The world remembers only its escapists!
Buddha was the greatest escapist.
In the middle of a night, shaking down all that binds him, he walked down to something that doesn’t change and bind. His great message was to put down: all your desires, all your heaviness, all your ego. How? By a sort of fleeing!
Jesus was another escapist.
He was man on the road. He belonged to an imaginary world, which he called, the kingdom of God. He didn’t get married and raised children. At times he cried “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests but the son of man has nowhere to lay his head” His message was to abandon. Abandon everything you have. He promised to give it back in hundred folds in his kingdom. He told whatever you have is not your own, but whatever you have abandoned is yours.
Sufi saint, Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi was an escapist too. He was a judge. Nobody doubted his judgments. They knew that this man can’t go wrong. But one day he met a man who asked a simple question “who is greatest, God or one who speaks about God” This changed him, he walked searching for the greatest. To those who searched for him, his wife said “the man whom you are searching for is mo more”
Rumi knew bereavement, what it is to be lost. He was also a lost man. He lost himself in a flower, in a rock, in the gush of wind and in all the flashes of beauty. He was lost in dispersing clouds,
“absentmindedness is a way of transport”
He didn’t mind all that matters for the world, instead, for the precious he searched in ruins. Ruins attracted him,
“where there is ruin, there is treasure”
He was acutely aware of the separations that runs through the veins of all embraces.
“Listen to the reed and the tale it tells,
How it sings of separation.”
He was in a perpetual return, escaping from all that remains.
These escapists make us at home in this world. Our prudence and practical sense can betray us. All our effort to belong to this world backfires. World has gravity, it dispels all that tries to belong to it. But it thirsts and come after all that tries to escape its grasp.
Escapists are tossed up like a feather in the sky, seeing things from above, judging things from the perspective of eternity, “everything that looks from the perspective of eternity is eternal” says Spinoza.
Is their lightness really light? They have their pain of being light, perhaps that “unbearable lightness of being”
So escapism is a way belonginess.
All those who belonged perished and fell in to oblivion.
All those escapists visits again and again and have their names written in the book of life.
Valleys and sky will not forget them. Everything that has life will recognise them as theirs.