My Return to Blogging and its Blessings

February 21, 2014

My Return to Blogging and its Blessings

Ganga Devotion
I’ve been home six weeks now and my recent journey in India seems like a distant dream.
Truth is, if I had the money I would hop on the next plane and go back for a few months. As this is impossible at the moment, I will share some of my memories and adventures from this last stay, mainly through photos. I know I left you all quite suddenly when I stopped posting unexpectedly, and hope to make it up to both you, and myself. There were powerful reasons for my retreating within during this stay in India and the results of this inner journey were well worth the effort. Especially in the return of creativity which was missing in my life for a long time. You might like to read these posts to get s further understanding, if it interests you. And if not, I’ll be happy to know that you are enjoying my journey, in retrospect, through photos.
http://notinindia2012.wordpress.com/2014/02/20/the-end-of-crippling-shoes/
http://notinindia2012.wordpress.com/2013/05/30/when-the-shoe-doesnt-fit/

Namaste

Jane

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The Journey Home-Beginning the Final Countdown- Dec 15 2013

December 15, 2013

“…your outer life soon reflects your inner peacefulness…”

THE JOURNEY HOME

THE JOURNEY HOME

Every sojourn in India has its own personality. Its own distinct way of effecting my life. And always seems to address the most pressing issues of the moment in the most direct and efficient way. With messages, AHA moments during meditations, insights, even books “sent my way”., has

And of course this journey is no different.

I’ve come as close to a silent, solitary retreat as I feel comfortable with but its impact has been powerful as well as empowering.

I have done little blog posting, have had little interaction with others here (almost 100% less than on a usual sojourn), find the company of others extremely intrusive, have done no Reiki workshops or sessions, and despite the varied and ease of communication these days, have had little contact with friends and loves ones as well. Posting photos easily and on several different networks, has been my biggest form of communication this trip, and that requires very little true interaction. It is definitely a silent form of communication, very rarely requiring words.

But I have been talking to me, to God, to my guides, to the Angels, to the Universe incessantly and many profoundly deep insights about “how” I have been up until now in my life have surfaced. The myths I had been programmed to believe, and DID believe about myself, my perceptions about my abilities and limitations and my interpretations of these ideas…they all seem to finally be collapsing and opening the way for new, better and healthier ways of moving forward in my life.

I have been guided to question, and then understand so much of my previous self-sabotaging behavior and habits-things I accepted totally as “who I am”, without question. This process began slowly before I even left for India, but would have taken much longer to reach the stage it has (if at all) if I had not had these past two months to myself.

The insights are deep, end intimidating. I continue to pray daily for Freedom from Fear and complete Faith as I move forward, determined to make essential changes on both the conscious and subsonscious levels (easier said than done…our subconscious programming from childhood runs so deep). And I pray as well that my sincere intentions, efforts and focus will bring about much needed change in several critical areas of my life.

As I wind down my time here and get ready to joyfully return to my “other” reality, I am determined to succeedin having things “work” differently, and better, than ever before in my life.

….notes from the card chosen in preparation for my return home:

SHANTI:….through breath and intention you can stay centered no matter what’s happening in your life. This inner foundation of peace has a powerful healing effect. Your outer life soon reflects your inner peacefulness…

Namaste

with love light and JOY


Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

December 1, 2012

Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

I was invited to Dr. Arora and Manju’s for dinner together with my friend Michal.  I usually spend quite a lot of time visiting with Manju while I am in Rishikesh.  Daytime visits where we just chat and I watch her in the kitchen-best cooking lessons available-and these visits were missing during this short stay.  But at least I would get to spend the evening with her, and I was excited about going.

We wound up spending the evening in prayers, chanting and singing with all the female members of the communal family dwelling (5 sisters-in-law, a couple of THEIR daughters-in-law, a visiting sister of Dr. Arora from Delhi, and even one baby granddaughter).  I couldn’t have found a more suitable, uplifting and beautiful way to spend my last evening in Rishikesh, or better company.  I have no photos, as it seemed neither appropriate nor necessary at the time, but the wonderful pictures will remain in my mind for a very long time.

It seems over 30 years ago, Dr. Arora’s father decided that every Tuesday there should be an evening of Kirtan (sacred chanting) in the family temple situated in the center of the family dwelling, and the women at the time decided they would be the ones to do it.  And to this day, this is precisely what happens every Tuesday evening.

