Dedication: The Visitor, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.
om tare tam soha
Playwright’s note: Are we ready?
A question for Sarah Montague, BBC Radio 4 Today Programme:
When is a revolutionary a rebel?
Casting note: In addition to playing Chorus, Professor Oliver Rackham, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, might also enjoy trying his hand at The Holy Fool, the Lord of Misrule, here speaking.
Jester: (promptingly) We are vanquished!
Holy Fool: We are vanquished!
White Taras: We are vanquished! We are vanquished! Oh! Heavenly Master! In old days this would win you knighthood.
(pic source: SSB2)
Dark Goddess: Our Master would as soon lift a finger on us as the king would march his army against a colony of mice. There will be no knighthood, do you hear?
White Taras: Be in good cheer, Dark Goddess, we love Our Master too. You’ll come to no harm. Your type is not lamb to slaughter ’tis a sucking leveret, a play within a play.
(pic source: SSB3)
Chorus: We lit a fire, killed a beast and made offerings; took some cheeses just for ourselves, and when we had eaten, sat down in the cave to await his arrival with bundles of fire-wood beneath his arms and on his back, to burn at supper time… and what a great din he made to deliver it.
(pic source: SSB4)
We retreat to the Inner Recess as the Coming Master drives his fat sheep into the wider part of the cave – he brings milking ewes and rams – then picks up a great stone, a mighty slab – an impossible feat to pick up such a weighty rock, one would have thought – and blocks up the cave’s entrance with it. We are trapped by our Master!
(pic source: SSB5)
Master: There’s a dish of leather-coats for you. I did not think your master had been a man of this mettle.
Thus Spoke Zarathustra: The Dark Goddess speaks:
(pic source: SSB6)
Dark Goddess: The Master verily sought a handmaiden with the virtues of an angel, but all at once he became the handmaiden of these great witches, and now he needs to fast become an angel himself, very fast, if he is to survive them.
Holy Fool/Chorus: In this way when Samadhi is attained, qualities of nature, GUNAS come to rest by regular process. The End. GUNANAM.
(pic source: SSB7)
Jester: Not quite, old man… I have a poem called ‘happiness’.
Master: Lay it on me, Jester.
Jester: I am happy that I am The Master
I grow more and more in my peace
I make love with many women if I chose because it helps them on the path to Enlightement…
Judy (in combat gear): Call that a poem, Jester?
Jester (unperturbed): Outwardly I’m your regular fool, inwardly I live by a clear spiritual system. Outwardly…
White Taras: Outwardly our Master enjoys wine, women and song
Dark Goddess: and smoking spliff…
White Taras: Yes! And smoking lovingly-rolled spliffs of loosley packed weed, yeah, that’s cool, Dark Goddess! We like you!
Dark Goddess: You’re making my day, White Tara.
Jester: Outwardly I live for my pleasure and inwardly I do everything in the right moment. Outwardly I am your ragged beggar and inwardly a blissful Buddha.
Chorus: In Walter Keller’s The Bible as History, on loan from Emmanuel United Reform Church, Church Library, Cambridge, the story of Joseph follows that of the great master Lamgri-Mari – pictured here.
The King Lamgri-Mari, the king of the Mari, with the impish smile and larger-than-life green-brown eyes, dressed in the habit of a monk – a walking yogi, and by all accounts, a man of peace in his universal dream and in his wildest imagination.
Interruption: What do I mean by ‘public imagination’?
John Dee’s Monad 2011 (work-in-progress) by Nick ward – watercolour on A4 card
Chorus: It is recorded that Lamgri-Mari was at times driven to despair by the ever-rebellious marauding Benites who would year on year force his hand to fight. That’s one way of looking at it, anyway, there might be others …jest, judging by the jest that plays upon his face in André Parrot’s (1901 – 1980) photograph ‘Mari’ IDES ET CALALANDES, Neuchatal, as reproduced here.
White Taras: And now something new from Cahil Gibran’s Master. The story never ends! The End! What and where is The End? We cannot comprehend it.
Jester: I imagine a Puck-like figure to speak this, trippingly on the tongue: I know the difference between a hawk and a hamsa.
(pic source: SSB8. (om tare tam soha: handsaw; Soham/ So Hummm/ hong saw – Hamlet?)
Holy Fool: See first that you deserve to be a giver, and an instrument in giving. In truth it is life which gives to life, while you, perhaps, who deem yourselves givers are only Witness.
