The two main characters are preparing their report on the first three stages on their Odyssey. The report in Dutch is almost ready, a first draft of the report in English is available.
The main characters are looking for a publisher for the first part of the report.
In the meantime, your narrator continues his introduction to the five skandhas in the Mahâyâna  Buddhism.
According to Buddhism, the five skandhas include everything we need for our spiritual development . The five skandhas are various ways of self-reflection of experiences of our self; they relate to you, me and everything around us.
The five skandhas may be divided into three main groups:
- a physical manner of self-reflection by form or matter (rūpa in Sanskrit);
- three emotional ways of self-reflection and
- (self) consciousness.
Now I will give a brief description of these five skandhas :
- Form or matter (Sanskrit – rūpa):
external and internal matter. Externally, rūpa is the physical world. Internally, rūpa includes our physical and physiological body and senses.
- Sensation or feelings (Sanskrit – vedanā):
experience of an object – for example – pleasant, unpleasant or neutral
- Perception, recognition or distinction (Sanskrit – samjñā):
perception or recognition of an object (e.g. the sound of a bell or the shape of a tree).
- Mental impressions, impulses, imprints (Sanskit – samskāra):
all mental manners, thoughts, imprints, ideas, opinions, prejudices and decisions that are activated by an object.
- Consciousness (Sanskrit – vijñāna): in Mahâyâna Buddhism, the skandha “consciousness” is the base that support all experiences.
The skandhas do not exist separately. The Skandhas arise, take shape and disappear in mutual relationship and interdependency .
After this introduction to the five skandhas, the question arises why our protagonists do not visit these skandhas as stages on their Odyssey.
The following post will give a first answer to this question.
 Mahâyâna means “big vessel”. All and everyone is included in this vessel, no particle of dust is excluded.
 Source: Red Pine (Bill Porter), The Heart Sutra. Washington D.C.: Shoemaker & Hoard, 2004 p. 56
 Source: Dasgupta, Surendranath, A History of Indian Philosophy, Vol. I. London: Cambridge University Press, 1957, p. 94