Crying Mountains, Selfish Humans

And so the mountains wept and the universe rejoiced. Springs sprung, water fell, and rivers meandered through valleys giving life to all earthly beings along its paths. Being the first point of contact with rainfall, mountains are containers of water and thus at times collect so much water that they end up crying for days at a time: pure, fresh and cold spring water.

Giants that stand shoulder to shoulder, mountains represent a facade which enamours a vulnerable creature. The wildest of mountains contain volcanoes of lava within them, while the most serene contain volumes of water. Make no mistake both are destructive and spectacular creations. Springs of  water and volcanic eruptions shape the face of each mountain, forming wrinkles and grooves over the years creating memorable timescales. Just like human character, mountains are as still as the elements that influence them on a daily basis.

I tried to hike it away, tried to climb onto those metal clouds that hang heavily around my neck like an albatross. This is an exercise in yoga in itself, without the bending of bones and placing one’s feet around one’s neck. In it’s easiest form it is laying the albatross on the floor and standing on it, to understand its intricacies.

An albatross and other generalizations of the issues we deal with everyday do not assist us in any manner. Each day is different, it occurs on a specific date, at a specific year and the way the wind blows on that day if at all is different to how it blew on all the other days. Likewise with challenges and problems we encounter on a daily basis; they are each unique and new in their own way.

The biggest mistake that experts in all fields make is to work on a presumption that each problem they face, they have witnessed before and therefore doesn’t warrant so much as a quick fix from their toolbox of solutions without. Meanwhile they are only solving the symptoms of a problem as opposed to assessing its root cause.

We are all experts in breathing, it is something we do on a daily basis to stay alive, it comes naturally. Imagine the disbelief when one realizes that they are failing to breathe normally, upon failing to breathe, they will try and breathe again how they know best to even though they are drowning in a body of water. Only after being resuscitated from a state of unconsciousness and gurgling a pool water contained in their chest and stomach through ones nose, eyes and stomach do we breathe normally again. This highlights how a normal thing such as breathing requires a different pattern of breathing depending on the environment in which you are in.

In directing the right energy towards the challenges we face we need to approach each obstacle, lesson or exercise in life as something new, an opportunity to learn and expand on who we are as individuals. We should be mindful of each and alot to each its time. Don’t give your problems names, lay them out and understand what each part of the problem means, appreciate that you will not know everything, be vulnerable and ask for help when you need it.

Lifelong learning has long been touted as a virtue, and it shall remain so. A master will never learn if they are not consistently challenging themselves or being challenged by their peers and protégés. There is nothing like a rustic master who fails to recognize the complexity and uniqueness of each challenge.

I speak these things in general; we face problems daily basis in our lives as individuals,  colleagues, families, as a community and as earthlings; it makes me cringe where we blanket problems with meaningless terms and meaningless ideologies which neglect to identify the root cause of our daily challenges and instead find blanket temporary fixes to our ills which only exacerbates thie underlying issues.

  • A crying mountain is good for the health of the world, imagine the wonders that a crying human can do, please cry, the world needs it, that shell of yours will do you more harm than good.

Closure


(Noun)
Definition;

“1. An act or process of closing something, especially an institution, thoroughfare, or frontier, or of being closed,

2. a procedure for ending a debate and taking a vote,

3. A sense of resolution or conclusion at the end of an artistic work,

3.1. A feeling that an emotional or traumatic experience has been resolved” the Oxford Dictionary

It could also be;

4. The edges of petticoat lace.

5. The fringe hiding receding hairlines or a finish on a lace wig,

6. The dog ears on the last page of a book etc.

And this is how Jojo’s journey to closure began on a cold winter Sunday morning, if he were to be given a name his name on this day would have been Audacious. On this particular morning he did the most godforsaken thing any child could do at home.

