PENSI – Pentas Swara Indonesia

It’s just beautiful!

If young Indonesians don’t sing those songs, let them rot in hell. 🎼 At least three of those songs, guys! No worry about your out of tune — just sing! Or hum! Ok, sing in silence! 😩

🐣

Live Longer? Keep Fit!

Chasing the sunset,
Pushing cardio. Keep fit.
For one happy breath—

———————————————

Living healthily. That’s enough to make one happy…. Eh? Not really. I mean that’s condition #1 of being happy. 🤩

Ready for another packed week! Oh, dear Corona…. Would you please spare me from your not-only-making-people-sick-but-also-making-them-super-busy?

May all beings be happy.

Salam….

feeling so free with just me! 💞

Am I Free

I’m a torch no more.
I’m a morning for my day
To be. Am I free?

————————————————————

Just one click! Then the monitor shows something brighter and full of hopes! Vast ocean of happiness—

Why is it so blocked to be optimistic? Take a mirror, unlock just one sweet smile, look into the smiling face more deeply a little bit longer and know why…. Dear, Love. Just one click!

May all beings be happy.

Scenery, A Beauty That Prisons

Where are you, oh dear?
Mountains and oceans are passed
By with beauty glued
As memory. Beloved,
Where’s the next stop? Peek a boo!

————————————————————

When I was young; I joined spiritual workshop, class, training; read spiritual books, journal, articles; listened to spiritual preaching, cassettes, radio programs; name more —mostly informal, some non-formal, one formal not finished oh I’m blessed that It wasn’t. Whenever I was asked why I did, I would say “I wanna know God.”

Hopeless popus!*

Has anyone experienced this looking-sophisticated-but-actually-comical thing? Thanks God (s/he’d like to be censored actually) I’m not alone in this zero to zigzagging journey— from being very excitedly curious to being a drunken master. 🤪

What a blessed journey it was!
If I’m supposed to tell that young me when starting through the reading of those looking-sophisticated-yet-actually-comical random materials, I would say “Hey, Lady Haha! You should have a map but a destination is paramount!”

And I still feel so blessed!

May all haha moments be deciphered. 😊

* refer to the video of “How To Dad” in “How To Teach A Kid Curse Words”.

a pinch of salt to my life, no pepper though

Beautiful Scars

Bruised and scarred she is;
A stained-glass window to see
Both sides of her world.

————————————————————

22:22 / Sunday – June 6, 2021

I thought all of those were wounds and warts until observing carefully. I’ve been living with a beautiful stained-glass window which puts colours and gives unique perspectives when seeing inside and outside. As long as it doesn’t derail from being a human being, I think I’m blessed.

Why shouldn’t I be thankful and happy? 💞

And….

May all beings be happy.

Salam.

He Is Zero Today

When moments collide,
Time slows down, space enlarges.
A coincidence?

——————————————————

Based on solar calendar, it is my father’s birthday today. Based on lunar calendar it is his death commemoration.

Mathematically the two calculations are crossing, astronomically celestial bodies are in moving in harmony, momentarily it’s just a coincidence. To his family it’s a special moment— celebrating a point when an important human being’s life in the world is started and ended.

God bless you, Bapak. Happy 0th birthday! Are you watching me? Thank you. But no need, just take a rest, I’m safe now. 😘

my favorite taste, not his coz I eat it not he😁

Put Colours Or Move Things Now

Cold weary corner
Keeps things alive. It’s a choice
To put some colours.

Often time one puts everything in one place and let the other space vacant because it is easier to get whatever within reach. It is good, yet sometimes one should follow the heart to reach out those beyond spatiality.

Re-arrange and better manage one’s self.

The right side of my table is always packed with everything. The left side is almost empty….

Is Life A…?

An old man’s waiting
For the sun to rise. He moans
At the moon. “Dark night,
Pull away. You block me from
Beauty.” — Life’s a mentalist.

Who is the true beauty? The moon or the sun? Debatable! It’s a matter of played tricks of layered lights— light upon light with darkness in between. How would it be not cozy hiding under a cool calm night while patiently welcoming morning? How would it be not fun playing in a warm radiant day while cheerfully welcoming dusk?

Ah…. Why should one be getting old while constantly denying what is….

Salaam….

Loving Like Loving A Song

I want to love you
Like loving a song. It's free,
Everyone’s happy
Without jealousy, they sing
In joy.... While you’re still mine, Love—

What a luxury to love someone who’s been the favorite of many…. Sharing joy in silence….

Like this humble song from me to you…. A Javanese love song whose meaning is deep and joyful; filled with prayer and admiration to the beloved – whoever the beloved is meant by the singer.

