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 • Safiq Al-Kahir
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"As with all things, the path of the dreamer is composed of three parts: the triple layer of the phases, the doubled stages, and the pure planes of the thresholds. Of the last, there are twelve thresholds that the dreamer must cross. Each threshold is a gateway to further madness, until the dreamer has cleansed himself of all identity, of all the weight of self, and stands naked and receptive on the edge of eternity.

"That edge is yet another threshold, but one that is not counted as part of the journey. This final threshold stands beyond the path, beyond the route I write about here. This final threshold can only be realized by those who have been changed by the phases, who have sacrificed in stages, and who have been colored and discolored by the light of the thresholds. This threshold—the final and the first—is the hollow gate.

"As to what lies beyond the hollow gate, I cannot speak of that because language fails at this thirteenth threshold. The tongue of man is no longer sufficient to describe the wonder and horror beyond this gate. My hand cannot transcribe the words they speak in this place.

"Yes—oh, yes—there are others here. They are waiting for us. They are waiting for us to reach the abyss. Will the dreamer stumble and fall; will he tumble and fly; or will he simply dissolve upon the first touch of the hollow gate? Will he? Will he? Will he? Those who wait wonder.

"And yet, the dreamer must wonder himself. He must not trouble himself with this question of crossing the hollow gate. When he reaches it, he will know how he will cross. He will know the manner of his death, just as he will know the manner of his rebirth. The dreamer— phased, sacrificed, and purified—will forget his self and, in doing so, will realize his true identity.

"In one direction, all gates lead to heaven, and in reverse, all gates lead to hell. There is but one path. The hollow gate does not lie on this path. That is the secret of the thirteen threshold."

(from Safiq Al-Kahir's Book of Dreams)

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