Tuesday, April 18, 2017

I am enough


I don't need to see my name in neon lights.  I don't need to be on stage waving at a cheering crowd.  There is no one who is able to give me the acceptance of who I am.  I do what brings me joy.  When I am able to help another it is because there is space in my time and the capacity to help.  If I cannot I am able to walk away without carrying any guilt.  
When someone helps me there is immense gratitude for them having taken the time and energy to be there for me.  Does it guarantee that I will be there for them? This is the toughest expectation not to live up to.  Just as it's reverse is when I have helped someone and they cannot be there when I am in need.  Maybe someone else will, that is the concept of 'paying it forward'.  

The expectations we put on ourselves and others on us, don't come from a negative place.  The consequences are negative.  The burden we carry when we cannot live up to them.  And also when we have lived up to them, it comes with another kind of burden. 

Much unraveling, and by opening layers of conditionings, sometimes reveal to us the real reason behind certain actions and behaviours.  Even so with all that is revealed 'staring in our face' we don't see or we look away because the honesty is too strong.

This log started off in my mind as I was reviewing reasons why I was holding on to a concept that I labelled a "dream".   The reality that showed itself as I lie in bed recovering from a bout of flu was stark.  I realized that a part of me wanted the dream to keep a hold onto  my passing years.  "I can still do it, while I have the energy", is what I told myself.  Maybe it was to give myself a reason to stay put in one place.  It could also be my unaware ego saying how much I have to offer this world.  

Then the realization that the center or physical space is not the answer.  Each person has their own journey.  An encounter with them through a yoga practice or a chance conversation can only guide them back to them-self the center that lies within. 

For myself do I really need any reason to justify where I want to live, how I want to live and what I do with my time?  All these are reasons to support the physical life.  A job or a business to provide the income to support oneself and the dependants. And time and passing years, nothing can hold back, its just the moments we get to cherish.  


For now I am enough!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Damascus - Syria



October 1989 I travelled to Syria.  I was stoping in Damascus to visit the shrine of a female warrior.  My mother, like many men and women from my ancestral background admired this woman, who would be declared a saint by any benchmark.  

I needed solace and I needed strength.  I was trying to make sense of a personal tragedy.  More I was trying to find answers.  My dear brother, who meant the world to me, was a co-pilot on a flight that went missing  through the Himalayan range.  A story in itself.  

Brings me back to my few days in Damascus.  The encounter with the woman in the shrine who asked me to read aloud some prayers for the group to listen, she would not take no when I shook my head.  Then her frown and hastily taking the prayer book away as she realized that I was not a native Arabic speaker.  Even though I can read the script I don't understand it and my pronunciation is offensive to the ears of those who know the language.  

I was alone, and I was with friends who helped me.  I walked the streets of Damascus.  I saw fashion  to equal those of any big name designer, and I saw simplicity.  

I experienced hospitality, from the heart of the Syrians who could not be satisfied by feeding me small food servings.  The many course meals, the variety, the laid back attitude, and their warmth all touched my heart.  One day as we walked through the bazaar with mounds of pistachios in the stalls we chatted with the owner.  Who kept saying "eat, eat the pistachios".  My brain did a calculation and using the price of pistachios in Canada- I probably ate $20 worth.  

Did I feel as a Canadian a hospitality was returned when the Syrians were welcomed here.  It seemed the right thing to do. 

The pain of the violence against those same people or people of that country creates a deep sadness in me.  

Violence = Pain 
This equation needs to change, the two variables which might encounter in the course of a human life have become a constant in that country.  

If we didn't have history, and memorials, and a desire to remember the victims of violence then how insensitive we will be to the emotional pain bodies.   Now I wonder is that it? 
My solemn promise to life is to go beyond the sensitivity.  To take the intensity of that pain and make a promise to myself that I will not partake in creating violence.  In thoughts, in action, in words. 


If my soul gets asked "will you return to another body?", my answer will be "hold on, may I please wait till the humans have learned how to recognize and resolve their inner conflicts".
Maybe I will be granted that wish.