Recently, I was asked by the Australian government to participate in Australia Unlimited’s new Australia Day interview series, highlighting Australians who are making a difference in India.
There’s a good reason why I became a writer and not an actor.
Although I can be deceptively outgoing and sociable, at my core I’m an introvert who dislikes large groups and being the centre of attention. Writing was the ideal way to express myself and remain out of the spotlight.
A long time ago, legend has it that Baiga ancestors were created by God from the womb of Mother Earth. They became the keepers of the world. And, after God had finished creating the world, he offered to make them king.
When I moved to Mumbai in 2008, I started a blog about my life in India married to an Indian guy. At the time, there weren’t many blogs like mine. It was disappointing, as I was going through a huge transition and wanted to read about the experiences of people in similar situations. I documented my thoughts and life in detail (the good, the bad, and the ugly!), in the hope of making sense of everything and helping others.
As I approach 10 years of living in India, I’ve been reflecting on my journey and what it’s entailed. Starting off in Kolkata and ending in Mumbai, it’s been a roller coaster of extraordinary experiences, discovery and self-discovery, frustration, transformation, and ultimately success. Here are some of the important things I’ve learned along the way.
There’s a saying amongst spiritual seekers that it’s grace alone that brings you to Tiruvannamalai and Mount Arunachala, and when the mountain calls you, you must go.
As the sun was setting, with monks beside me, I finally sat down to meditate. As I’ve previously studied Vipassana meditation, it was an experience that I was very much looking forward to. The overhead tree branches were alive with bird chatter, while gentle chanting in the background and the waft of incense helped lull me into quiet contemplation.
It was nearly 7 p.m. Darkness had almost completed its descent. I unsteadily stood on the lower step of the main ghat, Hari-ki-Pauri, at Haridwar with the holy water lapping at my feet. Apparently, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva had also once stood there, leaving their footprints behind.