moby and me: Easter Pilgrimage To Bucovina (part two)

If you missed part one of my Easter Pilgrimage To Bucovina, go here. Part two follows herein.

moby writes:

“oh, we’ve also put up the new album [Last Night] in its entirety on my myspace page (and it might be elsewhere on myspace, i’m not sure).”

Hear Last Night here (warning: product may contain peanuts, based on Schrödinger’s paradoxical thought experiments using quantum superposition).

Thanks, moby. Have a great weekend in Miami!

BTW, I think removing the forums was a great idea. Don’t cave to the mob of angry trolls. Comments to your journal should be sufficient to keep your website personalized and almost Web 2.0ish.

Below, a little background music: moby, Whispering Wind:

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St. Mary’s Church in Cacica

In a small Romanian village, I stood in an old church in the freezing cold. I stood shoulder to shoulder with the villagers. They were strangers to me. These people spoke another language, they worried about things which I did not worry about, and given the opportunity on any other occasion – most of them would be trying to sell me a square meter in their village for a preposterous amount – like nothing less than a million dollars.

Maybe, I exaggerate. But not by much. Been there. Done that.

And, yet, here we were in the same place and time, contemporaries, doing the same thing and not trying to get the better of each other. We were expressing by our very presence in that church, a desire (more or less) to be involved in something bigger than ourselves, bigger than our worries and everyday concerns, and bigger than our differences and our personal self-interest.

Standing there, I felt a strange community with these strangers as I reflected on the resurrection of Christ and anticipated a hot bowl of sour soup.

front of st. mary's church

Front View of St. Mary’s

Easter Vigil

Standing there in the dark just before the Vigil service began, I contemplated the mystery of Easter and thought it is not only a mystery of love, of hope, and of faith for Christians. There is also an unmistakable sense of freedom, justice, forgiveness, reconciliation and solidarity in the resurrection of Christ.

As I reconfirmed my baptismal promises (rejection of evil and reaffirmation of my belief in God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), I wondered how I will live out these promises in a better manner than I have done so far.

The question remains with me, I ask it again and again. It is a question that, perhaps, can never be completely answered until I draw my last breath.

reading from the gospels

Reading from the Gospels, Easter Vigil Mass 2008, Cacica

In the gospel reading, the two women discover an empty tomb.

The good news is discovered in a manner that is not just a little strange. It is very strange. It is full of promise, surprise, shock, mystery, and questions. Such is Christ’s empty tomb.

The emptiness of the tomb confronts our intense need to understand and make sense of things- even of God. But like the empty tomb, God is not there. God is more. If we are lucky, there is a messenger bringing good news.

An angel announces that Christ is risen. Do not be afraid, the angel tells them. Christ is risen.

Truth is unbelievable and, yet, we are asked to believe in the unbelievable. Like the whispering wind in the top of the trees, the command to love, to know, to do good, and reject evil comes like a gentle, barely-audible suggestion… too easily mistaken for other things, easily ignored, and too easily forgotten in our busy-ness with everyday tasks and worries.

Do not be afraid. Go and tell the others. The Angel tells them. And the two women were afraid and they told no one.

Below, more background music: God moving over the face of the waters from moby’s new album, Last Night.

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As it is with me, I often wonder what can I say of this wonderful non-sense to others. That we have a new life because God has moved among us like he moved over the face of the waters? That we should know Christ to be divine and true because he has power even over death? However, wonderful these things, how can I speak of things passionately about that which I have not seen nor have my contemporaries seen?

And so I tell no one. Almost.

European civilization has passed the twilight hour and most everyone believes that God is dead. Though the night is dark and long and human hope has become like a wavering, small light of a dying candle, no one will accept that dawn has come until the dawn light will be seen by all.

No one wants to call out to the dawn. They fear the night would mock them. No one wants to be foolish. No one wants to be a fool- not in Europe. Soon, it will be the same in America.

Often enough, we prefer, somehow, to be broken-hearted, closed, mean and unkindly-spoken cynics and hypocrites. Hyenas, in other words.

Why hypocrites? Because we keep beautiful secrets and things from each other. We do so because we fear each other. Because we do not trust in one another. Because, sometimes, when we have trusted others, they have sought their advantage through our trust and sincerity.

And we have done the same to others when it served us to do so.

How shall we find our way out of such fears, darkness and treachery?

The Easter vigil service ended with the congregation circling the church three times, flickering candles in frozen hands, and the biting cold wind burning us to the bone.

Miami would be a welcome change…

Vigil Moon

We had noticed the vigil moon before arriving in Cacica – a full moon shone brightly in the night sky. A rainbow encircled this bright, undaunted full moon like a halo, like a crown. It was beautiful. Strange. Haunting. Meaningful. Bright.

More background music. Mystico (below). The prayer featured in the song was written by the great philosopher, theologian and Church Doctor, Saint Thomas Aquinas.

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After the Vigil celebration, the moon was brighter. As if overflowing with light. The rainbow crown was more brilliant, growing larger, and getting brighter. The full spectrum of color was easily apparent to the naked eye. In the rainbow crown, I could see the range of colors from red to violet.

easter vigil moon 2008, third

2008 Easter Vigil Moon with Rainbow Corona

Was this a sign for us? What should we understand from it? And did the vigil moon shine so brightly and so beautifully elsewhere in the world as it shone on Cacica?

After the flood, it is written that God gave to us a sign in the rainbow as a promise that He would never again bring upon us the likes of the flood. What then should a rainbow mean for us- a rainbow that has no end but is never-ending in a perfect circle around a full and glorious moon?

Somehow, we would forget the beauty of this moon when we ate our hot ciorba (sour soup). We would forget our questions about the rare beauty of this full moon and its rainbow crown on this cold vigil night. We would occupy our minds and attention with lesser things- things we can easily understand and know.

Outside of town, we stopped to photograph the Vigil moon in the freezing cold.

And as we experimented with the exposure times, I thought about the Ottoman-Sumerian moon which has become a symbol of faith in Islam. Under this glorious moon and rainbow that I was seeing with my own eyes, I knew humanity to be divided along much pretentiousness, delusions and innumerable conceits in this world.

We too easily accept that our differences are greater than our similarities. We allow our passions for strife to move us faster than our passions for understanding and peace. Too often, our intolerant arrogance outnumbers our noble-most hopes.

Can the only kind of peace that can prevail in this world be the work of evil, treachery and fear?

Must we be so stubborn?! Must we? Must you? Must I?

Casa Antonio

Arriving at Casa Antonio, a family-operated hostel in a nearby town (Solca), we only had ciorba on our mind. And how cold we were.

Below, something different for the background sound.

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casa antonio 2008

Casa Antonio 2008, Solca

Casa Antonio consists of a house and an adjoining restaurant on a hill between a wood and view of the follings hills to the North. The family lives in two rooms in the basement of the house. Guests usually stay in the rooms on the first and second floors. They have one bathroom in the house for guests. Although the rooms are heated, if you leave your room door open for more than a few minutes, the heat gets out. And it will take a good 24 hours to heat it to a comfortable temperature again.

Typical of a Romanian pensiune, you are expected to bring your own soap, shampoo, towel, and whatever
else you need to get through a night: pills, toothbrush, beverage, pajamas, etc. Most Romanian hostels provide you with a place to sleep and that’s it. Casa Antonio is a little better. Sometimes, they will go out of their way to make your stay more convenient- if you ask nicely. 40 bucks for a double is a lot for the money – anywhere.

antonio 2008

Master Antonio of the world-famous Casa Antonio

The hostel is named after their almost four year old son, Antonio, the couple, Aurelian and his wife, and Aurelian’s daughter from a previous marriage, Cipriana, run the hostel and restaurant. It’s the best food for many, many miles (or a hundred kilometers) and it’s definitely the best deal period.

Long before Casa Antonio, Aurelian and his wife worked as cooks in Israel.

aurelian 2008

Aurelian 2008

The ciorba (sour soup) was hot. It was good. The broth of the soup was made from boiled beef bones, boiled beef intestine and the sour juice from fermented wheat bulgar. It was thickened with sour cream and shredded chicken. We ate it greedily with pickled hot peppers and slices of bread smothered thick with sour cream and fresh, crushed garlic paste.

The shower was unexpectedly and pleasantly hot. My bed was warm enough. It took me less than 10 seconds to knock off. I dreamed of my three year old son. In my dream, Johnny was grinning from ear to ear on a new trike- something he has been asking me about for the last few weeks.

Need more? Get to part three, here.

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Stan Faryna
March 28th, 2008
Iasi, Romania

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FEED UPON other posts about moby by Stan Faryna:

>> Austin, Democrats and Degenerates
>> Concidence and Melancholy
>> Bucharest and Chestie
>> New moby album coming out, Last Night

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About Stan Faryna

He is the founder and co-founder of several technology, design and communication companies in the United States and Europe including Faryna & Associates, Inc., Halo Interactive, and others.

His political, scholarly, social and technical opinions have appeared in The Chicago Defender, Jurnalul National, The Washington Times, Sagar, Saptamana Financiara, Social Justice Review, and other publications.

Mr. Faryna is editor-in-chief of Black and Right (Praeger Press, 1996), a landmark collection of socio-political essays by important American thinkers including U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Copyright

Copyright 1996 to 2008 by Stan Faryna.

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One Response to moby and me: Easter Pilgrimage To Bucovina (part two)

  1. adrianklein says:

    “We too easily accept that our differences are greater than our similarities. We allow our passions for strife to move us faster than our passions for understanding and peace. Too often, our intolerant arrogance outnumbers our noble-most hopes.”

    Deep.

Speak from your heart!

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