These days I am reading a truly unique book , a bit later I will post my review. However now I cannot hold myself back from posting a true gem of it, a beautiful experience of the author, Daniel Andreev – a Russian poet and religious thinker of the middle of the XX century. The book itself is called “Roza Mira” (“The Rose of the World”, “Роза Мира”), it was written mostly in prison at Stalin’s time, and is about religion in the modern world.
The extraordinary experience I am quoting here reminds me a lot of the Enlightenment of the main character Herman Hesse in his famous novel Siddhartha. This is the unique experience of ONENESS, of feeling oneself being not only the part and parcel of the whole, but actually being this WHOLE…
“In my life such an experience took place on the moonlit night of July 29, 1931, on the banks of the Nerussa, a small river in the Bryansk Forest. I usually try to be alone when in Nature, but that time it so happened that I had taken part in a camping trip with a small group.
We reached the banks of the river at the close of a hot, cloudless day. We took a leisurely dip, then gathered brush, and, building a fire two meters from the quietly flowing river under the canopy of three old willows, prepared a simple meal. The sky darkened. A low July full moon glided out from behind the oaks. Little by little the conversations and stories died down; one by one my companions fell asleep around the crackling wood. I was left awake at the fire, lazily waving a branch to ward off the mosquitoes.
When the moon, noiselessly moving behind the finely patterned, leafy branches of the willow, entered the range of my vision, those hours that come close to being the most wonderful of my entire life began. Breathing softly, having laid back on a handful of hay, I heard the Nerussa flowing not behind me, a few paces back, but as if through my own soul. That was the first unusual thing I noticed.
Everything on Earth and everything that must exist in the heavens poured exultantly and noiselessly through me in a single stream. In bliss barely supportable by the human heart, I felt as if slowly revolving, graceful spheres glided through me in a universal dance, and everything I could think of or imagine merged in a jubilant oneness.
The ancient forests and clear rivers, the people sleeping by the fire, the peoples of countries near and far, cities waking up and busy streets, cathedrals with sacred icons, seas tossing tirelessly, and steppes with blowing grass— everything indeed was within me that night, and I was within everything. I lay with eyes closed, and beautiful white stars, large and blossoming, not at all like those we are used to seeing, also floated along the world-turned-river like white water lilies.
Although the sun was not visible, it was as if it, too, were flowing somewhere just outside the range of my vision. Everything was suffused not by its glow but by a different light, one I had never seen before. Everything flowed through me and at the same time rocked me, like a child in a cradle, with all-soothing love.
In trying to express in words such experiences, one understands better than ever the poverty of language. How many times have I attempted through poetry and prose to convey to others what happened to me that night! And I know that no attempt, including this one, will ever succeed in communicating to anyone else the true significance, dimensions, and profound effect that occurrence had on my life.”
Sharings from Daniil Andreev to be continued…