Episode 3 – House of Solitude
Inside the cave, I took a corner and began to control my breathing; following Yoga from the school of Dignaga which had principle of the ultimate knowledge could only be gained through Yoga. I remember a teaching from Book of Sang Hyang Kamahayanikan1.
If you were on the mountain,
Inside a cave,
On the edge of the ocean,
Inside a house or Vihara2
Even in the middle of the graveyard,
And any various places
Build the house of Sunya3
House of Solitude…
And so, I explore my world, my time and space, as much I could with my old age. Would I get the answer from my pas?
The scent from Pendekar Melati still lingered, it made me hard to concentrate my mind to reach antman4, a condition without consciousness and without soul, or sabhava5, the highest state of mind; but still, I could reach bhavana6, meditating state that develop the mind.
Were they looking for me after 50 years passed because the Massacer of a Hundred Martial Artist? In the beginning, I thought that those who came after me were families, descendants, or even students of those whom I killed. In the worlds of martial arts, the story of revenge is not a strange thing.
But in the Massacre of One Hundred Martial Artis, every men and women came without being forced by me and the fight happened fair and square. Even I was unbeatable, every one died honorably as warrior. Even people who belonged to the black faction, who were never been respected but feared, they souls were like being purified because they died in a fair battle, unlike what they always did in the past.
I just realized that the event that I just experienced might have no relation with the Massacre of One Hundred Martial Artists. But there is a possibility, that that event was used for a certain purpose. I had left the noisy world for far too long, I don’t know any situation that is currently going on that had relation with me being hunted. Furthermore, the noisy world of common people was never in my interest.
The problem was, the men who surrounded me and rained down arrows on me were wearing military uniform, men from military; even though the group of assassins who entered the cave were wearing black clothes without any unit badge, I knew that they were special troops who were trained to do certain duty.
The five leaders were clearly officers who lead the troops. Were they from a kingdom that was owned by Syailendra Dynasty?
When I left the world of martial arts and mixed myself in the noisy world for 25 years, there was turbulence happened on the Yawabumi, which mad the younger brother of the King Samaratungga, Balaputradewa, escaped to Suwarnadwipa and finally became one of the king of Sriwijaya Kingdom.
Until I left the noisy world and disappeared to the jungle, the eastern side of Yawabumi had been conquered by Jatinigrat, son-in-law of Samarattungga who then will be known as Rakai Pikatan.
I was not really sure what was happening, were they fighting because of marriage problem? That Jatinigrat who believed in Shiva married the daughter of Samarattungga who held Buddhist faith? Did the religious difference become the source of the trouble?
I considered the religious difference between Balaputradewa who was believed in Buddha Mahayana and Jatiningrat who believed in Shiva should not be a proble, because for the common people, both of religions were nothing more than just foreing religions that came along with foreigner. If then their King believed in foreign religion, and obliged their people to do religious ceremonies of those foreign religions, the common people who loved to live in peace would not be mind to do it for their own safety and peace. In the daily life of those commoners, the different in religion was not a problem; on the contrary, for the leader of the common people, religion was used as sign to distinguish their own faction and others. As for me, the conflict between leaders was just a struggle for power. Religion was just a reason to gain followers as many as they could. That kind of thing, for me, was a disgusting cunning scheme.
I disappeared in 846. At that time, Balaputradewa had gone, but Buddhist religion still remained, even spread out, because common people did not reject it. Even Pramodawardhani, the daughter of Samarattungga who was a Buddhist; Queen Consort Jatiningrat who belived in Shiva, in 824 built Temple Jinalaya of Kamulan Bhumisabhara7 that had meaning of ten steps to reach Buddha. That was the reason why I always had opinion that the leader of a nation was often became a victim of the power struggle who was done by the people behind the curtain, who fought for influence in the name of religion. When I disguised myself as stonecutter, I was once working to build temple of Shiva even temple of Budha Mahayana, and even though their located not far from the other, there was no conflict among their belivers. I even often astounded by the Acarya8 who could mix the beauty of Shiva and Buddha when building the temple.
