Behold the man

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Michael Moorcock

Anybody who has read The Passover Plot will see what is going on here quickly enough. This story won the Nebula award in its category. It deals with a man who travels through Time in search of the Christ. He is, in a very strange way, successful in his quest. On first reading, if you're of the Christian persuasion, this story may seem blasphemous and irreverent. Well, maybe it is. Maybe the author is an iconoclast. Say that. Then again, maybe you're an atheist, and a sophisticated one, and you might say that the author is kicking a dead dog. Say that. Christian or atheist, though, if these be your initial reactions, consider the story a bit more closely; it may just be that both reactions are wrong.

Michael Moorcock is a wondrous man, twice the size of any of us, with a beard like Father Time and the ability to practically kill himself for that which he loves and believes in. He edits the British periodical New Worlds, which has been the vehicle for some very fine tellings since he took it over. He is a good editor, and a man who would literally give you his shirt, if you were to stop him on the street and demonstrate that you really needed it. He is a professional human being. What more can I say? Plenty. I've met Michael Moorcock a couple times, and because of this I know what I am saying when I say that there are very few people who could spend an afternoon with him and not come away liking him.

Read his story very carefully, please.
He has no material power as the god-emperors had; he has only a following of desert people and fishermen. They tell him he is a god; he believes them. The followers of Alexander said: "He is unconquerable, therefore he is a god.' The followers of this man do not think at all; he was their act of spontaneous creation. Now he leads them, this mad-man called Jesus of Nazareth.

And he spoke, saying unto them: Yeah verily I was Kari Glogauer and now I am Jesus the Messiah, the Christ. And it was so.

The time machine was a sphere full of milky fluid in which the traveler floated, enclosed in a rubber suit, breathing through a mask attached to a hose leading to the wall of the machine. The sphere cracked as it landed and the fluid spilled into the dust and was soaked up. Instinctively, Glogauer curled himself into a ball as the level of the liquid fell and he sank to the yielding plastic of the sphere's inner lining. The instruments, cryptographic, unconventional, were still and silent. The sphere shifted and rolled as the last of the liquid dripped from the great gash in its side.

Momentarily, Glogauer's eyes opened and closed, then his mouth stretched in a kind of yawn and his tongue fluttered and he uttered a groan that turned into a ululation.

He heard himself. The Voice of Tongues, he thought.

The language of the unconscious. But he could not guess what he was saying.

His body became numb and he shivered. His passage through time had not been easy and even the thick fluid had not wholly protected him, though it had doubtless saved his life. Some ribs were certainly broken. Painfully, he straightened his arms and legs and began to crawl over the slippery plastic towards the crack in the machine. He could see harsh sunlight, a sky like shimmering steel. He pulled himself half-way through the crack, closing his eyes as the full strength of the sunlight struck then). He lost consciousness.

Christmas term, 1949. He was nine years old, born two years after his father had reached England from Austria. The other children were screaming with laughter in the gravel of the playground. The game had begun earnestly enough and somewhat nervously Karl had joined in in the same spirit. Now he was crying.

"Let me down! Please, Mervyn, stop it!"

They had tied him with his arms spreadeagled against the wire-netting of the playground fence. It bulged outwards under his weight and one of the posts threatened to come loose. Mervyn Williams, the boy who had proposed the game, began, to shake the post so that Karl was swung heavily back and forth on the netting.

"Stop it!"

He saw that his cries only encouraged them and he clenched his teeth, becoming silent.

He slumped, pretending unconsciousness; the school ties they had used as bonds cut into his wrists. He heard the children's voices drop.

"Is he all right?" Molly Turner was whispering.

"He's only kidding." Williams replied uncertainly.

He felt them untying him, their fingers fumbling with the knots. Deliberately, he sagged, then fell to his knees, grazing them on the gravel, and dropped face down to the ground. Distantly, for he was half-convinced by his own deception, he heard their worried voices.

Williams shook him.

"Wake up, Karl. Stop mucking about."

He stayed where he was, losing his sense of time until he heard Mr. Matson's voice over the general babble.

"What on earth were you doing, Williams?"

"It was a play, sir, about Jesus. Karl was being Jesus. We tied him to the fence. It was his idea, sir. It was only a game, sir."

Karl's body was stiff, but he managed to stay still, breathing shallowly.

"He's not a strong boy like you, Williams. You should have known better."

"I'm sorry, sir. I'm really sorry." Williams sounded as if he were crying.

Karl felt himself lifted; felt the triumph. . . .

He was being carried along. His head and side were so painful that he felt sick. He had had no chance to discover where exactly the time machine had brought him, but, turning his head now, he could see by the way the man on his right was dressed that he was at least m the Middle East. He had meant to land in the year 29 A.D. in the wilderness beyond Jerusalem, near Bethlehem. Were they taking him to Jerusalem now?

He was on a stretcher that was apparently made of animal skins; this indicated that he was probably in the past, at any rate. Two men were carrying the stretcher on their shoulders. Others walked on both sides. There was a smell of sweat and animal fat and a musty smell he could not identify. They were walking towards a line of hills in the distance. He winced as the stretcher lurched and the pain in his side increased. For the second time he passed out.

He woke up briefly, hearing voices. They were speaking what was evidently some form of Aramaic. It was night, perhaps, for it seemed very dark. They were no longer moving. There was straw beneath him. He was relieved. He slept.

In those days came John the Baptist preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying. The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Iudaea, and all the region round about Jordan, And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins. (Matthew 3:1-6)

They were washing him. He felt the cold water running over his naked body. They had managed to strip off his protective suit. There were now thick layers of cloth against his ribs on the right, and bands of leather bound them to him.

He felt very weak now, and hot, but there was less pain. He was in a building - or perhaps a cave; it was too gloomy to tell - lying on a heap of straw that was saturated by the water. Above him, two men continued to sluice water down on him from their earthenware pots. They were stern-faced, heavily-bearded men, in cotton robes.

He wondered if he could form a sentence they might understand. His knowledge of written Aramaic was good, but he was not sure of certain pronunciations.

He cleared his throat. "Where be this place?"

They frowned, shaking their heads and lowering their water jars.

"I seek a Nazarene Jesus. . . ."

"Nazarene. Jesus." One of the men repeated the words, but they did not seem to mean anything to him. He shrugged. The other, however, only repeated the word Nazarene, speaking it slowly as if it had some special significance for him. He muttered a few words to the other man and went towards the entrance of the room.

Karl Glogauer continued to try to say something the remaining man would understand.

"What year doth the Roman Emperor sit in Rome?"

It was a confusing question to ask, he realized. He knew Christ had been crucified in the fifteenth year of Tiberius' reign, and that was why he had asked the question. He tried to phrase it better.

"How many year doth Tiberius rule?"

"Tiberius?" The man frowned.

Glogauer's ear was adjusting to the accent now and he tried to simulate it better. "Tiberius. The emperor of the Romans. How many years has he ruled?"

"How many?" The man shook his head. "I know not."

At least Glogauer had managed to make himself understood.

"Where is this place?" he asked.

"It is the wilderness beyond Machaerus," the man replied.

"Know you not that?"

Machaerus lay to the southeast of Jerusalem, on the other side of the Dead Sea. There was no doubt that he was in the past and that the period was sometime in the reign of Tiberius, for the man had recognized the name easily enough. His companion was now returning, bringing with him a

huge fellow with heavily muscled hairy arms and a great

barrel chest. He carried a big staff in one hand. He was

dressed in animal skins and was well over six feet tall. His

black, curly hair was long and he had a black, bushy beard

that covered the upper half of his chest. He moved like an

animal and his large, piercing brown eyes looked reflectively

at Glogauer.

When he spoke, it was in a deep voice, but too rapidly for

Glogauer to follow. It was Glogauer's turn to shake his head.

The big man squatted down beside him. "Who art thou?"

Glogauer paused. He had not planned to be found in this

way. He had intended to disguise himself as a traveler from

Syria, hoping that the local accents would be different enough

to explain his own unfamiliarity with the language. He

decided that it was best to stick to this story and hope for

the best.

"I am from the north," he said.

"Not from Egypt?" the big man asked. It -was as if he had

expected Glogauer to be from there. Glogauer decided that if

this was what the big man thought, he might just as well

agree to it.

"I came out of Egypt two years since," he said.

The big man nodded, apparently satisfied. "So you are

a magus from Egypt. That is what we thought. And your

name is Jesus, and you are the Nazarene."

"I seek Jesus, the Nazarene," Glogauer said.

"Then what is your name?" The man seemed disappointed.

Glogauer could not give his own name. It would sound

too strange to them. On impulse, he gave his father's first

name. "Emmanuel," he said.

The man nodded, again satisfied. "Emmanuel."

Glogauer realized belatedly that the choice of name had

been an unfortunate one in the circumstances, for Emmanuel

meant in Hebrew "God with us" and doubtless had a mystic

significance for his questioner.

"And what is your name?" he asked.

The man straightened up, looking broodingly down on

Glogauer. "You do not know me? You have not heard of

John, called the Baptist?"

Glogauer tried to hide his surprise, but evidently John the

Baptist .saw that his name was familiar. He nodded his shaggy

bead. "You do know of me, I see. Well, magus, now I must

decide, eh?"

"What must you decide?" Glogauer asked nervously.

"If you be the friend of the prophecies or the false one

. we have been warned against by Adonai. The Romans would

deliver me into the hands of mine enemies, the children of


"Why is that?"

"You must know why, for I speak against the Romans who

enslave Judaea, and I speak against the unlawful things that

Herod does, and I prophesy the time when all those who

are not righteous shall be destroyed and Adonai's kingdom

will be restored on Earth as the old prophets said it would

be. I say to the people, 'Be ready for that day when ye shall

take up the sword to do Adonai's will.' The unrighteous

know that they will perish on this day, and they would

destroy me."

Despite the intensity of his words, John's tone was matter

of fact. There was no hint of insanity or fanaticism in his

face or bearing. He sounded most of all like an Anglican

vicar reading a sermon whose meaning for him had lost its


The essence of what he said, Karl Glogauer realized, was

that he was arousing the people to throw out the Romans

and their puppet Herod and establish a more "righteous"

regime. The attributing of this plan to "Adonai" (one of the

spoken names of Jahweh and meaning The Lord) seemed,

as many scholars had guessed in the 20th century, a means

of giving the plan extra weight. In a world where politics

and religion, even in the west, were inextricably bound to-

gether, it was necessary to ascribe a supernatural origin to

the plan.

Indeed, Glogauer thought, it was more than likely that

John believed his idea had been inspired by God, for the

Greeks on the other side of the Mediterranean had not yet

stopped arguing about the origins of inspirationwhether it

originated in a man's head or was placed there by the gods.

