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Re: Sweetness-Smile and Thunder-Drum

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  • assistantmummer
    Dear Durga-Mata, I m so glad that you were along for the journey on this poem. I think Sri Chinmoy s philosophy is that we should not only claim his
    Message 1 of 26 , Jun 23, 2008
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      Dear Durga-Mata,

      I'm so glad that you were along for the journey on this poem.

      I think Sri Chinmoy's philosophy is that we should not only claim his
      realisation as our own, we should also claim each other's achievements
      as our own.

      If you look at me as an individual, I am very flawed, limited. But
      still, once in a blue moon I manage to do something good, like write a
      poem that reflects the Master's light. When I share this with others,
      I hope it is not all showing off, but rather adding my light to the
      sum of light.

      We are all stars in Guru's heart-sky. Each of us twinkles in our own
      way. When we shine together, we illumine the night sky.

      I think Guru likes me to share these poems because some people may be
      helped by them, even though they know I'm not a role model in the
      spiritual life - just a "crazy poet" at heart. One can forget about
      the poet and let the poetry work its magic. Then, even though it is
      not coming directly from Guru, even though it is one step removed -
      written by another's hand - at times you may feel it is his
      thought-stream being expressed. Perhaps on rare occasions Guru likes
      to perform this kind of miracle to strengthen people's faith. As
      Kaushalya said so beautifully:

      "There is no use trying to run away from the pain which sometimes
      feels like a deep, sharp wound. The pain invites us to take the
      journey into the Divine, make the quantum leap, gradually or quickly,
      as is possible, to honestly explore what we can each do in order to
      live divinely. Guru always said that we get joy only by crossing
      hurdles - and this is a most demanding hurdle, which Guru would
      probably say is the greatest opportunity."

      So in one way it is not surprising at all that Guru would help some of
      us find the words to ease the crossing of that hurdle.

      I don't understand it all myself. The human in me tries to cope with
      the burden and strangeness of it. But these poems give me joy. They
      also help me try to be a better person. I think there's a tacit
      understanding that in these poems, it's my responsibility to identify
      with all the disciples and ask questions which come from their hearts,
      their daily struggles.

      In Guru's stories, sometimes there is a kind of "archetypal disciple"
      who is not any one person, but who represents the ideals, aspirations,
      cares and concerns of all the disciples. In these dialogue poems, I
      know intuitively that is the person I must be. (Tejvan, maybe that's
      why you feel so much a part of the dialogue.)

      So it's not about me at all; therefore, there is no reason for anyone
      to feel jealous. After all, as Abhinabha suggested, if Sri Chinmoy is
      the ventriloquist, then I am just the wooden dummy!

      Durga-Mata, I don't always post everything I write down. Some things,
      I feel, might be too boring or didactic. I remember there was another
      poem (message #22112), where you felt troubled by these lines:

      "Son, since I left the physical,
      So many people have seen me vividly
      In the inner world.
      It is not their mental hallucination,
      It is their true spiritual experience
      Founded on aspiration."

      This poem sets up a dramatic situation. There is a disciple who is
      upset over the physical death of his Master. He says he sometimes
      feels blind and lost. He uses the phrase "hopelessness-life." The
      Master tries to console him and strengthen his faith. It is meant kindly.

      The Master explains (in effect): "Well, if you are spiritually dead
      then I will be a dead Guru to you. But if you aspire, I will be your
      living Guru, I will speak constantly inside your Aspiration-Heart."
      This message is all love and compassion, but at the same time it asks
      the disciple to raise his aspiration. (Sound like anyone you know?)

      There is a passage from Sri Chinmoy Answers, Part 9. There he gives
      all kinds of advice on how one can visualise him:

      "Now, you have seen me millions of times. If you want to see me when I
      am not physically present, for inspiration, just imagine, 'My Guru is
      right in front of me.' Imagination is not mental hallucination. Never!
      Imagination is a world of its own. Imagination is reality, but we have
      to bring it down to the physical plane. First we bring imagination
      down, and then it becomes concrete. When I write a poem, when I
      compose a song, when I create anything, it comes from that
      imagination-plane.

      "When you go back to New York, I may be in Singapore or somewhere
      else, but try to imagine that I am standing right in front of you.
      What is wrong with it? It is not mental hallucination. If I have a
      dear one in my life, whether it is my mother or my father or somebody
      else, I want to see that person. True, I may not be able to see him
      right now with my physical eyes, but with my inner eye, with my inner
      feeling, I can easily imagine that person to be in front of me. Then,
      let me make that person very real, very concrete in my life...

      "So in your case I am telling you, even if you are physically away
      from me, if I am in one country and you are in another, you can easily
      feel that I am standing right in front of you. There is one disciple
      whose name I do not want to say, but she is an elderly lady. O God!
      She says that wherever I go, or wherever she moves, from this room to
      that room and another room, always she sees me, she feels me. Now,
      where is her city, and where is New York? She is not in New York.
      Perhaps I will never in this lifetime see that person on the physical
      plane. Never, never! But it is not her mental hallucination. Only on
      the strength of imagination, everywhere she sees me right in front of
      her, beside her - everywhere."

      http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/books/1276/2/6/

      But he does not say that this lady is better than anyone else, or that
      others are bad or unaspiring because they do not see him. He is only
      trying inspire people.

      Durga-Mata, you mentioned your dreams... Recently, an article by
      Vidagdha was published in a Sufi magazine. She wrote it soon after
      October 11. It is not about Sufism, and not much about Guru's
      philosophy. It is a very beautiful personal account of her
      discipleship, and her feelings in the immediate aftermath of his
      passing. She writes:

      "It is very difficult for me to express in words what my Guru Sri
      Chinmoy meant to me and shall forever mean to me. Three weeks after
      his earth-departure, there are days when I wander aimlessly, repeating
      'My Guru is no more, my Guru is no more.' At such times, no philosophy
      in the world, however profound, can assuage the pain in my heart or
      halt the flow of my tears. Wherever I cast my eyes, all the color and
      light seem to have gone out of the world. I can see people going about
      their daily lives and I wonder how they can continue, how I can
      continue. Life seems to be unreal, meaningless.

      "But then, unexpectedly, something happens. Guru's infinite peace
      steals into my heart; I am surrounded by his vibration. In my mind, I
      hear his voice; the outer world is alive with hints of his nearness.
      And in my dreams, he is ever-present."

      How Guru reveals himself to others - whether sweetly and formlessly as
      peace; or in a powerful, vivid form; or as a strong poetic voice - is
      very personal. One person will be pleased and not frightened if he
      comes to them in a certain way and not some other way.

      I think the Guru has to be so careful. He tries to please and court
      our heart and soul, but he does not want to frighten our physical mind
      or vital consciousness, which may rebel.

      The mind and vital use only a small portion of the light of the
      Divine; but they like to feel they are boss, they are in control. So
      if Guru comes to us in too powerful a form, the mind and vital may
      feel like they are being directly challenged, and they may stage a
      revolt. But if Guru works gently by stealing into our hearts with
      peace and joy, this preserves harmony in the inner family, while we
      continue to grow daily in devotion. Therefore, we should not be upset
      if he does not present himself vividly.

      On the one hand, bhakti yoga - the yoga of love and devotion to God -
      is said to be the easiest path. On the other hand, it can try our
      hearts. As human beings, there can be moments when we are reduced to
      begging or threatening God. We feel we have given all that we can and
      still he is not giving us his Nectar - still he is torturing our
      hearts, playing hide-and-seek. The struggles of the bhakta are
      expressed with unparalleled charm and intensity in this song by Sri
      Chinmoy:

      Swapane Parash Diye Jao Priya Jagile

      You touch me softly and compassionately
      O Beloved of my dream.
      The moment I awake I see You hiding far,
      very far from my vision light.
      When I roam on the peak of the mountain
      You I see lost in self life.
      When I call You to come near me,
      Smiling You run away.
      O my Beloved Supreme, by deceiving me always
      Do You really get joy?

      http://www.srichinmoysongs.com/songs/supreme_i_sing_only_for_you/swapane_parash_diye_jao_priya_jagile_gpi926229182

      Anyway, in your dream when you say, 'Guru, I want to realise you,' I
      don't take that as arrogance. I think it's more like a child
      expressing spontaneous oneness with her Father. "What You are, I want
      to become."

      As for the other dream at the end of your message, I think many
      disciples share the same simple prayer: "Guru, don't let me forget
      you, don't let me lose you." After all, we see that both through the
      ignorance of the world, and the serious blunders people sometimes
      commit, it is possible for them to become forgetful or blind.

      When people memorise the Master's writings, sing his songs, invoke his
      consciousness, serve his Mission, and develop close friendships with
      fellow disciples, they are forging karmic ties that will help them not
      only in this lifetime, but in future lifetimes to find their way back
      to this path.

      It is said that your thoughts at time of death will dictate your
      afterlife and future birth. But you cannot easily choose what you will
      think at time of death! It will be what you thought about your whole
      life. Therefore, when you are fortunate to meet a great Master like
      Sri Chinmoy, it is being said to fill your whole life with thoughts of
      him.

      Michael

      P.S. I really admire people who know all the names of the different
      flowers. As a lifelong city boy, that is something I never learned.
      Durga-Mata, I think you could even give Tolkien a run for his money!


