Time Doesn’t Heal… Only Forgiveness Does.

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As published in the Japanese magazine BEEAST

I stood in front of my bedroom door with probably more excitement than my 2 little furry boys MacKaye and Leonard, who were crying and barking for me to quickly open up. That pure loving moment is what has kept me coming back home on a regular basis in the year that has gone by, separating me from actually being able to say: “Alright, I’m back home.” I never thought the last year would go as it did, even if I didn’t have any plans. Days became weeks. Weeks turned into months. And without further notice, I found myself wondering if I would ever come back at all, which I believe wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for writing the book “A Journey Beyond Ourselves”. I was that emotionally damaged, but realized I wasn’t that definitely broken after all. You can run as far and as long as you want, for all the good or wrong reasons. Time doesn’t heal… Only forgiveness does.  

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It was somehow special for me to be back in the studio last night, after what felt like an eternity. It was special to stand in a place with so much history, with so much of our tears, laughter, mourning dreams and exulting success. I didn’t expect the place to be anything else. Again, it’s what we decide to make out of all those moments that determines their nature and therefore their emotional implication. Last night, without any other reason than feeling it, all through the freedom by which I live my life now, I was even able to share with the others. I used to keep any personal emotion to myself, so this reminded me how something as simple as being in the same place as the others had never been quite that simple for me before. Sharing some song ideas and revealing a little of the emotions that came with them was good to me… it was simple.

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Some of the things I shared were about the fact that, in the midst of the world’s present chaos and its everlasting new grieving morning after, I felt it was time for me to give life to the words of compassion, grace and mercy I kept on writing about in order to purge the intolerance and fatalism that roams around, following every unbearable and crushing act of revolting terror we are either part of, may it be as victims of anger or powerless survivors, or disconnected from, may it be to protect ourselves from hate or as an acknowledged denial to live without fear, whatever it may be or not. As I told a dear friend who asked me to write a text for an important newspaper after a recent act of abominable and revolting horror, I wasn’t able, as shameful and disheartened as it may sound, to keep on writing eulogies anymore.

Distance may have a way to slowly numb the pain, to drift you away from sorrows, but too often, the price to pay for such temporary remedy becomes the senseless sensation of what you used to care so much about, of the people you so dearly loved but who keep on fading with every passing day. Indifference is the window by which we look at the seasons turning into another lukewarm silence and emotional detachment.

Maybe I desperately needed to see and hear glimpses of the beauties that truly lie within love, hope and faith before they could disappear in the nature of time and its empathetic cynicism, before the faithful and devoted tide of life’s worries and other concerns related to our abiding desire for comfort could ever wear down the brightness of any of those beauties. Every burden is an open invitation to free ourselves from the darknesses it holds and to welcome a brand new realm of lights. That’s one of the things I’ve learned and come to experience while living in the radiant city of Tangier.

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It’s not so much as where you belong as how honestly willing to abandon yourself to its purpose that ultimately defines your true degree of commitment. At the end of the day, neither the faith you have in any communal journey endeavours nor the love you may have (or might want to believe you have) for the people sharing the same emotional path as you, have anything to do with anything we keep on confessing in order to convince ourselves, more than reassure others, of the honesty of our engagement to it all. 

And the reality remains that it all goes back to what you really want, as secretly wonderful or horribly unshakable as it might be. It’s ultimately always about yourself until you decide otherwise. That’s when the distance, may it be emotional or physical, totally disappears. Otherwise, it’s only another promise meant to be broken or another deception designed to keep on hiding deep within the lies that pave the way to every upcoming rupture and human tragedy that comes with it. 

Therefore, coming back home to share it all with the band members, and with all of you dear ones, turned any of the disrupted distance that might have been between me and the others into a greater blessing. None of us have to do anything in order to cover the distance there was way before I decided to take some time by myself to get some rest for my body and to find well-needed peace for my heart, nor do we have to pretend and act as if that 12-month fracture never happened. Again, it all goes back to the invitation to free ourselves from any of the burdens we collected over the years and to offering each other the most precious gift of all, which is forgiveness, and building upon that honest foundation once again… together.

So, I woke up this morning with my head full of dazzling and colorful imageries, with my heart filled with blooming whispers and secret longings to be shared. And for as long as I can remember, it never actually felt that good to me. It’s quite intriguing where it will lead us, now that our communal “Between Illness and Migration” season opened the way to the uplifting state of having a plenitude of new wonders to discover and redefine, all laid out at every step we will be willing to take our feet to… An upcoming chapter to this chaotic, but nonetheless ours, unique and ongoing journey beyond ourselves.


Love always,
Alex

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PS: MacKaye and Leonard were indeed utterly excited to see me, but it looks like they were also very happy with all the gifts and treats I brought back. And judging by the fact that Sef’s sonic effects footboard almost tripled in size since I last worked in the studio… Well, boys will be boys, regardless of how much fur they might have…! That’s for sure! 😉

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