The question in Poll No 41 in the original Eye Scene Glasses Chat (February 1998) was '
Did you resist wearing glasses? If so, what changed your mind?' 
This story developed out of that, and is now offered in a slightly touched-up form.

MARNETHIAS

By PHANTOM

Woe unto them that defy Divine Providence!!!

Blessed are they that resist the devices of the Evil One!!!

Verily, it is laid upon me that I prophesy, and speak, and warn them that seek to see that which GOD hath decreed they shall not see. By using spectacles and other the like snares of the Enemy, they walk in the ways of our first parents who sought that which was forbidden, and ate the fruit that GOD had decreed they should not eat.

Behold, I Marnethias bear witness to the mercy that GOD hath shewn to me-ward! In the days of my youth, in the very year that GOD first caused my beard to sprout and my male member to burgeon, it pleased Him also that mine eyes should become dim, that the things that were far from me I might no longer see clearly. First, those things that were at more than one chainís distance were made dim, but ere long only within a distance of one pole could I see plainly. Being at that time in the hands of pedagogues, I thereby suffered manifest hindrance in my studies, till my parents, the father that begat me and the mother that bore me and gave me the uncircumcised name of Darren, ordained that I visit a practitioner of the vile arts of optometry. Who, in his perverse skill, in a darkened chamber from which the light of heaven was shut out, determined that I should use spectacles (those engines of Satan) and rebel thereby against the design of Heaven that I should look with clearness on those things only that were nigh unto me. I, being then unenlightened by the knowledge of GODís will, did at first repine that I must thus be singled out from my fellows, but did then, in the uncircumcised fatness of my heart, greatly rejoice that the clear vision of distant things was restored to me and that I was again able to enjoy the profane pursuits of youth. May the vengeance of GOD be turned away from me!!! In the years that followed, GOD once and again warned me: once and again did He cause mine eyes to be further dimmed. And once and again did I, being as yet unenlightened, further defy His Will and resort to the black arts of the optometrist. Who once and again did prescribe for me lenses that were ever stronger, till I, who by GODís design should see with clearness only the things that were within one cubitís distance, and all else as through a glass darkly, did presume to look, through glass perverted from its natural use, on many things that it was ordained I should not see. Alas that I was ever born to fall into this sin!!! Alas for the father that begat me and the mother that bore me, that they caused me to turn from the way of innocence!!! Alas for the man who did again and again in his darkened chamber employ his arts upon me, compounding my sin with his, vouchsafing me the vision that GOD designed should not be mine!!! May his death be hard and his agony long!!!

But praise to GOD who in these last days hath called me to repent and turn away from my sin!!! Praise to Him who hath called me to prophesy!!!

Behold, a few months since, GOD in His mercy visited me with sundry afflictions that I might return to His ways and proclaim His Will. When I was disporting myself on skis He caused me to collide with a tree, to the end that mine arm and leg were fractured and I endured concussion which did persist for three days. It was a singular dispensation that my spectacles (those engines of Satan) were not broken. This seemed at first a great blessing, till after forty days GOD visited me with a blinding headache, such that I fell into a swoon. In this swoon He shewed himself to me and spake unto me and revealed unto me many things. He shewed me that it is His Will that men should look on the world with eyes unglazed, and use only the sight that He has given unto them. He revealed to me that my spectacles (those engines of Satan) had been preserved unbroken only that they might be destroyed by mine own hands and feet in my repentance. He told me that when next He should visit me with a headache I must take those vile engines, grind them under my feet, cast them away from me, and from that day forward be content that mine eyes should see only what His Providence had ordained. And he called me by a new name. All that He commanded me I did, when next the fit visited me. I ground those vile instruments under my feet, and I sought a place meet to cast them from me. To this end I sought the loan of a bicycle and made my way thereon to the banks of the river. Into this torrent I cast all that remained of those vile engines of Satan.

Praise to GOD for His mercies!!! As I rode back, dim of sight but light of heart, He purposed that for my further enlightenment I should be smitten by a truck whose approach had been concealed from me by reason of the weakness of mine eyes. The bicycle was reduced to a mass of twisted metal but I was spared further injuries save a new concussion, on account of which I am presently confined to an hospital. In my swoon GOD spake to me again and laid it upon me that I should proclaim to the world that spectacles are truly the vile engines of Satan, and all who would escape His wrath should grind them beneath their feet and cast them from them.

To the end, then, that I and my fellow-patients should escape the Wrath of God, I spake most earnestly unto three of them that I discovered (having for that purpose come nigh unto them) to be wearing spectacles (those engines of Satan) urging and exhorting them that they should cast the forbidden things from them and grind them to dust. When in the fatness of their hearts they laughed me to scorn, I, having regard for their eternal salvation, did myself snatch the spectacles from their faces and grind them beneath my feet. Alas for my bodily comfort! Being by that time wellnigh restored unto health, they did pursue me and (their dimness of sight being a good deal less than mine) catch me without difficulty and rain many blows on my back. Ready though I be to suffer in the cause of my salvation and theirs, plainly it is meet that I give my testimony in such wise as one that is dim of sight may conveniently do.

To this end GOD hath appointed that in the Occupational Therapistís office there should be a computer with access to the Internet, and I rejoice that I am thereby enabled to obey His command and prophesy, worthily employing that near sight that He hath vouchsafed unto me.

Repent! REPENT!! REPENT!!! REPENT!!!!

Cast away from you those vile engines of Satan, your spectacles; grind them beneath the heels of your feet, destroy them, make dust of them! Seek not to see the things that GOD hath put beyond the reach of your eyes, for this is an abomination!

On one last question am I now seeking Divine guidance: How am I to dispose of the Occupational Therapistís body?

The End

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