THE HALL OF TWO TRUTHS – A Novel  (612 pages)
For the general reader
2003 by
Robert Campbell

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The Hall of Two Truths

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  • Search by ISBN 0-595-23065-2
Book Summary
Set in the context of a love story and its spiritual aftermath twenty years later, this tragicomic adventure
reveals social implications of the cosmic order through the strange “geophysics” of a very strange man. The
story will take you from the majestic shores of the Andaman Sea to the ancient temples of Malta, and into the
ridiculous trials of forty nationalities trying to keep a ramshackle oil field running in the Libyan Sahara. It will
show you a landscape that existed before the dawn of civilization. It will take you from a love nest in the
Canadian Rockies to an incredible journey up the Nile and a nation tortured by chaos and revolution. It will
expose the hatching of a terrorist plot that climaxes in a bizarre escape. And during the course of this madcap
action it will give you a glimpse into the meaning of the pyramids and Stonehenge. It will show you how we are
of three minds, not one. It will show you how to climb the mountain of history. It will show you how to transcend
the whole of space and time. It will give you a glimpse of the cosmic mind. It will make you laugh; it will make
you sad; and it will make you wonder profoundly. It will entertain you while will making you think as never
before.
Samples

                                      CHAPTER ONE

Hormones! Had to be something like that. Had to be an explanation!

The sea was a vast pliant blanket of color. It coasted in past the cliffs that stood like great teeth, rimming the
mouth of the inlet. It coasted in with the rising tide, undulating in long sleek swells, powered by the momentum
of some distant source.

Perceptions exaggerated. Like being on some kind of trip.

There was no cause for the swells. The sea should have been calm. Yet the swells kept coming, strange and
haunting, driven by the unrelenting momentum impelling them endlessly across the lagoon.

Something deep stirring. Like being part of something immense.

They kept repeating the same cryptic message over and over. An incomprehensible plea from an unknown
source. A persistent hand of the blind, reaching out of the depths, knocking incessantly on the door of the deaf.

But lovely! Like sex without effort or hassle. Like ongoing orgasm.

Each swell built to a slick sharp knife, cut by the air, plunging recklessly into the shore. They captured the sun.
Rising from their rolling mounds of sea, they captured the glow of conscious intention. Then they smashed
themselves into a lather of death. In tireless succession, they hissed up the beach, then retreated into the next
restless plunge.

Had to be hormones.  They had been at me for days. Waves of them. Whole scenes transformed. Insights
drowning in color. Floating. Something underneath moving Incredible!

Legions of somnambulant swells kept marching to their death. They drifted in over rich beds of coral, teeming
with fish. They drifted in along the base of the cliffs, eroding cavities at the roots of the teeth that soared a
thousand feet from the sea.

Something driving the endocrine glands. Flooding every cell in my body. Androgens flooding my brain!
Testosterone! Churning over in race. Going nowhere! Death! Madness! Like being raped by Aphrodite! Like
being one with water, earth, air!

They drifted in silence from their secret source, to the roar of their final demise on this distant shore. They
drifted into the yawning mouth of the lagoon from the tireless mother of life in the vast deep ocean beyond.

The ultimate seduction! Transcending desire. Union with the Mother of Life! The ultimate orgasm!

I stretched my legs out on the warm dry sand, slipped off my sandals, dug my heels in a bit. I leaned back on
my hands. Incredible! She was wearing a swim suit as blue as the sea. At the end of the cove. She was
climbing down from some rocks. Just the two of us in the cove. People stayed around a bend in the other
direction. Her return journey would take her past me. She began strolling back along the edge of the surf,
maintaining her distance from it so that each rush of foam just barely nibbled her toes.

Like some  hellish union with Persephone! Like continual climax!!

There was a kind of melody in her casual stride, as if something in her movements betrayed that she was both
absorbed in her solitude and captivated by each restless lunge of the sea. She was oblivious to all but the surf
and the sea. Her limber frame swayed with the surge of the sea. The sea governed her pulse and her tempo. It
ebbed and flowed in her veins. It regulated her pace and her rhythm, as if she herself had emerged from the
surf through its striving to reach up and capture the light. She was one with the sea, born from it, by some
miracle of creation fashioned through its restless momentum.  

