Garden of Dreams

May 18, 2012 - Kathmandu, Nepal

"Muhammad assures us in his Koran that he had seen Paradise.
He did not lie.
He had veritably been in paradise in an attack of epilepsy,
from which he suffered as I do.
" Dostoevsky

Afternoon time. I sit in my room relaxing when I get a texto from my friend.
"want to come out? surprise for you". The afternoon sun is warming up the room, my head feels like a giant knot, after a minute reflection, I decide it's a good time to get out. 
"cu in 10 mns" I reply.
We meet in a garden for a mint lemon drink, chit chat about nepale politics, men, love, couple and duties, and I follow my friend to the surprise. After a short walk through Thamel, We stand in front of the Garden Of Dreams's gate. It had been a long time since I wanted to visit the place. I am finally there. We enter a beautifully renovated garden, a buble of fresh air and flowers in the middle of Kathmandu dust and noise. I breathe, happy, a garden, that's exactly what I needed.

The place is known by young nepalese. In every corner, under the trees, they flirt, touch a knee, dare a kiss, hold hands. In a country in which public display of affection is improper and rarely seen, the garden is an oasis for young lovers. Others lay in the freshly cut grass, a book in their hands, nonchalantly enjoying the afternoon sun falling on the trees. Others sit at the Kaiser restaurant and cafe, enjoying a bottle of wine, or a piece of cake after a nice meal.


Before to sit for a lemon soda, we go around the garden. Bamboos, flowers, fountains, stone squares floating on water, it's a model of sophistication and refinment. Artificial paradise, Eden's garden.
"We must cultivate our gardens" advice of Candide, by french writer Voltaire. No matter how we choose to explain the world, the garden still needs cultivating, says a metal plaque, decorated with swastikas. I smile at seing a quote from one of my favorite french thinkers.

We must cultivate our gardens...indeed we must. Like bad farmers, we have polluted our planet, we produce food depleated of any nutriments, all of it for the sake of money. The GMO's came all the way to the Hymalayas, even the top of the world wasn't spared from human madness and greed. How much more destruction can humans do, I wander in silence. How much crazier can we get? Feeding chickens to cows, modifying our seeds, polluting the earth, destroying our garden. Are we that selfish that we cant even plan for our childrens future, or even our own?

Yes, they are mad men who govern us, and we are just as mad to follow them. Yet, in a paradoxical kind of way, we are all doing the best we can, each with the tools we have, we keep on sailing through the hardships of life. "Around the world, around the world" repeats the mechanic voice on the stereo. Daft Punk, has been around the world with me a few times and back, and all I found around the world was various forms of insanity. If it's not one problem it's another. Too much education, not enough education, the result is the same. People look for happiness. In money, in power, in stuff, they look everywhere but inside. Inside, there is a huge need to live in peace with the outside. Perfect symbiosis between the inner and outer world, a long lasting human dream called happiness, peace, heaven, call it what you want.


Oh, how I whish I could make you dream about beautiful mountains, about jungles filled with ancestral knowledge, about wise and wild men, but I can't give you that dream, because I haven't found it myself. As an artist, I could lie, embellish, yes I could sell you poems of another world if i wanted to, but I won't. Not here and not now anyhows, i'll keep that for others and further texts. The dreams are too easy, metaphores and poems mere escape routes. Speaking about every day life is much harder.
I am not a writer for a trekking company, I do not sell pictures to magazines selling dreams to those bored in their 9 to 5 jobs looking for a bit of excitment. I am not a writer, nor a photographer. I don't have anything for sale, all I got is my eyes, my hands, my brain, and all I can do is to share my vision.

My vision of the world is not a glorious one, not a sad one, nor a happy one. It just is mine. I see people, individuals crushed in the claws of fabricated cultures and religions, each with their own forms of questions/problems. The modern world has modern questions, existential crisis, modern wars, life is a video games with no meaning. The wild world has survival issues, tribal wars for a bowl of rice, life is lived in fear of god, let's pray some more and everything will be ok. We all dream of the other side, because on the other side, the grass is greener, so we think. All on the same boat we are, and it's called planet Earth, home, our garden. All we dream, all we get hurt, all we have a family, friends, lovers, all we fart, burp and smell bad sometimes. All we think we know what's best for everyone, all we get disturbed by opinions which do not match ours. All we are, like children going through life, crying memememe. Does anybody or anything out there hears our cries? Maybe, maybe not, that doesn't change anything to our anguish.


Catholics become buddhists, or muslims, hindus become catholics, or muslims. If the old gods don't work, we create new ones, we become new agers, speak to crystals and energies. If none of the options work, we try atheisms, and other forms of isms. 

But, in the end, a prayer is a prayer, no matter what form we project our doubts, fears, and questions upon, a prayer is a prayer. "Science will answer all our questions" is the same as praying "let god do his work".
we trade our gods to the whims of our emotions, another walking stick, another father/mother figure, every form is tested out when we can't stand on our own 2 feet. Nothing, no one will answer all your questions, for the simple reason that the answer keeps on changing. Life is movement, death is stillness. The only constant is change, and as long as we look for static answers we will keep banging our heads against the walls of change, the walls of nature.

