Welcome at the blog of Dini Commandeur. I've written quite a lot of columns for various magazines. I also write short stories every now and then. These columns and stories are available for everybody at this blog. I'll release new columns and stories periodically.


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column September 2006 Friday 15 September 2006 The cats are spread out on the sofa, in a deep sleep and totally relaxed..  It would almost make you jealous - what a life!  Water and chow always ready, they’ve got the run of the house, are free to go outside, and they get lots of attention.  You’d almost wish that in your next life you would return as a cat.

Well, I don’t know if I want to believe in next lives, but sometimes I come across that topic.  One of my Buddhist pen pals wrote about it not too long ago.  And the natural healer I talked to recently also mentioned something about multiple lives.  He said that we all have a destiny, a mission in this life that we need to accomplish in order to enter a “higher level”.  For example, if it were up to him he would prefer to live like a recluse somewhere in a cabin in the woods.  He probably would be very happy there, but his destiny in this life is to help people and to try and make them better.  “And if I would not fulfill that mission I would definitely return in a next life to make that happen,” he said.  My youngest sister spoke a reincarnation expert recently who had something interesting to say.  Firstly, we all “know” one another from a former life, but as different people.  Secondly, the reincarnation expert told her that we could come back in our next life as a member of the opposite sex.  “Objection,” I immediately cried out, because it doesn’t appeal to me to return as a man and my sister wasn’t happy with that prospect either.  Men are fun, but in general women are usually more interesting.  I know several women who actively partake in life; they are busy with (volunteer) work and spend their free time on their own personal development.  In the meantime, their men do odd jobs around the house or lounge around on the sofa with a beer, watching football.  Nothing wrong with that.  To the contrary, it is almost covetous how satisfied those guys are with their lives.  They have what they want and the fact that their women cannot enter a deep conversation with them is of no real concern.  Then we have the women.  Beside our (volunteer) work and raising kids we are busy developing ourselves in different areas, spiritually as well.  And so we spend hours on the phone with our women friends and we chat, listen, laugh, and never finish talking.  Oh, it’s wonderful to be a woman.  But, to be honest, not everything about womanhood is fun.  Take those physical inconveniences that plague us and, not to forget, the never-ending battle against the surplus pounds. Weight is also much less of a problem to men and they don’t take it that seriously.  They also don’t get too bothered by many other aspects in life. For example, a fight with friends or family.  They take those things a lot easier than we women do and they don’t brood about them very long either.  Now that I really think about it, perhaps it’s not that bad an idea to return as a man in a next life for once.  But it’s got to be a man with power and a conscience.  One who changes the world.  One who stops the weapon industry, helps to put an end to poverty in the world, and works against the suppression of women.  A man who makes sure that every child is faring well and that human rights are respected.  That’s the kind of man I’d like to be.  A man with power and muscle, real muscle, and a warm heart.  Only once I’d like to be a man.  After that, it won’t be necessary to come back as a man in a next life anymore, because then there will be women in power who could work towards a better world, since that’s something I would have arranged for during the time I had been boss.  Yes, to return as a man just once to try and create a better world.  Sweet, sweet dream. 

You either believe in reincarnation or you don’t.  But if it really exists I hope, after that one time as a man, to return as a woman once again.  With all the blessings of womanhood but without the physical inconveniences please.  Or would I prefer to return as a cat after all?  I look at my cats as they are sleeping on the sofa.  They have no worries about tomorrow, no fears of terrorist attacks and global climate change.  However, if we do have a mission in life, what then is the mission of the cats?  And dogs for that matter?  Do animals have a mission in life, too?  The cats awake and stretch themselves.  I pet them and receive head rubs.  Then I know what their mission is in life; dogs and cats are good for your health and well-being.  When you pet them your blood pressure decreases.  They melt your heart and make you smile.  They give love and feelings of satisfaction.  Isn’t that a beautiful mission in life?  And the animals don’t get too worried about their next lives.  They don’t fret about the shape they might take when they come back.  They are right.  A possible next life, if such does exist, is not yet of importance.  As the Dutch saying goes, whomever lives then, worries then.  In the meantime, I’ll busy myself figuring out exactly what my mission is in the here and now.

 Text: Dini Commandeur, Translation: Maria O’Neill


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