You are currently viewing The Mystery at Doomzana  (An Allegory of Hope)

The Mystery at Doomzana  (An Allegory of Hope)

The Mystery at Doomzana  (An Allegory)

Once upon a time (for every good story starts this way), the Zenbaba tribe lived in a small, isolated village called Doomzana in the Land of Sorrow. The dreary village was never warm because the sun never shone. The small community was beyond the Mountains of Despair, past the Sea of Suspicion.

            For as long as anyone could remember, the Zenbaban people were filled with sadness and pain. No one was ever happy. The children were punished whenever they were caught smiling or giggling. As a rule, the villagers were private, suspicious, and constantly depressed. What’s more, every Zenbaban was born with a tiny heart. Of course, they didn’t know their hearts were oddly small, for everyone suffered the same disorder, but their little hearts made them mistrustful of everyone, especially outsiders. Every day, the people woke up in dread, and they went to sleep in misery. Their conversations with each other ranged from rude to scornful. Because the Doomzana villagers didn’t trust each other or outsiders, they had few friends and lived isolated and lonely lives.

            However, all that was about to change forever.

            One day, a Stranger with an unusually large heart came to town late in the afternoon. You could see his heart beating and almost glowing in his chest. News about this Stranger spread quickly, and he was met at the village gates by the elders, who told him he was not welcome in Doomzana.

            “You are not from here. You are not one of us. And we do not trust anyone who smiles as much as you do who has a heart as shockingly large as yours. So, you must leave.” The Stranger did smile. A lot. His heart was huge compared to every Zenbaban. And as far as the Zenbabans were concerned, and it was very troubling, the Stranger smiled for no good reason.

            The Stranger spoke respectfully to the elders as he bowed low and said, “I understand your concern and I am sorry you are uncomfortable with my visit. I mean you no disrespect or harm.” The elders nodded as they looked at each other in relief.

            “And I assure you, I am no threat to you. In fact, I have brought priceless gifts from far away for anyone in this village who will receive them.”

            After much debate and skepticism, the elders agreed to let the Stranger stay outside the gates for one night. He was told he would be allowed into the village the next day for only a few hours if his gifts were considered worthy.

            “Thank you for your kindness. I am honored by your acceptance,” said the Stranger.

            One elder, the oldest and grumpiest, replied, “We care not about how you feel, nor do we intend to offer you any honor in return. We do not like or trust outsiders. So, you have one night, and tomorrow, we will evaluate your supposed gifts before we send you on your way.” The Stranger fought back a smile as he humbly bowed again and thanked them for their hospitality.

            The elders turned their backs in unison as they returned through the gates of Doomzana, each to their dark and gloomy huts. “One night,” yelled the eldest elder as he closed the village gates behind him, “One night only!” The Stranger smiled and waved in a way that irritated the elders to no end.

            Outside the gates, the Stranger set up his camp and built a large fire where he cooked food that smelled incredibly delicious. The smoke that seemed to settle over the entire village was filled with the aroma of warm bread, lamb with a hint of cumin—a sweet-smelling spice, and baked apples.

            The villagers could also hear him singing what they considered “haunting” songs accompanied by a never-before-seen stringed instrument. A few children snuck out of their huts to peer at the Stranger through the cracks in the walls.

            After some time, one of the villagers, a young woman named Rejected, who was born with a deformed right foot, tried to fall asleep. She could hear the song of the Stranger. His melody seemed familiar and yet peculiar. Rejected couldn’t quite make out the words, but the music passed through her heart like wind through tattered clothing. She lived her entire life ashamed of her deformity. But she began to dream when she finally fell asleep, and a very deep sleep it was. Her dream wasn’t one of those dreams you quickly forget. It was full of color, beauty, and excitement—far too exciting for any Zenbaban. In her dream, the Stranger came to her and touched her foot. She had never felt anything so terrifying, wonderful, and powerful. He also told her, “Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer. From now on, you will be called Accepted.”

            At that very moment, Rejected sat up straight in bed, wide awake, and she was smiling! To her amazement and surprise, her foot was no longer ugly and deformed. She leaped out of bed, and for the first time in her life, she laughed and danced in joy.

            Meanwhile, the Stranger was about to have a visitor. A common saying in Doomzana was, “Among all the people in the village, Broken makes the most and worst mistakes!” He was an older man known for his many failures and for letting just about everyone down. Broken, who rarely slept from guilt and self-hatred, decided to sneak out a secret gate on the east side of the village so he could go and observe the Stranger from a safe distance outside the walls. Broken stayed in the shadows and didn’t make a sound, but somehow, the Stranger knew he was present and invited him to sit at his fire.

            For the longest time, the Stranger said nothing and simply sat with Broken in silence. But then he began to play his instrument once again. And as the Stranger played a new song, Broken felt like the fire before them went through his entire body. He began to weep uncontrollably. At first, they were the same old tears of regret and remorse. But then the Stranger sang a chorus with the words, “Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer.” Broken’s tears turned from sorrow to joy as the Stranger sang those words. Somehow, though it seemed impossible, as the song swept through his soul, Broken could feel his heart getting bigger and beating stronger than ever before. After an hour or so, or maybe longer, he didn’t honestly know, Broken thanked the Stranger and stood to return to his hut. The Stranger looked at him and said, “From now on, you will be called Whole. Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer.”

            On his way to his hut, Whole passed by Depressed, sitting outside her hut curled into a ball. She was rocking back and forth as she squeezed her knees to her chest. Depressed spent most of her nights huddled in the darkness crying. Whole was smiling as he walked by Depressed. She looked up at him and sobbed, “Broken, are you making fun of me? Are you mocking me?”

