Kamanita And Vasitthi
[By KARL GJELLERUP]
NIGHT AND MORNING IN THE SPHERES
AS IN A BANQUET HALL, when all the torches and
lamps are extinguished, and one little lamp is left
burning before a sacred picture in a corner, so
Kāmanīta was left behind — alone, in universal night.
For just as his body was enfolded by the astral
substance of that Buddha likeness, so his being was
completely absorbed by the recollection of the Buddhaʹs
presence; and that was the oil which fed the flame of this
The whole conversation he had had with the
Master in the outer hall of the potterʹs house in Rājagaha
rose up before him from beginning to end, sentence by
sentence, word by word. But after he had gone quite
through it, he began again at the beginning. And every
sentence was to him like a gate that stood at the head of
the way to new avenues of thought which, in their turn,
led to others. And he explored them all with measured
steps, and there was nothing which remained dark to him.
And while his spirit, in such fashion, wove the
recollection of the Buddha into its own fabric until its last
strand was exhausted, his body absorbed ever more of the
astral matter which surrounded it, until what remained at
last became transparent. And the darkness of universal
night began to appear as a delicate blue that became ever
Whereupon Kāmanīta thought: "Out there reigns
the vast darkness of universal night. But a time will come
when morning shall dawn and a new Brahmā world will
come into existence. If my thoughts and acts were to be
directed towards becoming the new Hundred‐thousand‐
fold Brahmā, who would call the new world into exist‐
ence, I do not see who could outrival me. For while all the
beings of this Brahmā world have sunk into helplessness
and non‐existence, I alone am here at my post, watchful,
and in full possession of my faculties. Yes, if I so wished I
could summon all those beings into life at this instant and
begin the new universal day. But one thing I cannot do —
I can never again call Vāsitthī into being.
"Vāsitthī has gone.
"She has gone, into that passing away which
leaves no seed of existence behind; neither God nor Brahmā,
nor Māra the Evil One can find her. But what can life be to me
without Vāsitthī, who was its fairest and its best? And what
could a Brahmā existence be to me, a life beyond which
one is able to pass? And why trouble with the temporal,
when there is an Eternal?
"'There is an Eternal and a way to the Eternal.'
"An old forest brahmin once taught me that round
about the heart are spun a hundred fine arteries, by means
of which the consciousness is able to range throughout the
whole body; but there is, however, only one which leads
to the crown of the head — that one by which the con‐
sciousness leaves the body. So too there are a hundred,
yes, a thousand, a hundred thousand ways which lead
here and there in this world, through many scenes of
happiness and suffering, both where the lifespan is of long
and where it is of short duration, where all is beautiful and
where all is miserable, through divine and human worlds,
through animal kingdoms and under‐worlds. But there is
only one which leads absolutely out of this universe. That
is the way to the Eternal, the way to the untraversed land.
I am now on that road. Well then, I shall tread it to its
And he continued to dwell on the thought of the
Buddha, and of the way which leads to the End of all
And ever darker became the blue of the diapha‐
nous universal night.
**********to be continued***********
Edited by yawares
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