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WordPress Breakdown

Dear readers,

         Not that long ago, someone inquired about the nature of my wordpress account.  This inquiry centered on the name of my wordpress account and exactly what it was.  A lot of the recent entries I posted here began with the phrase “Xerek Files,” and this person asked if this was the name of my account.  As I think about the situation, I can understand the confusion.  As a result, in an attempt to clarify the situation, I decided to write this particular entry.  With the phrase “Xerek Files,” it is in fact not the name of my wordpress account but instead the name of a document I use as a means of world building for a collection of stories that I have written and continue to expand upon.  In fact, this world building pertains to an entire fictional universe that I have created known as the Fifth Estate.

          The aim of this wordpress account is to allow me to get my writing out to the world.  Found within these digital pages are a number of different stories and essays.  These cover a wide range of topics and subject matters ranging from religious/supernatural fiction to personal opinions and thoughts on certain issues and topics.  With the longer pieces, those that are typically divided up into chapters, they are posted one chapter at a time.

          The first series of entries belong to my novella SamaelSamael is a work of religious/supernatural fiction and is my retelling of the Fall of Lucifer.  In this retelling, I essentially say that it was not out of pride, but a broken heart, that led Lucifer to rebel against God.  With the telling of the story, I don’t remember having any real plan or objective with its construction beyond that of retelling the story.  I didn’t have any specific word count or other measure of story length that I was aiming to achieve.  It was nothing more than a story that I wanted to tell.  And in the telling of Samael, I referred to other elements found within the Abrahamic religions.  These included the Archangels Michael and Gabriel, Cain, Adam’s first wife Lilith, Adam and Eve, Job, the Forbidden Fruit, the Garden of Eden, the Serpent, and the use of Satan as a title.  I plan on eventually writing a sequel to this story, taking the form of a full length novel.  In this novel, Lucifer, Cain, and possibly Lilith, will make an appearance in the narrative as well as including Judas in the story.  In the same spirit of retelling a well known narrative, I plan on putting my own spin surrounding the story surrounding Judas.

          Some time after posting this story, I posted my first full length novel, An Enemy WithinAn Enemy Within is a superhero piece where the superpowers in question aren’t as super as what we have come to expect from the genre.  The approach I used in this story is that, if superpowers really existed, how would they work?  As a result, a fair number of powers were dropped, never to be seen again.  With the powers that do exist, they can be seen as the weaker, distant cousins of the superpowers that we are all familiar with.  The story itself follows a woman by the name of Shannon who is a socially minded youth who fights for mutant rights, leading her to join the New World Power.  However, when she first joins the New World Power, she doesn’t fully understand the aim and nature of the organization.  When she does realize what the New World Power is about, it leads to tensions to arise, not only in Shannon, but between her and the New World Power itself.  And it is through this tension that the story is told.  An Enemy Within also acts as the first main story within the universe of the Fifth Estate.

          With the Fifth Estate, it is the larger universe in which An Enemy Within, as well as a number of different stories, takes place.  With the origin of the Fifth Estate name, it comes from the Estate of the Realms, first introduced in medieval France.  With the Estate of the Realms, it consists of three estates which are as follows; the First Estate consists of the clergy, the Second Estate consists of the nobility, and the Third Estate consists of the commoner.  Reinterpreting and expanding upon this concept, I created the Social Estates.  With the Social Estates, the First Estate consists of the clergy, the Second Estate consists of people of prominence, the Third Estate consists of the working class, the Fourth Estate consists of the media, and the Fifth Estate consists of misfits and outcasts.  It is within the Fifth Estate that those who are seen as possessing superpowers are typically found.

          The reason why I posted An Enemy Within here on wordpress is because I lost the flash drive that the story was stored on due to me being attacked.  This attack centered on the fact that a random stranger wanted my laptop and I refused to hand it over.  As a result, he threatened my life followed by grabbing me in an attempt to physically steal my computer.  During the scuffle, though I was able to hold on to my laptop, the very laptop that I used to write this entry, my flash drive broke free of its lanyard and vanished.  Concerned that my attacker took it, accompanied by the fact that no book agent responded to my queries about the manuscript, I decided to post it online as a means of establishing some form of copy right on the material.

          Besides An Enemy Within, other Fifth Estate stories and elements are found within this wordpress account.  These stories include Seeing the Light, The Boy From Upstate, LAX Massacre, National Registration and Regulation Act of Individuals with Gifted or Extraordinary Abilities, a rough Fifth Estate Timeline, and The Xerek FilesSeeing the Light is a novelette that follows a young boy who possesses a mutant ability that appears to others as if he has turned into a human torch.  As a result of this, it causes family tensions and eventually leads him to a faith healer, an experience that emotionally scars the young boy.  With The Boy From Upstate, it deals with people who are mutants but don’t possess any superpowers.  All that they possess are odd physical characteristics and nothing more.  As a result of this, it leads to a hate crime to be committed against one of these individuals, resulting in the individual’s death.  With LAX Massacre, it takes place not that long after the 9/11attacks and centers around an attack on LAX itself.  With National Registration and Regulation Act of Individuals with Gifted or Extraordinary Abilities, it came out of the Mutant Registration Act that has been mentioned within the Marvel Universe.  Because the Mutant Registration Act was only mentioned within the comics and never really addressed directly, I decided to actually flush out and write an actual bill that is being discussed in front of Congress with the aim of regulating those with superpowers.  The Fifth Estate timeline is meant to give a rough guideline of some world events to help give the audience an idea of when the events of a particular story of the Fifth Estate took place.  Finally, with The Xerek Files, they are notes and entries found within the journal of a geneticist who is specializing in individuals who possess superpowers.

          Finally, there are some random entries and essays found within this wordpress account.  Three of these essays pertain to misanthropy and the others are essentially just random entries.  Of these random entries, they consist of me seeing a UFO, depression, Attributes of a Monster, and the difference between robots, cyborgs, and androids, just to name a few.  There is even a reposting of someone else’s post regarding scale of different things in the universe, ranging from DNA strands all the way up through galaxies.  So it is here that I shall come to an end.  I hope that this has helped clarify the situation and the aim of this wordpress account.  And keep reading, regardless of the story or author involved.

Bradley P. Thomas

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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The Pain of Depression

Human beings are an emotional species. Love, hate, anger, sadness; these are just some of the emotions that we are capable of experiencing. One such emotion, and what this entry is going to be about, is depression. Depression is an emotional state of extreme sadness that typically saps the light, happiness, and joy a person can experience in their lives. It can become so bad that the individual can actually feel pain because of it. This pain is not a physical one, but an emotional one. But because of how the brain is wired, it doesn’t distinguish between the two. Pain is pain and the brain doesn’t care about what form it takes. And like physical pain, emotional pain can become so bad that the only relief that a person can see to relieve it is through death, typically done through suicide. But even though they see death as the only way of obtaining any kind of relief, they don’t want to die. All that they want is for the pain to stop, that’s all.

With depression, it blinds the sufferer to the world around them, preventing them from seeing the good things that they have in their life. In addition to this, it prevents them from obtaining any kind of enjoyment out of life that just might exist for them. They also feel like they can’t be helped out of the pit that they find themselves in. The only way that they can escape the pain, as stated earlier, is to enter the waiting arms of death. Depression causes this to be the only answer that they see as being readily available for them to use, and thus, the only way out of the situation that they find themselves in. Depression is an all consuming beast that just doesn’t care about the sufferer or those who are in that person’s life.

As a result of this, I see depression as an emotional cancer. With cancer, it is essentially the person’s body turn cannibalistic. The cells of the person’s body divide and spread uncontrollably, impairing function and preventing the body from operating properly. Depression is no different. But in the case of depression, instead of the person’s cells consuming the individual alive, it is their emotional state that is eating them from the inside out. And it is beyond the person’s control. They can’t help it.

With cancer, people can and do die because of it. Some people fight it while others accept it. With those who accept it, it can occur when they first learn of the diagnosis while others accept it after fighting it for as long as they can. However, there are some who fight it all the way. But they are not held morally responsible for what happens to them. However, we do hold those who commit suicide morally responsible for what they do. This may be because suicide victims actively take their own life whereas cancer victims are typically subject to something that is beyond their control. But it’s important to note that depression is a medical condition that is beyond the person’s ability to control. This can be due to factors in the person’s environment, social life, or is a part of a chemical imbalance within their system. The person can be socially isolated from others, experience pressures that they can’t handle, are socially awkward, have some kind of identity crisis, or was physically or sexually assaulted for whatever reason. It can even be a combination of these factors that play into the person’s condition.

But regardless of the reason, it rests beyond the person’s control. They shouldn’t be blamed for their condition or the fallout that results from it. And some of them do seek help and are able to be treated for their depression while others seek help but still follow through on taking their own life. The factors that are in play into this can be quite numerous and be quite complicated. Depression is also a highly individualistic emotional state for it is literally tailored to fit that particular person. As a result, their medical treatment, like any type of medical treatment, needs to be tailored to that particular person. Basic tools and stepping stones act as the groundwork for this treatment, but from there, need to be customized and fit that person’s needs. Emotional injuries and traumas should be treated like any physical injury or trauma. The only difference between emotional and physical traumas is that emotional traumas aren’t visible and readily identifiable whereas physical traumas are. But a part of our physical being is the emotional element that resides in all of us.

And like any physical injury, if a person’s emotional conditions go untreated, it can lead to infection and the wounds will fester. The body has the potential of fighting these things off, but it can take a lot out of the person and can leave a nasty scar behind. However, there are limits to what the body can do and it can’t always fight off every threat it faces, resulting in the death of the individual. With emotional injuries, it can lead to the inevitable result of suicide. People suffering from depression don’t want to experience the pain that accompanies depression. Yes, it’s normal to experience sadness, even great sadness, but it becomes unhealthy and dangerous if it goes on for too long, especially if it goes untreated. But depression can’t be helped. Thus, those who suffer from depression shouldn’t be ostracized because of it and those who commit suicide shouldn’t be condemned. It’s not their fault.

With suicide, there are more people affected then just the person who commits this act. There are friends and family who are left behind who have to deal with the emotional fallout of the situation. They are left wondering what they could have done in order to save the person as well as ask themselves why they didn’t see the signs that the person was going to commit suicide. They can also be left angry and embittered by the situation for they don’t have a way of dealing or resolving it. They are just stuck in the situation with no way of getting out of the predicament they find themselves in. They also need someone or something to blame, and since the person who committed suicide is the only person that is readily available for them to latch on to and lash out at, the victim of suicide becomes the target of this anger and blame. As a result of this, it has become a social taboo in the Western World to commit suicide. This taboo has become so ingrained within Western culture that it has found its way into the holy books of the three Abrahamic religions, thus creating a religious taboo against this act as well.

A result of this is that a lot of ideas and attitudes surrounding suicide have formed. One such idea describes suicide as a permanent solution to a temporary problem. But for those who suffer from depression, have considered suicide, or have attempted or have successfully committed it don’t feel that their condition is temporary. For them, it is quite permanent. As a result, it can require them to receive a lifetimes worth of treatment without it even being fully cured. And those who suffer from depression can engage in acts of self-harm, something that can take on a number of different forms. These can include engaging in physical harm and injury with suicide being on one extreme of the spectrum, becoming socially isolated or withdrawn from others, beating themselves up emotionally, wondering what they could have done in situations where they were hurt in one form or another, fixating on events or situations that are beyond their control, or turning to comfort activities like eating to help fill the void they are feeling.

In addition to this depression, these individuals can feel like their emotional state is their burden to bear and theirs alone. This can be due to the fact that they see it as being unfair to burden others with their pain. As a result, it can cause them to feel that they are all alone, which in turn only exacerbates the situation. They can even appear to be alright on the outside without a care or worry in the world. This can be due to the fact that they just want to turn and hide, not wanting others to feel bad for them or to cause others to suffer because of them. But this doesn’t erase the fact that they can be hurting inside and just burying the pain that they are feeling.

