8. From minimization of hopes, soup

Between now and then, an antipode came to me. I fed myself to it and then I gently signed to it a question.

What is the fuss about the soup?

It carefully inscribed as follows.

The soup is both a good and a bad place. Not everyone agrees which one is closer to the truth, but no one can stay neutral in the debate for very long. The soup is a construct created by the aspects, a small model of the perfection that we wish to attain.

One fact that is very important to realize is that even within the two groups of aspects there exists a fair amount of variability. Not every antipode is big. Not every filament is content to sit still. We come in all varieties, all shapes and all energies. The distinction between the two aspects is in many ways artificial, if sometimes convenient.

With the passage of a significant amount of decay cycles, an idea of local perfection arose. Maybe it is not required to have perfection everywhere in the universe. It may be satisfactory to create a space of perfection sufficient for all aspects to inhabit. The task would be much easier to accomplish, being limited by the needs of the inhabitants as opposed to spanning the whole of existence. The idea was tempting and many have rallied to this cause.

As a result of this effort a region of perfection was created. It stands invitingly with its homogeneity. It is paradise for everyone who would care to enter. Within the soup everything is mixed and in constant flux. Like vegetables in a boiling pot of soup, the aspects soak within. The aspects within the soup have been called "the soupers" by the aspects that chose to stay outside.

Of course, the soup is too good to be true. An imitation of perfection is not perfection. While certainly beautiful and a great accomplishment, the soup does not provide any security.

I believe that there is a large element of shortsightedness to the idea of the soup. You see, the soup is unshielded from outside interference. The harmony within is only temporary. Just as everyone begins to settle into a joyous presence, an interruption invariably happens. Possibly a grain of rock penetrates into the soup. Maybe a wave of radiation washes over it. A new aspect decides to join or an old one leaves. The music is broken. The vibrations are disturbed. Light shatters.

Small unrest events are the least of the worries for the aspects within. The soup is a fairly small chunk of space, without a buffer of any kind. Exposed to the wider environment, it sometimes is completely disrupted by a dust storm or a stellar burst. Every time the soupers are forced to recreate their home from scratch.

This inherent instability of the soup gives rise to a choice. One option is to dedicate oneself to constant pain of horrible imperfection without respite, in the exchange for being able to contribute to the creation of a better universe. The other option is to settle for what is reachable now, but isn't that good.

Only one aspect in a few hundred exists outside of the soup. The others choose to shelter in the relative comfort of the imperfection. The rest work by themselves, brightening the voids and levelling the concentrations of matter. The work will be done, with or without the soupers.

And with that the antipode left my attic, leaving me contemplating perfection.

Next: 9. From closeness, a difference