Music is a beautiful wire connecting the hearts….

Enjoy.

Sweet Memory of Sugar Cane Child

Sugar cane party
Triggers childhood memories.
Fresh, sweet and crunchy

I loved to eat sugar cane when I was a kid. We would get the sugar cane from the backyard garden but the best sugar cane was from the sugar cane field which was guarded everyday. So we as the kids of the area had to make political decision between stealing the cane or begging the cane from the guards, we mostly did the first option as we didn’t have good negotiation skill that could win over the guards’ rudeness and body size. Trust me they were as big as rhino while we were tiny kids with one small knife to cut one cane at the edge of the field.

One long cane wouldn’t harm the guards. They without doubt knew we stole one stick of sugarcane but they never chased us. Some expressions that chased us away with the stolen commodity were mostly “I know you, I’ll tell your parents!” or “If you come back, I’ll catch you!” or “Little rascals!” or if we were lucky the guard would say cynically “Why only one? Why not bring a truck?” Now I know that those guards would never do anything harmful because they knew how little the cane we took and how weak we were compared to them.

We didn’t do it often though. Maybe once a year. Sometimes we would stand in front of our home when it was time for the sugar canes to be harvested and the trucks transporting the crops passed by the street. We would pull the canes protruding at the back of the truck running slowly.

I was one of the luckiest. My father’s friend would send us a “kolong” of sugar canes (kolong is a bunch or around 10-20 sugar cane tied together with bamboo knots). Then we would untie the knot and give some to our neighbours and friends.

What a beautiful childhood memory!

Nowadays not many of our children might do what we did. My nephews and nieces love to hear my stories about it. They might not know that we peeled the sugar cane using our teeth. Wow! Magic! Hahaha…. No…. Just a show off around the kids!

I miss home….! 🥰

my sugar cane today, not as good as my childhood’s but good enough to remind me of a good time

Have A Healthy Bat!

What’s life, Beloved?
Contribution, not duration—
How much not how long.

Once an engineer working in a battery manufacturing asked me why my mobile phone battery was almost always fully charged. I didn’t know people observed my mobile carefully.

He said “I don’t see many applications in your phone so the battery might not get drained quickly, Rijk.”

“You’re right, Sir. The activities I do in those few applications already take a lot of energy. More apps, more energy, yet mostly those apps are not used often. So….”

“Ahhh! A good choice to contribute better than to be a jack of all trade eh? Try this trick!” He told me some secret of how to keep phone battery live longer. “…. That way battery will stay strong, live a little longer than expected plus you’ve got the endurance you wish. Tell me if it works.”

He also said that it doesn’t apply only to battery. It is about how life is dedicated for. Some people feel satisfied with having a lot and enjoying long life in luxury. In fact, some people live to contribute more to their surrounding, not having so much —just enough to stay content and happy— and die meaningfully.

I don’t know if that senior citizen is still alive. If he died, I’m sure he died happy. Once his colleagues said his life was blessed because of his kindness and generosity.

Alas! I still want to live longer contributing more. Oh, greedy self me! 🤪

May all beings be happy.

current status of battery

The Blessed Drupadi

Rolled dice, Beloved
Can cheat or give you luck. Choose
When to stop or lose.

Pandhawa Lima (5 brothers of Pandhawa) and the Kurawa (100 = 99 male and 1 female, all born from one time pregnancy), both were since childhood to maturity in a forever competition, rivalry and finally Kurusetra war!

I first read Mahabharata, Baratayudha when I was 10 years old. Comic series by R.A. Kosasih. I bet you’ll like them – unfortunately only in Bahasa Indonesia.

I always interpreted the rivalry between those two clans as a battle between good and evil. That everything happening between them was because Pandhawa wanted to eradicate evil, celebrated the good, wanted to make sure the kingdom was well governed, people were well protected with good welfare. Hmm…. I mean yes it was…. But is that the only angle to picture the stories? What was the cause of the war?

Until one day…. My brain was twisted and started to re-read between the lines. Since then I have agreed with those thinking that what Pandhawa had done was to fight for the right of one beloved woman, Drupadi. In Javanese culture Drupadi was the dear wife of Yudhistira (the oldest of the five) and the sister in law of the four (Bima, Arjuna, Nakula and Sadewa).

Drupadi was harassed by Dursasana in a betting party where Yudhistira let her the ultimate bet after he had spent everything the kingdom had in the game. Yudhistira was a highly respected king yet his weakness was one of them his liking to betting and gambling.

