A humorous yet profound 'collaboration' between myself, Bright Cloud, a renegade Budhist monk from Bhamo, Burma who enjoys observing the nuns undress in their 'sacred nakedness before God' from his perch in the great Banyan tree; and our Translator, all of whom are given a preface. As I mentioned, though funny and even absurd, their are points if true profundity, the seriousness escaping, as do our writers, from pages one would least expect.
Kevin Hull Writer & Poet
At first an Audio-Book, then a paperback, this is one of my personal favorites, not because of anything tangible . . . Not just because of the absurd situation either, but because it was so enjoyable and liberating to try to bridge east and west, and to watch the characters write themselves.
I hope someday to give copies away -- there are many quotes from obscure, extant mystical texts which may help in a greater understanding between peoples.
Example: A Hindu greeting: "I salute the Divinity in you." Another, as God's first utterance: "I am One and wish to be Many." Proving that loneliness is the first primal emotion behind all creativity. . .Again from the Chinese: ' the sacred square inch in your forehead.' Compare to: "If thine eye be single thou whold body shall be full of light." And: "The Kingdom lies within." Finally: 'Jihad' or 'Holy War' ( a misnomer if ever one existed ) is the battles each of us must fight to clean ourselves within. We, then, it is clear, are the battlefields, expected to develop and harmonize with our true unity: Love and Beauty and Creativity being the true weapons with which we are to fight... With a clear understanding of the wisdom literature that is to this day locateable, Humanity as a whole would reflect on the filth in our own hearts and cease the idiotic practice of strapping on bombs and destroying innocent spirits whose essence is our own. Not much to laugh at -- but it can be done. No one wants another uneducated preacher to fill our minds with ridiculous doctrine. Better to laugh at the entire errors of our outward gaze.....
O well, this, at least, is how I feel, and I am slightly encouraged by the greater awareness I ocassionally discover.
It seems we have forgotten all that we share: hunger, thirst, love and physical mortality. Our love such as it is has become twisted, standing ready to excuse our every atrocity -- as if we had zero responsibility for the world we have created...
So, with love and common aspects of my ignorance, I sign off for now,
EAST BY WEST
"From my comfortable perch in the Banyan Tree, I watch the nuns undress, and see, in their splendid nakedness, a common unhappiness because they live in a world of violence and fear, faithlessness and concealment: my prayers go out to their beauty and love, and wish with all my Being that they could live in a world worthy of their sacrifice -- and that would gaze into the mirror and with joy trace their loveliness, unashamed and content before the perception of such a wonderful creator." Brigh Cloud