Reviewed by Jon Michael Miller for Readers' Favorite
Reading The Fables of Lokaii: The Heart of the Forgotten Tao by Aviilokín K'shi has been a unique and challenging experience, perhaps like a child first reading a holy script, knowing just enough to read the words but not quite able to comprehend the ideas, but marveling at those ideas nonetheless. This concise book presents not only an exquisitely composed narrative poem but also its interpretation. The story is that of a searching lad wandering in a forest and meeting an older man in white: a sage who teaches the novice as they hike upward on a mountain, Oriell. The sage instructs the lad to recognize and imbue the true unity of all things and thus live in Transcendental Empathy. The sage Lokaii teaches Miro’ann the steps to enlightenment. Each stanza of the entrancing poem is followed by an “elucidation” in which the poet explains its meaning, indicating that the poet believes the novice reader will need an explanation. As a reader, I did, and I was grateful for it.
Before the poem begins, Aviilokin K’shi presents the dedication: “May the case of discrimination against higher levels of consciousness be recognized.” The work is filled with elucidations intended to reveal not only the aesthetics but the necessity of bringing enlightenment to those among us who are receptive to it. Behind the sublime beauty of his extended poem is the poet’s dismay at the mistreatment of those who have already mastered the difficult path Lokaii reveals to Miro’ann. The author compares this discrimination to racism and urges us to recognize and treat it as such. Sage Lokaii knows of the field of Unity, which is unknown to those who exist in the “Cities of the Night”, and who persist living in the disarray of their ignorance of the Tao. The Fables of Lokaii: The Heart of the Forgotten Tao by Aviilokin K’shi is a haunting introduction to the idea of enlightenment, for which, if we are wise, we will search in the forest of our ignorance as Miro’ann did. With the help of a mentor, we too can climb the mountain toward Transcendental Empathy.