      --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, dmchaudhurani
      <no_reply@...> wrote:
      >
      > What a joy. What a wonder.
      >
      > It is 18th June, more than a week since I have had access to a
      > computer and internet. I drove home to London tonight from Birmingham
      > after an exhausting 'long weekend.' I set out for the journey a little
      > before 5pm to miss the traffic but before I reached the motorway I was
      > simply falling asleep with tiredness. I stopped in a layby and slept
      > for two hours.
      >
      > The first part of the journey was lovely with evening light bright on
      > light-green fields where hay had been cut and all the myriad greens of
      > the different trees tossing and swaying in the wind. It is June, the
      > month of roses and the pink wild roses are cascading over the
      > hedgerows in profusion. The elder flowers are also in full bloom with
      > their creamy-white flat discs of tiny flowers arranged like
      > dinner-plates all over the bushes. They are fragrant and taste
      > delicious. (You can dip them in batter and fry them but my mother has
      > a great recipe for elder-flower cordial which combines them with
      > lemons. She usually chases us around at this time of year to pick them
      > for her - but this year they are so prolific she says she has enough
      > just from the hedges in her own garden.)
      >
      > Last time I drove on this route was in early May when the white
      > hawthorn blossom was out. It is also called May blossom. The hawthorn
      > trees are very slow growing and many are very ancient. They have a
      > strong link with pre-Christian spirituality and are also called fairy
      > trees so perhaps the leprechauns keep their crocks of gold buried in
      > their shade.
      >
      > Last time I drove this route the hedges were laced with hawthorn
      > blossom and the verges deep in Queen Anne's Lace which is a delicate
      > white umbelifera. There were meadows full of buttercups and cows (that
      > had not gone straying in the woods.) There were bright fields of
      > yellow oil-seed rape and the cornfields were just like grass. That
      > time of year is so intense with growth and blossoming it is almost
      > like an explosion. Since then the white horse-chestnut-tree candles,
      > the pink, white and purple lilac, the yellow laburnam, the sweet
      > scented linden or lime blossom, and all the spring flowers have come
      > and gone. Now the oil-seed fields are greyish-green with only a
      > scattering of their last flowers showing still in odd corners - and
      > the cornfields are bristling with swelling blue-green wheat-ears. The
      > barley fields are lighter yellow-green, the flowering heads with their
      > long whiskers are arched over and just starting to change colour.
      >
      > The banks of the motorway are rich in many hues, the ox-eye daisies
      > are still dominant but their snow-drifts are often mingled with other
      > flowers, a deep-yellow vetch mingles and in places transforms the
      > banks to gold, shining red poppies grow from cracks and crevicies in
      > stone walls that border the motorway in places and the soft and
      > subtle shades of many different flowering grasses grace the verges
      > everywhere. There is one called 'Yorkshire Fog' that is quite a strong
      > shade of pink. Others are tall and silvery as they sway in the wind
      > and some are deep red-maroon - almost purple as they hang out their
      > stamens in flower.
      >
      > The sun set slowly, in and out of cloud which streaked a busy sky but
      > I was driving east so I could only admire the sunset-clouds as they
      > lit up with shades of pink and mauve in the mirror. I turned off on
      > the road that heads west (to link the M40 with the M4) hoping to see
      > the last of the sunset glory but by that time it had almost faded from
      > sky so I was feeling a bit sad. But then, quite unexpectedly, I saw
      > the moon. It was a full moon, just rising. The sky behind the moon was
      > a clear blue merging into a band of softest pink. The moon was white,
      > like a cloud. But as I continued on the journey the blue deepened and
      > the moon brightened, smiling at me in its shining way. It was like a
      > friend who had come to walk with me on the last part of the journey
      > because they saw I was tired and my spirits were down.
      >
      > If I had known the M4 was closed for repairs I would not have chosen
      > that route - nose-to-tail traffic for miles ... and miles ... (who
      > would choose to live in London?) It was nearly 11pm by the time I
      > reached home. I was very glad to get in. I was thinking that as soon
      > as I'd had a drink and a bite to eat I would get straight to bed. But
      > now at 2.00 am I am still up, still going strong. I thought I would
      > just read the latest postings over my supper - but all the great
      > stories called to me. As usual I was completely re-freshed and
      > re-inspired by Inspiration site.
      >
      > I have watched Kedar's video about the wonderful running Nun and read
      > all the postings from the past week with great enjoyment. But my
      > favourite message has to be yours Michael. And, thanks to my own
      > dream-meditation experience, (which I wrote about in
      > 'Gratitude-Blossoms 8 of Daisies and Dreams)I was able to embrace your
      > sweet and inspiring 'conversation' without any 'emotional
      > cross-currents this time.' Your insights and poem-conversations really
      > are a blessing to us all. I will just expand on some personal
      > favourite passages:
      >
      > .....Father, forgive me. But about Your messengers...
      >
      > "Yes, My son?"
      >
      > Some people say they are bringing messages from You. Should I believe
      > them?
      >
      > "It entirely depends. If My consciousness is there, if your heart
      > tells you it is genuine, and it does not contradict My teachings, then
      > there is no harm in it. But do not place too much faith in messengers.
      > Realize Me for yourself. Then no one can deceive you......"
      >
      > This links so closely with the 'message' I had in my dream. In it I
      > said, 'Guru, I want to realise you.' When I sensed this message from
      > my dream, part of me felt that it was arrogant in the extreme to think
      > that my soul could be speaking to Guru about that and even though I
      > knew in my heart that it was true I hesitated to share it in a post
      > because I thought it would sound as if I was arrogant. I thought it
      > would sound as if I was claiming to be somehow a specially 'good'
      > disciple or 'high soul'. I had so many conflicting emotions. If
      > Kamalakanta had not posted what Guru wrote about imagination and
      > realisation I would never have had the confidence to override my
      > doubts and insecurities and share it.
      >
      > That brings me to another part of your 'conversation' which I find
      > particularly helpful:
      >
      > ..........Father, if someone brings a message from You, does that mean
      > they are
      > a high soul?
      >
      > "No, not at all. It just means I have a little Compassion for that
      > person. Someone brings a message from Me. But how many other messages
      > have they ignored or disobeyed? I can work even through your
      > impurities. So if someone brings a message, that does not prove they
      > are a high soul.........."
      >
      > I share the following special prayer and insight with a great sense of
      > oneness and gratitude for the beautiful way that you express it:
      >
      > ..........Father, when I first sensed Your inner presence, I was so
      > overjoyed I
      > wanted to pray to You never to leave me. But now You have given me
      > Wisdom-Light, so my prayer will be different.
      >
      > "What is your prayer, My son?"
      >
      > I pray that You will open my eyes, open the eyes of my brothers and
      > sisters, open the eyes of the world, so that we know You are with us,
      > know You are for us, and know You could never, ever leave us.
      >
      > "My son, please allow Me the fullness of time to grant your
      > prayer.........."
      >
      > And finally a nice anecdote that relates to your 'easier prayer:'
      >
      > .........Father, I realize it is a big request. May I make an easier
      > prayer?
      >
      > "Son, what is your easier prayer?"
      >
      > I pray that You will never let me forget You, whatever happens in my
      > life........
      >
      > Some years ago Keitan produced the Christ-Play in New York. My son was
      > in it and my husband went to New York after Celebrations to see the
      > play. It was the only time he went to New York and most significant
      > for our family. 'Amazingly' a disciple-friend of mine was going
      > through a tough time and when I said she should go to New York - even
      > if she could only get away for a weekend - she asked if I would go
      > with her and paid for me - so I was able to be with my husband and
      > Bijon at Guru's Feet during that special visit. The weekend 'just
      > happened' to be our wedding anniversary, too. Guru is so perfect with
      > the 'games' he plays.
      >
      > When I came home I was absolutely full of joy but then, when my son
      > and my husband returned and I learned that they had flown back in the
      > same plane as Guru and had enjoyed some quite wonderful experiences
      > both at Aspiration Ground - when Guru meditated on my husband and gave
      > him a big red rose - and at the airport when there were no other
      > disciples there and they had been able to speak to Guru in a unique
      > way, I started to have some problems of jealousy.
      >
      > I fought and fought my jealousy all through that day, just throwing
      > out the thoughts and emotions each time they arose, reminding myself
      > of the many blessings I had received, crying to Guru to help me and
      > take all the undivine thoughts and emotions - but they were too strong
      > for me to overcome.
      >
      > I guess most of us have sometimes felt a great longing to be able to
      > go up to Guru and talk to him in an outer way. I knew that he had
      > spoken like that to my husband and if I could feel true oneness I
      > could share in his experience but I just couldn't do it.
      >
      > I knew that Guru was constantly trying to teach me to go within and
      > develop the inner connection which is unlimited by time and space -
      > but I couldn't do it.
      >
      > I knew that jealousy is one of the worst undivine qualities - but I
      > couldn't overcome it. I was reminding myself constantly of all the
      > blessings he had given to me and cursing my ingratitude - but by the
      > end of a day of constant inner battles - which I lost - I was just in
      > floods of tears.
      >
      > That night I had a mundane dream the details of which I have long
      > forgotten - but at one point in it I was sitting in some kind of
      > auditorium. It was a bit like a cinema with seats in rows that stepped
      > up so the seats behind were higher up than those you were sitting on.
      > Suddenly I turned round in my seat and found that Guru was sitting
      > exactly behind me. There were no other disciples anywhere in the
      > crowded auditorium.
      >
      > I was so overjoyed and excited to see Guru sitting there that I jumped
      > up in my seat, turning round and kneeling on it, facing backwards and
      > just gazing at Guru with delight. he said, 'What do you want?' and I
      > replied, 'Guru, Let me never loose you. let me never loose you.' I
      > think I just kept on saying that same thing. And he was just smiling
      > like the sun. It is something most precious, one of my rare
      > dream-encounters which I will never forget.
      >
      > When I read:
      >
      > .........Father! I feel that You not only granted my prayer, but also
      > embraced
      > me most powerfully!
      >
      > "Son, I cannot forget you. I am most proud of you. I am most proud of
      > all who are thinking of Me and holding Me in their hearts."
      >
      > Then You will not let me forget You?
      >
      > "Son, if you ever forget Me, My Sweetness-Smile shall chase you
      > devotedly. My indomitable Thunder-Drum shall waken you soulfully......"
      >
      > ..... it brought the biggest smile to my face and made me feel that
      > you are a very special brother to bring not only my dream-prayer of
      > many years ago back into my mind - but also to give me Guru's reply.
      > Personally I will be just as happy to receive the Thunder-Drum as the
      > Sweetness Smile. It is just another form of the intensity of our
      > Guru's Love. And even more strongly than his Smile it will force me to
      > be for him what he wishes me to be - which is my hearts only and only
      > longing and desire.
      >
      > Durga-Mata
      >
    • assistantmummer
      Dear Doris, I m so glad that you have your own blog now, where you can expand upon your thoughts and feelings, and also add photos and images that you like. I
      Message 2 of 26 , Jun 23, 2008
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        Dear Doris,

