people, regardless of status or gender. It is the devoting of an individual to the gods, in the hope of attaining their blessing. It is only through the sacrifice of prayer that we find ourselves inwardly turned to do the good in the world required of us by the Most High Gods."
Emperor Emeritus of Mare Nostrum

First Revelator of the Most High Gods

Father of Akillian, Edward, Paulus Gaius, and Rex Ciphra

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