Journey To Truth

While sailing on the Luzern Lake

one lazy afternoon, soaking in the beauty of the blue waters, the breeze in my hair, I caught sight of a petite young lady who had quite magically appeared out of nowhere in the few minutes that I had been lost to the Lake outside. She sat upon the chair, equally dainty and well suited to her frame, tucked away in one corner as though hiding from the world. The chair she now sat on had been mine since embarking on this cruise and for some interesting reason had remained so throughout that journey, until now.

I jostled my way through the crowded boat

to the corner where she sat, to claim my backpack which lay close by. Before I knew it I found myself smiling and engaging in friendly conversation with her. This was so unlike me and yet here I was, talking to a total stranger from the authenticity and warmth of my heart as though she were a long lost friend.

Her name was Solvej (pronounced sol-wey)

and though born in Switzerland she had inherited a Danish name of Celtic origin. This word had come to her from the days before God was ascribed a human form and the sun was worshiped as the source of all things. Solvej meant –way to the sun. I looked at her in relish almost unable to harness the power and beauty of her name.

Way to the sun huh,

I said, out loud as if to reconfirm that I had indeed heard her correctly. She smiled back somewhat shyly and nodded in affirmation.

Solvej I learnt had been

on a week long trek into the Swiss Alps. Now I had encountered several tame and professional trekkers on this trip but she was the only one to go at it solo. Intrigued, I asked her what had motivated her to walk alone for days on end.

I wanted to clear my head,

she said. I needed to understand what I really want. Who I am and what I wish to do with my life. I needed to make sense of me. I had to find myself.

I looked at her frail frame,

a thousand questions in my mind submerged in the wonderment of one single thought. Was Solvej, true to her name, a modern day yogi, in search of the true way, the way to the sun? How many 22 year olds would venture out alone for days on end in the silence of nature, walking the lone paths, in search of themselves, seeking to give meaning to their lives?

How many of us, older and ostensibly wiser

through the brutalities inflicted upon us by life, would choose this passage to self discovery? I marveled at how her petite frame housed such a magnificent and daring spirit.

We talked about our journeys

and travels. Places we had been to and where we still wanted to go. We shared of our lives as two souls who had known each other before. As our journey approached its destination she stopped and said… you are so beautiful.

Once again she left me speechless.

That is just what I had been thinking. She was so beautiful, her undaunted spirit, her passion to know more about the mysteries of her life, her courage to go at it alone. I smiled back feebly not entirely sure how to respond to what she was seeing in me. Was it her own reflection, I wondered.

Lost for words, I turned to her

and looked her in the eye, hoping to say a thousand words without uttering even a single. Way to the sun, huh? I said. I will never forget that name, not ever, I murmured.

Solwej symbolized that the only true way to search our truth was to travel inwards into the high and lowlands of our life’s experiences, the alps of our life.

A journey that must be walked alone, a passage of rites that must be  undertaken to discover the deeper meaning of our lives.

It is perhaps, the only way to really know the truth, and find our way back to the Sun.

 

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