Via Basel: Winter Blues, and a Plea
Forget the pandemic, the sickness of loved ones, and the personal setbacks. Yes, they’re difficult, but I can deal with them, and adjust, as many are doing, some more successfully than others. What really bothers me is the epidemic proliferation of hatred, anger, and pure selfishness. It is not limited to specific localities or segments of society, age, race, or class, etc…. It’s ubiquitous. Of course, it’s easy to point to white supremacists or inner city thugs, but the dis-ease is far more pervasive and common among so-called “average normal” citizens. My concern is not the “extremes” but the “main streams.”
As in many illnesses, the diagnosis is easier than the treatment. I certainly don’t have the magic pill for the malady. I am sad and weary; therefore I will focus on loving, giving, and resting at this time.
I will love because I’m tired of the hating, shaming, and criticizing within me, and all around me. Because unconditional love is the perfect antidote.
I will give because I need less and have more than most, and can’t take it with me anyway.
I will rest because my reserves are low and need to be replenished. Besides, it feels good at my age.
I’m done. I yield the balance of my time to you, dear reader. Make wise use of it.
Addendum: A few hours after I wrote this post came the announcement of the death of the beloved Vietnamese monk, poet, mindfulness teacher, and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh. I dedicate this post to his memory, and may his teachings and actions inspire us all towards inner and global peace.
Basel Al-Aswad, father of EIL founder Christopher Al-Aswad, is a yogi trapped in an Orthopedic Surgeon’s body. His loves in life include reading, writing, hiking, enjoying nature, meditation, and spending time with his large Iraqi family, and now, semi-retired, he is exploring new avenues in medicine, education, public speaking, and social engagement.