Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Gift of the Maasai

Everything we need in life, we already have. Within us. That's what I think, anyway. During my time in Tanzania, I was blessed to be taken to the village of the Maasai people. They are, without a doubt, some of the most beautiful, welcoming, open-minded and wonderfully spiritual people I have ever met. Tall, slender, delicate.... yet strong and athletic. But, if you ask me, it's their hearts which are most beautiful. Within just minutes of my arrival, the children rushed over to take my hands and help me unpack. They stood there as we built our tent, ready to help and offer their expertise -- I needed it -- they are incredibly resourceful. Imagine if we were all willing to welcome one another in this kind of way. We're this way as children. Open to whatever lies ahead until we're told not to be. It's funny how much more we can gain and give the world when we open ourselves to all that surrounds us. Their ability to make use of the earth further ignites my passion to get back to basics. The love this tribe showed did not stem from a desire to gain my help nor aid, but rather from a pure form of care and intrigue in my culture; and I in theirs.
(I love the boy on the right ;) "Don't you mess with her!") These people love, in the truest sense of the word. They love you just for being. No matter who you are. They accept you, unconditionally, no matter how "different" one may be - the way a parent inherently loves a child - and it inspires me that these children have that inherent ability toward us. There is no love nor friendship more beautiful, more fulfilling, than one that is honest, seeking nothing in return. This young woman was remarkably beautiful. One thing I long to delve deeper into upon my return -- a relationship with and understanding of the women. They are phenomenal, and I get the sense, know not how beautiful they are. Often quiet and reserved, yet a good man offers them the respect they so greatly deserve. And they marry so young! An entire life together in a secluded village. And they are happy. And they are peaceful. While we're seeking faster cars, bigger meals, better phones - they're living in peace... with all of it stripped away. Want more? ;) Choose less. I love and admire them. A good friend, guide, and volunteer. And then... The sun went down...And you cannot see a THING!
Somehow, I managed to run into this tiny tree.                                                And give this kid major cooties. He did not take well to them. ;)Flashing cameras to find each other.And then, they built a fire for the meal.And treated me like family...It's amazing to sit with a culture so different from your own, and feel so close, so accepted and loved. I cherish and appreciate that more than I can convey. From the Maasai, I've learned, first and foremost, to appreciate and respect the earth around me. Second, not only to have an open mind, but a more welcoming heart. To be willing to love someone as one of your own, even when you have no reason to. What I learned and try to apply to my every day life? Appreciate everything around you, be aware of it and use it to the fullest. You don't have to be in the midst of a beautiful secluded village to do so. You can be in a city, a suburb, a crowded room, an empty room, at work.. Repetez s'il vous plait? At work? Yes. Please. SEE, HEAR, FEEL what's around you. Be open and understand your blessings and what you have to offer them. In a society that promotes staying "connected" by having your email in your palm at all moments while texting and chatting and talking on the phone AND this AND that and.... ;) Sit alone in a quiet peace with another being . See them, really see them... hear them, watch, and appreciate... feel a REAL connection... ;) I promise, you will not regret it. Meal preparations. And then...they danced -- Incredible.Yep, me too...
VOLUME UP! Hear what I heard. The way they use their voices is extraordinary. (Yes, that scream is them).
Thank you for being here!
Next up: More on the Maasai culture, family, and the burn. Take risks, be open, and never stop giving!

Thank you and God bless. ;) I'll be back!

No comments:

Post a Comment