Journey - an extract from the book


Journey - A Meditative Story


This is an unusual title for a short story.
I am aware of this.
I chose it on purpose.

The title was added to this story after I have been through it. After I have finished the rough writing of it; I was in the middle of editing it, when this title came into my mind. I listened to music in the background. It helped me to see the story as if I was reading it for the first time. As if it was not what I had written. I let the words touch me. Not just follow the action. I let the meaning of it touch me; the meaning of the story; the meaning of the words. I did not think about the meanings. I felt the meanings. Deep inside me the words touched me; resonated with me. This was a new experience and this had meaning for me.

If you, the reader of this story now, want to have a similar experience, you can. It will not be the same for you as it was for me. You are different. Everyone is different. The words will have a slight different meaning for every reader. Of this I am aware. You have not had the same experiences in your life up to this point. You do not have the same meanings for the words. But deep inside the words have a meaning that you will understand. Do not try to understand the words as you have learned their meaning. Try to understand them by feeling the meaning.

It is your choice. You can just read the story as you have always read stories. Then just ignore the rest of this introduction and go on. Read the story where it starts. You are free to do as you feel; free in your choice and free in your experiences. You can stay with your experiences you had up to now. As you wish. Or try this as a new experience. You can feel the words. Let the words touch you. Let their meanings touch you.


Enjoy this experience. It might not be noticeable to you. You are still thinking too much about the words. Just feel them. Let them guide you. When you’re ready, you may begin.



I was becoming aware ……………… suddenly aware …………………… aware of myself …………… walking …………… walking again ……………… always walking ……………… always.

But something was different this time.
Yes, it was cold and windy as before. It is always cold and windy when I walk.
But I was holding something in my arms this time. Holding it tight; but loosely too. Holding it so that I won’t loose it; but not too tight as not to squeeze it and break it this way.
I looked down into my arms. I saw a face. The face of a baby. MY baby. It smiled at me. I smiled back. It was the only thing that I noticed right now. It was warm. I was keeping it warm in this cold wind while I walked along. I felt the love of the baby streaming into me. This is what I had missed so long and now it was here right in my arms. I wasn’t alone anymore. I loved it. Now even more then ever that I could remember having loved anything. I wasn’t alone anymore.
No, I wasn’t alone anymore at all. I heard walking sounds behind me. I heard them in front of me. I heard them beside me too. I looked up. I was surprised. I wasn’t alone at all in this cold wind. There were a lot of people all around me. All walking with me. The same direction, the same cold wind. I wasn’t alone.
Looking to my right I saw a man walking beside me. He had his head bowed to keep it out of the wind. He must have noticed me looking at him as he suddenly looked over to me – and smiled at me. Just like the baby had smiled. And now I recognized him. I became aware of who he was. This man, tired from walking, tired from fighting the cold wind, shabby and worn out looking as if he had been on the travel for a long time – this man was ………………… the father of my baby.
His smile was so full of love toward me I just had to smile back with a short deep look into his loving eyes. I turned my head back to the baby in my arms and we both smiled at each other again, continuing the walking and fighting the cold wind. I do not remember really. But I just know – this man is MY man. I guess you call that a husband. I do not remember how and when we met, if we had a joining ceremony. But I knew for sure – this man and I belonged together. And the baby I carried was ours. We were on this walk together. I wasn’t alone anymore!
Slowly I began to remember more. We still moved along in the cold wind. The love of the baby and the man next to me let me forget the cold. The other people around me were also “family”. We all were one big group. We all were moving along together. To the same place. A place we were out of the wind, out of the cold. Moving toward a place where we were safe. And loved. And together. All not alone anymore.


