Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,
Welcome at a new episode of our wonderful Kai. This month we are on a journey along the ancient Silk Road. A renown trade-route straight through Asia. While we are on this journey we are (trying) to read a very nice and spiritual novel written by Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha. A story about a young Brahman-son who is on a quest for Enlightenment. A few days ago I told you that Siddhartha had found Kamala, a rich courtesan. Through Kamala he is attracted by beauty and wealth, because Kamala wants a lot of goods and more richness of him. Siddhartha becomes a man of the material world. And that made the connection with the ancient Silk Road.
I am a bit "stuck" on prompts about the Silk Road, as I told you earlier this month I hadn't thought that making a whole month about the ancient Silk Road was this difficult.
For today's episode I have chosen to share a part of "Siddhartha" with you. In this part of Siddhartha we see how he is "running" away from his home and his beautiful Kamala. In other words "he is running away from the world". Siddhartha has finally found insight in his life and that the life he lived as a wealthy merchant will not bring him the Enlightment he is looking for. Than the story takes a turn ...
[...] " Siddhartha walked through the forest, was already far from the city, and knew nothing but that one thing, that there was no going back for him, that this life, as he had lived it for many years until now, was over and done away with, and that he had tasted all of it, sucked everything out of it until he was disgusted with it. Dead was the singing bird, he had dreamt of. Dead was the bird in his heart. Deeply, he had been entangled in Sansara (cycle of aimless drifting, wandering or mundane existence), he had sucked up disgust and death from all sides into his body, like a sponge sucks up water until it is full. And full he was, full of the feeling of been sick of it, full of misery, full of death, there was nothing left in this world which could have attracted him, given him joy, given him comfort.
quiet as never before
even the birds
|Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse (cover)
on the bank of the river
dreaming away into oblivion
Then, out of remote areas of his soul, out of past times of his now weary life, a sound stirred up. It was a word, a syllable, which he, without thinking, with a slurred voice, spoke to himself, the old word which is the beginning and the end of all prayers of the Brahmans, the holy “Om,” which roughly means “that what is perfect” or “the completion.” And in the moment when the sound of “Om” touched Siddhartha’s ear, his dormant spirit suddenly woke up and realized the foolishness of his actions.
finally purified and without ego
I became wise
Siddhartha was deeply shocked. So this was how things were with him, so doomed was he, so much he had lost his way and was forsaken by all knowledge, that he had been able to seek death, that this wish, this wish of a child, had been able to grow in him: to find rest by annihilating his body! What all agony of these recent times, all sobering realizations, all desperation had not brought about, this was brought on by this moment, when the Om entered his consciousness: he became aware of himself in his misery and in his error. Om! he spoke to himself: Om! and again he knew about Brahman, knew about the indestructibility of life, knew about all that is divine, which he had forgotten.
|Brahmans Siddhartha and Govinda (painting by Scharkan, Deviant Art)