1. From the beginning to the end is the arrow of time, its head all that will be, its shaft all that is, its tail all that was.
2. With the first span time created all the things that was, is, and will be; and this we call matter.
3. With the second span time created the void, and all the enormity thereof; and the void swallowed up all that was, is, and will be; and this we call space.
4. With the third span time created the great lights; but the void swallowed that up too, all save one; so that all their light is but a pittance against the darkness of the night sky; and these we call the stars.
5. And the one light not swallowed by the void illuminates the day, and this we call the sun.
6. With the fourth span time created the worlds, worlds of air, and water, and earth; and this world among them, made of air And water And earth, which we call the earth.
7. With the fifth span time planted the tree of life, the world tree, which grew from the water above the earth; and made Might its caretaker.
8. And Might tended to the tree of life, and guided its growth, and tended the well, and trimmed the sick, of the branches of the tree of life.
9. And along the arrow of time the tree of life grew from seed to sprout to sapling; and it grew branches beyond counting, its branches cover the world.
10. And at the ends of each living branch grows the fruit of the tree of life:
11. They are the leaves, that strive against each other to suck up the light; and the vines, that strive against each other to suck up the life.
12. For the tree of life is life itself, and life is strife.
13. And all the fruit of the tree of life bud, and grow, and ripe, or are eaten; and those that do not will surely fall to the ground when over ripe, and that we call death.
14. And under the care of Might, the branches of the tree of life fight a war as old as life itself.
15. And now the tree of life is old and vast, and filled with dead branches.
16. With the sixth span time created man and woman as a branch of the tree of life, an offshoot from another branch.
17. All of humanity is this branch, unique among all the branches as the branches are all unique.
18. This is our branch, as we are only here because the branch has grown this way.
19. This is our branch, for the living among us are the fruit growing upon it.
20. This is our branch, and so what happens with it matters to humanity.
21. This is a story of the sixth span.
22. It is not The story of the sixth span, for a span is long beyond memory, space vast beyond envisioning, things complex beyond conception.
23. The story of history cannot be fully told, for it is of stories beyond counting; and so this is not the story.
24. But it is A story.
1. The tree of life made man as a split from another branch of the tree of life.
2. And Might made man, as Might made the other branches, for Might is caretaker of the tree of life, and forever will be.
3. And life commanded man, live.
4. And so as to live, to suck up the air; and so man breathed.
5. And so as to live, to suck up the water; and so man drank.
6. And so as to live, to suck up not the light, but to suck up the life from the tree of life, for you are a vine and not a leaf; and so man ate.
7. And so as to live, to give up the air, and the water, and the earth, back to this world of air, and water, and earth; and so man exhaled, and excreted, and defecated.
8. And so as to live, to wake then sleep, to sleep then wake.
9. And so as to live, to keep in one piece, lest he ripen before his time and fall to the ground.
10. And Might commanded man do these things, for so did the other fruit of the branches from whence life and Might had made man.
11. And Might commanded man also:
12. Thou shalt guard thy self.
13. Thou shalt keep thy health.
14. Thou shalt meet thy needs.
15. Thou shalt fear thy fears.
16. Thou shalt seek thy wants.
17. Thou shalt think thy thoughts.
18. Thou shalt learn thy truths.
19. And these were writ in the scripture of life, that every man would read of it and copy it as long as he live; and that scripture would define him, and what he was, is, and will be.
20. Thus did life and Might make man that was man from man that was not man.
21. Thus began the sixth span.
1. And as man followed his commandments, he lived.
2. And as man lived, he grew.
3. And as man grew, he learned of the world, this world of air and water and earth.
4. And as man learned of the world, he learned of himself, and knew that he was.
5. And as man learned of himself, he began to learn what he was.
6. And as man learned of the world and of himself, he began to learn of his wants.
7. And as man learned of himself, he learned of others.
8. And as man learned of others, he learned that they learned of themselves also, and that they learned of others also.
9. And as man learned of the learning of others, he learned to feel for them.
10. And as man learned of the learning of others learning of others, he learned of language, that he might speak with them, and learn from their learning.