(pic source: SSB9)
Dark Goddess: One big Witness!
search term: anna chapman x
Holy Fool: And you receivers – and you all are receivers gathered here – assume no weight of gratitude, lest you lay a yoke upon yourselves and upon your various masters.
White Taras: ‘Various masters’ could get you into trouble, Holy Fool.
Footnote: This has been an example of a particular kind of dramatic-magical practice and one well known to me. The books ‘dipped’ into were as follows: Walter Keller’s The Bible As History, translated from the German by William Neil D.D. (first published by Staughton in 1936); The Prophet by Cahil Gibran, Pan Books, in print.
Picture of Cahil Gibran here. Wuthering Heights by Emile Bronte (Wordsworth Classics); The Odyssey. Homer, translated by E.V. Rieu, Penguin, first published January 1946; Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Frederich Nietzsche, translated by R.J.Hollingdale, Penguin, 1961; Shakespeare, The Complete Works (ha ha), Michael O’Mara Books Limited; Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by B.K.S. Iyengar, published by Thorsons, an Imprint of HarperCollins; Song about Pleasure by Drukpa Kunley.
I got it off the net. All I did was dip with right motivation and then did the ironing – a proud metaphor!
(pic source: SSB10)
Photos marked SSB were taken on my Technika (5 mega pixels) camera from The Sixties Source Book by Nigel Cawthorne, published by Grange Books, 1998 – at the Milton Road Public Library, which is currently under threat of closure, despite excellent staff and devoted membership.
(pic source SSB11)
I am in a mind to soften this Golden Days blog: 1984 remembered. I pushed my luck with these Fellows, these Dons – with maddening certainty.
Nick Ward, photo by Sylvie, September 2010 (The Corpus Clock, Cambridge) – and reflected in the glass, the spires of King’s College Chapel, which D.H.Lawrence memorably described as resembling ‘an upturned sow’.
‘transformational kisser 2010′ painting by Nick Ward
(4xA4, water-colour, acrylic, newspaper, melted wax, felt-tip pen)
I love my drama college.
March 17th 2001, Milton Road Public Library,Cambridge
(pic source: SSB12)
Scroll down for Chomsky on war. Drama begets Philosophy or Philosophy begets drama? (who gives a damn?) More to the point: arms traders from the UK, and elsewhere, beget war in the The Middle East because it is in their financial interest to do so. Who profited from the arming of the Muammar Muhammad al-Gaddafi regime and who is profiting from the use of weapons to do what they are designed to do, kill, kill, kill. As the Tory Party rubs its profiteering hands with glee and send ‘our boys’ off to Libya… why is there so little cause and effect analysis? (18th March 2011). Nuclear Power is unsafe in the long-term. Period – and its no good wheeling out Cambridge University Professors of Risk Management (whatever the hell that is) to tell us that in Great Britain we are not prone to the kind of tectonic activity which has rendered, at a stroke, all of Japan’s Nuclear reactors simple time bombs. No, in the long term all Nuclear power plants are unsafe in this country, not least because of all the weapons that this country has proliferated to any dictator who will buy them. Ask Pauline Neville-Jones who talks of middle-eastern oil as being our ‘life blood’… how about massive investment in renewables, Mr Cameron? There are profits to made in these industries of the future. Fukushima is a total fuck-up.
And, added 19th March, what do we know, for sure, of Gaddafi’s chemical and biological weapons capabilty?
Satish Kumar remembers his great pilgimage for peace (published here 28th December 2010):
On this morning’s BBC Radio Four Today programme (guest-editied by Colin Firth) Satish Kumar spoke of how, fifty years ago, he walked 8,000 miles to protest against the proliferation of nuclear weapons. As he travelled he lived amongst indiginous peoples and realised that his path lay in the ‘confluence of indigenous intelligence and Buddhist wisdom’.
His great pilgrimage was inspired by the imprisonment of philosopher Bertrand Russell for protesting against the continued manufature of the atom bomb. Whether it was with sadness or not it was hard to tell but Satish Kumar reported that there are now 8 countries in the world with the atom bomb – fifty years ago there were four. It might well be more than eight, thanks to British Governmet sanctions-busting mission in South Africa (1989) – what was David Cameron’s role?
source: HANSARD JUNE 22 1993 from Col 197
The sales were not ‘secure’
I wonder what Coalition Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg , representing the Liberal Democrats, has to say on this matter. Nothing interesting, I assume.
It never ceases to amaze me that an inspirational man of peace like Satish Kumar (born into the Jain faith) and arms traders like David Cameron, his party (and his opportunistic side-kicks like Clegg) were born on the same planet.
