I Am is alive and well


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Just back from ten days at our fave place in Turkey.

Like every country a place where great wealth and great poverty live side-by-side.  A place where the rules we impose on our usual normal living get a little jumbled.  A place where those who appear to have it all yearn for the same as those who appear to have nothing.

I am.

A place where religion is different but the same.  Where faith is different but the same.  Where politics … bureaucracy … health care … transport … hospitality … all the jigsaw-pieces of any society … all different – all the same.  Where the common factor is not the different culture but the same human beings as everywhere.  And even though we all like to think we are different – we all yearn the same.

I am.

I am important, I am necessary, I am making a difference, I am bringing something special to this world.  And I am loved, and I am loving, and I am trusted, and I am trusting.  And I am pissed-off that you don’t recognise that in me.  And I am angry that you don’t you see that I care.  And I am churned-up inside with exhaustion, boredom, bad news, anger at being treated like I am a nobody, spoken to like I am dirt on your shoe, ignored and invisible to you.  All because you think that if you talk to me, make eye contact with me, reply to me, connect with me, that I will make you buy from me.  Make you eat in my restaurant, make you buy something you don’t need or want, make you spend a few lira more than another place charges.

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We walked past a young woman with a tiny baby almost every night.  The baby was always lying on her lap in an odd “dead to the world” sleep position.  She always sat in the same place.  Always with the same desperate eye-contact.  The desperate plea of hand and body-language.  We were taught by the locals that it was all a sham – please don’t give her any money.  It’s hard to judge harshly.  It’s hard to disconnect.  It’s hard to say no.  It’s hard having a pocket full of money and to give none.  It’s easy to feel better giving a little of our much.  It’s easy to believe the worst and to act for the best – keep walking it’s all a sham, darling.

Some of us yearn to be seen so we can take your money.

In the west we have beggars.  In the west we are the locals.  In the west we know.  In the west our culture is different but people are not.  I am churned-up inside with exhaustion, boredom, bad news, anger at being treated like I am a nobody … keep smiling it’s for the best, darling.

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This holiday I met I am time and time again.  I am is universal.  I am is in all of us.  I am is of hope, is of something not of this easily defined economic wealth or economic poverty.  I am is of kindness, is of goodness, is of wanting to be seen … wanting to be known … wanting to be safe …

We in the west have made I Am an eternal and – in the main – a detached God.  A God some say is a sham (keep walking, darling).  A God some say is for the best (keep smiling, darling).  A God who is culturally defined and packaged religiously.

A God who is a revered “I AM”.

We all are (am) great goodness and great badness.  We are all that mix of hope and despair.  Of kindness or anger.  Of caring or rejection.  Of eye-connection or eyes-wide-shut.  We each regard this as normal.  We each accept our own weaknesses and individuality.  Indeed we seek to embrace our individuality.  We fight to be who we each are.

Why should I Am demand we are not who we are (am)?

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We all care when we are allowed.  We all want to be seen. To be known.  Whether it be Turkey or England.  Whether it be today or tomorrow.  Whether we be “rich” or we be “poor”.  We are ALL …

I am.

Why must we be any other way?

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