Andalusia plays strongly in my dreamscapes over the years… Imaginations of what the glories were, with the poetry, philosophy and arts. I am sure I romanticize it all a bit, but looking at what has come down through the ages, it looks damn good from my 21st century perch.
This edition celebrates some of the arts, philosophy, music, and poetry of a gone by period. If you are new to it, just sit back, read and maybe listen to some music from the time period… (yes I know it is Catalan Sephardic, but you’ll get the drift.) 8o)
A kingdom built on the shifting sands of time, a mirage maybe of a time made beautiful by the patina of ages…
Still dealing with the back. People have had some great suggestions, and I am following the advice as I can.
Hope Your Weekend is Sweet!
Bright Blessings, Gwyllm
On The Menu:
Portland Muralist Show Closing Party!
Mara Aranda (3)
From My Friend Walt in Ohio…A Plea
From The History Of Philosophy In Islam… The Matter of Andalusia
Mara Aranda (2)
Poets of Andalusia…
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The Closing Of The Portland Mural Show Party!
When: Noon Until 6:00 – Saturday, June 28th 2008
Where: Olympic Mills Commerce Center
107 SE Washington Street, PDX
Live Painting (including yours truly) Bands, Beer, You Name It!
See ya there!~
From Aman Aman:
Mara Aranda (3)
From My Friend Walt in Ohio…A Plea
Slightly Modified from his email to ER…
I know that some of Turfings readers are fond of animals. So I’m posting this here. Maybe someone will be interested in helping a horse.
If anyone is interested in a really nice horse, free to a good home, PLEASE write me at pantheist @ mac.c o m (join the letters together!)
The horse in question is a 23 year old, quite beautiful, Palomino Quarter-Horse gelding, named “CB”, He is well trained, and has been ridden both Western and English, and he had dressage training.
Due to a stiffle problem (medial collateral ligament calcification) for which there is no cure, he is no longer rideable, except at a walk. His athletic days clearly are over, but he may still be able to handle some easy trail riding. And he would make a very attractive ‘pasture ornament’ . He is very friendly to people although does not get along well with some other horses. He is regularly de-wormed, and is current on his shots.
I’m trying to find a ‘forever home’ for him. I can’t keep him at home and it is too expensive for me to indefinitely pay for boarding him. Yet I don’t want to have him killed.
So if you might want him, or know someone who would, please contact me.
From The History Of Philosophy In Islam…
On The Matter of Andalusia: Philosophy In The West/Beginnings
1. Western North-Africa, Spain and Sicily are reckoned as forming the Muslim West. North-Africa, to begin with, is of subordinate importance: Sicily is regulated by Spain, and is soon overthrown by the Normans of Lower Italy. For our purpose Muslim Spain or Andalusia first falls to be considered.
The drama of culture in the East passes here through a second representation. Just as Arabs there intermarried with Persians, so in the West they intermarry with Spaniards. And instead of Turks and Mongols we have here the Berbers of North-Africa, whose rude force is flung into the play of more refined civilization with a blighting influence ever on the increase.
After the fall of the Omayyads in Syria (750), a member of that House, Abderrakhman ibn Moawiya, betook himself to Spain, where he contrived to work his way up to the dignity of Emir of Cordova and all Andalusia. This Omayyad overlordship lasted for more than 250 years, and after a passing system of petty States, it attained its greatest brilliancy under Abderrakhman III (912-961), the first who assumed the title of Caliph, and his son al-Hakam II (961-976). The tenth century was for Spain, what the ninth was for the East,–the time of highest material and intellectual civilization. If possible, it was more fresh and native here than in the East, and, if it be true that all theorizing betokens either a lack or a stagnation of the power of production, it was more productive also: The sciences, and Philosophy in particular, had far fewer representatives in Spain. Speaking generally, we may say that the relations of intellectual life took a simpler form. There was a smaller number of strata in the new culture than in the old. No doubt there were, besides Muslims, Jews and Christians in Spain, who in the time of Abderrakhman III played their part in this cultivated life, of the Arabic stamp, in common with the rest. But of adherents of Zoroaster, atheists and such like, there were none. Even the sects of Eastern Islam were almost unknown. Only one school of Law, that of Malik, was admitted. No Mutazilite dialectic troubled the peace of the Faith. True enough the Andalusian poets glorified the trinity of Wine, Woman and Song; but flippant freethinking on the one hand, and gloomy theosophy and renunciation of the world on the other, rarely found expression.
On the whole, intellectual culture was dependent upon the East. From the tenth century onwards many journeys in search of knowledge were undertaken thither from Spain, by way of Egypt and as far as Eastern Persia, for the purpose of attending the prelections of scholars of renown. And farther, educational requirements in Andalusia attracted to it many a learned Eastern who found no occupation in his own home. Besides, al-Hakam II caused books to be
copied, all over the East, for his library, which is said to have contained 400,000 volumes.