That John accepted him as an Egyptian magician of some

kind did not surprise Glogauer particularly, either. The cir-

cumstances of his arrival must have seemed extraordinarily

miraculous and at the same time acceptable, particularly to a

sect like the Essenes who practiced self-mortification and

starvation and must be quite used to seeing visions in this hot

wilderness. There was no doubt now that these people were

the neurotic Essenes, whose ritual washingbaptismand

self-deprivation, coupled with the almost paranoiac mysticism

that led them to invent secret languages and the like, was a

sure indication of their mentally unbalanced condition. All

this occurred to Glogauer the psychiatrist manque, but Glo-

gauer the man was torn between the poles of extreme ra-

tionalism and the desire to be convinced by the mysticism


"I must meditate," John said, turning towards the cave

entrance. "I must pray. You will remain here until guidance

is sent to me."

He left the cave, striding rapidly away.

Glogauer sank back on the wet straw. He was without

doubt in a limestone cave, and the atmosphere in the cave

was surprisingly humid. It must be very hot outside. He felt



Five years in the past. Nearly two thousand in the future.

Lying in the hot, sweaty bed with Monica. Once again, an-

other attempt to make normal love had metamorphosed into

the performance of minor aberrations which seemed to

satisfy her better than anything else.

Their real courtship and fulfillment was yet to come. As

usual, it would be verbal. As usual, it would find its climax

in argumentative anger.

"I suppose you're going to tell me you're not satisfied

again." She accepted the lighted cigarette he handed to her

in the darkness.

"I'm all right," he said.

There was silence for a while as they smoked.

Eventually, and in spite of knowing what the result would

be if he did so, he found himself talking.

"It's ironic, isn't it?" he began.

He waited for her reply. She would delay for a little

while yet.

"What is?" she said at last.

"All this. You spend all day trying to help sexual neurotics

to become normal. You spend your nights doing what they


"Not to the same extent. You know it's all a matter of


"So you say."

He turned his head and looked at her face in the starlight

from the window. She was a gaunt-featured redhead, with

the calm, professional seducer's voice of the psychiatric social

worker that she was. It was a voice that was soft, reasonable

and insincere. Only occasionally, when she became particu-

larly agitated, did her voice begin to indicate her real charac-

ter. Her features never seemed to be in repose, even when

she slept. Her eyes were forever wary, her movements rarely

spontaneous. Every inch of her was protected, which was

probably why she got so little pleasure from ordinary love-


"You just can't let yourself go, can you?" he said.

"Oh, shut up, Karl. Have a look at yourself if you're

looking for a neurotic mess."

Both were amateur psychiatristsshe a psychiatric social

worker, he merely a reader, a dabbler, though he had done

a year's study some time ago when he had planned to be-

come a psychiatrist. They used the terminology of psychia-

try freely. They felt happier if they could name something.

He rolled away from her, groping for the ashtray on the

bedside table, catching a glance of himself in the dressing

table mirror. He was a sallow, intense, moody Jewish book-

seller, with a head full of images and unresolved obsessions,

a body full of emotions. He always lost these arguments

with Monica. Verbally, she was the dominant one. This kind

of exchange often seemed to him more perverse than their

lovemaking, where usually at least his role was masculine.

Essentially, he realized, he was passive, masochistic, in-

decisive. Even his anger, which came frequently, was im-

potent. Monica was ten years older than he was, ten years

more bitter. As an individual, of course, she had far more

dynamism than he had; but as a psychiatric social worker

she had had just as many failures. She plugged on, becoming

increasingly cynical on the surface but still, perhaps, hoping

for a few spectacular successes with patients. They tried to

do too much, that was the trouble, he thought. The priests

in the confessional supplied a panacea; the psychiatrists tried

to cure, and most of the time they failed. But at least they

tried, he thought, and then wondered if that was, after all,

a virtue.

"I did look at myself," he said.

Was she sleeping? He turned. Her wary eyes were still

open, looking out of the window.

"I did look at myself," he repeated. "The way Jung did.

'How can I help those persons if I am myself a fugitive and

perhaps also suffer from the morbus sacer of a neurosis?'

That's what Jung asked himself. . . ."

"That old sensationalist. That old rationalizer of. his own

mysticism. No wonder you never became a psychiatrist."

"I wouldn't have been any good. It was nothing to do

with Jung. . . ."

"Don't take it out on me. . . ."

"You've told me yourself that you feel the sameyou

think it's useless. . . ."

"After a hard week's work, I might say that. Give me an-

other fag."

He opened the packet on the bedside table and put two

cigarettes in his mouth, lighting them and handing one to


Almost abstractedly, he noticed that the tension was in-

creasing. The argument was, as ever, pointless. But it was

not the argument that was the important thing; it was simply

the expression of the essential relationship. He wondered if

that was in any way important, either.

"You're not telling the truth." He realized that there was

no stopping now that the ritual was in full swing.

"I'm telling the practical truth. I've no compulsion to give

up my work. I've no wish to be a failure. . . ."

"Failure? You're more melodramatic than I am."

"You're too earnest, Karl. You want to get out of yourself

a bit."

He sneered. "If I were you, I'd give up my work, Monica.

You're no more suited for it than I was."

She shrugged. "You're a petty bastard."

"I'm not jealous of you, if that's what you think. You'll

never understand what I'm looking for."

Her laugh was artificial, brittle. "Modem man in search

of a soul, eh? Modern man in search of a crutch, I'd say.

And you can take that any way you like."

"We're destroying the myths that make the world go


"Now you say 'And what are we putting in their place?'

You're stale and stupid, Karl. You've never looked rationally

at anythingincluding yourself."

"What of it? You say the myth is unimportant."

"The reality that creates it is important."

"Jung knew that the myth can also create the reality."

"Which shows what a muddled old fool he was."

He stretched his legs. In doing so, he touched hers and

he recoiled. He scratched his head. She still lay there smok-

ing, but she was smiling now.

"Come on," she said. "Let's have some stuff about Christ."

He said nothing. She handed him the stub of her cigarette

and he put it in the ashtray. He looked at his watch. It was

two o'clock in the morning.

"Why do we do it?" he said.

"Because we must." She put her hand to the back of his

head and pulled it towards her breast. "What else can we


We- Protestants must sooner or later face this question:

Are we to understand the "imitation of Christ" in the sense

that we should copy his life and, if I may use the expression,

ape his stigmata; or in the deeper sense that we are to live

our own proper lives as truly as he lived his in all its im-

plications? It is no easy matter to live a life that is modeled

on Christ's, but it is unspeakably harder to live one's own

life as truly as Christ lived his. Anyone who did this would

. . . be misjudged, derided, tortured and crucified. . . . A

neurosis is a dissociation of personality.

(Jung; Modem Man in Search of a Soul)

For a month, John the Baptist was away and Glogauer

lived with the Essenes, finding it surprisingly easy, as his

ribs mended, to join in their daily life. The Essenes' town-

ship consisted of a mixture of single-story houses, built of

limestone and clay brick, and the caves that were to be found

on both sides of the shallow valley. The Essenes shared their

goods in common and this particular sect had wives, though

many Essenes led completely monastic lives. The Essenes

were also pacifists, refusing to own or to make weapons

yet this sect plainly tolerated the warlike Baptist. Perhaps

their hatred of the Romans overcame their principles. Per-

haps they were not sure of John's entire intention. Whatever

the reason for their toleration, there was little doubt that

John the Baptist was virtually their leader.

The life of the Essenes consisted of ritual bathing three

times a day, of prayer and of work. The work was not dif-

ficult. Sometimes Glogauer guided a plough pulled by two

other members of the sect; sometimes he looked after the

goats that were allowed to graze on the hillsides. It was a

peaceful, ordered life, and even the unhealthy aspects were

so much a matter of routine that Glogauer hardly noticed

them for anything else after a while.

Tending the goats, he would lie on a hilltop, looking out

over the wilderness which was not a desert, but rocky scrub-

land sufficient to feed animals like goats or sheep. The scrub-

land was broken by low-lying bushes and a few small trees

growing along the banks of the river that doubtless ran into

the Dead Sea. It was uneven ground. In outline, it had the

appearance of a stormy lake, frozen and turned yellow and

brown. Beyond the Dead Sea lay Jerusalem. Obviously Christ

had not entered the city for the last time yet. John the

Baptist would have to die before that happened.

The Essenes' way of life was comfortable enough, for all

its simplicity. They had given him a goatskin loincloth .and

a staff and, except for the fact that he was watched by day

and night, he appeared to be accepted as a kind of lay

member of the sect.

Sometimes they questioned him casually about his chariot

the time machine they intended soon to bring in from the

desertand he told them that it had borne him from Egypt

to Syria and then to here. They accepted the miracle calmly.

As he had suspected, they were used to miracles.

The Essenes had seen stranger things than his time ma-

chine. They had seen men walk on water and angels descend

to and from heaven; they had heard the voice of God and

His archangels as well as the tempting voice of Satan and

his minions. They wrote all these things down in their vel-

lum scrolls. They were merely a record of the supernatural

as their other scrolls were records of their daily lives and

of the news that traveling members of their sect brought to


They lived constantly in the presence of God and spoke

to God and were answered by God when they had sufficiently

mortified their flesh and starved themselves and chanted their

prayers beneath the blazing sun of Judaea.

Karl Glogauer grew his hair long and let his beard come

unchecked. He mortified his flesh and starved himself and

chanted his prayers beneath the sun, as they did. But he

rarely heard God and only once thought he saw an arch-

angel with wings of fire.

In spite of his willingness to experience the Essenes' hal-

lucinations, Glogauer was disappointed, but he was surprised

that he felt so well considering all the self-inflicted hardships

he had to undergo, and he also felt relaxed in the company

of these men and women who were undoubtedly insane.

Perhaps it was because their insanity was not so very dif-

ferent from his own that after a while he stopped wondering

about it.

John the Baptist returned one evening, striding over the

hills followed by twenty or so of his closest disciples. Glo-

gauer saw him as he prepared to drive the goats into their

cave for the night. He waited for John to get closer.

The Baptist's face was grim, but his expression softened

as he saw Glogauer. He smiled and grasped him by the

upper arm in the Roman fashion.

"Well, Emmanuel, you are our friend, as I thought you

were. Sent by Adonai to help us accomplish His will. You

shall baptize me on the morrow, to show all the people that

He is with us."

Glogauer was tired. He had eaten very little and had spent

most of the day in the sun, tending the goats. He yawned,

finding it hard to reply. However, he was relieved. John had

plainly been in Jerusalem trying to discover if the Romans

had sent him as a spy. John now seemed reassured and

trusted him.

He was worried, however, by the Baptist's faith ill his


"John," he began. "J'm no seer. . . ."

The Baptist's face clouded for a moment, then he laughed

awkwardly. "Say nothing. Eat with me tonight. I have wild-

honey and locusts."

Glogauer had not yet eaten this food, which was the staple

of travelers who did not carry provisions but lived off the

food they could find on the journey. Some regarded it as a


He tried it later, as he sat in John's house. There were

only two rooms in the house. One was for eating in, the

other for sleeping in. The honey and locusts was too sweet

for his taste, but .it was a welcome change from barley or


He sat cross-legged, opposite John the Baptist, who ate

with relish. Night had fallen. From outside came low mur-

murs and the moans and cries of those at prayer.

Glogauer dipped another locust into the bowl of honey

that rested between them. "Do you plan to lead the people

of Judaea in revolt against the Romans?" he asked.

The Baptist seemed disturbed by the direct question. It

was the first of its nature that Glogauer had put to him.

"If it be Adonai's will," he said, not looking up as he

leant towards the bowl of honey.

"The Romans know this?"

"I do not know, Emmanuel, but Herod the incestuous has

doubtless told them I speak against the unrighteous."

"Yet the Romans do not arrest you."

"Pilate dare notnot since the petition was sent to the

Emperor Tiberius."


"Aye, the one that Herod and the Pharisees signed when

Pilate the procurator did place votive shields in the palace

at Jerusalem and seek to violate the Temple. Tiberius re-

buked Pilate and since then, though he still hates the Jews,

the procurator is more careful in his treatment of us."

"Tell me, John, do you know how long Tiberius has ruled

in Rome?" He had not had the chance to ask that question

again until now.

"Fourteen years."

It was 28 A.D.something less than a year before the-

crucifixion would take place, and his time machine was


Now John the Baptist planned armed rebellion against the

occupying Romans, but, if the Gospels were to be believed,

would soon be decapitated by Herod. Certainly no large-

scale rebellion had taken place at this time. Even those who

claimed that the entry of Jesus and his disciples into Jeru-

salem and the invasion of the Temple were plainly the ac-

tions of armed rebels had found no records to suggest that

John had led a similar revolt.

Glogauer had come to like the Baptist very much. The

man was plainly a hardened revolutionary who had been

planning revolt against the Romans for years and had slowly

been building up enough followers to make the attempt suc-

cessful. He reminded Glogauer strongly of the resistance

leaders of the Second World War. He had a similar tough-

ness and understanding of the realities of his position. He

knew that he would only have one chance to smash the

cohorts garrisoned in the country. If the revolt became pro-

tracted, Rome would have ample time to send more troops

to Jerusalem.

"When do you think Adonai intends to destroy the un-

righteous through your agency?" Glogauer said tactfully.

John glanced at him with some amusement. He smiled.

"The Passover is a time when the people are restless and

resent the strangers most," he said.

"When is the next Passover?"

"Not for many months."

"How can I help you?"

"You are a magus."

"I can work no miracles."

John wiped the honey from his beard. "I cannot believe

that, Emmanuel. The manner of your coming was miracu-

' lous. The Essenes did not know if you were a devil or a

messenger from Adonai."

"I am neither."

"Why do you confuse me, Emmanuel? I know that you

are Adonai's messenger. You are the sign that the Essenes

sought. The time is almost ready. The kingdom of heaven

shall soon be established on earth. Come with me. Tell the

people that you speak with Adonai's voice. Work mighty


"Your power is waning, is that it?" Glogauer looked

sharply at John. "You need me to renew your rebels'


"You speak-like a Roman, with such lack of subtlety."

John got up angrily. Evidently, like the Essenes he lived

with, he preferred less direct conversation. There was a

practical reason for this, Glogauer realized, in that John and

his men feared betrayal all the time. Even the Essenes'

records were partially written in cipher, with one innocent-

seeming word or phrase meaning something else entirely.

"I am sorry, John. But tell me if I am right." Glogauer

spoke softly.

"Are you not a magus, coming in that chariot from no-

where?" The Baptist waved his hands and shrugged his

shoulders. "My men saw you! They saw the shining thing

take shape in air, crack and let you enter out of it. Is that

not magical? The clothing you worewas that earthly rai-

ment? The talismans within the chariotdid they not speak

of powerful magic? The prophet said that a magus would

come from Egypt and be called Emmanuel. So it is written in

the Book of Micah! Are none of these things true?"

"Most of them. But there are explanations" He broke

off, unable to think of the nearest word to "rational." "I am

an ordinary man, like you. I have no power to work mira-

cles! I am just a man!"

John glowered. "You mean you refuse to help us?"

"I'm grateful to you and the Essenes. You saved my life

almost certainly. If I can repay that . . ."

John nodded his head deliberately. "You can repay it,



"Be the great magus I need. Let me present you to all

those who become impatient and would turn away from

Adonai's will. Let me tell them the manner of your coming

to us. Then you can say that all is Adonai's will and that

they must prepare to accomplish it."

John stared at him intensely.

"Will you, Emmanuel?"

"For your sake, John. And in turn, will you send men

to bring my chariot here as soon as possible? I wish to see if

it may be mended."

"I will."

Glogauer felt exhilarated. He began to laugh. The Bap-

tist looked at him with slight bewilderment. Then he began

to join in.

Glogauer laughed on. History would not mention it, but

he, with John the Baptist, would prepare the way for Christ.

Christ was not born yet. Perhaps Glogauer knew it, one

year before the crucifixion.

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us (and

we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the

Father), full of grace and truth. John bare witness of him,

and cried, saying. This was he of whom I spake, He that

cometh after me is preferred before me; for he was before


(John 1:14-15)

Even when he had first met Monica they had had long

arguments. His father had not then died and left him the

money to buy the Occult Bookshop in Great Russell Street,

opposite the British Museum. He was doing all sorts of

temporary work and his spirits were very low. At that time

Monica had seemed a great help, a great guide through the

mental darkness engulfing him. They had both lived close to

Holland Park and went there for walks almost every Sunday

of the summer of 1962. At twenty-two, he was already ob-

sessed with Jung's strange brand of Christian mysticism.

She, who despised Jung, had soon begun to denigrate all his

ideas. She never really convinced him. But, after a while, she


had succeeded in confusing him. It would be another six

months before they went to bed together.

It was uncomfortably hot.

They sat in the shade of the cafeteria, watching a distant

i cricket match. Nearer to them, two girls and a boy sat on

the grass, drinking orange squash from plastic cups. One

of the girls had a guitar across her lap and she set the cup

down and began to play, singing a folksong in a high, gentle

voice. Glogauer tried to listen to the words. As a student, he

had always liked traditional folk music.

"Christianity is dead." Monica sipped her tea. "Religion is

dying. God was killed in 1945."

"There may yet be a resurrection," he said.

"Let us hope not. Religion was the creation of fear.

Knowledge destroys fear. Without fear, religion can't sur-


"You think there's no fear about these days?"

"Not the same kind, Karl."

"Haven't you ever considered the idea of Christ?" he

asked her, changing his tack. "What that means to Chris-


"The idea of the tractor means as much to a Marxist,"

she replied.

"But what came first? The idea or the actuality of Christ?"

She shrugged. "The actuality, if it matters. Jesus was a

Jewish troublemaker organizing a revolt against the Romans.

He was crucified for his pains. That's all we know and all

we need to know."

"A great religion couldn't have begun so simply."

"When people need one, they'll make a great religion out

of the most unlikely beginnings."

"That's my point, Monica." He gesticulated at her and

she drew away slightly. "The idea preceded the actuality of


"Oh, Karl, don't go on. The actuality of Jesus preceded

the idea of Christ."

A couple walked past, glancing at them as they argued.

Monica noticed them and fell silent. She got up and he

rose as well, but she shook her head. "I'm going home, Karl.

You stay here. I'll see you in a few days."

He watched her walk down the wide path towards the

park gates.

The next day, when he got home from work, he found

a letter. She must have written it after she had left him

and posted it the same day.

Dear Karl,

Conversation doesn't seem to have much effect on you,

you know. It's as if you listen to the tone of the voice, the

rhythm of the words, without ever hearing what is trying to

be communicated. You're a bit like a sensitive animal who

can't understand whafs being said to it, but can tell if the

person talking is pleased or angry and so on. Thafs why I'm

writing to youto try to get my idea across. You respond

too emotionally when we're together.

You make the mistake of considering Christianity as some-

thing that developed over the course of a few years, from

the death of Jesus to the time the Gospels were written. But

Christianity wasn't new. Only the name was new. Chris-

tianity was merely a stage in the meeting, cross-fertilization

metamorphosis of Western logic and Eastern mysticism. Look

how the religion itself changed over the centuries, re-in-

terpreting itself to meet changing times. Christianity is just a

new name for a conglomeration of old myths and philoso-

phies. All the Gospels do is retell the sun myth and garble

some of the ideas from the Greeks and Romans. Even in the

second century, Jewish scholars were showing it up for the

mish-mash it was! They pointed out the strong similarities

between the various sun myths and the Christ myth. The

miracles didn't happenthey were invented later, borrowed

from here and there.

Remember the old Victorians who used to say that Plato

was really a Christian because he anticipated Christian

thought? Christian thought! Christianity was a vehicle for

ideas in circulation for centuries before Christ. Was Marcus

Aurelius a Christian? He was writing in the direct tradition

of Western philosophy. That's why Christianity caught on in

Europe and not in the East! You should have been a theo-

logian with your bias, not a psychiatrist. The same goes for

your friend Jung.

Try to clear your head of all this morbid nonsense and

you'll be a lot better at your job.



He screwed the letter up and threw it away. Later that

evening he was tempted to look at it again, but he resisted

the temptation.


John stood up to his waist in the river. Most of the Essenes

stood on the banks watching him. Glogauer looked down at


"I cannot, John. It is not for me to do it."

The Baptist muttered, "You must."

Glogauer shivered as he lowered himself into the river

beside the Baptist. He felt light-headed. He stood there

trembling, unable to move.

His foot slipped on the rocks of the river and John reached

out and gripped his arm, steadying him.

In the clear sky, the sun was at zenith, beating down on

his unprotected head.

"Emmanuel!" John cried suddenly. "The spirit of Adonai

is within you!"

Glogauer still found it hard to speak. He shook his head

slightly. It was aching and he could hardly see. Today he

was having his first migraine attack since he had come here.

He wanted to vtfmit. John's voice sounded distant.

He swayed in the water.

As he began to fall toward the Baptist, the whole scene

around him shimmered. He felt John catch him and heard

himself say desperately: "John, baptize me!" And then there

was water in his mouth and throat and he was coughing.

John's voice was crying something. Whatever the words

were, they drew a response from the people on both banks.

