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Astral Codex Ten Podcast

Sep 4, 2022


The Prophet in his wanderings came to Cragmacnois, and found the Bishop living in a golden palace and drinking fine wines, when all around him was bitter poverty. The Bishop spent so long feasting each day that he had grown almost too fat for his fine silk robes.

“Woe unto you!” said the Prophet, “The people of Cragmacnois are poor and hard-working, and they loathe the rich and the corrupt. Rightly do they hate you for spending the Church’s money on your own lavish lifestyle.”

“Actually,” said the Bishop, “my brother the Prince lets me use this spare palace of his and its well-stocked wine cellar. If I refused, he would just give it to someone else, or leave it empty. I’m not stealing church resources, and there’s no way to divert the resources to help the poor. And I am secure in my faith, and won’t be turned to hedonism by a glass of wine here and there. So what’s wrong with me enjoying myself a little?”

“It is said,” said the Prophet, “that Caesar’s wife must be not only pure, but above suspicion of impurity. A good reputation is worth more than any treasure. Fat as you are, nobody will believe you are untainted by the temptations of wealth. Give the golden palace back to your brother, and live in a hovel in the woods. Only then will you earn the people’s trust.”


The Prophet in his wanderings came to Belazzia, and found the Bishop living in a hovel and wearing a hair shirt. He spent so long in prayer each day that he barely ate, and seemed so dangerously thin that he might fall over at any moment.

“Woe unto you!” said the Prophet. “For the people of Belazzia are rich and sophisticated, and they mock you for your poverty and uncleanliness. Does the Church not give you enough funds to build a golden palace and wear silk robes? If you were the most resplendent citizen of this nation of splendor, would they not take you more seriously?”