A friend on FB posted 'Praying for Japan' and I wanted to write the same or similar but having no deity I felt at a loss and almost yearned for something divine that I could call upon to help these people facing horrors that even a lifetime of disaster movies really can't allow me to grasp, cars turning this way and that as the waves come, such terror......
Twenty minutes before I caught the outrageously flippant and casual coverage on CNN I'd been chanting to Siva. Siva for pity's sake, the destroyer! Now I know there are subtleties to Shiva and I know why his throat is blue but frankly.... well I need another mantra.
Perhaps this practice has softened me somewhat, does it do that? I used to be so cold, so distant and objective but I've been to little towns like this in Japan having lived in Japan for several years, seen the old couples in rural and coastal Towns, bent over old lady's smiling at me, the foreigner and I see these waves.....
...and I'm not used to weeping at news stories, or at facebook prayers and I'm really not looking for a deity but it's supposed to be a spiritual practice isn't it, don't I get some air miles from this mornings tapas that I can pass Sendai's way.
Curiously chanting helps, thank you Ramaswami for bringing this cynical Englishman to appreciate your chants. Trying to decide whether I could face work and anxious parents concerned about a lost Clarinet pad, their child with a coming exam, I found myself chanting. Hadn't noticed I'd started, Ganesha prayer but slower than I usually chant it. Throughout the day I've been listening to Ramaswami's chanting or chanting to myself, most of them I have no idea what they're about but somehow they helped. I used to chant a little when I was feeling irritated or a bit down, perhaps they kicked in automatically.
Tomorrow, I'll need to think of a post to bury this one and I'm undecided whether to post it at all but perhaps I'm not the only one wondering about this practice, this 'spiritual (?)' practice that feels so insular and personal and today so impoverished when faced with the terrors and sufferings of others.
It's what 5am in Japan, I can't help but wonder if anyone managed to sleep and I wish I could send a prayer of some kind your way.
I've tried to write three posts since this but ended up abandoning them, perhaps I'm done. Still, there's practice, always practice. I'm back to my regular early morning Vinyasa Krama probably with Primary and Intermediate on Friday and Saturday, Pranayama, meditation and Chanting, lots of chanting plus an evening meditation practice with a little asana and pranayama prep.
PS Nice site supporting the crew trying to control the Fukushima reactor