REFLECT BEFORE CELEBRATE

Why was I born? Why were you born?
Into this Earth.

My birthday always makes me think. This year more than ever, I don‘t know why. The questioning thought: Everything I‘ve done in the last 48yrs, have they in any way really fulfilled the reason WHY I WAS BORN? Or have I up until now, in a deep subtle way, just been wasting my time? For I was not born in order to celebrate that birth annually. Viewed logically, that‘s a senseless feedback loop – unless augmented, nay, superseded, by a PURPOSE – and the fulfilment of that purpose – of my birth into this earth.

49 years ago, I was not here. I was not a part of this daily hustle and bustle, getting into cars and busses, voting in elections, raising kids, being earthy and doing the earthly. So, where was I? And why did I come here? Where were you before you were born? And why did you come here?

Every year the certainty that I‘m closer to my earthly death, to my departure. I just feel it, so strongly. That reduced distance. It‘s not just a piece of general knowledge that we all have: Everybody dies one day. Yes we all know this. But it is more than this. It‘s also a solid emotional perception, a physical presence that comes closer, that you can feel when you close your eyes and pay attention.

My birthday makes me think, not just of birth, but also of death.

My brother, Kwame, aged 19, died on my 21st birthday. It was a few weeks before his own 20th birthday. The person closest to me. Why did he come? Did he or did he not fulfil the purpose of it? And then he was gone again. It‘s a date we share, in life and death.

Life existed before we were born into it. It was perfect, already. Before we were created, Creation was already formed and perfect. This realisation makes me think and there is no end to this reflection. Just a clear line of perception – an intuitive perception:

You are not without a reason and not without a purpose, unless you fail – consciously or unconsciously – to discover that reason and that purpose; and then to – deliberately or instinctively – fulfil that reason and that purpose.

It‘s a serious and thought-provoking business meeting your birthday again, and still not knowing why. Or knowing if you’re fulfilling why, as best as you can. Year after year.

I don‘t need to celebrate my birthday. I need to reflect upon it.

Reflect before celebrate.

Che Chidi Chukwumerije
06. April 2022

Little Che – mid 1970s.

EYES ON THE BALL

Up the road a few trees beckon
A moment of shade on a hot sunny day
If I stop and seek here refuge
I’ll miss my appointment at the end of my way
For my path is not my goal.

No thing of beauty will hold me down
No period of quiet will slow me down
No place of peace will hold me back
No woman, no wine, no work, no glory will change my story
For the path is not the goal, no matter what they say.

– che chidi chukwumerije.