In the end, those suffering from depression or have considered, attempted, or succeeded at committing suicide shouldn’t be the subject of moral judgment. They are victims of something that they can’t help or otherwise control and are suffering because of it. What these people need is help, not ridicule. Like any living thing, they have a sense of self-preservation that causes them to want to live. However, the pain that they are experiencing can override this sense of self-preservation, causing them to seek an end to the pain that they have to endure, something that is typically done through the means of suicide. Suicide, like gangrene, is nothing more than a symptom of something much greater and deeper then what is readily seen and needs to be treated like any physical medical condition. If not, a lot of needless suffering will occur because of it and a lot of people will needlessly die as a result of this.

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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I find this to be pretty interesting. I just had to share it.

Science-Based Life

It is hard to describe it without seeing it for yourself, but the link below is to a flash application which shows the various scales of the universe. From the inconceivably large to the smallest physically possible, the interactive scale below shows that our human conceptions of “large” and “small” are almost comically lacking in completeness.

You can find the scale here. [Make sure to turn your volume up for proper effect]

The scale covers a wide range of scientific concepts, so make sure to click on the aspects of the scale that you want to learn more about (I’d recommend checking out the “Planck length,” it’s mind bendingly small, in fact it’s the smallest).

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Posted by on April 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Seeing a UFO

UFO’s have become a fixture of modern American culture.  It has become so popular and widespread that it has become the label of an entire community.  This community believes that extraterrestrials are visiting Earth.  From my perspective, whenever the phrase UFO is used, it pertains to people who have seen something strange in the sky and aren’t able to identify it and then become believers in alien visitations.  However, this perspective is a bit biased because whenever I come across people who tell stories about UFO’s, they are also believers in aliens.

But to be honest, I once saw a UFO myself.  I saw it when I was still living in the house I grew up in.  I can’t remember exactly why, but I was out walking down my street when I saw it. As I was making my way down the street, I got a glimpse of something in the sky before it went behind a house.  Since I only got a glimpse of the object, I wasn’t able to immediately identify what it was.  However, after some time had gone by, accompanied by some critical thinking, I was able to conclude that what I saw was the tail section of a private plane that was flying in the area. What helped me reach this conclusion was the fact that I noticed other private planes flying around before I saw it.

It’s important to note what I mean by UFO.  What UFO stands for is “Unidentified Flying Object.”  If you see something moving in the sky that you cannot identify, then it is a UFO.  This is the basic meaning of the phrase.  And when I use the phrase UFO here in this essay, as well as generally, I’m using it in this basic meaning: it’s an Unidentified Flying Object. However, when other people use the phrase, UFO stands for a visiting alien spacecraft.  But that’s not what it means.  It’s a flying object that you cannot identify.  That’s it, and nothing more.  It’s important not to read anything more into it than that.  But because humanity is a pattern seeking creature, we want to give greater meaning to things then they really deserve.

What inspired me to write this entry was because I saw two red dots flying in the night sky last night while I was sitting in the hot tub at my current residence.  As I was sitting there, staring at them, I was interested.  But after about a seconds thought, I realized that they were nothing more than private planes of terrestrial origin.  I noticed a lot of private planes, as well as a few helicopters, flying around the area, so I was able to quickly conclude that those little red dots must have been private planes.  And what allowed me to reach such a conclusion so quickly was the fact that I had a continuing, uninterrupted view of the objects.  And once I figured out what the objects were, I no longer cared what they were because I was able to figure them out.

