Amanda Koster

thoughts and experiences of an international documentarian

separation melts away

with 2 comments

SalaamGarage India 09 participant Eduardo interviewing Santosh (LC: participant in the Women's Self Help Group) with the help of Manju (RC: Direcor, Women's Self Help Group) and Aditi (L:local student translator). photo: Maggie Soladay

SalaamGarage India 09 participant Eduardo interviewing Santosh (LC: participant in the Women's Self Help Group) with the help of Manju (RC: Direcor, Women's Self Help Group) and Aditi (L:local student translator). photo: Maggie Soladay

was thinking about eduardos project this morning. eduardo, pretty quiet guy on the inida09 trip.

step back a bit. salaamgarage. early on i set the intention that people would create projects that would cause change. i was thinking change on the outside, external, measurable changes…  and then transformation would happen on the inside (read on). for example: sending a child off to school, paying his school fees, buying him shoes, paying teachers salaries, things like that. “us and them”… “how can ‘we’ help ‘them'”?…because we can and that is fine. but that is a low-mid level stage, one we all must pass through to get to what is next.

and certainly nothing ‘wrong’ with helping a kid out with school fees. i’ve done it over and over again. now it happens by accident as i am onto a different intention now.

what i have realized is that there is an illusion of need wrapped around that intention. not that i see folks as needy, i saw myself as needing to help, because i can. with this i  trip took my vision for salamgarage to another level.

when eduardo explained his project in an email it impacted me. i woke up this morning and thought about it (more like it hit me over the head). you see when i wake up in the morning i am met with the purest thoughts. thoughts that were already thinking on a greater plane, and i am just invited to listen because i am so calm and present.

so this morning i thought of eduardo and his project. “I’m working on an illustrated essay – so there should be some good bits to pull out – I’m interweaving my personal experience from my youth – now – as well as the self help group. we’ll see” … he writes in an email when i ask more about his project.

who knows what that means really. we’ll find out. i know eduardo lived in india when he was a young boy. beyond that i have no idea what he will do, but am looking forward to it.

so when i asked him about his project i didn’t get an answer like ‘i am creating a story about the women’s self help group, creating a call to action so manju (its director) can expand her group to village ‘x’.  going to raise funds so that her salary is supported … she gets and assistant …” something like that.

what i did hear was that eduardo found familiar. a relatedness between his own life and his experience in india. something touched him personally. so rather than having a ‘huge impact on the world’, the women’s group, or even one or two women, eduardo himself was impacted.

and what i saw further this morning is that this intention for salaamgarage is happening. that we ourselves are impacted greatly, and that we see ourselves as related to this planet, not separate of it or anyone. the planet becomes part of who we are. so instead of (or in addition to)  a mini-project like rescue 10 kids off the streets, we can turn this experience into something much, much greater. a shift in consciousness… which is eternal.

what i am seeing now is that extraordinary plans of sweeping change may never occur as a result of salaamgarage. what may happen is that a group of people will start to feel connected, related to everyone, anywhere. that our travelers will start to see themselves in everyone.

this trip was amazing for me, and i will write more about it in the coming months as it unfolds. this was my third trip to inida. on this trip i learned new ways  to accept the ‘is-ness’ of things, moving past separation, beyond where i was before. i became fascinated with everyone being and doing and the simplicity in that. on this trip i was able to ‘be’ the person and the leader that really finds myself in everyone.

you see, once you truly see yourself in others, there is no longer ‘us and them’. when you feel connected, related, at peace, enough so that you can create freely, express yourself freely, see your own life in the situation in front of you.. a situation that on the surface looks so completely foreign…  then a very big monster named separation melts away… and then in walks our shared humanity.

… or compassion for short.

Written by amandakoster

October 14, 2009 at 4:17 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. Change comes in particles that make waves. When we change ourselves, even in the slightest way, that affects the entire world. When we meditate on peace, we become more peaceful and walk the earth in a different way, affecting change. In fact, that’s pretty much ALL we can do … affect our own change and see what happens from there.

    Vanessa McGrady

    October 15, 2009 at 3:06 am

  2. nice shift .. and a “finally” with a 🙂

    problem for the charity big boys, cannot quantify this .. which shows the paradigm shift we are living through, going from quantity to quality ..

    gregorylent

    October 15, 2009 at 3:10 am


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