Needing a bit of fresh air, Jan Biznar, long-time managing director of LTE Slovakia and Czechia, packed working boots from his locker in his backpack and with a big need for a time-out to think and at least as much sense for adventure and curiosity he started to explore the unknown.
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In retrospect, Jan's experiences seem more like a Marathon Man's attempt to break out than a pilgrim's spiritual search for the meaning of his life, because: “It may be important to great thinkers to examine the world, to explain and despise it. But I think it is only important to love the world, not to despise it, not for us to hate each other, but to be able to regard the world and ourselves and all beings with love, admiration and respect.”(Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha)
In order to get back to the marathon and thus probably the most enduring work shoes in the world, Jan led the (pilgrim) journey by foot on the Way of St. James to Santiago di Compostela. “For me it was about doing something extraordinary for me. I just wanted to go somewhere, time to think and finally find myself, ”the manager recalls. So he spent the days on his own, with pain in his back and feet, and in the evening in an international community where pilgrims, regardless of their nation, came together in one thing: “It doesn't matter whether they come from Australia or Arabia meant that one should have more respect and humility for oneself. ”(and the blisters on the feet, note of the author)
By the way - the choice of footwear was a bit more pragmatic: “Well, I originally bought some, but to be honest they weren't the right ones for this endeavor. Then I tried a pair of work shoes that our train drivers are equipped with and they turned out to be perfect. So I can say: these shoes are fine - from minus 8 to plus 38 degrees! I walked 1,000km with it. And actually a lot more. There are hardly any signs of wear and tear."
When the first goal was reached, a plane for the Himalayas was already waiting for Jan, because he had decided to continue his search at the other end, on the roof of the world: “I decided on a monastery where the monks specialized in teaching people from western cultures in their way of life. We were there for 10 days, slept in the dormitory and were introduced to the secrets of meditation during the day. By the way: I can tell from the participants that the Slovaks are fairly Buddhist orientated, because our share of the group (with Czechs, Austrians, Swiss and Germans) was considerable.
Basically, the weeks that Jan used for his journey into the self were actually devoted to overcoming his crisis of meaning: “Today I have a different approach and less stress. This is good for me and for my environment. Here it is sometimes exaggerated with the attitude of being exclusively result-oriented and ignoring the quality of life. More serenity is the order of the day, ”Jan is now convinced.
And he is in good company: “Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.”(Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha)