I’ve been picking and choosing some fun new novelists to guest on my blog. Well, they are new to me anyway. One of these fine authors is Gabriel Constans who wrote the following excerpt from Zen Master Tova Tarantino Toshiba: The Illustrious and Delusional Abbess of Satire.
I hope you enjoy.
Zen Master Tova Tarantino Toshiba: The Illustrious and Delusional Abbess of Satire
by Gabriel Constans
“There’s no business like the know-it-all business,” Rabbi Tova used to say, when referring to those who attempted to profit financially from those seeking spiritual truths. One guy, who called himself Guru Godsend, had become very wealthy by promising his followers that anytime they donated to his organization they were guaranteed to have a personal interview with him (or one of his adherents’) and thus obtain immediate and direct access to The One. He also promised that those who gave would receive ten times the amount on return.
Rabbi Tova couldn’t stomach this swindler. She went to his “church” and challenged him while he was preaching. She made certain to have several scribes attend, to take down every word and thus spread the news about this deceitful man, thus has this story come to be written.
“Friends,” Guru Godsend preached, “you are who you are and where you are because you haven’t put your trust in The One who makes everything possible. Come; give as much as you can in honor of the life He gave. Offer not only your money, but also your soul. We will intercede to make your voice heard, have your wishes granted and all your troubles lifted.”
Rabbi Tova followed the other congregants to the donation plate in front of the podium, put a dollar on top of the wads of cash then stopped and exclaimed loudly, “Nothing happened!” One of the ushers tired to move her along, but she didn’t budge. “Nothing happened!” she repeated. “I just gave you money and nothing is different, accept that you’re now richer than you were a minute ago.”
Again, someone tried to move her along, but Guru Godsend, trying to appear understanding and tolerant, shook his head for the usher to let her be. Addressing both Rabbi Tova and his flock, he said, “You can’t expect something to happen right away. It takes time and faith.”
“I have faith and time is an illusion,” Rabbi Tova replied. “You’ve promised enlightenment, an audience with you to connect with the one you call The One and a return on our money.” She waved her arm towards the crowd.
“Blasphemy… evil… nonbeliever…” could be heard echoing from several church members, but the guru held up his hand for them to refrain.
“You have been misled Sister. We are all equal in the eyes of The One, but some of us have been graced, called or anointed, to make it easier for everyone to experience The One’s knowing and infinite presence.”
“The only one you heard call or anoint you was your self,” Rabbi Tova replied. “What have you done for all these good people?” She said, turning towards the congregation.
“We have brought them understanding and peace.”
“Hogwash and I have washed hogs. You’ve given them nothing more than what we all want to hear… that we are loved, that there is something greater than ourselves and that we can give little and receive a lot. Where’s all the money they’ve given you?”
“There are expenses in serving so many,” the guru replied.
“I’ve seen your ‘expenses,’” Rabbi Tova admonished. “I’ve seen your castles, chariots, horses, fancy clothes, lavish feasts and the women you’ve bought and sold. Give them back their money.”
“Whatever they give is returned tenfold.”
“Oh, I see,” Rabbi Tova said. “In that case, give us back ten times the amount we’ve given. I just put in one dollar, so please give me a ten dollar bill.” She held out her hand.
“You don’t understand woman,” Guru Godsend replied, his smile fading fast. “We’re speaking metaphorically, not literally.”
“Then give me back ten metaphorical dollars and admit this is a sham, a show, a business venture.”
It was at that moment that a miracle occurred. Miraculously, Rabbi Tova suddenly found herself thrown outside the church. She picked herself up, brushed herself off and could be heard singing as she walked away. “There’s no business, like the know business… no business I know.”
YOU CAN FIND GABRIEL’S BOOKS AT
Fountain Blue Publishing
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gabriel Constans previous novel, Buddha’s Wife, was highly acclaimed by writers and reviewers, such as Bell Hooks, Chitra Divakaruni and Robert Blake. It is presently being adapted for the screen. Other works of fiction by the author include The Last Conception, St. Catherine’s Baby, and The Skin of Lions: Rwandan Folk Tales.