Saturday, December 06, 2014

Hips and Hopes

The Eiffel Tower, the Taj Mahal have been mine to see on clearer days, all scratched off my bucket list. Angkor Wat. The base of Everest. The Grand Canyon and once, watching Donald Sutherland running to catch a flight in LAX. All done and done.

But last night, from a Saudi Arabian gulag compound, I finally got to scratch off the do-before-I-die list something I thought I'd only see in my dreams --the mother of all hula hoopers.

Gyrating hips are never a bad thing but there's more to it.

The Egyptians knew and know this. As you see the pyramids along the Nile, sailing past Cairo's silvery skyline on a dinner cruise, served up with your skewered lamb, deep fried fava bean felafel, fatayeer coated with thyme and cheese and spicy aubergines, you are entertained by both a belly dancer and a whirling dervish. 


The Turkic Semazen, the belly dancer and the hula hooper reveal to us the unknowable, that we are in sync with the earth in its rotation as its moon revolves around the it while the earth circles the sun; the sun spinning our island universe towards its unavoidable finality.

Spinning hips confirm our coexistence with the order of the eternal, the continual whirly gigging of the celestial empyrean. 

Buddhists know this. They walk clockwise around a temple, using their hands to spin iconic prayer wheels in India, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Tibetan men on mountainsides spin handheld prayer wheels. Muslim pilgrims go to Makkah to perform Hajj and circumambulation as they walk seven times around the Kaaba believed to have been built by Abraham. Jewish couples circle each other when they marry. Christians perform ritual prayer in a circle. Hindus believe we are born after we die, live then die again only to be reborn in a never ending cycle. 

We are more than clay. We are made of constantly revolving particles. Protons, cells. white cells pirouetting through our Chakras.

The hula hooper bears witness to the hands of an Architect, extolling the hands of Glory.

And you thought it was just for kids.


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