You’re thinking of the future. Of changes. And of safely getting from here to there.
A fee is what is paid to a gatekeeper, who stands in-between an inequity – one lacks whatever is on the other side, and one has the way to gain access to that promised land.
Each time the gate swings and another person or thing moves through the opening a fee is collected.
A seasoned or competitive gatekeeper could create or allow an inequity to develop, and make more fees in the future.
Perhaps there isn’t a real inequity at all, but just a belief that one is coming, and an inevitable rush towards an exit. Nah, who would believe that?
Though, staying one step ahead of a mass of movement be it capital, people or things gives an advantage – a fee worth paying.
We put up windmills to harvest the movement of air arriving in gusts from geothermal changes – hot air rises and the rushing movement pushes the blades and creates electricity. The air is free but the wind movement is harvested.
When harvesting the wind, the one with access to a weather or climate report can get ahead of the orders for new windmills, and purchase land where storms are set to blow.
But there is no harvest when the evening is calm.
From where does the weather report come? The climate report?
A movement of anything happens when there is tension and release. A fee is collected by a gatekeeper and that toll must be paid to gain the needed release.
And if those gatekeepers can charge a fee for release then they could set up a gain from either creating the tension, or at the very least setting the stage for the most base of human nature to step in and exploit the unsuspecting or defenceless.
Who would do that?
To use another story, as this is a story, if a snake offers a free ride across the river a top his head, a mouse who takes the trip would know the risk.
The snake would promise safe passage and the snake would lie. It is in the nature of the snake to have dinner by devouring the mouse, so believing a promise of safe passage would mean a mouse is lying to itself, a beautiful lie, to get to the other side.
To believe and trust a snake because the need is great or the reward could be life changing is to take the risk, and to be responsible for the consequences.
And so with our gate, to believe a beautiful lie is golden to a gatekeeper, collecting a fee and shouting, “Here comes a storm!”,”This way out!”,”Quick, before everyone finds out!”,”Clever mouse!”.
Can you say one is a victim and one is an abuser if everyone is lying to gain an advantage?
The mouse knows the snake carries venom, and that it feeds itself by striking and devouring masses of mice. But the threat of rushing water? But the threat of other angry mice coming? But the treat of a quick and easy journey? But the threat of being last across and losing all?
And so the snake will save you…promises the snake.
And so the snake lies to the mouse, and the mouse lies to itself.
“Beautiful lies” as the author Satyajit Das calls them.
Is there a rushing river? A shortage of food? A field of plenty across the water? Impending doom?
From where did the mouse get its information?
Is there another way to get food? Another way across? Another destination altogether? Why does the mouse not hear of it from the snake?
The mind can be imprisoned and the body as well, but if a participant enters knowing the risk are they truly a victim? Can they aim the spear at the very snake they agreed to follow into the depths?
If the snake did not deliver a promised Eden but instead a bite that pierced the skin with poison, who can say they are surprised? We all know what snakes carry, their history and what they use as their natural weapon.
The pretty, pretty snake uses its tools, and when the puncture comes, do those who agreed to the beautiful lie, who lied to themselves, step up and call out quickly to find a cure?
Will a snake rush to their aid with an antidote when it would result in the loss of tomorrow’s meal?
Can a snake have care for the mouse as more than a meal?
Another beautiful lie?
After all, they paid the fee.
A sword and a shield and a castle worth keeping
A rod and a reel and a season afloat
A dog and a pony are so entertaining
But if we all clap then we all know.
A weather report of a still, sullen morning
Building a castle of silica sand
Washed all away in an afternoon torrent
Who carries a fault with a shaking land
A shaming to share is the teacher to apple
A loss of the hours to bake up that pie
Pass out the piece of a coin of your making
All goes to dust if the builder says “mine”.
Who is the love and who is the foe now
When both declare the beautiful lie
Promise me promise what cannot be given
Take off the brake as hills are to climb
a folk tale of a peculiar politician and banker woe