The roaring in his ears increased, its quality changing. He

thrashed in the water, then felt himself lifted to his feet.

"The Essenes were swaying in unison, every face lifted up-

wards towards the glaring sun.

Glogauer began to vomit into the water, stumbling as I

John's hands gripped his arms painfully and guided him up

the bank.

A peculiar, rhythmic humming came from the mouths of

the Essenes as they swayed; it rose as they swayed to one

side, fell as they swayed to the other.

Glogauer covered his ears as John released him. He was

still retching, but it was dry now, and worse than before.

He began to stagger away, barely keeping his balance,

running, with his ears still covered; running over the rocky

scrubland; running as the sun throbbed in the sky and its

heat pounded at his head; running away.

But John forbade him, saying, I have need to be baptized

of thee, and earnest thou to me? And Jesus answering said

unto him. Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to

fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus,

when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water:

and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the

Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

And lo a voice from heaven, saying. This is my beloved Son,

in whom I am well pleased.

(Matthew 3:14-17)

He had been fifteen, doing well at the grammar school.

He had read in the newspapers about the Teddy Boy gangs

that roamed South London, but the odd youth he had seen

in pseudo-Edwardian clothes had seemed harmless and stupid


He had gone to the pictures in Brixton Hill and decided

to walk home to Streatham because he had spent most of

the bus money on an ice cream. They came out of the

cinema at the same time. He hardly noticed them as they

followed him down the hill.

Then, quite suddenly, they had surrounded him. Pale,

mean-faced boys, most of them a year or two older than he

was. He realized that he knew two of them vaguely. They

Were at the big council school in the same street as the gram-

mar school. They used the same football ground.

"Hello," he said weakly.

"Hello, son," said the oldest Teddy Boy. He was chewing

gum, standing with one knee bent, grinning at him. "Where

you going, then?"


"Heouwm," said the biggest one, imitating his accent.

"What are you going to do when you get there?"

"Go to bed." Karl tried to get through the ring, but they

wouldn't let him. They pressed him back into a shop door-

way. Beyond them, cars droned by on the main road. The

street was brightly lit, with street lamps and neon from the

shops. Several people passed, but none of them stopped.

Karl began to feel panic.

"Got no homework to do, son?" said the boy next to the

leader. He was redheaded and freckled and his eyes were

a hard gray.

"Want to fight one of us?" another boy asked. It was one

of the boys he knew.

"No. I don't fight. Let me go."

"You scared, son?" said the leader, grinning. Ostenta-

tiously, he pulled a streamer of gum from his mouth and

then replaced it. He began chewing again.

"No. Why should I want to fight you?"

"You reckon you're better than us, is that it, son?"

"No." He was beginning to tremble. Tears were coming

into his eyes. " 'Course not."

" 'Course not, son."

He moved forward again, but they pushed him back into

the doorway.

"You're the bloke with the kraut name, ain't you?" said

the other boy he knew. "Glow-worm or somethink."

"Glogauer. Let me go."

"Won't your mummy like it if you're back late?"

"More a yid name than a kraut name."

"You a yid, son?"

"He looks like a yid."

"You a yid, son?"

"You a Jewish boy, son?"

"You a yid, son?"

"Shut up!" Karl screamed. He pushed into them. One

of them punched him in the stomach. He grunted with pain.

Another pushed him and he staggered.

People were still hurrying by on the pavement. They

glanced at the group as. they went past. One man stopped,

but his wife pulled him on. "Just some kids larking about,"

she said.

"Get his trousers down," one of the boys suggested with

a laugh. "That'll prove it."

Karl pushed through them and this time they didn't resist.

He began to run down the hill.

"Give him a start," he heard one of the boys say.

He ran on.

They began to follow him, laughing.

They did not catch up with him by the time he turned

into the avenue where he lived. He reached the house and

ran along the dark passage beside it. He opened the back

door. His stepmother was in the kitchen.

"What's the matter with you?" she said.

She was a tall, thin woman, nervous and hysterical. Her

dark hair was untidy.

He went past her into the breakfast-room.

"What's the matter, Karl?" she called. Her voice was


"Nothing," he said.

He didil't want a scene.

It was cold when he woke up. The false dawn was gray

and he could see nothing but barren country in all directions.

He could not remember a great deal about the previous day,

except that he had run a long way.

Dew had gathered on his loincloth. He wet his lips and

rubbed the skin over his face. As he always did after a

migraine attack he felt weak and completely drained. Look-

ing down at his naked body, he noticed how skinny he had

become. Life with the Essenes had caused that, of course.

He wondered why he had panicked so much when John

had asked him to baptize him. Was it simply honesty

something in him which resisted deceiving the Essenes into

thinking he was a prophet of some kind? It was hard to


He wrapped the goatskin about his hips and tied it tightly

just above his left thigh. He supposed he had better try to get

back to the camp and find John and apologize, see if he could

make amends.

The time machine was there now, too. They had dragged

it there, using only rawhide ropes.

If a good blacksmith could be found, or some other metal-

worker, there was just a chance that it could be repaired.

The journey back would be dangerous.

He wondered if he ought to go back right away, or try

to shift to a time nearer to the actual crucifixion. He had

not gone back specifically to witness the crucifixion, but to

get the mood of Jerusalem during the Feast of the Passover,

when Jesus was supposed to have entered the city. Monica-

had thought Jesus had stormed the city with an armed band.

She had said that all the evidence pointed to All the

evidence of one sort did point to it, but he could not accept

the evidence. There was more to it, he was sure. If only he

could meet Jesus. John had apparently never heard of him,

though he had told Glogauer that there was a prophecy that

the Messiah would be a Nazarene. There were many prophe-

cies, and many of them conflicted.

He began to walk back in the general direction of the

Essdhe camp. He could not have come so far. He would

soon recognize the hills where they had their caves.

Soon it was very hot and the ground more barren. The

air wavered before his eyes. The feeling of exhaustion with

which he had awakened increased. His mouth was dry and

his legs were weak. He was hungry and there was nothing

to eat. There was no sign of the range of hills where the

Essenes had their camp.

There was one hill, about two miles away to the south.

He decided to make for it. From there he would probably

be able to get his bearings, perhaps even see a township

where they would give him food.

The sandy soil turned to floating dust around him as

his feet disturbed it. A few primitive shrubs clung to the

ground and jutting rocks tripped him.

He was bleeding and bruised by the time he began, pain-

fully, to clamber up the hillside.

The journey to the summit (which was much farther

away than he had originally judged) was difficult. He would

slide on the loose stones of the hillside, falling on his face,

bracing his torn hands and feet to stop himself from slid-

ing down to the bottom, clinging to tufts of grass and lichen

that grew here and there, embracing larger projections of

rock when he could, resting frequently, his mind and body

both numb with pain and weariness.

He sweated beneath the sun. The dust stuck to the mois-

ture on his half-naked body, caking him from head to foot.

The goatskin was in shreds.

The barren world reeled around him, sky somehow merg-

ing with land, yellow rock with white clouds. Nothing

seemed still.

He reached the summit and lay there gasping. Everything

had become unreal.

He heard Monica's voice, thought he glanced at her for a

moment from the corner of his eye.

Don't be melodramatic, Karl. . . .

She had said that many times. His own voice replied now.

I'm born out of my time, Monica. This age of reason

has no place for me. It will kill me in the end.

Her voice replied.

Guilt and fear and your own masochism. You could be

a brilliant psychiatrist, but you've given in to all your own

neuroses so completely. . . .

"Shut up!"

He rolled over on his back. The sun blazed down on his

tattered body.

"Shut up!"

The whole Christian syndrome, Karl. You'll become a

Catholic convert next I shouldn't doubt. Where's your

strength of mind?

"Shut up! Go away, Monica."

Fear shapes your thoughts. You're not searching for a

soul or even a meaning for life. You're searching for com-


"Leave me alone, Monica!"

His grimy hands covered his ears. His hair and beard

were matted with dust. Blood had congealed on the minor

wounds that were now on every part of his body. Above,

the sun seemed to pound in unison with his heartbeats.

You're going downhill, Karl, don't you realize that?

Downhill. Pull yourself together. You're not entirely inca-

pable of rational thought. . . .

"Oh, Monica! Shut up!"

His voice was harsh and cracked. A few ravens circled the

sky above him now. He heard them .calling back at him

in a voice not unlike his own.

God died in 1945. . . .

"It isn't 1945it's 28 A.D. God is alive!"

How you can bother to wonder about an obvious syn-

cretistic religion like ChristianityRabbinic Judaism, Stoic

ethics, Greek mystery cults. Oriental ritual. . ..

"It doesn't matter!"

Not to you in your present state of mind.

"I need God!"

That's what it boils down to, doesn't it? Okay, Karl,

carve your own crutches, lust think what you could have

been if you'd have come to terms with yourself. . . .

Glogauer pulled his mined body to its feet and stood

on the summit of the hill and screamed.

The ravens were startled. They wheeled in the sky and

flew away.

The sky was darkening now.

Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness

to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty

days and forty night, he was afterward anhungered.

(Matthew 4:1-2)


The madman came stumbling into the town. His feet stirred

the dust and made it dance and dogs barked around him

as he walked mechanically, his head turned upwards to face

the sun, his arms limp at his sides, his lips moving.

To the townspeople, the words they heard were in no

familiar language; yet they were uttered with such intensity

and conviction that God himself might be using this ema-

ciated, naked creature as his spokesman.

They wondered where the madman had come from.

The white town consisted primarily of double- and single-

storied houses of stone and clay-brick, built around a market

place that was fronted by an ancient, simple synagogue

outside which old men sat and talked, dressed in dark robes.

The town was prosperous and clean, thriving on Roman

commerce. Only one or two beggars were in the streets and

these were well-fed. The streets followed the rise and fall of

the hillside on which they were built. They were winding

streets, shady and peaceful: country streets. There was a

smell of newly-cut timber everywhere in the air, and the

sound of carpentry, for the town was chiefly famous for its

skilled carpenters. It lay on the edge of the Plain of Jezreel,

close to the trade route between Damascus and Egypt, and

wagons were always leaving it, laden with the work of the

town's craftsmen. The town was called Nazareth.

The madman had found it by asking every traveler he

saw where it was. He had passed through other towns

Philadelphia, Gerasa, Pella and Scythopolis, following the

Roman roadsasking the same question in his outlandish

accent: "Where lies Nazareth?"

Some had given him food on the way. Some had asked

for his blessing and he had laid hands on them, speaking

in that strange tongue. Some had pelted him with stones

and driven him away.

He had crossed the Jordan by the Roman viaduct and

continued northwards towards Nazareth.

There had been no difficulty in finding the town, but it

had been difficult for him to force himself towards it. He

had lost a great deal of blood and had eaten very little on

the journey. He would walk until he collapsed and lie

there until he could go on, or, as had happened increasingly,

until someone found him and had given him a little sour

wine or bread to revive him.

Once some Roman legionaries had stopped and with

brusque kindness asked him if he had any relatives they

could take him to. They had addressed him in pidgin-Ara-

maic and had been surprised when he replied in a strangely-

accented Latin that was purer than the language they spoke


They asked him if he was a Rabbi or a scholar. He told

them he was neither. The officer of the legionaries had

offered him some dried meat and wine. The men were part

of a patrol that passed this way once a month. They were

stocky, brown-faced men, with hard, clean-shaven faces.

They were dressed in stained leather kilts and breastplates

and sandals, and had iron helmets on their heads, scab-

barded short swords at their hips. Even as they stood around

him in the evening sunlight they did not seem relaxed. The

officer, softer-voiced than his men but otherwise much like

them save that he wore a metal breastplate and a long

cloak, asked the madman what his name was. .

For a moment the madman had paused, his mouth opening

and closing, as if he could not remember what he was


"Karl," he said at length, doubtfully. It was more a sug-

gestion than a statement.

"Sounds almost like a Roman name," said one of the le-


"Are you a citizen?" the officer asked.

But the madman's mind was wandering, evidently. He

looked away from them, muttering to himself.

All at once, he looked back at them and said: "Nazareth?"

"That way." The officer pointed down the road that cut

between the hills. "Are you a Jew?"

This seemed to startle the madman. He sprang to his

feet and tried to push through the soldiers. They let him

through, laughing. He was a harmless madman.

They watched hi'in ran down the road.

"One of their prophets, perhaps," said the officer, walk-

ing towards his horse. The country was full of them. Every

other man you met claimed to be spreading the message of

their god. They didn't make much trouble and religion

seemed to keep their minds off rebellion. We should be

grateful, thought the officer.

His men were still laughing.

They began to march down the road in the opposite

direction to the one the madman had taken.

Now the madman was in Nazareth and the townspeople

looked at him with curiosity and more than a little suspicion

as he staggered into the market square. He could be a

wandering prophet or he could be possessed by devils. It

was often hard to tell. The rabbis would know.

As he passed the knots of people standing by the mer-

chants' stalls, .they fell silent until he had gone by. Women

pulled their heavy woolen shawls about their well-fed bodies

and men tucked in their cotton robes so that he would not

touch them. Normally their instinct would have been to have

taxed him with his business in the town, but there was an

intensity about his gaze, a quickness and vitality about his

face, in spite of his emaciated appearance, that made them

treat him with some respect and they kept their Sistance.

When he reached the center of the market place, he

stopped and looked around him. He seemed slow to notice

the people. He biinked and licked his lips.

A woman passed, eyeing him warily. He spoke to her,

his voice soft, the words carefully formed. "Is this Nazareth?"

"It is." She nodded and increased her pace.

A man was crossing the square. He was dressed in a woolen

robe of red and brown stripes. There was a red skull cap on

his curly, black hair. His face was plump and cheerful. The

madman walked across the man's path and stopped him. "I

seek a carpenter."

"There are many carpenters in Nazareth. The town is

famous for its carpenters. I am a carpenter myself. Can I

help you?" The man's voice was good-humored, patronizing.

"Do you know a carpenter called Joseph? A descendant

of David. He has a wife called Mary and several children.

One is named Jesus."

The cheerful man screwed his face into a mock frown

and scratched the back of his neck. "I know more than one

Joseph. There is one poor fellow in yonder street." He

pointed. "He has a wife called Mary. Try there. You should

soon find him. Look for a man who never laughs."

The madman looked in the direction in which the man

pointed. As soon as he saw the street, he seemed to forget

everything else and strode towards it.

In the narrow street he entered the smell of cut timber

was even stronger. He walked ankle-deep in wood-shavings.

From every building came the thud of hammers, the scrape

of saws. There were planks of all sizes resting against the

pale, shaded walls of the houses and there was hardly room

to pass between them. Many of the carpenters had their

benches just outside their doors. They were carving bowls,

operating simple lathes, shaping wood into everything imag-

inable. They looked up as the madman entered the street

and approached one old carpenter in a leather apron who

sat at his bench carving a figurine. The man had gray

hair and seemed short-sighted. He peered up at the madman.

"What do you want?"

"I seek .a carpenter called Joseph. He has a wifeMary."

The old man gestured with his hand that held the half-

completed figurine. "Two houses along on the other side

of the street."

The house the madman came to had very few planks

leaning against it, and the quality of the timber seemed

poorer than the other wood he had seen. The bench near

the entrance was warped on one side and the man who

sat hunched over it repairing a stool seemed misshapen also.

He straightened up as the madman touched his shoulder.

His face was lined and pouched with misery. His eyes were

tired and his thin beard had premature streaks of gray. He

coughed slightly, perhaps in surprise at being disturbed.

"Are you Joseph?" asked the madman.

"I've no money."

"I want nothingjust to ask a few questions."

"I'm Joseph. Why do you want to know?"

"Have you a son?"

"Several, and daughters, too."

"Your wife is called Mary? You are of David's line."

The man. waved his hand impatiently. "Yes, for what

good either have done me. . . ."

"I wish to meet one of your sons. Jesus. Can you tell me

where he is?"

"That good-for-nothing. What has he done now?"

"Where is he?"

Joseph's eyes became more calculating as he stared at

the madman. "Are you a seer of some kind? Have you

come to cure my son?"

"I am a prophet of sorts. I can foretell the future."

Joseph got up with a sigh. "You can see him. Come."

He led the madman through the gateway into the cramped

courtyard of the house. It was crowded with pieces of wood,

broken furniture and implements, rotting sacks of shavings.

They entered the darkened house. In the first roomevi-

dently a kitchena woman stood by a large clay stove. She

was tall and bulging with fat. Her long, black hair was

unbound and greasy, falling over large, lustrous eyes that

still had the heat of sensuality. She looked the madman


"There's no food for beggars," she grunted. "He eats

enough as it is." She gestured with a wooden spoon at a

small figure sitting in the shadow of a corner. The figure

shifted as she spoke.

"He seeks our Jesus," said Joseph to the woman. "Per-

haps he comes to ease our burden."

The woman gave the madman a sidelong look and

shrugged. She licked her red lips with a fat tongue. "Jesus!"

The figure in the comer stood up.

"That's him," said the woman with a certain satisfaction.

The madman frowned, shaking his head rapidly. "No."

The figure was misshappen. It had a pronounced hunched

back and a cast in its left eye. The face was vacant and

foolish. There was a little spittle on the lips. It giggled as

its name was repeated. It took a crooked step forward. "Je-

sus," it said. The word was slurred and thick. "Jesus."

"That's all he can say." The woman sneered. "He's always

been like that."

"God's judgment," said Joseph bitterly.

"What is wrong with him?" There was a pathetic, des-

perate note in the madman's voice.

"He's always been like that." The woman turned back

to the stove. "You can have him if you want him. Addled

inside and outside. I was carrying him when my parents

married me off to that half-man. . . ."

"You shameless" Joseph stopped as his wife glared at

him. He turned to the madman. "What's your business with

our son?"

"I wished to talk to him. I . . ."

"He's no oracleno seerwe used to think he might be.

There are still people in Nazareth who come to him to

cure them or tell their fortunes, but he only giggles at

them and speaks his name over and over again. . . ."

"Areyou surethere is notsomething about himyou

have not noticed?"

"Sure!" Mary snorted sardonically. "We need money

badly enough. If he had any magical powers, we'd know."

Jesus giggled again and limped away into another room.

"It is impossible," the madman murmured. Could history

itself have changed? Could he be in some other dimension

of time where Christ had never been?

Joseph appeared to notice the look of agony in the mad-

man's eyes.

"What is it?" he said. "What do you see? You said you

foretold the future. Tell us how we will fare?"

"Not now," said the prophet, turning away. "Not now"

He ran from the house and down the street with its smell

of planed oak, cedar and cypress. He ran back to the market

place and stopped, looking wildly about him. He saw the

synagogue directly ahead of him. He began to walk towards


The man he had spoken to earlier was still .in the market

place, buying cooking pots to give to his daughter as a

wedding gift. He nodded towards the strange man as he

entered the synagogue. "He's a relative of Joseph the

carpenter," he told the man beside him. "A prophet, I

shouldn't wonder."

The madman, the prophet, Karl Glogauer, the time-trav-

eler, the neurotic psychiatrist manque, the searcher for

meaning, the masochist, the man with a death-wish' and

the messiah-complex, the anachronism, made his way into

the synagogue gasping for breath. He had seen the man he

had sought. He had seen Jesus, the son of Joseph and

Mary. He had seen a man he recognized without any doubt

as a congenital imbecile.

"All men have a messiah-complex, Karl," Monica had


The memories were less complete now. His sense of time

and identity was becoming confused.

"There were dozens of messiahs in Galilee at the time.

That Jesus should have been the one to carry the myth

and the philosophy was a coincidence of history. . . ."

"There must have been more to it than that, Monica."

Every Tuesday in the room above the Occult Bookshop,

the Jungian discussion group would meet for purposes of

group analysis and therapy. Glogauer had not organized the

group, but he had willingly lent his premises to it and had

joined it eagerly. It was a great relief to talk with like-minded

people once a week. One of his reasons for buying the Occult

Bookshop was so that he would meet interesting people like

those who attended the Jungian discussion group.

An obsession with Jung brought them together, but every-

one had special obsessions of his own. Mrs. Rita Blen charted

the courses of flying saucers, though it was not clear if she

believed in them or not. Hugh Joyce believed that all Jungian

archetypes derived from the original race of Atlantides who

bad perished millennia before. Alan Cheddar, the youngest

of the group, was interested in Indian mysticism, and Sandra

Peterson, the organizer, was a great witchcraft specialist.

James Headington was interested in time. He was the group's

pride; he was Sir James Headington, war-time inventor, very

rich and with all sorts of decorations for his contribution to

the Allied victory. He had had the reputation of being a

great improviser during the war, but after it he had become

something of an embarrassment to the War Office. He was

a crank, they thought, and what was worse, he aired his

crankiness in public.

Every so often. Sir James would tell the other members

of the group about his time machine. They humored him.

Most of them were liable to exaggerate their own experi-

ences connected with their different interests.

One Tuesday evening, after everyone else had left, Head-

ington told Glogauer that his machine was ready.

"I can't believe it," Glogauer said truthfully.

"You're the first person I've told."

"Why me?"

"I don't know. I like youand the shop."

"You haven't told the government."

