Blog | Madhu Bazaz Wangu
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Writings and Readings Blog

Madhu Bazaz Wangu

Readings from Tagore and Neruda

Tagore joyously sings about the inevitable but tender relationship of death with life. God finds himself by creating (46) The infant flower opens its bud and cries, "Dear World, please do not fade." (66) The night kisses the fading day whispering to his ear, "I am death, your mother. I am to give you fresh birth." (119) Death belongs to life as birth does. The walk is in the raising of the foot as in the laying of it down. (268) (Stray Birds by Rabindranath Tagore. Translated from Bengali to English by the author, The Macmillan Company, 1916) Neruda's imagination transports an ordinary bed from a resting place of the newborn, the sick, the dead, to a bed of lovers and dreamers. His vision depicts the surface of a sea -- "the intimidating bed" -- which...

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All Humans are Spiritual Beings

From the outset we want to make clear that when we say "religion" we neither mean major organized faiths nor minor beliefs, but a universal consciousness at the macro level and individual mindful awareness at the micro level that, when awakened, can heal individuals and enhance their well-being. An educated understanding of the world's religions and fine arts can gratify a personal quest for spiritual growth. We strongly believe in carefully reading the underlying core of each religion that is common to all faiths and connects all human beings into a large global community. Let's not cage "God." Let's experience wisdom and compassion with sincerity and dignity. We call this sort of attitude "modern spirituality." Our individual private lives seem...

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Common things and awareness

Depending upon the degree of our awareness common things can be beautiful. What sizzles in boiling oil is the world's pleasure: French fries go into the pan like the morning swan's snowy feathers and emerge half-golden from the olive's crackling amber. Garlic lends them its earthy aroma, its spice, its pollen that braved the reefs. Then, dressed anew in ivory suits, they fill our plates with repeated abundance, and the delicious simplicity of the soil. ("Ode to French Fries" in Odes to Common Things, a collection of poems by Pablo Neruda selected and illustrated by Ferris Cook. Translated by Ken Krabbenhoft. Bulfinch Press, AOL Time Warner Book Group. 2002) Nature inspires in us wise thoughts when observed with awareness: "How far are you from me, O Fruit?" "I am hidden in your heart, O Flower." (82) It is the little things that I leave behind for my loved ...

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