Monday, February 09, 2015

Book review of KM Kaung's Band of Flesh by Kauk Site Ma--

Informal book review of KM Kaung's story Band of Flesh from Kauk Site Ma--link to buy the book is below--


'First of all, I love the story chosen with a name “A Band of Flesh”. 

I had read about these conjoined [Siamese] twins born to parents in about the early 1950s. I think it appeared in one of those old newspapers, which I saw in my father's wooden chest. 

Honestly, I forgot the names but they were quite famous as the first Siamese Twins in the world. I think one had 10 children, and another a dozen kids???

Wonderful, how they could  live as able-bodied human beings.

I see, it is a real suffering, that happens from the accident of birth … where the babies are connected to a single umbilical cord (sic)  (In the womb?).

They do not have privacy to bathe, eat, excrete…everything, and even when they get married (in some cases they are one male and the other female).

If I were they I would have felt like Ying.

Question is should they be separated to survive?

A fundamental problem I think is that most parents may not agree to separate their twins.
They may feel differently in ways than we thought. Then, from human rights view… those human-beings - is it right to refuse such kind of separating? Or is it to accept it as a good medical treatment?

(Editor--in some cases they cannot be separated.)

What about killing? (Euthanasia)

Doctors have to take oath that they should not take life (of babies in the womb)…….

(Editor--In USA abortions on request are legal)

Another thing flashes in my mind, thinking what if one of those twins died of say disease? Normally another would have died of fright or like what you have said about Yang and Ying in your story. This is natural because the survived twin (s/he) is attached to another dead twin. It’s so complicated…and hard to say when their connection is complex and would they have survived from being parted or not? 

There were a few cases (such as Ma Nan Soe and Ma Nan San in Burma) and many around the world today where (only) one can survive after separation.

It's an unhappy ending..  where the thin one tried  to escape her suffering  by taking pills that put her and her family into trouble. Buddhists believe the one should not commit suicide..because that person will suffer the same committing suicide for 500 times, and so one goes for 500 endless lives (a hpan nga-yar, nga gabar in Burmese)...endless life of Samsara.

So killing oneself is the same as killing another living being.

Nice reading.

Kauk Site Ma

Editor--lightly edited for grammar only.

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