Headington had chuckled. "Why should I? Not until I've

tested it fully, anyway. Serves them right for putting me

out to pasture."

"You don't know it works?"

"I'm sure it does. Would you like to see it?"

"A time machine." Glogauer smiled weakly.

"Come and see it."

"Why me?"

"I thought you might be interested. I know you don't

hold with the orthodox view of science. . . ."

Glogauer felt sorry for him.

"Come and see," said Headington.

He went down to Banbury the next day. The same day

he left 19J6 and arrived in 28 A.D.

The synagogue was cool and quiet with a subtle scent of

incense. The rabbis guided him into the courtyard. They,

like the townspeople, did not know what to make of him,

.but they were sure it was not a devil that possessed him.

It was their custom to give shelter to the roaming prophets

who were now everywhere in Galilee, though this one was

stranger than the rest. His face was immobile and his body

was stiff, and there were tears running down his dirty cheeks.

They had never seen such agony in a man's eyes before.

"Science can say how, but it never asks why," he had

told Monica. "It can't answer."

"Who wants to know?" she'd replied.

"I do."

"Well, you'll never find out, will you?"

"Sit down, my son," said the rabbi. "What do you wish

to ask of us?"

"Where is Christ?" he said. "Where is Christ?"

They did not understand the language.

"Is it Greek?" asked one, but another shook his head.

Kyrios; The Lord.

Adonai: The Lord.

Where was the Lord?

He frowned, looking vaguely about him.

"I must rest," he said in their language.

"Where are you from?"

He could not think what to answer.

"Where are you from?" a rabbi repeated.

"Ha-Olam Hab-bah . . ." he murmured at length'

They looked at one another. "Ha-Olam Hab-bah" they


Ha-Olam Hab-bah; Ha-Olam Haz-zeh: The world to come

and the world that is.

"Do you bring us a message?" said one of the rabbis.

They were used to prophets, certainly, but none like this

one. "A message?"

"I do not know," said the prophet hoarsely. "I must rest.

I am hungry."

"Come. We will give you food and a place to sleep."

He could only eat a little of the rich food and the bed

with its straw-stuffed mattress was too soft for him. He was

not used to it.

He slept badly, shouting as he dreamed, and, outside the

room, the rabbis listened, but could understand little of what

he said.

Karl Glogauer stayed in the synagogue for several weeks.

He would spend most of his time reading in the library,

searching through the long scrolls for some answer to his

dilemma. The words of the Testaments, in many cases ca-

pable of a dozen interpretations, only confused him further.

There was nothing to grasp, nothing to tell him what had

gone wrong.

The rabbis kept their distance for the most part. They

had accepted him as a holy man. They were proud to have

him in their synagogue. They were sure that he was one of

the special chosen of God and they waited patiently for him

to speak to them.

But the prophet said little, muttering only to himself in

snatches of their own language and snatches of the incom-

prehensible language he often used, even when he addressed

them directly.

In Nazareth, the townsfolk talked of little else but the

mysterious prophet in the synagogue, but the rabbis would

not answer their questions. They would tell the people to go

about their business, that there were things they were not

yet meant to know. In this way, as priests had always done,

they avoided questions they could not answer while at the

same time appearing to have much more knowledge than

they actually possessed.

Then, one sabbath, he appeared in the public part of the

synagogue and took his place with the others who had come

to worship.

The man who was reading from the scroll on his left

stumbled over the words, glancing at the prophet from the

corner of his eye.

The prophet sat and listened, his expression remote.

The Chief Rabbi looked uncertainly at him, then signed

that the scroll should be passed to the prophet. This was

done hesitantly by a boy who placed the scroll into the

prophet's hands.

The prophet looked at the words for a long time and

then began to read. The prophet read without comprehend-

ing at first what he read. It was the book of Esaias.

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath

anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath

sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance

to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to

set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable

year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and gave it

again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all of

them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.

(Luke 4:18-20)


They followed him now, as he walked away from Nazareth

towards the Lake of Galilee. He was dressed in the white

linen robe they had given him and though they thought

he led them, they, in fact, drove him before them.

"He is our messiah," they said to those that inquired.

And there were already rumors of miracles.

When he saw the sick, he pitied them and tried to do

what he could because they expected something of him.

Many he could do nothing for, but others, obviously in

psychosomatic conditions, he could help. They believed in

his power more strongly than they believed in their sickness.

So he cured them.

When he came to Capernaum, some fifty people followed

him into the streets of the city. It was already known that

he was in some way associated with John the Baptist, who

enjoyed huge prestige in Galilee and had been declared a

true prophet by many Pharisees. Yet this man had a power

greater, in some ways, than John's. He was not the orator

that the Baptist was, but he had worked miracles.

Capernaum was a sprawling town beside the crystal lake

of Galilee, its houses separated by large market gardens.

Fishing boats were moored at the white quayside, as well

as trading ships that plied the lakeside towns. Though the

green hills came down from all sides to the lake, Capernaum

itself was built on flat ground, sheltered by the hills. It was

a quiet town and, like most others in Galilee, had a large

population of gentiles. Greek, Roman and Egyptian traders

walked its streets and many had made permanent homes

there. There was a prosperous middle-class of merchants,

artisans and ship-owners, as well as doctors, lawyers and

scholars, for Capernaum was on the borders of the provinces

of Galilee, Trachonitis and Syria and though a comparatively

small town was a useful junction for trade and travel.

The strange, mad prophet in his swirling linen robes,

followed by the heterogeneous crowd that was primarily com-

posed of poor folk but also could be seen to contain men

of some distinction, swept into Capernaum. The news spread

that this man really could foretell the future, that he had

already predicted the arrest of John by Herod Antipas and

soon after Herod had imprisoned the Baptist at Peraea. He

did not make the predictions in general terms, using vague

words the way other prophets did. He spoke of things that

were to happen in the near future and he spoke of them in


None knew his name. He was simply the prophet from

Nazareth, or the Nazarene. Some said he was a relative,

perhaps the son, of .a carpenter in Nazareth, but this could

be because the written words for "son of a carpenter" and

"magus" were almost the same and the confusion had come

about in that way. There was even a very faint rumor that

his name was Jesus. The name had been used once or

twice, but when they asked him if that was, indeed, his

name, he denied it or else, in his abstracted way, refused to

answer at all.

His actual preaching tended to lack the fire of John's.

This man spoke gently, rather vaguely, and smiled often.

He spoke of God in a strange way, too, and he appeared

to be connected, as John was, with the Essenes, for he

preached against the accumulation of personal wealth and

spoke of mankind as a brotherhood, as they did.

But it was the miracles that they watched for as he

was guided to the graceful synagogue of Capernaum. No

prophet before him had healed the sick and seemed to un-

derstand the troubles that people rarely spoke of. It was

his sympathy that they responded to, rather than the words

he spoke.

For the first time in his life, Karl Glogauer had forgotten

about Karl Glogauer. For the first time in his life he was

doing what he had always sought to do as a psychiatrist.

But it was not his life. He was bringing a myth to life

a generation before that myth would be born. He was com-

pleting a certain kind of psychic circuit. He was not chang-

ing history, but he was giving history more substance.

He could not bear to think that Jesus had been nothing

more than a myth. It was in his power to make Jesus a

physical reality rather than the creation of a process of


So he spoke in the synagogues and he spoke of a gentler

God than most of them had heard of, and where he could

remember them, he told them parables.

And gradually the need to justify what' he was doing

faded and his sense of identity grew increasingly more ten-

uous and was replaced by a different sense of identity,

where he gave greater and greater substance to the role he

had chosen. It was an archetypal role. It was a role to

appeal to a disciple of Jung. It was a r61e that went beyond

a mere imitation. It was a role that he must now play

out to the very last grand detail. Karl Glogauer had dis-

covered the reality he had been seeking.

And in the synagogue there was a man, which had a

spirit of an unclean devil, and cried out with a loud voice,

saying. Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou

Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know

thee who thou art; the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked

him, saying. Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And

when the devil had thrown him in the midst, he came out

of him, and hurt him not. And they were all amazed, and

spake among themselves, saying. What a word is this! for

with authority and power he commandeth the unclean spirits,

and they come out. And the fame of him went out into

every place of the country round about.

(Luke 4:33-37)

"Mass hallucination. Miracles, flying saucers, ghosts, it's

all the same," Monica had said.

"Very likely," he had replied. "But why did they see


"Because they wanted to."

"Why did they want to?"

"Because they were afraid."

"You think that's all there is to it?"

"Isn't it enough?"

When he left Capernaum for the first time, many more

people accompanied him. It had become impractical to stay

in the town, for the business of the town had been brought

almost to a standstill by the crowds that sought to see him

work his simple miracles.

He spoke to them in the spaces beyond the towns. He

talked with intelligent, literate men who appeared to have

something in common with him. Some of them were the

owners of fishing fleetsSimon, James and John among

them. Another was a doctor, another a civil servant who bad

first heard him speak in Capernaum.

"There must be twelve," he said to them one day. "There

must be a zodiac."

He was not careful in what he said. Many of his ideas

were strange. Many of the things he talked about were un-

familiar to them. Some Pharisees thought he blasphemed.

One day he met a man he recognized as an Essene from

the colony near Machaerus.

"John would speak with you," said the Essene.

"Is John not dead yet?" he asked the man.

"He is confined at Peraea. I would think Herod is too

frightened to kill him. He lets John walk about within

the walls and gardens of the palace, lets him speak with

his men, but John fears that Herod will find the courage

soon to have him stoned or decapitated. He needs your


"How can I help him? He is to die. There is no hope for


The Essene looked uncomprehendingly into the mad eyes

of the prophet.

"But, master, there is no one else who can help him."

"I have done all that he wished me to do," said the

prophet. "I have healed the sick and preached to the poor."

"I did not know he wished this. Now he needs help,

master. You could save his life."

The prophet had drawn the Essene away from the crowd.

"His life cannot be saved."

"But if it is not the unrighteous will prosper and the

Kingdom of Heaven will not be restored."

"His life cannot be saved."

"Is it God's will?"

"If I am God, then it is God's will."

Hopelessly, the Essene turned and began to walk away

from the crowd.

John the Baptist would have to die. Glogauer had no

wish to change history, only to strengthen it.

He moved on, with his following, through Galilee. He

had selected his twelve educated men, and the rest who

followed him were still primarily poor people. To them he

offered their only hope of fortune. Many were those who

had been ready to follow John against the Romans, but

now John was imprisoned. Perhaps this man would lead

them in revolt, to loot the riches of Jerusalem and Jericho

and Caesarea. Tired and hungry, their eyes glazed by the

burning sun, they followed the man in the white robe.

They needed to hope and they found reasons for their hope.

