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We Still Ponder

“If there is anything I have learned in my travels across the Planes, it is that many things may change the nature of a man. Whether regret, or love, or revenge or fear – whatever you believe can change the nature of a man, can. I’ve seen belief move cities, make men stave off death, and turn an evil hag’s heart half-circle. This entire Fortress has been constructed from belief. Belief damned a woman, whose heart clung to the hope that another loved her when he did not. Once, it made a man seek immortality and achieve it. And it has made a posturing spirit think it is something more than a part of me.” – The Nameless One, Planescape: Torment (1999)

I don’t necessarily know it is true that belief is the answer.  I think I would like to believe such a thing – but I fear it cannot.  And yet, we live in a world where the dominant religion of the world preaches salvation through redemption – through acceptance and belief in a thing beyond oneself.  Where part of the twelve steps isbelief.  Where faith has moved mountains – and, equally, has killed untold millions.

Perhaps belief cannot change the nature of a man – but it can make us better than our nature.  And I think I have to believe that.  Because then there is nothing.

All things, whether structure or flesh — their existence is defined by their knowing of themselves.” – Dak’kon, Planescape: Torment (1999)

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