Writings

 

The Eternal Duel

 

The history of violence and death in Spain is clearly depicted in the bullring in a tradition that reaches back to Roman times when bulls were fought and killed as they are today. The paradox of the bullfight, is that with all its pride and splendor, there is the perpetual danger of the bull conquering man; that unpredictable moment when the bull turns upon the bullfighter and hurls him to the ground like a weightless doll. With his “suit of lights” bloodied and stained, pride and dignity vanish, and in its place is the man himself; a man very much like ourselves: vulnerable and naked to forces than can overwhelm us.

 

The bullfight is the only spectacle where a living being must inevitably die. It is a cruel encounter that ultimately reaches the level of art when the ‘torero’ at the height of his power, courageously confronts the bull with his sword. In that moment, each becomes an integral part of the other. It is a moment when the primeval struggle between man and beast becomes a symbolic struggle between man and the beast within himself. “The Moment of Truth” thus transforms man’s focus into a confrontation with the destructive elements within his own nature.

 

For the Spaniard, the moment of truth is a timeless struggle with death and nothingness. The horns of the bull are life’s weapons against him, while his sword becomes his laughter, his art, and his indifference.

 

 

The Tragedy Of The Elephants

 

The killing of the elephants has been one of my deepest concerns, as it has been for so many others who are truly aware of these creatures' extraordinary wisdom and human-like compassion for their own. It is not only the African people who will suffer from their extinction, but the entire world. In the view of many people, there is an equal degree of mourning for the death of a human being, who has contributed to the betterment of humanity, as there is for the loss of an elephant, whose very spirit soars above us and enhances our world. Each time we lose one of these precious creatures, an integral part of the world dies with it.

It is a slow, insidious process akin to the gradual melting of vast mountains of ice in the sea of Antarctica. The absolute disregard for these heinous killings of elephants, should become a major issue at the UN, where sanctions should be served against all those countries who promote the killing of elephants for their ivory. For the poachers themselves, who continue committing these crimes, all of them should be given life sentences. This in turn, may deter those from further pursuing a livelihood that may ultimately put them behind bars for the rest of their lives.

 

Unfortunately, there are very few great men left on this planet to combat the greed and avariciousness that are so prevalent throughout the world.The very fact that we have yet to put an end to the government of Syria, who have tortured children to death as a means of putting fear into the hearts of those fighting for their freedom, gives one little hope that the elephant will receive any humane treatment from those who hold the power to protect these creatures from extinction. Ultimately, it may be the African people themselves aided by those compassionate human beings from all parts of the world to come together to put an end to the evil advent of the poachers

 

 

Honor Killings

 

According to Amnesty International, each year there are more than 5,000 honor killings throughout the world, and very few of these perpetrators are ever punished. This is a crime in itself.Some of these acts are so heinous and inhumane, it is hard to comprehend how the parents of a beloved daughter could possibly extinguish her life without remorse or impunity in order to restore the "honor" of their family. This form of domestic murder, is perpetrated by those who believe that if a daughter has "shamed" her family by committing an act that runs counter to their cultural beliefs, then it is their inalienable right to take her life.

 

To penetrate into the darkest region of this code of honor devised by men to keep women emotionally and physically in bondage, one must look at some of the "crimes" these daughters were accused of that brought dishonor to their families, and which inevitably led to their deaths. One of the most tragic cases, was the kidnapping and rape of a fourteen-year old girl, who upon returning home, had to beg her father not to kill her for having brought "shame" upon her family. Her desperate pleas to spare her life were ignored, and her father strangled her to death.

 

This horrific case is no exception to the rule, but rather serves as part of an endless hall of mirrors with each reflecting another agonizing tale of young women growing up in a modern society while enduring the brutal repression of their families' anachronistic culture that not only suppresses their individuality, but which blames them for the very sexual crimes committed upon them by their perpetrators.

There are so many tragic incidents where women were killed for merely dressing improperly or wearing too much makeup, or simply looking at a man. Many other deaths were caused by a woman's refusal to accept a man twice her age whom her family had chosen for her to marry. In such cases "the ultimate sin" was for such a woman to find a man of her own choosing, and for many of those women who courageously took that path, their lives would brutally come to an end at the hands of their families.

 

Poetry Excerpts

 

The Muse of God

 

White-robed with arms outstretched to the sky,

you are the eternal whirling dervish;

gathering into your light

all those lonely souls,

who cannot see nor feel the Spirit within.

 

And as you touch them with your eyes

and with all that dwells inside you,

they become dervishes,

holy men;

mad, joyous creatures,

whirling like orbits

around the sun that lives within you, 5r

and within the God who sent you.

 

Still Life

 

You turned in your revolving chair,

spinning light from the sun

across the corners of the room.

 

From my doorway

I watched you reshape time,

and scatter the moments into crystals

upon the polished floor.

 

You held life in abeyance,

stopping the cold breath of the city

while preserving the day like a flower

pressed between the pages of a book.

 

Odyssey

 

Within a sea of consciousness

we evolve.

Unwinding through eons of time

upon a spool of eternal thread.

And in our labyrinth of suffering and joy,

we transcend our myriad lives,

reaching beyond the centuries

toward the Divine Light.

 

The Wish

 

Upon your final karmic journey

may you return as a golden cat.

And upon a thousand spiraling stairs

ascending to the stars,

may you leap and dance

toward the brightest of lights.

And when you arrive,

may you find

what you already knew was there.

 

Revelation

 

I watched you falter in your white hat

as you walked toward me in Lincoln Square.

You were unsteady beneath nature’s dome of light,

and the myriad eyes that observed you.

But you held your own against the past,

and its elusive specter of doubt.

 

And suddenly on that summer’s day,

all your beauty gathered together

like flowers picked at random,

and I bore witness again

to the eternal perfection

behind your uncertain eyes. .

 

Image

 

You are the dream of flowers

bowing to the wind.

 

Innocence

 

You entered my room

and I returned to childhood.

To the endless world

of color and light.

And when I entered you,

reality ceased

and the first dream began. .

 

Transcendence

 

Two spires reflect in your eyes.

An altar rises between your breasts,

and I ascend to Calvary

within the mystery of your thighs.

 

Longing

 

I miss you in the silences.

In the mute darkness of night,

where time travels

upon a desolate road,

and the heart remains hostage

to a mind that never sleeps.

 

The Woman in the Tower

 

I sometimes see his image

in the flickering shadows of the night,

and feel his beating heart

in the restless wake of dawn.

Beyond these castle walls,

there is a man who yearns as deeply as I

for the love that will bind our hearts,

and turn our separate souls into one.

 

Voyage

 

Your love is a vessel upon which I return

to the river of my thousand lives.

And in gentle, karmic sleep,

I watch destiny unfold

the timeless journey of my soul.

 

Limbo

 

The silence has no spine.

It withers in my hand,

leaving me weightless

in a land without memory.

 

The Nun

 

You are pure light,

yet not immune

to the passion

that lives inside of you.

And as you stand

at the gates of your own heart,

listening to the voices

of opposing angels

seeking dominion

over your divided self,

you cry out in the night

for oneness,

and for all heaven and earth

to come together

in divine reconciliation.

 

Homage

 

To commemorate our time together,

when moments crystallized into divine form,

and I saw the eternal light behind all things.

 

The Unseen Realm

 

I am always thinking of you,

and hearing your voice

coming towards me

like the speed of light,

from across the thousands of miles between us.

 

The Awakening

 

We perpetually create invisible barriers,

or those that remain as palpable

as the ground beneath us.

 

We stumble through life

bearing the weight of regret

and perennial despair.

 

Pitiful as the gathering dust

within an abandoned house,

we plod on through a labyrinth

of illusions and dreams,

until our hearts rebel against the darkness;

against the vanishing, wasted years of our lives.

 

And suddenly, we can feel the ineffable joy of being alive.

That divine presence of our immortal soul,

nurtured by the Light within,

and by the eternal Light that fills our universe.

