Interested in Language
I am at a loss what the bold text might mean. Can anybody help me?
"Father," said he, "don't poison your last hours by these delusions! If there be a God, it is certain that He never trapped man as you say He did."
Arthur Horne interrupted: "God is a just God."
"Then why did he make vermin?" retorted the barrister.
A long and labored explanation followed from the excellent Horne, who never suspected that the repartee was not part of the argument.
It all wound its weary way back to the old subject of the sure and certain damnation of John Bird.
The latter paid no heed. His human feelings swamped all else. He knew instinctively at that moment the supreme human truth that the son is the father, literally identical of one substance. Also, in the great presence of death there is no place for religion of any kind. The sham of it becomes patent -- a hideous masque and revelry of mocking thoughts. Even where it is the strongest of all drugs, it lowers, hypnotic cloud or levin of storm, shines never as a sun of life. The Pagans knew; try and write even a letter of condolence to a friend bereaved, and you will know it too.
Aleister Crowley, The Death Bed Repentance, 1918
Not a Teacher
Besides its literal meaning (that this particular father and son are alike), it is likely a reference to the religious belief in the "consubstantiality" of the Triune God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit are believed to be of the same substance: one being, not three.