Ashin Issariya (“King Zero”) is a Buddhist monk from Burma. In 2007 he was a principal organizer of the nationwide protests that became known as the “Saffron Revolution".  
Ashin Issariya (“King Zero”) is a Buddhist monk from Burma. In 2007 he was a principal organizer of the nationwide protests that became known as the “Saffron Revolution".

The concept of zero

Ashin Issariya, also known as King Zero, is a Buddhist monk from Burma and one of the organisers of the protests against the military regime, which came to be later known as the Saffron Revolution. Currently, he continues to be active in the Burmese peace movement, and he believes that he can change the system and increase the quality of life in his country through education.

 

I stare at the closed eyelids of Ashin Isssariya which clench more and more tightly with every second.

 

„We have a lot of work ahead of us,” he says calmly. „We have to write on paper sheets, banknotes, walls and Internet forums that we disagree with the activities of the Burmese government.”

 

Ashin reveals his big irises. I can see his eyes, but he seems to be somewhat absent.

 

During several of our meetings, he speaks mainly of the Saffron Revolution. He explains it to me.

 

I don’t have a reason to distrust him. But sometimes, when he talks about his life, I feel a certain dose of unrealism. As if I listened to an old Buddhist parable.

 

The story is divided into two separate narratives – I wrote the first one with a modern language, and the second one is written in the style of a collection of old Buddhist manuscripts in the Pali language. I wrote it in 2013, but, given that I remain in regular contact with my protagonist, I could update the story. Attached is a portrait of Issariya.

Ashin Issariya (“King Zero”) is a Buddhist monk from Burma. In 2007 he was a principal organizer of the nationwide protests that became known as the “Saffron Revolution".