|Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, founder of the|
Ahmadiyya movement, considered by
Ahmadis to be the Promised Messiah of the latter days
"We have a chance to witness something amazing,
the precist turning point of an entire culture.
"Why do you believe that?" asked Win.
"Because I've seen it before. Cultures at this stage
in their development are at a critical point, a
teetering, you might say. Do they stay in one place,
technologically and culturally stagnant, or do they
move ahead? I believe the ones that do progress
need some kind of shock, a catalyst if you will.
This catalyst is often religious in nature--almost
always, in fact. It leads to a transformation, one
that moves the people either into an organized
society, or, in a place like K'Turia where an organized
society already exists, the transformation jars them
out of the stagnant ceremonial rules which limit
"I am explaining cultural development in a scientific
way. Just because it has an element of religion does
not mean that it is not scientific."
Jesus of K'Turia
By W. R. Pursche and
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The only negative issue I had with this novel was the usual slow beginning as readers move into another world, another planet and begin to meet strange names, learn about their lives, and try to follow different alien species. For me, since I don't routinely read scifi/fantasy, I had never heard of any of the places, so had no idea of the type of people they were, that may have been identified in some other book, except through actually reading the book. I would like to have known, for instance, more about a Treb, which is the species that Win, the main character, was. This type of information would have helped readers understand better what the words meant rather than trying to interpret what was happening... A glossary of the people and some groups was--but nothing was provided for the words specific to the species...
The best way to describe the story is to picture a place where there is no technology. That alone is hard to imagine, right? K'Tura was town where religion was the most important condition of their life. Individuals were "born" into where they fit in a hierarchy that, of course, had the priests at the top, and the farmers, traders and other workers at the bottom. The priests were the only ones that determined The Way for them to live. There was no free will to choose...anything...
The book centers on a small group of off-worlders who had been sent to find a freighter that had a cargo that must be either destroyed or taken away, but nobody knew what the cargo was. They assumed it was weapons.
Garrick was placed in charge. The three others were from a science vessel and had been pulled into a job that they really weren't prepared for.
Prentiss, in many ways, became the lead character. As a cultural specialist, she had hypothesized that societies remained primitive until a major catalyst, usually a very charismatic individual, became a leader to those in that society.
But she never expected to find Jesus on K'Turia.
Naturally she wanted to learn as much as she could while they were there. She had already studied the story of the earth Jesus Christ and assumed that the man who was there on that planet would take a similar role as had happened on earth.
At the same time on K'Turia, there were representatives of the Lemians, a military group that planned to take over the planet, if not as negotiated, then through military action. Those interactions had just begun...
As in most futuristic scifi stories, there are planets that have merged together, while others have remained independent, seeking to take over other planets. Indeed there were a number of negotiations that were taking place during the book. Readers will need to read carefully to see what was actually happening since the religious activities on K'Turia take center stage in the action adventure. I think the authors have done an excellent job in making religion a central part of the story, while not referring to any actual religions, religious books, or leaders...
And it is the character Jesus himself who proclaims that The Way [used in this book] was for everyone. What this results in is a contemporary novel that can speak to any individual about their needs, their desires, their search for what their life means--hopefully, a life of helping others, a life of sacrifice when required...a life with freedom to choose... Well Done Pursche and Gabrield!
Bill Pursche lives in Orlean, VA, with his wife Kim and their son Ryan. They have two dogs, two rescued orphan horses, and a no-longer-feral cat. He splits his time between writing, painting, providing business advice, and doing whatever he can to help save and care for dogs and other animals. His writing has appeared in numerous publications and magazines, and many of his original "Canine Commandments" have been widely quoted and can be found all over the Internet. He donates 100% of the net proceeds of his book "Lessons To Live By: The Canine Commandments" to animal rescue groups and humane associations. With Michael Gabriele, he is also the author of "The Eternal Messiah: Jesus of K'Turia."
Michael Gabriele is a professional musician and artist in Rhode Island. For information about Mike's music, please visit www.myspace.com/michaelgabriele.