Yesterday I came back from Varanasi, one of the oldest city where Indian people come to die. They think that if you get burned here and then washed by the sacred river Ganga, you break the cycle of death and rebirth. You achieve moksha. You free.
The ritual on the river is held at sunrise and sunset. The city is very picturesque and smells of pee, incense, cows and death.
You may be able to see skulls detached from the bodies, I heard. It’s part of the ritual. I tried if I could see any “Give me all I can take in” I thought. Death is only another passage, I was repeating to myself.
Next to me, some corpses carried on wooden stretchers, covered with veils are carried around the city by family and friends.
The roads are narrows and they remind me of Rome as Naples, men are staring at me like if they never seen a woman before, or like they want to see through my clothes. No jokes.
GG. has been food poisoned for 2 days, and I’m walking on my own along the Ganga River, before the evening ceremony. I walk in a temple that looks like a squared humid cave, with a checkered floor. A young boy takes my hands and brings me in front of a statue of Shiva and Sita. He asks me to touch the feet and so I do. He tells me a mantra in my ear and then I try to repeat it correctly. I walk around the temple, so many people walking on their knees, the floor is dirty and all wet, I’m barefoot because you can’t wear shoes on a temple. My mum would be disgusted. Flowers, gifted to the gods are on the top of the dirt. On a little altar a (real) goat is eating them. I walk around the whole space, enter in any possible corner and then I leave.
On the steps next to the Ganga river, seven women in their colorful sarees are using a barber knife to shave the head of a little crying girl, she is maybe 3 years old. At the end of the procedure they paint her head in yellow with a weird paste. Two tears drop down my face, and I’m not even sure what I’m looking at.
I walk towards the ceremony, towards the candle lights. I burn a candle myself and I offer it to the river.
A Baba, theoretically a holy man all wrapped in orange fabric, with symbols on his forehead – that at this point I have too, as someone previously in the temple draw on me – blind in one eye with only few teeth in his mouth comes to me and ask for money. I gave him some and then I wander if I actually gave money to a homeless person pretending to be a baba. I heard they do it sometimes. Doesn’t really matter. “Ohm Shiva Shiva…” He blesses me, while I’m already gone.
Few days after its my turn to be sick, I feel like I have an alien baby in my belly. GG. feels better, she leaves me in this room that looks like a prison but has a view on the river. She doesn’t come back all night, and I can’t sleep well. I look at the sunshine from the window, and I feel incredibly weird about life. It’s 11 am when she comes back, we missed our morning train.
She says she got lost and she walked for hours. Then she starts crying.
“Mother Earth is fucked and no one gives a shit about it. I was there trying to look at the sunrise on the river, but I couldn’t… all of those men around me arguing, looking at me, I could not even sit on my own..and the river is so polluted full of shit …and also, did you know, only man can be burned there. No women. There is no ritual of salvation for women, there is not salvation for women as it seems there is none for Mother Earth ”
After three months of a weird dryness, if not for few occasional tears, I start crying too. I feel like an open tap. All this journey here. India has been incredibly beautiful and special but
it seems no one really has an idea of what’s happening out there, and what does it mean to be a woman in this world. Ignorance is bliss, but is also the plague of this world.
I can’t walk around in some places because on my own planet because I’m a woman. It happened here in north India a lot. A week ago they called the police and the person I’m working for because I was speaking with someone at the cross road while buying a samosa. No interaction, they told me then. So what, you are supposed to be invisible. And if something happens to me is my fault. I felt too many times like an object, I’ve been touched without permission, and a hand on a leg is enough to be inappropriate. I’ve been stared at as a potential source of pleasure and nothing more.
There has been now, too many episodes in my life where I felt I have been sucked and disrespected. I feel dry. There is no more to take everyone, no more.
Too many times if I stand for myself and I speak my truth, is too much to hold, and many men have been trying to silence me. Because I’m “Too much” or “I’m over reacting” . I’m reacting because I’m fully aware. Fully here. Fully living. Fully willing to be respected. If I’m speaking about feelings, ethic values, morals, Mother Nature, spirituality or my true emotions I get treated like I’m insane or a visionary or a crazy witch.
And still I’m blessed to be able to make those observation out loud, to travel, to bring back with me what I see. I see women treated like they worth zero. Or some money actually. I see young girls sold to the best blood line. Sold for money from their own father or brother. My voice shakes when I’m trying to put on words what I’ve seen, what I feel. Please don’t cover your ears. Don’t cover your eyes.