So, the epic war between the good Pandhawa and the evil Kurawa is to show how men respect and defend the women around them.

How would those who have read this epic story can’t see this significant line?!

I’m blessed to be a woman. And I hope someday I’ll be with a man who has the dignity to take a side of me when I have no one to defend, has the courage to respect a “weaker creature” when he has other options not to.

Happy International Women’s Day

It is not a one-day holiday or celebration, it is an everyday celebration to stay dignified and loving at the same time as a woman.

May all beings be happy.

Drupadi ceramic statue by F. Widayanto

Prayer For Ancestors – ranting

I’ve been told to pray for the ancestors, overall those in the family tree who have been deceased. We will trace back from my late father to his parents to his parents’ parents, up above to the very first regardless traceable or not and trace back from my mother’s parents to her parents’ parents, up above to the very first regardless traceable or not.

In old Javanese tradition people will do the prayer for ancestors in a simple yet sacred ritual – while some people will go to the graveyard or monument to do it, many are doing it at home. No altar, put thing on your table and pray.

However, four components shall be thoughtfully prepared: the day, the prayer, the food, drink, and (sometimes) cigarettes, and the flowers. Each of those has meaning.

As a reminder, here is the meaning. Please don’t quote me as my knowledge is the result of my personal contemplation mixed with very limited knowledge that I read and hear from many sources.

Chosen Days
All days are good, all time is precious. We are the one giving them meaning by putting some more attention and creating the moment on particular days. So choosing the day is a decision to give meaning to particular time so that it becomes a beautiful moment that boost our mood to connect with our beloved and respected members “above”. The day you are born must be your favourite day.

People will do it at night; many choose to do it at Thursday night before Friday morning breaks, others choose to do it on the day they are born (Sunday to Saturday combined with one of the Javanese 5 days. which is Paing, Pon, Wage, Kliwon and Legi — so if you combine, it can be Thursday Kliwon, Tuesday Legi, etc which are astrologically calculated in a very complicated system. Don’t ask me further about Javanese astrology – I’m zero!

By the way, people traditionally do the ritual ancestor prayer once in 35-40 days or on special dates/occasions but nowadays most people do it twice in a year: around Ramadan and in Javanese new year (lunar calendar). Me? Don’t ask…. 😂

Prayers
To me chanted prayer is a set of (poetic and romantic) line to synchronise the emotions through all senses with the inner self by focusing on what are uttered or sung. Chanted prayer improves concentration. It helps achieve the oneness within self. So, make sure you understand what you are saying in the prayer. Otherwise, you become a talking parrot.

In Javanese old tradition people recite some “tembang” the Javanese songs which reflect wishes and philosophical thought. Young Javanese used to be taught how to sing those songs in elementary school but now that lesson has gone from the formal education and replaced by popular music lesson as a result of modern culture massively affecting and marginalising the local potential.

While Dhandhanggula verses are commonly chosen to be sung softly by those who are good enough to be heard by the wind and human beings — oh please excuse my out of tune; other Javanese songs (Mocopat) can be the alternatives. People can only use the tembang’s tones or tones and verses. There is no rigid rule for that.

Some others will use Quranic verses containing universal prayers — Javanese culture has been merged and amalgamated with many different religions (Hinduism, Buddhism and strongly with Islam) and so Quranic verses are inserted or substituting some items in the culture. Many will choose QS Yaasiin allegedly the “heart of Quran” or QS Arrahman that contains a lot of heavenly joy to reflect our prayers that all ancestors’ souls are living in heaven. Many people also use QS Alfatihah allegedly the “mother of the Book” or the “mother of Quran” which is much shorter than the other two.

Why Quran is used in many aspects of Javanese? There is a lot of synchronicity between Javanese thinking tradition (Kejawen) with the Islam spirituality (Sufi) and that has developed mutual functionality between those traditions.

If you live in Java island especially central to eastern part of the island for just a while (one week maybe), ou will shift understanding about the Islam which you might have perceived as a rigid teaching originated from Arab land. Islam in Java is different at an almost extreme level of characteristics from Arabian culture. No, no I don’t hate Arab or the “Arabian Islam”, I just don’t want people to wrongly think that all muslims are rigid and narrow minded just by some wrongly-defined teaching or hatred-based perception made by some irresponsible Orientalists. Please don’t judge my language. I don’t mean anything but “Islam isn’t like what you think it is, You should travel more to know more.” Ok, I rest my case.

The other group will just say nothing at all, their prayers are uttered silently in the secret language that can only be understood by those praying.

