Late August, 2019 has been tinged with sadness at the news of the passing of a wonderful friend and meditation teacher, Snatak Mathiasson, a longtime colleague who has struggled with the rare affliction ALS for many years. In some mysterious way we are connected to each other, and the departure of those dear to us leaves us with a curious sense of loss. Although there is no death, and although we can celebrate his release from a captive, frail body to some higher realm, we still grieve – our kinship with others consoles and strengthens us, but its absence opens up trapdoors to loss and loneliness, our regrets, the mirror of our own mortality.
‘Do not go gentle into that good night…’ writes the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas. Our brother Snatak was true to this pronouncement and fought for so long to share his wisdom and his love of meditation with others in his failing years. Among his legacies, the a cappella men’s choir Oneness-Dream which he inspired and founded; the Sri Chinmoy meditation group Icelandic Centres and enterprises; the inspiration he brought to so many lives.
And all praise to those who cared for him with such dedication and love – we are full of admiration for the astonishing service of his close friends and outstanding caregivers who faithfully, tirelessly looked after him in his declining years.
In Sri Chinmoy’s play about the life of the Buddha, Prince Siddhartha sings at his final enlightenment:
“No more my heart shall sob or grieve.
My days and nights dissolve in God’s own Light.
Above the toil of life my soul
Is a Bird of Fire winging the Infinite.”
Our salute to our departed brother, free now to wing the infinite.
And Dylan Thomas’s beautiful poem ‘Fern Hill’ ends with a few further apposite lines…
“Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of His means,
Time held me green and dying
Though I sang in my chains like the sea.”
Touching video entitled ‘SEEKER’ by Sanjay Rawal featuring Snatak Mathiasson still practicing his spiritual discipline despite his illness.
This was premiered at the 2017 Reykjavik Film Festival: