“There is clear and drinking water, yellow water, black and stagnant – heavy water, there is mineral water. But the birds know it best. There may be thousands of waters, but they will choose and bathe in a certain place. I watched , I’ve been watching for hours – the chickens are diving, shaking, drinking … and every day there are birds in the same place. These are waters that do not dry up and flow less in the land. How do these innocent creatures understand What is good? We do not yet know the mysteries of the earth. They are hidden from us – what water speaks and what heals. Every water has secrets, but we can not find them. The human eye has seven curtains and its vision is limited. the animal can smell it. ” – An interview of Anita Cholakova with “The One Talking to the Water” for actualno.com.
This is a very short excerpt from the book “Water Speaks” by Maria Bebelekova. The main character in it is the famous Zamfir Manchev – Bai Mancho from Smolyan (the Rhodopes mountains in Bulgaria). In the work of the Rhodope woman he is the One who speaks with water. So far, he has built over 300 fountains, built dozens of bridges, one of which he has maintained for 40 years.
About 5 years ago, Bai (uncle) Mancho built a “land-land fountain” * in Smolyan – the driest fountain in the region. He laid six kilometers of water supply between Raykovo and Dunevo in a dry area, where there is no water for people or animals.
As a child, he grazed sheep and heard from old people that in Turkish times the water flowed for three days, but then got lost. He began to dream when he turned 80.
“I dreamed that I drank water from the heap and when I went with the baguettes (brass rods, twisted at right angles), I found water 70 meters away. Now the same water has been taken 6.3 km away, “says Bai Mancho. He added that he called the fountain “Zem-zem” because such clean water is only available at God’s tomb.” And it is clean because it has not flowed for centuries. It appeared to me in a dream. I went and dug it up, “added the master.
We asked him for an interview to reveal some of his secrets in the “Keeper of Traditions” section.
Bai Mancho, how did you make friends with water and when?
Since I was a child. I always walked with a sack of clay on my back, so wherever I found a spring, I grabbed it, clay it. From the trees I made a spout – people and animals to drink. I’ve always been drawn to the water. I played with water regularly. Old people told me how they found water with baguettes. And when I started playing – with willow sticks, little by little, I caught the craft. Childhood was in the beginning.
What qualities do you need to deal with water, to speak to you, to discover it?
You have to be punctual, honest, good, to do everyone’s work, not to be proud that you have learned a trade. There is nothing better than kindness and honesty. I was recently taken to Raykovo, to the high school. They gathered the children to tell them how I walked on straight paths and how far I had come. There were children who wanted me to show them how to do it, so that they too could suffer. Some have biocurrents. They can learn this craft. However, it should not only be biocurrents, but also help you from within.
What is “inside”?
The blood itself, the body itself, draws you to the water. This is rare. Many people have biocurrents, but they can’t find water everywhere. My whole body helps me to detect.
What types of water have you discovered so far?
A lot. There is clear and drinkable water, yellow water, black and stagnant, heavy water. There is mineral water. There is living and dead water. The dead can’t run away, just hide. Anyone who is a master of seeing water on the street can tell you if it is from a fountain, if it is from a spring, where it comes from. Water is known for its purity. It is difficult to find and catch. Digging is very important, because while digging, you can lose the “mother”. You need a master. Now a boy from Raykovo – Nikola Badev, works in Sofia, but in two weeks he comes to me to teach him a craft. I’m old and it’s nice to give it to someone who can take it. He is also a young man. I teach him how to shrink baguettes, how to hold them, what to do. He will learn, although he cannot find everywhere, the catch to learn, the source how to flow – enough again.
Do you recognize which water can heal, which can quench thirst?
Yes, I recognize them. I have a water in the village of Peshtera, on the way to Turyan. People make her sell it for eye treatment.
Is there one that can hurt?
There is. In order not to harm, it must be clean and kept clean. Especially children and the elderly – they get sick the most from water. It must be very clean for them.
When you work with her, does she resist you and how do you tame her?
He obeys me. One day my daughter sent a son-in-law to help me. I dig for water. A snake came out and she did not let him to the water because he drank brandy. Water has a flair, it protects you if you are a literate person.
Is it true that water has a memory?
True, and a great memory. I went to God’s tomb last year in Israel. I also went to the Jordan River. When I went to the river, the machines clicked, they took pictures. And when the water began to boil and gurgle, it was cold. And it comes all the way to my face. He recognized me! She has both flair and memory. Look where I came from, I’ve traveled so far by plane, but this water recognized me, too. There I was told to take a helicopter and find the “mother” of the Jordan River, but there was no place for the helicopter to land. They asked me if I could judge from the air. And it can’t. I have to be on the ground, to see what the turns are, how it flows, it only happens up close.
They offered you to find out from the air exactly where the Jordan River came from, didn’t they?
