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The farmer from the Abrahamic religions who committed the first act of murder.

Xerek Files: Entry Number Twenty One – [Legacy of Cain]

Religion has been around for almost as long as Homo sapiens have existed.  It’s even possible that religion has its origins with the previous species of Homo before modern humans have evolved.  As a result, religion has had an effect upon human evolution and development.  They have even helped to shape civilizations and empires.  In the Western World, the dominate religions are the three Abrahamic religions.  As a result, there are those who turn to these religions and their accompanying holy texts as a means to explain how and why extraordinary traits and abilities form and develop.  Among these individuals, there are those who turn to the Mark of Cain as a means to explain this as well as to explain how extraordinary traits and abilities are unnatural and unholy.

With the Bible, it never explains exactly what this Mark looks like or what it is.  All that it says is that God gave Cain a mark as a means of telling everyone not to kill the oldest son of Adam.  The supporters of the claim that extraordinary traits and abilities are connected with the Mark of Cain never describe what the Mark looks like either, but they do connect extraordinary traits and abilities with Cain in one form or another.  This is because of the fact that, at times, extraordinary traits and abilities manifest themselves with easily visible indicators telling the world that this individual possesses extraordinary traits and abilities.  And since the Mark of Cain was an easily visible sign telling people who laid eyes on Cain not to kill him, it allows these individuals to make the connection between extraordinary traits and abilities with the Mark of Cain.

As a result of this connection, a legend has developed and is going around that says Cain was the first mutant to exist on Earth and that it is from him that all extraordinary traits and abilities originate.  There are some who even think that besides receiving his Mark, a part of Cain’s curse was to become immortal for no one, not even Death itself, would dare strike him down.  With this idea, there are mixed opinions regarding his current physical condition with some claiming that he retains his health and vigor while others claim that over time, he has become decrepit and weak but yet continues to live on.

With this legend, through a number of different relationships, it allowed for Cain’s curse to be passed down from one generation to the next, allowing for the propagation and manifestation of extraordinary traits and abilities in others and to spread among the population.  However, there are some who claim that there were people who actually killed Cain, either deliberately or inadvertently, and as a result, became subject to God’s wrath for violating his decree not to kill Cain.  As a punishment for this, God cursed these individuals by causing them to possess and manifest extraordinary traits and abilities.

But regardless of the details or exactly what story the person subscribes to, proponents of this idea claim that all extraordinary traits and abilities, past, present, and future, stem from Cain as a result of him killing his brother.  As a result of this, in these individuals’ eyes, it makes those who possess extraordinary traits and abilities unholy and unnatural, and thus, must be dealt with using appropriate measures to correct the situation and to help protect humanity as a whole, or at least God’s faithful, from the dangers that these individuals pose.  There are even those who claim that doing so is meant to protect the human soul.  But regardless of the details, some believe that acts of violence, ritual exorcisms, or other such actions are the best means of dealing with the situation.  Otherwise, the threat continues to exist and if allowed to go unabated, will condemn all of humanity to the pits of perdition.

 
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Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Xerek Files

 

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Cain’s Second Sacrifice

One of the greatest wrongs that can be done is to punish someone without cause.  This type of action is unwarranted and uncalled for because there is no basis for engaging in such an action.  However, this is exactly what happened with Cain, the first born son of Adam and Eve.  How was he supposed to know how to properly perform a sacrifice to God?  No precedent was established and there was no instruction given on the proper way to perform this ritual.  This was the first time that it was ever done.  How was Cain supposed to know?  It isn’t right to punish someone for their ignorance where such ignorance was through no fault of their own.  But that is what happened to Cain.

The rationale behind punishing Cain was because he failed to sacrifice the best of his crop before God.  But all that occurred in regards to instruction was for Cain to bring a part of his crop whereas Abel was to bring a part of his flock to the altar, nothing more.  This was the first time this ritual was ever performed, so how were they to know what the proper etiquette was when engaging in such a situation?  The individuals engaging in the ritual need to receive proper instruction on how to conduct themselves in such a matter.  Otherwise, the ritual being performed would not be done properly and it would not satisfy the requirements that are expected of it.  And if such a matter were to occur, it’s the fault of the teacher, not the student, for whatever failings are to occur.

