Lessons from India

My four months in India flew by in a flash.  After I left the Aurovalley ashram I spent a few days back in Rishikesh, walking along the Ganga everyday and reflecting on my journey in India.  I woke up every morning to welcome the sun rising up behind the mountains and every evening I watched the riverside ashrams turn burnt orange as the sun went down.

7AM, April 18, 2011, Rishikesh, India

India made an impression on me that I will not soon forget.  These are some of the things I learned-

  • The art and joy of eating with my hands (or I should say, my right hand)
  • I like all things coconut
  • All Indian children are beautiful
  • Nothing teaches patience and self-control like sitting in silent meditation for an hour with 137 insect bites all over your body (true story)
  • Variety of uses for cow dung
  • Monkeys are not cute- they are mean and ferocious when they want your bag of bananas
  • Eating 2 tsp of ghee (clarified butter) everyday does a body good
  • I am all air (per all 4 ayurvedic doctors I saw in India, I am Vatha dominant)
  • Chanting as meditation
  • I love being a vegetarian
  • A new and deep appreciation for chai- milk tea, masala chai, cardamom chai, tulsi chai, green tea, ginger tea,..
  • I can live on very little but carry a whole lot on my back
  • There are more varieties of lentils and bananas than I ever imagined possible
  • I need to be in India in May for mangoes
  • Ishvarapranidhana
  • I have a very American accent
  • I can comfortably put my feet behind my head
  • There is clean and there is “India clean”
  • Indians nod their heads side to side instead of up and down- I need more practice
  • I may have been Indian in a previous life
  • Jews, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, and Hindus can all live together peacefully
  • I can be a morning person
  • Having a guy sing into your spine feels good (see post here)
  • Like me, there are people from all around the world who leave their jobs, get rid of everything, and just travel
  • Four months in India is not enough
  • Indian mosquitoes love me more than anyone I’ve ever met
  • One in All, All in One, All in All

Thank you, India.  See you next year!

Om, shanthi, shanthi, shanthi.

Ganga in the afternoon

Shri Trayanbakshwar and Swarg Niwas temples

Evening aarti

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6 Responses to Lessons from India

  1. tskraghu says:

    You’ve reached amzing equanimity already, more than most of us living here can claim!

    Welcome back, next year.

  2. Chris, I am so proud of you and share so many of your learning life experiences in India. Except for the ‘putting my feet comfortably behind my head’.. (not even close!):-)

    So here’s to you my friend an Irish Blessing that I want to share with you, because you are so beautiful:

    ‘May the road rise to meet you
    May the wind be ever at your back
    May the sun shine warm upon your face
    and the rains fall soft upon your fields
    And until we meet again
    May God hold you in the palm of His Hand..

    And we will meet again! Amsterdam I hope;-)

    Love,
    Clem

  3. asami says:

    I was SO LATE to read this, but I love it completely. I want to be you someday.

    • dreamgolive says:

      Hi Asami- so enjoyed seeing your photos from Paris. Maybe we can go to India together next time?? I’m sure you’re planning your next trip already. Where to? xoxo, C

  4. Really enjoyed reading this! And I am also an Aurovalley Ashram regular – was there last week!

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