Life here on the land of the free and in the home of silence continues to flow. The Bentivi (kaskadee in Bermuda) still sings his song, which originated his name, every morning and at the end of the afternoon. It is interesting because in Brazil it really sounds like Bentivi and in Bermuda it really sounds like Kaskadee. Isn’t interesting how last silable dee and vi have a similar sound perhaps that’s why they are so similar physically. It is amazing how our ears work? Maybe in Bermuda it sings in English, which has to be British because Bermuda is after all a British Island, and in Brazil it sings in Portuguese. This is so funny I cannot stop laughing.
Well, continuing the news from this far land, the other birds always join in with the Bentivi and it is a symphony in the morning and as the day ends. The sweet oranges are finished for the season and the Caja Manga, and the lemons I guess also are finished. The mangos were finished quite while back. Some of these trees have a mind of their own and sometimes they bear fruits out of season. Let’s see what is going to happen. However the mulberry tree is bearing fruits again and has little green mulberries in it and the Surinam cherry (Pitanga in Brazil) is also bearing fruits again as well as the coconut tree have fruits. I am waiting for the coconut to fall so that I can drink the delicious water as they are so high and I cannot reach them.
This has been an eventful month. The meditation has been difficult and shallow at times but at other times it has been deep and profound. I started to do more contemplation and it has added another piece of quietness and peace just being at the balcony observing this beautiful skies, the sunset and the dawn, the green mango trees, the caja manga tree without its leaves, the coconut and palm threes with its green leaves whose green survives the winter. and the stars and the moon. On the 7 was full moon and it was really radiant and the backward has been clear as day at night. Here it seems that the winter just started and the sky has more dark clouds than usual.
However there has been some dark days this month where the ego attacked the mind in the land of the free and the home of silence. It was difficult. The ego knows where to attack and the ego does attack your most vulnerable points and mine is the stomach. So I have been struggled with difficult digestion and upset stomach. I have worked with all the power I can to make it better using meditation, medication, teas of different forms, green juices with lemon and so on. It really starting to pay off. These last three days it has been much better.
Our ego is amazing friends and what it puts on our way when it feels threatened is out of this world. These last three days I have been dealing with two cats who used to live here and were left in the neighbors. The neighbors next door moved out from here and left them floating around. Guess where they returned. I could not leave a mother and a baby hungry so I started to feed them. However I knew if they stayed here it would be trouble because soon she would get pregnant again as her boyfriend was starting to come around. So I had to move fast and I did with the value help of Ligia. We found them a shelter and they left on the eight. It was an art to trap them to be taken because the little baby had lived in the wild and it was very afraid and difficult to catch. I used all my behavior modification knowledge and skills and it worked. I brought them into house little by little by moving their food further into the house each meal and finally into the bathroom. When they were eating I locked them in there, and there they spend their last night here. In the morning they were pick up which coincided with the day of the week that I have someone here to help with the up keeping of the house. I was so glad and relieved. I felt that a heavy weight was lift out of my back. However it was interesting how I got so close to them that I almost gave up the idea of let them go but I knew it was best for them and for myself. This feeling soon went away although not completely for a while. Now I know it was the best decision and I am glad I took it.
The other day when I was in deep meditation and I suddenly notice a voice. The moment that I noticed it, the voice disappeared. I got a hint of it and I am sure it was going to say that I should stop this business of being really free of the chatters that clogs my mind. It was a voice coming from my head which appears quite independent of me. Don’t worry friends because I was not going to answer back. I just laughed. It was so funny that I could not stop laughing at the fact that at first I interpret it as coming not from me because there was no one here but me and I don’t believe in ghosts or spirits that talks to people. I guess if you don’t believe in them, they don’t appear to you.
They say in pop psychology that the problem is not that a voice talks to you because voices talks to us all the time. So the problem is if we answer back and besides forget to laugh taking this mad idea seriously. Thank God I laughed and did not take the idea seriously. If I did not laugh and took this seriously, it was going to be a problem mainly if I told someone about it because soon would be people in my door trying to take me to a psychologist or a psychiatrist thinking that after all this work I went really mad. It is also interesting because if you don’t tell anyone there is no problem, the big problem comes when you tell. The problem is if you don’t tell and you believe in it, you will become so afraid that you end up telling someone.
Then we would have to find a psychologist, even after being one, for therapy that we probably don’t need but could make use of it or a psychiatrist that will give us medication that we probably don’t need and perhaps don’t need to make use of it either. Perhaps we would have to find a psychologist or a psychiatrist because we are really in need of them. Not only because we answered the question but most important because we failed to realize that the voice came from our head although we experienced it otherwise and that we forgot that we are talking to ourselves and forgot to laugh. Isn’t this amazing? Just this small difference can make a big difference in our lives in the medical establishment, and we can be labeled of mentally ill, schizophrenic, or normal.
