Tuesday, May 24, 2011


In this body, a vessel of clay

It will shatter, it will not resound.

In this body a string of pearls,

The thread snaps, the pearls scatter.

In this body a market bustles.

Strike a bargain with a good saint.

In this body, a garden of flowers.

In Kabir we find a rich complex of images related to the body. In fact, one could say that his understanding of reality is profoundly embodied. Perhaps one of the most primary images of the body sees it as a vessel made out of clay. Finally this clay body is destined to break, and crumble back into the earth again. Learning with Kabir involves a process of getting students to experience their own bodies, and realise in this way their own physical identity. Making images of the body helps a child, and also an adult, to see the link between the human and the rest of creation. We are all part of a greater body, which is a cosmic whole.

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