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become evil. For while competition can and should be the attempt to surpass others in value, thereby bringing about increase of good rather than destruction; self-defence, on the contrary (which is a frequent method of evading competition between classes, nations and individuals and even sexes), not only presupposes the threat of destruction, but involves the use of it; all the talk about the rules of the game, gentlemanly warfare, even humanely waged warfare, merely accentuating, in the attempt to mask, the fact that war intends to damage, ruin, humiliate, or coerce a set of people who are equally bent on damaging, ruining, humiliating, and coercing us. In this sense nothing is truer than that once you have got or made an Adversary, the Adversary in question becomes Satan; becomes so in reality and deed, more and more with every additional hour of war. Only we should remember (if such remembering during war-time were not as impossible as living head downwards !) that by the nature of the case there are always two Adversaries, each Adversary to the other; and consequently necessarily two Satans. Two sets of people, alas, employed on Satan's business of wasting human wealth and life and human virtue. And also two sets of people each feeling, and feeling sure, that the other is Satan. That is a very horrible and horribly preposterous, but alas, very natural, inevitable, state of affairs. And one of the worst things about this bad business of war is that when each nation thinks its Adversary (or its Adversary's figure-head, Kaiser, Admiral Tirpitz, Tsar, M. Poincare, Mr. Lloyd-George, or even poor Sir Edward Grey!) is Satan, that nation in so far forgets that its essential and permanent Adversary is Satan himself; forgets the follies, abuses, and manifold omissions and commissions with which its welfare and its progress are threatened from within. For Satan, my dear brethren, dwelleth within the innermost heart (or shall we say belly or brain ?) of every nation; and that accounts, perhaps, for his anxiety to turn every warring nation's attention away from its own internal affairs, and for the trouble he is at to make it seek the Principle of Evil in an Adversary outside itself. But as to me, my political creed daily narrows itself more and more to a single article, viz. Satan is the Adversary,

And whensoever, in small things or in large, that dictum gets stood on its head, becoming "the Adversary is Satan," then, in public relations as in private, and for whatever time, long or short, there is either a hecatomb of human victims, or a censer-full of blinding, stinking, nonsense; or, strange and sad to tell, maybe a grain or two of sweet and precious human virtue offered on Evil's altar. IV WHY NOT HAVE MENTIONED GOD? One point more. When Peace shall have restored the world's normal religious intolerance, critics different from those of to-day may take umbrage at another heterodoxy of my drama. Why have omitted decently to put as vis-a-vis to my odious Satan some God, such as comforts Mr. Wells' Bishop and Mr. Wells' self: a Power making for goodness, and adorably irresponsible for the world's evil, moreover pleasantly personal, a moral captain, or at all events, shall we say? a captain of moral industry. My answer is: that while recognizing the grandeur of an old-fashioned, inscrutable Creator of All things, I find no use for a Divinity as helplessly well meaning as ourselves. I know the power of goodness and of wisdom, power not with a capital P, but with real efficacy; power not making for goodness, but power, transmuting power, of goodness; and therefore of Goodness' other aspect, Wisdom. I have seen and loved and reverenced that power of goodness and wisdom, been comforted thereby, and hoped in it. But I have recognized it in Man; or rather in men, or rather in men and women; or rather in moments, sides, and, thank heaven ! in deeds, thoughts and works, of individual men and women. It is this power of goodness and wisdom which I see perpetually whittling away at the Kingdom of Satan. It is, as I have made Satan remark, not God, but Man and Man's wife Woman, who have rescued some of the precious seed scattered even as by the Sower in the Gospel; and made the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil strike root and rise and spread, very much to the detriment of Hell's foundations and strongholds. That knowledge of good and evil should be set in mankind's poor little garden, and not in the paradisepark of any divinity, is surely evident, since good and evil is a distinction essential to mankind's feelings, but not, so far as one can judge, of equal interest to the universe as a whole, whereof Man and his feelings are such a microscopic and ephemeral, though to Man himself legitimately supreme, portion. That we should all have enjoyed the acquaintance of a Being, especially an immortal, godlike Being, made up of absolutely nothing but what we deem goodness and wisdom, is natural; it is on a par with our general craving for more of anything desirable, with our abhorrence of interruption, and of tiresome discrimination, and disappointment, and short commons of all kinds. It is on a par with the secret hope, each of us cherishes, of finding a teacher solely and always in the right, a friend entirely devoted, a lover eternally faithful. It is natural we should wish for all such perfect fulfilment of our desires, but natural just because it is not to be had for the wishing. Let us by all means make ourselves such idols of the hearts' desire; Jesus, or his divine Mother, or Buddha; or whatever other name these Consolers bear. But let us recognize them, like their less ambiguous equivalents given by architecture, music and poetry, to be of Man's own holy making. And recognize at the same time that Wisdom and Goodness are qualities, however scanty and however alloyed, in men and women, there to be benefited by, loved and wondered at; and above all reverently but clearly discriminated from whatever, in those same men and women, is not wisdom and goodness, but such unclearness of mind, narrowness of sympathy and unsteadiness of nerves as Satan goes on employing for our discomfiture. That—I mean thinking in this way—is why, while subordinating the Power which spoils and wastes to the Creative All, whom Man calls God or Nature, I have been able to set opposite to my cruel amateur of hecatombs of virtue no "Power of Goodness "; but only plain men and women, with whatsoever goodness and wisdom, which means power for their own and others' happiness and betterment, they may contain, like veins of precious metal, in their obscure and earthly composition. Christmas, 1917; Easter, 1919. THE PRESENT MOMENT

