We forged our gods of iron, of earth, of anger, all to the steady tac-tac-tac of an altar drum. We shaped our gods with passion, with patience, with a care born of the salt-taste of bitter memory.
We crafted our gods with the best of our learning, the hard-won wisdom of our grandmothers, the practiced insight of our lah mahs and shamankas.
We fashioned them from story, from fable, our most sacred truths, our wildest imaginings. We clothed them in myth, in fantasy, the harvest of a million hearths.
Finally, we gave completely of ourselves: our power, our strength, our volition, all that we held precious, or holy, all that we dared to hope.
Thus emptied, we sat at the feet of our creations’ cold, burnished forms, and begged that just a little might be returned.
And by the flickering of the copper lamps we shivered, and whispered among ourselves, ‘Where was it that we erred?’
For the gods, the powers, the kut, these are our children. And we have birthed them all with madness, for ours is the human tribe.
Jai Mah! Jai Ka’tamalah! Jai Komun! Jai Shalam’biba! Jai Mah!
– The Thunder of Falling Water,
Vajan’ji, Byon of the Jade Tiger.