Jojo, being an early bird, woke up at 5am, sneaked out of the room he was sharing with his cousin Zime (the zulu word for Queen), removing the steel iron that kept the wooden door closed Ugogo was still asleep in the room adjacent to them and the kitchen next to it connecting into the sitting room, three internal frames in one house and only two of them had doors. He dragged his blanket with him, switched on the television set and muted the volume. Channel O was still on, his favourite cartoons oGundi no Mazwi, two little rats that spoke forever and always had something to say before uMalume came along in his bus to whisk the kids away to a story telling session, were not on yet. He would increase the volume a little when uGundi no Mazwi were playing so he could sing along with them.

His mother was sleeping in the same room as uGogo. She woke up while Jojo was still watching his cartoons to prepare porridge for the household. Jojo had started behaving like a little brat lately, so instead of being a good child and greeting his mom he pretended as if he had fallen asleep while watching TV. Mother greets him regardless, sleeping Jojo doesn’t respond. He only “wakes up” when the porridge is ready, at that time his cousin Zime was also up and wrapped in her blanket and watching TV on the two seater couch, Jojo always took the three seater.

Since it’s Sunday, mother immediately heated water in the largest Hart pot in the house to prepare bath water. As she was preparing the water she shouts and says, “Ngicela ningilandele indishi yokugeza emnyango zingane.” Jojo looks at Zime in the eye once and she gets the message, she gets up reluctantly to fetch the large plastic basin that was kept just next to the toilet built 200 meters from the main house adjacent to the neighbour’s premises, a small cubicle with a toilet seat and cistern on the one side and a shower head on the other (it only ever works in summer).

On Sunday, uGogo usually takes a bath first in her room, then uMa who takes the basin out to use the bathroom outside, after which Zime baths and Jojo is usually the last to bath in the kitchen. Just as he realized it would soon be his turn to wash Jojo slowly ran outside in his pyjamas and hid behind his uncle’s ikoyi cottage so he wouldn’t be seen. Familiar with his tricks, his mother immediately shouts to tell him the bath water is almost ready, as soon as she hears his footsteps running past Gogo’s bedroom. 

Jojo pretends as if he didn’t hear anything he hides behind his uncles ikoyi. In clear view of his neighbours who see right through the fence from the backyard but hidden from his mother. Of late, he has become a little nuisance, rebellious, it seems his balls are becoming greener with audacity. He now has the audacity to pull a frowning face at Mother, stomp his feet in protest, make exaggerated shrugs (shrugs so wild he even smashes his head against the couch if he’s sitting on it), and drags his feet with slouched shoulders as he attends to the assigned chore.

Young Jojo and his green balls, the size of marbles, recently got a backhand smack from mother recently after breaking a cup while making heavy metal music in the kitchen as he washed the dishes, throwing the spoons against the plates, plates against plates and beating at the pots splashing water all over the floor. He received a warning from the sitting room concerning this dishwashing concert he was having, so when the cup splashed onto the floor, as quick as lightning the backhand slap stung on half his face. A classic end to a rebellious show, red eyes and tears dripping from the rupture of flames flying right in the performer’s face.

He hid behind the ikoyi, hoping not to be seen by Mother. It was getting late, and everyone was almost ready for church except for the rock star who was hiding behind the ikoyi. “Jojo! Woz’ ogeza. Sizoba late esontweni.” Silence in the yard, where is this child Mother thinks to herself. “Jojo!” She goes to check at the bathroom, there is no sight of the young man. Just as she turns to leave he sees him right there hidden in plain side between his uncle’s ikoyi and the fence. “Woz’ ogeza, sihambe siye esontweni wena ngane, angazi ucasheleni lapho.”

Audacity;

1. A willingness to take bold risks 

2. Rude or disrespectful behaviour, impudence

So Jojo’s growing green balls have made him start a rock band in the kitchen, after recieving that smack one would think that he has learnt his lesson and be an obedient young man. Coming out of his hiding place with a sullen face he mumbles, “Angifuni ukuya esontweni mina.” 

Mother’s eardrums twitch, she shakes her head as if to make sure that whatever sound that went through her inner ear and registered to her brain was indeed correct. “Excuse me?! Am I not your mother?” 

Audacity stomps, shrugs, drags and slouches slightly as if conforming but he lifts his heads up in a second, “I am not going to church ma!” No words spoken but a hot clap from mother comes thereafter, stinging on Jojo’s face, Jojo cows back, visually shocked but instead of walking away his balls grew a shade greener. He whimpered once but instead of running away with a tail between his legs, he bore his teetth and leaped at his mother with a slap on her face then he ran out of the yard through the hole in the corner of the gate which mischievous stray dogs use to get into the yard. 

So, Jojo, didn’t go to church that day, he spent his morning with the very friends he was prohibited from playing with, he got a newspaper tattoo (a print of Wilson’s Champion Toffee), had bread dipped in tea for breakfast, played marbles in the dust and even peeked through a hole in an ikoyi to see two adults on top of each other as the lady was moaning and the kids playing outside could hear them. He thrived in audacity that morning, even when the family had come back from church, although he saw them he made sure not to return home due to the sins he had committed.

Hunger got the better of him, after a while he yearned to go home to eat and wash his favorite cartoons. He lurked around and hid behind a tree to check whether the coast was clear for him to enter the yard. Eventually, he found the perfect opportunity and ran into the kitchen, quickly opened the pot and used his dirty little fingers to pick a piece of meat out of the pot and three slices of bread. Like a thief, he ran out as quickly as he had come in to avoid being caught. 

Zime saw him as he slipped through the gate and shouted after him, letting him know that Mother has beeeeen looking for him, and how furious she was that he didn’t go to church.

He only returned home at night that day, he walked in crying looking like a homeless kid with dark ashy feet. Despite his cry of guilt he got a proper hiding, deserving of his foolish behavior. 

The following day he got a good scrubbing from Mother, with an orange orange sack and a pumice stone, right in front of the yard for all the world to see. Green balled Jojo was embarrassed at this feat as he felt he was too old to be bathing in public. That evening he was given the responsibility of ensuring that the gate was closed and locked in the evenings before everyone went to bed.

And so closure, only happens when you come back after wandering around the world looking for answers to face the truth, account for your behaviour and then locking the gates you had left unlocked after taking the due responsibility for your actions.

Snow Capped


It’s a Saturday, I am running low on sleeping juices but still have enough to rollover a little longer. Intutively, my body searches for the device that has become an extended part of my body, a second heart that connects me to the extended virtual world in which I live. The mind retaliates, not seeing the need to touch the damn device secure in the knowledge that I am pretty much alive and external confirmation of this fact is not required, particularly not from a cellular device. The heart smiles, I close my eyes and curl up in bed squeezing the last reserves of sleep that I have.

Ping! 05h00, this translates to 10% sleeping juices left. It’s an email from Alan Knott-Craig’s blog thebigalmanac.com (an influence of Benjamin Franklin’s “Poor Richard’s Almanack”) this mornings title reads “Be Generous When Times Are Tough”
“Being generous is one of the golden rules of life. Easy to do when times are good. A lot harder when you are in the vortex. (I need to find vortex in the dictionary it probably has to do with bad times.) That’s when it counts. 
Have the guts and character to help other people even when you are the one in need of a helping hand. You’ll find a helping hand come your way too.”
Short and sweet pearls of wisdom, as a follower of this blog I get showered with one of these every single morning at 5am without fail. 

And so, begin my mornings.
On this particular morning, I did not read Alan’s blog but I did wake up and naturally the big debate began. The first thing that came to mind was Gordon, whose father recently passed away and whose funeral service was being held at 08am today at his home in Winterton. It’s 334km away from Joburg, which is approximately a 3 hour 48 minute drive and an additional hour and 20 minutes would get me home in Pietermaritzburg. 
My heart was strongly inclined towards being there to support an old friend during this tough time they are going through, the body and mind were just baffled by the task at hand which was to drive for such a long way only to come back again and so improptly. It’s already past 5am, how do I expected to get to the funeral on time? The mind chimed in, remember that the time indicated by google maps is only indicative, you and I both know that we can easily cut that to three hours and even less. Thrilled, the body was out and in the shower within a second dragging everyone else along.
And so began a noble trip to KZN, I packed a bag, just in case wanderlust got the best of me and led me to the Drakensberg, in the bag I had a change of clothes, cosmetics and naturally I packed a book, “Go tell it on a mountain” James Baldwin, one of my study texts (yes I am), and my notebook and a pen in case of emergency. I also had a formal grey blazer to wear at the funeral and a winter coat if it gets cold.
The journey down was a cruise, a cruise against time on the inviting third national road towards Durban, the roads were clear except for a single incident where paramedics had covered a body on the side of the road, probably a pedestrian who was knocked over by a car on the highway. There was no sign of the culprit or the car that was responsible for this, it could perhaps be a hit and run. 

