√ Neither failure nor success

Updated June 19, 2022

In a long forgotten land, there lived an old man in a house far away from everything.

In forgotten land a long time ago, an old man was living all by himself in a house far from everything. Photo © Alexius Jorgensen.


In a land, long time forgotten, there was a wise old man who was said to know the way to the enlightenment of that which is One. A young man, who dreamed about this, travelled for months through the country until he finally found the old man in an obscure place far from everything. He asked the old man if he could show him the way to the enlightenment of that which is One, and the old man answered: »No problem if you are willing to work for it.«

»Of course,« said the young man, who was very eager to get started, but a little surprised when the old man asked him to dig a ditch around his house. He assumed the old man was poor so that if he did it for free, all secrets would be revealed.

He, therefore, did his best to impress the old man, but it was not easy. The old man kept saying the work was not good enough. It could be much better, and the ditch should be much deeper. When the old man finally seemed satisfied, the young one thought he would be rewarded for all his hard work.

For about a week, the young man patiently waited for the old man to show his appreciation. Though the old man said nothing, he treated the old man with much respect, thinking the more he could make the old man feel good, the more he would reveal. For weeks the old man did not approach the young man at all until one day, he quietly asked him to fill up the ditch again.

The young man freaked out and started to wonder if the old man was a wise man, but he decided to see what would happen if he did what he was told. And so he filled up the ditch so that you could hardly see, there ever had been one.

The young man was very proud of his work, and when the old man asked him to meet at his house precisely one hour later, he thought, now all secrets will be revealed. So he opened the door to the house with a big smile. But it did not last because the old man threw a bucket of cow shit on the young man from his hiding place above the door. The young man got angrier than ever before in his life – especially as through the shit, he saw how amazed the old man was.

Furiously he left the old man, thinking he had wasted months of his precious life with this sadistic man, who knew nothing about the enlightenment of that which is One. After some time, however, he felt like coming back, and so one more time, he asked the old man to teach him the secret way to the enlightenment of that which is One.

Again the old man said yes and gave him one meaningless assignment after the other. A year or more went on like this, and when the old man one day again threw a bucket of cow shit on the young man, he quietly looked at the old man with a happy smile beneath the shit.

The young man did not feel young anymore, nor old. And he was no more looking for secrets to be revealed in the future. He was not looking for anything at all, neither did he assume that he in any way had done or was anything special. All his ideas were gone. He was empty, and in the emptiness, he saw nothing. Thus there was not something to hide the enlightenment of that which is One.

In the above, Alexius might have mixed old stories he heard in his 20s. He considered them spaced out and not in touch with modern life, which he assumed was about being recognised as somebody, like when he entered a disco, and the DJ turned down the music to greet him through the speakers. Nowadays, though, he is not swimming in success. But since Alexius is to be compared to the Enlightenment of that which is One, he is the perfect medium for Alexius’ Enlightened Non-Teachings. And since it is not about success, he cannot fail. 

NOTE: This article is part of hack 6.4, Enlightened or not.