Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Ramadan 2003: Day #2

The Second Day: October 28, 2003

How quiet is the morning, when one simply arises to pray. How noisy in retrospect, my own actions of preparing breakfast must have been, just a few days ago. How precious is the earth that arises to its day. How in focus and much more radiant when the center of attention is not the routine of emptying a dishwasher, only to refill it with the morning dishes.
On my way into work, I saw a brown hawk near the Pentagon rush passed the highway exit on a low-flight with a rodent of no small size clutched in its talons. There, in suspension was a moment of life (and death) in the balance. There, was what Native Americans would call the Good Medicine visible in the Spirit-that-moves-through-all-things.
As I banked into my exit ramp, I noticed that there were several other roadside animals that had met other fates under the wheels of passing cars and mused that other birds of prey would come to this feast.
A little further down the highway, I converged with other cars to cross the I-395 bridge into Washington. Having spent most of the commute in silence watching the sun rise through the clouds and shift from gray and blue clouds to join the colors of the changing leaves, I saw movement across the roadway that looked like autumn leaves, but not quite…
It turned out to be a smaller rodent that was trapped between the highway walls and was simply trying to scurry from one side of the road to the other. It didn’t make it. A car behind me ran over it. And I found myself much angrier for having witnessed that, than I had been by the Hawk or the already dead animals I had seen on the roadway.
The Buddhists smiled. Tat vam asi—that art thou, and the cycle is ongoing.
The Cycle is Ongoing
But I wonder why, in the two consecutive days of attack in Iraq, there is no mention that it is Ramadan?
What prayers would feed that center? Beyond the mere observation that the hawks are feeding themselves, others have fallen by the roadside, others hunger to make it to the other side?
Israel is contemplating extending utilities to their most recent settlements…

But it is only midday yet.
And there is still time to pray.

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