        I'm so glad that you have your own blog now, where you can expand upon
        your thoughts and feelings, and also add photos and images that you
        like. I feel very complimented that you would mention me and even
        translate some of my writings into German. I know translation can be
        very challenging work, so if you ever find it difficult, maybe you can
        check with other German speakers and see if they have suggestions.

        I never want to create any misundertanding with anyone - just add my
        light to the sum of light. I call my writings poems and stories and I
        sign my name to them. I never insist that anyone has to subscribe to
        any particular theory of what they are. One can say that they are
        "inspired by Sri Chinmoy." Just how deeply they are inspired, each
        person can decide for himself.

        Sometimes I provide a bit of "provenance." In the art world,
        "provenance" means "Where did this come from? Tell us what you know.
        You say it is a Degas, but why should we believe you?" So I try to
        explain as best as I can, but it is not an exact science.

        If you share my writings with others, I hope you will not trumpet them
        loudly, but rather offer them gently.

        I see you made one link to a short story I wrote in 2005. That was a
        private project not much related to Sri Chinmoy Centre. It might not
        be of much interest to disciples, so maybe it would be beter to delete
        that link.

        Thank you,

        Michael


        --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
        <no_reply@...> wrote:
        >
        > Dear Michael,
        >
        > I was very inspired and encouraged by Tejvan's comment.
        >
        > On my German blog people can read now one of your essays, a story,
        > and poems, including the story fragment "The Reclusive Disciple" and
        > the poem "Sweetness-Smile and Thunder-Drum."
        >
        > I began to translate both works of your's into German and would like
        > to publish them with your kind permission on the German Sri Chinmoy
        > website.
        >
        > Thank you for sharing more of the master's Light-offerings.
        >
        > http://doriscott.blogspot.com/
        >
        > Doris
        >
      • sumangali_m
        Dear Michael Yes I do know what you mean when you say it may be easy to write but difficult to be a writer. It may be yet more difficult to be a writer with a
        Message 3 of 26 , Jun 23, 2008
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          Dear Michael

          Yes I do know what you mean when you say it may be easy to write but
          difficult to be a writer. It may be yet more difficult to be a writer
          with a lot of capacity. I wager it is not only your capacity but your
          humility which allows you to write for God. Either way, it is a very
          rare combination. If you cannot accept my praise, do at least accept
          my gratitude for sharing your gifts with us.

          My compliments were meant sincerely, but of course carried the
          unspoken small print which accompanies everything we do in life: all
          is accomplished by God's Grace, and not by our capacity alone. If my
          words brought accidental pressure with them, then you are at liberty
          to overlook them, but I would rather not take them back.

          With utmost respect, I disagree with some parts of your message.

          I do not agree that if you can do it "anyone can". We are each a
          portion of God, thus at the root we are not just equal, but one. I do
          not therefore see the Master literally as having favourites, I know he
          is far above that. He gives what is needed, (not what is deserved or
          what takes his fancy), but that is not equal at every time and in
          every case.

          If God has given one person capacity in one field, and that person
          also has the willingness and humility to offer it for His sole Use,
          then will He not use that instrument with more joy, and more frequency
          than others? Of course God can do as He pleases, but the Cosmic Game
          follows universal rules and practicalities, or it would be no game at all.

          Granted, nothing is impossible for anyone. God can do as He pleases,
          but He does not find joy in making us all alike, or the Cosmic Play
          would star only kings. Right now I tell you I could not run even 3
          miles without a sizeable miracle, let alone 3100. Following your
          theory you may say I lack only willingness to try, but I say that is
          not so. It is only a very few whom God blesses with that level of
          running capacity. Of course I will always try my best, and aim to
          transcend myself in any small way I can, but can I expect to excel in
          sports when I was built a poet? It is like trying to write with a
          football.

          You are right in that it is not about you, or about emulating you, or
          about weighing up your imperfections against your creations, "it's
          about the boundless love that Sri Chinmoy has for all of us", and that
          is worth celebrating in every achievement, in every field, in every
          unique individual. The Master lives on in those who love him. Now he
          is gone outwardly I am drawn most to those who remember him clearest
          and feel him closest. That does not mean I would make gurus of them.

          I still maintain that what you have felt and written is remarkable,
          and I am not short of people to celebrate it with me. That does not
          mean that it is the only remarkable thing in the world, or that I wish
          I could have done it, or that I'd like to put you on some bleak and
          draughty pedestal, but neither does it mean that your gift is not
          special. God may love us all equally, but are we all pleasing Him
          equally? I dare say not.

          Pardon my belligerence. It is kindly meant, only I am in a spate of
          rebuffs (yours a particularly gracious and eloquent example). The Game
          is more fun when the ball is caught as well as pitched, but I will
          content myself with pitching for now.

          (Go long if you go at all.)

