1. The practical: A daily walk is one of the healthiest of human activities, but not only physically. The rhythm of walking enhances different important physiological functions (digestive, cardio-vascular, respiratory, etc.) and also lifts themind. Walking not only allows us to get from place to place physically but also metaphysically, according to one’s own feelings. For me, in general, moments of fatigue are linked subliminally to a sense of inner peace and well-being, which translates into true happiness. Taking on this project feels essential to my whole well-being.
2. Philosophical principles: Since I was a child I have perceived that the “reality” of sensations and emotions goes far beyond that which is learned at school and beyond the limits of the five basic senses. Although I am mainly Cartesian by nature in the everyday expression of words, thoughts and deeds, I realised that the metacognitive process generated by these are based on a dynamic metamorphosis which links Thought, Feeling and Will Power to imagination, inspiration and intuition. Unfortunately, these latter functions of our existence are completely ignored by science and academia. Later, from Goetheanum, I was able to share the experiences, doubts and questioning (which occur across different nationalities, cultures and religions) regarding the question of HUMAN NATURE and the relationship between it and the natural world and the universe.
I realised that my perceptions were experienced by a great number of other human beings, that is to say, a large proportion of mankind. Unfortunately, in my opinion, the evolution of humanity is increasingly loosening its ties to humanist values. At every level of society – science, education and even religion – Humanity is in danger of losing its freedom. Materialistic preoccupations with easy gain, speculation and disinformation leads to a contempt for solidarity, ethics and intellectual truths. This takes us further away from our own SPIRIT and often prevents us from having a forgiving attitude and the freedom to express our own opinions. In general, every form of contemplation, sensibility and reflection which could spring from our interior space, and which puts in doubt the excesses of materialism, is caricatured and labelled as abnormal and counter-productive.
Taking charge of “my own path” and attempting to travel across cultures and religions will give me a certain freedom to make contact with others in a different space from the mundane. It will create situations in which to share experiences, which I hope will be beneficial not only for me but also for those close to me and for those I encounter along the way.
3. Meditation: When hearing sounds I realise that without the empty spaces between notes music is not possible. These spaces help determine the rhythm that we want to create. Real life is vulnerable to the turbulence of the every day. We appear to have less and less time – for meeting others, for reading or even for eating. Meditation is perhaps the only activity that makes sense of the daily grind. Unfortunately, we have rarely learnt how to reflect freely. We spend decades and thousands of hours in school learning “things” that rarely affect our attitudes as human beings or as good or bad professionals. Modern life allows us less and less time for tranquillity. Our leisure time is dominated by television, sports venues or the joy of mass tourism and where the new liners are crammed with thousands of passengers which grab the headlines. Would it not be enough to offer our youth a more engaging and purer way to learn how to meditate? What would be the effect of the practice of reflection in place of the overload of Information technology that is imposed on us all?
Creating “space” where we can develop and “order” Thought : that is my primary objective.
Meditation allows us to create silent spaces in our inner being which are essential to our creativity and personal morality. It can help us to make better decisions so our lives can be better balanced in order to reveal positivity. But meditation should be aswell an "activity" wich permit to reenforce THE MIND, so we can improve our thought. The most of the time's it's our (un)consciousness that controls almost everithing we do. So that our behavior could be modeled by our counsciousness it's essentiel to meditate.
Every day, along my journey, I will try to put this meditation into practice in order to make sense of the wealth of experiences I will encounter.
4. Recovering from life experiences: Although I have been able to mourn the loss of family members, plus some of my friends, to some extent, I have not succeeded in taking this step regarding my brothers Luis and Taciano. On my journey I will be thinking about all those who have a special place in my heart, and mankind in general. I will think especially of my brothers every day in the hope that, by the end of my travels, they will rest in peace deep in my heart.
I dedicate this project to Andre and all the children from my family, Tom, Jessica, Boris, Sophie, Rijk, Hannah and those who come. I bring their exceptional smile in my heart, which will accompany me on my journey. I am very grateful for all the LOVE, PATIENCE and GENEROSITY received from Annette throughout our 25 years together. I love you all.
5. Sharing and Comradeship: Throughout my professional life I witnessed the suffering at the very heart of others with whom I was in daily contact. Usually, all these suffered from problems linked to disability and were plagued not by their disability but by misunderstandings and the attitudes of society and their environment. These led to exclusion, distress and anguish for those trying to confront attitudes towards difference and the lack of solutions.
What would an astronaut be able to achieve without the vast array of systems and equipment allowing him to walk on the moon? He would be profoundly dis-abled.
For almost 25 years I have supported countless children, adults and the elderly affected by various disabilities, managing their daily lives. In the end one remembers only the joy of good times together, because my goal was not to forget their disabilities or difficulties but to let them know life was worth living, whatever the disability. And actually, we all have one or two disabilities, but do we reveal and accept our own?
Towards the end of my career I feel that it is important that this trip will enable me to observe, without prejudice or second thoughts, what is being done for the disabled across the world.
In each country I will try to visit disabled people or communities where they live. If possible I will offer my help or become a spokesperson to solicit a helping hand from third parties, other associations or enterprises. If possible this will be carried out in accordance with the principles of the UN and UNESCO (Cultivating the peace)
It seems to me to be essential that I share my experiences throughout my journey.
6. Why Nepal? Since I had the idea of a project like this I asked myself a question; Where should I go? As I was born and raised a Christian and understand the place of worship and the sacred, the idea popped into my head; Shall I go to Santiago de Compostella , Lourdes or Fatima or widen my horizons and go to Jerusalem or Mecca? Or where else could I go? …
A few days later I woke from a dream, which I shared with my wife. I had seen an apparition of someone I had been curious about for years. He was known then as theBuddha-Boy, who has today become, in my opinion, a sage, bestowed with great charisma. A website was created about him –http://paldendorje.com/en/ - where he was named Maha Sambodhi Dharma Sangha (http://dharma-sangha.com).
Much as I find the Buddhist religion an interesting philosophy, I am not attracted to any one single dogma as, like other religions, I have several questions about their traditions and customs.
I don’t really know why I should go to Nepal but linking “the top of the world” in Europe to “THE top of the world” struck me as a good deal. Will I find something special there? Only time will tell!...