In April, I had a dream. I dreamed that fear was running a powerful nation. I dreamed that freedom was lost in the backdrop of intolerance and discrimination. I dreamed that force became the standard, and that safety was gone for many, including for a man of dark eyes and Latin American origin.
In November, I woke up on a train from Varanasi to Kolkata. Waking up on my upper bunk bed from new dreams while feeling the air of India’s rice fields brushing through my skin, I heard an Indian person announcing, “Friend, America has a new President.” I received messages from America showing fear as a solid presence in their vocabulary. What is this? What is this secret language of dreams? What is this unknown hunching we feel that we can’t name? What is this human intuition? What is the wakefulness we feel behind the darkness of sleep and the blurriness of dreams?
Now time passes. I reminisce my times in the U.S. I reminisce my college days, my summers, my job and friends. I reminisce people from all colors sitting together at our dining hall table or at graduation–the beauty of diversity running through the substrate of the American nation. How many times did I contemplate there building a life? Is returning to America even possible?
In these wats and temples of Thailand, I sit and I look inside to understand my place in space and time. Now, for the first time, bright colors are coming alive in my mind’s sight: yellow and green, blue and white. I sense the land of forests and of the waters of my own birth, the warmth of the tropics, the hospitality of my South American origin, where, at Christmastime, children happily announce: “Feliz Natal,” and smile with a gift in their hands. After the adventure, the return?
Who can explain these dreams? Who can explain nostalgia? Who can explain the human journey through life and the sense of belonging and home? Joseph Campbell? Or perhaps your own indescribable heart?