Childhood of Rada
Radomir embraced His little daughter, kissed her, stroked her light-brown hair, and sat her on his horse. Rada looked at her father in bewilderment.
“How you have grown! You’ll grow up a beauty!” — Radomir thought. But, in a calm voice, He said something quite different:
“Hurry to your grandfather! Tell him that I ask everyone to leave! To leave — quickly! He knows what to do!”
“Gallop, daughter! Gallop — as fast as possible! Gallop!”
… Radomir whistled in a special way — and the horse rushed off.
Rada again turned around and saw that her father confidently and slowly went to where the cries were heard.
He walked, and above Him there was a huge dome of the Divine Light-Fire, Which seemed to protect from disaster both Rada and all people of the community…
He walked to the place where death waited for His body. He knew this, but little Rada did not know yet, but felt that everything around her suddenly became completely different from what should be in the world of love and harmony, light and joy, in which she lived and grew up to this day…
So she remembered her father: calm, strong, and connected with the Divine Fire, with the Power of God — He went to death so that His young disciples would not perish in the terrible tortures, and for all people of their community to escape the impending danger.
Only later, when Rada became older, she learned the details. Radomir Himself came to that settlement, where an armed detachment, led by a voivode and a bishop, had already entered, sent to “sort out”: who preaches here “heresy”, “stirs up” people…
They threatened with torture — so that people would give out the one who taught them. But Radomir came to the executioners Himself — so that no one was killed, injured and so that His community managed to leave these places unseen, not tracked down. He did this — at the cost of His own life.
Rada’s grandfather Blagoslav, the doyen of the community, then managed in a matter of hours to gather all the people and lead them from death, hiding in the hard-to-reach forests of the vast Russian land. They went very far from the places where Rada was born and grew up.
Rada was then only eight years old.
* * *
Rada, as long as she remembered herself, always felt her father the most important person in her childhood. Rada’s mother died shortly after Rada was born. Radomir — with all His care and love — became for Rada at once both a tender mother and a caring, wise, and strong father.
He gradually opened for Rada the knowledge of the whole world with all its harmony and beauty. Always nearby, ready to support at any time — His hands were — so strong, gentle, reliable!
Radomir Himself taught His daughter everything from infancy: to walk, talk, think, look at the world through the eyes of the soul, to seek the very answers to the questions that she had. He taught Rada to be brave and dexterous, as He would teach a son, whom His beloved wife did not manage to give birth to. He taught Rada also what mothers usually teach their daughters. And Rada — loved to take care of her father, trying her best to be a skilful and smart hostess in their house.
Radomir was the only son of the head of the community — doyen Blagoslav.
Their community was special. They lived as in Russia — before the advent of Orthodoxy — in many kins and communities which were instituted. People tried to preserve in their community the traditions and knowledge since ancient times during many centuries — from generation to generation.
But it was not easy to live like this. Such communities no longer existed, and if they were somewhere, then Blagoslav and his community’s members did not know about them. And for the beliefs that were now called “pagan”, the communities could be expelled from the places of settlement, and even worse — punished with torture and death as “heretics”. Therefore, they lived in the remotest forests. And always the peace of the families was guarded by the strong warriors. They observed the surroundings from tall trees or circled on horseback the district. In the case of “unexpected guests”, they were ready to take them away from the settlement or in time warn everyone about the danger.
Radomir sometimes took Rada with Him on such patrols. Rada especially loved their “important days”.
By that time, she had already learned how to ride on a horse and walk or sit in a hiding place so quietly that no one would notice.
Radomir taught the daughter to notice everything that a person can learn from the forest: the tracks of beasts and birds, their voices, and signs of different behavior of forest inhabitants. Radomir taught how to not disturb the inhabitants of the forest, to gain their trust. And — how by their behavior to find out much about what is happening around.
And when they looked afar from high hills or stayed to spend the night on special platforms on the tops of huge trees, from which was visible many kilometers, — it seemed to Rada that the whole Earth reveals its vast expanses, its magical secrets.
Rada loved especially one of these pines. From its top, all surrounding trees seemed like green waves, and then — flooded meadows and a river’s floodplain with a bizarre pattern of the riverbed.
* * *
Once they stayed on this peak of pine for the whole summer night. The weather was clear, almost windless. The stars shone, it seemed, especially brightly. The rising moon incredibly beautifully illuminated the tops of trees. In the moonlight, the river was magically silvered with fog.
Radomir spread his raincoat on the wooden watch on the top of the pine and wrapped Rada up from the night coolness:
“Sleep, daughter! In the morning, I’ll wake you up early, we’ll meet the sun!”
… But Rada could not fall asleep. She was lying on her back admiring the starry glow. She was filled with rapture and reverence. Quietly, she took Radomir’s hand:
“Dad, who has created all this — all this beauty?”
“By His Love and Power! Into everything that exists, He has put the Particles of Himself, of His Living Energies. In varying degrees densifying them, He created everything.
“At first, He thought up all this, and then gave as if a push to ensure that —everything here appeared, lived, developed and improved according to His Project. In all that He had created, there are Particles of His Love and Infinite Power!”
“He’s so big and strong, if He could do this!”
“God many times created such beautiful worlds! And then — from every such world — the Great Souls returned back into Him: the Creator-Father. Those were the Souls, Which grew to Their Majesty in those worlds. They poured into Him, like this river flows into the sea. The river and the sea — on the vast sea scales — become one.”
… Rada recalled how they once went to look at the sea. That was the North Sea — and a calm river, which became in this place one with the sea… That time, Rada did not think at all about how the waters of the river and the sea merge. She only admired the splendor of space, the hovering gulls…
And now, her father helped her to recall what was imprinted by soul that time — how strong and vivid is the majestic Beauty.
“Just as the river becomes the sea, so all Great Souls become One with God-the-Creator. We can call Them Gods. After the connection with the Creator — They can create by the Common Force, creating beautiful worlds and carrying out other deeds of the Divine — large and not very large.
“And each man can try to become such a Representative of God, Who is visible like a huge Divine Sun.”
“And You will become?”
“And me — too?”
“If you will want. Man is bestowed by God the right to choose how he or she should live.
“I already told you that every being has a Particle of the Divine Energies. This Particle can be grown by a person to the Greatness. And such a person can begin to learn everything that God can do.”
“And where is such Particle of God in me?”
“Here, in the spiritual heart, where love is born. You can yourself begin to learn how to feel it. This is a special center, in which man can see and hear God, feel His Love.”
“Yes, I remember how You explained this! And now is so much of this Love: in me and everywhere around!”
“The greatest Power in the universe is the Power of Love! By this Power, everything is built.”
“It’s the same as you are doing things. For example, you yourself have conceived the matter of something, and then you invest love and strength of soul and body — in order to implement this deed. God does so too. And it turns out that you can already start learning everything from God. But only God knows and can do — much more than we!”
… Radomir explained all by these simple words, and by the state of the Soul helped Rada to begin understanding and learning the Mysteries of the universe.
… And in the morning, they met the dawn. Above the expanse, covered with the morning mist, which was tender and golden-pink, boundless like the sea, — the sun rose! It was the Greatness of Beauty and Silence!
… All this, together with the memory of her father’s words about the Divine Sun, was so significant for Rada!
And Radomir — in that Silence — then said only a few words about how in the spiritual heart of man love can shine like the rising sun, which caresses all living with its rays.
* * *
So Rada grew up and studied.
Much more was told by Radomir to His daughter about God-the-Creator, about the living Earth-the-Mother — the home for all the living on it children of God! All this knowledge was woven into the life of Rada — and did not seem to her… as something strange and unusual.
About His “adult” affairs, to which Radomir sometimes left for a long time, He did not tell to little Rada.
And the deed, conceived by Him, was carried out not simply. He taught the people of other villages — Knowledge about God, which gradually faded on the Earth against the background of severe religious repressions.
Some of those disciples of Radomir eventually became members in their spiritual community, which was fastened by life according to the Divine Laws.
At that time not far from their community, the Old Believers, running from the massacre, stopped by a camp. They were left without a priest, who had betrayed them. They themselves did not accept the “new faith”, they wanted to remain faithful to God, as they themselves understood it. They decided to hide in the woods, but they did not know how to live spiritually further.
The doyen Blagoslav did not want to immediately take those people into his community, but he allowed Radomir to help them, teaching them.
“If You will teach them adequately, then let’s see what fate God will prepare for them.”
… But all ended not as was planned. Disciples only from his community managed to be saved by Radomir, although they, too, did not have time to be taught much. And the community itself — has lost its habitable place, and now they went to the east farther and farther from any settlements, from towns and villages…
They went — already without Radomir…
* * *
The road was hard. They took only the most necessary things…
No carts. The horses were led, loaded as much as possible. They threaded through the thickets.
The doyen Blagoslav did not show how hard it was for him. He guided people firmly, with his own strength and will, directing the very progress and all life of the community, which was set out into the wandering.
In his memory this was not the first time… But as hard as it was now, there had never been…
He did not hesitate for a long time, choosing between taking people away — or trying to collect all the men of the community, to try to save his only son… But that choice had made in the soul a sore wound that did not close up… He clearly understood that they could not resist the army — and all would perish. He took the only right decision… And now they were walking, walking, walking…
… Rada asked grandfather about her father:
“Will papa catch up with us soon?”
… Grandfather embraced her, looked into her eyes, said quietly:
“You’re already grown up, my beloved Rada! You must understand: your dad will not catch up with us! He is already before us there, where souls without bodies live, where your mother lives. There — now and He… Only we from our whole family remain in this world, my granddaughter!”
… So that was the end of Rada’s carefree childhood…