Once, there was a young man who walked into the world. His garments the black of ash and the red of blood, and he looked out through eyes unclouded. Taking up his staff, he journeyed forth, seeking.
He came upon a group of people, who looked to the East and saw the Jackal of the Moon, a beast with hate in its eyes and hunger in its belly, that would devour the world. At first the young man did not wish to see the Jackal, for he had known much suffering and destruction in his life, but in the end he Saw. For he would not lie to himself.
And the people said, “woe, awaken world, for the Jackal is upon us now. He wags his tail as if he were a friend, but his fangs close upon our throats! How shall we fight the Jackel of the Moon?”
And some cried, “Lo! We must look to the Sun of the East, whose cross we kneel before. Only the Sun can save us. Let us return to the Sun, and drive away the Jackal of the Moon, and all other things with it’s holy light!”
But the young man, with eyes unclouded, saw that to embrace the Sun as the Jackal did the Moon, would be to make the world no different, for the Moon was a reflection of the Sun. So he said, “No, for there are many paths in this world. Do not banish them all simply to remove one. Do not become the thing you fear in the sake of destroying the Jackal of the Moon.”
But anger was directed towards the young man. “How dare you!” They cried, “There is only one way, it is the way of the Sun!” And no matter how the young man protested, or angered the crowd, they would not listen. So the young man left them.
The young man then journeyed on, for he had seen others as he had traveled with those that spoke of the Jackal of the Moon. And he followed some of these others, and came to another road, made of Those From Many Paths. And he walked with them and said to himself, “Here are those who shall accept me, and recognize my wisdom, which was hard earned, even as I recognize theirs in equal turn. For they come from Many Paths, and say mine will be welcome.” And he was unaware of the carts and bags they carried, thinking them like all others, filled with things to make new things. As he had done before he set out with what had filled his own bags.
But as the young man traveled, and grew older and wiser, he came to see that all was not as it appeared. “Beware the Sun!” They cried, “For it will burn away all other paths if left unchecked!”
“Yes,” the young man said, “Beware the Sun. But also beware the Jackal of the Moon, for he follows the path of the Sun as well. Do not let the light of the Sun blind you.”
“Lies,” spoke loud voices in Those From Many Paths, “Hate! How dare you not attack the Sun as we do! Do not hate upon the Jackal, for he is weak before the Sun!” But the young man saw with eyes unclouded, that while they saw the Jackal’s wagging tail, they did not see it’s hungry fangs eager for their blood.
But the young man knew the value of Hate, even if it was not what made him speak, but Love. So he walked with them more, but his eyes were unclouded and he began to see that Those From Many Paths were not as embracing as he thought they had been. And he saw that their carts and bags were not filled with materials to make new things, but filled with things carved in heavy stone, that they carried upon them and would not set down. And these stones bore words with meanings hidden from those who carried them. And they said, “Our paths are from these stones.”
But the words on the stones were new and fresh, and had not been long with the stones. And he saw, with eyes unclouded, the origins of the words on the stones, and he said, “But these are the Ideals of the Sun, which you so hate? Why do you carve them on your stones? Do not the stones speak for themselves. There is older writing on these stones, which you have covered up.”
But they grew angry with him, and sought to beat him with their stones, as they had beaten others with their stones until the others had left or complied with the new words on the old stones. And they told him his path was a bad one, for it did not agree with the new writing on the old stones.
At long last, the young man who had aged, grew weary and said. “Nay, I shall not change my path. I shall forge a new one. I came to you in kinship, with respect and wisdom, to gain respect and wisdom. I came with the flame of my mind upon my tongue, to help you and to be helped by you. But now I see that it cannot be. For you have created a dogma of your new words on the old stones, and will consider nothing else valid. So I will go, and make a path, and see if others will come with me. But I will not bend my path, nor deny it, simply because of new words on old stones. I will listen to the old words on old stones, and listen to the stars and elements, and the darkness in the hearts of man. This is my path, and I shall not cast out others, as you have. All are welcome on my path that you shun. So I will walk, and the hedge witches, the wizards, the sorcerers, the warlocks, the witches of kitchens and hearths and gardens the Goths, those who take from everywhere, and those who take only from one place, may walk with me and know they are welcome, if they can respect and share the validity of all paths, without the dogma of new words on old stones.”
And so the man, having grown, began his path once more.