The most important things in life aren't things !


The kind of hope I often think about I understand above all as a state of mind, not a state of the world. Either we have hope within us or we don't; it is a dimension of the soul; it's not essentially dependent on some particular observation of the world or estimate of the situation. Hope is not prognostication. It is an orientation of the spirit, an orientation of the heart; it transcends the world that is immediately experienced, and is anchored somewhere beyond its horizons. Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but, rather, an ability to work for something that is good, not just because it stands a chance to succeed. The more unpropitious the situation in which we demonstrate hope, the deeper the hope is. Hope is definitely not the same thing as optimism. It is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out. In short, I think that the deepest and most important form of hope, the only one that can keep us above water and urge us to good works, and the only true source of the breathtaking dimension of the human spirit and its efforts, is something we get, as it were, from "elsewhere". It is also this hope, above all, which gives us the strength to live and continually to try new things, even in conditions that seem hopeless as ours do, here and now.

- Vaclav Havel, Disturbing the Peace: A conversation with Karel Hvizdala

If prayer would do it
I’d pray.
If reading esteemed thinkers would do it
I’d be halfway through the Patriarchs.

If discourse would do it
I’d be sitting with His Holiness
every moment he has free.

If contemplation would do it
I’d have translated the Periodic Table
to hermit poems, converting
matter to spirit.

If even fighting would do it
I’d already be a blackbelt.

If anything other than love could do it
I’ve done it already
and left the hardest for last.

Stephen Levine

"akram khan; israel galván; khan; galván; the very euphony of their names sets the scene. dance before it became art. this transition, this intermediary space, this interstice is where they operate.

this is not, of course, an ethnic exchange between traditions, an exercise in global dance. it is about creating something from a way of understanding dance – derived, certainly, from dancing kathak and flamenco – that harks back to the origins of voice and of gesture, before they began to produce meaning. mimesis rather than mimicry.

the hunter, lost in the countryside, imitates the gait of the animal he has come to hunt. words are yet to be defined, guttural sounds which are understood almost as if they were orders, acts of command. every part of the body is expressive, movements are read, they have a function. torobaka!

nor is there any need for primitivism. in one of the rehearsals khan and galván grappled with toto-vaca, a maori-inspired phonetic poem by tristan tzara. it was automatic. the bull (toro) and the cow (vaca), sacred animals in the dancers’ two traditions, but united, profaned (in the original sense of the word, to restore things to their common use), in an unconstrained dadaist poem.

israel galván and akram khan. this is what it is about, dancing without compromise and for the audience to go on perceiving it as art."

—pedro g. romero, january 2014

The lowest trees have tops, the ant her gall,
The fly her spleen, the little spark his heat;
The slender hairs cast shadows, though but small,
And bees have stings, although they be not great;
       Seas have their source, and so have shallow springs;
       And love is love, in beggars and in kings.

Where waters smoothest run, there deepest are the fords:
The dial stirs, yet none perceives it move;
The firmest faith is found in fewest words,
The turtles do not sing, and yet they love;
        True hearts have ears, and eyes, no tongues to speak:
        They hear, and see, and sign, and then they break.

–Edward Dyer

Much Loved

When everything was unknown, they were there.
When anything could happen, they were there.
These repositories of hugs, of fears, of hopes, of tears, of snots and smears. Alone at night, they were the comforters, when monsters lurked in darkened corners, when raised voices muffled through floors and walls. These silent witnesses, these constant companions, defenders of innocence. Their touch, yes, but their smell, that instantly calming, all embalming musk, unique to each, soothing and smoothing the journey from consciousness to un, from purity to im, from infancy to adult-terre.
Sworn to secrecy, unconditionally there, unjudgementally fair and almost always a bear.


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