Jun 5, 2014

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MEDITATION: Isn’t that enough?

MEDITATION: Isn’t that enough?

Then Abraham took curds, and milk, and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree while they ate (Genesis 18:8)

In his book “Report to Greco”, Nikos Kazantzakis recalls many colourful episodes and incidents from his life.

Many of them are deeply moving, reflecting our common human struggles and experiences and offering us important insights and lessons.

One such incident occurred when he, as a young boy, was wandering one day through the olive groves and vineyards of his hometown. The vintage, so he remembered, had not yet begun, the grapes were still drooping heavily, almost touching the soil, while the air smelled of fig leaves.

At that moment, while enjoying the splendour and flavours of summer, a little old lady came along. Seeing him she promptly stopped, lifted the fig leaves that covered the basket she was carrying and offered him two figs.

Taken aback by this unexpected gift Kazantzakis first reaction was: “But do you know me, old lady?”

What then followed is described by the author in a gripping way:

“She glanced at me in amazement. ‘No, my boy. Do I have to know you to give you something? You’re a human being, aren’t you? So am I. Isn’t that enough?’

Laughing a fresh girlish laugh, she began to hobble along once more to Kastro.

The two figs were dripping with honey; I believe they were the most delicious I ever tasted. The old lady’s words refreshed me as I ate. You are a human being. So am I. That’s enough!”

That is indeed enough and a very refreshing lesson.

Especially for those of us who live in a society where the challenge to constantly see and appreciate the humanness of all others, is constantly being jeopardized and undermined by violence, fear, mistrust and prejudice.

Carel Anthonissen

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