Hormones! Cooking gaggles of cells in my hypothalamus! Screaming to my infundibulum!  

A vision in a dream was gliding toward me. Long blonde locks tumbled over tanned shoulders in fluent
brilliance, lifting to ride on a warm breath of breeze. Her pendulous arms swung diacritical hands with a
reciprocal grace that directed the fluid orchestration of her body. She was a symphony of motion. She was a
melody played by the sea.

I was absorbed in the same timeless rhythms, the cadence crashing through my mind, the melody moving in
her lingering dance along the lips of the sea. Each surge of the surf roared, then hissed, then kissed at her
toes. I felt the same rush and pull of the surf at my soul, the same tidal surge from the source of life. I felt the
same gravity pulling me, longingly, back to the same mysterious source. I was suspended in a balance
between the rush and the pull, between the rise and the fall, the surf drawing us together in a common bond
with our common source in the sea. A vision was emerging out of eternity, riding on the amorous lips of the sea.

Everything blurring, swirling, swimming in hormones, drowning in cellular orgasm. It was Oedipus all over  
again! Answered the riddle of the winged sphinx, and he won the kingdom! Union with the Mother!
Unspeakable union!

Sinking shafts of golden light were spilling through ruptured tiers of cloud, splashing as recklessly as the surf
over the majestic expanse of a paradise beyond compare. It spilled through emblazoned billowing windows,
drenching the towering cliffs in a golden rain. It glistened from the skin of the monstrous sea, writhing uneasily
in its mammoth bed. The sea was alive, pulsing with currents and tides in a rhythmic response to heavenly
motions. The sea was our mother. Her blood still flows in our veins. She tossed us ashore and bid us reach for
the light of knowing, through the power, the passion, and the pain of love. Thus we danced through the
clamorous chains of evolution, surging and receding in waves of life, striving for freedom.

Chemical emotions splashing in cerebral splendor! Visions reeling out of eternity!

We were one, she and I, as she danced through the light pouring over her shoulders in a golden sheen. Long
fingers of light played over her bosom, hugging the slender contour of her waist, then ran down the curve of
her leg, gushing forth in a profusion of diamonds awash in the foam. We were one, she and I, in the light of
knowing, with the mother of life in the sea. We were one, she and I, with the rush and the pull of the surf on the
shore, with the power, the passion, and the pain of love, as surely as if we were mutually locked in its tender
embrace. We were one, she and I, in the golden flood, spilling from the billowing windows of heaven. We were
one in the timeless mind of creation, drowned in the cadence of crashing and hissing.

The scene transfigured! Vision adrift like froth on the sea! Hormones churning in cerebral flotsam! Every cell
rising in orgasm.

The whole ocean reached up in wave after wave, out of the bowels of eternity. The whole ocean reached up to
capture the light, then smashed and hissed in the surf that kissed at her toes. It kissed at her toes, yet it won
her heart, the wild mute melody of life through the ages resounding through the solitary passion of her mind.  
She released her gaze from the plunging surf. She turned her face toward me. A capricious breeze teased a
wisp of her hair to play with the tip of her delicate nose. As a nimble finger pulled it away, our eyes finally met in
mutual surprise. We were one, she and I, with the tide of life. It was like seeing oneself in another.

I felt her presence in mine!

For a moment our eyes were mutually locked in the passionate light of knowing. In our gaze there was mutual
amazement, a shock at being one in one another. The rhythm of her dance was slightly disturbed, then the
spell was broken in a mutual blush. The rush of blood, from the heart to the head, gushed up with a flood of
feelings. Tides of emotions bounded onto the stage of conscious reflection, without language to give them
expression. Each naked in the eyes of the other, we were exposed and embarrassed.

I blushed like a schoolboy!

Her face erupted in a radiant smile, her features awash in shimmering lights. Her blue eyes were alive like the
sea, “Hello,” she said softly, the word hovering between us in the vibrant air. “Hello,” I beamed back through
the blush that we shared. Her smile lingered on, as she went on with her dance, a warm glow of humility
embracing us both.

Twenty years! She was twenty years younger!

We were one, she and I, and yet we were two, as she continued gracefully on her separate way. Her torso
swayed with the surge of the surf, her blonde blonde hair caressed by the breeze, her silhouette drenched in
the glistening sheen spilling through the billowing windows of heaven. She wandered away on the lips of the
sea, impelled by the momentum of eternity. She dwindled away through the golden rain, until she dissolved to
a memory.

I continued to watch the lazy line of palms lean over the beach, long after she disappeared from sight. Their
outstretched fronds strained like deaf ears to the cryptic preachments of the pounding surf, while her memory
danced on to the rhythms resounding through my mind. Her memory lingered, even as it slowly ebbed and
waned, fading in waves, losing clarity of form, disintegrating to a froth, then finally receding like a sweep of the
surf back into the fertile womb of the mind. Still her memory lingered on, a formless reality, alive in the timeless
ocean of mind wherein we are one. Her memory was focused as a point in the depths, an independent focus of
the same tireless momentum that stirred in my soul. Then it began to transform.

It was as if that remnant of her spirit in my mind had sought out a friend; not a friend of hers, but of mine, not a
friend she could have known. The timeless momentum reached across a span of twenty years, seeking out a
love I had left on the other side of the world. At first it was only the point of focus that shifted, ever so subtly in
the depths. Two memories joined hands and merged for a moment as one—two memories, ignoring the waves
of intervening events. They were one, so much alike in their manner and appearance, and yet they were two.
Then out of the ocean of fragmented experience, the timeless momentum brought a name to the surface.
Lanny... Lananda Wren was the love that lived in my heart twenty years before. Her name touched off an
inferno.         

Eternal! Sublime! Mundane!

With her name, an image of her form began to crest in my mind. She captured the light of my vision, riding the
tide, impelled by a swell, wearing a dress as blue as the sky, her blonde blonde hair tossed by the breeze.
Choosing her form however she wished, from out of the mists of memory, she floated as a veil on the lips of the
sea, emerging out of eternity. She came like a ghost, across time and space, a blush on her cheeks, a smile
on her face. She came like the wind, with a will of her own, and splashed like the surf in the heart of me. We
were one, she and I, in a torrent of love that gushed through my mind in a dizzy whirl. We were one, she and I,
that incredible girl, one in the timeless mind of creation. We were one, she and I, with spirits entwined,
swimming and soaring through one body and mind. I could see her features without need for eyes, swarming
inside me in the rapture of union. She spilled through my spirit in wave after wave, with a surging momentum
that I couldn’t control... and it wouldn’t subside.  

Hormones! Waves of them back with a vengeance! Waves of them flooding with memories!





..... It was impossible to suggest why the memory of such an enigmatic man as Bartholomew Flynn, should
suddenly, at that very moment, come into my head. Even the memory itself was enigmatic. It was suddenly just
mired in my head, amidst the confusion of impressions, while still enraptured with Lanny.

Bart Flynn! Mad as his hatmaker mother!

There were connections between Lanny and the enigmatic Bart Flynn, even though they had never met, nor
did they even know of one another. There were even connections between Black Bart and the monk. They
were both on a quest of great importance to themselves, but in vastly different ways.

Different! I’ll say! Mad as a goddam hatter!

Some called him Black Bart, although the only things black about him were the pupils of his blazing green eyes.
He had flaming red hair and a beard to match, minus a mustache, all adorning a head that seemed always in
motion, even when it was still. The latter was mounted, like a flame on a candle, atop his tall gaunt frame.
Knobby shoulders suspended long gangling arms, the whole ungainly mass of his body seeming to float above
feet of enormous proportions. He looked like an Abraham Lincoln on fire. And Black Bart, despite his wild ways,
was at least as brilliant as the time honored president. Some called him Black Bart precisely because he was
such an enigma.

Hormones! Connections! Doors swinging into long halls. Swimming through channels. A shadow.        

But why should his memory crop up at this precise moment? Strange connections were occurring that were as
enigmatic as the man himself. Maybe he was coming. The fool had an uncanny way of cropping up in my life. I
shuddered at the prospect. I tried to dismiss it.

A dark shadow!!

There was something else. With his memory came the memory of another—a man with whom we had shared
the specter of death a decade before. Unusual circumstances had implicated us all, even while events were
casting me adrift to wander the world.

The shadow of death... Untimely... Unjust...  

. . . . . .
The Hall of Two Truths
Also see
ESCAPE FROM PURGATORY - A Novel