While my personal life was being swallowed by far too big historical events, a friend was leaving everything behind. Everything means the country she so loved, cultivated with her back parallel to the soil, barehand, seeding a new tomorrow, where she painted and her life rotated with the moons and the rains, the changing of the seasons and the heartbeat of mother nature.
She had to leave. I am sure she never wanted to do so. Notwithstanding the 30-something years of war, she was one with the habitat and what she was doing, with the earth below her feet and her sheltering sky.
My friend is one of the humblest persons I know and it strikes as being humble is sort of passé these days.
Of herself, only once, she said publicly: ‘Yes I am a journalist . I lived and worked mainly in Pakistan and Afghanistan for 35 years. With a spell in the Gulf too. ‘War Correspondent‘ is the term. But I was much more than just this. A Peace worker who worked for Women/Children’s rights, with farmers to rebuild agriculture, etc.. etc. I had my own Peace Project in what became – and is – a Taliban area of Afghanistan. The latter was, in many respects, the sum of my life’s dream….one which, in time, became a nightmare and I am commenting no further’.
We have never openly spoken about what happened to us. What we saw, how we felt, what we were forced to witness and swallow, the shattered dreams, what eventually we had to leave behind (nothing to do with personal belongings).
She knows I somehow know, I know she would understand.
Point is we both acknowledge some shadows cannot be left behind.
What happened to us is that we acquired what she calls raw emotions, additional screams: ‘The kind of scream that you and I hear and feel all the time. I pray that you are managing in your ‘new’ life. I am still fighting bouts of PTSD. Time will heal they say, but I know that the pain, the silent scream will never leave me. I, like you, I feel. I cannot simply turn my back and walk away´.
I told her that I needed someone who tells me she knows how it feels and to tell me I am not alone in the raging tempest.
I dared add: ´Two nights ago I was in bed and I was so sure I could hear children (many) crying. I was awake but could hear them. And I am in the country side. No one close to me. I guess war will never leave us, Z. Some days will be better than others but, in general, no, our wars will follow us. Always´.
´I often hear the crying too. And much more.´ Z. replied.
I woke up thinking about Z., today.
I turn my head West because, physically, she is there, beyond these mountains. Better: Z. is everywhere.
Even if it´s early morning, I am sure she´s already painting or working on her fruits and vegetables garden. Or writing her next gardening column. Or drawing the lines of her new Peace Project.
Some people cannot stop trying to bring a push forward to our world, even when they carry a heavy heart and hear screams. And much more.
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Oh thank you so much.
My friend deserved much more, to my eyes, but for now it´s all I can manage.
Thank you Mukul.
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This is more than a great story. This is (QUOTE) “The Talking Of The Soul”. This tells of memory. The human brain is wired to store memory – PERMANENTLY. Call it a warehouse of storage spaces if you like. Each space is a little room. Each room holds the visual and verbal memory of an entire phase passed through the life of the beholder. Each room has a door and each door has a key to open it. Something you hear, see, or experience any time, triggers a neuron to open the door to a particular experience, and all other related experiences. In the mere flash of a second an entire episode of ten, twenty, fifty, seventy years ago relives itself visually and in full narrative. Episodes or events may be small or large and of a short or long time span, the memory may be blurred by interference or blocked by self or outside induced psychology or electromagnetic cross wiring, faces and scenery may take on a different shape or color, all depends on the size and impact of a particular event, but the actual event remains intact, it remains stored in a place like a safe in a room where it cannot be erased.
What one remembers or chooses to remember are two different things. Life goes on in all its tribunals, driven by religious believes, industry, survival needs, political decision making, contemporary trends and a vast array of circumstances too numerous and continually changing to even contemplate categorizing. Thus, contemporary situations take center stage while passed events remain behind closed doors except when something or other triggers the memory – anything seen or heard at one point triggers an electromagnetic central nervous system, activating memory of one kind or other. Example: As a guitarist I only have to think of the title of a piece of music in my repertoire and I can see my fingers playing the scales and chords on the fretboard, and hear the music at the same time. When I don’t play a particular piece for some time, playing just the first measure will re-activate the finger (muscle) memory from bar to bar, a little at a time until the full memory has been restored. Nothing ever leaves the storage space of the warehouse called “the brain”.
Conditioning means that whatever has been seen, heard and read will become the foundation on which a living being, say a human, builds the framework of its life. A child born in a consumer society grows up in a room full of books, TVs, digital gadgets, tennis rackets, movies and war games amid walls plastered with posters of heroes, idols and icons. A child born in a war zone grows up seeing everything around itself including fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends, homes, streets and villages destroyed, it sees bombs exploding, sees people with guns and missile launchers, armed vehicles, it hears firearms and explosions – the real reality as opposed to the make believe reality of its counterparts who have never physically nor mentally experienced the suffering and traumas that follow. Both sides of the equation grow up to make decisions at one stage in their life or other, whether to submit to the down side of their heritage or come out of it as an advocate for change.
Indoctrination is the darkest, most sinister side of conditioning. It doesn’t happen by chance, it happens by psychological persuasion – the relentless imposition of false messages until the brain blocks all other information – buying everything physically and verbally sold on the consumer market place on the one hand while taking up arms and violent action against other beings, groups, governments or countries on the whole on the other, becomes a compulsive occupational obsession. As with everything else, one thing is not better than another. Conditioning by self perpetuating industrious activity and indoctrination by forced or psychological inducement are both part and parcel of the same school in which human education takes place and has taken place since the beginnings of civilization. All religions, politics and commercialized industries are part and parcel of the imposition of wars, slavery, social upheaval, global unrest, antagonism, corruption, and crimes at all levels of society.
Crime in a nutshell is the imposition of suffering on humans, animals, and the ecologic environment on which Life depends – every crime no matter how conceivably insignificant or of larger to massive proportion is a crime against Life, never has there been one crime that does not lead to another. As is overwhelmingly apparent now, in this age of 21st century technology, governing institutions, religious and otherwise, as the major law makers in every branch of society conduct their law making by resorting to crime themselves. Institutions are institutions, not individuals. Institutions adhere to rules and regulations supported by vested interests be it money, power, or both. Institutions exist for no human society equitable purposes whatsoever – if ever they had so, humanity would not be in the situation it is today.
Change means changing the thinking and conduct of society on the whole. It means there has to be the will and the means. The will to change can be seen in people in all sections of society, those who grew up in the consumer world and those who grew up in the world’s devastating war zones – individuals who made their own decisions as a result of their experiences, individuals who break the chains of conditioning and indoctrination. While such people comprise but a minority, so are those at the other end of the equation, those who thrive on the premise of short term but false concepts or ideologies. The vast majority of 7.5 billion people wish to live in a harmonious, cooperative world but are afraid of changing their familiar way of life while simultaneously detesting the system that holds them captive in slavery.
Slavery has been the foundation on which the entire Earth’s infrastructure has been built, right from day one. Day one was a time in the history of planet Earth long before any scriptures were chiseled on rocks and in stone, scriptures from which all religious/political books came into existence, books from which more and more religious/political doctrines sprang into being, books and politics which channeled human thinking and behavior which brought about the world of corruption and crime as it is today. Slavery in all its ugly forms including the mundane labor in industry’s factories and ecosystem exploitation plants in both the so called developed and underdeveloped worlds is and always has been the crime to which humanity has been subjected.
Underneath the surface of the conditioned subjectivity to life on Earth, humans have always searched for freedom, reason and purpose. They have looked to the Universe for answers, taken on board assumptions as truth, the notion of a supreme being to hold responsible for all their woes and insoluble problems. In the final analysis, who or whatever laid the foundations of a world at war with itself should no longer be of concern. It is time for this entire civilization to come together and wave its dark history goodbye. It is time to lay a new foundation on which to build a society free of the shackles of slavery, free of the destructive elements that rule this world. Whatever made this world what it is, both heaven and hell, let it be, let it go, and let it live in its own hell if that is what it likes. Whatever it is, it is but a memory engraved in our minds, a memory that blocks everything we as humans have to live for.
Take 24 hours off from the industrial world, 24 hours away from religion, politics, factories, TV, computers, mobile gadgets, news tabloids, sports events, entertainment, anti this anti that demonstrations, and using and killing any living being human or animal for whatever reason, and find the answers and solutions for a better world right within your own self. Then we can start closing the dark history books in our memory and get on with living for Life.
Bob Oort, administrator VOICES FOR CHANGE https://www.facebook.com/groups/voicesforchange/ and author November 25 International Global Consciousness Day http://www.thenovember25project.com/about-november-25.html
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All the stars of the universe to you, for this.
You helped me realising I should not be afraid of the irreparable damage done.
Thank you Bob.
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You’re welcome. We’re two of a kind. Out there in among the hyperactive madhouse there are many more like us. We should all come together and be the ONE VOICE FOR CHANGE THIS WORLD DESPERATELY NEEDS. We can only do so much independently, physically or verbally, we can do better united and in solidarity for World Peace. Thank you for your inspirational “TALKING OF THE SOUL”.
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I am touched by your words.
Thank you Bob