This Hermit Monk
This Hermit Monk lives in total silence and solitude. He sleeps on a bed of olive branches scattered over the floor of a dilapidated stone cottage without doors or windows. He neither works nor produces his own food. Instead, he collects fruits and vegetables off the ground, or receives donations from the other monks who tell me that they have never been invited inside his windowless and door-less one-room stone house. He came here as an orphan and has lived his entire life in seclusion. He considers airplanes evil, work to be in vain and even eating a distraction from his quest for salvation. In the 10 days that I’m here, he never says a word to me. Rather a perfect subject, because he goes on about his business without paying any attention to me. A lot of the time he simply sits in his cottage and prays. Yet I sensed he wasn’t indifferent. He actually smiled a few times, and once he motioned for me to come into his house.