Yes, but it is in the mountains, in a military zone, there is nowhere to land. We couldn’t go because we were just going to take pictures, but we can’t see how it comes from the ground, exactly where. They told me that it springs from three places.
You say that water is one in the whole world, and whatever happens at one end of it, water knows at the other end of the earth. Is it possible?
This is a holy work, a work of the Lord. The earth speaks, the trees are alive. And they talk, they are like us, the people.
Can a person believe in water or is it a need without which there is no life, and faith is something else – in God or Allah?
You respect water and it will respect you. When it flows, it speaks, when it drips, it speaks, but one cannot understand everything. When the weather starts to deteriorate, the water roars. She tells you everything, but we can’t understand everything.
How many waters have you taken out so far, do you count them?
I counted up to 300, then the Almighty counted them. One should not be proud of having mastered a craft.
Is it possible that water is our connection with the cosmos and with the Lord?
How could it not be possible – every bar, every height speaks to the sky.
How have you spent the winter and the pandemic so far?
I am fine. Journalists from Sofia help me, they transfer money for the wood, and from Smolyan they bring it to me. I have everything.
Have you closed these months because you are a person for whom not a day goes by without getting wet and wet?
Ahh, should I shut up !? I’m out all day, I’m freezing, but I can’t stay inside. I’m worried when I’m inside. I can’t wait for it to stop raining, because while it’s raining, you can’t look for water. It is best searched in land to be accurate, to be sure the source.
What do you think this coronavirus that befell us teaches us?
This is an oath. This is a slap in the face for us because we do not believe. In my simple mind, old man, if we had started giving sacrifices and praying, he might have stopped by now.
How do you think people are changing in this ordeal – for better or for worse?
We are with the Devil. He lies to us everywhere. We only need to know God.
Now is the time for Christians and Muslims to fast and pray. For both religions, the most purifying holidays are coming – Easter and Ramadan. How do you accept them?
It’s good to be able to get together, more people together. And at least 40 people need to get together. If 40 people come together with one good man, all their sins are forgiven. We must believe, we must taste the food of the benevolent man. Bread is the strongest.
Do you go to church, to a mosque in these strange, coronavirus times?
I also go to church, I also go to the mosque. I do not make a difference. God is one. I get up in the morning and pray in the sun. People laugh at me. And I’ve been praying like this since I was a child.
What are you praying for?
I pray to the sun, it is God, God – always shining, shining to everyone, no difference between people and animals.
Since you are so often involved in water, what do you dream about at night?
I dream of more water. Sometimes she tells me where to find her. Recently, a girl from Levochevo dreamed of water on Ilinden, where a sacrifice is made. They came and took me to see, but when I look with my knowledge and baguettes, the dream is reversed. There is no water there, there must be a fountain. Water must be brought to it. Many dreams, not everyone can interpret them. Many people want to make some water. I also build bridges, one of which I have been maintaining for 40 years.
How many bridges have you built and where is the one you have maintained for so many years?
They are not like the fountains, but the one I maintain is very big – from Raykovo it comes to the hospital and branches off to the White Stone. There are people who try their axes to see if they are sharp. They stop on the bridge and play there. They spend. We do not have such stable people now. Young people should be educated the most by their mothers and fathers. They are waiting for the teacher. At school he is told what is good and bad, but even then he forgets. Parents have to guide him around the clock to do all the good things.
What happened to your “land-land” fountain between Raykovo and Ustovo, is it running?
It runs, but it spoils a lot. They walk drunk. I put a pitcher, and they throw it, crush it. There are more unbelievers. They destroy more than they build. It pulls us back, it brings us diseases and everything. We cannot be tolerated, God knows how God tolerates us.
You are very sensitive, and when you talk to a person, do you feel what he is like?
Ah, they’re making fun of me – they’re yelling, “He’s not well.” Everyone is waiting for the Council (the municipality – b.r.) and the state to do it. And we are the state. We must all strive to preserve and repair, not destroy.
With the many open waters and bridges, people will remember you, but also with a lot of wisdom, where does it come from?
By itself. A boy from the villages of Devin once recognized me on the sidewalk, put me in the car and drove me home. He shouts at me: “Bai Mancho, you speak like that because you are in the Balkans. If you are not in the Balkans, you will not have this speech, this mind.” We feel healthy here. By the way, I could hardly wait for a journalist to call me, to come and write that I have already fixed my eyes and now I work everywhere. Sometimes we talk badly about doctors. I don’t have to, they helped me – both eyes operated on me at the Smolyan Hospital, I’m very happy. I want to thank the doctors, but I don’t know their names. If you can, thank them for me!
* The Zem-Zem spring is located on the Arabian Peninsula, in the city of Mecca. The water from it in the Islamic world is considered to be the cleanest on Earth. This is one of the most valuable gifts that pilgrims bring after returning from worship.