It was probably the 800th time this gentleman had crossed the road, sharp and well aware of the risks. He may have miscalculated the distance by a millisecond this time around. His body was covered in a foilly reflective body cover, his freshly cut chiskop was clearly visible to passers by. Blood was dripping from the back of his head just like the juices from the first bite off a ripe mango only that this time it was a windshield or tar that did the biting. This incident must have happened a moment ago.

 I said a a little prayer of mercy after I passed that scene. At the same time I wondered what the paramedics were discussing as they waited on the side of the road. How will they relay the message to those who are expecting him home in the afternoon, with a loaf of bread in his hand for the following day’s lunch or a bag of sugar as it ran out this morning when uBaba had his porridge for breakfast as he does every single day?

We live each day by faith. Faith being business as usual, waking up and going to work each morning, perform the day’s tasks to the best of our abilities and coming back home to rest over a meal with our families, share jokes and pray together. What’s better than sharing a cup of tea with the people that you love.
This afternoon, the special tea sets will be dusted clean and brought out to serve guests who have come to pay their respects to the family, The tray on which the tea will be served will be shaking as the serving hand knows that the family set is no longer complete.
                                  . . .

Permanence Is Illusive

“It’s not so easy writing about nothing.” the opening line to Patti Smith’s M Train, induces wanderlust. The book itself is not necessarily about nothing, but it’s about a series of stations and cafes along the A Train railway, connecting to airports, roads, writers, grave sites, snow, sunlight, rain, and only once with the illusive M Train with good old Cowpoke (Patti Smith’s creative counsel/inner voice). While devouring this book, in mimicry, listened to Shrimp Boots, had a cup of coffee every second minute (there could be no better coffee seller than this book) and found myself in want of the comfort of a corner table at Cafe Ino. In between all of this I scribbled profusely about nothing in my fresh journal.

What’s really not easy is painting about nothing, lining the brushes up, mounting the canvas and preparing the paint sure is easy, but, where does one even start with the act of painting itself? “Begin with the end in mind”, I first sketched my new “painting” on a pad, but all I could come up with was words, I wrote every word that came to mind, first in pencil and then in colored pencil for dramatic effect, the end product was nothing but wordy.

The canvas, brush and paint stared at me invitingly. I took a shallow breath, scurried to the kitchen to pour myself a glass of gin and tonic after which I gained the courage to accept the invitation. I applied a layer of acrylic gel on my canvas to make the surface easier to paint on and buy myself some time. While waiting for the gel to dry, I drove out to get a snack from the petrol station around the corner. I came back with a cylinder of Pringles and a packet of ice from the petrol station. All the while I thought about how I would turn the words I had drafted on the sketch pad into an image, words failed the amateur artist in me.

Our emotions are temporary; the heart skips a single beat, butterflies can keep us up through the night once in a while, we weep at the loss of a lover, and we get frustrated at the slow pace of the traffic we are a contributor to.

We recognize well the presence of emotions, so much that an actor/actress can use particular events in their “libraries” to trigger certain emotions under the act; anger, bitterness, calmness, disappointment, excitement, fear, grief, horror, indifference, joy, kinship (kind, kindred), loss (lack, “being lost”), morose (moody), naive(ty), order, patience, questioning (doubtful), rude, sober, trusting, unnerved (unmoved, unconvinced), virtuous, wanting (read desperate), Xtra (Beyond reasonably expected behavior, unnecessary), yielding (allowing, open minded, thoughtful of others) and zealous(ness).
Patti Smith delivers a memoir with such agility she takes the reader with her on a journey around the world, both the physical world as well as the land of Cowpoke. She is present in her writing, eliminating the need to narrate her past, at one point she’s 23 and at another she’s turning 66 and relates this to the legendary American highway Route 66. She refrains from using emotive language in her writing, this allows the reader to draw their own conclusion about her experiences and travels.

