I found this while surfing around the net…
(An Updated Screwtape letter)
A Kingdom of Noise (A Screwtape letter to a modern generation)
My Dear Despicable Wormwood,
Good news! The latest commendations have arrived from the Council of the Pit. You impress the lower-downs, my zealous Wormwood. They have heard of your schemes on the Noise Proliferation Committee (NPC). Indeed, places of solitude and moments of silence grow ever more scarce in the Enemy’s vast and vulgar dominion. Oh, what euphoria to see his insufferable creatures rush to fill the dead air with a cacophony of cell phones and music, leaf blowers and manipulated car exhaust pipes, 24-hour news and I-Pods. Those nauseating humans cannot escape their self-made dungeon of din!
My pride bubbles like brimstone, Wormwood. It is down-wrong delicious that you are able to entice your assignments into believing that quiet and solitude are a waste of time, even harmful to their pursuits. We must be the demon in the whirlwind, invading their private space, cluttering their innermost being with commotion.
Make them feel empty without a Blackberry on their hip or a television blaring in the background. Tune their alarm clock to a raucous station with bombastic DJs. Call their cell phone on their way to work or during a meal. Put TV screens in banks and hotel lobbies, gas stations and airplanes – anywhere humans might have time to reflect. Offer deals to Walt Disney World and casinos, and make a weekend in the Catskills appear unexciting or at least unaffordable. Over time the humans will grow unaware of the high-pitched ringing in their ears.
But oh, how dreadful it is if they do notice and, worse yet, begin to reject the delightful opiates we offer. An hour’s walk or an evening alone can be hazardous. Even a drive with a broken radio carries risk. Peace and quietude, after all, are the Enemy’s handiwork. He waits patiently for them in the stillness, whispering for them to rest or ponder or, dare I say that repulsive word, meditate.
I trust you understand what is at stake. If allowed to contemplate the empty pursuits and hollow activity that often fill their days, there is no telling what horrific changes they may make in their lives. As long as the volume is high and the lights are flashing, there is little danger of this. But when allowed to face things as they really are, stripped of the comfort provided by our dizzying distractions, our subjects often choose against our ways.
This kind of activity, or rather inactivity, is a breeding ground for all manner of destructive outcomes. Rest gives them refreshed bodies and clear minds. Clarity draws them to that which we most hate: truth. In such moments their vision grows strong and purpose is rekindled. For Hell’s sake, do not let this happen!
Some devils say it is of lesser importance, but I would advise you to keep all thoughts of old friendships, childhood dreams, or yearnings for simple delights far from them. These are the noxious things of the kingdom of peace; we are the kingdom of noise.
So hurry! Cue the fire engine, the beeping pager, the woman calling for a cab. Cause the head to turn, the eyes to wander, and the mind to work overtime. Even in times of silence, cause their minds to fill and spin like a tornado. If necessary, you may even need to bring forward some of the Enemy’s tools to achieve our ends. Use a good cause to keep the schedule jam-packed. Beautiful music, grating as it is to our ears, chases the silence away same as any other sound.
Given the stakes, you must do whatever it takes to keep quietude at bay. Remember, do not grow weary in doing bad.
Your affectionate uncle,