11. And as man learned of language, he began to learn of names.
12. And as man learned of names, he learned to find more names, and where there were none, to make new names.
13. And as man learned of names, he learned of concepts and ideas.
14. And as man learned of concepts and ideas, he began to believe; and he believed in truths and lies, for he knew not the difference.
15. And as man learned of beliefs, he learned of lies, and learned to question his beliefs.
16. And as man learned of questioning, and learned from it, he judged his beliefs as true or false, and accepted those he judged true, and rejected those he judged false.
17. And as man learned to judge, he learned to be wise in the ways of the world.
18. And as man learned of wisdom, he learned to seek out new truths, that he may benefit from the knowing thereof.
19. And as man learned of the benefits of learning, he learned, and learned, and learned, for he knew that with learning he could gain Might.
20. And as man learned of the benefits of learning, he learned to learn alongside others, that he could gain Might faster.
21. And as man learned of the benefits of learning, he learned to keep others from learning, that he might keep his Might for himself.
22. And as man learned of the benefits of keeping others from learning, he learned to weave lies, lies that claimed to be truth, lies that felt like truth, lies that hid the truth, lies that silenced those who would speak the truth, lies that raised up those who spoke untruth, and lies that made them want to go to others to spread lies still further; all so that none but he might have such Might.
1. And so man grew, and woman grew, and begat more of man and woman, and so the branch of man grew out, further from the branches it had once come from.
2. Of the branch that was man was born a man named Adam.
3. And in the way of man he learned, and learned of others.
4. But he did not do as the others, he did not find a woman meet for him.
5. And so his parents conceived again, and hence was Eve born.
6. And Eve was born of the same blood as he; and so bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh.
7. And they gave Eve to Adam, for him to tend to and guard.
8. And Adam cared for Eve, for he was by far the elder; and taught her, and led her; and she looked up to him, and did as he asked.
9. And Adam found that Eve was a woman meet for him, and knew his want for her.
10. And when Eve had yet to see ten summers, and not half his age, Adam took her aside and had her lay down for him, and she did as he asked.
11. And Adam went into her, as he had waited so long to do, and cared not for her thoughts.
12. And Eve knew not what to do, so terrific yet terrible was the consummation, and screamed in surprise.
13. And Adam hushed her, and told her not to worry, that all would be fine.
14. And Eve trusted him, and so lay there for him to finish.
15. Then when they returned the others asked, Where were thou?
16. And Eve told them of all that had happened.
17. And the others cared not, for they were disciples of Might, and they quoth, ‘thou shalt seek thy wants’, and said no more.
1. Now the world of the tree of life is dark as starless night, for it is the garden of Might, and world of ideals, and not the world of light and things that was, is, and will be.
2. And so man knew not of many things, he could only think on them, and wonder.
3. Then Thought lit up the garden of Might with light, that Adam and Eve may see of the tree.
4. Adam saw the tree of life, the tree of Might, so vibrant yet distinct against the bright sky.
5. And he saw the vines mating with themselves among all the branches of the tree of life.
6. And he said, Behold, all the vines of the tree of life do every day what I have waited to do this day, now I have finally given bud to the next generation of our branch.
7. Eve looked away from the light above, and saw that the light had lit up a reflection upon the waters that covered the ground, a reflection of the tree of life, that wavered upon the rippling waters.
8. For she saw the tree of knowledge of good and evil, a tree not of things that was, is, or will be, nor a tree of life; not the substance or strength of life, but the reflection of it.
9. And the tree of knowledge of good and evil bore its fruit not at the ends of the branches, but at the splits in the branches.
10. And Eve reached down to taste of the fruit of it that grew nearest her.
11. And her eyes were opened, and she knew of the good and evil of what Adam had done with her, and knew that Adam had done wrong.