Perfection is presenting the world as it is and the M Train is an example of perfection due to its simplicity and ability to depict the how illusive permanence is. We live, we love, we lose, we live, we love thereafter and all that lies in between is a blur.

Yellow, Green, Blue… then much later in a dream; Red, Orange… Indigo, Violet.

The Spirit of She

It was a rainy Wednesday afternoon in the Free State when I took the picture.

There she stood in front of the house facing towards the white garden furniture and welcoming all guests of the lodge. Draped in nothing but the algae glowing down her body, she stood graciously on her toe tips on the water, hands stretched out like an eagle in flight, chin up to look heaven’s citizens in the eye and around her the hedge formed a golden halo, yes a floored halo, cushioned with a green exterior which reflects the full circle of life.

She invites the world and all it has to offer unto her… through this offering, her being took shape. Being a fixture of nature, a key part thereof, it being incomplete without her. Air, water, sunshine and earth oxidates her bronze and facilitates the formation of algae which flows on her just as the rain falls on her head and trickles down to her toes.

She belongs to it and it to her, the world. Being a gift unto each other they flourish and embraces their being; special indeed. She thrives with no need as she does not have any but that of living and giving life (herself) to the world, that is all.

Walls 

Nobody loves them but everybody builds them; around their neighbourhood, estates, their private properties and around themselves. Trump even wants to build on the Mexican American border.

The walls come in different sizes and for a moment we forget how we condemn good old Trump for his vile pronunciations. They keep us warm on cold winter nights, safe  from announced thieves and shade us from the wild summer sun. They are of no comfort to a cold heart, offer no safety for a worried soul and cannot shield us from our own emotions.

Les Brown referred to the graveyard as the richest place on earth where you find hopes and dreams never fulfilled, never written, never sung, never shared and never discovered. 

Walls are graveyards built from the ground up; they are facades, fronts, suits, ties, power dresses and high heels.These are made from the 9am to 5pm, the bills, the bonds, the paycheck… you name it. These walls are sometimes higher than six feet. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust as the soul sinks and squirms in scorn at the body that never allowed it to fulfill its purpose. 

Will we one day look at the walls around us and say, “I called this place home but the only home I ever had was my body  but I chose to build walls around me and call that my home instead of exploring the world in which I belong.” 

The world will look at the majestic walls we have built and praise their modern designs and finishes, the glorious statues we placed on top of them and even the enchanting fountains we erect but it will never know the true undiscovered value that lied behind those walls.

The world on its own is not a cold place, however, it is the walls we build around each other that enclose coldness. They bury authenticity, vulnerability and accessibility and reveal to the world spuriousness, impenetrability and independence, all of this painted in the brightest of colors as the shallow foundation shakes when the wind blows.

We will search through your (social media) timelines for traces of you. Only then will we decipher the words you typed out and see the emptiness in the pictures you posted. With careful consideration we’ll realize not only how fragile life is but how the walls built for so fragile a thing actually caused more harm than good.

The State of Consciousness 

Consciousness is a state ruled by those who are aware of and intentionally seek to expand their level of awareness.

 

Your dreams are only limited to what you are aware of. Not to say that those dreams are unworthy, but how far they stretch depends heavily on what you are aware of. In fact, if we make the most of what we are aware of, our dreams are already huge. If you aim for the stars you will most certainly land upon them. 

However in every sphere of our lives (dreamland) there are things that lie beyond what we are already aware of. There are plenty of other planets that are yet to be discovered and places we haven’t even dreamt of dreaming of because the dreamer dreams of what he can have perceive.

