The language spoken by Adam

Language copy

“…The Adamic language is… the language spoken by Adam (and possibly Eve) in the Garden of Eden. It is variously interpreted as either the language used by God to address Adam (the divine language), or the language invented by Adam with which he named all things (including Eve)…”  –Wikipedia

The thin line between air and water


I walked up the little hill covered with green grass and low growing plants. At the top I looked around and saw a complete circle of palm trees sunken in dense tropical vegetation. It was 1975 and I was 7 years old.

Before me was a concrete water storage pond – a square structure measuring about 250 yards per side. It had sloping sides leading down to the water. The entire body of water was overgrown with swamp and aquatic plants. There was nobody around or even somewhere near. I looked at the surrounding palm trees. I looked down at the water. I gave in to the urge.

Somehow I made it down the steep sloping concrete and entered the water. As I was – in shorts, shirt, and sandals. The water was up to my chest. I looked around and I dove in.

What happened next was a life changing experience. Later I read about a very similar experience described by the famous underwater explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau in his autobiography. Early in his life he had an experience immersing his head under water and finding a realm of a completely new reality just underneath the surface. The separation line between that new world and everything else he knew was a the thin boundary where water and air met. He saw the beach, people, buildings above the water. With a dip of his head he saw the blurry underwater world. That experience changed the course of his life. One if his inventions was the diving rig – that same equipment we are used to see today.

My lonely experience was very similar. The palm trees and the tropical greenery above the water. And the blurry intense green and dark world just under the water surface. I tried to see fish or something moving. Everything was still. Just big blurry spots of color.

I got out of the water and climbed the steep concrete wall. At the top I took one last look down at the swamp plants and took off running. The company bus that transported everybody to and from work was about to leave. I could not miss it.

The bus was an old Russian looking vehicle with a shape of an armadillo but without the long tail and without the long snout. Very typical of the early 1960’s. It had faded orange stripes and the engine was a bulging mass right next to the driver. I sat by the engine. My shorts and underwear were wet. My hair stuck to my forehead.

All of a sudden I felt very sleepy. I leaned on the warm engine housing and fell asleep.

That was it. Experiences like that – that stay with your all your life and change its course – leave you in a dreamlike state after the fact. Some of that state remains throughout your life. I may say that if you have been there once you never leave.

The interest in aquatic life that was imprinted on me that day remained for more than 40 years now. It has taken different forms. Lately it has become a true appreciation of the wild, untouched Nature. In it there is a lot to be seen and heard but it is impossible to describe.

Nature is very loud and profoundly silent at the same time.

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Every day the same game

Every day we play the same game – try to face reality as much as we can only to push it back as hard as we can as soon as it gets too clear.

If you are missing part of the whole picture you are seeing a completely twisted version. We need that. We are all surrealists by birth.

We can NOT handle reality 100%. It is just just too much for our little monkey brains.

What makes you move?

What makes you move?

About 40 years ago I found a small book. It described tropical fish in the Amazon. I imagined them swimming in the tea colored water. I imagined the dust, the pieces of wood, the plants covered with debris. I never saw pictures of that but my imagination was vivid.

The images that I had in my head lead me to read more, to visit libraries and dig up books that nobody ever opened, to learn Latin names, to learn photography, to try to learn German, to expand my Russian even further, to learn English, to steal glass and to learn to cut it to make my own fish tanks at the age of 11. And eventually to go to college graduating in both Biology and Chemistry.

In America I was part of an aquarium club that lead me to meet many, many interesting people. It created connections that allowed me to help others with personal problems. I partnered in a rare fish import business and imported and sold fish that were not even described by science yet. I witnessed the modern day revival followed by the commercialization and devaluation of the planted aquarium hobby.

I learned that what you love can never be put in words. What we love we can only admire it with eyes wide open – like little kids looking at a butterfly or a blade of grass. Today I know that a child’s imagination is one of the most precious things in this world. That is one of the fundamental forces that makes the world move.

A few tiny fish on the background of dusty wood and leaves.