God-Stone

In front of a small roadside cafe next to a military checkpoint somewhere in the Terai (the lowlands in the south of Nepal), the proprietor stands in front of her god-stone. Embedded in the dusty ground of the parking area where busses come and go all day, with hundreds of feet trampling by, this stone sits clean and red, a sign of God's still presence amidst the bustle, though a sign that is small and easily missed.

Every morning she carefully repaints it and the circle around it with a new coat of red and yellow clay; her daily ritual. Asked why, she replies simply, "It gives me peace."

Amidst the guns, trash, dust and diesel fumes, this little spot of simple order and her attention to this detail seem to me a profound preaching.

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