When I disappeared, the temple jinalaya of Kamulan Bhumisambhara has been finished building, the humongous 10 levels temple was filled with statues and carving from the story and teaching of Buddha. When it was begun to be built, around 820, I volunteered myself as one of hundreds of artisan who were to carve the wall with those story, by doing that I learn about the teaching even more, and I did not expect that those teaching had relation with my martial arts. From the bottom to the top, Kamulan Bhumisabhara temple described the searching of mankind upon the meaning of life, and the desire inside the body had to be fought with consciousness to reach enlightenment, and in enlightenment state there is no more form, no more self, there is only void indescribable by any language.
It is no wonder that the Shapeless arts was considered as the perfection in the world of martial arts. Everything was carved beautifully on the Kamulan Bhumisabhara, from the mortal life on the lowest level as the fulfillment for desire, to the form of advancement of life steps by steps on each level, towards the Stupa9 on the top of it that pointed up to the limitless sky. The shapeless art was like the limitless sky for the world of martial arts, only those who has been freed from any kind of form could master the shapeless arts.
I opened my eyes. I haven’t reached the enlightenment yet. But now, at least I feel more relaxed. At least I found my way back in the middle of the nature after I shut myself for 25 years inside the cave. If my calculation was correct, I am now in the year 871 on the Yawabumi. I took a deep breath and breathed it out.
Returned with a very slow pace. Do I really have to come back to the world of martial arts for once again? There were still too much mysteries that need to be solved.
I did not know for how long I have drowned myself deep in my meditation. Meditation released us from the time and space of human’s perspective, but it was clear that my body still inside the cave that was seemed to have been inhibited by ancient people. The cave that was still clean, as if someone left it yesterday. I saw the moving picture on the cave wall. i had many experiences to read various books of martial arts, and with ease, I could imagine the movements from this pictures. I would say that those movements were shapeless, but they were more like unshaped, yet. Were those dancing movements? I wasn’t sure. But those moves were born from the deepest thought that represented souls before people communicated through language.
I watched those pictures inside the cave again. I lifted up the lit torch to brighten the surrounding, the dance of the fire made those pictures moved. Hmmm… those ancient people who inhibited the cave perfectly understood the basic of movements. With the basic movements, one could dance, fight, and even meditate, just by understanding the core movements. But what was core movement exactly? It was stillness in the movement and movement in stillness. Just like my Shapeless arts, the center was in the mind. I quickly sweep the movement that was drawn on the cave wall and mastered them.
I quickly went out, jumped and flew to the open air. I did not fell down like I was expecting, because my body became so light, even lighter than when I use body enlightening technique. My hands spread out straight to the left and right with my fingers tightened; my legs were tightened too and straight. I was like a statue with my hands spread wide, but I did not quickly fell downwards, in fact, I felt like I was defying the law of physics. I descended and spinning slowly, spinning and keep spinning. As if I was out of the world and became one with the universe.
I heard the humming of the priest in my ears, like the sound that dictated the speed of my descending. I felt like moving, but I was kept still; like I was standing still but moving around, but I didn’t think that it was both. I felt like exploring the house of emptiness, while remembering Samvarodaya-tantra.
Inside his own home
In the place well hidden inside the mountain, cave, jungle, beach or even graveyards
In the Temple of Mother Devi
At the place where two rivers meet
The highest reach is the theatre inside the rotation
That was me, like the rotating theatre because two rivers were joined together inside my universe; the rotation that gave the eternal movement. For all night long, I was rotating without feeling the rotation and flew downwards so lightly until I safely landed on earth when the sun was rising.