          Sumangali



          --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, assistantmummer
          <no_reply@...> wrote:
          >
          > Thank you to Priyadarshan, Sumangali, Sharani, Nicholas, Nirmala,
          > Durga-Mata, Tejvan, Abhinabha, Kaushalya, Doris and Purnakama for all
          > their kindness.
          >
          > I'm torn between accepting your comments graciously, and protesting
          > that you make me sound too special...
          >
          > It's not about me, it's about the boundless love that Sri Chinmoy has
          > for all of us, including the runners bravely challenging unimaginable
          > distance with his help.
          >
          > I found Sumangali's pen simile charming, but I don't want to be Guru's
          > favourite pen (if that was implied). In fact, I don't think he *has* a
          > favourite. I think he's always ready to speak, write, sing, play, run,
          > swim and dance through each of us. We are like flowers in his
          > heart-garden. On a particular day one flower blooms, tomorrow
          > another... I suppose I'm thinking of the group Blue Flower and their
          > beautiful CD "Blossoming."
          >
          > Sumangali, you like the nib of a certain pen. But suppose you were
          > thinking of one word, and found that the pen wrote a different word?
          > Or suppose out of a sentence or paragraph, the pen captured some words
          > but not others? Suppose you were writing in proper English, but the
          > pen was turning everything into Cockney rhyming slang? (Though I
          > suppose some function reports could do with a bit more chitty-chitty
          > bang-bang.)
          >
          > However fine the nib, you would probably discard that pen in favour of
          > a better writing instrument.
          >
          > I think we are none of us perfect instruments. I am sometimes not fit
          > for service, so I'm very grateful for times when I've been able to
          > faithfully take dictation. If I can do it, anyone can! It just takes
          > love, quietude, and a practiced hand at getting words on paper. These
          > are qualities that anyone can cultivate, and which many people already
          > possess.
          >
          > I don't think Guru is partial or has favourites. That might lead to
          > jealousy. Such a prolific author as our Master needs many pens in
          > working order; and any time someone knocks at his heart's door with
          > devotion, he is only too happy to speak with them, bless them, and
          > illumine them. This he does in a unique way for each person according
          > to what capacities they have developed, and according to their crying
          > need.
          >
          > Recently, there was a thread discussing poet-songwriter Leonard Cohen.
          > I suppose his best known song is "Suzanne," a snippet of which goes:
          >
          > And Jesus was a sailor
          > When he walked upon the water
          > And he spent a long time watching
          > From his lonely wooden tower
          > And when he knew for certain
          > Only drowning men could see him
          > He said "All men will be sailors then
          > Until the sea shall free them..."
          >
          > It is just poetry. But I like the line "Only drowning men could see
          > him." Just as you cannot know the height of others' vision, you cannot
          > know the depths of their despair. Will you envy a drowning man?
          >
          > Maybe Sumangali will know what I mean if I say that sometimes I find
          > it easy to write, but difficult to be the writer. Sometimes bringing
          > it outward and sharing it in a public forum can be "excruciating" (to
          > use her word). I try and learn from her bravery in continuing to "get
          > back on the horse." (See her message #22316.)
          >
          > I don't want to run myself down nor inflate my capacities. But I think
          > other poets would understand that the clarity of a poem may be
          > hard-won, and may rise to the surface from a life filled with
          > confusion - like mushrooms springing up from the manure. We can
          > appreciate a poem as a moment of perfect clarity, yet recognize that -
          > in my case - the poet has teeming imperfections and is not a person to
          > emulate.
          >
          > As Durga-Mata implied a few months ago, poets and visionaries are not
          > always the best role models around an ashram. There are people who
          > quietly do the right thing at each moment in their lives who make
          > better role models. They may not communicate grand visions, they may
          > not draw attention to themselves, but their daily service is what
          > makes Guru's Mission possible. Or to paraphrase a popular book title:
          > After poetry, the laundry!
          >
          > You can say that from a life filled with desperate useless activity, I
          > sometimes tire of my own foolishness and am ready to listen to a Voice
          > that is all perfection. That Voice is worth emulating, but not the
          > poet himself, not the messenger.
          >
          > How do you save someone's life? Give them a job to do. Make them feel
          > it is indispensible. Even if it is only a small job, a messenger's
          > job. Maybe that is Sri Chinmoy's way of saving my life. He has done it
          > for thousands of others - as Congressman Ackerman might say: the weak
          > and the strong, the rich and the poor.
          >
          > http://www.srichinmoy.org/sri-chinmoy-1931-2007/tribute-by-gary-ackerman
          >
          > To all these earthly identities, Sri Chinmoy is like an angel who
          > holds a bright key. William Blake writes:
          >
          > The Chimney Sweeper
          >
          > When my mother died I was very young,
          > And my father sold me while yet my tongue
          > Could scarcely cry 'weep! 'weep! 'weep! 'weep!
          > So your chimneys I sweep, and in soot I sleep.
          >
          > There's little Tom Dacre, who cried when his head,
          > That curled like a lamb's back, was shaved: so I said,
          > "Hush, Tom! never mind it, for when your head's bare,
          > You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair."
          >
          > And so he was quiet; and that very night,
          > As Tom was a-sleeping, he had such a sight, -
          > That thousands of sweepers, Dick, Joe, Ned, and Jack,
          > Were all of them locked up in coffins of black.
          >
          > And by came an angel who had a bright key,
          > And he opened the coffins and set them all free;
          > Then down a green plain leaping, laughing, they run,
          > And wash in a river, and shine in the sun.
          >
          > Then naked and white, all their bags left behind,
          > They rise upon clouds and sport in the wind;
          > And the angel told Tom, if he'd be a good boy,
          > He'd have God for his father, and never want joy.
          >
          > And so Tom awoke; and we rose in the dark,
          > And got with our bags and our brushes to work.
          > Though the morning was cold, Tom was happy and warm;
          > So if all do their duty they need not fear harm.
          >
          > from Songs of Innocence, by William Blake
          >
          > COMPARE:
          >
          > I Am An Idiot
          >
          > I know I am an idiot true.
          > In the growing clouds my hopeful feet,
          > Hands flung skywards for the blue stars.
          > My throes no sun, no moon, shall greet.
          >
          > I had a dream, a real dream:
          > God would bury Himself to live
          > In human ignorance hungry and black,
          > To human death His Soul He'd give.
          >
          > from My Flute, by Sri Chinmoy
          >
          > And also:
          >
          > Two Unborn Dreams
          >
          > I long for the blossoming
          > Of two unborn dreams.
          > I wish to fly
          > From life to death
          > To change the face and fate of earth
          > In the world of death.
          > I wish to fly
          > From earth-failure to Heaven-triumph
          > To change the sorrows and pangs of God
          > In the world of man.
          >
          > from The Golden Boat, Part 9, by Sri Chinmoy
          >
          > He also writes:
          >
          > Where is death?
          > Where is death?
          > Every day a new life.
          >
          > from the song "Kothai Moran" as perforfmed by Shindhu
          >
          > As each new day dawns, the field is wide open for anyone who wants to
          > receive and manifest the Master's light. If anything, my poems prove
          > that the Master does *not* play favourites, and that all may try and
          > (on certain days) succeed! As Nirmila said: "This Marathon-Talk with
          > our Master is also without an ending."
          >
          > Michael
          >
          >
          > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, purnakama2000
          > <no_reply@> wrote:
          > >
          > > I am all gratitude to your soulful expression.
          > >
          > > Purnakama
          >
        • dmchaudhurani
          What a surprise to find this kind and inspiring letter from you Michael. Before answering your letter I will tell you my latest funny life-story. As usual at
          Message 4 of 26 , Jun 23, 2008
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            What a surprise to find this kind and inspiring letter from you
            Michael. Before answering your letter I will tell you my latest funny
            life-story.

            As usual at this particular time for me my outer life is very crazy
            and often stressful and unaspiring - not peopled with disciples much,
            just battles of various kinds with outer world challenges. Well I had
            a unique teaching experience on Friday night. Still battling with the
            end of term deadlines I was in trouble about a week ago with year 8
            reports because they are on a peculiar programme which has to load
            onto a special system with columns of numbers as well as a written
            comment. Because I only work part-time I finished the last year 8
            class reports at home and emailed the folder to school to meet the
            deadline. For some unknown reason, after emailing the details wouldn't
            load on the school system so that class missed their RE reports being
            included. As you can imagine it caused a lot of trouble and hours of
            wasted time. I did not want that to happen again so I determined to
            complete the year 9 reports at school.

            Last Friday I was finishing these. The absolute deadline was Monday -
            so I had to do them before I left. I would have done it in time but I
            was also looking for jobs and completing an application forms after
            school and I ran out of time. My classroom is in a mobile hut - (the
            school is having a lot of rebuilding done so we have a 'hut city.')
            Anyway I have my own key to the hut so I just went there and continued
            working on the reports on my laptop - having locked myself in. It was
            getting late - but I was nearly finished when there was a bang on the
            window. The caretaker had called the police on me!!!

            I left a quick note for my colleague as we share the class whose notes
            I was finishing. We both only see them once a fortnight - so I don't
            know them very well. I had done the report comments based on the work
            in their books but as my colleague has taught at the school for years
            she knows them better than I do. Also they are inclined to misbehave
            more with her so I wanted her to double check these reports even if I
            had finished them, to reflect the way they work for her. So I left a
            note asking her to complete the last detail on Monday (today) before
            giving them in to the office. (I left them on my memory stick.)

            The detail that needed completing was one column where you choose
            either 'excellent, good, satisfactory or concern.' It is a big class
            with a number of difficult students, but I had put excellent in the
            top column and 'filled down' so all the students had 'excellent.' Had
            I been able to complete the exercise I would have checked my register
            records and altered them where necessary to the other categories - but
            I still would have asked my colleague to check them and amend them as
            neccecary. As it was I just had to write a quick note, drop everything
            and go.

            What I didn't know was that my colleague was out of school today, on a
            course. So no-one could do any alteration and the reports went through
            like that. There will be some big surprised smiles on the faces of
            some of my students from that class when they get their RE reports and
            find their overall 'grade' is excellent. My colleague laughed a lot
            when I told her, saying, 'Well does it matter? We're both leaving at
            the end of term.'

            Now to respond to your message. I do agree that we should try to claim
            each other's achievements as our own. I love your analogy - 'We are
            all stars in Guru's heart-sky. Each of us twinkles in our own way.
            When we shine together, we illumine the night sky.'

            I also know that 'there is no reason for anyone to feel jealous. After
            all, as Abhinabha suggested, if Sri Chinmoy is the ventriloquist, then
            I am just the wooden dummy!

            There is no reason for anyone to feel jealous or to feel any undivine
            emotion. I know that in theory. But we are not yet perfect and however
            we may 'know' that there is no reason to feel jealous or any other
            undivine emotion, we have to deal with the reality of our experience.

            When I read in your poem

            > "Son, since I left the physical,
            > So many people have seen me vividly
            > In the inner world.
            > It is not their mental hallucination,
            > It is their true spiritual experience
            > Founded on aspiration."
            >
            it was just too much for me. I was missing Guru so intensely. To know
            that he was appearing to others in such a vivid way - but not able
            myself to even feel him close just added to my pain and grief. It
            suggested that my own lack of aspiration was to blame for my failure
            to see my Guru. Jealousy was part of the problem but also this sense
            of being to blame.

            Again in the next part - "Well, if you are spiritually dead then I
            will be a dead Guru to you. But if you aspire, I will be your living
            Guru, I will speak constantly inside your Aspiration-Heart." -
            may be all 'love and compassion' but it suggests that if we don't feel
            Guru's closeness and hear him constantly speaking in our heart of
            aspiration - it is our fault. It suggests that we are spiritually
            dead. And that was also a cause of increased pain when I was really
            crying and crying inwardly and outwardly for him.

            Thankyou for the quotation on imagination.
            'Imagination is not mental hallucination. Never! Imagination is a
            world of its own. If I have a dear one in my life, whether it is my
            mother or my father or somebody else, I want to see that person. True,
            I may not be able to see him right now with my physical eyes, but with
            my inner eye, with my inner feeling, I can easily imagine that person
            to be in front of me. Then,let me make that person very real, very
            concrete in my life...
            "So in your case I am telling you, even if you are physically away
            from me, if I am in one country and you are in another, you can easily
            feel that I am standing right in front of you.' (unofficial)
            http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/books/1276/2/6/
            I agree so much and do try to use imagination. But the dream was real,
            that was not imagination. Just that because it was such a subtle
            experience which Guru was showing me rather than a dramatic dream that
            I remembered spontaneously...

