Derangements, Chapter 70, The Search for Beauty in Islam: A Conference of the Books

The books absorb the hours of the night, and the resonance of words expends the mind.  This brain-mass has drowned in emotions more onerous than its comprehensions, and this heart has chased after longings that have always left it deserted.  This is a mind at war with itself, with its time, and place.  It aches to become unbounded in a paradise of love and poetry, but ends up banished to the wastelands of reality.  It aches to hover in the heavens and intoxicate itself with rivers of beauty, but instead it is firmly implanted in the deserts of the earth.  This is a mind that never had a childhood, adolescence, or adulthood, nor will it age – it has been simply decomposing since its birth.  This mind has been born a Muslim, and with this came the truth of its fate—it is fated to watch the beauty of its tradition crumble, and the poetry of its civilization turn into profanity. This mind was born of a civilization that is thoroughly penetrated - punished, invaded, vanquished, and subjugated.  A civilization whose passions have become neurotic fears – a civilization that contests its own existence. 


As the hours progress, tired and drained, I feel that this body has endured to its capacity.  My eyes can no longer make out the words as my eyelids insist on drawing the curtains on night.  If only this body could understand that when I leave the Conference I dwell in derangements and mania, it would never surrender me.  If only this body would realize what I see in my sleep, it would leave me in my mind’s company.  But every night I am confronted with the ultimatum of sleep, and when I resist, this body shuts down and leaves, and I am forced to confront the dreams.  Nightmares are engagements at the extreme, and dreams are manipulations rooted in reality.  But I can no longer differentiate between the two when I sleep.  When awake I am salvaged and stabilized by the Conference, when asleep I teeter on the edge of unmitigated lunacy. 


As I slipped in and out of consciousness at my desk, I finally surrendered and crawled to my bed.  In a flash I saw Muslims rushing in long corridors, and meeting behind closed doors.  They all gathered in an enormous lobby in the Biltmore Hotel, and everyone was yelling “brother, sister, brother, sister,” everywhere I turned.  Each one took the podium and extolled and thanked the other for being a leader and servant of the movement, and spoke at length about the importance of grassroots efforts, and Islam as a revolution against injustice and poverty wherever it may be.  Every CEO of a company, medical doctor, politician, and non-Muslim in attendance was given an award for leading Muslims right into their grand destiny. 


Suddenly, the Pokemans invaded the Biltmore Hotel, firing laser beams, maiming and burning everything in sight.  In response, the Council of the Highest Learned and Enlightened Muslim Masters of the Universe thoroughly condemned the attack, and met to deliberate over the extent of the Zionist conspiracy.   In another part of the land, the Israeli army was razing houses to the ground, and killing soccer players to save the free world from the terror of bombs.  But the Council of the Highest Learned and Enlightened Muslim Masters of the Universe announced that, after engaging in a thorough review of the balance of dangers, it decided to confront the Pokeman evil.  They issued volleys of fatwas that incinerated the Pokeman, and thoroughly defeated the Zionist conspiracy against Islam. 


At that moment, the Buddha statues met in the heart of the night and conspired to sow the seeds for a great big civil strife.  They decided to brainwash Muslims into spilling their brothers’ blood, and to starve millions of refugees.  But the undeniable power of jihad rose again, and a vicious battle defeated the infidel statues and scattered their remains across the lands. 


It was then that we noticed that women were flocking to the graveyards, where their lure and seductions were raising the dead.  But the council met again, and decided that since women are already dead in our consciousness, the dead should be banned from visiting the dead.  However, before we could rest, the news arrived urgently.  In a mosque in Toledo, the Zionists have conspired to tear down the curtains separating the women, and zombie-eyed females emerged from their coffins in a stampede firing seductions at unsuspecting men.  For this, the Council decided to re-convene, but it could not agree on whether the Biltmore or the Bonaventure was a better place to meet. 


The meeting on the fate of the Aqsa Mosque had to be postponed as well because we uncovered that the direction of the qiblah was most definitely wrong.  But the qiblah meeting, itself, had to be postponed as well because Sharon had threatened to bring pigs to the Holy Mosque.  After meeting in Washington D.C., the Council uncovered that Sharon’s plot was far more sinister and profound than we had imagined previously.  He had conspired to feed lard to every Muslim cow, and the Council, thank God, dealt with the problem by issuing a harshly worded condemnation of the anti-Islamic conspiracies.  To thoroughly neutralize all the dangers, we decided to issue a new book on halal meat.


Before we could catch our breath, Indian troops invaded a village in Kashmir and raped every Muslim woman they could find.  But we consoled ourselves because we responded by divorcing heretics from their wives.  Tired and worn out, we decided to relax in a massive convention that will serve spicy Tikka and nice Biryani.  We need to eat well and sleep for tomorrow, we have a long and arduous day confronting the world conspiracies of Pinkie and the Brain.


At that point I awake, and I pray in gratitude that this was nothing but my dreamt up derangements.