vineri, 4 septembrie 2009



This is the true account of how four Romanian pilgrims interested in the future of humanity met in the search of the stones (You don’t really have to read the whole story just watch the images and trust in us) in Bucharest. If you read it will occur to you that we can also guide you trough some of the touristic highlights of our Capital and the Prahova region.

Every turn and twist in our story follows some spiritual meaning, however erratic and apparently born out of a common senseless search for truth and tribal knowledge in Prahova region in the age of technological servitude. Facing endlessly protracted e-liberation and online social networking we discovered true friendship among ourselves. The impossibility to immediately and faithfully join the new tools offered by twitter accounts, facebook and myspace brought us many good things. Even the fact that we constantly seem unplugged and logged off has to be seen as a return to nature. We became a team without an immediate wish to be a team. The struggle to find the stones, the tribulations of our search and the problems we encountered made us from a group of like-minded friends – a true team!

One week ago, we started searching after the fabled stone on the Strada Cascadelor in Bucharest. Strada Cascadelor lies near a famous Flea Market and a lot of Home Appliance and Home Interior Decoration mega-markets in the Western part of the city. We woke up really early in the morning, took a tram to the Valley of the Cascades Street and started wondering for hours trough dust and kilometers of sand stone. Artificial sand stone colored in all the colors of the rainbow and mostly in the earthen, khaki, brown colors of the earth and the land. All this miles of artificial sand stone samples are ready for your selection. You can choose any style or color you want to have in your apartment. We might say that the artificial sand stone and the Termopan window system – are the single-most impressive addition to the post-communist house environment. Beside the domination of sand-stone canyons there were bathrooms and kitchen design models. There were streets full with just the same samples and the same kind of sand-stone over and over again. Finally we ended up in a warehouse with natural stone deposits. It was stone used for the new gardens, for alleys in the new gardens or monuments or rich peoples houses. It was mostly marble of every color and shape. The kind lady smoking and guarding the stones gave us a sample of stone to try it out. In fact we had an ecologic and feng shui hammer of my father with us and a sculptor’s chisel. Well it didn’t work, the marble was too hard and out of hardship we found a way. Why buy the stone? Why invest in an industry that slowly erodes and destroys our mountains and pollutes our rivers? Why should we not go to the land itself, search for natural remains, search for the bounty of the land and the glory of our rocks found in real nature. In fact without actually knowin we were revolting against the dominant sand stone that imitates natural stone or the join-up of e-tribalism that imitates real friendship.

Thus Cobilanschi told me lets go to the rivers and moutains and ask for somebody to record and film our endeavour. Cobilanschi who lived in the Militari neighborhood for a long time and barely holding back his emotion of seeing the communist flat were he stayed. We decided to take the train and to go to the town of Campina, as well as to go in the hilly sourroudings of the Cornu village. Our artist-friend and kind cameraman was Simion Cernica, a native of Drumul Taberei, living near the International Post Office. The fourth party of our group is an unnamed person. He wishes to keep his identity secret, so i will call him our friend from now on. I can only tell you that he is a student at the Geology and Earth Sciences University in Bucharest. He was actually our guide in the search for the natural stones and he helped us develop what we call the “ZACAMANT” concept. ZACAMANT would be actually the perfect word for our whole entreprise. It is more than a simple geological deposit, more than oil fields. We were digging for the sense of this word conected with another related Romanian word – ASEZAMANT. ASEZAMANT would be a place of cult, a place of importance, a place from the national or international patrimony, a cultural space, a cultural headquarters for everything that the land has more preciouss and important in cultural terms.

ZACAMANT is the natural counterpart of ASEZAMANT. It is the natural heritage, the bounty of the land, the natural reserves of your country. ZACAMANT is the proof that the country is still rich, that the bounty is endless, that the reserves are hidden, that they are to be searched for. The ZACAMANT could well be under your feet, it could be one hour with the train away from the city. We extended ZACAMANT to mean the creative power of the country and its people. ZACAMANT could be the final recongnition that the land has everything we need right here right now. ZACAMANT is the treasure of the tribe, it is the inheritance for the future, for an uncertain future and the means of survival of that tribe. ZACAMANT is the things we have to cherish and protect. We managed to wake up and take the train and from Campina we went directly from the train station to the Prahova River.

We started thinking that everybody should admire and love what we forgot we could love. We started collecting the local wild Sea-buckthorn. From all the species of buckthorn, the common Sea-buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides) is by far the most widespread, with a range extending from the Atlantic coasts of Europe right across to northwestern China. Grown widely throughout its native China and other mainland regions of Asia, sea-buckthorn is an herbal medicine used over centuries to relieve cough, aid digestion, invigorate blood circulation and alleviate pain. In Mongolia, extracts of sea-buckthorn branches and leaves are used to treat gastrointestinal distress in humans and animals. Bark and leaves are used for treating diarrhea and gastrointestinal and dermatologic disorders. Topical compressions are used for rheumatoid arthritis. Flowers may be used as a skin softener. For its hemostatic and anti-inflammatory effects, berry fruits are added to medications for pulmonary, gastrointestinal, cardiac, blood and metabolic disorders in Indian, Chinese and Tibetan medicines. Sea-buckthorn berry components have potential anticarcinogenic activity. In Romania it is called “catina” and it is clearly an instance of ZACAMANT! Around the banks of the river Prahova we started finding strange signs of somebody actually preceding us there. Somebody else had started collecting stones from the river, braking them and leaving their remains there. Who was it? When did they do it? It is great to follow in the steps of somebody that was there before you.

Well we walked up the sourrouding hills, between bountyfull gardens full of fresh apples and ripe fruits, in the blazing sun, sweating like oxen, and up up we went. We drank water from the fresh, bubbling, icecold springs. Have you ever pourred some spring water on your foot after hours of sandaled walking in the end of the summer? It is bliss. Going beyond the city-people villas guarded by the locals, the swiming pools, the surveillance cameras guarding the orchard, the fancy cars looking for the next motel, straight to the top to the monastery of orthodox nuns. This is a new monastery lying just on the abrupt edge of the hill, nearly sliding down on the other side into the chasm. Here, the young nuns were busy building the monastery. On one said, like a sign from above, we found the stones! The ZACAMANT was there on top, gathered by kind people for the good of the monastery, for its foundations and for building new cells for the nuns. After we chose the two stones for our tablets, we started walking down the hills trough the wilderness eating wild berries and wild apples. Thus, we got back to Campina to meet our friends Raluca Voinea and Eduard Constantin, both of them living in this town and glad to walk us through its surroudings and terraces.

Please follow us also next week, while we return to the fabled Prahova region for a memorial tour to the place were Aurel Vlaicu, the pioneer of Romanian Aviation, the Romanian Icarus of our technological destiny has crashed after trying to fly over the Carpathian mountains on the 13th of September 1913.

I thought also about the spiritual improvement of this blog and the so i decided to add each time i make an entry a book that had impact on both the Romanian readership after 1989 and on us as participants in the e-tribes project:

After the revolution of 1989 one of the most influent books that had a profound impact of the rediscovery associated with the Orient and India in particular, in a vein going back to the Romanian-born historian of religions, Mircea Eliade, was the novel Der Pilger Kamanita/Pilgrimen Kamanita (1906, i.e. The Pilgrim Kamanita) by Karl Adolph Gjellerup. Probably many have followed this path.


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