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Love is the Only Rule in Which to Live By

November 17, 2015

Once upon a time and place that both is and isn’t reality, three shipswere sailing the ocean. It doesn’t matter which. Naturally, the winds changed day in and day out, but each captain kept the sails set in the same direction and all six ships wandered over the waves with no chance of reaching port.

The first ship was captained by a Catholic Saint.

“We will reach shore soon,” the saint told his crew after several months. “We are in God’s hands. He will deliver us.”

“But we are lost and our rations are getting low,” the crew said. “We are losing hope.”

“Have faith,” the saint said and went back into his quarters.

The crew, though scared and doubtful, faithfully continued their work to keep the ship afloat. They continued on with their routine work and questioned nothing.

– – –

The second ship was captained by a Muslim Sheikh.

“We must praise Allah,” he told his crew after several months. “He will deliver us.”

“We will pray more,” the crew said. “And work harder.”

– – –

The third ship was captained by a brilliant atheist.

“Trust me,” he told his crew after several months. “We will find shore soon, before the rations are completely dwindled. We must continue to battle the elements together.”

“But we have not made any progress since we set out,” the crew argued.

“What is the point in continuing on?”

“To keep your fellow crew members alive,” the captain said. “Continue on for each other.”

– – –

Another month passed and each ship’s crew had forgotten they were lost. They became content in the routine of keeping their respective ships afloat; the thought of a destination had slipped their minds.

They were happy with their daily work and bravely battled many storms.

“God has delivered us into tomorrow,” the Catholics sang.

“Allah provides each and every day,” the Muslims shout.

“We have made it this far,” the athiests said. “We will continue to keep ourselves afloat as we have thus far.”

A great storm came.

No other storm any of the crews had faced compared to the storm as their ships were tossed high into the air and down below the water’s surface. The crews worked harder than ever before. Many lives were lost into the ocean’s depths.

The Christians looked out and saw two ships in their path.

The Muslims looked out and saw two ships in their path.

The atheists looked out and saw two ships in their path.

But none of the captains changed their course. They hadn’t done so in so long, they had forgotten it was even possible.

“These ships must steer clear,” each captain shouted. “We are going to collide!”

And so they did – all three at once.

As the ships began to slowly sink, the captains argued and fought with each other. Many of the crews did the same and they drew their swords and fought to the death, jumping from ship to ship to attack the others.

“It is your fault!” they yelled at each other.

“If you would have changed your course we would not have collided!”

Their argueing circled with their swords.

However, a small number from each crew noticed one of the ships was not beyond repair and quickly jumped to that ship, working together to repair the damage. Some recovered pieces from their own ship and brought it over along with their tools.

The fighting continued as the other ships sank. Those who survived the battle were in danger of drowning. But the storm settled and the waters became calm.

Those left on the remaining ship had salvaged the wreck and cheered for their success. They quickly looked down, however, and noticed there were still people swimming around the ship shouting for help.

They tied their ropes together and tossed one end over and they were able to save the swimmers one by one.

Soon, those who remained looked around.

“We have no captain,” they said. “What will we do?”

“Well,” said one. “We made it out of that wreck alive. I think we can manage the ship.”

And together they worked and taught themselves how to change the sails with the wind.

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