There is nothing that compares with the power, and empowering energies of the prayers of women.  The chanting was done joyfully, sometimes playfully, sometimes with deep serious mindfulness and devotion, but always directed directly towards the deities.  I felt it on a deep soul level and felt myself being swept away with the power of the connection to God felt in the small room.  Since the chanting is repetitive, and the women took turns leading it, I was very often able to join in. And from my years in India, several of the chants I realized I actually knew the words to myself!  This surprised me and of course brought great joy and approving pleasure to the faces  of the women. And of course, clapping along with everyone else was a no brainer, even for me!!  🙂

The visit afterwards with Manju and the Doctor was thoroughly enjoyable as always, with good conversation, seeing the beautiful wedding album from their eldest son’s wedding last year (the daughter in law of course now living there with them) and of course a superb light dinner.  With soup, idlis, subji, shahi paneer (Manju makes the best in India for sure and she always remembers how much I like it and makes it for me when I come), chutney and of course chapattis with ghee . Dr Arora drove us home, quite late…tired but with full stomachs and happy hearts.

Now having my last breakfast here at the Pundir Restaurant after being treated to a wonderful whole wheat chapatti and homemade ghee when I stopped by Seema’s house earlier.

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The sky is cloudy today for the first time in 6 weeks.  I feel “cloudy” myself. Must be raining somewhere up in the mountains to bring the clouds and colder weather today.

Neelkanth Temple in Distance

Neelkanth Temple in Distance

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And somewhere deep inside of me there is a “rainy” feeling as well.

evening clouds

evening clouds

The day continued quietly, with goodbyes to everyone, always difficult, but even more so after such a short stay, and of course packing up my stuff for storage as well as for taking home.  The sky was beautiful to watch during the day and evening,

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and before heading off to Delhi by taxi, I had my last supper of schnitzel and chips!!  🙂

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The ride on the new highway took less than 5 hours….

Sachin provided me with a pillow so I could sleep in the car on the way.  I dozed on and off…and to my great surprise was in delhi in less than 5 hours!!  New road is good for sure.
Found a nice bench in the departure lounge to lay down on for another hour until they opened the RJ check in counter.  They really hassled me about my carry on- it didn’t fit into the “rack” which measures them.  Finally they called the supervisor, and she allowed me to take it.  What a pain in the ass.  The whole thing took over an hour but luckily I was first on line and when I got to the gate, there was even a free bed to lie down on which I did of course.

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Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

the flight was fine but it seems the AC as not working….it was really hot on the plane.
Good flight to amman but it is over 7 hours going back.  The plane was not full so there was no one next to me which made it easier to  sleep a little with my legs over the handle of the next seat.
1/2 hour delay in Amman but that meant yosi actually got the airport in time to pick me up.  It was nice.
We went and had a nice breakfast in Yehud and then headed home and got stuck in a HAIL STORM!!  Thought the car windows would crack the pieces were so big!
And then later on in the evening, my house was struck directly by lightning and my phone went dead while talking to yosi.  and my cellphone needed to be charged but I had no electricity, so we couldn’t talk.  It was easier talking to him from India!

And now I am home, a week later, writing this last post!!  I will be posting several more photo posts, and then saying goodbye until next year!  Look forward to seeing you all once again then!

Namaste from Herzlia, Israel


Perfect Paneer Parantha – Finally Good Outcome from Panchakarma-Nov 20, 2012–11–28

November 29, 2012

Perfect Paneer Parantha – Finally Good Outcome from Panchakarma-Nov 20, 2012–11–28

I just ate the perfect paneer parantha.  (You can see a perfect aloo parantha Here )

 Would have been the perfect aloo parantha if that had been my choice today but I felt like paneer this time.

VERY thinly rolled, not doughy, not greasy, lots of turmeric and cilantro and the slightest hint of chilly powder.  And lots of paneer.  So different from what most places serve.  Just as good as any I make myself at home.

Got up this morning-my last “real” day here before leaving tomorrow evening for the airport in Delhi..  Got dressed and decided to out for breakfast in Laxman Jhula. Below some of the sites I saw and pretty much the last photos of this short visit to Rishikesh

early morning family outing

 

On the way down to the Ganga

stuff to buy along the way

colorful surprise

 

Stoppedby Dr. Arora to make final arrangements for dinner tonight at his house.  Really excited.  Manju is THE best cook I know personally in India!

