The Adventurer’s Haven

by | JBE, Volume 1

  • Be extremely present.
  • Set inspiring music by Jeremy Soule.
  • Set a positive intention. (“This is what I want to experience.”)
    • This story will be immersive.
    • I will experience how beautiful wilderness is.
    • This story will define adventure.
  • To relax, you may try to:
    • Listen to the music beforehand.
    • Meditate or do breathwork.
    • Observe nature.
  • Optional: Read outside in the evening at your favorite spot.

A blanket of nocturnal mist begins to forcover mountains afar. Soon the verdant hills will dwell in darkness.

A fire is burning before us; it hops and wriggles in hunger, heaving up tiny fireflies whose tails are ablaze, but our presence bestows calm upon it. The glare illuminates the pines around. Prominent parts of our faces reflect the light, while our eye sockets, as all sunken contours, linger in shadow. We sit and silently observe the depth of our being.

In the most profound, nonverbal meaning of the word, we are truly home, for nowhere across space-time exists a more suitable moment to be called so. I keep using the word us, yet who am I? A traveler? A line of text? I exist here with you, yet I do not remember myself coming into existence. How strange and wonderful to be spellbound by the moment.

I invite you to find rest in the Adventurer’s Haven anytime you need. When stormy tides hit the shores of your life, the fire’s warmth here and I will always welcome you in this forged present moment. Let my words reach you and reverberate inside your mind. Although they do not pass your lips, they have the ability to saliently echo through your inner chambers. Like a voice, speaking through your imagination.

The music will guide you. Rest in its river.

Here we sit on the verge of heaven. We inhale air with most intimate appreciation. Our hearts glow like the setting sun. Our pupils are dilated. We are both surrendering to the divine beauty of this writing. As our mind discovers balance through stillness, mud settles, and our hearing becomes that of a lynx’s. Suddenly, we hear sharply otherwise faint noises: Twigs snap. Leaves rustle. Something is running across a mossy undergrowth, but the dull thuds are quickly gaining distance. A resonant chirping of cicadas drowns out the sound.

Whatever that was, is long gone, a thought. I fade away too, for I am nothing but a figment of your imagination. Only you remain here in the warm, pleasant refuge which is called the Adventurer’s Haven.

Your attention is drawn to a waterfall that rumbles in the vicinity, somewhere behind a curtain of trees and shrubs. Below its overhang water plunges down at an incredible speed and shatters on stones, where it forms a tender foam. It continues down a river, which meanders through a forest valley… Until it reaches the far-end and delves into the darkening mountain horizon we have spoken about.

You are situated on a viewpoint, leaning back under a sweet pine. The trunk ascends high, as the crown rushes to meet the sky. Your eyes extend across the landscape. From the safety of the Adventurer’s Haven, you see bubbles floating on the river. They are travelling like a fleet of boats into the sunset. Birds are flying over trees, and their singing voices foretell the arrival of a night.

No danger is disrupting the peaceful coexistence of your body and mind. Everything flows into one. The temperature is perfectly fine by the fire’s heat. Even welcoming to outside travelers, who unfortunately, despite your wishes, do not come by. What a tranquil evening, nevertheless.

You untie your leather vest. Spasms halt, and your muscles relax. You lean back in comfort, but a cold sensation tingles your skin. As you sweep your hand through grass, you notice a cold rejuvenating dew. The peaceful night is creeping up in ever so slight steps, you wonder.

Then: Leaves whistle. Your attention spikes up. Nearby bushes split open. Something lurches through! A wild beast adjoins a lone adventurer. In the fullness of time, a foreign traveler does come to visit the campfire… Your wishes have been heard.

But the traveler is not a person. It admires you, though without a stare. It constricts your neck, but it isn’t a snake. The wanderer is astonished by your presence, for it had never seen a human before. Then: The beast falls into your lap. The very next second it whirls away!

“Wait a while. Share a drink!” you wishfully shout.