 

A Time of Remembrance

 

As I walked alone through Greenwich Village,

memories of Washington Square

awakened images of the days of summer

when children bathed in the fountain,

and poets and musicians sat beside old men

holding fast to their warped canes,

and the waning years of their lives.

 

As I walked alone through the Village,

I remembered when Joan Baez and Bob Dylan

captured the heart of the city,

and then lost their own to each other.

 

It was a time when the love children

placed flowers into the gun barrels of soldiers

in a silent plea for an end to war,

and for a world devoid of hatred and intolerance.

 

But the guns shattered the petals

and the voices of Kent State,

and the war in Vietnam went on,

while the dreams of our generation

were burned to ash

amidst the suffering and loss

of thousands of lives.

 

“There is light at the end of the tunnel,”

the voices cried out in the political wilderness

while the bodies of American soldiers

returned home to Portland and Maine,

to Baltimore and New Haven,

and to an endless caravan of cities and towns

where flags draped the windows

of our dead sons and daughters.

 

As I walked alone through the Village,

I heard again the diminishing cry:

“There is light at the end of the tunnel.”

We all waited for the light that never came;

for an end to napalm and Agent Orange,

to the burning of villages and rice fields,

and the massacre of children.

 

We were tired and worn by muddied name tags

and coffins filled with the remains of human beings,

who had lost all humanity to another kind of wilderness

that fragmented their hearts and minds.

As I walked alone in the Village

and into the night,

another decade had passed

and the war went on

until the power of reason began to rise

through the voices of John Kerry and Daniel Ellsberg,

and the gathering wave of veterans of Vietnam

plodding on crutches and in wheel chairs

toward the steps of the Capitol,

while crying out against an unjust war

that had taken so many of their own.

 

The only words worth remembering

during that endless war,

were spoken by Mohammed Ali when he said:

"I have no quarrel with the yellow man.”

For beyond his words,

was a more profound, unspoken message:

that we had no quarrel with any man nor nation,

but only with ourselves; and it was our God-given task

for each of us

to create an island of peace and compassion within,

so that the seeds of war

will have forever ceased to grow upon this Earth.

 

Beyond the Barriers of Time

 

I am humbled by her presence.

By her ineffable beauty and mournful eyes.

And by her hands that move like threads of light

through the darkness of the night.

 

I am possessed by her radiance.

By the sensual contours of her body

that enclose me within the realm

of her ancient world.

 

And here I stand; an aging Zorro.

A lonely, hopeless fool

grasping at youth,

in remembrance

of a time gone by.

 

Do I dare approach her?

Do I dare humiliate time

by becoming the man I once was?

 

 

Other Reflections

 

Regrettably, life is constantly creating new challenges and obstacles which are too often beyond our capacity to bear. It its therefore absolutely vital to maintain an unshakeable belief in the course of things in order to accept that everything we endure and suffer has been placed in our lives to help us attain a higher state of spiritual consciousness

 

***

 

At times in our lives, God offers us a respite from suffering and pain while giving us a glimpse of the absolute perfection that lies beyond all of our earthly travails. The challenge is maintaining that awareness of perfection, so that it can ultimately transform our lives.

 

***

 

There are no mysteries, only unknown truths. When we landed on the moon, we ended a thousand mysteries that had endured for centuries. One can apply this same maxim to the universe, as well as to every human being. For every soul creates a trail and a direction, and if one is persistent, it can be found. Even the mystery of God remains within our grasp.

 

***

 

Part of one’s spiritual evolution consists in learning to co-exist with God and to trace the outlines of His eternal truths directly into our lives. The closer we become to mirroring those truths in our daily thoughts and actions, the closer we become to eliminating all aspects of our own imperfections.

 

***

 

Each of us is an isolated particle of consciousness, yet invisibly bound to every living being. This is the heart of the mystery: the ineffable sense of ‘aloneness,’ and the paradoxical awareness that we are never alone.