And weighed myself.  I could tell from my jeans this moring that the results of the final stage of panchakarma, rejuvenation, are finally clicking in.  My body is finally beginning to get slowly back into balance.

Well, I got on the scale and to my great joy and surprise (as well as the doc’s-he gave me a huge grin and then hugged me), I gained 5 kg in the last 10 days or so.  And it is the first time I’ve managed to put weifht back on since my digestive issues began more than a year ago! Went from 47 to 52 Kg!! My normal weight is around 56 kg so I am on my way.

Despite the setbacks during panchakarma this year, and it being soooo difficult, I see for sure tht slowly the full impact will be felt in the final results.

So I now sit at the Ganga View Restaurant, across Laxman Jhula to the left past the jeep stand.

breakfast view Laxman Jhula

My View While Eating Breakfast just One Week Ago

 

This is a place I usually come to eat often, but will not have the time this year.  They have the best iced coffee, toasted cheese (made with yak cheese), tofu and veggie dishes, and to my surprise, have now added bakery items to their menu.  And of course a wonderful Ganga View to enjoy.

Today I found a lovely spot in the sun to enjoy.

peek at laxman jhula

Had the wonderful paneer parantha and masala chai, and for dessert had a delicious chocolate/banana muffin which was perfect!

morning music

early morning ghat view

lady on crutches navigating ghat with child

 

Final Look Towards Laxman Jhula

 

Heading home to rest and finish packing and be ready to go to the Arora’s for dinner. Hope to write about it in one more post, as well as post several photo posts with shots that didn’t make it into any of the posts from this trip,

Namaste (but now in Israel  🙂   )

Jane


No way, Impossible, Absolutely Cannot Be-Nov 19 2012

November 20, 2012

No way, Impossible, Absolutely Cannot Be-Nov 19 2012

I am packing to go home (and crying) and just before packing them, I decided, just for fun, to open the cards again!!

I am most definitely in SHOCK.

Pulled, for the FOURTH time in a row, the same card: QUIET TIME

Nothing more to say or write.  I have posts and photos which I have not been doing, I have been without internet in my room for about 10 days, and am perfectly content.  But this is part of my forced quiet time.  I will eventually get everything “out there”….

But there is no question that it is not meant to be for at least the near future if I am really meant to enforce this QUIET TIME to rest, meditate and contemplate.

It has been an amazing journey for me….as always, teaching me, guiding me, confronting me with things I perhaps don’t always want to see, but never letting me go home without giving me what it is I need to take back with me.

I am truly blessed and loved.

Namaste from Rishikesh

Jane


Ambivalent Feelings- Hidden Blessings – Nov 5 2012

November 5, 2012

Ambivalent Feelings – Hidden Blessings

Sitting in the new Pundir Restaurant  I mentioned in one of my first posts this year. (Read more about this lovely shop and its lovely owners here: https://janesindiajournals.wordpress.com/2011/02/07/new-expanded-and-improved-pundir-general-store-in-tapovan/

New Restaurant at Pundir Shop

With a view of the Ganga through the trees, gentle morning sun warming me and a cool breeze keeping me comfortable.

I have ordered my toasted brown bread and hot milk and have brought with me from home my spice blend and some jaggary for the milk, and my lovely jam for the buttered toast.

This was actually taken yesterday morning up by my room-but you get the idea!

I am after a water enema, and a long nite of strange dreams. This is a yearly occurrence during the late stages of panchakarma – cleansing on deep levels.  I am quite tired however, and don’t feel like moving, but quite at peace. Sometimes this deep cleansing brings up difficult issues, crying, sadness, pain, anger etc., but this time it is bringing up just deep understandings of the need for new direction, new perspectives,  and new ways of seeing the next phase in my life.  This of course all requires change, and that of course is always difficult.  But the feelings are good ones, even a sense of excitement about what awaits me just around the corner. 

It is a time for complete acceptance, for surrender, with no expectations, in joy, gratitude and freedom from fear!

I am enjoying these last days of my treatments and looking forward to the last 10 days which will remain afterwards as “vacation” time before heading home.

Mixed feelings flood me at this time…wanting to be two places at the same time.

