Shiva-puri peak lies inside a shivapuri conservation area to the north of Kathmandu valley, a place where saint Govindananda Bharati (popularly known as Shivapuri baba) stayed and meditated during his later age . It was just an ordinary day when I decided to make a short trek to the peak with a desire to get lost from this hustling and bustling city of Kathmandu. Gathering all my passive energy and daring to make hours long walk through the thick jungle I left my room by 9:00am and it was about 12:00 in the noon when I was about to begin my hike after the completion of bus-journey. With mixed emotions of fear, excitement, adventure and spiritualism I walked up the hill through the dense jungle leaving behind a noisy Kathmandu father and farther with each steps I moved further and further. Sometimes being frightened by the strange noise of falling leaves and twigs and sometimes being enchanted by the chirp of birds I kept on walking when my legs stopped moving forward after I reached a small hut just above the bagdwar (source of Bagmati River). My short trek ended there for the day and stayed there with a hermit who is popularly known as ‘todke baba’ (name todke was given to him for the reason he meditated on a tree hole and todko means hole in nepali). Sun had already started to crawl down the western hills when I reached there after few hours of walk. Baba (hermit) offered me with a glass of tea which helped me a lot to warm my body and forget the fatigue of the journey. As the stars started emerging in the night sky it was time for dinner, a simple menu: rice and vegetable. We sat encircling a fireplace to protect ourselves from the bitter cold of high altitude hills and touching unheated water during the night time demanded a real courage to anyone.
Time after dinner was a gossip time and many things entered inside our debate like meditation, tantra, yoga, world, frustration, sex, sensual pleasure, ultimate freedom, love, infatuation, power, politics, spiritualism, hypocrisy, etc. As we came out of the fireplace to go to bed clock had already traveled a circular walk of nine and half hours. The night was noisily silent with only voices that could be heard of were of nearby water source and insects. Night was absolutely natural and as I looked up at the sky it was glittering with stars with no artificial source of city lights to light up the surroundings and the sky. It looked really beautiful with no human or human related noise to interfere and the only thing that one could experience was a real darkness. It made me feel that night is not only an absence of sun in the sky; experiencing night in the middle of dense jungle far from a hustling and bustling city is something different; a real night where you can have a first hand experience of natural night with no street lights, house lights, honking horns of vehicles, deafening noise of TV serials or energy filled noise of disco or party music, no hangover of office meetings or daytime dating, no relationship tensions, no whole day events or news updates, no SMS or time for phone calls, no facebook, no twitter, no homework no lessons to prepare for tomorrow. That’s the beauty of wild jungle, togetherness in loneliness and forgetfulness in consciousness. I tried to meditate before sleeping but proved to be of no help so thanked almighty lord for all the things s/he created and laid down. I don’t really know whether almighty god exists or not but my mind has been brought up in this culture of worshipping gods which gets reflected when situation demands.
It was 7:00 in the morning as I woke up and the chilly winter has cooled the whole environment for the whole night. After regular chores of the morning time I went to see a nearby monastery that has been deserted long time ago. Statues of Buddhas and butter lamps were covered with dust and waiting for some generous hands to be cleaned up. It was already time to leave when I returned back to the hut. So after having lunch I left the place bidding farewell to the hermit. Alone but together with the noise of jungle and occasionally blowing breeze I walked down through the trail of jungle with the only things to see were trees, grasses and steep hills.
After sometimes I reached a plane ground with no tree and so was open and wide. With a desire to take short rest I laid on the ground keeping pillow of my bag. As there were no trees around that ground one could clearly view the sky above and surrounding hills around and thick forest around. The environment of the surrounding was pleasing with no noise to disturb except the noise of breeze and birds and moving leaves and branches of trees. I laid down watching the blue sky with patches of moving white clouds. The sky went deeper and bluer as I kept gazing it on/ The day was sunny, air was fresh, sky was deep and blue and I was silenced by all these not only my mouth but my mind too. I just kept watching the blue sky and frequently changing shapes of white clouds. The whole existence was flowing constantly in some type of musical rhythm. As I watched on and on I was pleased to see the small patches of clouds appearing out of nowhere and flowing and disappearing in nowhere in the same blue sky. In this way rhythmic appearance and disappearance of clouds continued within the sky under the scope of my eyesight. I don’t know where these white clouds appeared from in the blue sky and where it eventually disappeared within few moments. Just few moments ago the sky was completely clear suddenly white clouds appeared, continuously changes in shapes and disappears nowhere. Nowhere it came from and nowhere it went. But I was sure that this cycle of appearance and disappearance of white clouds within the blue sky kept on happening. Where did it come from? Where did it go?
I don’t know. Maybe science can well explain this phenomena but I am not concerned with the science but with the epistemological questions of this whole universe. Can something appear/come out of nothing? Can something disappear in nothing? Does this really happen or is this the only way how universe functions? I had heard about big-bang theory that hypothesize the creation of the universe or leave alone big-bang where did this whole existence come from? God! Then where did god come from? Did god come out of nothing just like those white clouds, suddenly out of blues? Can this happen ; god forming without intercourse of two opposite sex or without undergoing scientifically explained biological phenomena? Or is it that we so called intelligent human beings are not intelligent enough to understand the mystery of creation or how universe works? If white clouds can appear out of nothing and disappear in nothing than why can’t the phenomenon called god be? Did this universe also emerge in similar fashion? “Something can come out of nothing and something can disappear in nothing”. Is this the basic underlying mystery of universe and universal matters. If white clouds can appear out of nothing in the blue sky and disappear in nothing silently than why can’t it be that our universe (long time ago in the unknown/distant past) emerged out of emptiness and will (sometime in the distant/unknown future) dissolve in the emptiness just like those white clouds. Can it be that the phenomenon of appearance and disappearance of white clouds is just a simple manifestation of the basic functioning law of nature or universe or the whole of this existence? If not then what is the mystery hidden behind these white clouds?