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Author’s Note

Its’ been awhile since I posted anything here on WordPress.  This is because I was attacked on March 30th of this year by a punk ass little bitch.  As a result, it put a major kink in my desire to write, which I haven’t completely gotten over yet.  I tried to start writing again not too long ago, but it didn’t stick, though I hope this will change.  In addition to hindering my desire to write, the attack caused me to lose a lot of intellectual property.  This is because my flashdrive that I had on a lanyard around my neck broke off and I couldn’t find it after the attack.  And on top of that, I didn’t backup the information that I had on it, and I did a lot of work, not only to my second novel, but to supplemental information for some of my other stories.  The supplemental information consisted of world building for my first manuscript about the New World Power as well as world building for another manuscript that I’ve been kicking around in my head but haven’t really sat down to write yet.  What I did write down was also lost that night.  With the supplemental information for my first manuscript, I’ve already started posting the material on WordPress before the attack, as seen with the Xerek Files 1 through 3.  I had other information ready to go, but I wanted to wait about a week or two before posting, causing it to be lost.  But what got me to write this note, and hopefully encourage me to write some more, is a dumb fuck who almost ran me over with his car while I was walking home today from work.  That post should be coming shortly and classified under the “Essays of Misanthropy” category.  In addition to this, I’ll be posting my first manuscript on here as well.  I haven’t been having any luck getting an agent so far, and I don’t want to sit on my story any longer.  Its set a few years ago and the more time that goes by, the more I think it could hurt my story.  And besides, it might also snag the eye of someone in the business and allow me to actually make some fucking money off of it.

 
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Posted by on August 10, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Attributes of a Monster

Humanity is by its very nature story tellers.  And throughout its history, humanity has developed stories and legends meant to help explain the events and situations that they saw occurring in the world around them.  Through this story telling, humanity has developed monsters and other such creatures to explain the evils that they saw occurring around them.  From acts of nature to humanities inhumanity to itself, monsters helped to explain why such things occur.  What monsters embody is the fear of the unknown, things of the dark, and the worst parts of human nature.  And regardless of what form they take, monsters are a cross-cultural phenomenon found in every society on Earth and will span the breath of time.  Even though the details will vary from culture to culture, the over arching principle still remains; that monsters exist.

Because of this shared cultural experience, the average person will have a general idea of what a monster is.  However, when it comes to the specifics, the average person won’t be able to identify exactly what a monster is.  This is because they haven’t spent the time to delve deeper into the matter and analyze exactly what a monster is or what traits or attributes that are found in every one of them.  And to be honest, why should they?  The average person doesn’t need to understand the physiological effects of snake venom to understand that a snake bite is dangerous.  The same principle applies to monsters.  All that they know is that they can identify a monster when they see one.  But as someone who is interested in the subject, I have spent some time analyzing the matter and gave it some thought.  Through this analysis, I developed a list of three common, overarching attributes found in every monster.  These attributes are 1) superior strength, 2) superior resistance to attack, and 3) evil intent and resolve.

Superior strength is the attribute that allows a monster to overpower its opponent so that it can achieve its goal.  What this means is that the average human being cannot match the monster in physical competition.  Even though this attribute can take many forms, it typically manifests itself through physical strength that is above and beyond that of the average human being.  This means that the average human being must rely upon a hero to protect them or upon their wits in order to outsmart the monster in question.  Otherwise, the subject of the monster’s terror will continue to remain in a state of fear.

Superior resistance to attack is the attribute that makes it very hard for someone to injure or hurt the monster when a move is made against it.  When an attack is made against the monster, it is either easily deflected, is absorbed by the monster, doing little to no damage to it, or the person in question is so badly frightened that the person is unable to attack the monster in the first place.  This in turn allows the monster to continue upon its course and do as it pleases.  From there, the subject of the monster’s terror remains in a continued state of peril.  The only way for the monster to be hurt is if excessive amounts of damage is done to it or is somehow outsmarted during battle.  Until then, it will not be stopped.

Evil intent and resolve is the attribute that represents the purpose and motivation of the monster.  It actively wants to do harm and install fear in others for no other purpose than doing harm and installing fear in others.  The actions that the monster takes, as well as its very presence, threatens the safety and harmony of whatever is subject to its terror.  The whole idea that surrounds the very concept of evil is a value judgment and will vary from culture to culture, even from person to person.  But since a story is told for a given culture, it will fit perfectly for what that culture determines as evil.  But regardless of what values a particular culture holds, evil is the violation of those values, regardless of if that violation is intentional or not.  With the very nature of monsters, they have an innate understanding of these cultural values and judgments and will do what it can to intentionally violate them.  What this means is that the monsters values are in direct opposition to that of societies.  Because of this, it threatens the very fabric of the culture, making the monster something that needs to be stopped.  Otherwise, if it goes unchecked, the monster will eventually destroy society itself.

 
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Posted by on November 9, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

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