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Creative Wellness Services provides unique, creative and experiential wellness programs for individuals and groups, such as your work place environment. Services are facilitated to include the use of art, creativity and self-reflection to promote enhanced teamwork and individual wellness.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Stitching as Meditation and Connection to Ancestors

Lately I have been compelled to sit and stitch - as a way to meditate and as a way to get in touch with a place that is deeper than my own self - a place where I feel connected to the ancestors of my own lineage but also to the ancestors, teachers, wise elders who have gone and they still have so much to share and say - it feels like I can see them all conspiring to share some BIG prophetic news for us, those who are left still living on this planet in physical form - they are nudging us to keep on the journey of awakening  and to do some real hard work - the times are calling for it....

Stitching is a way for me to slow down to listen and pay attention....and channel their nudges, voices so to speak...

Here are some snippets of the stitching work I am doing for an art piece and that was inspired by an awake dream on January 29th, 2022 and a poem that came to me from an ancestor about my living relatives - my mother who is turning 80 in 2022 and my cousin, Millie who I feel connection to.- who lives in Spain...

The poem is called SARI  (pronounced Shari) - and the images here are of stitches on a sari - my mom had- wore, and then an tea towel I found at a thrift store this week of The Queen's Silver Jubilee 1977  -poignant as the poem is set in the 70's when my mum was living in England, newly migrated there after marrying my father....


This an awake dream which came first out of this process - was  an incredibly powerful blessing and I am still reeling from it - it came to me - through me - in the wee hours of Sat. January 29th - and it came in the form of this writing - a poem - in my mother’s voice- who is still living, turning 80 this year - this is story my cousin Millie told me - she and I are very close, she a year older than I - she was just 4 years old when this happened to her - she was with my mother, who was about 30 yrs at the time, in England.  I was born in England 1968 and lived there till 1981, this is in the 70's - I was told this story in my 20's but this day in 2022 it came flooding back to me - from somewhere deep - in the form of this need to write - this is what was birthed……I am deeply grateful for this gift

More context - British rule /colonization ended 1947 - left the country fragmented - stirred up lots of hate and wars between those left - wars between Muslims and Hindus began and countries got divided and many people were murdered and brutalized in these wars…my mother’s family, her father had a new job offer, in the next state over, they were travelling to that new location, everyone except my uncle, my mother’s older brother was on that train in 1950, they had third class tickets, an aquaintance of my grandfather’s saw them on the platform, and invited them to go to the first class section of the train, that train was intentionally terrorized, derailed and so many people died on that train, my mother lost both her parents that day, my grandparents gone, her two older sisters died too…my mother and her younger brother were the only survivors from my family.  Had they stayed in the third class they would have survived, only the front end of the train received the most impact- death and loss….My mother has shared snippets of this horrendous day, she says she saw her father bleed to death from a severed leg, she couldn’t help - she was only 8 - she couldn’t find her brother for hours and they never found her mother for days - who had been thrown from the train into the ganges - the river - and she was found much later - Mira was her name and she is often with me and in my art work… 

I have been spending days since this awake dream compelled to share this story in the form of an art installation piece -
I am mindfully working on it with many stitches of red thread to honour all those deaths and blood lost…..

Sari (pronounced Shari):
Stripped of my sari,
you - white boys - skinheads of the national front
threw stones at me
stones and discarded pop cans
rubbish is what we were to you
trash is what you sawMy 4 year old niece and I
we were existing, living
maybe even enjoying this beautiful day
on an english urban shopping streetYou showed me how I didn’t belong
we didn’t belong
called me PAKI
more stones of the tongue this time
told me to “go back to where I came from ”But where I came from
you took that too
stole all the riches of this homeland
left it destitute
“puritanized” it and “christianized” it
left hate and desolation when you departed
it no longer belongs eitherTurned all the gold
the colours of tumeric, crimson, chartreuse, fushia
with threads of gold - pure cotton and silk
that wrapped our bodies
with such beautyNow all stripped away
for pants and shirts
beige, grey, black and white
pin stripped, polyester blendsI disappeared long ago into that
grey horizon
a deep morose and silence set into
my bonesFrom my parent’s brutalized bodies
my sisters murdered
I was only 8 thenInvisible now deep in my body
my spirit and voice robbed
passed onto my children
these are the ancestral burdens
now seeped into their bodies
deep in the sinew - now part of their dnaThe time of reckoning has arrived
divisions and borders
crumble today
they no longer belong
now - the tide is changing
the gold rich tumeric still flows
was never destroyedOnly hidden from your eyes
for protection
can never be broken,
this spirit, my spirit, our spirits
now blinding in its beauty
rich with its big bold and loud colour

by Supria Karmakar (conduit for my ancestors)

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