Look at a plant, my friend, look at your child grow, look at your parents get old, look inside and see cells changing and moving, blood travelling through your body, look outside and see civilizations come and go like games of cards, look up at the sky and observe the stars moving around. Everything is in constant movement, so how could anyone give us answers. All we can do is to observe the changes, live with them and take notes for future generations. But answers, answers are for dead fools, for museums, for power mongers, for those afraid to change their minds. Every day I am wrong, every day I am right, every day, I change. Every day I die a little in order to live. Like flowers we all are, no one can hurry our growth. When we are ready to sprout a leaf, we simply do, it's nature. A leaf is painfull, is bliss, each new leaf a little death, a new birth. Then a flower comes, we think we have acheived, until a new leaf comes, a new blood cell, a star is born, a flower dies, a child opens his lungs, while a galaxy far aways feels the echos of Joe Blow singing in the shower, scrubbing the mudd of his body...dreams we are, cultivate your dreams.


I stopped dreaming, life became the dream. I got enlightened, I stopped believing in enlightement. I read too many holy texts, and they were all the same. Holy is holy, watch out for the ceiling as your feet get off the ground. Don't forget to say goodbye to your loved ones, because every time you come back down, you're just the same, a little bit diferent, just like everybody else, dazed and confused at the miracle we call life.

I read too much science, hung out with too many aliens, too many conversations with my inner AI's, to think that there is any solution to the questions. So, I stopped asking questions, and just started to be, careless, a lier, a confused idiot. A happy fool, a sad clown, I joined the human race after all. Pass time some say, all just pass time, in an ever changing world. The only meanings being the ones we create, and even those change, like waves standing up proudly for a minute and falling back into the ocean. Waves falling back into the mother, the terrifying nature, of which we can say nothing and everything, for we are nature, we are the mystery of which we can know nothing. Each thought like a leaf on a tree, blowing in the wind, each leaf like the mad ramblings of saints and sinners.

Religions, cultures, all are escuses. Escuses to feel superior to others, escuses to start a war, escuses to take a day of when we feel like it, escuses to be a stupid asshole. We're all artificial humans, poor little creatures manipulated by our own thoughts. Programmed we are, by the media, by the priests, our family, our ignorances, our ego. But this, by now, we know this. I wander...what happens when we decide to be free, when we decide to be our own programmer? The artists, the poets, the priests, all have sold us so many gardens of Eden, so many Nirvanas, that we forgot to create our own. Voltaire writes that "if god did not exist, it would be nescessary to invent it". Wise men always come to the same conclusion, a leaf at a time.


Men, women, gods, nobody knows anything about what those things are. Men are like this, women are like that, gods wear such and such hats. But if really it was a constant truth, why are women, men and gods seen to be diferent things depending on where and when you find yourself in the world? Could it be because they are all mere artificial creations? What am I, I do not know, every day a new creature, every day a new creation is for sure.

I stopped dreaming, I become selfish, no one will save my ass but my own self. No one can save your ass, but yourself, my friend. So wake up, wake up, and realize that Eden is you, that nirvana is you, know that for now anyhows, Earth is the best place to realize your dreams. No one will realize peace if you don't.

"To get peace, you have to be peace" says some wise man somewhere. The wise men are boring, they've been saying the same thing for 1000's of years. Voltaire writes about the corruption of the government, the suffering of men, he wrote 400 years ago. Along with the other wise men, Voltaire saw through the veils of maya, like so many he repeated truth that all wise men eventually come to. A happy sad type of dispair, understanding that we can't change the world, but we can change ourself, our vision, our behaviour...when we are ready.  We can' hurry nature, we are nature. The destruction of the planet is our own inner pollution taking outside forms.


Let others make their own mistakes, make your own mistakes, all fools in a ship of fools. Smile and say thank you.

We must cultivate our garden...this planet is our garden. If we don't cultivate it, no problem, we will just die. If we cultivate it, no problem, we will just die. At least death is certain, beautiful in her certitude. She stands proudly looking at us all, laughing at our pretentiousness, our civilization making, our museums, and everything we call great. She will eat us all, only to spit us back out like vomit on the ground. Butt naked, game over, start again. After all, nothing comes out of nothing, all we can do is to transform the matter we are made up off.
Dreamers we are, dreamers we will remain, from one dream to the next.


In the mean time, my friend and I finish our lemon soda. The sun is starting to come down, we walk out of the garden. Outside a bunch of kids in dirty worn out clothes lay on the ground, their brain floating in the glue waves they just inhaled out of paper baggs stuck to their dirty mouths. A woman holding a small baby begs for a rupee, while 2, or 3 or 7 kids run around her learning to beg. Hand to their mouth, in a pittifull and pathethic gesture. Another form moans for something, a few limbs missing, there is still a head attached to a torso, the whole thing asking for food. From one dream to the next we walk.

I whish I could sell you cheap dreams my friend, dreams of heaven, dreams of enlightement, dreams of for ever better after, dreams of gods caring for us poor little creatures, but it would be too easy. All I can share is my vision of the world, and all I see is a terrible beauty, suffering followed by joy, all I see is movement. In the process, all I learned is that the more I know, the more I see that I know nothing...So, I wake up another day, another cup of coffe, I put one feet in front of the next and I keep walkinge, one leaf at a time, one wave at a time...destination unknown in the Garden of Dreams...

"God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh." Voltaire

To you, my friends, family, those that love and hate me, to you my mother and father, to planet Earth our ship of fools, our life and blood. Thank you for sharing this strange and wild trip through the universe;)
Merci Sonya pour une journee parfaite:)

Tags: , ,



1 Comment

martin en moment a bruxelles:
May 18, 2012
great manu! i love your tales.kathmandu as p lace to stay for some times makes people come wise how everybody can see with you.
i hope you will still be around there end of sept.,when i will turn up there
again. ciao hope to see you in ktm martin
Fuzzy Travel · Next »
Create blog · Login