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Main Page From Hell to Heaven RBLUM-38 Chapter

From Hell to Heaven

Chapter 38 - Robert’s retrospection to his earthly fortunes: ‘punish, but don’t leave me’.

1. Says Robert: “Friend, Your words verily are most serious. You seem to mean it quite well with me, for which I have to be thankful to You with all my life-force. But it is totally incomprehensible to me how You can still regard me as insufficiently humbled! Was I not from my miserable birth already, through all kinds of adverse experiences humbled to the last atom?

2. “After picking myself out of the dust with time, notwithstanding every impediment, unrest broke out in my country. I dampened it down through my righteous will, without seeking elevation. When all Europe became rebellious thereafter, I was sent to Frankfurt as a state deputy, to represent my state as best I could, guided by my good will. Verily, it was never my remotest intention to harm anyone, but only to be of service, - naturally by those means that I was then convinced were most useful for the nations. Whether it would have really benefited them had my projects succeeded, is another question. But I could not possibly have in those times acted differently to what my knowledge and conscience recognised as good. And I believe that every speech or action out of honest feelings is regarded by God and the world as righteous. For I believe that God looked only upon the motivation and not the outcome, the latter being in the hand of divine power anyway.

3. “The most raging unrest that broke out in Austria made me recall my success in quelling a rebellion against the king, then thinking that I could also succeed in Austria! – So I decided to hasten over there.

4. “But there I found things to be quite different. People were oppressed, complaining about the regent’s false promises. The darkest and most avaricious reaction could be read from the noses of all dynasts and aristocrats, merchants and gold-and-silver Jewry. The poor folk were just labeled proletarians and canaries; and anyone trying to help the poor, spiritually and physically oppressed, people either materially or by sweat of the brow, advice or deed, was seized as an agitator and mutineer and bumped off without further ado, - which ‘honour’ also became my despicable lot. If a normally well-regarded and reputable man is dragged to the place of execution and there shot like a common beast, then I believe one was sufficiently humiliated for any honour ever received anywhere?

5. “Or is this also too little humbling for You? Should I be humbled even more? I find this completely impossible, especially in my present condition. Because more misery than I now suffer could hardly befall a being.

6. “I have nothing other than You, my most beloved Friend. You are everything to me: my comfort, my greatest riches, my compensation for all my earthly woes and humiliation. But instead of comforting me, you awaken in me, with your wise speaking, other, new and tormenting misgivings which only increase my misery rather than reduce it. Behold, dear Friend, this is somewhat hard-hearted of You!

7. “It may indeed be well-intentioned, and if it is possible for me to do what you counsel me then this could indeed be my greatest fortune. But consider one thing: That I am a most miserable and unhappy being, that bare of everything that could fortify my emotions; then You will make Your wise doctrines less intimidating!

8. “I shall henceforth not praise myself even with the feeblest of thoughts. May all my actions be eternally branded evil and contemptuous; gladly shall I be the last and most worthless being before You throughout infinity, if You demand it.

9. “But just don’t abandon me, making me exceedingly miserable thereby. Do not again threaten me with Your absence but fortify me with the promise that You shall not eternally leave me, and I shall give you the most faithful undertaking that I will do whatever You ask of me!

10. “No matter how much I sinned upon Earth, just punish and humble me for it to every possible extent; yet I shall never cease loving You. But don’t talk any more about abandoning me, because that would be the most terrible thing You could do to me!”

Main Page From Hell to Heaven RBLUM-38 Chapter