We have part of our minds that I call the ego. It loves to play trick on us hoping that we take it serious enough. If you really look at this world, you know what a mean because we take serious such mad ideas that it is unbelievable but it does make de ego happy. Can you, being sane, believe that God, being God, all love, all unity, all peace and all harmony could tell people to make war or to kill another people? Can you believe, being sane, that God chose some places on this earth that are more wholly than others where only certain people can visit because they are close or because they have money to pay their way there? Someone said, I forgot whom, forgive me for my forgetfulness, that “God created human beings at His own image and they return the compliment.” Perhaps that is the reason we impose on God our own standards so often. Can you believe, being sane, that love, if it is love, being all union, can make someone suffer? Can you believe, being sane, that violence and war can bring us peace? Can you believe, being sane, that there is a winner in any war? Can you believe, being sane, that by punishing children they will learn something important besides hate and anger? I could go on and on, on how insane our thinking can be and how distorted our minds can be become building a world of suffering and misery.
Who is normal and who isn’t it is difficult to discern if we look at the world’s affair throughout time and mainly today. Sometimes it seems without hope mainly if we are on the front lines or coming away from it with our mind so confused that we hurt even our immediate family which we loved dearly before the life in the front lines; we hurt our best friends which now are not best friends anymore because the alcohol and drugs have taken over and we auto medicate to put up with the monotony, boredom or guilt that have survived the front lines. I don’t mean only the front lines of war when I write this, I also mean the front lines of the ego where greed, jealousy, envy, anger, hate, arrogance, luxury and the violence of our desires and of our emotions manipulate our directions and kidnap our minds ruling our lives with iron hands.
The movie Brother Sun, Sister Moon tells the story of Saint Francis of Assisi. In the movie young Francesco used to go wild with his friends around town in the front lines of the ego and then he went to the front lines of war. He came back disgusted with both and was sick for days. Then one day he woke up and saw a bird on his window and began to chase it. From this day on he was silent and he step unto the land of the free and the home of silence. He would go around the fields after the flowers and talking to the birds. The whole town including his friends thought that he was mad. Claire, his beautiful friend, saw the light in him and one day on the fields she came to him and said: “They say that you are mad because you chase the flowers and talk to the birds. I thought you were mad before.” This young woman’s wisdom which led to the beautiful summary of Francesco’s whole life in these simple phrases is astonishing. No wonder she became a saint. This is what happens when you come back from the front lines of war or of the ego and you are disgusted with everything. You first become silent and listen to a different song, see a different world, and feel and smell things differently. Most of us come out of those lines and live a life of misery but not Francesco. He woke up unto another world as Saint Francis of Assisi, which makes him an example to be followed.
I feel like I am returning from the front lines of the ego and every moment I pray and send light to those I hurt in any way even without knowing it and to those who I think hurt me. Now after a month of silence, peace is returning slowly and fear is beginning to subsides. With fear being more out of the way, I can begin to forgive myself and by forgiving myself I am sure will also forgive others. Although for quite a while now in my life with the help of A Course in Miracles, with the help of Krishna, Siva, the Budha, Jesus, Socrates, and others, I have learned to take responsibility for everything that happens to me in my life and not to blame others for mistakes and my misery, sometimes I still do. When I do slide on the ego side and start blaming others, and in the exact moment that I become aware of this, I quickly correct myself.
However, when freedom and silence arrives at your door and you leave the front lines of the ego, my friends, I can tell you that it is a blessing. It is an opening of unbelievable proportions. It is a little similar when you are going on a straight narrow road around and down the mountains and suddenly in from of you is the ocean. There you have it, this large, so vast and so enormous space of water so blue merging with the sky that you become static mainly if you have never seen the ocean or if you have not seen it for a while. This is perhaps one little spec of light compared to the vast space that opens when you inhabits the land of the free and the home of the silence.
So my friends there is hope. Wherever we are let’s just for a few minutes of the day take a little step outside of the front lines of the ego. Let’s step on the land of the free and the home of silence. Let’s place aside the noise world. Let’s see the sunset; let’s see the moonlight; let’s hear our child’s laughter more often; let’s listen to the song of the birds; let’s see the trees around us; let’s bring more flowers into our homes; let’s take good care of ourselves and of those around us, and let’s stop running because it will takes us nowhere.
So my friends there is hope. I can assure you that the land of the free and the home of silence can take us from the Himalayas of suffering to the vales of healing; I can assure you that the land of the free and the home of silence can take us from the ocean of violence to the land of peace; I can assure you that the land of the free and the home of silence can take us from the fire of hate, greed, desires, and arrogance, to the waters of humility and harmony; I can assure you that the land of the free and the home of silence can take us from the darkness of our egos to the light of our Self. However my friends we need to take a step on that land and visit that house so that the light that shines in there uninterrupted by the ego’s affairs will brighten our lives for ever.
God bless you all.