Sorat and the Modern Day Evil
"Sorat's evil will be spread by his infernal army of soulless followers, willing to give their lives for his pleasure in subjecting mankind to horror of the ultimate magnitude."
The above mentioned quote summarizes one of the main themes in Hearne's political thriller, "Hulagu's Web". The book suggests that much of the horror, destruction and mayhem that happen in the contemporary world are explained by the endeavors of Sorat, Lucifer's terrifying accomplice. It is said that Sorat incarnates every 666 years. 1998 would therefore be the year of his last manifestation. Coincidently, it is the same year that Usama Bin Ladin and his associates publicly declared their Jihad against the West with blatant orders such as "We - with Allah's help - call on every Muslim who believes in Allah and wishes to be rewarded to comply with Allah's order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it."
In his "Book of Revelation and the Work of the Priest", Rudolf Steiner describes Abaddon's attack on humanity. Abaddon (translated 'destroyer') is a demonic being born out of the abyss to lead an army of locusts with human-like faces. Rudolf Steiner explains the occult significance of this picture by suggesting that Abaddon's army consists of human beings who have been completely deprived of their ego. Sorat can rule on Earth by populating the empty shells of such people with the spirits that serve him. This infernal army would subject mankind to trials compared to which all the horrors of the twentieth century would pale. Coincidently again, Abaddon is referred to in Revelation 9-11, the same date that is now synonymous with the destruction of the twin towers and the attack on the pentagon.
Sorat is described as the strongest power against good. To accomplish his desire of destroying the earth, Sorat would manifest his evil in the social evolution. The wars and mass murders of our time are evidence of his corruption.
The fanatism and the everyday hatred of man against man are evils often disguised as religious dedication and nationalism. Sorat would bend people to his will by using the influence of leaders, be them political or religious. Sorat's alleged power lies in the ability to make followers believe that what they do for their fanatic leaders is right. As David J. Hearne says "the goal of this demon is to strip humans of their souls, egos and all goodness." Sorat could make horrible acts virtually impossible to eradicate once people become unable to recognize actions as evil.
The video of a hostage being beheaded in Iraq is an example of the horror mankind is subject to. It shows how much influence such a leader can have over others. He would stay back from his disciples, as he directs them to behead the hostage. Whenever the men holding the prisoner looked uncertain, the leader would convince them that what they were doing was the just thing. The scene appears to be a struggle between the leader (persuading) and the followers (resisting). The film shows how the power of evil can pervert people's senses to such a degree that destruction and horror replace the goodness and compassion in their souls.
The seductive powers of darkness act by using people's vulnerability and weaknesses against them. Terrorists claim their actions are for their love of God. Most of them believe that what they are doing is right. Someone who they see as a prophet or a messenger leads them to believe that they act in God's will. This messenger is trusted and considered more important than their own lives. Sorat would exploit these people to "give their lives for his pleasure in subjecting mankind to horror of the ultimate magnitude," as mentioned in Hulagu's Web.
It is difficult to understand why well-intentioned, logically thinking people fall into such traps. How can one induce another to become a suicide bomber willing to die for some obscure cause and kill other innocent people? How can the human mind become so clouded and susceptible to such evil and debasing acts? The answer lies in the fact that many people need something or someone to believe in. Sorat and his progeny would use this weakness to lead those susceptible to their influence. The reasons for their acts are masked, people follow because they need to believe and fail to ask themselves a rational explanation for what they are made to do. Nevertheless, if people saw the true intentions behind these schemes they would not follow. Evil exists as long it disguises itself.
Sorat could only maintain his power by distorting the way people perceive what is good. He would reduce each individual to his level - an entity without soul or conscious. His ultimate objective is to alter the human existence by spreading destruction and misery. Eradicating mercy, benevolence, compassion and humanity (most needed qualities that Christ himself advocated) is the only way Sorat can achieve his goals.
Becherete Adrian (is currently studying management marketing...) believes in the unlimited potential of the human mind and that constant evolution is impossible without striving to understand reality and distinguishing between the meanings of good and evil.
Fox 2000 has acquired the best-selling novel "Where the Crawdads Sing" and has tapped Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine to produce a feature film adaptation.
Witherspoon's involvement is not a great surprise. The Oscar winner has been a champion of the book, selecting it for inclusion in her Reese's Book Club.
An ongoing crisis in the Brazilian publishing market "that combined steady declines in the price of books with rising inflation" is raising concerns about the future of the book trade in the country, the Guardian reported. Book chain Saraiva, which had announced the closure of 20 stores in October, said late last month that it was filing for bankruptcy protection. Rival chain Cultura has also filed a reorganization plan to avoid bankruptcy. Brazil is in the midst of its worst recession in decades, and the recent election of far-right populist Jair Bolsonaro as the country's next president is "sending ripples of fear through the country's cultural community."
