In Mèrida, we go back to the Casa del Mitreo, the ruins of an ancient Roman house.
You can see the mosaic floor tile with cosmic pattern.
The house has bath, dining room, bedrooms, and public exterior area with trees.
The next day — We walk to Aljucén, a place with a population of 247. We will walk over 17 kilometers and stay at the Albergue Annalena.
We pass the Roman aqueducts as the sun rises.
I read chapter 41 of the Tao te Ching:
“When a superior man hears of the Tao,
he immediately begins to embody it.”
The Camino reaches a reservoir, created by a dam constructed by the Romans to provide water for Mérida.
“When an average man hears of the Tao,
he half believes it, half doubts it.”
The camino passes around the reservoir.
The Camino goes into the countryside.
“When a foolish man hears of the Tao,
he laughs out loud.
If he didn’t laugh,
it wouldn’t be the Tao.”
“Thus it is said:
The path into the light seems dark.”
“The path forward seems to go back,
the direct path seems long,
true power seems weak,
true purity seems tarnished.”
“True steadfastness seems changeable,
true clarity seems obscure,
the greatest art seems unsophisticated,
the greatest love seems indifferent,
the greatest wisdom seems childish.”
We come to the small town of El Carrascalejo and see a church, with door open. The is the opportunity I have sought. We go in and I pray for you.
May you gain that which you seek. May you follow your destined path. May you come into harmony with your inner Way.
We come to a fork and follow the Camino.
Do not be surprised when good fortune comes to you. As this chapter from the Tao te Ching explains, some who read this embody the Tao. It is mysterious and it is not actually a matter of your faith. I have enough faith for both of us.
We see the town of Aljucén.
We walk past the church of Aljucén.
“The Tao is nowhere to be found.
Yet it nourishes and completes all things.”