A pauper or even a priest (rather a person) cannot dream of living on an island if they are not even aware that there are five oceans on Planet Earth. 

The value of education really lies therein… it is a vehicle through which one arrives to a place they have never been to before. Just like there are different types of transportation, there are different ways in which one can awaken their consciousness. In the age of information “wokeness” is trending as people become more aware of what lies before, around and beyond them.

However, it’s a fact not to be missed that what we know is not all that matters. What matters is what lies beyond what we know (to qualify, not all that we do not know matters either). The sad reality is that it is only those who seek to know beyond what is already evident will ever find out. 

When you discover what you didn’t know, you still don’t know what you don’t know and your dreams are only limited to what you know. The beautiful thing about this is that you stretch your imagination wider each time you discover new things. The more you are aware of, the larger your dreams and vision.

Therefore seek each day to learn something new and allow yourself to see beyond what you are aware of. Do not mock your fellow beings  who are sitting in a dark corner of the street waiting for the world to come rescue them because even if the world does come to them they will not recognize it because it does not fit into their definition of reality.

Perhaps you should take them on a ride to your land of dreams, educate them and allow them to expand their horizons. Make them realize that the world does not end at their feet, nor does it end where the ocean begins but it stretches far beyond that. Allow them to ask questions about things that they have not seen or heard and most importantly remind them that there is an answer to every question.

Always make it a point to ask those around you how they see the world and you’ll be surprised at how much you can gather from that.

Dear Beloved,

2016 has come and gone, a new chapter is now upon us in this continuous journey of life. Welcome to 2017, claim your baggage and enjoy your trip no matter which direction you are taking. Baggage left behind will forever haunt you, claim it and handle it, clean out your closet if you have to.
Your expectations for the previous year may or may not been met, if they were not met it’s not the end of the world (seriously). There is an accounting term referred to as the expectation gap. This is defined to as the difference between what the public & financial statement users are responsible for and what auditors themselves believe are their responsibilities.

This is simply the gap between reasonable assurance and complete assurance. Otherwise, simply put it is the gap between what the public sees on instagram and the number of filters used from the original image. 

I have interacted with three types of people in my life (generally); the overachievers, settlers and sea buoys. You could fall into any of the following and at times you can shift from one state to another depending on the circumstances you are faced with or your general attitude towards life.

The overachievers are the ambitious ones. You always punch above your weight and in all that you do you aim the universe. You work four times as everyone else and most of the time you do achieve what you set out to believe because you understand that input is equal to output. You celebrate the big moments just long enough for you to pursue the next obstacle.

The settlers are smart workers. You generally don’t aim directly for the stars but you understand that each rung you climb will get you closer to the stars and even further of you climb high enough. You live a day at a time and count your blessings as you go, you celebrate the small wins as much as you celebrate the big ones.
If you are sea a buoy on the other hand, you are anchored to their beliefs, traditions and prejudices. You are generally confined to your comfort zone. You are the first to warn your loved ones from the dangers of aiming too high and are also terrified of leaving the zone at which you are anchored. 

The type of personality you adopt at a certain point in time affects the way you react to a gap between your expectations and what eventually becomes realised. More often than not (80% of the time), your expectations are met but sometimes they are not (the unrecognised 20% of the time). 

These unmet expectations can be considered to be “black swan” events as they are considered out of the ordinary (2016 gave us a number of these). However, this is a function of how we frame our perspectives. We almost always forget that not everything is certain. 

If you are an overachiever, you are likely to be devastated by unmet expectations especially having put in a lot of effort towards achieving your goals. You are also most likely to blame the turn of events on yourself, you’ll feel that you should have been more diligent in your efforts and things would have been better. Not everything is within your control.

As a settler being used to taking a single step at a time and suddenly experience a momentary “fall” after missing a rung, you will be unsettled by this and wonder whether you have been stepping in the right direction at all. Even a suspension bridge or a ladder may miss a few steps along the way, that’s when you need to overachieve and take a leap for the next big step.

