When I go out to meet the light, the shadow of my body follows me, but the shadow of my spirit precedes me and leads the way to an unknown place
- Kahlil Gibran

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Jaipur Day 2

I am in India. It has been only two days here but already I feel I have left my previous self far behind. The rules here are absolutely different. If I stayed here long enough I would forget the person that I was. This land is wilder than imagined, the people seem unrestrained and unpredictable. There is a bond here that exists through everything. It runs through man and beast, the dead and the living. Nothing is rejected, nothing seems intolerable. The human condition here stretches far across the spectrum, today I saw how much suffering we can endure on a day to day basis. There was a man lying in the middle of the road in a marketplace, his body was contorted in an extreme way, I could not fathom how he even managed to be there on his own. So much destitution but also brotherhood. The suffering burns away the ego and unites. A homeless man sits with his wife by the road, she is not to eat today but rather to fast for her husbands well-being. A sadhu walks by them and the man offers him one of his two rotis. I have little but it is enough for us. Let us not judge each other. Take from my plate.

In this place I feel bloated by what appears as overconsumption in comparison to the stringent lives of the Indian people where nothing seems to be wasted. In every photo I look grotesquely alien and out of place, I want to connect with this current that runs through this ancient land and its people. This bond seems inaccessible. On the surface it may seem that I have more than enough but truly I am the hungry one. Let me feel this unity. I want to have a real emotional connection, I have been starved of a real expression. Authenticity, Let me feel, I want to climb out of my shell. Let me touch you. Let me sit beside you as you pray for deliverance. I too must learn this prayer. Let us pray together, my need is desperate. My hunger is older and deeper. Fill my cup. Brother.

I am brought within the jostling van by a tap on my leg. "Look at this truck" my mother tells me. Looking out the window I see that it is packed with people, many are children. They sit on the back, there are men and a woman that holds her shawl to conceal her face. The children begin to smile and wave, I do the same then there are many flashes of smiles and even the woman reveals her face, it too is aglow. I feel my outstretched hand has been handed a treasure. In this particular span of time and space now opens a window of which the light of Truth shines through.

No comments: