How time flies! I realise I haven’t posted anything in August and now it is the last day! I have been working on my book, writing an article for the Shiatsu Society news (for those of you in the UK hopefully it will be in the next Journal) on “Developing Yin First – Bonding with the Earth’, as well as having some time off in the countryside.
As my daughter, Rosa Lia, was in India recently, it prompted me to dig out the project I did when I spent time in India in 1981! Going to India was my first journey outside Europe and it had a profound effect on me. I volunteered on Women’s development projects, stayed in a tribal village, Lakhamandal near Dehra Dun in Uttarakhand, (Uttar Pradesh, when I was there) and experienced various village festivals as well as visiting temples and ashrams. I could have written many blogs on that if we had had the internet!
However I was also influenced by the thoughts of the poet Rabindranath Tagore, and Krishnamurti. They still inspire me today and so I would like to share some quotes from Krishnamurti as well as a poem by Tagore.
“To have compassion means to have passion for all things, not just between two people, but for all human beings, for all the things of the earth, for the animals, for the trees, everything the earth contains. When we have such passion we will not despoil the earth as we are doing now, and we will have no wars.” Krishnamurti
Here is a picture Rosa took in a temple which expresses for me compassion for things of the earth.
I can see now how I was drawn so much to the study of Chinese medicine which expresses this wholeness and interconnection.
For the introduction to my project I chose this poem of Tagore, which still resonates. Enjoy!
Judgement, by Rabindrath Tagore
Do not judge
Where you live is but a small corner of this earth
So far as your eyes reach
They encompass so little
To the little your hear
You add your own voice
You keep good and bad, black and white
In vain you make a line
To draw a limit
If a melody is hidden within you
Awaken it as you go along the road
In song there is no argument
No call to work
He who pleases will respond
He who pleases not will pass it by
What matter if some men are good
And some are not?
They are all travellers of the same road
Do not judge
Alas time flies by
And all debate is in vain
Look, the flowers blooming at the forest’s edge
Bring a message from the sky
For she is a friend of the earth:
In July rains
The grass floods the earth with green
And fills her cup to the brim
Fill your heart with simple joy
Scatter freely along the road
The treasure you gather as you go
I feel that there is also another side to compassion, wisdom.
Like two arms working together originating from one body of unconditional love.
Coming from the background of massage, I see myself doing rather than listening. Even if the doer believes the acts carried out are compassionate.
There is an old saying “fools rush in where angels fear to tread”
It requires courage to stop and listen during the treatment, to dance the dance of therapeutic, loving, respectful touch. To not supply the steps of the dance in the eagerness to do, to mend, to get somewhere.
To stop and really see the beauty of this being in front of you, of listening and awaiting the invitation, the hand that accepts the dance of bodywork in trust and overjoy of the already celebrated freedom of the tissues.
I feel that it is a thing to do with age. At some point I learnt that doing was the thing, I had to get busy to demonstrate my worth, and I have been busy for so much of my life doing, fighting, “helping”, so much activity and so little listening, so little stopping. My own insecurities and anxieties and their translation in “doing good” in the world have been like twin motors on a fast zodiac. On pausing I can see that my boat had a sail all along and that the breeze had been taking me anyway. I always knew that I was just too busy to remember.
This comment does not mean that I have arrived anywhere, but it is an invitation to trust and to dive deeper in my bodywork sessions.
Beautiful post. I too was drawn to Rabindrath Tagore many years ago. Reading his verses felt to me like the unity and the beauty in all expressed to gently and so clearly and with much love, with images that touch the heart.
I did not know about Krishnamurti but theverse you added here is beautiful. Very direct to the heart too.