When as a buoy you are ripped from your anchor by a tsunami and swept in all directions losing the only form of security you had, you are likely to lose hope especially since you have been chucked out of your comforf zone against your will. You seem to have lost purpose and more importantly you may lose faith in what has always worked in your life. This situation presents an opportunity to learn and grow outside of your comfort zone, embrace it.

Dear beloved, remember that life is not a single event nor should it be defined by a single event.

We spend most of our time lamenting past losses or celebrating achievements that have gathered dust, sometimes to the extent that we forget to live now (easier said than done, neh?). Not everything is certain in life and most importantly not everything occurs in a vacuum. 

There are many tiny factors in the universe that play a role in our lives. As part of this universe you also have an impact on what lies around you and this impact is beyond what you can imagine. Sure, work as hard as you should, always celebrate the wins large and small and allow yourself to rise and fall with the tide where factors outside your control take toll. 

As you take on this new year, I urge you to embrace the lessons you learnt in the previous year. Please remember not only the “highlights” or “lowlights” but be grateful that you even made it this far, it means your being is still essentially required in our universe. 

You are a shining star up, take a glance right next to you and you will realise you are not alone. Now walk outside on a dark night and look up at the sky… See how beautiful the universe is with all of us shining our little lights? Why would you let such beauty fade away? Keep shining your light. 

I love you 

Yours truly, 

Msizi Ayabonga Masikane

Honorable Men

Honor the invisible man.

Has a man who has left nothing to be remembered on this beautiful land not lived enough?
Is the nameless man, a figment of imagination, a mere, thing, without a purpose?

What makes a man honorable? Is it the honor that he has proudly done, or is it the lack of other honorable men? If so, what is the use of an honorable man in a land of dishonorable men?

What honour is granted to an honorable man where it is granted by the dishonorable one? Is it not that honor should be granted one honorable man to another?

Again, what is honor when only a few men are honorable? Then who confers dishonor upon those who have not received an honor?

Is honor something to be worn, an invisible coat of sorts, that can be seen only by the conferor of said honor and the honored honorable one?
Without ordinary men there would be no honorable men, for honorable men are ordinary men and there is no greater honor than to be an ordinary man because therein lies the power to deviously confer men as honorable by mere implication. Ordinary men are the producers that hire the cast for the film and the honorable man is a star yet he does not enjoy exclusive rights to the production, it is ordinary men that do.

Honorable men are only honorable as far as honor is confered upon them by ordinary men. The ordinary man sleeps on his own greatness and seeks for it in others around them. If only he knew…

Every human being is inherently unique. The clothes we wear, the objects we desire and our worldly belongings reveal little of our true genius.

However, because the body is fed by what it sees and hears we oftentimes miss the essence of our being. Being honorable is good for the ego but it does nothing for our natural being.

Honor the invisible man.

The Pilgrimage by Paulo Coelho: A reflection

As the old adage goes, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”, so does a Pilgrimage, the thought of leaving behind everything he had worked for, his enterprises and his family terrified Paulo Coelho, this is evident in the first Chapters of the book, even the reader was initially uneasy about reading this strange book with a seeming lack of direction and a foreign concept of travelling across mountains to find a sword. Uncertainty is a normal part of life, and as he continues on his journey, Paulo becomes comfortable with his new discomforts and along the way he faces his demons and learns about the principles of life through his guide Petrus, who always walks by his side. The guide is himself a novice to this exercise, he had never been a guide before, but with Paulo looking up to him he takes on the role of a teacher and a companion, while he himself is also going through a journey of self discovery through his protege.


This being Paulo’s first impactful book, written by him in 1987 at the age of 38, he is also guiding the reader through a journey that he has been on himself but never as a guide, but he does this successfully, taking the reader along the route through Northern Spain to Santiago de Compostella, the resultant is a book not only about Paulo’s journey of self discovery on his Pilgrimage but also the reader’s own. Life teaches us lessons everyday but we tend to brush them off in our pursuit for success at all costs, but the true beauty of life lies in every single step we take, it may seem miniature now but just like a solid line is made from a thousand dots, so is success, it is made up of multiple experiences and facets.