Once I was Hunwulf, the Wanderer. I cannot explain my knowledge of
this fact by any occult or esoteric means, nor shall I try. A man
remembers his past life; I remember my past _lives_. Just as a
normal individual recalls the shapes that ...
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The Garden of Fear

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Once I was Hunwulf, the Wanderer. I cannot explain my knowledge of
this fact by any occult or esoteric means, nor shall I try. A man
remembers his past life; I remember my past _lives_. Just as a
normal individual recalls the shapes that were him in childhood,
boyhood and youth, so I recall the shapes that have been James
Allison in forgotten ages. Why this memory is mine I cannot say,
any more than I can explain the myriad other phenomena of nature
which daily confront me and every other mortal. But as I lie
waiting for death to free me from my long disease, I see with a
clear, sure sight the grand panorama of lives that trail out behind
me. I see the men who have been me, and I see the beasts that have
been me.

For my memory does not end at the coming of Man. How could it, when
the beast so shades into Man that there is no clearly divided line
to mark the boundaries of bestiality? At this instant I see a dim
twilight vista, among the gigantic trees of a primordial forest
that never knew the tread of a leather-shod foot. I see a vast,
shaggy, shambling bulk that lumbers clumsily yet swiftly, sometimes
upright, sometimes on all fours. He delves under rotten logs for
grubs and insects, and his small ears twitch continually. He lifts
his head and bares yellow fangs. He is primordial, bestial,
anthropoid; yet I recognize his kinship with the entity now called
James Allison. Kinship? Say rather oneness. I am he; he is I. My
flesh is soft and white and hairless; his is dark and tough and
shaggy. Yet we were one, and already in his feeble, shadowed brain
are beginning to stir and tingle the man-thoughts and the man
dreams, crude, chaotic, fleeting, yet the basis for all the high
and lofty visions men have dreamed in all the following ages.

Nor does my knowledge cease there. It goes back, back, down
immemorial vistas I dare not follow, to abysses too dark and awful
for the human mind to plumb. Yet even there I am aware of my
identity, my individuality. I tell you the individual is never
lost, neither in the black pit from which we once crawled, blind,
squalling and noisome, or in that eventual Nirvana in which we
shall one day sink--which I have glimpsed afar off, shining as a
blue twilight lake among the mountains of the stars.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940013745407
  • Publisher: WDS Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/13/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 23 KB

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