            Whole stopped to speak to her. Depressed buried her head in her arms and knees as Whole knelt in the dirt before her. He gently lifted Depressed face to look into his eyes. He spoke tenderly and said, “No, I am not taunting you. But my name is now Whole. The Healer has made me new.” Depressed shook her head as she looked away into the darkness. “How is this possible? There is no hope for any in this god-forsaken village.”

            Whole gently took her face in his hands, turned her head again, and said, “Please look at me. See what the Healer has done for me.” And then she noticed his heart had grown. Depressed asked, “What has the Stranger done to you? What mystery is this?” Whole smiled and said, “Come with me and see. Let me take you to the Healer, and you will know for yourself.” Whole, who was much stronger now with a bigger heart, then lifted Depressed up off the ground and carried her out the gate to see the Stranger.

            When they arrived at his fire, the Stranger smiled and said, “Depressed, would you walk with me under this full moon down to the river? I promise to be with you every step along the way.” Whole let her down from his arms, and as she stood wobbling a bit on her feet, he gave her an assuring look and put her hand into the hand of the Stranger. Together, the Stranger and Depressed walked hand in hand along a narrow and twisted trail. The full moon and something unusual from the Stranger seemed to light up the path before them. Neither of them said a word, but as they walked, Depressed could feel her sadness somehow absorbed by the Stranger’s hand.

            To this day, the entire experience is beyond her ability to describe fully, but when they finally reached the river, Depressed fell to her knees at the feet of the Stranger and washed his feet with the pure river water. As Depressed washed the feet of the Stranger, she began to laugh. The more she splashed his feet with the water, the deeper and more they both laughed. The Stranger then placed his hand on her head as she knelt before him and said, “Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer. From now on, you will be called Joyful.

            The Stranger then retook her by the hand, lifted her, and said, “Let us go find your daughter, Fearful, for she matters a great deal to me too.” Joyful practically dragged the Stranger from the river back to his fire outside the gate (which had grown larger rather than smaller with time). They both laughed and giggled the entire way back to his campsite.

            When they arrived, she said, “I hope to return soon with my daughter, but Fearful may refuse to come with me. She is terrified of the dark and has never been outside of the walls at night.” The Stranger chuckled and said, “Tell her nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer, and all things are made new through me. Tell her she does not need to come out to me. Tell your daughter that what she felt in her heart tonight was a visitation from me and that she will be called Bold from now on.”

            Joyful skipped away to find her daughter. Somehow, she knew in her growing heart that her daughter had already changed. The night was almost over, and the light was beginning to dawn on the horizon. Suddenly, though the Stranger did not seem surprised by what happened next, stones began to fly over the wall at him from inside the village. The Stranger stood and turned his body toward the wall as the stones began to find their target, hitting him repeatedly. The stones cut and bruised the Stranger. These brutal rocks were being hurled by a young teenager called Anger. But as the stones struck the Stranger, he sang another song. This time, he sang a loud song that was undoubtedly heard beyond the Mountains of Despair and even the Sea of Suspicion. The song of the Stranger seemed to shatter the clouds above the village, and for the first time in anyone’s memory, the sun began to shine down on Doomzana.

            That Stranger spoke. “Anger, I will take your stones and embrace the wounds. I will endure your wrath, for I know it flows from your desperate pain and a heart injured by far too many. But my child, you are not alone. You are not abandoned. You, too, can live free.” Anger clasped his ears as if the sound was piercing his eardrums.

            At that moment, as the sun began to crest over the trees in a stunning sunrise filled with color and life, Anger threw open the gates in a wild flash and glared at the Stranger. Breathing hard and sweating profusely, Anger screamed at the Stranger, “What do you want from me, Stranger? What am I to you? I wish you were dead!”

            But then the strangest thing of all happened that night. Without hesitation, the Stranger took off running at full speed toward Anger. The young man was shocked and braced himself as he took up a defensive position, ready to resist the attack of the Stranger. But when the Stranger reached him, he surprised Anger and embraced him in a full-body hug. Anger’s entire body became like a wet noodle in the arms of the Stranger. Every fighting and wrath-filled bone in his body seemed to melt away. Then the Stranger whispered into Anger’s ear, “Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer. You are now called Peaceful. And you mean everything to me!”

            Now in full glory, the sun shined brighter than ever over the village of Doomzana. And as if drawn by an unseen force, Rejected, now known as Accepted; Broken, now known as Whole; Depressed, now known as Joyful; Fearful, now known as Bold; and Anger, now known as Peaceful, all stood encircled around the Stranger.

            Like sunrays dancing and reflecting off the water, this Fellowship of the Once Fractured, each given the priceless gifts of a new identity, a new heart, and a new life, danced and sang a new song of joy in gratitude for the One who would no longer be known as the Stranger, but Healer.

            So, let us end this tale where we began…

            Once upon a time, perhaps you were rejected because of some imperfections or broken and infamous because of some horrible mistakes and failures. Maybe you have struggled with dark depression or terrifying fear. You may have wrestled with anger to the point of being harsh and destructive toward yourself or others. And, like many, maybe your heart has shriveled and shrunk to something small and seemingly beyond repair.

            Please remember, my friend, that what is true for others can be true for you, “Nothing and no one is beyond the repair of the Healer.”


            No one.

            For you are loved beyond your wildest dreams.

The End.

(Or is it?)

Kurt Bubna

Kurt W. Bubna has published seven books, is an internationally recognized blogger, conference and retreat speaker, as well as an experienced life and leadership coach. Bubna has over forty years of experience working with individuals, teams, and a wide variety of business and non-profit organizations.