This is a memorable novel full of spiritual teachings touching many levels of understanding. It is about a spiritual journey that is intimately linked to the restoration of a secretaire, or writing table. As restoration is tedious and slow, so is the reading of this novel. But in a good way. It never gets dense, longish, or self-indulgent. The longer the book goes, the more interesting it gets, which is the same with restoration: as you get near the final stages and everything starts to come together, the level of excitement, revelation, and involvement increases. I was sorry to see this book, this wonderland, come to an end.
The secretaire, the physical world, the dots and strands (floaters) before the eyes, the people on the left side of the Emme River in Switzerland, come together in a world that is both complex and clear as water, making for a delightful read.
The characters created by Tausin cut through you to the bone, but you'll fall to your knees and love them, their abodes, their habits, their tricky and unfailing wisdom and practices. In the following scene the author, who is the main character, is suprisingly visited by an old woman who sees the truth about people and speaks it. Also appearing is Nestor, the author/seeker's guru and the owner of the secretaire.
"You've startled me," I told her.
"That's quite right," I heard a voice from the hallway. It was Nestor who entered the living room. "In moments of fright, the intensity increases. Those are precisely the moments in which people learn the most."
"The way it looks, the boy seems to believe he can do without an increased energy flow - probably because he thinks he's Mr. Know-It-All," she added with a cynical tone of voice.
"That'll make him turn old and senile in no time." Then she looked at me with an expression of distrust. "What's he doing here at the young lady's place anyway, hey?"
I seized the chance to parry her sneering remarks: I was here to become even wiser, I explained. Iris, I told her, informed me about the erotic unification.
"Uh, the erotic unification," she giggled. "Yes, yes, it's a hell of a difference whether the dickie is attached to the boy, or the boy attached to the dickie." Nestor and the danseuse laughed loudly.
The left side of the Emme is in my bones. I can smell the place and feel the impersonal chill of what is both an amusement park and a land of higher learning.
Elsewhere Nestor inquires of the seeker, "Are you searching for justifications to explain away your idleness and phegm? Crossing the bridge is not a question of character, let alone fate. It is a decision. It is a decision that every person walking the path in the basic structure has to make. It is the point when a human being has to decide whether he or she wants to remain a human being that wants to continue to experience the small joys and woes of this world, or if he or she wants to fly over into the left side so as to outgrow themselves in an ecstatic way, and to see the world with the eyes of a seer from then on."
Read Mouches Volantes and enter a world of challenging, original spirituality and memorable, uncompromising characters.