Sunday, 27 July 2014
Listen to the Cries: What I would say to those in Conflict
written by Denis Kurmanov
This year has become a year of violence and disaster across the globe. Relations between everybody are deteriorating, histories are repeating each other and innocent people are being killed—Ukraine, Gaza, Israel, Russia, and the countless others that don’t make it to the front pages each night. I think to myself constantly about what I would say to a crowd of people, if somebody would listen to a lowly person like myself. (I am not saying that in any sort of ironic or dramatic affect, our voices have become much softer because gunfire speaks a language, unfortunately, those in political control, keep teaching the world.)
So I am going to say it, I’m going to post it here and have at least one other person see this and influence them……you……in such a way that we can stop this.
This is of course a dream of peace and compassion that I have based on a naïve view of who we are and what we can become.
That is what some will say back. They will say I am naïve and can only dream of some sort of peace and compassion that existed between nations for more than just a few years or so, but for ages. But you what, at this point, why not? What do we have to lose? Here it goes.
Remember your families in this time and remember from where they came. My mother told me a story about her father today. I hadn’t known where he was born (in a city named Orenburg in Russia). She was born in Uzbekistan and I was born in Moldova yet we are all of the same blood. To who can I pledge my allegiance? My father’s family is Russian but for about three generations was born in Uzbekistan. My mother’s family is Jewish and descends from Poland and Latvia. My father’s family was Central-Asian (near the borders of Turkey even) and converted to Russian Orthodoxy a long time ago.
To whom can I pledge allegiance? If I was to believe in any of your causes, my friends, I would have to believe in all of your causes. You, you, you are all my kin in some way. Our histories are filled with movement just as our spirits are bursting at the seems and are urging to move and to become something different each day. Sometimes this different takes place with a human that you’d never had expected, sometimes it takes you to the corners of the world you only heard about when learning “lessons.”
My kin, my brothers and sisters, to whom do you pledge allegiance? To death? Listen to the cries and breath my friends the salty air of the seas then speak. Scream and fire into the air with your weapons, cry out to God, pray for endless day, eat, drink, destroy status quos and set up ideals while spray painting on the walls of every building!
Who rules your spirit my friends? Revenge? Conflict? Hate? Who has the power over your own veins? That which wants your veins to dry out and only descend to dust, and not to another life of something else.
My friends, welcome to this world of awkwardness and derangement, welcome to the mess every single one of us is in. Tell yourselves and each other your stories of what you have experienced. We are of spirit and agility—our families have lived through strange eras of time and also times of good fortune. Beside the movement my family experienced there was a lot of death, early death for those who most would believe it is to early to die. A mother and child die together, a teen drinks himself to death because there is something out there he has to hate. He hates himself and hates everybody around him.
My friends I am not calling you immature or stupid, ignorant, outlandish or even evil. I am calling you humans and therefore I know the capacities we have for each other because we share it with each other each day. We can sit and smoke our hookahs in the streets with those who point the gun at the same target. Point up and scream then smoke the hookahs together. Speak to each other and welcome in agility and spirit that is not just within, it exists in the streets of even the horrid of places.
Who do you pledge allegiance to? To leaders who do not speak with us on terms we understand? The law is just until it violates us but rulers who toy with their citizens can and must be non-violently put down. It is a dangerous thing, my friends, to stand up to a gun with the indestructible iris of the eye. The iris of the eye is much deeper than the barrel of any gun my friends for it contains the abysses of ourselves, all of us, the evil and the beautiful. This can overwhelm the weapons my friends, trust me.
I crave a certain food and which one of you can make it? All of you? To whom do you pledge allegiance? Do a cause that denies food and culture to a people—conflict, a waste of time and food, or to the sizzling of the shawarmas, souvlakis and all the lamb you can imagine…..
Who will feed you in the hour of need? A human. Two will fall together with opposite ideals that govern them but when the irises of the eye meet they can overwhelm this. There is enough room for both of their violation and of their antiquity, and I mean the beauty of them both, for them to sit, stare, eat, speak and put down the weapons.
Welcome to this world of pain and dissatisfaction but also welcome to the only opportunity you will ever have to make things okay!
Welcome to the mazes that we play and that we are tossed into and welcome to the only way out—a cooperation of all.
Pledge allegiance to each other and therefore God, and therefore the goodness of ourselves. Pledge allegiance to the capability we have to eat and drink our teas together. Pledge allegiance to our children who have nothing to do with this but stand to lose their lives.
Pledge allegiance to this world of wonder and of awe. Stare up into the skies and see, even the smoke we have created. What a marvel to behold; ah, and welcome to the only chance we have to ever conquer hope and end her existence by making all we hope for possible….this shared world.
Thank you for listening
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