            The dream experience was important to me because it showed me clearly
            that while my mind and outer life may be preoccupied with the
            struggle to survive in my current situation with a crazy job full of
            stress and impossible demands, far from my home with loads of
            travelling, car problems, a job that's only part time so there are
            money problems too - and people who are close to my heart who are
            struggling with many undivine and difficult outer problems and think
            that because I meditate and have a living spiritual life I can help
            them out - so that they also take my energy..... while so much of my
            life is difficult and uninspiring.... that is not the whole picture.
            In the inner worlds - even if I'm too deaf and blind to be aware of it
            - my soul is at peace with my Guru, at His Feet and utterly embraced
            by His Love.

            As this is true for me I guess it is also true for all the rest of us.
            That was why I wanted to share this dream-experience. But I was
            concerned that some of my brothers and sisters might think it was
            arrogant or inappropriate. I'm glad you do not hold that view.

            I agree fully that 'you cannot easily choose what you will think at
            time of death! It will be what you thought about your whole life.
            Therefore, when you are fortunate to meet a great Master like Sri
            Chinmoy, it is being said to fill your whole life with thoughts of
            him.' This is the same for dreams. We can not choose what we say to
            Guru in our dreams. That is why I am so thrilled by the two dreams I
            have written about because they show that when I am not in my
            conscious mind, my soul is all love and devotion. I was so happy that
            I had said these particular things to Guru, 'Guru, I want to realise
            You' and 'Let me never loose You.' .... so simple and so pure. My mind
            could never have been so eloquent.

            Regarding the flowers I do not know all the names. But I know many
            because my parents knew many and were always thrilled to discover new
            flowers and learn their names. Flowers - well the wild ones I grew up
            with - are special friends who come to visit and give me joy as the
            year unfolds.

            Well, it's now nearly 3am. I'm just home from another weekend in
            Birmingham, doing my best to support my Guru-loving and aspiring
            friends there. I have just an hour before I need to get up to drive to
            work in Norfolk so I had better get to bed. Did I say my outer life is
            crazy at the moment?

            Thankyou, Michael for sharing your inspiration, oneness and
            encouragement with us all. Thankyou for being such a special
            ventriloquist-poet so that through your work we really can hear Guru
            talking to us still.

            Durga-Mata
          • dmchaudhurani
            Two updates. One is that I slept till nearly 6.00 which was good for getting a few hours sleep but meant a very rushed journey, not keeping to the 55mph limit
            Message 5 of 26 , Jun 24, 2008
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              Two updates.
              One is that I slept till nearly 6.00 which was good for getting a
              few hours sleep but meant a very rushed journey, not keeping to the
              55mph limit Guru advises - well I often go above that but not
              usually as fast as I had to go today - It's too heavy on petrol as
              well as more tiring. anyway by Guru's Grace I covered about 140
              miles and arrived 2 minutes before my first lesson!

              The second update is that our colleague in Administration, who
              processes the reports, did let us go into the year 9 file and ammend
              them. It just would not have been right for everyone in that classto
              get 'excellent.'

              About the flowers. I will try to borrow a camera as there's a field
              I pass which is 'poppy glory' at the moment. I was thinking I would
              like to choose something inspiring from Guru's Writings to include
              here so this is not just a mundane and uninspiring post - the beauty
              of the poppies is so truly inspiring I wanted to find a poem related
              to them. I put 'flower' and 'beauty' in the poetry search and there
              were over 90 hits. These are all just from the first 15! Which do
              you like best, I wonder. I simply couldn't select just one.

              All my love

              Durga-Mata

              this is my favourite.
              (unofficial)
              9650
              We can easily find God
              In the beauty-smile
              Of the morning flowers.

              but I love these too...
              (unofficial)
              19473
              May my God-oneness-heart-tree
              Every day produce infinite
              Flowers of beauty,
              Flowers of fragrance
              And
              Flowers of selflessness.

              Excerpt from Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 20 by Sri
              Chinmoy.

              (unofficial)
              Question: When we offer people flowers, what should we feel we are
              giving them?
              Sri Chinmoy: Feel that you are offering them your heart's pure
              fragrance, and you are hoping that their heart will receive it.
              Also, you will pray to God at that time to give extra purity and
              extra beauty, divine beauty, to your heart and to the heart of the
              person to whom you are offering the flowers.
              Excerpt from Sri Chinmoy Answers, Part 32 by Sri Chinmoy.

              (unofficial)
              2838
              I see God's Purity-Face
              Inside flowers.
              I see God's Beauty-Face
              Inside children.

              Excerpt from Twenty-Seven Thousand Aspiration-Plants, Part 29 by Sri
              Chinmoy.

              (unofficial)

              18755
              We all are flowers
              Of exquisite beauty
              And fragrance
              In the Heart-Garden
              Of our Lord Supreme.

              Excerpt from Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 19 by Sri
              Chinmoy.
            • purnakama2000
              Hello Durga Mata, I feel report card oneness with you. It was so much easier when we could do them with pen and paper. We have had endless problems with our
              Message 6 of 26 , Jun 24, 2008
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                Hello Durga Mata,

                I feel report card oneness with you. It was so much easier when we
                could do them with pen and paper. We have had endless problems with
                our computer reports!

                And I can also to relate to your spending most of your time in the
                non disciple world. Being teachers that is our life. I've struggled
                with this idea and have often felt less of a disciple sometimes
                because I am not in an enterprise or somewhere where Guru's presence
                is always there. But I think I've come to realise that God needs us
                everywhere. As Sumangali pointed out, we've all been given different
                capacities and as long as we're doing what God needs us to do.
                wherever that is, it's all good


                And finally thank you for sharing this poem with us.

                "We Can easily find God
                in the beauty smile
                of the morning flowers."

                Every morning when I leave for work I water my small garden and say
                good morning to all of my flowers. My neighbors must get a good
                chuckle! It makes me so happy to see them. I feel like they're
                smiling as they wake up to greet the day; especially my blue flax as
                it slowly opens it petals in the morning sun after having closed up,
                resting for the night.

                Thanks for sharing all of your fun stories and life's little
                anecdotes.

                Purnakama
              • dmchaudhurani
                Hello Purnakama, It s Wednesday 25th June, just after 4pm. Thankyou for your kind message. First the great news. I just finished the last of my reports! As
                Message 7 of 26 , Jun 25, 2008
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                  Hello Purnakama,

                  It's Wednesday 25th June, just after 4pm.
                  Thankyou for your kind message. First the great news. I just finished
                  the last of my reports! As soon as I had passed them to the office I
                  thought, 'let me just treat myself by spending a few minutes looking
                  at Inspiration Site. I will read some posts and reply to at least
                  three - just for oneness and not about myself for once.' But what
                  should I find? This sweet message to me from you! So I am indeed
                  answering someone's message - but it is also about me again! I will
                  answer a few of the points you mention.

                  ....I can also to relate to your spending most of your time in the
                  non-disciple world. Being teachers that is our life. I've struggled
                  with this idea and have often felt less of a disciple sometimes
                  because I am not in an enterprise or somewhere where Guru's presence
                  is always there. But I think I've come to realise that God needs us
                  everywhere....

                  Yes, I do agree with you here. It can be lonely at times but I also
                  believe we have a particular role because Guru's Light has to touch
                  everyone. I sometimes wonder if one reason why I can't get a permanent
                  job may be because Guru wants me to work in a lot of schools and in
                  that way touch more kids with his Light than I would if I just worked
                  in one school for years. I know the outer reasons - of age, school
                  budgets (more experienced teachers like me are more expensive) and
                  weak CV due to short-term or part-time work - to say nothing of the
                  new data-handling skills that schools have started to demand - are
                  important factors - but I feel if it were God's Will I would surely
                  have found a permanent job by now.

                  Once I was really upset at not succeeding in an interview. I had
                  worked in the school for a term and they knew I was good but still I
                  did not get selected. In the evening, at my shrine, I was meditating
                  and felt a strong force from my heart crying to Guru and asking what
                  was wrong with me. Why didn't I get the job? It was one of those rare
                  times when you 'hear' the answer to a prayer. Guru said that 'the
                  politics of the position would have destroyed your aspiration.' I'm
                  not sure of the exact words but that was the gist of the message.

                  I could see it was very true as I was working that term as Head of
                  Department in a big school but one other teacher in my department was
                  an atheist and refused to follow my Schemes of Work or co-operate with
                  me. I'd taken the problem to the Head early on - but he just said that
                  teacher had worked there for a long time and got good results so I
                  should just let him carry on in his own way. It would have been
                  difficult to create a harmonious department there with the other
                  teacher's hostility and no support from the Head. I know a lot of
                  teachers who have real problems with the 'Management' and internal
                  'politics' so I guess my situation is a blessing in some ways.

                  ....As Sumangali pointed out, we've all been given different
                  capacities and as long as we're doing what God needs us to do,
                  wherever that is, it's all good...

                  I agree so much with this. There are many things I am good at but
                  many, many things I am not good at. I am quite dyslexic and maths is
                  also not my strong point. In teaching my strengths are in my ability
                  to communicate difficult and abstract ideas, my endless energy and
                  enthusiasm regarding my beloved subject, my empathy and understanding
                  of young people so any misbehaviour doesn't stress me out and I can
                  connect with them and hopefully inspire them to co-operate, a high
                  degree of patience, humour and relentlessness in dealing with their
                  misbehaviour if they still don't co-operate... but maths - no.

                  But that is not the end of the story. I have found a way around this
                  weakness. My son once said he liked maths best because it is so safe.
                  You just learn a rule, apply it and get the right answer. In other
                  subjects you have to take a risk and expose something of yourself -
                  but in Maths there is no risk. So I tell my class this story and we
                  look for the rules together. Then we find who in the class can
                  understand and work the rule we need for the exercise they are working
                  on - and they become 'Peer Tutors' who can help others (like me) who
                  are still struggling.

                  In fact I found that my mathematical difficulty comes not from a
                  failure to understand the rules but because I'm dyslexic with numbers
                  just as much as spellings. I double and reverse numbers and letters in
                  a completely random way. What saved me in writing and becoming a
                  teacher was computer word-processing and spell checks but in maths
                  there is nothing to help. However hard you work at it you just get the
                  wrong answer.

                  ....And finally thank you for sharing this poem with us....
                  >
                  > "We Can easily find God
                  > in the beauty smile
                  > of the morning flowers."

                  Yes isn't it special!

                  .....Every morning when I leave for work I water my small garden and
                  say good morning to all of my flowers. My neighbours must get a good
                  chuckle! It makes me so happy to see them. I feel like they're smiling
                  as they wake up to greet the day; especially my blue flax as it slowly
                  opens it petals in the morning sun after having closed up, resting for
                  the night....

                  I love your description of your garden-experience. I would love a
                  quiet regular peaceful routine like this each morning.
                  Your description of flax reminds me of the Blue Lotus. I had no idea
                  that there were such things as blue lotus' until I was in The Garland
                  of Divinity's Love one August, years and years ago. Kanan came back
                  from the market with one. It was amazing, love at first sight. I
                  bought it immediately and gave it to Guru for his birthday.

                  A few years later, when I had designed my Educational Games cards and
                  was inspired to try to make them into a real enterprise - I was not
                  even trying to think of a name for this project. Suddenly the words,
                  'Blue Lotus' came into my mind with a particular strength and
                  certainty. So my project became 'Blue Lotus Enterprises.' I went on
                  the Web to see if anyone else had this name for their business - and
                  was happy to find it was free for me to use - but I also found out a
                  lot about the blue lotus flower. It is strongly associated with
                  spirituality and in ancient Egypt it was a sacred plant which
                  symbolised life after death because the flowers close at night and
                  sink down under the water. Then in the morning slowly the closed
                  flower buds rise up to open again above the surface of the water in
                  the sun.

                  When I came to New York the following April, on my birthday, and went
                  to The Garland of Divinity's Love, I found Kanan had some blue lotus
                  flowers again. This was only the second time I had ever seen them,
                  first on Guru's Birthday and then on mine. Kanan did not know I was
                  coming that day or that I had chosen that name for the enterprise...
                  but I took it as a sweet sign that the name was right. With Guru there
                  are no coincidences.

                  .........Thanks for sharing all of your fun stories and life's little
                  anecdotes.....

                  Thanks for your encouragement and oneness. I am feeling Guru suddenly
                  very close as I write. So instead of reading more and answering any
                  other lovely messages I'm going to go and meditate.

                  All my gratitude and love - to you and to all my divine family -

                  Durga-Mata
                • cott_doris
                  Dear Michael, Whenever I read your writings inwardly I see a brush beginning to paint. I follow it s directions with my eyes and it gives me joy you are using
                  Message 8 of 26 , Jun 27, 2008
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                    Dear Michael,

                    Whenever I read your writings inwardly I see a brush beginning to
                    paint. I follow it's directions with my eyes and it gives me joy you
                    are using colours I like. When I discover my favourite colour here
                    and there and there and here it gives me even more joy.

                    It is nice you feel complimented that I mention you on my German
                    blog. In the 'worst' case only a few people are reading it. I didn't
                    say much about your writings there. Who am I to do so? And I know you
                    do not expect this from anybody.

                    I am aware that translation is a challenging work, I am not an
                    overconvident person. All translations I make from Sri Chinmoy's
                    stories Great Indian Meals I send for proofreading to a sensitive
                    translater who lives in Austria. I don't know exactly why, but I am
                    not ready to send my posts meant for the Inspiration Group to someone
                    for corrections. Sarah offered me some help but I didn't hear from
                    her for a long time and I also don't want to steal some of her
                    precious time. I hope she is doing well. In a way it is more relaxing
                    to write in proper German. But by translating stories and poems I get
                    a lot more out of them. That is one reason why I translate them. I
                    hope there will come a time when one of my translations will begin
                    with the line, "There was once a disciple..."

                    I tried what you suggested and keep you completely out of the poems
                    and it is my sincere experience that my joy and gratitude (also to
                    you) increased immensely.

                    I too found it was very beautiful what Kaushalya said in her message
                    22823:

                    Dear Michael, we are humbled even to be reading such a soulful insight
                    into our spiritual life as it continues to unfold. "Now is the time to
                    stay with the Divine in you, which is always close to My Soul": These
                    words are especially dear to me. There is no use trying to run away
                    from the pain which sometimes feels like a deep, sharp wound. The pain
                    invites us to take the journey into the Divine , make the quantum
                    leap,
                    gradually or quickly, as is possible, to honestly explore what we can
                    each do in order to live divinely. Guru always said that we get joy
                    only by crossing hurdles - and this is a most demanding hurdle, which
                    Guru would probably say is the greatest opportunity. Inspiration and
                    encouragement from each other is so helpful, and your self-offering is
                    surely that in glowing colours. It is so good to hear your voice
                    again. Gratitude, Kaushalya

                    I hope I am not wrong there was some humour involved in your reply to
                    my comment. I personally wouldn't want to waste time by exploring
                    artworks of their originality but rather enjoy them.

                    While I read your poem "Sweetness-Smile and Thunder-Drum" I was
                    moved to tears by the lines:

                    "Father, while You were on earth You suffered greatly. Please do not
                    let me bind You with my orphan-tears. Fly away to the highest Heaven!
                    You have earned the rest."

                    This is so beautiful. I feel so much sympathy for disciples who spent
                    many, many years in the master's physical presence. Many of us who
                    live in other countries and have not seen our master as often as you
                    and other American disciples have seen him may never really and
                    deeply feel what it means to miss his physical presence, though I too
                    do miss his physical presence as everybody does.

                    I hope you did not have an elephant trumpeting in mind when you asked
                    me to share your writings gently though it is true that I might have
                    even played a trombone by linking to your short story. In a touch of
                    enthusiasm (what is not at all a bad thing :-)) I had forgotten that
                    you made a request not to publish it on other websites. My only
                    consolation is that I realised my mistake before I read your message.
                    At that time I had already deleted the link and now replaced it with
                    another one. I was consoled the moment a little child came running
                    towards me and happily showed me a little trumpeting angel. Of course
                    this is not what I am. I was just consoled. I have an old flute on
                    which I sometimes play Sri Chinmoy's songs by heart. Recently I
                    joined Utsava's "Classical Flute Club" (I am joking, the title is my
                    invention only). It is a joy to practice with her and some
                    other 'children.' It compels my sometimes roaming mind to become
                    silent and be more focused.

                    Perhaps the Roches would have joy as well as I have by singing one of
                    Guru's songs that goes:

                    "Silence please,
                    God is coming,
                    I hear His Voice.
                    Silence please,
                    God has come,
                    I see His Face.
                    Silence please,
                    God needs you,
                    You alone
                    Constantly."

                    -Sri Chinmoy
                    (unofficial)

                    Apropos trumpeting â€" I think you have trumpeted loud enough now that
                    you are an imperfect human being (as we all are). :-) It is true what
                    you said:

                    "We are all stars in Guru's heart-sky. Each of us twinkles in our own
                    way. When we shine together, we illumine the night sky."

                    In our centre there is only one older lady I share your writings with
                    but I do not share all of your works that I read. I do not share any
                    of your writings in our Centre. Some of our centre members are silent
                    readers here, accept for Pranam and Nirmala. A few days ago when I
                    was sitting in her kitchen where we were drinking tea and had some
                    biscuits I asked her whether she was interested in reading a new post
                    of you and she said very warmly, "Oh, yes, that would be kind of you
                    to make some copies." It is possible she shares them with her
                    daughter.

                    I vividly remember the day when I went to my very first Joyday in
                    1990. Wearing a sari for the first time I felt like Cinderella who
                    was allowed to dance at the ball when I walked up the stairs and
                    entered the hall where people were all dressed in whites and saris.

                    Cinderella loves beautiful garments but sometimes she also loves to
                    remember the time she spent with the Birds when she was doing hard
                    work (to understand better where Cinderalla's life ends and the
                    princess's life begins) and so she puts on her old and very simple
                    clothes though she could have made a better choice. Sometimes she may
                    put them on out of unawareness. Perhaps only the birds know how much
                    inner beauty there was envolved when she painted all those walls and
                    sang songs, God knows how many times she repeated them, like the
                    following one, of which she felt it was like a gift. It is a bhajan,
                    Sri Chinmoy composed on March 25, 1992 and which would be very easy
                    to translate:

                    "Khulbo ami hiyar duar
                    Dekhte pitar kripar jowar."

                    -Sri Chinmoy
                    (unofficial)

                    This song would make her feel like a princess dressed in a most
                    beautiful garment, the one she was wearing when she went with her
                    king in a white carriage. Perhaps now she wants to save her most
                    beautiful garment for the "Last Waltz."

                    What more could she do than grateful sing back to her Lord:

                    "My heart's king, my heart's king.
                    Your Victory bell I ring.
                    You I love, you I adore,
                    You are my boat, You are my shore."

                    -Sri Chinmoy
                    (unofficial)

                    Now there is so much "I" in my post. I am sorry for that. I may
                    conclude with two more sentences that begins with "I".

                    I love the poem and will have to read it more often to fully feel it.
                    I have had a question in regards to Sri Chinmoy's song:

                    "I shall leave My Dream-Boat
                    Here on earth on the last day."

                    - Sri Chinmoy
                    (unofficial)

                    It is being answered to my fulliest satisfaction and consolation.

                    THANK YOU,

                    Doris

                    P.S. You said in an earlier post that you are a hobby photographer. I
                    assume you have a gallery?

                    ~ ~ ~

                    --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, assistantmummer
                    <no_reply@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Dear Doris,
                    >
                    > I'm so glad that you have your own blog now, where you can expand
                    upon
                    > your thoughts and feelings, and also add photos and images that you
                    > like. I feel very complimented that you would mention me and even
                    > translate some of my writings into German. I know translation can be
                    > very challenging work, so if you ever find it difficult, maybe you
                    can
                    > check with other German speakers and see if they have suggestions.
                    >
                    > I never want to create any misundertanding with anyone - just add my
                    > light to the sum of light. I call my writings poems and stories and
                    I
                    > sign my name to them. I never insist that anyone has to subscribe to
                    > any particular theory of what they are. One can say that they are
                    > "inspired by Sri Chinmoy." Just how deeply they are inspired, each
                    > person can decide for himself.
                    >
                    > Sometimes I provide a bit of "provenance." In the art world,
                    > "provenance" means "Where did this come from? Tell us what you know.
                    > You say it is a Degas, but why should we believe you?" So I try to
                    > explain as best as I can, but it is not an exact science.
                    >
                    > If you share my writings with others, I hope you will not trumpet
                    them
                    > loudly, but rather offer them gently.
                    >
                    > I see you made one link to a short story I wrote in 2005. That was a
                    > private project not much related to Sri Chinmoy Centre. It might not
                    > be of much interest to disciples, so maybe it would be beter to
                    delete
                    > that link.
                    >
                    > Thank you,
                    >
                    > Michael
                    >
                    >
                    > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
                    > <no_reply@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Dear Michael,
                    > >
                    > > I was very inspired and encouraged by Tejvan's comment.
                    > >
                    > > On my German blog people can read now one of your essays, a story,
                    > > and poems, including the story fragment "The Reclusive Disciple"
                    and
                    > > the poem "Sweetness-Smile and Thunder-Drum."
                    > >
                    > > I began to translate both works of your's into German and would
                    like
                    > > to publish them with your kind permission on the German Sri
                    Chinmoy
                    > > website.
                    > >
                    > > Thank you for sharing more of the master's Light-offerings.
                    > >
                    > > http://doriscott.blogspot.com/
                    > >
                    > > Doris
                    > >
                    >
                  • purnakama2000
                    Hello again Durga Mata, Now I will thank you for your kind reply to my post:) I just read your description of the lovely footpaths in your area. It sounds
                    Message 9 of 26 , Jun 29, 2008
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                      Hello again Durga Mata,

                      Now I will thank you for your kind reply to my post:)

                      I just read your description of the lovely footpaths in your area.
                      It sounds wonderful! And hearing stories of your mother is so
                      inspiring.

                      I want to give you some encouragement in the job hunt. I know how
                      frustrating it can be.

                      About 3 years ago my job as a jr high band teacher which I had
                      always loved became extemely difficult and the environment became
                      undivine to say the least due to an administration change.

                      I desperately tried to get a different job when the job postings
                      came out that year but to no avail. I was very depressed and
                      disheartened at having to go back there the next year, but back I
                      went for 2 more years and the situation became worse, and still I
                      could not seem to be successful at getting another job. I had
                      written a letter to Guru telling him about this situation so I knew
                      that whatever was happening was somehow all in the plan.

                      Then finally the third year something changed. All along I had been
                      applying for classroom jobs, to teach grade 5, or 6. I wanted out of
                      the rat race of having 200 children come through my room every day,
                      and wanted the peace and relative tranquility of having just 25
                      little souls to deal with on a daily basis, not 200.

                      Then one night as I was stressed over the new job postings coming
                      out, I had a dream. In the dream I was trying to get into a room in
                      a strange building but I couldn't find the right door. Suddenly one
                      of our secretaries from the school appeared in my dream and she
                      showed me a different door to go through, and it was glowing with
                      light. She said "you don't want that other door, you want this
                      one.This is where you should go."
                      I went to that door in the dream and indeed, it proved to be much
                      better than I imagined.

                      The next day at school when I was discussing and fretting over the
                      new postings,the secretary that was in my dream came to me and
                      said, "Purnakama, you're applying for the wrong jobs. You want these
                      classroom jobs, but there are these terriffic elementary music jobs
                      and they're in really good schools. You could work with younger
                      children and be creative and do the kind of music that you love.
                      They're perfect for you."
                      After the dream the previous night I couldn't believe my ears.
                      Maybe I was applying for the wrong jobs. Maybe hiding in the safety
                      of a small classroom was not what was meant for me.

                      So I applied for 3 jobs in the elementary music realm and I got all
                      3 jobs. It was a miracle! I got to choose, or rather God chose for
                      me and I ended up in the perfect position for me. I'm in a fantastic
                      school without a previous music program so I have free reign to
                      create what I want without any preconcieved notions from a previous
                      teacher.
                      And I still have about 200 children coming to my classroom every
                      day, but now I love it!

                      I guess my point is, don't give up. I realise now that I had to wait
                      out that "hell" in my other school to find the exact right position
                      for me.

                      The exact right position for you is out there, it just may not be
                      ready yet so you just have to hang tight until it is, and it may not
                      take the form that you think so, be open to anything.

                      I wish you luck in your search, but in the meantime, enjoy a restful
                      holiday:)

                      Purnakama
                    • dmchaudhurani
                      Again thankyou for your post,Purnakama. My difficulty is not that I m in a job I don t like - but that for the past 10 years or more I ve only had part-time,
                      Message 10 of 26 , Jun 30, 2008
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                        Again thankyou for your post,Purnakama.
                        My difficulty is not that I'm in a job I don't like - but that for the
                        past 10 years or more I've only had part-time, short-temporary or
                        supply work, none of which pays enough to live on, never mind get to
                        New York without going into deeper debt.

                        The job I'm in now ends in three weeks and I don't even know where
                        I'll stay next week as the colleague who I have been renting a room
                        from works at a College with earlier holidays. She's going away and I
                        simply have no money to pay for a hotel or hostel. I am tired of the
                        insecurity, of traveling long distances to work and having no place of
                        my own to stay. I'm tired of having no time at home to make it a home
                        and tired of having money worries.

                        I would so much like a regular job which I can get to from home. Most
                        people have that kind of ordered existence. But it seems that is not
                        what the Supreme wants for me. It has a positive aspect - I try to
                        identify with the Ultra Runners and just take each day as it comes -
                        and go on, go on, what ever the 'weather' or 'injuries' but I really
                        am tired of this kind of chaotic lifestyle. That's why I was drawn so
                        strongly by your description of talking to your flax and other flowers
                        each morning.

                        This weekend I had a residential course which was related to
                        church-based spirituality and Christian education. It was held in a
                        big country house set in beautiful landscape, very peaceful and
                        inspiring. The people on the course were lovely and I enjoyed it a lot
                        - but under the surface I was struggling with my worries and
                        anxieties. I was saying to one friend that the comfortable faith
                        statement, 'The Lord will Provide' does not always work out. In the
                        Biblical story Abraham was commanded to sacrifice his son - but then
                        his hand was stayed and there was a ram caught in the bushes. The Lord
                        'provided' an alternative sacrifice. But surrender is not surrender if
                        you assume God will come to your rescue, just in the nick of time. If
                        you think like that then, on the occasions when things don't work out
                        and your outer world is full of cracks, it would shake your faith. But
                        outer difficulties do not mean God doesn't care for you - or that you
                        are a 'bad person.' Indeed, From what I've read of Guru's writings on
                        surrender, we are always tested on what we find most difficult, so it
                        could just be that you are in an 'advanced class.'

                        Anyway, It's been a long and exhausting year. My part-time wages
                        barely cover the costs of living and I'm so short of money that I have
                        to borrow for petrol at times, just to get to work. But I have
                        survived, stayed the course, honoured my contract and stayed faithful
                        to my colleagues and my students so I feel a certain sense of peace
                        and completion. However, knowing that in three weeks my job ends and
                        there is nothing on the horizon for September, It is hard not to feel
                        a few worries and anxieties.

                        On my way back to London after the course my mobile phone rang. It was
                        an organisation I'd never heard of called 'Academic Solutions.' It is
                        a new Supply Agency set up by someone who worked at the Agency I
                        worked for in Birmingham for several years. She remembered me and had
                        tracked me down because a school in her area needs a Religious
                        Education Specialist to run the department for two terms, starting in
                        September. She knew I'd be good for it, was I free?

                        I am not enthusiastic. It's in Worcester which is near Wales, the
                        opposite side of England from my mother's house. If I do get this post
                        I will miss the golden days and weekends with my mum and it will still
                        involve long drives every weekend. But it does seem that God has
                        something lined up for me and does not want to see me idle.

                        I stopped on the way home to put an advert in a shop window for
                        something I want to sell. When I came back to the car the bakery I'd
                        parked outside was just closing. 'Could you do with some bread?' the
                        lady asked from the doorway. 'They'll just be thrown out if you can't
                        take any. It's such a waste.' So I came home with a large bag of
                        loaves and buns. The freezer is now full and I gave some to a
                        neighbour. It seems God does not want to see me go hungry either! I
                        have said it before - there are no coincidences in my life.

