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Old 03-26-2010, 04:47 AM
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Default Why We Love Neytiri-Part VI-b

Why We Love Neytiri-Part VI-b

Hope Springs Eternal



Neytiri

According to Greek mythology, Pandora, the first woman, opened a box (or more accurately a jar or urn) that unleashed all the evils of the world. She did so from curiosity, not malice, yet the damage was done nonetheless. It’s interesting that the moon Neytiri was born on was named Pandora by the Terrans. And according to Colonel Quaritch’s description of what existed outside the walls of the human Compound, it was such a hostile, inhospitable environment that it was aptly named.

But the last thing that was left in the urn Pandora opened was hope. For me, Neytiri symbolizes the first true woman, and embodies that underlying quality of hope. She demonstrated this time and again with Jake as her attitude toward him changed from one filled with mistrust, resentment, and frustration to one teeming with pride, joy, laughter—and even love. This was only possible because of her undying quality of hope.

The span of time that occurred between the sequence of events in which Mo’at questioned Jake and sampled his blood, to the moment she announced that Neytiri would teach him the ways of the Na’vi always seemed far too brief and abrupt to me. However, I now believe that this decision was reached partly in an attempt by Mo’at to help her daughter heal the lingering wounds suffered when Sylwanin was killed. She had gotten the measure of Jake, and seen that his heart was good. And she purposely paired the two of them up—not only so the Clan could gain additional knowledge from a warrior of the Sky People—but also as a possible way to help Neytiri complete the final stage of her healing and move into a state of wholeness.

During the next few months, that final healing took place, and Neytiri’s willingness to let hope spring forth and override the painful experiences and attitudes from the past was shown at Utral Aymokriyä, the Tree of Voices, when she fully opened her heart to Jake and freely gave herself to him as his mate for life.

This quality of hope was demonstrated perhaps even more powerfully during the events surrounding the destruction of Hometree. Jake’s duplicity was revealed and she understandably felt used and betrayed. Her home was destroyed by the same race that gave rise to Jake; and her revered father, leader of the Clan, became a casualty of that destruction. Many others were killed or injured as well. Again, Neytiri was devastated, probably on a scale equal to the cataclysmic upheaval her life went through when she saw Sylwanin murdered before her eyes.

Yet amid this soul-wrenching pain, Neytiri maintained her perennial roots—thought of the Clan before herself—and found the inner strength necessary to help her people survive. She no doubt spent most of her time helping the wounded, and consoling those who felt the future of the Omaticaya—and their world—was now filled only with bleakness and despair. By her works, her example, and the sheer force of her indomitable spirit she gave them all—young and old—hope.

When Jake returned, she had already forgiven him; had already moved forward with her life. She was the perennial flower already bursting forth and blossoming once again. And as I mentioned previously, it didn’t matter that Jake returned as Toruk Makto; it mattered that he returned. He could have arrived on a flock of stingbats lashed together, and it would not have mattered to her.

The Hope Diamond, housed in the Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., is one of the most beautiful gems in the world—and at 45.52 carats, is one of the largest at well. I’ve been fortunate enough to see this magnificent, multi-faceted jewel up close on 3 separate occasions, and it is stunning. But a large part of its appeal for me is its color—a rare and beautiful deep Na’vi blue.

We love Neytiri because she has an eternal flame of goodness and optimism within her that can never be extinguished, even when the most challenging and excruciating circumstances are thrown her way. She is our beautiful gem; our own beautiful blue, multi-faceted Hope Diamond.

After Sylwanin’s tragic death, Neytiri must have walked a fine line between terror and wonder, and all the dark and lonely spaces in between. Here she could have remained, never fully actualized as the astounding person we have come to know and love. But in time she took that final leap of faith—a step Tsu’tey, with all his strength and determination, could not. She finally let go of all her anger, and fear, and sorrow—and embraced hope.

Nikos Kazantzakis, author of such amazing books as Zorba the Greek, The Saviors of God, and The Last Temptation of Christ said in one of his books:

“What is happiness? To know all sorrows. What is light? To gaze, with undimmed eyes, on all darknesses.”

Because of the love and inspiration Neytiri gained from Sylwanin—and from the events set into motion by her beloved sister’s death—she was able to find the strength within herself to know those sorrows; to gaze upon those darknesses. And throughout her monumental journey, she was able do this because she never lost sight of that eternal beacon of hope.

And to Sylwanin I would say, “You were a shining example of goodness and hope for your sister. You set her feet upon the proper path. You did not fail your sister that fateful day; your death did have meaning. Because of you, Neytiri was in time able to transcend her anger and sorrow, and embrace that shining quality of hope. And in so doing she ennobled us all. And now she has moved beyond the confines of the 3-D theater, and stepped into our hearts and minds—and into legend.”
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Neytiri Love Poems (by me!)

The 'Why We Love Neytiri' commentaries
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