Embracing my last days of “aloneness” together with the joy of knowing I will soon be in the arms of my dear loving partner.

Ambivalence is probably the best word for the way I feel at the moment.

My time here is too short this trip, and yet I don’t believe I could have stayed away from my love for any longer!

Being limited by technical bureaucratic reasons in the amount of time I could stay in India this year (a mere 6 weeks compared to my usual 4-6 months) , something which initially was very difficult for me to accept, has turned out to be just one more blessing from above.

And I thank God and the Universe for once again, as always, taking care of me and my needs in the best possible way!

I am truly blessed

Leaves hanging over entrance to new restaurant, originally strung during puja ceremony before entering new home or business

Namaste from Rishikesh

Jane


Back in Rishikesh October 9-13 2012 Part 1

October 13, 2012

Sunrise over India

Well, I’ve been here now for just three days but it seems like I’ve been here for a couple of weeks at least.  I am now sitting in my room with Tata Photon+ mobile broadband service stick which my friend is lending to me whenever I want it so that I can use internet in my room.  The wifi services here are not working well enough for me to take advantage of them in my room, so this is a real blessing from him to me.  I am listening to lovely Israeli folkdancing music (which I love), and eating Besan Ladoo…which I also love!!  Heaven on earth.

I honestly haven’t felt like writing since I arrived, but have many things written in bits and pieces in my notebook….hope to eventually get them all up here.  And to my great surprise,  I haven’t taken (hardly) any photos either. But I won’t force anything to “happen”.  Just flowing with things as they go.

Sunrise over India from the taxi window

I arrived in Delhi on Wednesday morning at 4:30, with my friend M.  We were picked up by a taxi which I had ordered previously and began our journey to Rishikesh.  And to my great surprise, it took a long time for me to feel like I was actually in India!  Everything has changed so much over the past year and 8 months.  It took hours before my friend had her first traumatic meeting with Indian culture shock.  She was beginning to become complacent, maybe even bored, but India being India…it will finally find its way to you in all of its glorious, and not so glorious ways!!

what a unique idea!

At the airport there was no initial assault on the senses as there used to be.  We could have been in any lovely airport in any country in the world.  The new terminal has nothing to give you the feeling that you are truly back in India.  My friend was pleasantly surprised, and happy, but I was actually disappointed.  .  Pleased of course that progress is moving things forward, India as always moves ahead while standing still….But I wanted desperately to “feel” India on a gut level, in my soul!

We were taken to our taxi, and to my total astonishment, there was AC working!!   And it worked most of the journey to Rishikesh!  Quite unbelievable.  Not only is it obviously more comfortable during a hot drive, but it keeps all of the dirt and dust out of the car!

I was already told that the new highway is open and running between Delhi and Rishikesh, but had no idea what to expect.  Well, the first 150 KM of the 250 KM journey took under 2 hours, Then we stopped for breakfast and toilet and lovely Cheetal Resort.  When we got back in the car, the driver explained that the highway only continues for another 10 KM and then we are back on the old road for the last 90 KM of the trip to Rishikesh.

So, finally, we would “feel” India!!  The highway is approached through a bypass road from the airport, so we didn’t even get to ride through Old Delhi or New Delhi on our way out of the city.  And all of the hussle-bussle was truly missed by me.

Once off the main highway however India finally “hit” with full force.  I was ecstatic, my friend traumatized.    We were back to the horror and magic that is travel on Indian roads.  (You might remember the previous post- Rules of the Road).

The last 90 KM took well over 3 hours of nerve-wracking driving, noise, smells, near death passes, a cacophony of humanity coming to life in the morning hours.  Just wonderful! But my poor friend!  I think you NEVER forget your first drive on Indian roads.  Just like you never forget childbirth (!).  It finds a place of honor in your soul and stays there forever, but hidden enough to allow you to venture onto the roads again for travel in the future!!

I am going to end this post here so that I can finish it up and post it.  And hope to continue either tomorrow or later today with one more catch up post about our first two days here. They have been a blur of sensory, culinary and physical stimulation…exploring, showing my friend the local sights and also how to find her own way around, eating wonderful food, enjoying the perfect weather, see all my wonderful friends again and just feeling peaceful and tranquil and back home after much too long.

Namaste

Jane


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