The first of our group arrived down at the beach. Excitement all around. Children rushing in between the ones arriving. Touching them. Happy shouting. Calling names. Asking questions. Greeting friends and family. Pulling the arrived ones along into the middle of them all. Welcoming them. Home. They were home. Finally. After the cold and windy and barren plains that led to this cliff and beach. Warm welcome. Happiness. Shelter. Comfort. Love. Not alone. None of them. And plants. I recognized them just now. At the foot of the cliff was a band of green. Plants. Food they grew here. And things they got from the water. And no wind. Warm. Food. Love This was shelter. This IS home. OUR, yes, MY home. I was home now. All this was home.
We were led along the beach. Surrounded by children and adults alike happily shouting. Excited at us arriving. Welcoming us. Leading us to the middle of the beach, the curve of the cliff. Pushing, shoving to catch a glimpse of everyone that has arrived. Touching. Lovingly. Welcoming. But no one touched me or my man or my baby. That was different. There was something different for us. Not only for me. This I did not understand. But it was this way. I observed it closely. It was this for sure. No one dared to touch my man, the baby or me now. They reached their hands toward us. But they did not touch us. We were welcomed the same, but different. More distant. More fear? More respect? Why? What was so different? Not alone, yet alone in this group. Because something was different.
As we got closer the people in front stepped aside so we could see where we were headed. I was surprised. Again. This was not what I had expected. Had I expected anything? Was it just not old memories suggesting to expect a certain thing to be there in front of us when we arrive? I have to remind me again that this is new, this is different. I can not know what comes. I can not know what to expect. I see everything for the first time. I experience it all for the first time. The first time since I became aware of myself. Again. Yes, this keeps nagging at me. That it is only again. Not totally new, but still new. It was different.
What I saw surprised me. Right in front of us stood an old woman. Not old and shrivelled and bent like the old women that had arrived with me. This woman was different. She stood there upright like a young one. Fully aware of herself. Of what she was. Her difference. Her power. She stood there with certain knowingness. Powerful. Pride. But not in an abusive way. Pride and power. Fully aware of what she resembled. What she was in relation to the other people around her. Respect. Yes, looking at her you felt respect towards her. For all that she was. She knew of her being different and accepted it. Respected it. For herself. And from the others around her. Nothing more. Respect.
Her hair was long and white and slightly moving in the light breeze coming in from the water. Her dress was decorated colourful. More colourful than all the dresses of the other people. It all made her stand out from the others around. Alone in the group. She wasn’t taller. But she looked like a giant. Power and strength came from her. This made her tall. Actually she was a small woman like most of the women around me. Smaller than me. But she was special. Different. And again I was surprised. My man rushed toward her and hugged her, holding the baby in between them. Held her tight. Over-towering her for a moment.
No one interfered. No surprise. No shock. No angry shouts. Instead happy cheers. Just as this woman was different, so my man was different. This I understood clearly. If any of the others would have done this, it would be different. But for him it was the only thing to do. The right thing to do. To greet this woman this way. The only way for him to greet her. He was like her in the way she was different to the others a round. He let go of her and took my hand. Put the baby in my arm and then shoved me slightly closer to this woman. I hesitated. She saw this. I saw the knowing look in her eyes. She understood me. My hesitation. My respect of her difference. Understood her difference to the others and to me. She made the first step. She hugged me. Carefully. Softly. Lovingly. Welcoming.
I was overwhelmed. I suddenly felt weak. Not from exhaustion. Not because of the long walk. Not from the change from the cold windy barren plain to this warm loving place. I felt weak because I was allowed to be weak. Because she was so strong. Not strong to overpower me. Just strong so I could be weak. She took my baby while still hugging me with her other arm. I let her take it. It was safe with her. I trusted her. I trusted her to know that it was my baby and that I trusted it to her. I trusted her like I trusted my man. In this they were the same. Different, yet alike. She would protect my baby and be strong for it just as she was strong for me. To be weak. To let go. To be myself. To be safe. Home. Not alone. Loved. Supported. Like her arm supported me right now and held my baby safe in her other arm. We were all one. Not alone.
Tears streamed down my face. I was allowed to be weak and the tears showed that. I let myself be weak. But it wasn’t a shameful weak. It was a relieved weak. Relieved at being home at last. At being in this woman’s arms. At feeling her strength pass into me. She held me and passed her strength. To me. To the people seeing this. An uplifting strength. This was something I knew. I had felt this kind of strength before. Passing of strength. Sharing of strength. Strength that was good for both. For the one giving and the one receiving. Somewhere deep inside me I realized that I also passed strength back to the old woman. She felt this. She accepted this. She not only saw my difference on the outside. She felt I was different inside. And accepted it. Welcomed it. Supported it. I felt safe. Loved. Sheltered. HOME. One with her. One with me. Not alone. Not anymore.


