Ultimate Concern

Most men worry about their own bellies, and other people's souls, when we all ought to be worried about our own souls, and other people's bellies. -- Rabbi Israel Salanter 1810-1883

Friday, September 3, 2010

So it's been a while...

...since my last blog here. The short of it is I deferred for a year, saved every penny, got funding and then moved to Berkeley on August 17, 2010. Today was the last day of orientation; I start classes on this coming Tuesday, September 7. Wow.

SKSM is a very special place. I feel honored and excited to be doing grad work here. It's been one hell of a ride to get here, but that's part of how I k now it's my bliss: it cost me everything and I was glad to pay. :)

This Rumi montage says it all.

Come, Come, whoever you are,
Wanderer, worshipper, lover of leaving.
It doesn't matter.
Ours is not a caravan of despair.
Come, even if you have broken your vow a thousand times.
Come, yet again, come.
The minute I heard my first love story
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.

Lovers don't finally meet somewhere.
They're in each other all along.
Out beyond the ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing
there is a field.
I'll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase, "each other" doesn't make sense.
The moon has become a dancer

at this festival of love.
This dance of light,

This sacred blessing,
This divine love,
beckons us
to a world beyond
only lovers can see
with their eyes of fiery passion.

They are the chosen ones
who have surrendered.
Once they were particles of light
now they are the radiant sun.

They have left behind
the world of deceitful games.
They are the privileged lovers
who create a new world
with their eyes of fiery passion.
I would love to kiss you.
The price of kissing is your life.
Now my loving is running toward my life shouting,
What a bargain, let's buy it.
Love comes with a knife, not some shy question.
And not with fears for its reputation! Love
is a madman working his wild schemes, tearing off his
clothes, running through the mountains, drinking
poison and quietly choosing annihilation.
You've been walking the ocean's edge,
holding up your robes to keep them dry.
You must dive naked under, and deeper under,
a thousand times deeper and deeper under.
Love flows down, love flows down. The ground submits
to the sky and suffers what comes down, love flows.
Tell me, is the earth worse for giving in like that?
Don't put blankets over the drum. Open completely.
I have phrases and whole pages memorized,
but nothing can be told of love.
You must wait until you and I
are living together.
In the conversation we'll have
then...be patient...then.

It is now 'then.'

Sala'am, Shalom, Peace,

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