“This body that we occupy, that we have worn like a coat from the moment of our birth – from before birth, even – is still a stranger to us. After all, almost everything we do in our lives is for the well-being of the body: we bathe daily, polish our teeth, groom our hair and fingernails; we work miserable jobs in order to feed and clothe it; we go to great lengths to protect it from pain and violence and harm. And yet the body remains a mystery, a book that we have never read. Sera plays with this irony, toys with it as if it were a puzzle: How, despite our lifelong preoccupation with our bodies, we have never met face-to-face with our kidneys, how we wouldn’t recognize our own liver in a row of livers, how we have never seen our own heart or brain. We know more about the depths of the ocean, are more acquainted with the far corners of outer space than with our own organs and muscles and bones. So perhaps there are no phantom pains after all; perhaps all pain is real; perhaps each long ago blow lives on into eternity in some different permutation and shape; perhaps the body is this hypersensitive, revengeful entity, a ledger book, a warehouse of remembered slights and cruelties.
But if this is true, surely the body also remembers each kindness, each kiss, each act of compassion? Surely this is our salvation, our only hope – that joy and love are also woven into the fabric of the body, into each sinewy muscle, into the core of each pulsating cell?”
― Thrity Umrigar, The Space Between Us
“أتعرف ماهي القوة الأكثر خطورة في هذا العالم يا عزيزي ؟ إنها ليست القنبلة الذرية. إنه الإنسان الحرّ فعلاً. ذلك هو ما عليك الاحتراس منه” ― Thrity Umrigar,