It is an immigrant's way of looking at the larger scheme of things--this view of each morning as a bearer of magnificence.
The larger scheme of things is the context in the immigrant story, a story of searching for something of meaning.
His immigrant life, for instance.
His scratching out a life even when the odds are greater.
His hoping against hope because hoping is the only thing that matters when all his chips are down and only that hope for grace makes sense.
His making things positive, his thinking of positive thoughts even if other thoughts sometimes stand in the way.
This is the only way: the immigrant has to welcome each morning, the particular morning, for instance, and in it put in the 'there-now' marker, the 'this.'
This 'thisness' makes him see the universe in the new light, in light of the fading light of early morning when the temperature is in the low sixtys even in summertime.
He has to tell himself: I have to face this morning, this day, this life, this hope, this memory of the future--I have to and there is no turning back.
He has to keep on reminding himself of that commitment to each morning, sun or no sun, warm weather or cold weather, wind or no wind.
He has to hope, and hope he ought to sustain in his heart.
Because it is this memory of the future that will prod him on to suvive.
Because it is this memory of the future that will steel himself, sustain him in courage and daring and boldness.
Because it is this memory of the future that will gift him with all the creative energies to make him view life in an endless clear light, endless because it will make him sleep the sleep of the just even if all his days gone past 'this day' had all been of penury and want.
Because it is this memory of the future that will make him hold on, seeing what many could not see: a morrow luminous with its promise of a better life.
Because it is this memory of the future that will instruct him to move on, push on, take more steps, take the critical steps to pursue the dream that has been elusive but now is coming in clearer with its terms and conditions and propositions.
This is magnificence in the morning that breaks out of the dark night, of the early hours, of the dawn in its glow, in its gift of life.
Immigrant life is never a walk in the park.
Immigrant life is a journey in rough roads, the journey sometimes in the late hours.
It has been this way for me but each day, like today, I have to commit myself to each day, promise myself that I will look at this day with gratitude and grace.
Today is a beautiful day, warts and all.
I open the blinds and look at the faint light of the morning.
I do a deep breathing exercise, mentally say the Om.
I offer my day to the giver of life, to the spirit of life.
I go to my small altar, the witness to all that has been going on to my immigrant life.
I get the small glass bowl of old water, the water I offered to feed the spirit last night.
I go to the sink.
I wash the small glass bowl.
I fill the small glass bowl with fresh water from the tap.
I go back to the small altar and offer the fresh water to the spirit of life.
I sit down to write this blog, listen to the chanting of the Benedictine monks on a CD, and pray: Come, come, come spirit of life, come, come guide all exiles, migrants, and immigrants alike.
Come, come, come bless our exilic lives.
A. S. Agcaoili
June 9, 2006