June 27, 2005
This is the Palace of the Winds in Jaipur, India, otherwise known as the pink city. It's not a real palace at all, just a thin set-like facade of a palace, built (with 953 windows) so that the curious ladies of the royal household could easily see what was going on in the world down below.
The rest of the royal city of Jaipur is equally as enchanting:
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At the edges of our days, in the corner of
the eye, a different world lies very close to this one we inhabit, yet see so little. I have just visited Myst for the first time
two nights ago, and found some of the magic
that I have sought in my own painting all my life, with considerable joy and surprise. Robyn, you and your brother have caught some of the magic in your hands with this work, and I will continue with interest. Design, myth, Robert Lous Stevenson, Charles Macdonald, Tolkein, C.S.Lewis, L. Frank Baum, Kenneth Graham,
A.A.Milne, these were the landmarks of my world young and remain so. The inner beauty
and color of our ancestral stories remains,
even in this hasty and rather addled time.
Music and mystery help, and rewake the
spirit that God surely meant us to keep alive. There is a mountain in Japan with 88 temples on it, many of them very ancient. Each year, spiritual pilgrims walk from temple to temple in a long quiet pilgrimage in the pines, fog bound, no sound other than the drip of mist in the dark trees. It is a parable and a similar journey to the ones you have offered us in the environments, and keep working on i see, in music and other ways. I seek the same in my art, and in thought and words.
I look forward to seeing much more
Lost Path - Journey to the 88 Mountain Temples
Above the silent path,
Ancient Pines rise through the mist,
My steps make no sound,
And silence spreads
Ahead and behind.-
I am lost,
Here, alone a the mountain path
Among forested peaks.
I have nothing
From the world below
And my life before-
It was a dream,
The "I" others knew
And tried to judge, to know,
Was an illusion of their needs.
Now I float silent in the fog,
Through the trees,
And desires fade, and are lost
Unknown as the Path
Behind and before.
Some count the temples
And have a journey
With a beginning
And an end,
I don't even remember
Taking the step
Just before this one,
Or any other breath,
Than the one I breath
This is all there is.
Christopher S. Gerlach
There are 88 surviving ancient Zen temples on Mount Shikoku in Japan, they have survived hundreds of years of tumult and turmoil in the world below, and many date from the feudal days of the Shogunate and before. Now, and then, pilgrims made a trek among them all on a journey that the devout made to cleanse themselves and their spirit of the desires and fears and pains of human existence here in the world below. High on the pine clad peaks, in remote silent peace, these ancient temples continue to exist, many built of time darkened wood, with echoing halls, fog girt terraces looking out on vast vistas of mist, and unguessed distance, their great bells sounding across the valleys and beckoning to the traveler to hurry before nightfall. The pilgrims can travel and stay often at these remote temples without charge, and each year some pilgrims return again and again, to find and restore their peace and tranquility in times which often know little of either, and crave for both. Few westerners know of this sacred mountain, and its treasury of history and peace. On such a pilgrimage, a walk into the clouds, one can think on and consider one’s life, past, present and future, and all the trials and pains which often arise in our waking and dreaming self fade and find balance with the “just now” feeling, the allness of walking through a pine forest in the fog, with no past and no future, and even no desires or fears, just being. To find such peace is a gift, and it is a gift to share this with you.
Posted by: Chris Gerlach | Jul 10, 2005 9:18:02 AM