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Stalking Vol 2: The Bridge of Reason

Beneath all of its indoctrinations, I saw a fine weave of specialized expectations and focused
uncertainties upon which we nurtured our cultures. Between these tentacles lay the meticulously
shaped silences that had delicately directed me to believe only what others had made apparent—
insisted upon, while other options were hushed. I understood perfectly how t he gaps in my
continuity of reason had been hijacked, and my conscience compromised by a relentless pressure
to conform to the subtleties of insidious commands: I knew that I had never made a deliberate
decision, because they could only be made from outside of the conformity of here, where self-
interest was integral to all of my interpretations. They had to be made from where my fall was
taking me… from there, where the concept of "self" was irrelevant.
My first real decision was at hand: I was no longer a man having an acute spiritual
experience. I was a spirit engaging the cores of being human. I always had been.
"Fuck me," slipped out from between lips that felt like mine.
"No thanks," a voice replied.
The unexpected wit refocused me, and in flash-focus I glimpsed why Stalkers might have
twice used the word Dreamer to define opposite conditions of human behavior… it wasn’t
reasonable. They had a sense of humor.
They needed it to exist in such an ironic circumstance, where to fall through the cracks of
custom, and break the artificial continuity of reason, was to banish the source of our unpublished
fears to the world of delusion. But people had to be ready for that journey, and what made so
many of us ready was being badly broken. It was our rule.
A sense of fulfillment washed through me—not completion—more like Act 1, because I
was one of the broken.
To my left, the image of a black bird gliding into an upright stance resolved into an elderly
version of me watching his life play back in metaphor. His stance was solid, but not defiant;
there was extraordinary depth to the weathered eyes that had excommunicated the wraith who
had stolen people's light until they saw him for what he was.
As a simultaneous thought, I knew he had embraced his journey and mas tered the
cornerstones of personal evolution in the physical arena: moving his Assemblage Point had freed
him from his conditioning, allowing him to embrace his Minimal Chances, and distil his
personality into essential beliefs. His Conditional Death—the destruction of these beliefs—had
opened the floodgates to unimaginable knowledge. His aura exuded mystery, and beckoned
challenge. He couldn’t get enough. His heart was full. His spirit soared.
He was whole.
The vision melted into a massive, golden-brown bear placidly lumbering into the translucent
forest across from me: wisdom was following the path of providence that power impeccably
designed with every stride... irresistibly, my focus was pulled to the decision on my right.
A frail version of me was wasting away in an alcoholic haze, communicating by obscene
codes familiar only to those who had been present at the inception of his torments: he had
become a reflection of his experiences, not a product of their assessment. So immersed in self
was he that no offer of help could penetrate its depths. He had continued to abuse himself, and
his increasingly tiny world, to such a degree that his recovery had passed the point of change.
Only his death would stem the damage. It was nearby; rheumy eyes pleaded for this mercy. His
heart was broken—the spirit voiceless.
He was empty.
Myriad manifestations of the devastations that had felled him swirled into a timeless view
where they were transformed into enlightened explorations by those who had not fallen, for all of