LAWRENCE Brown wrote that one characteristic Western man does not notice about himself is that, for him, an infinite progression is natural. A child will ask why is there a fire, the adult will answer because there is a match, the child will ask why is there a match, the adult may tell him about supply and demand or about how the mechanics of a match work.

Then, of course, "Why do they work that way?"

Everybody else has always come up with an answer to shut the kids up, like hushpuppies at a fry:

"IT is the Will of the gods,"

"God moves in mysterious ways, his wonders to perform."

"Aristotle said so."

"Mommy Professor thinks so."

"It is the Modern Point of View."

It is the simple questions this is used on. Which is why only the West could have come up with supply and demand or Newtonian theory. Which is why Orwell said in his book 1984 that "Freedom is the right to say that two plus two is four."

Stagnant societies NEVER discuss basics. They have one of the few fat men in their tribe sitting around teaching the "Basics." Basic Truths were Absolem's occupation, and the reason he was one of the few fat guys around.

But of course some young people would wonder if Absolem was so hot. So Absolem decided it was the gods he represented, not just himself. Some kids still contradicted old Ab, so Absolem gave them the benefit of his long memory. He said he remembered a person who had contradicted the Will of the Gods and had soon fallen off a cliff.

The invention of Heresy was the clincher. In Africa a belief in Hell is replacing the older belief that, if you treated someone wrong, his ghost would come for you after he died,, but either one is the basis of a major occupation. In 1900 the few people who are fat in Africa today are priests of the old black man's faith or the new white man's faith.

Today, about the ONLY fat people in Communist Angola are commissars. They don't depend on the next world; They don't even bother to explain their faith. They have decided to drop all the next-world faith and go straight into Heresy.

Heresy is asking about basics, like the Mantra or like supply and demand or about heredity. Heresy is prohibiting someone from saying that two plus two is four.