Soul

Ancient Dusky Rivers

The river… sketching its way ahead…
[Source – Pixabay]
The Negro Speaks of Rivers

by Langston Hughes

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I’ve known rivers:

I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

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I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.

I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.

I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.

I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.

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I’ve known rivers:

Ancient, dusky rivers.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.


Rivers – streams, creeks, brooks or rivulets – love to flow; flowing towards a sea, lake, an ocean or another river, and at times also drying out. Rivers love to flow just like life.

Most of the earlier civilisations prospered when they settled around rivers, channelizing the same love when drinking its fresh water.

And when mankind sat in a circle around the fire and created stories – of the sun, the moon, the thunder and the wind – they fostered their imaginations and decided to pass on the love running in their blood to a lovely supreme one.

Different supreme ones took the centre stage at different places and myriad dramas unfolded that the rivers watched quietly, flowing, gushing with joy every moment.

Resisting neither the rocks nor filth, accepting the dead and plastic bottles alike, it continues to flow… for now.


Still like a mirror, moving like a reflection…
[Source – Pixabay]

Langston Hughes in his poem The Negro Speaks of Rivers connects the human soul with the world’s ancient rivers; the hands that cupped to drink water, the feet that crossed the river, whatever race it belonged to, felt the same damp calmness every single time they drank water and crossed the river.

Written during the early twentieth century when African Americans struggled to achieve equality and justice, Hughes, presenting a powerful historical perspective in this poem, emphasises the link between his ancestors, the ancient rivers and the rest of the human civilisation.

The Euphrates, often believed to be the birthplace of human civilisation, the Congo, powerful and mysterious, that saw the rise of many great African kingdoms, the magical Nile that carries with poise the secrets of the great Egyptian pyramids, the folklorist Mississippi that shared here the tales of Abraham Lincoln and American slavery – shows how rivers carry the past in its depth, carrying it always with love.

And the one who sees with love can sense the connection between rivers and souls, between them and us; we all started this journey together, the rivers are a testimony.


“I’ve known rivers:

Ancient, dusky rivers.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.”

Experience and history, though often oppressive, have not extinguished but rather emboldened the development of a soul, the birth of an immortal self, the proud ‘I’ that now speaks to all who will listen.

Christopher C. De Santis

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Lord Jagannath’s Eyes

Lord Jagannath by Vrindavan Das.
[Source – fineartamerica.com]

One eye says that the play is on.

The wheel of Time moves ceasing for none, winning over oceans, mountains, the sky, the wind and the fire.

People crowd to clench forms and beliefs, together they build and destroy. They wait to gauge for more and what is better.

Look now, how they shine, bright like fireflies, honest to the core; look now, how they lure, how they trick the tricksters, how they slay a man’s soul.

Speak not, for they are at work, cross-legged monks, meditating on what is less; speak not, for you will fail to express how chaotic is the chaos.

Rising high is the music of unity and harmony; falling face down is the corrupt, fake cry of every rigid mind.

Knowing the beginning, waiting for the end, it walks, it lingers, we walk, and we linger.  

Tala Pattachitra, Palm Leaf Painting – Odisha’s ancient art form.
[Source –
ethnicpaintings.com]

Second eye says that it is all absolute bliss.

There is no Space or Time and it binds none; the ultimate end and the ultimate start merges with the absolute existence.

Flowing in a silent music, dancing always, the ripple reaches the centre.

The Brahman breathes; formless, it is of the colour peace.    

Lord Jagannath’s eyes are the universe we see and the universe we can’t see. The happy devotee who bows, who worships, who sings, who gazes gets mesmerized by one of the universes, and by Lord Jagannath’s smile.

Our million eyes find a million revelations in Lord Jagannath’s eyes.

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Lord Jagannath, Lord of the Universe.
[Source – harekrsna.de]

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Sri Aurobindo

A way of life that knows simplicity and truth, that values every living thing, that changes with the changing time, staying focused all the while on the one who is beyond time, beyond space, the one who is eternal.


A life where every second is a celebration, where the soul sees the divine and dances with it, where the mind witnesses birth and death and yet continues. The drama of this wonderful life goes on.