That is what happened with Cain.  He was punished for not knowing how to perform the ritual sacrifice properly.  It was not his fault for receiving inadequate instructions on the proper way to conduct the ritual.  And the fallout to come due to the actions of Cain also lie at the feet of those who failed to teach him.  But the reason why such a woeful lack of instruction was given was to set him up in order for him to take a fall.  And why?  Because a moral lesson needed to be taught and he was the sacrificial lamb so that others might benefit.  So Cain was thrust into this situation and was made into a villain for simply being a victim.

Cain was a simple farmer trying to tend his crops and his brother Abel a shepherd boy when they were called forth to perform this sacrifice.  Called forth to provide a part of what they were assigned to do, Cain brought his crops and made his sacrifice.  From there, Abel brought fourth his flock and made his sacrifice.  Once completed, God gave favor to Abel but not to Cain.  When asked about this matter, it was stated that Abel was rewarded because he sacrificed the best of his animals before God whereas Cain did not present the best of his crop.

As natural as rain falling from the sky, Cain became both confused and angered by this response.  Such a reaction is to be expected in this matter for Cain is a human being.  Any other reaction to such a situation would indicate that Cain would have an underlying mental or emotional problem.  He was wronged and punished unjustly, so it was natural for Cain to become angry and jealous over this matter for he was well within his rights to do so.  He was forced to fail through no fault of his own.  And he was forced to witness the fact that his younger brother was chosen as a favored child of God.

After garnering his emotions, Cain thought the situation through.  And being no fool, Cain learned his lesson.  God wants sacrifices of the best that one has to offer, and what is more valuable than family?  So with his second sacrifice, Cain will offer the best that he can provide, and with how valuable this second sacrifice will be, he’ll hope that it will make up for his previous shortcoming in the previous sacrifice.  But once again, no one instructed him in any form of lesson.  He had to learn on his own.  But with this lesson, he had to learn the moral repercussions of killing another human being.  Once again, no precedent or instruction was provided on this matter.  So with his tools, Cain provided the best thing he had available to sacrifice and presented the body of his brother upon the Alter of God, hoping that God will look upon him with favor.  Poor Cain.

 

(c) 2010 Bradley P. Thomas

 
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Posted by on December 25, 2010 in Short Stories

 

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Samael – Chapter Seven

Chapter 7

As Samael leaves the cave and heads into the light, he can’t help but shield his eyes.  Even though Forbidden Lands is dark and bleak, it is still brighter than the pitch blackness of the cave.  But Samael’s eyes adjust quickly, taking only a second or two to adjust.  With the time he spent in the catacomb, Forbidden Lands has become somewhat brighter as the day gets older.

Once his eyes have adjusted to the light, Samael curses the dust that hangs in the air for it gets into his eyes.  Once this irritation has been taken care of, he spreads his black-feathered wings and takes to the air.  Once in the air, he heads in the direction in which he came, back to Orkney Palace and out of Forbidden Lands.

But once he has taken flight, Samael’s eyes are once again drawn to the solitary figure that is lost within Forbidden Lands.  This figure hasn’t made much progress across the landscape during Samael’s absence.  To underscore this point, there is a patch of dust that indicates that the figure fell down and then either sat or laid their for a period of time.  Even though he needs to return to the Palace and take care of some business, Samael decides that he will stop and talk with this figure among the dust and ruins of Forbidden Lands.  He descends quickly and lands hard, kicking up a plume of dust that covers his boots and thighs.  He lands several feet in front of the figure, scaring him badly.

Addressing the figure in a strong but not unkind voice, Samael says, “What are you doing out here, human?”

“Please—please, let me be,” the human says in a scared and almost whinny tone.  “I don’t want any trouble. Please, don’t hurt me.”

“I will not leave you alone because you don’t belong here.  So I ask you again, what are you doing here in Forbidden Lands?”

When Samael asks the human his question, he approaches in an overtly aggressive manner.  As he does this, the human moves backwards in an attempt to retreat.  As a result, his foot catches the edge of a rock, causing him to trip.  He lands hard on his ass, becoming completely covered with dust.  He then scurries back a bit before coming to a stop.  The human has also cut himself when he tripped over the rock.

“I’m just passing through,” he says.  “Please, let me do so in peace.”

As the human gives his response, Samael closes the distance between the two.  As he approaches, Samael notices something about the human that looks familiar; as if he has seen him somewhere before.  As he studies the human’s face, the human says in a whimpering voice, “Please.  Please don’t hurt me.”  He even raises a hand over his face in a defensive manner as he says this.