                        all my love Durga-Mata
                      • purnakama2000
                        Hi Durga Mata, May I just say that Guru will be with you on your job search and I wish you the best of luck! I m looking forward to sharing stories with you in
                        Message 11 of 26 , Jul 7 5:27 AM
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                          Hi Durga Mata,



                          May I just say that Guru will be with you on your job search and I
                          wish you the best of luck!

                          I'm looking forward to sharing stories with you in August!

                          Purnakama
                        • assistantmummer
                          Dear Sumangali, I didn t find your reply belligerent (#22865), and can t identify anything I disagree with. After all, in art, spirituality and life, there are
                          Message 12 of 26 , Jul 17 7:00 PM
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                            Dear Sumangali,

                            I didn't find your reply belligerent (#22865), and can't identify
                            anything I disagree with. After all, in art, spirituality and life,
                            there are often paradoxes. Perhaps we're bringing out different
                            aspects of the same truth. I thought your comments kindly and
                            insightful; I did not feel pressured.

                            An interesting issue you've indirectly raised is the difference
                            between equality as assembly-line sameness, vs. equality of
                            opportunity. No two snowflakes are the same; how much less so human
                            souls!

                            There's a wonderful book by Ursula K. LeGuinn called The Lathe of
                            Heaven. It's based partly on Taoism. There's a character who has the
                            ability to change reality with his dreams. He comes under the sway of
                            an ambitious psychiatrist who wants to use and control this ability to
                            change the world for the better; but it never works out right...

                            At one point, the psychiatrist tells him to solve the race problem,
                            which the patient does by dreaming a world in which everyone has the
                            same ashen-gray complexion - in other words, a world full of dull
                            assembly-line equality!

                            To take your side of the non-argument,* suppose I were to say: "If I
                            can sign my name this way, anyone can!" or "If my fingerprints can
                            look this way, anyone's can!" That plainly wouldn't be true, since
                            handwriting and fingerprints are unique to each person.

                            When people write dialog poems (I am not the only one to do so), they
                            are interactiing with Guru's consciousness. There is an element of
                            uniqueness.

                            But while the results may not always be equal (meaning sameness), each
                            person has an equal opportunity to interact with Guru's consciousness.
                            That's what I meant by him not playing favourites.

                            It is also like a father with his children. The father loves them all,
                            and plays different games with them according to the capacities they
                            have developed. With one child he plays hide and seek, with another
                            football, and another chess. With another he plays musical duets.
                            Always there is the implicit feeling of love, and the implicit promise
                            that new and better games await as we learn to do more things.

                            In the physical world, we have lost our father. It is an unbearably
                            sad event. But in the midst of our orphan tears, we find that he is
                            inviting us out to an infinite cricket pitch and coaching us in new
                            skills that we can use to come ever closer to him. He is running
                            freely again as he used to, and we can barely keep up with him even
                            though he slackens the pace. He is leading us through an orchard of
                            sweet fruits that goes on forever - where it is always summer - and
                            teaching us to harvest happiness (to borrow a phrase from Sumangali).

                            You mention humility... I wonder if it is not some strange admixture
                            of humility and egomania which allows me to write and manifest these
                            poems. Certainly I do need to be very quiet and a good listener during
                            the actual writing. But if I were very humble, perhaps I would stick
                            them in a drawer somewhere and never share them. There is an element
                            of egomania in posting them on the Internet.

                            > The Game is more fun when the ball is caught as well
                            > as pitched, but I will content myself with pitching
                            > for now.
                            >
                            > (Go long if you go at all.)

                            You've got me pegged as a wide receiver, but I'm really more of a
                            punter. Anyway, I shall don the equipment and try not to step in any
                            cowpats, cowfish, cowgirls, or other bovine entities. (Is it true what
                            they say, that cowgirls have short memories? And does their own
                            cuteness keep them out of danger?)

                            http://www.sumangali.org/cowfish-out-of-water/

                            I suppose to avoid misunderstandings, we should stick to sporting
                            metaphors from games that neither Yanks nor Britons actually play...
                            How about curling, which I understand is popular in Newfoundland? It
                            apparently involves two codgers wearing kilts frantically sweeping the
                            ice in an effort to influence the trajectory of a metal discus.

                            Barring that, I challenge you to Australian rules dingo baby hunting
                            at sixteen paces!

                            Michael

                            *"Oh, you were looking for an argument? Sorry, that's down the hall.
                            This is Abuse."


                            --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sumangali_m
                            <no_reply@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Dear Michael
                            >
                            > Yes I do know what you mean when you say it may be easy to write but
                            > difficult to be a writer. It may be yet more difficult to be a writer
                            > with a lot of capacity. I wager it is not only your capacity but your
                            > humility which allows you to write for God. Either way, it is a very
                            > rare combination. If you cannot accept my praise, do at least accept
                            > my gratitude for sharing your gifts with us.
                            >
                            > My compliments were meant sincerely, but of course carried the
                            > unspoken small print which accompanies everything we do in life: all
                            > is accomplished by God's Grace, and not by our capacity alone. If my
                            > words brought accidental pressure with them, then you are at liberty
                            > to overlook them, but I would rather not take them back.
                            >
                            > With utmost respect, I disagree with some parts of your message.
                            >
                            > I do not agree that if you can do it "anyone can". We are each a
                            > portion of God, thus at the root we are not just equal, but one. I do
                            > not therefore see the Master literally as having favourites, I know he
                            > is far above that. He gives what is needed, (not what is deserved or
                            > what takes his fancy), but that is not equal at every time and in
                            > every case.
                            >
                            > If God has given one person capacity in one field, and that person
                            > also has the willingness and humility to offer it for His sole Use,
                            > then will He not use that instrument with more joy, and more frequency
                            > than others? Of course God can do as He pleases, but the Cosmic Game
                            > follows universal rules and practicalities, or it would be no game
                            at all.
                            >
                            > Granted, nothing is impossible for anyone. God can do as He pleases,
                            > but He does not find joy in making us all alike, or the Cosmic Play
                            > would star only kings. Right now I tell you I could not run even 3
                            > miles without a sizeable miracle, let alone 3100. Following your
                            > theory you may say I lack only willingness to try, but I say that is
                            > not so. It is only a very few whom God blesses with that level of
                            > running capacity. Of course I will always try my best, and aim to
                            > transcend myself in any small way I can, but can I expect to excel in
                            > sports when I was built a poet? It is like trying to write with a
                            > football.
                            >
                            > You are right in that it is not about you, or about emulating you, or
                            > about weighing up your imperfections against your creations, "it's
                            > about the boundless love that Sri Chinmoy has for all of us", and that
                            > is worth celebrating in every achievement, in every field, in every
                            > unique individual. The Master lives on in those who love him. Now he
                            > is gone outwardly I am drawn most to those who remember him clearest
                            > and feel him closest. That does not mean I would make gurus of them.
                            >
                            > I still maintain that what you have felt and written is remarkable,
                            > and I am not short of people to celebrate it with me. That does not
                            > mean that it is the only remarkable thing in the world, or that I wish
                            > I could have done it, or that I'd like to put you on some bleak and
                            > draughty pedestal, but neither does it mean that your gift is not
                            > special. God may love us all equally, but are we all pleasing Him
                            > equally? I dare say not.
                            >
                            > Pardon my belligerence. It is kindly meant, only I am in a spate of
                            > rebuffs (yours a particularly gracious and eloquent example). The Game
                            > is more fun when the ball is caught as well as pitched, but I will
                            > content myself with pitching for now.
                            >
                            > (Go long if you go at all.)
                            >
                            > Sumangali
                          • sumangali_m
                            Dear Michael, If I may be permitted to disagree with you on one more point (though you will probably prove once again that I am actually in rankled agreement),
                            Message 13 of 26 , Jul 18 9:46 AM
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                              Dear Michael,

                              If I may be permitted to disagree with you on one more point (though
                              you will probably prove once again that I am actually in rankled
                              agreement), I cannot believe egomania is your accomplice. If you were
                              claiming your own brilliance, that would be an option, but as you
                              are giving credit to another Source (and as that Source is so clearly
                              self-apparent), I can only see it as an offering.

                              I believe it is a good writer's duty to share his inspirations, just
                              as it is a gifted plumber's duty to fix drains and a talented
                              dentist's to pull teeth (God knows writing can be like pulling teeth
                              too). By share I mean offer (as you have done); not inflict (as
                              Vogons* do).

                              Although I myself have not even begun to write, I have already spent a
                              long time asking myself the rhetorical questions you pose. I believe
                              the process of publishing may carry with it the risk of self-doubt and
                              pride, but the act of not publishing (and I do consider any
                              abstinence an act), risks cowardice and false modesty. None are
                              terribly attractive, but the former seems the least devious opponent.

                              As for sporting dialogue, I was already out of my depth, but count me
                              in. Perhaps I will research further the language of Nettle Eating,
                              Worm Charming, Snail Racing, Cheese-Rolling and Bog-Snorkelling (all
                              official British sports). You can beat me to it here if you like, but
                              as usual we will probably find we are already on the same team:

                              http://www.sumangali.org/training-for-the-olimpicks/

                              Sumangali

                              * For anyone who is not familiar with fictional British aliens, Vogons
                              (first discovered by Douglas Adams) torture their captives by tying
                              them up and reading them dreadful poetry.
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