On my conquest of PKD's world, with reading of "The man in the high
castle", "Ubik" and "Do the androids dream of electric sheep", I took on his
"VALIS"=Vast Active Living Intelligence System.
It starts benign, a psychedelic world of 1960-ies, with only some glimpses
of danger, enrolled in weird names of the characters, like Horselover Fat or
Then it bores one immensely through almost Jehowah Witness-like boredom of
religious blobbering through hundred or more pages-here I almost threw it
away, really. I do not think I met the writer (or the editor) who would not
cut out such a ghastly nonsense, even if it would occur to anyone to
actually write such stuff down!
Luckily I was patient, as at the end of a tunnel, there came a light! And
patient I was, indeed! The writing seemed as if an adept of mish-mash of
Christianity, Buddhism and Gibbon did not succed to come up to digest the
Message for the lazy American reader. Such a reader would not dare to read
Caesar directly, but preferred to look, with some curiosity, at the vomit of
it after the painful burps of the afore-mentioned adept.
So, after nonsensical, psychopatologic religious bullshit of a pity character
bent after his feeling of guilt for not being able to help to his
energetic vampire friends to survive their psichological or body illness,
story started to be interesting.
That is, if we can consider actual waking up to the world in which the Christ
himself is alive and kickin' somewhere in California, and the cypher from
apostolic Christians from Roman times finds the audience in the time of
Vietnam war. The society is formed, which consists of four individuals, who
cram to the airplane to visit the Christ, and who just happen to gather unter
the motto "Fish can not use guns".
Oh ghosh. Just writing it on paper is ridiculous, no?
Well, obviously not completely, if it comes from a master writer like PKD.
I survived through reading it for (too) many a page, carried by a sheer hope
that scores of people who claimed it to be a good work, were not complete
idiots, or that it all was not just an internet scam of the bigot Jehowah
Towards the end of the first volume of Valis, there is a beautiful story of
2 year old girl Sophia, who herself seems to be a voice of God. Not "seems",
she IS a voice of god, she knows things nobody else could now. PKD gives
some of his most hillarious lines here, pure joy to read!
Sophia eventually dies accidentally, or chose to die accidentally, but there
is a new child to be born, from the same parents-who are crazy weirdos, but
seem to have a place in the cosmic maze. The Rhipidon society is closely
At the end of the book is a list of 50 premises of the World and definitions
which are supposedly put there to help, but they rather scared me. They are
obviously a make of crack-pot. No discussion. I am quite afraid to go to the
2nd book of Valis, but probably I will be persistent, as I usually am, to
fathom the depths of Horselover Fat.