A. Laugh. (for) Spencer.

The elephant lumbered toward the temple amid buses and rickshaws and street sweepers, blessing children and supplicants along the way.  His ungainly enormity is revered in India, as the Hindu elephant god, Ganesha, is revered – as a benefactor, a bestower of blessing and bounty, a deity inspiring love and devotion.

The trunk of this elephant curls out to receive money, which he lifts directly to the man on his back, or peanuts which he keeps for himself; it nuzzles a salty palm, blows on a baby’s face, or drapes kindly across a devotee’s bowed head.   His ears flap at the flare of horns; his tail swings at flies and motorcycles; and when he lowers his head and moves straight toward me, I can’t help it.  I skitter fast.

Spencer has gripped a camera in readiness since we, and a few others, started our travels together in India.  But with that pink question mark unfurling in his face, he seems to have dropped the camera instinctively and become an exclamation mark at the end of the question!

I’ve got to say:  this is the way I want to greet the holy, like Spencer.  Always surprised, because, after all, I never know when holiness, in the unexpected noon of a normal day, will flare out like a trumpet.  And laughing, because what could be a better way to greet something so enormous and beneficent?  And empty, open handed.  Because the Mystery wants to kiss our cupped hands, and breathe upon us some unexpected blessing, and ask us to give up the small lens through which we see the world. And live, then, like a mark of exclamation.

~ by Susan on 03/05/2012.

4 Responses to “A. Laugh. (for) Spencer.”

  1. Susan, I don’t write it every time I read another blog of yours , but I think it, that that was phenomenal -again! And so I thought even today when I read about the elephant…Thank you for sharing your wise and compassionate words with me and others. Johanna

  2. Here’s to living like a mark of exclamation!
    That was a fabulous story.

  3. What a wonderful story, and lesson. Would that many more citizens of SC&USA could/would take time and invest their resources to gain such experiences….. Ours would be a different country and life.

  4. !

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