Chapter 46

I have no wings. But sometimes I see Bangladesh and India as two wings of mine. They have been offered, not to say given, to me. No ownership is involved. There is nothing angelic about this image of «wings». I could have written «lungs». Yes, definitely lungs. I have my main Norwegian lung, and in addition to that, another lung which has no nationality, and no visibility at all. In addition to those two, I have been given two Bengali wings, one in the west and one in the east.

Four lungs, that should be enough – and one of those with no precise address or place. That is a lot. I sometimes see myself as too small for what I have got to contain. Impossible to be true and fully present in all of what has been given to my heart and conscience. There is a need to simplify. What has been given is – always – also given as responsibility. 

But the world does not ask me/us if we can contain or carry more, and more again. The worldexists and has its own weight, beauties and calamities. We have to navigate with discernmentas best we can.

In May 2024, the weight, form and music of those two Bengali wings of mine are in an astonishing dissonance. The joy of one wing enables me to walk on with the heavy, not to say shocking, pain of the other and older Bengali wing of mine. The joy right now has its home to the east of the Padma river: in Bangladesh. I may become a co-citizen of that country. This is fully surprising and unexpected. I had never ever imagined it to be possible. (I did not even know that a Norwegian citizen could become a Bangladeshi citizen as well. From Norway´s side, this was made possible in 2020.) My Bangladeshi citizenship is yet to be a fact. We are in the process only. Many documents are needed. Luckily, my birth certificate is not needed. I am a Nowegian citizen with no birth certificate! 

For the Bangladeshi authorities, I have to prove that I am a tax-paying Norwegian citizen with a certificate of education, a certificate of income, a certificate of residency etc. This administrative process has its intricate elements, as my certicate of education was stolen from me in 1995. I have never needed it, not before then, nor after. I need it now! The University of Oslo has recently received a surprising request from an elderly person who is no job-seeker: Please, find my Diploma dated June 1973. Thinking of this, I cannot but smile. In this world of devastating turmoil, I may become officially one with a people which I have been spiritually and emotionally connected to for a quarter of a century.

The sangiter srot of the organisation MAYER TORI – which will be my address in the northern region of Bangladesh – is very strong right now. Middle-aged and young people teach and are being taught every week, some of them every day. Some older musicians are connected with us. May those who are still hiding, show us their instruments! Sarinda, behala, dotara, tabla, flute and dhol are being taught and practised within Mayer Tori.Yesterday, a singing girl, a young woman by now, was married. She has been patiently learning and, during the last years, patiently teaching the younger ones. This weddding happens in patience and peace. Run-away marriages happen among our young ones and theyare mostly sad. One of our singing and flute-playing boys, a young and competent man by now, became a father last month. He did not have the patience needed to dive deeper into music when he was nineteen and left for Dhaka. He now regrets his patience as a young boy. May he find a way to be in his family and with his flute.  

My western Bengali wing is broken and in pain. I doubt that pain can be healed. The joy is the registration of a new organisation for the teaching and learning of painnting with plant pigments. The struggle to get peace and rightful property back to the children is ongoing. A person believes himself to be the owner of land and houses that was bought in his name for the children, tranferred to a trust which is now absolutely inactive, and where he is the chairman.  He, the socalled «chairman», has misused money, land and many people´s minds. He clings to his rights which the lawyers so far have not been able to correct. I am stunned getting to know about his lack of justice and decency. I am also surprised to know that policemen accept to receive bribes and repress the truth. Even more surprised am I to be a close witness to the unjust practice of the keepers of Law, the advocates. I learn about corruption in a new way. 

We are still in the dark concerning the outcome of this surprising landscape of minds and money. 

I will not trust people without patient discernment any more. But we have to have trust in order to walk in a joyful way on the path. We must believe there is ground where we put down our feet.