The Place of Quarantine – Tina’s Symptom

“It was an echo of something vitally important – and she was afraid her life would not be long enough to uncover the essence of it…” – THE PLACE OF QUARANTINE

myqmarkShe looked at me intently. I nodded, seriously, without the slightest hint of a smile. “There’s no other way of putting it,” she repeated, “and there’s no need to. It doesn’t have a precise name anyway, even if I were to go through every dictionary and phrasebook. I cannot even explain it clearly to myself – although, of course, I’ve become used to it and stopped considering it a disease, a sickness. Now I just call it a symptom – it’s a step forward; a difficult one. It’s a positive step – because a symptom is not necessarily related to an illness…”

Tina’s “symptom” manifested itself way back in her distant childhood, soon after moving to Thailand. She began to experience odd sensations: it seemed someone invisible had stationed himself next to her and remained there, never leaving her for a single moment. He could not be touched, he was incorporeal, but his presence was undeniable. He held endless conversations with her – no, she wasn’t hearing voices, but her mind itself was in a constant dialogue with him, in contact with him, and that’s how all her thoughts were conceived. All that she could say, think, remember, arose from the presence of that “someone” nearby – or maybe “something” if one were to look from a wider perspective. Although, of course, “someone” was preferable because he already was her best friend, an intimate confidant, and she has no desire to think of him as something without a soul.

In her childhood, when it all began, she got scared and asked the Buddha to save her from this obtrusive stranger. In addition to the Buddha, she mentioned this to her mother, who became seriously alarmed and took her to a well-known local shaman. He said that Tina was being hunted by an evil spirit living in an old tree near her house and performed a tiring and distressing ritual that frightened her more than the symptom itself. After that, she decided she’d be better off not asking the Buddha for anything – and, in general, not discussing this secret “someone” with anyone…” – THE PLACE OF QUARANTINE

Image credit: swolfy


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He didn’t expect to wake up dead. Now he wants to prove the afterlife exists. Is there any hope that our memory and consciousness remain intact after death?

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