Don’t Throw Stones

There is an old Arabic story about a very wealthy man who lived behind a huge rock wall.  Everyday when he hear a beggar outside his wall he would throw a stone to chase him away until his yard was completely empty of all stones.  As life is his took a turn and his luck changed.  Soon he was homeless and begging in the streets.  Many years later he returned to his old village.  Barefoot he stumbled on the many stones in the street.  His feet became bloodied and he could no longer walk.  He sat wailing about his fate.  An old woman came by and he asked her about all the sharp rocks and stones in the street.  She told him that once many years past an wealthy man lived in the great mansion.  He would throw stones over the wall everyday to chase away any beggars or children he heard in the street.

The moral of the story is don’t throw stones from not yours to yours.

I understand there are ways to make a philosophical or political statement and there are ways of being cruel and offensive. In August I walked away from my home after having my job eliminated and not finding another teaching position in Las Vegas,  There is not a big call for Art/dance instructors with a PhD. I left to accept a part time job in Tucson, Az. While living in Tucson I rented a studio in the varrio. I lived with only the barest of essentials. One pot, a tea cup, frying pan, 2 pair of jeans, 3 pair yoga pants, set of drawing pencils and pad which I bought in Tucson, a mat and bedding to sleep on.  My landlord reflected that many people talked about how they could live without but I was the only person he ever saw who did. I lived like this for almost 5 months and did not feel a lack.  When I left Tucson I drove across country and back seeking a home.  I finally returned to Vegas planning to stay for 3 months to clear my head and get my business set up, Soul Stories, Walk in Beauty.

After moving all but the largest and most awkward items from my storage I asked for the assistance I needed. I am very grateful for the young man who helped me with out complaint or comment for hours.  Two friends came to help with the last load. When entering the almost empty storage unit this person said, “Shit, this is all just shit, Junk we accumulate nothing but junk.  We could just leave it all.”  This shit he spoke of is my belongings, my drill, a wood lath, a mural I painted.  Belongings I had lived without.  Representations of my life.  Did you notice no furniture? Oh also my home was lost to foreclosure since my job was eliminated.  These items, this junk meant stability to me. It was getting my life back.  I truly understand how possessions are just things and there is a way of making that statement, if you find it so necessary, without being offensive. But when someone searches for a home and a bit of security you do not march in with your filthy boots and stomp it to pieces. Aside from that all my junk are things that I use to create art, to dance, to write.

Let’s consider the source of the comment, a man who claims to have had millions, gained and lost, lives without having to work in a half million dollar home, has a truck that costs more than a years salary.  The home is lovely and full of decorative possessions. Perhaps you did not mean to be crule and insensitive but even in the qualification of your comments you continue to offend.

So let me ask, what junk should I throw out? The letter from the commandant of the Marine Corps for all the help I gave? Perhaps the rugs from Morocco, after all they are only possessions.  Maybe the tools of my trade and livelihood, art supplies, canvases, drills? No perhaps the books or CDs I teach yoga and dance with.

I really do thank you for helping me move the items or junk you helped with but the cost to my feeling of comfort and security teaches me to remember who my friends are and who throws stones.

Here is a photograph of the mural, a bit of the shit I have. And yes, I am offended and angry.

The mural is painted in acrylic and 8′ x 8′



4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Brenda
    Feb 14, 2012 @ 10:45:34

    I don’t remember seeing the mural before, it is absolutely beautiful. Love the blog and the story you used as an analogy. Very fitting –


  2. beautywalk
    Feb 14, 2012 @ 15:28:37

    Thank you for the kind words and compliment on my art work. Yotaki


  3. Irene Tobias Rodriguez
    Feb 15, 2012 @ 06:56:32

    It’s only material things. “Stuff,” not junk. But is part of who we are, where we’ve been in life, and what we do. It might be junk to others but precious to us. I will keep my stuff and enjoy.


  4. beautywalk
    Feb 15, 2012 @ 18:21:05

    So true. Yotaki


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