I, Bora Ömeroğlu, plan to walk 10.000 km across planet.
- I shall begin my journey on March ’21 from Istanbul heading East.
- I shall not speak the whole time and communicate by writing.
WHAT IS SILENT PATH?
Silent Path is a respectful and humble journey toward detaching the empty sense of identity that I have built over the years in order to reconnect with the true essence of my existence.
This is a highly focused and serene pilgrimage that I feel like I have to take in this moment in my life in order to find and reawaken to my true nature.
It’s a journey of self-discovery of one’s wisdom and compassion. Wisdom to realize that everything in this world is empty of the meaning that we dedicate to it with our mind… And compassion to commit to everything’s oneness in a more loving, graceful and selfless way.
I took a silent vow, or maybe a better way to put it, I decided not to speak on August 5th, 2020.
On that day, I woke up and realized that I did not want to say anything anymore. I realized that all this time I was looking for something, something that was unfathomable and my words were preventing me from grasping it.
I recognized that the void that I was filling with words have started to limit the potential of everything in my life. I noticed that words repeated long enough gain physical weight and become solid.
Silence, on the other hand is pure and open. It is the ground of infinite opportunities to reveal themselves as they are. In the infinite moment, in their infinite potential…
Slow paced long-distance walking is a way of meditating for centuries. Keeping the body and mind present at each instant allows me to access a certain state of concentration and will to create harmony and oneness in the moment.
Each step helps to leave the past behind. Each step avoids anticipating the future. Each step is a kind reminder that I’m not doing anything special on this earth because I am simply taking a walk.
Graciously and joyously… Present at each step, present at each moment… I am simply taking a walk…
HOW IT ENDED?
I had been walking from Istanbul to India since March 15th of 2021, for 9 months and 4756 kilometers…
On December 16th 2021, on my 215th walking day, I had been stopped by the military police. After a short investigation in police headquarters I was quickly detained and put in a black site security prison in Shiraz, Iran.
- Entering Iran illegally.
- Photographing a military base.
- And of course… espionage.
Rest of my time for 23 hours a day was in a 4 meter square cell by myself.
WHAT HAPPENED IN THERE?
- I experienced no direct violence, nor any direct kindness.
- Most of the things we see in the movies… they’re accurate!
- All blacked, all masked military officers.
- Blindfolds, all the time.
- Minor aggressions here and there.
- An ice cold cell.
- An unbreathable warm cell.
- 23 hours of isolation.
- Pure realization that I will be here for a while.
- 6 days of fasting and meditation.
- Deepest teachings.
- The courage to accept everything as it is.
- Interviews about my co-conspirators(!)
- Angry officers. Not so angry officers.
- One judge.
- An ineffective Consulate.
- A deep welcome towards the unknown…
Then something happened!
- Room temperature: Normal.
- Light in the room: Turned off for the night.
- Would I like some tea? or a blanket? or a smoke?
- I think what happened was not only one thing but everything!
- Because after I got home, I’ve heard that everyone has intervened.
- From our close family circles to government ministers.
- From back channels in Iran to social media
- Thoughts prayers everything…
WHAT DID WE LEARN?
- Nothing, or everything.
- Everything that was supposed to happen happened and nothing could have happened in any other way.
- The courage to accept things as they are.
- Realizing that each moment is perfect even though you’re stuck in a prison in Iran and literally in dark for the near future.
- These were my teachings.
- I have no bad words to say about anyone.
- This incident was a moment in time created both by me and the military police.
- I own the half of everything.
- Iran is not bad because of this event. Iran is not good because of this event.
- Iran is just what it is. The meaning is always within you.
My path continues, my silence prevails but at the moment my walk to India is complete. We will see what’s next for me as it reveals itself in time.
Thank you for all of your support to me and to my family during this challenging times.
Who are you, Where are you from?
My name is Bora Ömeroğlu, I am 38 years old, a scriptwriter and a film director from Istanbul, Turkey.
Where are you coming from, Where are you going to?
I started my journey from Istanbul and I follow the silk route through Iran and Pakistan hopefully all the way to India.
Why are you walking?
Walking brings me to the true rhythm of life. It allows me to stay in the moment and to be aware of how things are.
Isn’t it difficult to fast while walking?
It really isn’t. Strange as it may sound, hunger is a mental process, not a physical one. I’m not filling my mind with the thought that I have to eat all the time. I just think that if there is food, I will eat it otherwise I will continue walking.
I also realize that eating is another form of communication like talking, and it’s much more meaningful when it’s shared with people.
How many days at most without eating?
So far, I have walked for 11 days at most without eating and it was truly an interesting 11 days;)
Until when will you not speak?
Believe me, I’ll be the first to talk the moment I have something to say. Promise!
What will you do when you arrive to India?
I want to explore more of India and its endless rich culture. I want to spend some time there and maybe continue walking to Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Thailand. I do not have a final decision yet.
When will your journey end?
I only plan to stop when I am sure that I have found what I was looking for.
How did you prepare for this journey?
I have been reading the life stories of travelers who have made similar trips. On one hand I review their experiences and equipment preferences. On the other, I prepare myself both physically and mentally to walk 8 hours a day with 17 kg of weight on my back.
How can we support you?
Thank you very much but everything I need is in my backpack. If you want to support me, take a moment today to realize what you have and realize the magic of the moment you live.
What did you do for work before this?
For about 10 years, I wrote scripts for TV series in Turkey and abroad, and worked as a creative director and film director. But now I’ve left all of it behind.
Why did you quit your career?
I could not find any meaning in my work. I realized that the money, reward and applause received in return for the effort, time and stress had no balance. Everything changes, nothing is permanent!
Do you speak any foreign language?
Yes, I can speak English, French and Spanish. Of course, I do no longer speak 😉
How can we follow your journey?
You can follow @__silentpath on Instagram.
Any final words?
A lot of words of love for all…