Saturday, 7 April 2012

The Android of Heavenly Love

I used to think, based on going on retreats, that to live in a community - such as the Beaker one, here, must be constantly wonderful.

All that structure used to enfold me - the set ours of prayer - morning, lunchtime, evening, night (but not so late at night as to prevent one heading for the pub afterwards). The sense of one-ness: of growing together. The profoundness of discussion: the open-ness of people's hearts.

But turns out it doesn't work like that in a real community. Because after a couple of years you know everybody's hopes and fears. You realise you can't live life at the heightened spiritual level of a retreat - you have to live, just as you always used to, in the hum-drum.

And the regular hours of prayer become a prison routine - dragging you out of bed when you really need sleep. And instead of people's best, holiest behaviour, you keep running into their normal, or even worst - when they're tired or frustrated or confused or bad-tempered or just stupid. In short, living in a Community, it turns out, is just like real life.

And that's why I've had Young Keith build me the X-45b Archdruidbot. It's not the first time we've built a robot simulacrum - after all, this Community has been in place for almost ten years - but it is the first time we've built one with Enhanced Christian Characteristics (ECC).

An android with ECC behaves just like.a real Christian ought, as opposed to how they actually do. It mostly has a very slight, beatific, albeit slightly blank smile. At times of boring worship, it can adopt an expression of intense piety.  It has the great advantage, at times of early-morning or late-night worship Occasions such as Solstices or Equinoxes, that it can do without sleep, without getting shirty or forgetting where it lives.

The Robot Archdruid is kind. It does not envy. It does not boast, nor is  it proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered. It keeps no record of wrongs. It  delights not in evil but rejoices in truth.  It always protects and trusts the Beaker People -  always hopes and perseveres for them. It never fails.

It will go to early morning services for me, without complaint, and manage neither to offend nor be offended. And it won't get confused and do the liturgy in the wrong order, or forget everyone's names. I'm just a bit worried, though. If it's so totally perfect, isn't there just a slight chance they'll know it's not me?

1 comment :

  1. I wonder if it also has 'steel toe-capped' boots?

    Probably if made of Stainless (see the pun) steel, it won't need them.

    But, if I were the Arch Druid, I would also teach it to preach about self sustaining communities, needing increased, gift aided giving. And if the Robot's robes and vestments are the most tatty that can be borrowed from the local Anglican Church, than it might even work.

    Another advantage of the robotic Arch Druid is of course, extended lay ins on service days.


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