12. For she had eaten of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, which was the body and domain of Right, and not of Might.
13. And she confronted Adam, and told him that he had done great wrong:
14. That he was wrong for taking advantage of her innocence.
15. That he was wrong for not asking for her approval.
16. That he was wrong for mating incestuously.
17. And Adam had not a clue what Eve meant with this talk of Right and wrong.
1. And Eve offered the fruit to Adam, and he tasted of it, and so also knew of his wrong.
2. But upon learning this he saw that this would stop him from doing as he pleased with her, and was contrary to all the mating he saw in the tree of life.
3. And so displeased, he spit out the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, even though he had already tasted of it.
4. And he commanded Eve, Thou shalt not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for it is not of Might, Might which made us who and what we are and Might which allows us to live.
5. It is the opposite of the tree of life, the opposite of the tree of Might.
6. It is the tree of weakness, for it limits what we can do.
7. It would have us not mate, yet if we did not mate, how would we have children, how will the branch of man extend, will not all man die?
8. And when Eve protested, Adam brought her before the others, and gave his reasons, and she gave hers.
9. But the others had not tasted of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, only tasted of the fruit of the tree of life, and saw not what Eve saw.
10. And when Eve said they had to first taste the fruit she tasted to understand, Adam warned them that on the day that man eatest of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, that day the branch of man will surely die.
11. And so the others refused to taste of the fruit, for they feared for their kind.
12. And they expelled Adam and Eve from their band, lest they make them taste of the fruit too, as Eve did unto Adam.
13. As the two left, Adam said to Eve, Behold the weakness of your Right, that it can do you little good; even now it has delivered you into my keeping, that I and my Might may do to you as I wish, and you and your Right shall suffer.
1. And so in their exile Adam and Eve left the land of their forefathers.
2. And as Eve was yet young and helpless, Adam cared for her, and taught her, and led her.
3. And as she had no choice, Eve did as she was told.
4. Many times Adam had her lay down for him, and she did so, for fear that Adam would abandon her to fend for her self.
5. And within her Right cried out against the injustice, but could do nothing, for Right was not of Might, and had no power.
6. And so she conceived, and bore the brothers Cain and Abel.
7. And Eve made sure to feed her children the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, that they would not go on to abuse their women as had Adam to Eve.
8. When Adam saw this, he commanded Eve to never speak of this again, on pain of punishment, for he had the Might to punish her, and so she obeyed.
9. And Adam taught his children that women were innocent and childish, as Eve was, so that they would not take her at her word.
10. And Adam taught them also of the rule of Might, and commanded they disregard the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, lest they perish, so that they would fear it.
11. And Adam called Eve’s sharing of the fruit, Sin, and equated it with evil and death and wrong, so that they would not be interested in Eve’s teachings, and would do the opposite.
12. And Adam taught them that they could sell women to suitors, and do whatever they wanted with their women, so that they would never even consider that women could refuse them.
13. And Adam told them that they could punish their women for displeasing them, because they can, so that they would not ever see woman as the equal of man.
14. When Cain and Abel came of age, they went to the other tribes and found wives among them.
15. And as Adam had taught them, they subjugated their women, and proclaimed that Might was Right, and that those who claimed otherwise Sinned in the saying of it.
16. And when Eve saw what had come of Adam’s teachings, and how they abused their wives, she shared the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil with the women also, but their husbands had taught them that this was Sin, and thus was of evil and death and wrong, and so they spit out the fruit that Eve fed them, and heard not of Right, and submitted to their husbands and never questioned them.
17. And when Eve saw this and saw it as injustice, she cried and cried and cried, but she could do no other thing, for she still had no Might, and Adam made sure it was so, and the men of the line of Adam made sure it was so for their women also.
18. And so it was that man reigned over woman, husband over wife, and would do so for as long as man had Might and woman did not.
-- by Yunzhong Hou