When I was but two years of age, I was in the newspapers and on WSM-TV (1954) for going off of high dives. For over a second, I could fly. But the summer I turned six, some left-behind suntan oil was instrumental in an accident whereby my forehead plummeted four meters into concrete.
I started first grade later that summer, but my hand always cramped after using the pencil for more than a minute. In all the years it was on the report cards, I had the lowest marks for handwriting that they could give. The word “disability” didn't exist then, and I certainly wasn't “crippled”. I was called lazy.
Many things came from this. I couldn't draw with crayons either, so I don't really know colors. For example, in my early fifties, my bike of twelve years was stolen and so I went to the police to file a report. They asked me what kind of bike it was, (Mountain), but when they asked me what color it was, I didn't know and had to go back home to see some pictures (red).
Because I couldn't handwrite, this developed into a miscomprehension and zero-appreciation of literature. So I read math and science books with a passion (and the biographies of great composers). But as far as literature and writing were concerned, I was illiterate.
I had to drop out of school. No one ever recognized the problem/ diability; maybe I was just lazy. It finally made sense when the most recent studies of concussion (NFL-NYTimes) revealed that one of the possible dysfunctions that come with brain injuries is dysgraphia, compromising the ability to handwrite.
Thank God Adi Da Samraj asked me to do the impossible and be The Director of Children's Education in 1984, managing the creation of curricula and literature for eight small schools. He directed me to study the emotional education of the ancients, starting with the tulku tradition of Tibet, where a host of teachers focus on one child believed to be a spirit-master from the past. Fortunately, on the very first day on the job, I was ushered into a room where the latest technology had just arrived: a personal computer. [Insert trumpets here.] Plus, I had an entire editorial department at my service. Three years later, I could functionally write.
On May 23rd, 1987 I had a spiritual experience, a spiritual infusion, and suddenly writing became and remains overwhelmingly pleasurable. I struggle with my lack of foundation and previous illiteracy, and I am told that my writing often clunks with amateurish awkwardness. I pray for your forgiveness and blessing and that the joy I am working to convey compensates sufficiently.
About the Author
Frank Marrero was an instructor at John F. Kennedy University in the San Francisco Bay area where he taught in the Department of Religion and Philosophy. Marrero holds a Master's in the Arts in Teaching and a California teaching credential. He taught in inner-city SF Bay area elementary schools (as well as privileged academies) for a quarter century to noted praise. He is the proud father of two accomplished young adults, Salem, 23, and Ella, 19.
Marrero grew up in Nashville, Tennessee where he regularly played on the steps of the world's only perfect replica of the Parthenon of classical Athens. His mother and father (Sybil and Ramon) were passionate unconventionalists. Well-established in his mid-twenties, Mr. Marrero owned a hardware store and opened a highly successful natural foods restaurant. On his 26th birthday, Frank retired from conventional living and spent decades as a student of world religions and spirituality in the ashram of Avatar Adi Da.
Because he could not handwrite in school, a cacophany of disinterest and inability caused Frank to do poorly in English classes. Fortunately the ability to communicate was not shut out, for Tennessee is known for its story-tellers. Frank's family was a shining example: Every family gathering centered upon telling stories. Frank could hardly write his name but could spin a yarn for hours.
In his mid-30's, in the ashram of Avatar Adi Da, personal computers became available. Technology allowed Frank to convert his story-telling inheritance into writing.
Frank lives in southern Nederlands with his wife Marielle and step-son Sem.
Books by Frank Marrero
Big Philosophy for Little Kids: Writing with Character!
Recollections of Sokrates: An Intimate View of the Sage of Athens
Lincoln Beachey: The Man Who Owned the Sky
The View from Delphi: Rhapsodies of Hellenic Wisdom
Deep Roots: Illuminations in Etymology
The Superpowers of Fasting: Ancient Advice and Medical Miracles
A Monkey's Tale for the Divine Person: Leelas in Praise of Beloved Adi Da Samraj
Core Stories: Rich Myths, Wise Tales, and Biographies of Inspiration
Telling Fish About Water: On the Process of Perception and True Seeing
The Early Life Adventures of Frankie Free Boy: Naive Tales from a Most Ridiculous Life
Nothing Makes Me Happy: Praise for the Wisdom and Person of Adi Da Samraj