The Voice, by Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould

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                           - 28 -

"And now we're ready for the fourth plane of reality, the
culmination and synthesis of all preceding experience." I
said, realizing how seriously Rick had taken my first book.
"But nobody can predict what it will look like or when it
might happen. If it does happen."

"It will happen. And with our technology we're prepared
for it."

I must have looked confused. "What I was talking about
was a spiritual awakening. Not a new use for electronics."

"It's what's in store for us. The synthesis of everything
we've been-projected outside our heads and given life. You
know, the awaited fourth dimension. Look, I'm not a
scientist, I'm a news manager, but there are people who can
materialize the wounds of Jesus Christ, right down to the
nails in their hands and everybody can see them without our
chips. It's called stigmata and it's been going on now for
at least 2000 years. People have been reporting UFOs for two
millennia, others see the Blessed Virgin. At least with a
little help from our chips everybody can control what they
see."

"And you can send that signal from here?" I asked,
needing to confirm my suspicions.

Rick nodded, hoping that such powers would impress me
beyond question.

"Then you're absolutely insane." I responded.

Rick slumped. "What are you talking about?"

"Look at the news. It's chaos already and you want to go
and turn everything into make-believe?"

"It's just the beginning. When we get started . . . "
Rick said, his voice turning ever more serious. "You saw the
monitors back there in my office. It gets worse every day.
People hate each other and they're tearing the world apart.
At least this way they can think they have a life."