Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Beauty of the Land

I have often mentioned the poverty, the suffering, and the hurt I see here in Bangladesh. And all too often that is a reality I am faced with. But, as a great beacon of light shining through the dark clouds, the beauty of this country so often shines past the pain. Today, I visited a school across the Bramaputra River at Binpara. We were once again presenting the peace puppet show, and engaging the children in discussion. But today, it was the beauty of the Bangladeshi countryside which swept me away. There I was, bouncing haphazardly along a dusty path on the back of what appears to be an oversized, flatbed, tricycle. The van-gari is a common mode of transportation in Bangladeshi villages. And slowly passing by, a thousand shades of green, each one as vibrant as the colours on the sari's worn by the women working in the fields. These fields, are in fact rice paddies, each one a perfect square, and each square uniform in size, with the rice shoots jutting skyward, jutting towards that great blue expanse dotted with billowing clouds. The sky itself was a sight to behold, for as many colours of green as there were on the ground, the sky held as many shades of blue. Not the dull blue of the summer sky at home, but a vibrant blue, a Bangladeshi blue. The contrast of field and sky, meeting on the horizon, with the rise and fall of the palm trees, the mango trees and the banana trees, all reaching heavenward, creating an umbrella of shade for the small huts they protect. This sight, this beauty, these colours, are the beauty of Bangladesh. For as many challenges as Bangladesh faces, I shall never forget its beauty, and it is that beauty which I hope reminds us all that nowhere is without hope, nowhere is beyond the sunshine, and beauty resides wherever we search for it.
In Peace.

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