Until the impossible marriage the Liberal Democrats were the only party not to vote for the illegal war in Iraq and the continuation of the unwinnable military campaign in Afganistan. Deputy Prime Minister Clegg, what’s your game?
search term: caroline lucas green party
.e-mail from Caroline Lucas (16/11/2010)
Thank you for your email and my apologies for not writing back sooner – as you perceptibly note there is plenty of work to do (!) and at times this means I cannot always write back as promptly as I would like.
The result of the vote on the war in Afghanistan was deeply disappointing and does highlight the extent to which most MPs are entirely out of step with the public on this important topic.
This was the first vote in the House of Commons since the troops were deployed in Afghanistan. As I am sure you know, I tabled an amendment to the motion arguing the Commons “does not believe that there is a military solution to the crisis in Afghanistan; and supports the pursuit of talks to secure a regional solution, including a potential power-sharing agreement and ceasefire, thus enabling the swift withdrawal of troops”. This had cross party support but was not chosen by the Speaker for debate or a vote.
I have since set up a new all party group on troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and will continue to raise the profile of this issue as best I can.
Thank you for your support and for taking the time to get in touch.
Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
From: Nick Ward
Date: Fri, 10 Sep 2010 08:55:06 +0000
To: Caroline Lucas
‘The Visible Woman’ (2010), painting by Nick Ward (water-colour, acrylic, glitter, on 2xA4 paper)
Subject: Afghanistan 310 votes to 14
10 September 2010
The motion was passed by 310 votes to 14.
That’s only 14 Members of Parliament who are not in the favour of this war. I wonder how closely this deeply depressing result mirrors popular opinion.
Good to hear your voice on the radio, Caroline… I really did not know that opinions in Westminster are this militaristically insane.
plenty of work to do (a life-style choice?)
What are we fighting for? (pt 2)
27 January 2011
Martin Bell, Paratrouper – rest in peace. Martin is the 350th British casualty in the Afghanistan ‘campaign’ – he was killed by a bomb as he heroically attempting to save a wounded mate South of Nahr-e-Saraj in Helmand ‘Province’, it was announced on the BBC Radio 4 news this morning.
August 4th 2010:
‘Chomsky’s Grief’, painting by Nick Ward (2010)
4th August 2010. In the middle of the night I found myself reading Noam Chomsky’s ‘Hegemony or Survival’ (America’s Quest for Global Dominance), in the Penguin edition published in 2004. On page 128 of Chapter 5 he writes about ‘studied lack of interest’ in US Foreign Policy. ‘Studied lack of interest’ is the likely consequence for the population of the country to be invaded. Chomsky writes that ‘five days after 9/11 Washington demanded that Pakistan eliminate ‘truck convoys that provide much of the food and other supplies to Afghanistan’s civilian population.’ and caused the withdrawal of aid workers along with severe reduction in food supplies, thereby leaving ‘millions of Afghans…at grave risk of starvation’ – risking what should properly have been termed ‘silent genocide’. Estimates of the numbers ‘at grave risk of starvation’ rose from 5 million before 9/11 to 7.5 million a month later. The threat and then reality of bombing elicited sharp protests from aid organisations and warnings of what might ensue, which received only scattered and very partial attention, and little reaction.’
‘The Iranian Threat’.
added Feb 8th: Chomsky on Egypt.
Feb 8th: Spring! (and Chomsky on Egypt)
‘I know what you want’ (8/2/2011) (detail) painting by Nick Ward – 2xA4 card – watercolour, acrylic, printing ink, pastel.
Noam Chomsky: The United States, so far, is essentially following the usual playbook. I mean, there have been many times when some favored dictator has lost control or is in danger of losing control. There’s a kind of a standard routine—Marcos, Duvalier, Ceausescu, strongly supported by the United States and Britain, Suharto: keep supporting them as long as possible; then, when it becomes unsustainable—typically, say, if the army shifts sides—switch 180 degrees, claim to have been on the side of the people all along, erase the past, and then make whatever moves are possible to restore the old system under new names.
‘For Geshe Thubten Tenzin, International Buddhist Centre, Darwin Australia’ (2011 – 12xA4 card -acrylic, water-colour) -side-view to show the banjo which emerged in the process of painting. The spirit of Drukpa Kunley working some old Bon-Tibetan magic perhaps! A speculation which pleases me – and that’s more than enough for a dramatist) – photo Kirsten Lavers.