surely would've asked: Who is this Rose? Where has she come from? And from which fairy tale?
Would you like me to tell you from which fairy tale they'd come? They'd come from a fairy tale about you. Why am I so sure? Because I am a "Master of Recollection." And I can see you beginning to remember something when you look at the Castle. But don't exert yourself, I've told you this is only a notification to those who want to recall themselves too much. A warning: self-recalling is dangerous! You can lose everything, both your comfort and your peace.
Why? You want to ask. I'll answer. I'll show this to you. Have another look inside this "Winter Castle". Sure, it looks a bit sad. Sure, the Rose feels lonely… And the Prince is so wrapped up in his search - he has completely lost himself in the labyrinth of the old castle… But still! But still this place is so pleasant and cozy to stay in. You can even fall asleep and start dreaming of yourself.
For example, you, my sweet and charming Lady reader, can dream that you're a Rose - a little freakish, a little touchy, but nevertheless beautiful, romantic and royally splendid.
And you, my friend, can imagine yourself a real man, totally engrossed in the Search for Truth, or looking for a way out of some intractable problem, but still a noble prince, ready to make happy some touchy person with four thorns…
In this live picture you can see the sunset, the decay, the decadence… It is at the very brink of the world, where memory is almost impossible, like in a small storeroom at the back of an attic, where old things are impossible to make out, so thick is the layer of the dead worlds' dust on them. Yes it's so nice, so cozy here…
And now light a bonfire or a fire in the fireplace. Remember my uncontrollable thoughts disturbing you and forcing you to think?! They made you start looking for a way to help those who want to recall. Surely you've guessed that I haven't figured anything out yet, haven't you? You've already started to remember me, and that means you already know a lot about me. How could someone figure anything out if he didn't even know how to think?! But, instead of thinking, I have remembered something! Ha-ha. This is how we've tricked ourselves! We won't think, we will remember!
So then, I've recalled that fire is a door - both an entrance and a key to memories. Fire exists between the worlds. It contains Heat - a Door with a Lock that doesn't let strangers in; and the Flame, which is the Key. The Flame isn't hot, it just flows. Like water. And if you've caught my drift, you'll know the difference. Whoever sees it can divide the Fire into Heat and Flame and, having escaped the Heat, can immerse their consciousness in the Flame and get carried away in it. Where to? Who cares! But if you
run into some recollection during your magical voyage, be sure to stop and take a closer look at it. These recollections are milestones on your way to yourself and to your freedom. They hold you in some way. And that means that each of them is a koan, as a clever zen postman would say. Or a quest, as computer story tellers, who are not less clever, name it. And, put it plainly, this is a riddle for you - and for you only.
It might've been hanging in a space of memory for a thousand years. And you'd left a small piece of yourself in it. Just try to understand it. When you come across something that catches your eye or even charms you, it means that it relates to you in some way. And everything that might have relation with a person, must have it's own soul, because to relate to someone means to be animated. A lifeless thing can only belong to somebody. One can relate to somebody in a good or a bad way, but that's not the point. The point is, that when you peer into this picture, you understand that it's indeed related to you, and that means that it's got a soul. Ask yourself a question: whose soul is it?
I see there's no need to go on, you've got it all right. You'd left these messages yourself and for yourself during your endless journey through different worlds. And you gave each of them a piece of your soul and so had animated them, so that they'd survive till you came back. You know, my friend, once you were really big! And you're still quite big, but can you imagine what you once were, if your soul was large enough to get scattered all over the world!
However, to understand this it is only the beginning. Now you'll have to go to sleep again or this self-inquiry itch will make you recollect yourself, piece after piece… Remember I warned you: don't even read these words on the package - Inquiry yourself". And never take a bite of the pill itself, for God's sake!..
By the way, in order not to forget, the trick I remembered was indeed to show you how to search in the bushes. But I don't remember anything about how to decrypt these memories afterwards. And how could I remember that at all? It's you indeed who had hidden all the pieces of your soul in such a way that only you yourself could find and take them. It means that only you know the way these memories were entwined in those bushes. So it is you who must think, not me! Ha-ha. I'm too old to think.
But I know how dangerous this self-inquiry affair is! And I want to protect you and never let you set out on this foolhardy quest! Nobody knows if you're ever going to come back, and I know for sure you'll never be the same again! Playing with memories never takes place without consequence. Stop this and come back to your senses! And let our fire block your way and make you take a backward step.
Oh, there's one more thing, I'd almost forgotten - I asked
my artist friends to leave the Heat inside the Fire, and to remove the Flame… I asked them to tear out this snake's forked tongue. Hmm… but you know artists, they are so muddle-headed, they always confuse things.
But you are a reasonable person and won't risk your peace and comfort just because of some stupid old man who had forgotten the Flame inside your Fire!
I'm guilty, this is all my fault. And it can't be corrected. But still I can prevent many of the after-effects of this blunder. For example, I can speak to your common sense. Right now:
So, you've looked at this very "Winter castle", at this very dusty attic where memories sleep. You've looked at the flames. And now have a look at the next live picture. Look at the Dragon, listen to the music. Do you know what it is? It's what this Prince, this naughty boy, has become. This is his memory. This is the world from which his fairy tale once sprang. Have I scared you?
Come on, don't upset the old man, tell me you're afraid!