The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #34083   Message #460380
Posted By: Peter T.
11-May-01 - 09:43 AM
Thread Name: BS: (Another Classic Gem) In Search of Shangri-La
Subject: RE: BS: New Story - In Search of Shangi-La
It was cold in Curioso's dream. They were struggling through the whiteness, and every hour or so, the swirl would clear briefly and they would stop and breathe. In those few brief seconds of openness he would see -- or think he would see -- a slight movement of white against the white, at the edge of vision. It would almost certainly be Yamada, who was less surefooted than his Master, who was the master of whiteness, when he chose. And then the swirl would descend again, and they would struggle on.

"Homage to Vajradhara
Holder of the adamantine sceptre
Homage to the Spiritual Master
Holder of the lineage."

And he was young again, and beside him sat his brother, Dominic, and they were in the swirl of snow except it was now incense, and before them was the walnut wrinkled and coloured face of the beloved Geshe. And they were seeding Vajrusattvas throughout the universe, and bodhisattvas in the ten directions bowed towards them. But when they came in the mantra, the highest mantra, to the seed syllable PAMH, Dominic's mouth bled, and the white petalled lotus with the yellow corolla descended into dust.

And then it was after the betrayal, and he knocks on the grim door in Kathmandu, and there Dominic sits, as he has sat for the last year since Curioso brought him down catatonic from the mountain cave, and Curioso spoons soup into his mouth. And the whiteness is everywhere.

Curioso wakes, or thinks he wakes, sees Annette on guard, and then in his dream he sits up in terror, frozen. Beside her, his hair tied up in a three-tier hair knot, and wearing the 8 precious ornaments, emanating darkness, now hovers the White God Vajrasattva with Dominic's face; and the emanation reaches out over her, and she becomes a version of Dorje Nyemma, holding in her right hand the curved blade and in her left a blackened skull filled with blood.

And Curioso invokes Amoghasiddhi to his aid, but even the Conqueror Buddha is of no avail to one who is so lost, so powerful in darkness. He calls out for the compassionate traces of his Beloved Teacher, the Murdered Geshe, the Stain that can never be eradicated, but there is nothing. There is not even emptiness. He knows that the universe flees from a being who has committed mtsamsmdelas, the unbounded actions. In desperation, he picks up his rifle, and shoots the White God, and the God breaks up into fragments, and then into ice, and then into squalling snow, and then it is just the two of them again, struggling inthe storm up the creviced path, and then they find Tirseng.

And then Curioso wakes up for real. He almost screams in relief, but only shakes himself. He comes over to where Annette is on guard, and quietly sits beside her, on the edge of the morning.

"Chere?" she says.

"He is out there, close. He seems to be feeding off the primal Bon energy in this region, it is very strong. We should not have come here."

She smiled. "You forget that we had no choice. When your plane dies, it dies." And besides, we would have missed this --"

She gestured out beyond the ledge, and the storm had gone. It was a beautiful morning in all the ten directions. The sky of pure blue crystal emanated over the distant greyblue peaks and the rippled snow dunes below their feet. The air was penetrated with clear wind and high sunlight. They sat and looked at it for a few moments, the vigorous cold breeze in their faces.

"Breakfast, I think" he said. "Let me see what I can do."