According to Japanese Law you can only have one nationality. At the age of 20 you have to choose if you want to remain a Japanese citizen, or renounce this privilege for another country. I did choose the Japanese citizenship when I was living in Australia in my early 20’s ~ that is another story.
I did my training in the School of Storytelling at Emerson College in Sussex in the year 2000. I had the immense joy of learning from Sue Hollingsworth and Ashley Ramsden, with my cohort of the year. We recited the poetry of Rumi and Hafiz, and I felt my soul calling me back home. By then I knew that the Iranian authorities would not let me travel to Iran unless I obtained an Iranian passport, for the obvious reasons of control and domination over the citizens, whom they want to claim are ‘theirs.’ At last my longing overcame the walls of national policies. I got my Iranian passport and journeyed back home, entering Iran on foot at Maku border crossing, on the Christmas Eve of the year 2000, after 17 years of being apart.
I travelled over Eastern Turkey and Northwest of Iran, seeing Mount Ararat standing proud in the distance. Christmas Eve was spent in Maku, the border town, being shocked by the sexual harassment of the hotel staff. The next day I headed to Rasht, my hometown, just south of the Caspian Sea. I went straight to see my grandmother. What a joy it was to be with her again!
What I encountered on that journey shaped my life and oriented my purpose to this day. But that is another story. What I want to tell you today, really, is a dream I recently had. A significant dream about myself, and in reflection the state of our world, a situation where millions of people are placed in, due to governmental national policies.
In my 50th year, I had the special joy of being asked to marry my beloved partner, Alan. In preparation to register our marriage, I had to call the Japanese Consulate in Edinburgh. The clerk on the other side of the phone line could tell that obviously I was not a native speaker of Japanese. Then she decided to confront me and asked if Japanese was the only nationality I have. I froze for a moment. I did not have the space on the phone to explain my situation. I knew I had to give her an answer that would satisfy her, so I said ‘yes.’ And she helped me with the paper work I needed for my marriage.
That night I had this dream : my aunts from Japan and my mother are standing next to me. I am looking at this disturbing picture where from the top of skull to the bottom of my vertebrae there is a wide open wound. My brain is split into two, as is the rest of my body, right down my spine. I look into the mirror and see another scar on top of my head.
I woke up with a sense of wow! this is significant. That day I wrote to my immigration attorney. I have an immigration attorney because I’ve been banned from the US for life. To change that status I have been working with this dear friend who is also my attorney, but this is another story. ‘I want to tell you my dream,’ I told him. ‘Are you available to hear me?’ ‘Yes,’ he said. He also told me that he is in South America, helping thousands of refugees in the Venezuelan Exodus to Columbia and Ecuador, ‘a complete mess’ he said.
So I told him my dream. I also shared my interpretation of it.
- ‘I think my dream is showing me my legal status. And this state is not just mine but is also showing how millions of people are split up because of national policies.’
- ‘I think you hit the nail on the head’ he said.
So my quest to live a wholesome and happy life appears to be intimately connected to realising a state of wholeness between nations. All the nations of the world, to legally recognising their bigger human family, integrating us, rather than segregating us from each other. With this wish I am preparing for a greater union in a few weeks with my beloved husband-to-be in a wild and beautiful landscape where we will confirm our truth, our love for one another. We will exchange our vows of belonging, we belong to each other, and we belong to the earth, to one world, one planet.