Emmanuel (formerly Seth) Aronie, a 1964 graduate of Concord-Carlisle High School is now living in Cherkassy, Ukraine. Aronie attended Amherst College and served in the VISTA program before embracing the Subud spiritual practice and traveling the world before bringing it to Ukraine.
“Subud is a spiritual path I have been following since about January of 1973, when I first came into contact with it,” Aronie said.
Three of his grandparents were Ukrainian who all immigrated around 1900, “though I am the only one of my siblings who speaks Russian, as well as some Ukrainian and Polish.”
He credits Concord with shaping his sense of morality and justice.
“Concord was a real gift for my soul,” he wrote. “Thoreau taught me about independence and integrity. The word for integrity is ‘dostointsvo’ in Russian and possibly in Ukrainian as well. Also, Emerson and others from Concord exemplified Integrity and Intelligence. Add to this, the ‘sense of fairness’ that lives in the folds of Concord’s history, the battle at the Old North Bridge and the unfairness of the situation they were facing with the British. You can surely see the parallels with the current highly unfair, nay, egregious war.”
“That’s why I’m here,” he wrote. “Since an early age, I have had a strong sense of what is fair and what is not, and there’s no question or doubt in this case.
He submitted the following poem.
will avenge those brave souls, stuck in prison cells, while tyrants gloat
and unwittingly plan
their own undoing.
will avenge those brave souls, killed and wounded, while protecting Ukraine,
as others continue
the worthy battle,
until the invader is finally gone.
will describe the unworthy deeds, this invader has done.
he stole and raped and killed
on our land.
These deeds will follow him
and like a merciless assassin,
murder him in his sleep, poison his family
and disturb his every day.
these are true words –
before you really hurt yourself and cannot greet the dawn
or sleep at night,
with a joyful heart,
Wednesday September 28, 2022 Cherkassy, Ukraine