31 May 2014

Missing India

So after two consecutive years (24 days each) this year's trip to India will go on without me (and my Gathering peeps).  This year's trip is spur of the moment, but at least there is a trip!  I am thankful to know that the students will have some additional assistance as well as the those who are running the English program at the school.  Three people (teachers) will be going for 14 days and they're in for a wonderful time.  "Wonderful" will encompass an admiration for the students who are sacrificing so much to attend,  the typical third-world  health concerns that are inevitable, the joyful expressions on the young children's faces that are happy to be at school getting an education versus working in the fields or factories to help their family make a living, swatting at stinking mosquitoes because they are biting like mad (hoping & praying for no malaria),  and being thankful that they live in America --wondering how their station in life is the way it is and not like where they are visiting...  

My heart for the Indian people runs deep.... of all the places that I have visited, they have had a lasting impression on my mind and my soul (plus the food is AMAZING and not because it is spicy)!  The Dalits have such fortitude living within them.  No matter what rule is brought forth to keep them oppressed, their spirit rises above!  Which is why introducing them to Christianity is a way to break that reinforced barrier brought on by their oppressors.  I see similarities among slavery, anti-semitism, politicl refugees, and the Untouchables (Dalits)... of their fight (for equality) and of their struggle (persecution)!  It's the 21st century and man's inhumanity to to fellow man is still alive and spreading!  I don't see how any one group can dehumanize another for the sake of oppression or annihilation and still get away with it.  It's disgusting and embarrassing to know what my species is capable of!  I read a passage out of Jodi Picoult's The Storyteller today and she wrote, "...when your existence is hell, death must be heaven."  These people are living in hell, possibly hoping for a heaven in the afterlife.  Hindus believe in reincarnation and if this current life was bad, maybe the next will be better... but as a Dalit Hindu, there is no better!  You're trapped in the existence of hell on earth.  Who would want to be trapped like that when freedom is attainable, if not in this life, then in the next (heaven).  As a Christian, I know where I will go (who I will be) when I die.  That is somehow comforting when I think about my limited life on this earth-- knowing that this place is temporary.

I don't know why this blog turned into a rant... but it is what it is!  I'm going to leave it as such.