• Iris Ruff

To my friend Marianna

Today is exactly one week ago that my friend Marianna passed away. This is in remembrance of one of the purest souls I knew. You were a couple of years older than me and it’s heart-breaking that you left this earth so soon. In a spiritual sense I do believe you attained the highest level of being, you were truly connected to everything and everyone around you, committed to peace, passionate about healing, children & nature, you saw the good in everything and you lived selflessly. And so maybe it really was time for you to go to a better place. You left your marks by touching a lot of hearts and by inspiring those around you.

We went to the same high school, but during that period we didn’t really know each other, I just knew your name and how you looked like. It wasn’t until beginning of 2015 that I accidentally stumbled upon your Facebook account and saw you together with your husband, which I immediately found you two so striking and beautiful together. You guys really radiated true love, grace and unity. I viewed all the great posts you shared passionately with peace, coexistence and spirituality being the main topics. Those were exactly the things I was interested in as well. In that period I didn’t really know people who were in to these things (nowadays seems like everyone is;)) and I knew we would be able to connect. I decided to send you a message and we became friends since then.

At that time I started working parttime with a group of refugees in Amsterdam. You were passionate about helping them as well and started to volunteer in your free time. I remember you organised a lot, bringing tons of food and clothes whenever you could. We communicated quite often about all the possible ways that you could offer them help. And it was just beautiful to see how much you cared.

You were the only person that I knew (from the Dutch Jewish community) that had an openly more liberal-left point of view towards the Israeli-Palestinian political situation and that was something I appreciated a lot. You were brave and just engaged in those things that you thought were righteous. I always felt that way as well, but wasn’t really able to find a way to talk/share this with others. You were committed to peace and showed it to world, and in a sense it inspired me for the choice I made to go to Israel a couple of years ago. The idea actually came after I did an ayahuasca ceremony. I remember I shared my experiences with you of that ‘inner journey’ and told you that I felt I wanted to do something in Israel. Not only because I wanted to research my roots and had the ambition to develop myself professionally, but also to learn more about the political situation and to offer help wherever it was possible. I didn’t really have a plan, but during my stay that urge became stronger, especially cause of the tense political situation at that time and I just felt I had to do something. You had many friends over there that were involved in peace initiatives and you introduced me/shared those lovely contacts with me right away. It was beautiful to see how you cheered for my choice to go work in a school that it's mission is working towards peace, more inclusivity and a just society.

You had so many qualities and one of them was that you easily made friends all over the world. At one point you invited me in to this wonderful group with great people where we were able to share our experiences (spiritual) and talk about our dreams and ambitions. A group I truly felt supported and loved in, and I’m still very grateful for that invitation. I could go on, but for now I just want to thank you for being who you were. I will always remember you, your light and keep that in my heart.

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