The river of life has no fords. We simply cannot wade through shallow water on our way to the other side. To get to the other side we have to first learn to breathe under water and then dive deep. One life is almost never enough to master these skills. So, we keep dying again and again.
As we die, we assemble, like log booms on a river, into massive hordes of transmigrating souls.
Friendly neighborhood psychopomps – the mythical soul guides – like log drivers, direct us en masse to the other side. This is the safest passage that we can buy for the information that we carry within ourselves. Information is buoyant. The more we know, the more we have experienced, the less water-logged we are, and the faster we get to the other side. Otherwise, empty-minded, we sink into the deep and have to be dredged up through the silt and the rot.
Or maybe it’s the other way around. Must be.
Anyway, there are many living rivers in the world and many psychopomps working them –
Charon, of course, the ferryman of the river Styx; then there’s Jizo who works the Sai-no-kawara river-crossing; and, let us not forget, the ever-mystical Herman Hesse with his assistant Siddhartha on the banks of the river Rasa, a tributary of the Indus river. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t yet been to any of these underworlds, at least, not that I can remember. But I’ve been to the Armenian Highlands and that’s the Tir turf – a real old-school soul-guide, I must say.
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