As Samael looks down upon the frightened figure, the mark that exists upon his forehead screams to be identified.  The mark spans the width of his forehead and makes its way into the hairline as well as the eyebrows.  It is reddish-gold in color and looks as if it is a shadow impression of a forking bolt of lightning.

“Caine?” Samael asks.

“Who are you and what do you want?” Caine responds.  “I have nothing.  I have nothing.”  This last part he says while crying.

“I’m not here to hurt you Caine.  Relax.”  Samael takes a step or two closer as he says this.

“Stay away!” Caine says as he crawls back to his feet.  He begins to run but he trips over another rock, landing flat on his face and once again covering himself in dust.

Unimpressed with what he sees, Samael speaks in a commanding and booming voice that has an echo when he speaks.  “Mortal!  Rise to your feet and stop your groveling!”

As Samael says this, he extends all four of his wings and releases his inner light upon Caine.  Though he relies primarily upon the environment’s light to create his aura, Samael has the capability to generate his own light when the situation calls for it.

As he has been instructed, the broken man known as Caine raises to his feet and turns to face the angel, though his head hangs over his shoulders.  He has stopped his groveling, but his lips continue to tremble.  Once Caine has complied with his demand, Samael folds up his wings and tucks them within his garments.  He also allows his aura to return to its natural, environmental dependent glow.

“Caine, it’s not my intention to hurt you,” Samael says in a friendly voice.  “I just want to talk to you as a friend, as a companion.  Let me help you.”

“You can’t help me.” Caine says as tears stream down his face.  “No one can help me.  I just want my brother back!”

“I know Caine, and I am sorry for what happened to you and your brother.  You didn’t understand the consequences of your actions.  You were just a child.”

“My parents hated me.  My siblings hated me.  Everyone turned against me after what I did.”

“I know Caine.  I was observing it as it occurred.”

“Then why didn’t you do anything?!  Why didn’t you come and stop me?”  Fresh tears come poring out of Caine’s eyes as he reaches down to pickup a rock.

He then throws it at Samael, who catches it easily and then discards it.  Caine reaches down a throws some more rocks at Samael who disposes of them as easily as the first one.  Caine would have thrown more, but the environment ran out of projectiles before he was able to wear himself out.  Once out of projectiles, Caine runs up to the angel, fully intending to strike him, not caring that he is clearly outmatched.  But before a punch is able to land, Samael catches both of Caine’s arms.

“Get a hold of yourself Caine before you do something that we’ll both regret,” Samael says, looking into his eyes.

“Regret?  I’ve been living in regret ever since I killed Abel.  What else can I do to make my life worse?”  At this, Caine relaxes his arms and drops to his knees.  He then leans forward, hugging himself as he does so.

“I understand that you are hurting.  But you have to understand that what you did was beyond your control.”

“No.  It was.  It was under my control.  I should have known better.”

“You had no concept of what you were doing.  No one had died before, let alone murdered.  ‘Knowing better’ implies that you had a point of reference to compare your actions to.  You had no such reference point.  Caine.  You were setup and God is responsible.  God needed someone to set a precedent and he decided that you were the one to do so.  It just so happened that it was your brother Abel who had to pay for it.”

“No.  I don’t want to hear this.  I don’t want to hear this.”  Caine rocks back and forth on his knees as he says this.

“But you will.  You will hear me and you will hear me well.  It was your first offering.  You didn’t understand how it was to be performed.  No one told you what needed to be done, so you had no idea on how you were to proceed.  In addition to this, no one explained to you why your offering was rejected whereas Abel’s offering was accepted.  Abel was rewarded whereas you were punished.  It wasn’t fair and it wasn’t hard to understand why you got upset.  If anyone is to blame for Abel’s death, it should be God, not you.”

“Then how come it hurts so much.”

“Because he was your brother and you miss him.  You didn’t want to hurt him and it tore at your heart to realize what you did to him after it was too late.”

“Leave me alone.”

“If you take anything away from this, remember what I tell you now.  What you did was something that was beyond your understanding until it was too late to take it back.  You are being punished because no one took the time to properly teach you.”  For a moment, Samael pauses, hoping that what he just said will sink in.  “It wasn’t your fault, Caine.  There are people who still care about you.  In fact, there is someone here in Forbidden Lands who cares.  She is in the cave near the highest peak of the mountain range behind me.  I suggest that you go see her.”

Though Samael doubts Caine will go see Lilith, it was worth a shot.  And besides, humanity has surprised him before.

 

(c) 2009 Bradley P. Thomas

 
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Posted by on November 19, 2009 in Samael

 

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