Run Easter Bunny, Run!
This morning, the shy sun peeped through my window, half-covered with the blind. My room is situated in the eastern blocks and I am fortunate to be exposed in the sun every shining morning. I got up and prepared for today’s interesting experience. Yes, I would visit one of the biggest cathedrals to see this year’s Easter celebration. Although I am a Hindu, I have an open and universal view of the world. Therefore, quite often, I join events from any views of the world from my friends’ diverse backgrounds. I love visiting, whether there is event or not, Churches, Mosques, and Buddhist temple before – but not Synagogue, yet, even from the time I was still in my home town, Singaraja, Bali. As a reference to my experiences, you may read my poem “An Evening in a Cathedral” and a short story “Kue Tart yang Bukan Aku Pesan” (in Indonesian).
I walked to the bus stop and realized that the bus was about 20 metres opposite me. That time I knew I couldn’t catch that bus, the only bus operating from my place to the city on Sunday. I called Jett, a very good friend of mine from Malaysia, who kindly invited me to this event to tell the situation. In the end, I needed to run to another stop point – around 800 metres – to catch the tram! Unfortunately, after running in early cool morning (it was quite an exercise, though :)), I found myself at the same situation as before. I saw the tram in front, but I was still unable to catch it. And yet, I had to wait for another tram that would come 20 minutes later.
When the next tram came, I got on and let my friend knew about it. I hoped I wouldn’t be late. I reached the cathedral 50 minutes later. I was fortunate that the Mass hasn’t started. Then, I met Jett, and reserved four seats.
In Search for God: A Personal Journey
“Glad you come, Hery,” she said.
She then continued, “I need to contact two other friends and asked them to meet us here near the statue.”
“No problem,” I replied.
She called her friends that I haven’t met yet. In the end, the procession began but the friends haven’t appeared yet.
“They would join later,” Jett uttered.
The guide book was given and it helped me to follow the holy procession. And WOW, the choir enchanted my ears to the maximum! I feel it was like listening to Gregorian, a band I found out several years ago (please read this page for more details; one of the popular songs can be listened below).
At front, the Archbishop was very calm and devoted to my eyes. Accompanied by the gigantic pipe organ, its sounds added some atmospheric elements to this holy procession of Easter. The Archbishop then did his preaching, trying to convey the signified reflection of today’s Easter. He also blissfully informed the meaning of Jesus’ resurrection and its relation of universal view of the world. With Jesus’ rising from the dead, it clearly gave its message to human that suffering is a part of human condition, that sins are undeniable but one could always seek for forgiveness. Along this, I accompanied the Archbishop’s lines with all good prayers for mankind.
Afterwards, one of the choruses was sung by everyone, led by a lady in red robe with her beautiful voice.
This is the day Lord has made, let’s rejoice and be glad.
Vaguely, I heard my friend’s melodious voice singing beside me. Added with this great choir, it was so solemn, soothed the deepest heart of mine. Fragrant smokes filled up the air in this great cathedral. It felt so strong and vibrant.
With this, several people started to collect donation. I remember last time I sighted this in another church my friends and I went into. And as I wrote earlier, this donation has a similar concept to dana punia in the Balinese Hindu. I believe it has a similar good aim for human life. I could also feel that this procession, as opposed to several cases in Indonesia, was full of rejoice and comforts, far from bomb threats and other sensitive issues as a consequence of having different religions.
“It is about peace,” my friend told me when everyone started to shake hands and hug.
“Sometimes, some people bow,” she added. I understand, it’s about respect, too. I then shook some people’s hands around me warmly.
“Happy Easter,” I said with the sweetest smile.
A Passage to Being Penchant
After the holy procession of Easter, some of new friends gathered. I had a chance to meet two wise ladies, Kim and Iris. Kim is from Singapore and Iris is from Malta. I was amazed by these two ladies. They are still sharp, despite of their age and so loving and caring, full of wise words. They turned out to be my ‘grandmothers’ now.
“I know a Balinese, Hery, Iris started to converse with me.
“Oh do you? Do you know the name?”
“Oh, I don’t know, but she is very kind,” she added.
In the end, after chatting for a while, I happen to know the Balinese woman that Iris told. Yes, that Balinese woman and I had met before in a BBQ party in a park last year. Her family is very good, too. What a coincidence!
Oh, I almost forgot to tell about the other two new friends, Nam and Luigi! 🙂
Yes, their names are Nam and Luigi. They are a world of fun and yet, sparkling motivated young gentlemen. Nam is a Vietnamese, one of few selected outstanding persons working in Economic area at the moment. Luigi, as the name suggests, is an Italian. He works on Italian and English novels in the area of literature now. I reminded him about being Mario’s brother and he said unfortunately, his brother’s name is not Mario. What a funny guy!
In the end, I should thank Jett for inviting me to today’s chant and fun, yet wise, solemn and full of devotion.
All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness the important thing is they should be part of our daily lives (Dalai Lama).