‚ÄùThree are the paths of the soul:
-One out: and Roam across the plaincivilised
-One back: Dwell with tribe and tent
-One in: turn an enemy's hate‚Äù[/list:u]~Unknown~[/i]
In this place there is nothing of what you call the
world. There are no buildings, there are no farms, there are no farmers, no families, only aching miles of expanse, life itself streaming towards the sky, radiating from open ground. You may travel far and wide and ne'er see a single soul.
From the horizon I come, A dustcloud has signaled my approach, you cannot hide in that wide open space, and anything that you can hide, cannot stay hidden for long. Day by day as survival takes it's toll on your defenses you shall realise yourself and be dragged kicking and screaming to the truth. For death is a fear that shall always far outweigh all other concerns, be thankful for that, for it is this blind terror within you that has pushed you forward, driven you up.
You are alone on the plains as even those you travel with cannot take care of you. Even should you not be brave enough to travel alone, understand that you will in time become an island. You cannot escape the fate that awaits you traveller, you have come here searching and thus you may never leave without finding. Until you have wrested your hands free from chains of vengeance, taken off the armour of security, until you have cast aside all that is of no use to you here, until you have touched the spirit of this place, it will haunt you, it will dog you and torment you. Onward! For she has answered to your cries for help. Upward! For she has thrown open the closed doors of consciousness. Even if you have chosen in jest, she shall care not, you have come to seek and shall find.
You will learn that there is much you cannot control outside of this circle of tents. Out among the Plains, whether alone or surrounded by people you shall come to see many things. That people do not trust someone who asks risks but does not take them upon themselves, You cannot lead without so doing. That when you most need help it shall be unavailable to you, You cannot truly stand until you stand on your own. That your words will fall on deaf ears, your sword shall cut only air and you shall be waylaid by those with less scruples than yourself, it is impossible to force the willing. You shall see me as I come closer, that I am alone, but yet I smile, For I have stood upon my own feet, I have lead by example, and I have avoided pointless conflicts.
You shall find me as I dismount at your camp stranger, that I am clad in plain clothes, that I carry only the baggage which I need to keep my health in all five spheres. You ask me of my travels, of the ruins you can see from afar, the ones at the edge of the desert. You tell me on the horizon these strange monoliths make words to you, and I can tell you that they are far stranger up close. You tell me of your chieftan, that he has ridden past these monuments and on one side were startling revelations, and on the other side were more still. Forgive my laughter, but these standing stones are reference points for many people, and each face has said the same thing to you. The toppled statues to the west of the wadi are a message you have yet to interpret. The cavern of scratchings to the far south, holds a message so alien even one such as I cannot interpret it.
Do you see your folly? Your monuments are on distant horizons and they have never changed. But the world is far more wide than the horizons. The sum total of your knowledge and experience is but a tiny drop in a vast ocean and yet you circle the ruins and these plains learning new things from the same things. It does me no pride to say to you that a new facet, a greater subtlety to an old wisdom after the umpteenth time, is not one tenth of a new wisdom.
Wherever you shall go, you carry your memories with you, the teachings of the monuments are available to you. You may reflect on them over and over and learn to translate into new languages; yes! This too was written on a monument many days from here, deep in the desert, where the sand turns black and the beasts fear to tread.
I see I have yet to crush your comfort here in this stateless place. Would it provoke you to know that these monuments were carved by human hands. Yes. For after the place of black sands the monuments begin to peter out, some repeat, some are still blank, and this deep into the desert there are signs which i cannot read. I have returned for one thing alone: a hammer and chisel, I can no longer make my journeys without the ability to add an echo in my own words, words that perhaps you may read one day. No, I have not come to stay, for the future is not here, it is out there on the plains, naked and honest, alive and free. Be content with your rut stranger, and may it cradle you no longer than is necessary. Yes the stormclouds gather, but rain and thunder do not trouble me as they once did, the gods are not vengeful with those who stand in defiance, this you shall learn.
As I ride out I bid you farewell, and I hope that you remember this day, I hope it nags at you the way the plains nag at me, and I hope it drives you out from your home and hearth and into the wilderness, screaming, seeking; clawing at the dirt, crawling to the creeping sands. You may think I wish to curse you, but if you would but pull the mask from your face and let your ears hear the sounds of the world without the filters of your armor stranger, then you too would see with your own eyes as it is, in all it's beauty, horrible or glorious.