sexta-feira, 31 de julho de 2009

Near to the heart of God

“There is a place of quiet rest, near to the heart of God” says the old hymn.
Such pious geography of the spiritual real can be beautiful and comforting. It all depends on the strings attached or not to the heavy laden figures we sing about. Sometimes, beauty and emotions are used to soak into our spirits a whole load of theological “truth”. A private God, whose heart beats according to the doctrines written in “our book”. Coming near to this vitiated “heart”, implies giving in into an exclusive path of faith and practice. Such a heart invites nearness because it also pulls away the disagreeing ones, the others, the godless, and the unbelievers. Such a heart could never be a resting place if only for the chosen ones.
Oh, yes, I can sing this song with joy, but only if sure that there is no place away from the sung heart, no one strange to its life giving work and, no possibility for a estrangement from it.
Believers or nonbelievers, religious of whatever religions or non religious, all are life responding to Life, life within Life, Life itself.
If we can sing this song without fencing and labeling the place – the place of life – near to the heart of God – Life – then we are free from the sugary manipulations of religion / power at the most primitive level.
Onaldo Alves Pereira

Dry season afternoon

We are surrounded by struggling trees, leaves falling and bare limbs stretched in the dusty dry air as if begging for help. Dry brown vines fall, melting down from tree branches.
A green happy stain in the dry ochre background, against all odds, the vegetable garden grows at its best.
This is mid dry season here.
The air humidity is below 15% and breathing hurts. Hot afternoons follow chilly mornings. The surfaces of everything crack. There is a soothing sadness about all of this.
My sleepy mind can’t function well and enters a dream world, half unspoken prayer, half liquid scenes of the place where I am. I doze away.
Onaldo Alves Pereira