DEEP CITY in Times Roman

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Creating Facts

One steamy Sunday, when skies hung low and the humidity ran high, Yung and his wife contemplated revising the Divine Principality. He scratched a wart on his neck and shook his head. “I don’t know, Yunu. For the Americans, maybe we should rewrite the section on sexual restrictions. I don’t think they’ll accept the requirement of three years of celibacy. It is 1971. The DP’s more than ten years old.” He wrinkled his nose and looked at his wife.

“Tut.” Yunu sat cross-legged on a red and gold Oriental carpet spread over the sunny deck of the Simi Valley ranch house and nursed the newest Ghuune. “Of course they will. Point out how they’re unhappy because they are so promiscuous with God’s temples. But say so gently. No one’s told them that lately—without screaming. They will—as Americans say—snap it up.”

Yung frowned and shook his head again. “But the youth here are into this sexual liberation fad. It’s been the rage for about five or six years. We might drive them away.”

Yunu sighed. “You must convince them. Use your golden tongue. How else can we control them if we don’t make them earn the right to copulate? Remember your ‘Sex is a Privilege, a Blessed Privilege’ sermon? Remember your speech about sex being a Sacrament they must earn by serving the Movement?” She smiled. “And then, when you present this principality, remember to emphasize one of the physical rewards: that sex will be so much better—so sublime—when they have served the Movement and earned that privilege.”

Yung scratched his head. “But what if it isn’t?”

“What do you mean?”

“It might not works with Americans. When we spoke to Korean youths, they knew nothing about this sexual revolution. Unless someone had abducted them to work as a prostitute, they were virgins. Once they married, they didn’t know how to compare the act. But these kids have been running around having sex all the time. What if they spend three years in celibacy, then marry, and the sex is no good.”

Yunu smiled again. “After three years, any sex will feel good.” She giggled softly. “Besides, they will believe you because you’re Lord of the Second Advent. Why would you lie?” She shrugged. “Sex is mainly in the mind anyway.”

Yung blinked. He’d never perceived sex that way, not once. For him, it’d always been sensual. Or, at least, it appeared to be sensual—merely a physical stimulus. And his wife seemed to exhibit far more insight about such things. Besides, he wasn’t thinking as clearly because he worried about stirring up followers for the Movement in California. He feared the youth here would ignore him, and his mission would go bankrupt. Already he and Yunu had discussed such plans as having new devotees contribute all their worldly goods to the Movement. And she’d been contacting realtors about buying old homes that needed renovation. They planned to offer free lodging to the new members in exchange for their labor. They’d set up sexless communes where the youths would not only renovate the houses but grow organic foods and sell them in health-food stores the Unis would run. It was a feasible plan, Yung admitted, but he worried his following wouldn’t be large enough to fill the houses, fix them up and grow enough produce to sell for a profit, a profit with a large enough bottom line to run the ministry. It was an overwhelming burden to Rev. Yung. Budgets and financial plans wavered between boring him to frustrating him and ultimately scaring him.

On the other hand, Yunu appeared completely confident. “People have done such things for centuries,” she’d remind him. “And the main reason communes have fallen apart is because of the sexual liaisons and infidelities.” So the restriction had become more crucial, she’d insisted. Nonetheless, despite her words, Yung feared the American teens wouldn’t buy into it. As a youth, he wasn’t so sure he would have, either. In fact, the more he’d contemplated it, he realized he likely would’ve told the Movement to get lost. But with the Blessing of the Vision, he didn’t have to play that role or starve without sex because he was its founder. Indeed, he was Blessed. He glanced back at Yunu and smiled.

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