Made Budhiana: Abstractions And Impressions

by Michelle Chin

" . . . . . The events had been of an ordinary and insignificant character, and yet he had given a value to each one. He made life taste like it does when one is using heroin and cocaine, yet he did it without actual extravagance. I could understand how it was that he had his unique reputation for leading a fantastic life, and yet how no one could put a finger on any particular exploit as extraordinary in itself. . . . . "
Aleister Crowley, Diary of a Drug Fiend, 1922 (page 353)

He sees the world in abstract terms. He sees artistry in the chaotic jumble of a village warung, a scarecrow in the rice fields, left-over pieces of offerings scattered on the ground, a dead fish on the beach. A lover of nature, a despiser of ugliness, he can find beauty in everything around him. He is obsessed with hygiene, he is neat and tidy, meticulous at looking after his electronic equipment, camping gear, painting supplies, car, clothes, skin, hair.

He is a teacher, a guru - he inspires and encourages. He makes friends easily, in all situations, and is genuinely fascinated in the smallest details of every person's life. He wants to bring out the best in those around him. He is generous with his friends, and is always there when they need help. He is accustomed to heartache and rejection, he accepts all. He can live on a shoestring, he loves to spend money. He can't save a cent to save his life.

He is a vegetarian, a meat-eater. He is keen to practise his yoga exercises, but doesn't always find the time - there is always some place to go, something to see, a new experience to be had. He can't keep still, he rarely stays long in one place, he is always on the move. He is a gypsy, a nomad, an adventurer, a traveller.

He has no taboos, he lives his life as he sees fit. He is a free spirit, but he is restricted by custom and tradition. Rules do not scare him, tradition cannot bind him, but he is nevertheless bound by his culture. He is liberated, he is a dictator. He has no qualms about telling you what you can and can't, should and shouldn't, do. He is spontaneous, he premeditates. He is confident enough to know what he wants, and he usually gets it, though not always. He is egotistical and vain, he is humble. He loves to laugh, and he has a wicked sense of humour. He is a cowboy. He is a genius. He is an underdog. He is a success. He is a contradiction.

Ubud, Bali, 2001