June 27, 2010

The Tibetan monks

A kind red-robed friend offers home-cooked food to sleepy, belly-ill traveler.
I follow him to his modest one-room cement dwelling
Sipping Taiwanese tea
They have fled from Tibtet to study at monasteries in India
Because in what is now China, religious freedom does not exist
Their families remain there
Living under communism
The refugees have trekked 23 nights across the Himalayas
Escaping persecution
From a place where culture is demolished and protesters murdered
Land invaded, nature ruined
They illegally cross the treacherous mountains
Threatened by the weapons of military border guards
To find a new home
In a place where they do not know the language,
The food and climate make them ill,
And they do not earn a living
They seek only a life where human rights are respected
They are the nomads of simplicity, faith, and gentleness
Loving the Dalai Lama
Loving humanity
Loving me, for some reason
Serving me bakchoy-alu with rice and kimchee, home-cooked on their gas stove
No money, they insist
I am shocked, surely they expect money for generosity, like everyone else in India
I kindly find my next meals outside
But return for their company
Kalsang shows me the Tibetan herbs they grind and eat for medicine; all natural
They dedicate their days to yoga, meditation, cooking, reading, English language, and Buddhist study and prayer.

It is a life of luxury
And a life of loneliness.
They support themselves by the grace of foreign friends
Normally their families would support them
But they can never return there for they will be certainly imprisoned
Do you like India?
I do not like India people
Always about money money money
Just money thinking only
In Tibet, if I don't have, my neighbor give me,
If he don't have, I give him
No money
Here, we give because we want to give
It makes us happy to give
They offer me free accommodation and food
Which I accept with a gift in return
But what fills me with joy
Is the hug that is filled with compassion, understanding, and trust
The sheer gratitude
Of sincere companionship
Too jiche, thank you.
For I have finally found my first friend in India.

No comments:

Post a Comment