The soulrefresher team has left the beautiful Thai island of Koh Phangan for India. We invite our readers to accompany us on this trip. The idea of soulrefresher is to offer simple solutions for finding balance in life. Finding or keeping your balance is even harder in India than in most other countries. Everything is intense and often extreme. It seems that everything is completely out of balance in India and yet still oddly in total balance. If this sounds like a contradiction – welcome to India!
Many people in the West think of India as the holy land of spiritual seekers with it’s ashrams and hundreds of spiritual leaders or gurus of all kinds. When soulrefresher came to India for the first time we also spent some time exploring life in the ashram to experience what it is like but the real “spiritual” experience lies in India’s everyday life with all it’s intensity:
- The smell: people often talk about the special ‘smell of India’ which is a mixture of pleasant incense and spices and smog, cow or dog poo, the smell of urine and much more.
- The colors: Beautiful colorful saris, golden spices, decorative trucks and on the other hand houses that are in urgent need of paint which the next monsoon would wash away anyway.
- The restricted personal space: the masses of people who don’t have any sense of personal space as we have in the West.
- The fact that people use their hand (left hand) in their ‘toilet’ in place of the toilet paper we use in the West and then switch to the right one for eating. (A surprisingly clean method fuelled by large quantities of water and repetitive hand washing).
- The mixture of high technology and a cast systemthat seems to be of another age and many more things that makes a stay in India a challenge everyday.
Some people say that you either love or hate India and there is a lot of truth in that. The sentence may seem radical but it is as radical as the country of India itself. You need to find your own way to deal with the daily challenge or you will lose patience and leave very quickly. For this reason India is a great ‘teacher’. It offers us so many opportunities to learn about ourselves and others and to take this learning home for our ‘everyday life’.
A little example of India:
Have you ever tried to cross a busy Indian road (if you have been to India if not just imagine) with it’s crazy traffic jams, rickshaws,bikes, ox cars, cows and whatever else moves on it ? In the West we know we can just go to the next traffic light and wait for the green signal. This won’t work in India as there are hardly any traffic lights and if there are they usually don’t work. The challenge is to find the right mixture between TRUST (that someone ‘above’ is watching over you and that others will stop or drive around you), CAREFULNESS (always good to be ready to jump aside anyway), TIMING (to wait for the break in the traffic that is not there) and DETERMINATION (I WILL reach the other side whatever might come). And to LET GO, as hoping for Western ways to work in India won’t help us at all!
This can be fun though if you start to let go and open up to the incredible experience of India.
soulrefresher wants to share this journey with you. Meet the everyday challenges with us and the lessons this country has to offer for everyone and always with that touch of humor that makes it so much easier. As always we invite you to comment on our posts and to tell us about your thoughts and own experiences.
And what could be a better start than going on a rickshaw ride? So, fasten your seat belt (oh, there is none…) and get ready…