They saw him work greater miracles.

Once he preached to them from a boat, as was often

his custom, and as he walked back to the shore through the

shallows, it seemed to them that he walked over the water.

All through Galilee in the autumn they wandered, hear-

ing from everyone the news of John's beheading. Despair at

the Baptist's death turned to renewed hope in this new

prophet who had known him.

In Caesarea they were driven from the city by Roman

guards used to the wildmen with their prophecies who

roamed the country.

They were banned from other cities as the prophet's

fame grew. Not only the Roman authorities, but the Jewish

ones as well seemed unwilling to tolerate the new prophet

as they had tolerated John. The political climate was chang-


It became hard to find food. They lived on what they

could find, hiingerfng like starved animals.

He taught them how to pretend to eat and take their

minds off their hunger.

Karl Glogauer, witch-doctor, psychiatrist, hypnotist, mes-


Sometimes his conviction in his chosen r61e wavered and

those that followed him would be disturbed when he con-

tradicted himself. Often, now, they called him the name

they had heard, Jesus the Nazarene. Most of the time he

did not stop them from using the name, but at others he

became angry and cried a peculiar, guttural name.

"Karl Glogaueri Karl Glogauer!"

And they said. Behold, he speaks with the voice of Adonai.

"Call me not by that name!" he would shout, and they

would become disturbed and leave him by himself until his

anger had subsided.

When the weather changed and the winter came, they

went back to Capernaum, which had become a stronghold

of his followers.

In Capernaum he waited the winter through, making


Many of these prophecies concerned himself and the fate-,

of those that followed him.

Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no

man that he was Jesus the Christ. From that time forth

began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must

go unto Jerusalem,

chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again

the third day.

(Matthew 16:20-21)

They were watching television at her flat. Monica was

eating an apple. It was between six and seven on a warm

Sunday evening. Monica gestured at the screen with her

half-eaten apple.

"Look at that nonsense," she said. "You can't honestly tell

me it means anything to you."

The program was a religious one, about a pop-opera in

a Hampstead Church. The opera told the story of the cruci-


"Pop-groups in the pulpit," she said. "What a comedown."

He didn't reply. The program seemed obscene to him,

in an obscure way. He couldn't argue with her.

"God's corpse is really beginning to rot now," she jeered.

"Whew! The stinki"

"Turn it off, then," he said quietly.

"What's the pop-group called? The Maggots?"

"Very funny. I'll turn it off, shall I?"

"No, I want to watch. It's funny."

"Oh, turn it off!"

"Imitation of Christ!" she snorted. "It's a bloody carica-


A Negro singer, who was playing Christ and singing flat

to a banal accompaniment, began to drone out lifeless lyrics

about the brotherhood of man.

"If he sounded like that, no wonder they nailed him up,"

said Monica.

He reached forward and switched the picture off.

"I was enjoying it." She spoke with mock disappointment.

"It was a lovely swan-song."

Later, she said with a trace of affection that worried him,

"You old fogey. What a pity. You could have been John

--Wesley or Calvin or someone. You can't be a messiah these

days, not in your terms. There's nobody to listen."


The prophet was living in the house of a man called Simon,

though the prophet preferred to call him Peter. Simon was

grateful to the prophet because he had cured his wife of a

complaint which she had suffered from for some time. It had

been a mysterious complaint, but the prophet had cured her

almost effortlessly.

There were a great many strangers in Capernaum at that

time, many of them coming to see the prophet. Simon

warned the prophet that some were known agents of the

Romans or the Pharisees. The Pharisees had not, on the

whole, been antipathetic towards the prophet, though they

distrusted the talk of miracles that 'they heard. However, the

whole political atmosphere was disturbed and the Roman oc-

cupation troops, from Pilate, through his officers, down to

the troops, were tease, expecting an outbreak but unable to

see any tangible signs that one was coming.

Pilate himself hoped for trouble on a large scale. It would

prove to Tiberius that the emperor had been too lenient with

the Jews over the matter of the votive shields. Pilate would

be vindicated and his power over the Jews increased.. At

present he was on bad terms with all the Tetrarchs of the

provincesparticularly the unstable Herod Antipas who had

seemed at one time his only supporter. Aside from the

political situation, his own domestic situation was upset in

that his neurotic wife was having her nightmares again and

was demanding far more attention from him than he could

afford to give her.

There might be a possibility, he thought, of provoking an

incident, but he would have to be careful that Tiberius never

learnt of it. This new prophet might provide a focus, but so

far the man had done nothing against the laws of either the

Jews or the Romans. There was no law that forbade a man

to claim he was a messiah, as some said this one had done,

and he was hardly inciting the people to revoltrather the


Looking through the window of his chamber, with a view

of the minarets and spires of Jerusalem, Pilate considered

the information his spies had brought him.

.Soon after the festival that the Romans called Saturnalia,

the prophet and his followers left Capernaum again and be-

gan to travel through the country.

There were fewer miracles now that the hot weather had

passed, but his prophecies were eagerly asked. He warned

them of all the mistakes that would be made in the future,

and of all the crimes that would be committed in his name.

Through Galilee he wandered, and through Samaria, fol-

lowing the good Roman roads towards Jerusalem.

The time of the Passover was coming close now.

In Jerusalem, the Roman officials discussed the coming

festival. It was always a time of the worst disturbances.

There had been riots before during the Feast of the Pass-

over, and doubtless there would be trouble of some kind this

year, too.

Pilate spoke to the Pharisees, asking for their cooperation.

The Pharisees said they would do what they could, but they

could not help it if the people acted foolishly.

Scowling, Pilate dismissed them.

His agents brought him reports from all over the territory.

Some of the reports mentioned the new prophet, but said

that he was harmless.

Pilate thought privately that he might be harmless now,

but if he reached Jerusalem during the Passover, he might

not be so harmless.

Two weeks before the Feast of the Passover, the prophet

reached the town of Bethany near Jerusalem. Some of his

Galilean followers had friends in Bethany and these friends

were more than willing to shelter the man they bad heard

of from other pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem and the

Great Temple.

The reason they had come to Bethany was that the

prophet had become disturbed at the number of the people

following him.

"There are too many," he had said to Simon. "Too many,


Glogauer's face was haggard now. His eyes were set deeper

into their sockets and he said little.

Sometimes he would look around him vaguely, as if unsure

where he was.

News came to the house in Bethany that Roman agents

had been making inquiries about him. It did not seem to

disturb him. On the contrary, he nodded thoughtfully, as if


Once he walked with two of his followers across country

to look at Jerusalem. The bright yellow walls of the city

looked splendid in the afternoon light. The towers and tall

buildings, many of them decorated in mosaic reds, blues and

yellows, could be seen from several miles away.

The prophet turned back towards Bethany.

"When shall we go into Jerusalem?" one of his followers

asked him.

"Not yet," said Glogauer. His shoulders were hunched

and he grasped his chest with his arms and hands as if cold.

Two days before the Feast of the Passover in Jerusalem,

the prophet took his men towards the Mount of Olives and

a suburb of Jerusalem that was built on its side and called


"Get me a donkey," he told them. "A colt. I must fulfill

the prophecy now."

"Then all will know you are the Messiah," said Andrew.


Glogauer sighed. He felt afraid again, but this time it was

not physical fear. It was the fear of an .actor who was about

to make his final, most dramatic scene and who was not sure

he could do it well.

There was cold sweat on Glogauer's upper lip. He wiped

it off.

In the poor light he peered at the men around him. He

was still uncertain of some of their names. He was not in-

terested in their names, particularly, only in their number.

There were ten here. The other two were looldng for the


They stood on the grassy slope of the Mount of Olives,

looking towards Jerusalem and the great Temple which lay

below. There was a light, warm breeze blowing.

"Judas?" said Glogauer inquiringly.

There was one called Judas.

"Yes, master," he said. He was tall and good looking, with

curly red hair and neurotic intelligent eyes. Glogauer be-

lieved he was an epileptic.

Glogauer looked thoughtfully at Judas Iscariot. "I will

want you to help me later," be said, "when we have entered


"How, master?"

"You must take a message to the Romans."

"The Romans?" Iscariot looked troubled. "Why?"

"It must be the Romans. It can't be the Jewsthey would

use a stake or an axe. I'll tell you more when the time


The sky was dark now, and the stars were out over the

Mount of Olives. It had become cold. Glogauer shivered.

Rejoice greatly 0 daughter of Zion,

Shout, 0 daughter of Jerusalem:

Behold, thy King cometh unto thee!

He is just and having salvation;

Lowly and riding upon an ass,

And upon a colt, the foal of an ass.

(Zechariah 9:9)

"Osha'na! Osha'na! Oshc/na!"

As Glogauer rode the donkey into the city, his followers

ran ahead, throwing down palm branches. On both sides of

the street were crowds, forewarned by the followers of his


Now the new prophet could be seen to be fulfilling the

prophecies of the ancient prophets and many believed that

he had come to lead them against the Romans. Even now,

possibly, he was on his way to Pilate's house to confront the


"Osha'na! Osha'na!"

Glogauer looked around distractedly. The back of the don-

key, though softened by the coats of his followers, was un-

comfortable. He swayed and clung to the beast's mane. He

heard the words, but could not make them out clearly.

"Osha'na! Osha'na!"

It sounded like "hosanna" at first, before he realized that

they were shouting the Aramaic for "Free us."

"Free us! Free usi"

John had planned to rise in arms against the Romans this

Passover. Many had expected to take part in the rebellion.

They believed that he was taking John's place as a rebel


"No," he muttered at them as he looked around at their

expectant faces. "No, I am the messiah. I cannot free you.

I can't. . . ."

They did not hear him above their own shouts.

Karl Glogauer entered Christ. Christ entered Jerusalem.

The story was approaching its climax.


It was not in the story. He could not help them.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray

me. Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of

whom he spake. Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one

of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. Simon Peter therefore

beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of

whom he spake. He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto

him, Lord, who is it? Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I

shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had

dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of

Simon. And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said

Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly. -

(John 13:21-27)

Judas Iscariot frowned with some uncertainty as he left

the room and went out into the crowded street, making his

way towards the governor's palace. Doubtless he was to per-

form a part in a plan to deceive the Romans and have the

people rise up in Jesus' defense, but he thought the scheme

foolhardy. The mood amongst the jostling men, women and

children in the streets was tense. Many more Roman soldiers ~

than usual patrolled the city.

Pilate was a stout man. His face was self-indulgent and

his eyes were hard and shallow. He looked disdainfully at the


"We do not pay informers whose information is proved to

be false," be warned.

"I do not seek money, lord,'* said Judas, feigning the

ingratiating manner that the Romans seemed to expect of the

Jews. "I am a loyal subject of the Emperor."

