Few have attempted to recreate an accurate portrayal of the social phenomenon known as â€œThe Mystic.â€ With this in mind, since I find myself enthralled by this movement, I decided to describe for you as clearly as possible the astounding subtlety and scarcely perceptible migrations of this invisible but powerful culture.
I warn you: I may have gone too far.
[Before continuing to read, please read and reread the disclaimer to the right. Itâ€™s not too late for you. As for me, Iâ€™m afraid thereâ€™s no turning back now.]
They say that good tales begin in the middle. I donâ€™t know if thatâ€™s true, but if it is, then I must tell you what happened during the second half of July, 2005 in Barcelona, definitely a point in the middle of this story.
It was hot, as most days are on the Spanish Mediterranean. I had taken a run earlier in the day, little noticing, as usual, the nude sunbathing women or the fat men in black Speedos with hairy backs ogling them. Ok, truth be told: the men were hard to ignore. Ok, ok, so were the women.
Anyway, thereâ€™s something different about life in that part of the world. Take the way they eat: coffee and a simple piece of bread for breakfast, Dinner out at 10 PM or so in the cool of the late night, well after the inferno of mid afternoon, and lunch from 2 to 4.
The people are to my eye attractive: thin, beautiful skin, great hair, fashionable, nicely shaped heads with interesting noses and eyes. And you have to love the Spanish temperament. That or hate it.
Little did I know, as I ran northward up the coast, listening to the sounds of the sea purring to my right, that in a couple of hours a new dimension would open that would radically alter and escalate my search for the Mystic.
Now, a few of you will remember that a few months before my trip to Europe, I had received an unusual email from â€œThe Mystic.â€ The subject read, â€œWeâ€™ll be waiting for you.â€ Believing it to be spam, I deleted it. If it were possible to travel in time, and it might in fact be, I would wish to return to that moment and stop myself.
Not long after, I began to hear talk about a social phenomenon known as â€œThe Mystic.â€ Before long I was following up leads, calling across the country, and even traveling in search of the mystic. Some of the individual members of the mystic, known as mystic warriors, were reputed to never die. Others were said to die and live and die and live again. At first, of course, I believed all this to be an urban legend along the lines of the â€œMonkey manâ€ of India.
Moreover, it was rumored that the only way any one could become a mystic warrior was to be guided in by one who was already part of this enigmatic clan. Their origins are ancient, I was told, as they trace themselves back to mystics throughout the ages that, in the words of Van Morrison, let their â€œ…soul and spirit flyâ€¦â€
In those early days when I began to search, my sources were those â€œsecond â€“handâ€ story tellers that â€œhad a friendâ€ whoâ€™d heard something about this mysterious movement. As of late, Iâ€™ve come closer. Too close.
Wait. Iâ€™m getting ahead of myself.
Letâ€™s go back to the middle of the story, to the naked women and fat men of Barcelona, and the surprise waiting for me that fateful day in July. But before I go on, I must tell you that I know what youâ€™re thinking. I thought the same thing at first and sometimes still do. But “go on” I must even at the risk of appearing “not serious.” After all, all I can do is tell you the story of my own search and let you decide whether or not to believe.
â€¦to be continued.