Daniel T. Willingham, a psychologist at the University of Virginia, compares audio books to print books and concludes that each is best suited to different purposes, and neither is superior:
... listening to a book club selection is not cheating. It's not even cheating to listen while you're at your child's soccer game (at least not as far as the book is concerned). You'll just get different things out of the experience. And different books invite different ways that you want to read them: As the audio format grows more popular, authors are writing more works specifically meant to be heard.
Our richest experiences will come not from treating print and audio interchangeably, but from understanding the differences between them and figuring out how to use them to our advantage - all in the service of hearing what writers are actually trying to tell us.
The UK publishing trade magazine, The Bookseller reports on authors' concerns about the effects of Brexit on the UK publishing industry:
Novelist Joanna Trollope has warned that Theresa May's government will "fatally undermine the whole UK publishing industry" if it fails to protect in law the UK position on exhaustion rights ahead of a major Brexit vote next week.
Trollope joined fellow authors Linda Grant and Joanne Harris to urge the government to ensure the UK's reputation as a world leader in culture and creativity is preserved after Brexit.
The authors were speaking out in support of calls from the Society of Authors (SoA), published in a new briefing, that politicians must protect free movement, copyright and trade while warning the sector is "not to be used as a bargaining chip in future negotiations"...
The Strand Bookstore in New York City is asking its many customers to attend a public hearing on Tuesday morning morning to help the store "make a case against landmark status" for its store at 826-828 Broadway. The bookstore is concerned that, if the building is given landmark status, "for every repair and every upgrade, the Strand would have to go through the slow bureaucracy of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, which adds to the expenses to keep the Strand alive.... The Strand currently runs on thin margins as a bookseller and retailer in New York City, fighting to survive in the era of Amazon. We have over 230 employees--most whom are unionized--and unlike large online retailers (like Amazon), have never asked or received tax breaks or other economic assistance to insure business profitability."
Ironically, it seems that the move to give the building landmark status is in response to the many new tech hubs that are being built in the area. And so, "in a trade-off, the Strand and a few other buildings along Broadway are now being calendared for landmarking."
The Literary Review has announced an all-male shortlist for that least-coveted of literary prizes, the Bad sex in fiction award.
Haruki Murakami, often named as a contender for the Nobel prize, makes the cut for passages from his latest novel Killing Commendatore ... The controversial US novelist James Frey was selected for a scene in his novel Katerina described by judges as "almost like wish fulfilment" ... continued
In the wake of increasing controversy over the naming of bestselling mystery author Linda Fairstein as one of next year's Grand Master Edgar recipients, Mystery Writers of America has withdrawn the award. Tuesday's announcement had sparked numerous protests on social media and prompted MWA to respond by saying it took the objections seriously and would reexamine the decision. The focus of the protests is Fairstein's role as a member of the Manhattan District Attorney's Office in 1989's Central Park Jogger case, which resulted in the wrongful imprisonment for years of five minority teenagers.
The New York Times has an extensive and moving interview with Anna Burns, who won this year's Man Booker Prize for her novel, Milkman which will be published in the USA on December 4:
Burns is one of the more surprising recent winners of the Booker, one of literature's biggest awards. Milkman was this year's outsider, up against Richard Powers' ecological epic The Overstory and Esi Edugyan's heralded slavery-era Washington Black, among others. It was also labeled an "experimental novel" because its characters are nameless and its paragraphs sometimes run for several pages. Her victory provoked think pieces about the "bold choice."
"I don't understand," said Burns, when asked why it had picked up such an awkward label. "Is it the whole nameless thing? Is it really difficult? The book just didn't want names." (The tag does not seem to have put many off buying it. Faber, her British publisher, has sold over 350,000 copies so far...
Netflix will create an original animated series of Roald Dahl stories including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The BFG and The Twits.
"ald Dahl stories have long inspired award-winning feature films and stage productions," Netflix said in its announcement. "But now, for the first time, Netflix will bring together the highest quality creative, visual, and writing teams to extend the stories in this first-of-its-kind slate of premium animated event series and specials for audiences of all ages and for families to enjoy together."
Following two years in which Margaret Atwood's classic dystopian novel The Handmaid's Tale saw a skyrocketing in readership and new cultural relevance, both on television and in society at large, the author has announced a sequel.
The Testaments, set 15 years after the final scene of The Handmaid's Tale, will be published on September 10, 2019, by Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, with an announced first printing of 500,000 copies.