Creating something makes me come alive. For me, art comes in many forms and shapes and whenever I create something with my hands be it a bookmark, a mandala, a floor rangoli, or a simple meal; it makes my heart sing! To be able to create and offer is a blessing and a joy. There was a time when I was attached to whatever I created, but ever since I met Kanti Kaka, I've practicing not to put my name on anything and letting go. It's been many years and it still a work in progress :-)
There are actually two events that have been a turning point in my life. The first was when I started volunteering at Seva Cafe back in 2012. The first time that I picked up a ladle to stir the curry, Bhaskar bhai told me to take a moment and check in with myself if I'm holding any negative emotion. That was the day I learned that everything we create is so much more than it's ingredients. That my happiness or my anger will directly go into the food that I'm cooking or the art I'm making.The second was my first Awakin circle in 2013. I remember my first circle when I could not sit still for even 15 minutes and every time when I opened my eyes, I would see Jignasha sitting in stillness. And I remember wanting that stillness, that calm.Week after week, I would return to the circles. Awakin circles have and continue to change me beyond words. Everything I am today is a ripple of being able to sit in stillness.
After the floods in Uttarakhand in June 2013, I had gone to the mountains with Pratyush and Joseph ji. For almost 3 months we walked from one village to another, stopping wherever we were called to serve and serving in which ever capacity we could. During one such walk from one village to another, we stopped for a break on the banks of Ganga. For most part of those 3 months, we lived on the kindness of strangers but it was mostly in ashrams, or schools, or organizations. But this one day, an old lady who lived in a small hut on the banks of Ganga called us out. She asked us if we've had lunch. We looked at her hut with one mat and a small stove on a corner. My thinking mind was all very careful of not imposing on her, or not taking anything but maybe we could offer her something. But I was so wrong!She made tea for us, shared her biscuits with us and then the most beautiful gift of sharing her journey with us. How since last 40 years she was living in that hut waiting for Ganga to call her and how Ganga has been feeding her every day. She held my hands and I had tears rolling down. In our modern lives we build so many walls around us, but here she was teaching me to let go of my inhibitions, to welcome everyone inside and share my biscuit with all because Ganga is there to feed me the next day! It's been 5 years, I don't know if she is still there, but her lesson of undeterred faith will always be with me.
To learn how to swim :D
"Sometimes our light goes outbut is blown again into an instant flameby an encounter with another human being"