April 03, 2005
Every picture tells a story
"Don't try to use what you learn from Buddhism to be a Buddhist;
use it to be a better whatever-you-already-are."
- His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
My sabbatical year is over and I realize that however I may go back to Asia and back to traveling again, I can never go back to this first time traveling in Asia. This trip is over. May the journey continue.
Have I learnt anything?
At least, that there is truth in reality. The challenge is not to run away from it.
That whenever I felt I found something very beautiful, it almost always resembled an earlier experience. It has been with me all the time, I was just no longer looking. My eyes have opened a little more once more.
That it requires determination and dedication to keep looking. Old habits are very strong.
That I owe much to the kindness of other people.
Here's an overview of most of my pictures. Please note that ALL these pictures are very much downsized in both size and quality. If you see a picture you'd like to have, you can download it as-is, or you can send me an e-mail with the filename of the picture (usually something like IMG_1234.jpg) and will send you a bigger, better quality version of it.
In an earlier post I noticed that it probably required more courage to come home, than to leave. I still feel that way. Maybe the wisdom contained in some of those famous quotes might help a little… Here's a couple I came across recently that spoke to me.. and yes, some are in contradiction to each other..
About traveling and coming home:
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes."
- Marcel Proust
"A man travels the world over in search of what he needs, and returns home to find it." - George Moore
"There is no unhappiness like the misery of sighting land (and work) again after a cheerful, careless voyage." - Mark Twain
To finalize, I've dropped the idea of the "Global Village" and replaced it with the Global Universe. The world, the real world has actually become bigger to me. The Global Village is mainly a virtual reality, which is an illusion after all, isn't it? Although it has validity from economical and political perspectives, as well as from a social perspective for the privileged, to the majority of the people of this world, it really doesn't exist. From a personal perspective the world has become bigger, not just because the wishlist of places to visit has become much longer, but rather because global reality has a lot more detail and depth which unfolds through experience --- it's a classic mistake after all, to confuse a model of reality with reality itself.
"The universe is a big place, perhaps the biggest." - Kilgore Trout (Kurt Vonnegut)
"It is not down in any map; true places never are." - Herman Melville
(See http://tripsource.com/html/quotes.htm for many more traveling quotes)