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Transformation

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By canuto
Words 801
Pages 4
STORY WATER
A story is like water that you heat for your bath.
It takes messages between the fire and your skin. It lets them meet, and it cleans you!
Very few can sit down in the middle of the fire itself like a salamander or Abraham.
We need intermediaries.
A feeling of fullness comes, but usually it takes some bread to bring it.
Beauty surrounds us, but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.
The body itself is a screen to shield and partially reveal the light that’s blazing inside your presence.
Water, stories, the body, all the things we do, are mediums that hide and show what’s hidden.
Study them, and enjoy this being washed with a secret we sometimes know, and then not.

-Jalal ad-Dīn Muhammad Rumi
STORY WATER
A story is like water that you heat for your bath.
It takes messages between the fire and your skin. It lets them meet, and it cleans you!
Very few can sit down in the middle of the fire itself like a salamander or Abraham.
We need intermediaries.
A feeling of fullness comes, but usually it takes some bread to bring it.
Beauty surrounds us, but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.
The body itself is a screen to shield and partially reveal the light that’s blazing inside your presence.
Water, stories, the body, all the things we do, are mediums that hide and show what’s hidden.
Study them, and enjoy this being washed with a secret we sometimes know, and then not.

-Jalal ad-Dīn Muhammad Rumi
EDITORIAL
Jalal ad-Dīn Muhammad Rumi, a 13th century Persian Muslim poet, theologian and Sufi mystic wrote the poem, Story Water, describing how we interact with reality through a medium. A story is a medium reflecting life’s realities, bridging relations, communicating insights, uncovering truths and hoping for transformation. This newsletter is a compilation of stories. They are not simply articles for scholarly discussion or abstraction. These are stories of persons and communities. Behind every issue are faces waiting to be recognized. Behind every problem are voices waiting to be heard. Behind every concern are hearts bleeding to be connected. Metanoia is a Greek word that means change. However, it does not only imply physical change nor a change of perspective but also and more importantly a change of heart and a change from the heart. Metanoia speaks of growth, of blossoming, of transformation. The cliché tells us that life is a journey. I would prefer a pilgrimage; and we are pilgrims in this world. Every part is important. Every process and phases are significant. Every stop, every celebration, every roadblock and pitfalls, every intersection and fork-roads—all are sacred. Hence, this is a story of a pilgrimage towards transformation. The story will lead you to the farthest village of the Mt. Province, Philippines and experience the cancer corruption. It will steer you to the plain white walls of a psychiatric room and will let you sail among the fisher folks of Sorsogon. It will let you encounter the children of Akha tribe in Myanmar dreaming of books and pens while the youth of Kachin State are plunged into the darkness of drug abuse. It will direct you to the road of broken dreams of little girls exploited into prostitution along the dark alleys of Tachileik, Myanmar. It will bear naked the masks behind the violence between Muslims and Christians and between Muslims and Muslims showing the battered yet determined face of interreligious solidarity in Indonesia. However, in every bend and stops, it will lead you to look within—towards the self. I remember a story of young man praying to God to help him in transforming the world. As he grew older in experience and in years, he implores God to help him transform, no longer the world, but his immediate community. As the years passed toward the twilight of his years, the man in his death bed silently sighs and says, “Lord, if only I have asked you to help me transform myself first.” It is in the hope that as we go through the process of self-transformation, the world transforms with us. In the end, it is a story of a pilgrimage of hope.
“Discovering that they are loved by God, people come to understand their own transcendent dignity, they learn not to be satisfied with only themselves but to encounter their neighbour in a network of relationships that are ever more authentically human. Men and women who are made “new” by the love of God are able to change the rules and the quality of relationships, transforming even social structures.”
–Compendium of the Social teaching of the Church, Introduction

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