|Works||Series 1-Quest To Be Whole||Album 4-Epiphany|
This album is an allegory on the life of the man seen in the Deep album. It ties the social context of the Predator album together with the personal context of the Deep album. Looking from a greater distance, we see the man in relation to those around him. This throws a light upon the social ramifications of the very internal experience seen in the Deep album. In other words, how his actions change because of his conversion. On another level, the album itself becomes the story the man tells his friends to explain the change within him.
Leaving behind his former life, in particular his old friends, is crucial. This is often the most difficult area a new Christian faces. People need to be part of a group, but a group going the wrong direction is worse than being alone because it is harder to both leave your friends and turn around than to simply turn around.
Being one of the "chosen few" means when you follow Jesus you are going counter to the accepted wisdom of the world, who will not take kindly to your rejecting their dream by choosing to follow Jesus, still less to your telling them God says they are going in the wrong direction. The few will hear the Word and turn around, but the mass will mock the way they mocked Noah until the day God shut the door of the Ark against them.
On a somewhat higher level, this album represents the group unity of the world. The Tower, the only thing humanity agrees upon, is a tomb. This makes Epiphany a counterpart to the final albums in the series, Lattice and One.
The contrast to Predator is that Epiphany is not talking about some ‘thing'; it is talking about me. It contrasts the Deep theme of light and expansive vision with that of the darkness and inward focus of the underground. Its contrast with Void is that it is a consequence of the Void response to evil.
Predator represents existential evil.
Deep is personal evil.
Void is the world's response to evil.
Epiphany is personal involvement with group evil.
On another level, the allegory is about things 'everyone' believes to in fact be the opposite.
One example is the worldview called evolution. Genetic change obeys entropy every bit as much as does thermodynamics. To make it simple, things run down, they do not wind themselves up. Everything decays: the Earth, the Sun, the Universe, and certainly the fleeting existence of life on this planet. Evolution is reality stood on its head, the way the Tower was actually a pit.
The driving force behind biological change is genetic degeneration. Species break apart. Species die out. Greenpeace notwithstanding, humanity is hardly the sole cause of this. All species are on the road to extinction. Survival of the fittest means insects, and eventually bacteria and other such simple life, and after that only single cell ocean plants, are fit to survive. Why? Complexity kills.
Compare two species, one which has a high rate of reproduction and the other a low rate. Which is better suited to survival? One which has a brief period of helpless childhood versus another with a long period? One where adults die after reproducing versus another where adults continue to live and consume resources long after they are no longer able to reproduce? One with a single cell versus another where thousands of cells must all work in near perfect synchronization? One small enough to have its energy needs met by the sunlight falling upon it versus one whose energy needs are so high as to need the energy falling on an area thousands of times its size? Complexity kills.
To speak of only a single factor related to survival, ascending the food chain decreases survivability because it increases dependency, and thus vulnerability. If you live off the sun, you depend on the sun. If you live on fish which depend on plankton which depend on plants which depend on the sun, you depend on fish and plankton and plants and the sun, and the relationships that join them. Since bacteria are more fit to survive than is a blue whale, what 'survival of the fittest' scenario, what 'force of evolution' leads bacteria to aspire to be blue whales? Complexity kills.
Consider mutation. On any level of organism complexity, the overwhelming majority of all mutations are detrimental. Add to this that the higher an organism stands on the scale of complexity the more likely it is that a mutation will reduce the organism's survival rate. Why? As a simple example, a bacteria is not subject to brain cancer because it has no brain. Complexity kills.
This situation is the same as we find in the universe itself. The universe is not 'evolving'. It began at a point of high energy, and has been running down ever since. All energy scattered motionless across the universe a fraction of a degree above absolute zero, a state called heat death, is what the universe can sustain. If it had ever been at that point it would not 'evolve' into stars. So too, if life was nothing but single cell ocean organisms, what force would cause it to 'evolve' into blue whales? Simply adding energy would not do it, since single cell organisms use energy more efficiently than do blue whales, showing the 'in a closed system' argument against entropy applying to evolution to be irrelevant. Survival would not do it, since single cell organisms are better fitted to survive than blue whales. Complexity kills.
What is the force that drives evolution? The truth is that this force is a myth we tell ourselves to try to explain why living things exist. Life, like the cosmos, began at a high level of complexity and is irresistibly running down to a lower and lower level. The believers in evolution pay homage to a force they can neither name nor measure. Believers in degeneration have a force they can both name and measure. Entropy.
Part of the process of decline is losing the ability to breed with all the members of ones species. This is the great trumpeted new species. But is speciation progress? Quite the opposite. This loss reduces the size of the gene pool for both groups. For evolution to make any sense, inbreeding would have to be genetically beneficial because a few million years of dividing and countless subdividing of the gene pool can hardly be called anything else.
The primary problem I have with evolution is interdependency. Call it the problem of the protoeye. What good is an eye that does not see? But is it reasonable to believe a working eye was caused by one sudden genetic mutation? If not, why would survival select for a trait that would only produce benefits a million years later? When you look at the complexity of a higher creature, at the vast web of interdependent functions that allow it to exist, it seems a stretch to think each side of all these relationships could arise from simultaneous separate mutations, given how rare it is that any particular genetic error (mutation) will prove beneficial. This simultaneous aspect also applies to interspecies relationships. What sort of organism would evolve to break down bones before any animal has evolved that has bones?
As far as the famous 'tale of the rocks', where lower layers show less complex creatures, do not forget that this is exactly the sequence Genesis describes. People love to say the Bible is unscientific, but on this point at least it is spot on. But since the people bashing the Bible have already concluded it has nothing to say, they are incapable of recognizing its value. For this type of thinking they expect me to respect their deep wisdom. It is possible I speak as a child, and fail to understand my questions have long ago been answered. As of yet, I have not found explanations to these issues.
The idol represented by the Tower is seen again in The Grove.
|Works||Series 1-Quest To Be Whole||Album 4-Epiphany|