A life that sees beauty all around, that values beauty, that breathes in beauty, that prays to spread beauty, understanding that the beautiful is the perfection is the divine… the divine which is within.

A life of action.

A life of responsibilities.

A life of renunciation.

A life of freedom.

The man who lived such a life was called Sri Aurobindo.

Sunflower Smile

Flash Fiction
The sunflower warmth just touched you.
Image from Pixabay.

Smile that sunflower smile, I love to see your beaming face, eyes closed and the rosy glow. Oh, come on! Remember those winters how we huddled to be in direct sunlight… warmth of the burning star touched our souls, and we smiled.

Peeping through the bushes, the sunlight always made me feel like I am in a photograph – yet to be taken.

While the tiny white daisies were busy decorating and tackling the mad wind, blushing, swaying and often taunting it for impeding their progress, the sunflowers stayed glued like a crayon drawing on the wall, letting the sun seep within.

Seeing the clouds approach, the sunflowers never trembled or rebuked the sky’s spongy friends… for the sunflowers could feel the presence of that warm burning star, part of it now stored inside them.

Maybe that’s why sunflowers’ signature reads ‘Forever’ rather than their glowing name. Oh, how lovely!  

Now just smile that sunflower smile, I love to see your beaming face, eyes closed and the rosy glow.

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Smiling sunflowers and the gin-soaked hour.
Image from Pixabay.

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The Moon Is Singing White Light

Perhaps it is better to know the world after you know yourself completely. When the fog will disappear and the pain will die out, you’ll see what you’ll see. It will be real and true. You can float blissfully only after you have drowned, till the depth pushes you back and alive. It is not the misty wind or the world that shakes me but my ideas. Everyone is quiet outside but the moon is singing white light. Until I say ‘see you later’ to the world and tap my mind twice, my soul will stand separately on the hill.
I touched my shadow and folded it and I have hidden it in the pocket. Don’t panic. Though I am running but I am looking for something…I am looking for a silent room with green grass and a tree to sit under it. I’ll unfold things without judging then.

You Think You Have Time?

It is time to know yourself.
Image from Pixabay.

“The trouble is, you think you have time”- a straightforwardly true quote.

But listen don’t worry… just take a deep breath. And allow your mind to be empty.

It is true that time is running but that doesn’t mean you have to run with it.

Instead, you should stop and discover your inner self.

Knowing who you actually are is a big question for which you should hurry; being aware of every breath that you take is important, and for this you should be quick.

Time is fleeting and there is a whole universe to explore within and without.

Our soul is something we don’t consciously think much about and rarely do anything special for it, for it to flourish.

So there is no time to waste in any trivial issue when inner peace is all you need.

The solution to this trouble is to be extremely quick in settling your mind without spending the time elsewhere.

A settled mind can make you sit calmly, a calm posture can make you concentrate, you can meditate and what comes next is even better… a mind that meditates can stop Time.


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Draw The Mind

Know thy mind.
Image from Pixabay.

With a pen in your hand and a paper in front of you, draw, draw with your eyes closed. You will see a lot of things but there’ll be something that you will see and feel at the same time. Draw it out. Be free. Don’t restrict yourself by worrying about the outcome. Move your hand to picture what your mind shows you- a line, a circle, a wave, a square, a tree, a lightening, the universe.  

You will know when to stop; you will know when to open your eyes.  

Smiling? The picture might be funny or absurd or both, nevertheless, it is your own mind. Don’t raise any questions but do think. You’ll get to know something about yourself for sure. Something like that you might not be a good painter but your inner self is. And that the sun might rise and the moon may set, the truth will always be with your soul.


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A Soul Nebula

Poem

Nebula helix_spitzer_2048 [Source – Flickr]

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The glowing dust took me away

Bluish green and reddish grey

Nearby star: a dot of light

Peeking through the dusty night  


Where am I? Earth or sky?

Dancing with gravity, can’t fly!

Still I am floating very high

In a hazy colourful sky  


A strong fluorescent light touches me

Immersed, I try to see

Emptiness fitting all around and silence

Assuring me the Grand Presence  


Sitting cross legged and eyes closed

I float with a pink rose.  

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