A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench. (Isaiah 42:3)
I have been standing where everyone has stood, on the top of the Cedars Mountain in Lebanon and thinking, as everyone has thought (though not, perhaps, said), that it was created in defiance of all imaginations. Such beauty, such wonder, such power, such greatness! It belittles not, it lifts up.
I have been standing there and my mind was drinking the wine of quietness and swimming in the ocean of possibilities. Evening was coming on and in the light of it all the colours so simple and yet so subtle seemed to fit together and make it perfect to tell a story. My story.
It was in November. The ninth maybe, or maybe a day or two earlier… date are so unimportant that we give them so much space in our lives; do you think about breathing?The air was so crisp, you could almost catch it in your whole body, as if in anticipation.I was sitting on the wooden bench in the old cathedral, surrounded by the smell of the burning incense and the glow of the candles. I have been waiting, and the waiting time my brothers is the hardest time of all! But out of hardship, as you have often heard, grows the most splendid of things: the purest, the simplest, the best.One can enjoy obscurity as easily as light. It is in the warmth of the womb that a baby is formed and in the depth of earth that a seed is buried.
I was waiting for her but she never came. Chanting filled the place but there was no music in me. My life was shattered before me. I was crushed. I could barely breath and all the bravery in me vanished when the last effort of holding my tears in, failed.
A measure of love is how often you are willing to lose because of it. I lost everything. I wanted to die but if God omnipotently says, "Thou shalt live," man shall not say, "I will not." The living always has hope and I was not dead yet. My heart was filled with a new hope in the midst of darkness. Hope transfigures even fear. I heard the poet repeating to me his old line, “Gather ye rosebuds while ye may” and so I gathered my strength as one soldier would for the last battle and left the haunting past behind me! I walked towards my car, slowly, gravely, but with steadfastness and for the first time in my life I realized that to love is not to grasp. I set her free. I set the idea of her free, and that was harder.
As I was walking, with nothing behind me and nothing before me, it started to rain. At other times I would have been annoyed but today I thought it was a blessing. It washed me and I was glad. I was the bird that evaded every net: the wild deer that leaped every pitfall. As the storm was getting stronger, lightening filled the sky in almost an organized orchestra! And to my eyes it seemed as if some sudden vision had been given me! Sing to the Sun, and it will rise! Dance to the wind, aim high, the Highest and you will find your way. Even as the voice spoke the earth rocked beneath my feet! I was stirred and I turned in circles. One idea was pressing on. To start singing… to start dancing… just there in the middle of nowhere… I thought, dear me, I will look like a fool! I will seem like an idiot… but what if I was already a fool, what if the idiots are the smartest. I had to try. I had to do it. When one thought is that strong, it is hard to keep it in. I sang and danced till there was no force left in me and I decided to abandon my car and sleep in the field.
When I woke up, I found myself under a cedar tree and through its young branches sunlight glimmered, green and gold. All the air was full of a sweet mingled scent! I laughed, and the sound was like music, or like water in a dry land; I have not laughed like this in a long time.
By now, I was ready for my morning coffee. I thought I will take it in one of the small village cafes! It was a perfect day! It is always a perfect day before that imperfect thing happens, obviously. I was looking for my keys but I could not find them! I searched all my pockets, my backpack, everywhere around me, in vain! I knew they were with me last night, I came using my car! Maybe I forgot them in it, I believed. So I walked in the direction where I parked it, wishing that today the rain will spare me, and it seemed like it will. I was not planning on another session of madness! One is enough to set one’s life on the right tracks: Jonah slept in the whale’s stomach and I in the earth’s; his mission was Nineveh, mine was my life. I was ready!
As I was heading towards my car, I notice the windows down! Oh noes! I shouted! It must be filled with all the waters from last night’s showers! I panicked. I rushed to inspect the damages but to my great surprise, I see someone occupying the back seats!
I should have warned you that my story was a classic, I should have liked to sound as if it was a novelty but it is not, yet, certainly, for those who love life, nothing is a repetition. Everything is new under the sun for him that is not vain!
Nevertheless, I will spare you the details and skip to the end… She carries sunshine wherever she goes and I diffuse happiness around me. We met on the ninth of November (she remembers dates). I loved her right away. She took time – to wake up first- but time my brothers is the sweetest challenge of all.
Ode To Joy
Oh friends, not these sounds!
Let us instead strike up more pleasing
and more joyful ones!
Joy, beautiful spark of divinity,
Daughter from Elysium,
We enter, burning with fervour,
heavenly being, your sanctuary!
Your magic brings together
what fashion has sternly divided.
All men shall become brothers,
wherever your gentle wings hover.
Whoever has been lucky enough
to become a friend to a friend,
Whoever has found a beloved wife,
let him join our songs of praise!
Yes, and anyone who can call one soul
his own on this earth!
Any who cannot, let them slink away
from this gathering in tears!
Every creature drinks in joy
at nature's breast;
Good and Bad alike
follow her trail of roses.
She gives us kisses and wine,
a true friend, even in death;
Even the worm was given desire,
and the cherub stands before God.
Gladly, just as His suns hurtle
through the glorious universe,
So you, brothers, should run your course,
joyfully, like a conquering hero.
Be embraced, you millions!
This kiss is for the whole world!
Brothers, above the canopy of stars
must dwell a loving father.
Do you bow down before Him, you millions?
Do you sense your Creator, o world?
Seek Him above the canopy of stars!
He must dwell beyond the stars.
"An die Freude"- Friedrich Schille