What do we pray for? We pray for the joy of ancestors’ soul — I myself like to whisper in English “Dear beloved and respected Ancestors, may you be living peacefully in the heart of green birds in heaven. May you be blessed with good sight of seeing us remembering and praying for you. May you be greeting us too when we realise that we exist after and through you.” Then we pray for our own selves — whatever good prayer we want to chant. What is good prayer? My goodness, any prayer for your happiness and success! 😊

Semar – a character in Javanese shadow puppet whose prayer is always “thank you” for all given by Life. Many Javanese idolise him for his humble yet respected life.

Preparation of Drink and Food
If you know ancestors’ favourite drink and food, prepare them. If not, take your most favourite and remember to always prepare the best ones.

I never know what my ancestors’ favourite food but I know my father loved “kue lapis” – that with layers of coloured rice cake. So kue lapis is always there accompanied by others.

And the beverage is always kopi tubruk and teh tubruk because those two types are the favourite of all in Javanese tradition. Kopi tubruk is plain brewed ground coffee – we don’t filter it, no strainer no no, some people let the coffee powder settle at the bottom of the cup but some will drink the black black coffee with some coffee paste in it, and don’t forget sugar! Teh tubruk is the other one: you just throw dried tea leaves into a cup, pour boiled water, let the leaves drown down, then sip it up with or no sugar!

Cigarettes? I am sorry, dear Ancestors. Smoking isn’t healthy as cigarettes nowadays are made of those hazardous chemicals that will harm your health. So, please excuse this decision. 😁

Yummy! My mother said I am not supposed to eat it after the prayer, but I do….
Good “kopi tubruk” and “teh tubruk” for the beloved and respected ancestors

Flowers
What flowers are used? The key is always “what’s you ancestors’ favourite?” As I am not sure what my ancestors’ favourite flowers, I just refer to what flowers are commonly used in the tradition. Jasmine, rose, ylangylang and magnolia alba are the ones. As I could only find rose then rose it is! I plan to use sunflower, lily or orchid next time as they re my fave!

Why flower? Flower is always associated with fragrance. Fragrance symbolises the good deeds that were dedicated by our ancestors in their life time that will be eternally carved as a sacred key to connect with their bloodline. It also symbolises our good deeds to connect with ancestors. Only when we do our good deed and preserve ancestors’ good deeds, will we connect strongly with the powerful blessings from ancestors.

Being a modern human being should not stop me from remembering that I can only exist with “the good heart and help” of those up above the branches and trunk in a family tree. Hey, we might be a part of a giant family tree – Homo Sapiens whose ancestors are the same. So, next time I’ll probably pray for everyone’s ancestors.

May all beings be happy.

Temasek, Oct. 29, 2020 / 00:44

Arid Land, His Heart

I never want to hurt myself, I just didn’t know who you are.
I got hurt by a cactus in a desert
Who pricks little fingers,
Who just want to touch this life softly,
Not hurting, not taking anything away.


Wounded, I decided to blame stupidity:
Why did I have to have to have to have to have to just touch cacti? I should have left that arid land long before I touched a prickly spirit.


A delayed regret is less important than a lesson learned but it always gives a story the most significant pivot.


Now
I’ll just admire from here
From where I stand
With millions of prayers
For a secret journey.
Yet I know you are a ghost days and nights.


Someday when I pour down the rain,
You’ll know.
Love is as sweet as water in drought—
Maybe—
If it is not late....

May all beings be happy.

Pause

It’s been quite long I haven’t posted anything in this site. Too busy? Or not able to manage the time? Oh my goodness, how life lasts long yet runs so fast that it rolls in like a useless scroll.

Alas!
What will I give to Life?
Nothing?
Ya, nothing as I have nothing.
Yet, I still do things with my nothing.

Life,
Please guide me through my nothingness to the Light at the end of the scroll.

No, not at the end. It is along the scroll…

Glad to be here again….

The Estuary, Temasek – Nov. 30, 2018 – 9:47pm

cropped-img_07341-31.jpg

Diving – haiku

In a rough dark sea
She is diving all alone.
Tridacnas await.


Are you ready? At the end of an abyss you’ll see a beauty beyond description.

 

Picture borrowed from this link, you can also learn what is Tridacna in it. Thank you! http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2016/1/aafeature

 

Or, watch below video

Temasek – April 1, 2017 – 22:35

Circle – haiku

Moving a circle,
Connecting two dots: She is
Making a Zen Art.

 

 

I am the one holding Zen Art T-shirt and Zen Art painting. The smiling lady is the artist – the one making the Zen Art.

Chiang Mai, Thailand – September 16, 2016 – 00:30am