THE FOUR DIRECTIONS
Decrease Your Desires
Joy in Life
Be helpful to others
Be a Hollow Bone through which Spirits would enter the world of Others
To all those on whose shoulders you are sailing through this life. Theirs is the energy, your give it a direction
Today was one of those days, Euphoria arriving your doorstep, on this first fine day since 1 December when the snow arrived unannounced (I left on that day for KL but arrived back 16 days later)
It has been cold but the warmth comes from the heart. Each and every day I lived in the four corners of this world. It is as if apart from Quiberon a port city in the Brittany coast and the city of Paris, I was also living in KL in Malaysia, Havana in Cuba, Miami in the USA and for the past few days in Tehran, Iran, with other persons and people making cameo appearances on the canvas of the emotions.
CUBA oh CUBA.. If I could tell you just one lesson from that little island with a magnificent BIG heart, this would be it: Solidarity, with all those who are suffering, emotionally, physically and intellectually. If Cuba, a materially deprived country, the USA embargo since 1962 does not help a bit, can be so generous, what does it say about the Cuban soul? This month we remember so many important dates: The Flight of the tyrants to the USA from Cuba 1959, the triumphant entry of Fidel and Companeros into La Habana 1959, Birthday of the Cuban Apostle Jose Marti… and it is always good to remember the departed revolutionaries Che and Camilo whose faces appear in our vista daily in La Habana reminding us of their great sacrifices.
Cuba is about Sacrifices. You sacrifice to the extent that someone else benefits, small or big, each Cuban sacrifices and it is so well understood (in anthropology we say emic behaviour, like a New Guinea tribesmen know about honour of his family, no one has to teach him) that it is evident in everyday behaviour.
I have been a beneficiary of this kind behaviour of the Cubans since 1995 and I have been a visiting Professor at the University of Havana since 1996.
I received the photos of a beaming Carlos and his wife, Nestor and my best friend in Asia, who is adopting into the nuances of our Little Treasured Island (Nuestra Isla Rica) from the 52nd anniversary of the Triumph of the Cuban Revolution, celebrated with the showing of the talents of a slew of young Cuban artists in Kuala Lumpur.
Gracias a mi madre Lucia en La Habana for introducing me to Carlos.
While this was actually taking place in KL, because of the time differences I was enjoying a pleasant day in Paris, news was arriving from Havana, my family in the USA.
As the poet Pablo Neruda (a great friend of Cuba he was) would say: each soul would need an anchor. My anchor now is this little space in Paris, grateful for the chance to enjoy the world from this little perch, grateful for those who facilitate this vista.
Today the Spirits had granted good winds and the walk along the streets of Paris was exhilarating. With the usual visits to café, boulangerie…. An older man, with looks that belongs to the Maghreb, was in his usual corner, asking for coins. He wishes me a Happy New Year… how meaningful to me, more than the plastic hollow shouts of the same across the oceans…
A new Country entered into the life of my self same friend in KL, when she was visiting India, she met and made friends with Iranians, who introduced her to Hafiz, Shahnameh and other poets and mystics from the golden age of Persian Poetry. They were volunteering at the Pilgrim site of Meher Baba in Central India. My best friend in KL had books and other information for me when I was in KL recently. I had promised to read one poem of Hafiz in original translation per day! It is not as easy as you think.
Suddenly, a few days ago, a soul from Tehran, makes an appearance in our skies. Communication is good and a certain level of knowledge transfer was quickly arrived at: to live the lives through the eyes of the other. As in the archaic societies of other centuries, a form of Gift giving, to give each other what one can, with expecting nothing in return, in the realm of possibilities of the countries we live in, with respect to tradition, history and the current ambiance.
So just in one short day, I knew this year 2011 is going to be an enchanting one as I had come to expect through some form of my own adivination: KL and Paris where I have inexhaustible amounts of Love, news of an appointment to teach in London, to continue my academic collaboration in Havana… a secret Persian breeze. Love notes from Vietnam, American Indian Country, …affections competing with themselves to pile high on the heart…
How could one not be Euphoric on such a day?
PS after writing the above, I confirmed my flight into La Habana! January 16th!