It happened that a monk had not died, but was in a coma. Others thought that he had died, and they opened the graveyard, lowered the monk, closed the graveyard…and after a few hours the monk came to consciousness. He could not believe where he was – immense darkness, darkness so deep, as he had never seen, because not even a ray of light had ever entered into that tunnel. And such a stink, because so many dead bodies had become rotten – all around there were bodies and bodies, and they were all dead.
He shouted as much as he could, although he knew deep down that his voice would not reach to the monks in the monastery because it was sixty feet deep and then a huge rock always closed…. He had himself closed that rock many times. But as a last resort, he tried shouting with all his might, “I am alive!” But nobody heard it.
And you will be surprised to know the immense adaptability of man. You may think that he must have committed suicide – you are wrong. He lived in the hope that someday some monk will die, and the rock will be removed – then he can shout.
But meanwhile there was a little food that he has been sent with, and after that food, he started eating rotten food sent with other dead bodies which had become just skeletons.
It took ten years for another monk to die, although this monk was praying every day to God, “There are so many old monks….” But God has never heard anybody. Over the time of ten years he became a cannibal; he started eating the flesh of dead bodies. Not only that, he started collecting the money that had been given to each monk when he died, and the clothes – in the hope that when he would be rescued, he would take all these clothes and all this money.
And slowly, slowly he forgot that the graveyard was stinking; he forgot that he was living the ugliest life possible. For water, there was nothing else than the water that was coming from the rocks, and he knew that the water was from the gutters of the monastery. He started drinking that water; he could not have even touched it before, but there was no other way. The lust for life is so tremendous that man can manage…. That water which was coming was so dirty, but for him it was almost nectar; it was life-giving. And he was the only living man in that miles-long tunnel.
As he was moving around in the darkness, slowly, slowly his eyes became accustomed to seeing a little bit in the darkness. And dead people, just skeletons – nobody was there to prevent him, so he was searching everybody, finding money, clothes.
And when after ten years the rock was removed, he shouted back up. People had completely forgotten about him. They pulled him out, but he said, “First you pull up my clothes” – he had a big pile of clothes. People could not believe that…. Then he said, “Now pull up my money.” So they pulled up his money – he had collected the money from thousands of people. After all his treasures were taken out, he came out.