The dream came again. But I was not alone. I felt the old woman dream with me. This was new. This was good. I let go of the fear of this dream. I knew the dream. I feared the dream. I had always feared the dream. I needed not fear the dream now. I was not alone. The strength flowed into me. Sheltered me. Showed me that I was not alone. Not alone in this fearful dream. Not now. Not this time. This time was different. So many things were different now. But the dream was not. It was the same. Fearful. Alone. And yet not alone. The old woman was with me. Seeing. Dreaming. Sharing. Knowing. Sheltering.
Again I was walking. Alone. I had seen bad things. Things that caused me to be alone. Things that wanted me to be alone. Things I wanted to simply forget. Not see it. Not again and again. Seeing it won’t change it. I knew. I was alone. As always. I was walking alone over this plain. Cold. Windy. Alone. But something was different. I was aware suddenly of this. New. Different. I was alone. Yet not alone. I could feel this. Knew this. Aware of this. The old woman was with me now. Following. Seeing me. I saw her as she was seeing me. I saw me with her eyes. Seeing me walking alone over the cold and windy plane. So alone. And feeling this. Aloneness. Again. As always. Yet not alone now. There was something different this time. She was with me. Sharing my aloneness. We were together alone.
She knew. She felt. I had seen bad things. She had seen bad things. She wanted to know if they were the same bad things. She made me go back. Back to the beginning of the dream. To what I tried to forget. I resisted. I feared. I did not want to see it again. It won’t change. It won’t go away by seeing it. I knew. She did not know. Not yet. I wanted her to know this. I needed her to know this. To let go of asking to go back to it. So I let her lead me back to the beginning of this dream. Of the fear. Of the memories. Of the time of being alone. So alone.
She was strong. And loving. I need not fear what I will see. I might be alone. I might fear. But yet I was not alone, I was sheltered. Strengthened through her. She was with me. Seeing what I feared. What I knew. What can not be changed. The water. Rising. Endlessly rising. She saw it too. She had seen this before. She told me she knew of the water. Of it rising. So high. Higher than ever before. Flooding everything. The beach. The green plants. The shelter. The holes in the cliff. Ever rising. Covering everything. People fleeing up the paths. Running. Running to escape the water. Up on the plain. Many made it. Not many enough. All this was the same thing we had seen. We shared what we had seen.


While walking I told her of what I knew. I told her of other people. Not like her. Living different. They were so different. But they were people just like her. Only living. Wanting to live. Not knowing how to live. Live WITH the things around them. Most people did not know how to live with the things. They only used the things. Only receiving. Only taking. Never giving back. Always wanting more. They did not understand. They did not want to know. They resisted change. Even if they knew. Even if they understood. Even when they saw what was coming. They resisted to change. They went on with their way of life. It was what they knew. What they liked. What they enjoyed. What they had created. Wanting to live better. Wanting to live easier. Wanting to live more. All for them. Only for them. Never giving anything back.
These people were creative. This was good. It helped them live good. But they wanted more then was good for all. Always wanting more. Not a few. All of them. It was their way of living. Always wanting. Always creating. Creating new wants. Wanting new creations. Using everything. Never giving back what they used. No sharing. Only wanting. Only taking. Creating to get things. For them alone. Not for others. Not for all. Not to give back. I told her of things she had never known. There was no need for her to know of these things. She did not need these things. They were not made for her way of life. But they destroyed her way of living. These things destroyed everything. So she had to know. She had wanted to know why. This was why.
It was not in her control. Nothing she had done. Nothing any of her people had done. But it would destroy her. Her people. Her place. Her life. Everything. It was those other people she had never known of. That was the reason for what I knew. I was aware of this. I had wanted to forget it. I could not change it. Not when it was like this. It was too late. For me. For my baby. For the old woman. For her people. I showed her. I did not want to show her. I did not like it. I wanted to forget it. If she was to understand she needed to know, to see. This made me go on. I told her. I showed her in pictures she did not understand. She saw the things, but had no names for them. I told her. I explained to her. She tried to understand. Not how the things worked. That was not important. But how they effected her.


I woke. I was aware. A new time. A new morning. My man was still next to me. He looked at me and smiled. I smiled back. The old woman still had me in her arms. She was awake too. She smiled too. But different. Knowing. She had been with me. The whole night she had been with me. She knew what I knew. And she smiled. She knew that there was something different. For her. For me. Someone passed my baby to me. I took it and fed it. It had been taken care off. The whole night. So I could do what I did this night. Learn. Know something new. For a new start. Like a baby I had learned. Slow, but I learned. And I had not been alone. I will never be alone now. Never again.
This was really a new time. A new beginning already now. I could now understand what the people talked. This was the first thing I was aware of. I not only felt the love they shared with me. They could tell me in words and I understood. And I could give it back to them. With action. With words. With my whole being. Like a baby. Not alone anymore. All one. And they respected me. Like the old woman. I was different. She was different. Yet we were alike. We had shared our different ways of being strong in that one night. And we both had gained. Not only for ourselves. For all.
Both we shared what we knew. The people took from us. Our strength. Our knowledge. And they gave back. They need not be taught this. The already knew. This was the difference. All knew what I had been trying to teach. Respect. Love. Care. Shelter. Give and take. The water might come. The white wind might come. But this was already gained. This could not be taken away anymore. I added this to my knowledge. Everyday. I lived with these people. I was one of them. I was one with them. They were one with me. It would not matter what happened with the water. With the wind.
I took all that they gave to me. And I gave back all that I got. This was now a part of my memory. This I would love to remember. Not a memory to fear. Not a memory to forget. With this I would never be alone again. No matter how many new starts might come. I was not alone anymore. Never ever again. These people, this life will always be with me now. This was a different time. This was a new time. This was a new