Monday, November 06, 2006

Mere Miriame, Brueghel, and the flag..

TO LİVE
AS SİNGLE AND FREE AS A TREE
AND FRATERNAL AS A FOREST
NAZIM HIKMET RAN

I read a lot.. I really read a lot.. and read it all .. books.. mag's articles.. medical reports.. and all sort.. psychiatric, psychological, social, horrors, novels, essays, memories, travel journals, blogs and comments.... in three languages..
I believe reading opens a beautiful new frontier to you.. no one can have so many experiments.. of all kind.. but you can.. if you read..
I love the power of words.. I believe they tie humans to each other.. they tell about love. peace.. belief..eternity..history..but as all powerful things they have another face too.. they are powerful dividers.. and can stop your breathing.. or give you immense pain.. or frustrations..
I am an enjoyer.. not because life is offering us lots of things to enjoy.. the world is getting crazier every minute we spend.. wars.. man killing.. crimes against children.. animals.. ecological changes.. brutal city life.. less empathy.. more rudeness..
but I force myself to see things to make me happy and grateful of who I am.. and how I live.. I don't have to look far.. there are two wars going on next to the border of my country.. and another one going on for years.. too many lost lives.. lost loved ones.. lost memories.. but looking at other people's loss and misfortune.. comparing and being happy.. is not possible.. this is not what I mean by being grateful.. We have to try to find those small details..
but when you succeed to see in the details.. you find things to enjoy.. the smell of baking cake.. voice of chatting and laughing children.. art created by beautiful hands and beautiful minds..
there is a saying in my country.. the one who sees the forest doesn't see the tree.. the one who sees the tree doesn't see the forest.. and that is true..
I sometimes read the newspapers and think of those paintings of Brueghel.. we had a class at high school.. a lesson without a name.. no school paraphernalia was needed.. just us and Mere Miriame.. she was showing us slides.. made us listen to classical music and we talked.. we were a group of young girls.. muslim.. jewish.. catholic and orthodox.. she prepared us to life.. now I know she meant it.. we were talking about how to behave.. and see in the details.. she showed us Sacré-Coeur's painted glass rosaces.. in the company of Moonlight's music.. and I still remember her telling us.. at a moment music was getting cheerfull '' can you see the moonlight glittering on the lake.. there it is''.. and I can swear.. I saw.. she was the one who showed us this painting of people gethered around a huge dining table.. such a joyful setting and colours..but she showed us that.. when you look closer.. you can see vulgarity in the details..
this is the real world..
I read a french blog today.. the post of the october 29th.. and the comments.. about turkish nation being a military one.. and a lover of flags.. and about having Mustapha's Posters ( by this he named Atatürk the founder of the republic) everywhere.. with his adressing to the turkish youth written on..''to protect the republic is your primary responsability''..
and of course I thought of the flag on my blog.. why and when did I put it on the template.. it was the day Pamuk won the Nobel prize.. and the french parliement discussing about ... you know..
this is a craft blog I know.. and I love my crafts.. I love to share them with you.. my crafts and my life here in Istanbul.. and I love .. to read each of your's daily life..
but I am a crafting .. woman.. and a human.. and I have thoughts..
what pushed me to put the flag on this blog..
I believe very deeply.. that.. flag is a symbol in my culture.. a symbol..of very hard acquired things.. like liberty.. and republic.. and democracy .. and being a person..
the flag is the symbol of a new founded republic.. that Atatürk and only him.. could dream about.. and made a gift to us.. turning ordinary people from being simple believers.. obeyers..and servants of an emperor.. into a nation who has rights.. human and citizen rights.. learning rights.. choosing rights.. woman rights.. travelling rights..
do you know that in the preparations of traditional wedding.. two things are given to the bride to take to her new home.. the flag and the Koran.. two very different and high symbols.. you can understand the meaning of Koran.. such as the Bible.. the Old Testament.. to not to forget our belief and moral.. I keep my father's Koran and my mother's flag together..in my closet..
the flag is the reminder of what we have.. and want to keep.. freedom..and democracy..
I always thought that if Turkey was at another geographic site.. this would be different.. for example in Scandinavia.. I know Finland is a young republic.. but lives peacefully from then.. between peaceful neighbours.. fully concentrated on being happy. civilised and productive.. they are not as alert as us.. because having such quarelling geographic neighbours.. makes you alert.. and the islamic countries rejecting laicism and european countries rejecting history.. makes you a sole sheep.. no peaceful herd to join..
and so is.. the politics of the country.. the islamists.. threatening the democracy.. not the republic.. there are islamic republics as Iran you know.. but I suspect that this is a true democracy.. ask to the women..
so we have only our hearts and our flags.. to keep us strong.. the flag doesn't belong to the army or state.. it belongs to us.. each of us..
5 yrs ago.. there were not so many people with flags in the streets .. at the celebration of october 29th .. because we felt more secure.. but nowadays.. we feel the urge of taking our flag and join the celebration .. this is our treasure.. something like what the worn nightgown of a mother is to a baby.. it is soothing.. pacifying..
this is not a military.. or nationalist symbol.. this is a way of remembering.. a man's dream.. a man's aspiration for higher ideals.. not for himself but for a whole nation.. a nation he had created.. and guided.. and listened to.. and advised.. to see better days.. I know that my country has never been capable of telling about himself.. with all the tradition.. language.. and historical differences..
so today I wanted to share.. why sometimes I feel sad.. ( that Sandy.. such a love.. understood and told in such a nice way..) I wanted to explain to you.. the reason of the existance of the flag..
is only to remind me.. that I am a proud woman.. not proud because of the internal or international politics of my country.. or a blind worshipping of my nation.. but I am proud because.. I am one of those followers of one of the best persons.. leaders.. of world..a foresighted..honorable men.. who believed in us.. who relied on the youngs.. and advised them..
''do not believe and take this republic as granted.. you will always have to care about it.. ''
I am a simple woman.. with the highest responsability.. the one of being aware.. and alert.. because I am in charge of my family.. children.. like all of you.. and of the future of my country and my republic.. very different from you..

5 comments:

Tongue in Cheek Antiques said...

Your wisdom and faith lead you beautifully...you are a woman full of grace!

Laura said...

What wonderful ideas you have put forth in this entry. Thank you for sharing your very educated and reasonable thoughts.

Jackie said...

What a beautiful post! I am moved by your thoughts and the wonderful way you've shared them. Thank you!

Britt-Arnhild said...

These are some very interesting and wise thoughts Pinar. Thanks for sharing them.
I love reading just like you.
The first part of your blog reminded me of a book I am reading "Reading Lolita in Teheran" Do you know it?

Mrs. Staggs said...

I found your post interesting today. My thoughts have been preoccupied with similar thoughts of democracy and the founding principles on which my country was established, partly because we are in the midst of elections and also because I feel that so many in my country have come to take it all for granted and don't appreciate what it all truly stands for. "By and for the people...Freedom and justice for all."
I respect you very much for writing your feelings here today.