India is not that far from us. In the western world, we often think the wrong things are happening somewhere else, and if it doesn’t touch us its ok.
Because of our ignorance, because the society wants us to stay quiet in our rooms. It is easy to think – it is not our problem – because it not here it’s— there. It’s not my pain is someone else to carry.
In the Middle East or behind the corner: HELLO EVERYONE THIS IS OUR WORLD.
And we need to understand our privilege and act consequentially. Respect the most important woman, the biggest creator: Mother Earth. Stop just taking from her. Whatever you are doing, whatever you are able to do, is because she gives. Feel HER.
We can tell ourselves whatever we want to believe but, as a matter of fact (science speaks clear here) we are made of the same substance of the stars.
We are daughters and sons of the cosmos and we are, therefore, nature manifesting itself.
We are facing extinction because we are so self-focused we turned blind, making always the same mistakes. We lost the connection with our own soul . We actually deny to have one! How delirious is this. How can we possibly listen then, to the call of the world.
We are living in fake environments, surrounded by fake news, eating fake food and consuming fast food emotions, too. We don’t know how to work with our hands or how to go deeper in our own inner research, we don’t know how to listen anymore.
We don’t notice the seasons changing, we don’t pay homage to the sun that keeps us alive, and we forgot compassion, one of the higher virtue of the human values.
It is not, entirely, our fault. We are raised in a crazy society. A patriarchal society that even denies to be one. A society that teaches us be afraid of what is different, to keep an eye to the colour of the skin. We are raised to don’t question, just believe, that if you have things like fame, money and sex there is nothing else to get.
I’m furious at this flat and broken visions of the world. And this rage is my blessing to stand up and speak up loud.
We glorify little men and we still hang to death who fights for growth and truth.
Every action influences the environment we are live in. Stick your nose OUTSIDE, question what is happening and do MAKE A MOVE. We are all capable of making a change. Change happens in small steps. A small group of people CAN change the world. One person can create a reaction. Do not hide.
I feel sick! I also feel sick at myself for all the litter I created in my life, for all the time I did not cared for this planet properly, for the time my laziness carried me away, for the times my ego was bigger than my mission, for the time I said yes when I knew I should have said NO, for my own mistakes that leaded to other mistakes. But the sense of guilt is not going to lead me very far. Say sorry. Admit your fault and then forgive yourself, too. Unfortunately, we weren’t raised to take care of this earth. We been raised to consume. But still every day is a good day to change, to do the first step. Question the way you are living and correct what you can. Now.
Speak about your true emotions! Heal and when you are, put yourself in other people’s shoes. Help who is suffering.
Do you remember the last time you were truly yourself and truly happy? I’m talking about pure Joy, bliss. Were you in a concrete box? Were you stuck in traffic, in an office? Maybe you were drunk, or high, but that doesn’t matter. The last time you were truly happy and you were feeling alive you were probably somewhere outdoor, with the wind blowing in your face or with your skin salty by the sea, looking a sunset, climbing a tree. Do more of this.
With the same money that you may spend in a weekend, you may go somewhere else. Spend some time under the stars, walk barefoot, recognise the wind, read poetries, close your eyes, meditate. Look up, don’t be scared to look at the sun.
It’s a simple way to put it…but it is as “simple” as that. I promise those are not hippies bullshits, those are the world’s secret teachings. And I will repeat them until the day I die. Until my seeds will find a fertile ground to blossom.
That morning in tears Varanasi opened my eyes fully as never before. I’m awake I’m aware I’m awake. And I will sleep no more. There is no time left. We basically eat plastic. The Amazonia was burning. and Australia was fully on fire too. The ice of Antartica are melting, in this moment here, literally, a plague of locusts is taking place in South Sudan and East Africa. Because of the insane way we live the world is collapsing and we are here speaking about absolutely bullshits that will die with us and this planet. What life are you living? For what are you living ? We need to plant seeds of hope for the generation ahead.
We ALL have a mission to fulfill on earth. A role to cover. In whatever scale. You can pull your threads and move something in the universe, listen to your real call, make the right move.
That morning in tears in Varanasi Iside/ Isis/ Aset, Egyptian Mother Goddess, the source of all, earth and magic, guidance and nurserer of wisdom , was vibrating under her veil, and I felt her pain