Analyze the By The Waters Of Babylon Essay

By the Waters of Babylon is about a son of a priest & becoming priest by the name of John who goes on a quest to find himself & show he is worthy to become a priest. Just as in the movie “The Village” there are forbidden places enter into. It’s forbidden to go to any of the dead places except to search for metal & he who touches the metal must be a priest or son of a priest or they will die. John’s father takes him on a journey to search for metal & it is only after John touches the metal does his father sees that John is “truly his son and would be a priest.” As the time comes for John to become a priest, he has to undergo a “purification” rite. John’s father tells him to look into the fire and to say what he sees in his dreams. John sees a river, and, beyond it, a great Dead Place and in it the gods walking. His father calls this a “strong dream” that “may eat you up. ” He then makes his son promise not to travel to the east and cross the great river to visit the Place of the Gods for these places are forbidden to enter. His father sends him off on a spiritual journey but does not know he is going to the forbidden places of the Gods. As John prays & fasts he takes a journey through the forest for eight days and crosses the forbidden river Ou]-dis-sun.

He crosses it & does not die. Once John gets to the Place of the Gods, he steps on the ground & he does not burn. Instead, he only feels energy and magic. As he travels through the place of the Gods in search of food he sees a statue of what seems to be a “God” that says “ASHING” on its base. While being chased by dogs and finds a building with stories he climbs to get away from becoming food. John explores what seems to be an apartment he sees pictures, sculptures & things he has never known of. As he continues looking around he comes upon what he thinks is a dead God. Upon viewing the visage, he has an epiphany that the gods were simply humans whose power overwhelmed good judgment. After John returns to his tribe, he speaks of the places “New York” and “Biltmore”. His father tells him not to, for sometimes too much truth is a bad thing that it must be told little by little. The story ends with John stating his conviction that, once he becomes the head priest, “We must build again.”

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