The Muse (loquitur). "The present moment is eminently propitious. . . . Mankind has attained amazing control over Science's means without an inkling of Science's discipline and aims. Twentieth-century men appear to be slum-andoffice savages retaining the worship of all the good old tribal fetishes and racy obscene emblems . . . under newfangled and decent names; yet wielding appliances which, without enlarging mind or heart, abolish space and multiply all brutish powers a thousandfold." It would be consonant with the mental habits of Clio, and of the sociological philosophers whom that Muse has admitted to her canteen of anecdotes, rhetoric and moralizings, to look out for a single cause responsible for this war, in other words someone or something to slang for it. And many of us would, like H. G. Wells, have fallen foul of our own unworthy days, if German militarism had not offered itself as an even more handy scapegoat. I want it to be understood that the War, and its witch-hunt for Responsibilities, has checked in me the habit of relieving discomfort by fault-finding. And particularly of finding fault with our own, heaven knows, sufficiently punished times, which, for all their shortcomings, are on the whole no worse than preceding ones, let alone that preceding ones begot them, begotten in their turn by other wretchednesses, an endless series of generations like that of the Patriarchs. Having thus dissociated myself from Clio's habitual search for Historical Responsibilities, I wish to express my entire agreement in all she says about our times being propitious for Satan's Gala Performance; more by token that I have gone out of my way to make her say it. Not a link of " Guilt " is what connects the two; but a link of common characteristics, due to common origins, and helping us to understand the war by the peace which preceded it. For to expose life and limbs, affections and security, in the international muddles of High Personages, financial or bureaucratic, is after all but the catastrophic equivalent of spending one's days in crowded, unwholesome and hideous places, doing fatiguing, monotonous work, with only betting, cinemas, a yearly visit to Blackpool, the daily pub and weekly chapel for spiritual refreshment. And the war's spectacular sudden violation of all legitimate claims upon existence is but the cataclysmal heaping up, nations rearing on to each other like express trains in collision, of what is accepted as normal when spread out in every-day recurrence. Both signify that larger and larger masses of mankind have been compressed into an automatic mechanism which checks the play of preference, and imposes dull or deluded acquiescence in what is abhorrent to one's instincts. As was already reiterated by Ruskin and Morris, the streets and factories of our cities, and the desecrated landscape surrounding them, are an outward and visible sign of an inner and spiritual disgrace. Not a symbol merely, but a specimen and a proof, of the paralysis of will and judgment now exhibiting its acute and paroxysmal phase in the material and mental happenings of this war. This is not saying that our times are worse than any previous ones. Let me repeat what I remarked at the beginning of this note, that such pitting of Past against Present or Present against Past is among the futile exercises wherewith our friend Clio helps us to work off, with no further result, our dissatisfaction or (vide Macaulay's frequent descriptions of his own Golden Age of 1830-50) our silly self-satisfaction. It does not matter whether the Past is better than the Present or vice versa. What does is the recognition that the Present is just as bad as it happens to be; and of the share which the Past with its heredities, bodily and social, has had in producing the Present's good and bad points; for only through such recognition can we add our knowledge and our choice and our effort to the other factors determining the Future. This is why, though rarely agreeing with the Muse of History, I have made use of her to point out that the enormity of our war is part and parcel of the enormity of our previous peace. I use the work Enormity advisedly; because, while implying what is painful and against the grain of life, it emphasizes the question of scale, of size, numbers, pace, the element of

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