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Stranger in a Strange Land

Robert A. Heinlein



Chapters XXXVI–XXXIX, page 2

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Chapter XXXVI

Jubal runs into Jill, who is delighted at his having spent the night with Dawn. The entire ninth circle, she reveals, had been psychically present during the "growing-closer."

Mike is relieved to talk to Jubal, for he is the only person he can talk to who will not be overwhelmed. Mike confesses to Jubal that he has recently learned that he was sent to Earth as a spy for the Old Ones. They had recorded his experiences and examined them as data regarding Earth culture. The Martians may choose to destroy Earth, or try to remake its culture in a Martian image. Jubal asks Mike to describe the Old Ones, and Mike explains that the Old Ones are Martian ghosts who control the affairs of the planet. The Old Ones do not rush judgments, and will take at least five hundred years before deciding upon a fate for the Earth.

Mike tells Jubal that his teachings have never truly been religious; he has disguised them as religion to appeal to the public. Mike praises the linkage of human minds during sex to be the greatest knowable ecstasy. But Mike knows that humans are given to jealousy, and wants to help people defeat this emotional obstacle. Mike reveals to Jubal that he and Jill have mentally vanished a number of hostile people recently. Jill has become comfortable with "discorporating" people since grokking that it is impossible to truly kill a person, as his or her spirit always lives on.

Mike worries that he has misled his followers to believe that all humanity will eventually experience the joyful contentment they feel. Perhaps, Mike thinks, humankind requires unhappiness and conflict. The phrase "Thou art God," Mike explains, is not a light affirmation, but a responsibility that each person must bear. Earthlings seem unready to accept that God is within them. Jubal tells Mike to exhibit Martian patience and not give up on his mission. Jubal tells Mike that he must show people the truth.

Chapter XXXVII

A hostile mob of people gathers outside the hotel. Mike puts on his fanciest outfit and heads out, accompanied by Anne in her Fair Witness robe, and Duke carrying cameras. Jubal follows, but Mike encourages him to stay in the room with the other ninth circle members and watch the stereovision. Jubal believes he sees Mike slice off one of his own fingers while slicing an apple. Jubal goes back inside.

A newscaster covers the scene outside. Mike then appears outside the hotel. A shaft of light hits Mike as he makes his clothing vanish and tells the people, "Look at me. I am a son of man." The report cuts to a soap commercial. When coverage returns, people are throwing rocks at Mike. Mike offers the crowd water. A shotgun blast blows Mike's right arm off. Mike preaches messages of love as the crowd surrounds and murders him.

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Apollo =/= Mars

by Brags753, July 10, 2013

The summary incorrectly states that Apollo is the Greek "word" for Mars. Actually, Ares is the Greek name for the god known as Mars in Latin.

Apollo is one of the few classical gods known by nearly the same name in Greek and Latin. In English, he is called Apollo in both contexts.

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