The eastern sky still painted in violet when I bounced up from stones to stones toward the rocky area. The mist faded with the morning light and the whole steep stone wall was slowly painted in golden color. I left the singing birds in the jungle and I saw from above the vast green jungle that had hid me for 25 years; The vast jungle that I left behind to breathe the air of green jungle of the world of martial arts again. Before I arrived on the peak, I turned sideways and running along the walls to return to the civilization. The river of the martial arts existed in the same time and space as the common world even the two were different, it made the world of martial arts felt like a fable for the common people.
I ran so fast, flew invisibly like a shadow that made common people only felt as if something passed them by but never knew exactly what that was. So I began to meet with the carpenter, fruit picker, poacher, and hunter, but I just passed them by, so that their lives would not be bothered. The world of martial arts, even though it was a pleasant story to fill the free time, always brought real problem to the real world. I did not want to involve common people in my problem which for me even, still full of mysteries. After I flew and moved so quickly inside the cover of the long shadows, I arrived near the street on the mountains. This was the highroad between cities; I thought that this is my entrance to return to the world. I need to listen to the conversation so that I could recognize the world that I had left for 25 years.
On the side of the road, I sit with my legs crossed, just like an old beggar, while bringing a stick and a hardened pumpkin skin, who was ready to accept whatever charity given to him. The Buddhist priest also did it as a requirement that they had been accepted, just like I read from Siksassamuccaya10 which was written by Santideva when I was born one hundred years ago.
Wear gloves and the equipment of Buddha and live from the charity
Bring a bowl and blind stick
With your head shaved clean, colorful clothes and the bowl to accept charity
To relive oneself from pride; to be freed from the pride, one must become a Candala11 a humble man who beg for charity, to accept anything that was thrown to respect the teacher
Do good deeds to be liked by other priests.
I was not a Buddhist priest and my head was not bald, on the contrary it was messy like a disgusting bum and I did not wear gloves but underwear like Sadhu12 people, that I did not know what color was it. I just played the role of a beggar, like what I had done when I concealed myself in the daily life and at that time, I deepened the life of Candala. People avoided me, every time I looked at them, I saw disgusted look, children spat on me, and mothers treated me well out of pity.
The absence of appreciation is the meaning of live in suffering, and for a priest who used their wise brain, soon could see the bad side of people that they must not do.
From the curve road, a horse was spurred fast. The sturdy and strong horse had black fur, but the rider was wearing yellow clothes; yellow hairband, the sword sheath on the back had golden color.
Even the horse was spurred fast, from afar; I knew that he cautious of my presence. My head was lowered as if I was ready to accept anything, but in truth, I was ready. It was clear that the horse rider came from the world of martial arts, and as the fellow martial artists, it was common to instantly recognize each other with one glance.
I have disappeared for 25 years, but in the world of martial arts, the big stories such as the Massacre of One Hundreds Martial Artists sometimes gave a detailed description on the main character, so they characteristics would be easily distinguished.
My experience in disguising myself and concealed within the commoner’s life showed me that someone who left a name in the world of martial arts would not be easily disappear.
When I became a beggar, I thought no one was watching me. Living as homeless and slept wherever I could, I thought would be the best way to avoid observation. On the contrary, by doing this, my presence was quickly recognized by the Beggar Party. (TN: Yeah, beggars apparently have a party, and perhaps even a president? Lol)
The horse was running closer. I recognized the rider was neither from Yawabumi nor Suwarnadwipa, because that rider was wearing legs wrapping that was called by foreigner as shoes. From the golden sheath, I knew that the owner was not just a common warrior. The sheath had carving of dragon and so on the side of the sword. The rider was certainly someone who inherited the Golden Dragon Sword.
- According to Google translate, it was from Javanese which means solitude in English
- I could not find what antman in Google is, but judging from the next sentence, perhaps it is one of the states of mind when one is meditating. And NO! it is not Ant Man as in Marvel Hero…
- The original name for Borobudur Temple
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stupa Borobudur’s Stupa: https://media1.britannica.com/eb-media/91/153391-004-FBF7E03C.jpg