 

***

 

In a world permeated by violence and chaos, suffering possesses no boundaries. Conversely, if there are no boundaries to suffering, then love and spiritual transformation remain within our grasp. For the Divine law of commensurate balances serves as our greatest hope in creating a world where mankind will ultimately realize we are all responsible for each other, and that love and compassion for every human being should not be a choice, but a profound desire.

 

***

 

Physical love leaves nothing to be retained. It consumes itself, impelling us to perpetually begin again. Passion in its deepest sense is man’s unsuspecting partner in his ultimate ascent toward the higher Self. A woman loved, personifies man’s transcendent source of desire that is raised by God’s grace into spiritual consciousness. Orgasm thus transforms passion, revealing the godhead within, and the soul’s eternal longing for union with the Divine.

 

***

 

Art, in all its myriad forms is our lifeline, the one sanctuary where we can create or cherish the works of others in a world devoid of the disillusionment and tragedies we experience in our lives.

***

 

The supreme artist’s vision is to attain technical mastery over his work in order to create an unbroken path towards total self-expression.

 

***

 

Jealousy is not an integral part of love, but of ownership. It is possession of another human being in order to fill an inner void created by not being able to love oneself.

***

 

My father was an atheist. He didn’t believe in anything he couldn’t see. If he didn’t see it, it didn’t exist. The concept of God was far too abstract for him to see things that were only real in terms of direct experience. This led my father to cast doubt about anything that wasn’t as palpable as his own skin. However, he was deeply religious in the sense he believed that doing good for others was creating God in his own life, and for this reason alone, God, if He did exist, would forgive him for fulfilling His work, while not doing it in His name.

 

***

 

For the artist, work had its manifold benefits apart from improving one’s technique. It could alleviate anxiety by shutting down the mind which rarely served any better purpose than to rail against his past mistakes and destructive relationships.

 

***

 

The creative process enables an artist to lose all consciousness of the self. It is an aesthetic form of meditation that can take him beyond a mind that too often seems hell-bent upon becoming his worst enemy.

 

***

 

Woody Allen and Shakespeare are cut from the same psychological cloth. The difference between them was that while Allen conveyed his existential pain through tongue in cheek, Shakespeare dispensed with the tongue and went straight for the throat.

***

 

Geminis are jugglers. They juggle time and they juggle people, and they often juggle their own conscience. There is a kind of endearing humor about the choreography they create in their unpredictable dance through life.

 

***

 

If mediums can speak with the dead, then perhaps all of the voices of history are open to us? For history was a conglomeration of many lives brought together by karmic laws which might ultimately be experienced and resurrected within our consciousness. If there is truth to the concept that time is a circular phenomenon that can be viewed from different points, then past and present may be accessible to us through this eternal circle of our lives. With every turn of the karmic wheel, there exists the possibility that each of us will experience the future or return to a past that perhaps was never any further from us than the ever-present now.

 

***

 

We are perpetually walking an invisible tightrope without a net beneath us. Faith is the only net we will ever have in this life to sustain us.

 

***

 

The notion of time possesses a dualistic nature: in terms of our daily existence, time has a palpable presence that not only serves to ground us, but in a darker sense, becomes a controlling shadow over our lives. “Living by the clock,” is a perpetual pattern that has been raised to a level of maddening perfection which often creates a gnawing sense of anxiety in people’s lives. Conversely, time in its transcendent form, becomes the servant of eternity, and therefore ceases to exist. Regrettably, only the saints and gurus can perpetually experience this kind of spiritual transformation. For the rest of humanity, we are indeed fortunate enough to experience timelessness in a fleeting moment a moment that cannot be engendered by our will, but only through an act of Providence.

 

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More to come....

 

Victorio is also an accomplished writer. He has completed two film scripts, one of which was selected from 1,200 entries in a worldwide screenplay competition, that depicts the lives of a gypsy flamenco family caught up in the Spanish Civil War. He has written over 80 poems soon to be published, and he is currently working on a third screenplay about the French Resistance during the Second World War.
Here are some excerpts and reflections he'd like to share and welcomes any feedback and comments via email.