Kabir's Korner: The Paradox of Livan.

Jivatma is the personal soul,
the other is God, Paramatma.
What is the difference between them?
Look inside, Livan, look inside.

You are a workhorse, it's true,
but what merit accrues to such hard work?
Innings Pitched will not redeem you,
will not help you find the bliss of Sahaj.

Livan, do not ignore Earth's simple gifts,
stretched like pearls on strings before you:
the J.J. Hardys of this world, who shrink
your Earned Runs Average -- they are all maya.

Similarly: to chase success
in your team's first year in Columbia's District
is also maya, illusion;
a waltz for shadow puppets!

Do not hold press conferences, Livan,
do not threaten worlds with Operation Shutdown.
Instead, Livan, look inside,
treasure the jewels you already possess.

If strikeouts come to you, let them come,
accept the bounty of the goddess Sita.
But groundball outs are also good,
keep that ratio down, that will also please Shiva.

And if, o warrior!, you give up long gappers
(even though you hurl in a pitcher's paradise),
do not lash out in anger when yanked.
That, too, is maya, and must be avoided.

Above all else, honour your mechanics,
that is the breath of breath that forms the world!
No more lame histrionics, Livan!
Go forth, shatter the idols! Live free of fear!

Kabir was a 15th century Indian mystic and seer, and a huge fan of the National League. His baseball poetry is available in a new translation by Vijay Chaganta.


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