"Who is this rebel?"

"Jesus of Nazareth, lord. He entered the city today . . ."

"I know. I saw him. But I heard he preached of peace

and obeying the law."

"To deceive you, lord."

Pilate frowned. It was likely. It smacked of the kind of

deceit he had grown to anticipate in these soft-spoken people.

"Have you proof?"

"I am one of his lieutenants, lord. I will testify to his ~


Pilate pursed his heavy lips. He could not afford to offend

the Pharisees at this moment. They had given him enough

trouble. Caiaphas, in particular, would be quick to cry "in-

justice" if he arrested the man.

"He claims to be the rightful king of the Jews, the descen-

dant of David," said Judas, repeating what his master had

told him to say.

"Does he?" Pilate looked thoughtfully out of the window.

"As for the Pharisees, lord . . ."

"What of them?"

"The Pharisees distrust him. They would see him dead. He

speaks against them."

Pilate nodded. His eyes were hooded as he considered this

information. The Pharisees might hate the madman, but they

would be quick to make political capital out of his arrest.

"The Pharisees want him arrested," Judas continued. "The

people flock to listen to the prophet and today many of them

rioted in the Temple in his name."

"Is this true?"

"It is true, lord." It was true. Some half-a-dozen people

had attacked the money-changers in the Temple and tried to

rob them. When they had been arrested, they had said they

had been carrying out the will of the Nazarene.

"I cannot make the arrest," Pilate said musingly. The sit-

uation in Jerusalem was already dangerous, but if they were

to arrest this "king," they might find that they precipitated

a revolt. Tiberius would blame him, not the Jews. The

Pharisees must be won over. They must make the arrest.

"Wait here," he said to Judas. "I will send a message to


And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane:

and he saith to his disciples. Sit ye here, while I shall pray.

And he taketh with him Peter and James and John, and be-

gan to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy; And saith unto

them. My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death: tarry ye

here, and watch. >

(Mark 14:32-34)

Glogauer could see the mob approaching now. For the

_firsttime since Nazareth he felt physically weak and ex-

hausted. Tfiev were going to kill him. He had to die; he ac-

cepted that, buil he was afraid of the pain that was to come.

He sat down oo.the ground of the hillside, watching the

torches as they came closer.

"The ideal of martyrdom only ever existed in the minds of

a few ascetics," Monica had said. "Otherwise it was morbid

masochism, an easy way to forgo ordinary responsibility, a

method of keeping repressed people under control. . . ."

"It isn't as simple as that. . . ."

"It is, Kari."

He could show Monica now. His regret was that she was

unlikely ever to know. He had meant to write everything

down and put it into the time machine and hope that it

would be recovered. It was strange. He was not a religious

man in the usual sense. He was an agnostic. It was not con-

viction that had led him to defend religion against Monica's

cynical contempt for it; it was rather lack of conviction in

the ideal in. which she had set her own faith, the ideal of

science as a solver of all problems. He could not share her

faith and there was nothing else but religion, though he could

not believe in the kind of God of Christianity. The God seen

as a mystical force of the mysteries of Christianity and other

great religions had not been personal enough for him. His

rational, mind had told him that God did not exist in any

personal form. His unconscious had told him that faith in

science was not enough.

"Science is basically opposed to religion," Monica had

once said harshly. "No matter how many Jesuits get together

and rationalize their views of science, the fact remains that

religion cannot accept the fundamental attitudes of science

and it is implicit to science to attack the fundamental princi-

ples of religion. The only area in which there is no difference

and need be no war is in the ultimate assumption. One may

or may not assume there is a supernatural being called God.

But as soon as one begins to defend one's assumption, there

must be strife."

"You're talking about organized religion. . . ."

"I'm talking about religion as opposed to a belief. Who

needs the ritual of religion when we have the far superior

ritual of science to replace it? Religion is a reasonable sub-

stitute for knowledge. But there is no longer any need for

substitutes, Karl. Science offers a sounder basis on whjch_,to

formulate systems of thought and ethics. We don't need the '"

carrot of heaven and the big stick of hell any more when

science can show the consequences of actions and men can

judge easily for themselves whether those actions are right or


"I can't accept it."

"That's because you're sick. I'm sick, too, but at least I

can see the promise of health"

"I can only see the threat of death. . . ."

As they had agreed, Judas kissed him on the cheek and

the mixed force of Temple guards and Roman soldiers sur-

rounded him.

To the Romans he said, with some difficulty, "I am the

King of the Jews." To the Pharisees' servants be said: "I am

the messiah who has come to destroy your masters." Now

he was committed and the final ritual was to begin.

It was an untidy trial, an arbitrary mixture of Roman and

Jewish law which did not altogether satisfy anyone. The ob-

ject was accomplished after several conferences between

Pontius Pilate and Caiaphas and three attempts to bend and

merge their separate legal systems in order to fit the ex-

pediencies of the situation. Both needed a scapegoat for their

different purposes and so at last the result was achieved and

the madman convicted, on the one hand of rebellion against

Rome and on the other of heresy.

A peculiar feature of the trial was that the witnesses were

all followers of the man and yet had seemed eager to see

him convicted.

The Pharisees agreed that the Roman method of execu-

tion would fit the time and the situation best in this case

and it was decided to crucify him. The man had prestige,

however, so that it would be necessary to use some of the

tried Roman methods of humiliation in order to make him

into a pathetic and ludicrous figure in the eyes of the pil-

grims. Pilate assured the Pharisees that he would see to it,

but he made sure that they signed documents that gave their

approval to his actions.

And. the soldiers led him away into the hall, called Prae-

torium; anA-lhey .call together the whole band. And they

clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and

put it about his head. And began to salute him. Hail, King

of the Jews! And they smote him on the head with a reed,

and did spit upon him, and bowing their knees worshipped

him. And when they had mocked him, they took off the

purple from him, and put his own clothes on him, and led

him out to crucify him.

(Mark 15:16-20)

His brain was clouded now, by pain and by the ritual of

humiliation; by his having completely given himself up to his


He was too weak to bear the heavy wooden cross and he

walked behind it as it was dragged towards Golgotha by a

Cyrenian whom the Romans had press-gauged for the pur-


As he staggered through the crowded, silent streets,

watched by those who had thought he would lead them

against the Roman overlords, his eyes filled with tears so that

his sight was blurred and he occasionally staggered off the

road and was nudged back onto it by one of the Roman


"You are too emotional, Karl. Why don't you use that

brain of yours and pull yourself together? . . ."

He remembered the words, but it was difficult to remem-

ber who had said them or who Karl was.

The road that led up the side of the hill was stony and

he slipped sometimes, remembering another hill he had

climbed long ago. It seemed to him that he had been a child,

but the memory merged with others and it was impossible

to tell.

He was breathing heavily and with some difficulty. The

pain of the thorns in his head was barely felt, but his whole

body seemed to throb in unison with his heartbeat. It was

.like a drum.

-It was evening. The sun was setting. He fell on his face,

cutting his head on a sharp stone, just as he reached the top

of the hill. He fainted.

And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is,

being interpreted. The place of a skull. And they gave him

to drink-wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not..

(Mark 15:22-23)

He knocked the cup aside. The soldier shrugged and

reached out for one of his arms. Another soldier already

held the other arm.

As he recovered consciousness Glogauer began to tremble

violently. He felt the pain intensely as the ropes bit into the

flesh of his wrists and anides. He struggled.

He felt something cold placed against his palm. Although

it only covered a small area in the center of his hand it

seemed very heavy. He heard a sound that also was in

rhythm with his heartbeats. He turned his head to look at the


The large iron peg was being driven into his hand by a

soldier swinging a mallet as he lay on the cross which was at

this moment horizontal on the ground. He watched, wonder-

ing why there was no pain. The soldier swung the mallet

higher as the peg met the resistance of the wood. Twice he

missed the peg and struck Glogauer's fingers.

Glogauer looked to the other side and saw that the second

soldier was also hammering in a peg. Evidently he missed

the peg a great many times because the fingers of the hand

were bloody and crushed.

The first soldier finished hammering in his peg and tamed

his attention to the feet. Glogauer felt the iron slide through

his flesh, heard it hammered home.

Using a pulley, they began to haul the cross into a verti-

cal position. Glogauer noticed that he was alone. There were

no others being crucified that day.

He got a clear view of the lights of Jerusalem below him.

There was still a little light in the sky but not much. Soon

it would be completely dark. There was a small crowd look-

ing on. One of the women reminded him of Monica. He

called to her.


But his voice was cracked and the word was a whisper.

The woman did not look up.

He felt his body dragging at the nails which supported it.

He thought he felt a twinge of pain in his left hand. He

seemed to be bleeding very heavily.

It was odd, he reflected, that it should be him hanging

here. He supposed that it was the event he had originally

<~-to witness. There was little doubt, really. Everything

had gone perfectly.

The pain in his left hand increased.

He glanced down at the Roman guards who were playing

dice at the foot of his cross. They seemed absorbed in their

game. He could not see the markings of the dice from this


He sighed. The movement of his chest seemed to throw

extra strain on his hands. The pain was quite bad now. He

winced and tried somehow to ease himself back against the


: The pain began to spread through his body. He gritted his

teeth. It was dreadful. He gasped and shouted. He writhed.

There was no longer any light in the sky. Heavy clouds

obscured stars and moon.

From below came whispered voices.

"Let me down," he called. "Oh, please let me down!"

The pain filled him. He slumped forward, but nobody

released him.

A little while later he raised his head. The movement

caused a return of the agony and again he began to writhe

on the cross.

"Let me down. Please. Please stop it!"

Every part of his flesh, every muscle and tendon and bone

of him, was filled with an almost impossible degree of pain.

He knew he would not survive until the next day as he

had thought he might. He had not realized the extent of his


And at the ninth hour lesus cried with a loud voice, say-

ing, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being inter-

preted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

(Mark 15:34)

Glogauer coughed. It was a dry, barely heard sound. The

soldiers below the cross heard it because the night was now

so quiet.

"It's funny," one said. "Yesterday they were worshiping

him. Today they seemed to want us to kill himeven the

ones who were closest to him."

"I'll be glad when we get out of this country," said an-


, .:-- - T~~"-~

He heard Monica's voice again. "It's weakness and fear,

Karl, that's driven you to this. Martyrdom is a conceit. Can't

you see that?"

Weakness and fear.

He coughed once more and the pain returned, but it was

duller now.

Just before he died he began to talk again, muttering the

words until his breath was gotie. "It's a lie. It's a lie. It's a


Later, after his body was stolen by the servants of some

doctors who believed it to have special properties, there were

rumors that he had not died. But the corpse was already

rotting in the doctors' dissecting rooms and would soon be

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