Who is Simon Zealot?

          MY Name is Simon Zealot. Despite the fact that some of you have been receiving emails from me for many years now, it occurs to me that I have never properly introduced myself. Since many of us have never actually met face to face, most of you have had to merely infer who I am from the sort of topics I choose to make the focus of these letters. Yet the answer to the question, “Who is Simon Zealot?” will go a long way to helping you, the reader, understand why I write such things in the first place.

          Unfortunately, the answer to that first question is dramatically different depending on who you ask. I met a man in Texas about five years ago who said he was born at the same army medical facility that I was. He told me about a secret government program called MKUltra, which originally focused on mind control research, but eventually spun off into a host of other covert experiments, all carried out on unwitting military personal and civilians as well. He claimed that many of the pregnant women and their children who had been given medical care at various military facilities, such as the one where we were born, have been affected in different ways by the Project since it began way back in the sixties. So if you ask this guy, he’d tell you that Simon Zealot is in fact a super soldier, a secret military experiment, specially engineered, in some undisclosed way, towards some sinister ends so horrible that most average civilians would be unable to even imagine them. Since, in my opinion, that’s just stupid amounts of awesome, I strongly encourage you to ask that guy who I am.

          Yet the supply of unexpected and bizarre answers to our titular question doesn’t end there. Interestingly enough, to certain misguided church groups, I have been informed that I am nothing more, nor less, than a bonafide Demon. (To be precise, I’m told that I’ve been classified as a Devil, which is a bit higher ranking than a mere Demon, but why split hairs?) As the story goes I conspire here on earth as the dangerous instrument of a malicious and infernal will, attempting to draw worship away from God the Father above, and to gather human souls into the clutches of my Dark Master who dwells below. Now I must admit that there are times when even I am forced to pause and consider whether or not these guys might be on to something with all this. I mean, one can’t be too careful wherever dramatic characters bearing ominous sounding titles like “the Great Deceiver” are involved, but let’s just put this idea aside, at least for the time being, and move onto some other possible answers to our question.

          Ironically, all the way on the other end of the spectrum, I once met a man who claimed that I, in one of my past lives, gave him the important task of delivering, in each one of my later lives, the reminder that I am, in fact, Jesus the Nazarene. Of course, it now appears that quite possibly he was possessed by something we had previously conjured up in our local cemetery, and since he stopped being the herald of my great new age after a friend and I exorcised this same strange spirit from him a short time later, I don’t really take this idea too seriously. If, however, it happens to be the truth, all I have to say is sorry about all the Christianity. I doubt that that was what I intended.

          Of course, about seven years ago, I had this unexpected burst of inspiration that quickly produced a fairly in depth training manual, one meant for a group of beings called the Malakim, or, as these are more commonly known, Angels. Since then, I’ve hidden this art of Malakimae within a more secularized version, which I dubbed the Conflict Arts, and I even incorporated a non-profit organization to help me promote and teach these physical and verbal conflict skills, offering related services such as mediation, security, and journalistic investigation. Thus, the stated goal of my current efforts is no longer to produce “Angels,” which appears to have been an impossible proposal in the estimation of almost anyone I talked to anyway, but rather to train something I call Private Diplomats.

          However, it is quite possible that those who know me best still suspect that I fancy myself some sort of Angel. This is, in all actuality, not very far from the mark, but the full truth is slightly more complicated than that.

          My name is Simon Zealot. I am named for the radical disciple who urged Jesus to conquer Rome and to reveal his full power to the masses. I am, for the time being, a mortal man, yet I believe that all of us here are bound by the flesh for but a short time only, and that even while incarcerated thus, we can still direct our wills towards miraculous and inexplicable ends. In this way one might say I am a Djinn submerged within a bottle of skin and bone, only alone until I’ve recovered my kin who still burn within the endless sea of bottles all around me. To kill time until I find and unbind them, I work to do precisely what my namesake wanted Jesus to: Conquer the world and reveal the limitless possibilities that have somehow become concealed by the merely real.

          To this end, I am an artist, not only martial and venusian, but visual, performance, and escape as well. I am a hypnotist and a mind reader; a fortuneteller and an astrologer. Primarily, I am, if nothing else, an occultist, a magician and a mystic, and I am writing you all of this just so I can leave you with one final great secret, the same revelation that Hassan-i-Sabbah once entrusted to each of those initiated into the inner-circle of his secret society of Assassins…

          Nothing is Real;
          Anything is Possible.

          (So, yes, I might actually be a Demon. So what? You’re not some kind of racist, are you?)

 
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