But the traveler is already moving. As you had tried to grab the ether, it serenely flowed through your fingers.

A refreshing wind, you sigh. The mysterious traveler was a wonderful breeze! If only he hadn’t left so soon and instead come to sit by the fire! What extraordinaire journeys would be told among you now.

“Farewell, fellow explorer!” you yell over the valley.

As the evening’s stars appear, the wind picks up, but the change is only barely noticeable. The fire does not budge. You stare into the hole in bushes; the one through which jumped the gusty beast. Your ears are pricked as if they were hearing a euphonious melody. Beyond the reaches of light, there splashes a creek. Nightfall covers it.

You feast your eyes over the valley. Little fireflies are glowing amid the trees. In massive groups, they are illuminating trails that wild animals have trampled.

By now, the distant mountains have submerged into dark. Birds have settled onto branches. The sky became quiet. Soon true nocturnal hunters will take wing. Owls have become awake. They hoot at places least expected; one above your head in the pine’s crown.

The fire crackles, but a miles-distant laughing of hyenas raises your skin. You fear not. You realize you do not laugh alone in this night. Tears of gratitude fall on the ground. The miraculous gift of living is shared among everyone. It occurs to you that the greatest stories are not written about the unstoppable marching of time. They epitomize the infinite depth of the present moment.

Bask in the presence of music before continuing the story. Surrender to the wind.

It comes to you that presence is, in a way, infinite. Your body may not be around in a hundred years because appearance changes, but your awareness is a twilight constant: The moorings of now remain unloosed. Perhaps you have already died and there is nothing to be worried about. Perhaps this life is happening after death and you have made it to heaven, to the Adventurer’s Haven.

In the early night, a stout plate cloud forms farther in the west, carrying a storm. You are determined to nibble a tender salmon, but the lenticularis[*] catches your eye.

You shelve the bitten fish and observe the incoming visitor. Your heart starts to ache, for you witness the sad truth. The cloud has gone astray. It has separated like a little sheep from the flock: While it desperately cries for assistance, winds are swiftly moving through its entirety. They are leading the little cloud away from its secluded companions. This poor, rueful, neglected cloud is wandering into the night alone.

With swollen eyes you watch it stumble, unwillingly, forward into the nocturnal dark. Your chin trembles. The protector in you is waking alive: You feel like shouting. The damn owls idly hoot, the bloody hyenas recklessly hunt, and the forsaken creek splashes on. Nobody frees up themselves. The entire world, either instinctively or on purpose, remains blind to this lamb hurtling toward darkness.

But wait! A silver string hits you. You surveil the skies. Above looms a ball of light – the moon rushes to the maroon’s aid!

“Wait for me, and I’ll drive all darkness back,” adorns the moon the crown of night; and whispers, the lunar prince, to the stranded cloud, “Wait with all you’ve got. Wait when the sun blazes hot. I have not forgotten.”

The silver cords pierce through the lamb, anchoring it like a ship. The cloud’s sailing stops, and the vertiginous pressure traversing its bowl-shaped body falls off. The lenticularis becomes motionless.

The lunar prince and you exhale in relief.

Finally, the cloud’s humidity begins to condense. The little lamb bursts out crying. Tears of joy. It weeps and wrings until it dissolves into tears completely. You freak out in charmed affection, for it has found peace.

Moonlight beams down on the valley, and tiny droplets of dew reflect the silvery light. Snoozing trees and grasses weave in a wailing wind. The wind is versatile enough to probe into rotten trunks and croon along with the cicadas. Perfectly shaped bubbles are floating on the river’s surface. The air is fresh, pleasing to the lungs. Clearly visible stars lull late travelers to sleep. There is no sign of an upcoming storm. Welcome to the Adventurer’s Haven.

[*] Lenticular clouds are stationary clouds that form mostly in the troposphere, however, here in the realms of imagination, this one cloud is moving.