The West was mainly interested in Mathematics, Natural Science, Astrology and Medicine, precisely as was the case at first in the East. Poetry, History and Geography were cultivated with ardour. But the mind was not yet “sicklied oer with the pale cast of thought”, for when Abdallah ibn Masarra of Cordova, under Abderrakhman III, brought home with him from the East a system of Natural Philosophy, he had to submit to see his writings consigned to the flames.
2. In the year 1013 Cordova, “the Gem of the World”, was laid waste by the Berbers, and the kingdom of the Omayyads was split up into a number of minor States. Its second bloom fills up the eleventh century,–the Medicean age of Spain, in which Art and Poetry still flourish in luxuriant growth at the courts of the various cities, upon the ruins of ancient splendour. Art grows refined; poetry becomes sage, and scientific thought subtle. Intellectual nutriment continues to be fetched from the East; and Natural Philosophy, the writings of the Faithful Brethren, and Logic from the school of Abu Sulaiman al-Sidjistani find admission one after the other. Towards the close of the century it is possible to trace the influence even of the writings of Farabi, and the “Medicine” of Ibn Sina becomes known.
The beginnings of philosophical reflection are found chiefly with the numerous men of culture among the Jews. Eastern Natural Philosophy produces a powerful and quite singular impression upon the mind of Ibn Gebirol, the Avencebrol of Christian authors; and Bakhya ibn Pakuda is influenced by the Faithful Brethren. Even the religious poetry of the Jews is affected by the philosophical movement; and what speaks therein is not the Jewish Congregation seeking after God, but the Soul rising towards the Supreme Spirit.
Among the Muslims, however, the number of those who addressed themselves to a thorough study of Philosophy was very limited. No master gathered about him a numerous band of disciples; and meetings of the learned, for the discussion of philosophical subjects, were scarcely ever held. The individual thinker must have felt very lonely in these circumstances. In the West, just as in the East, Philosophy was developed subjectively; but here it was more the concern of a few isolated individuals; and, besides, it stood more apart from the faith of the mass of the people. In the East there were countless intermediary agencies between faith and knowledge,–between the philosophers and the believing community. The problem of the individual thinker, confronted by political society and the faith of narrow-minded fanatical multitudes, was accordingly realized more acutely in the West.
Mara Aranda (2)
Poets of Andalusia…
Look at the beautiful sun.
As it rises, it shows one golden eyebrow,
plays miser with the other one,
but we know that soon
it will spread out a radiant veil
A marvelous mirror that appears in the East
only to hide again at dusk.
The sky is saddened
when the sun leaves
and puts on mourning robes.
I believe that falling stars
are nothing more
than sky’s gem-hard tears.
– Ibn Abi I-Haytham, Andalusia
This beautiful pool,
a brimming eye,
has thick eyelashes of flowers.
in their capes of green algae.
Now they squabble on the bank
but when winter comes
they’ll dive below and hide.
At play they resemble
wearing on their backs
their leather shield.
Ibn Sarah (d. 1123, Santarem)
Look at the ripe wheat
bending before the wind
like squadrons of horsemen
fleeing in defeat, bleeding
from the wounds of the poppies.
Ibn ‘Iyad (1083-1149, Central Andalusia)
Sparks shooting from his eyes
and wearing a poppy on his head
he arises to announce the death of night.
when he crows he himself listens
to his call to prayer
then hurriedly beats his great wings
against his body.
It seems the king of Persia
gave him his crown
and Maria the Copt, sister of Moses,
hung the pendant around his neck.
He snitched the peacock’s dressiest coat
and to top it off
his strutting walk
he stole from a duck.
Al-As’ad Ibrahim ibn Billitah (11th century Toledo)
The sky darkens:
flowers open their mouths
and search for their udders
of the nurturing rain
as battalions of black
parade majestically past
flashing their golden swords.
Ibn Shahayd (992-1034, Cordoba)
If white is the colour
of mourning in Andalusia,
it is a proper custom.
Look at me,
I dress myself in the white
of white hair
in mourning for youth.
Abu l-Hasan al-Husri (d. 1095)
On the morning they left
we said goodbye
filled with sadness
for the absence to come.
Inside the palanquins
on the camels’ backs
I saw their faces beautiful as moons
behind veils of golden cloth.
Beneath the veils
tears crept like scorpions
over the fragrant roses
of their cheeks.
These scorpions do not harm
the cheek they mark.
They save their sting
for the heart of the sorrowful lover.
Ibn Jakh (11th century)
(Poems translated by Emilio Garcia Gomez & Cola Franzen)
Mara Aranda (1)