The Top Ten Things I Love About India Right Now

 

Taking a page from Jennifer’s blog (jennifersinor.wordpress.com — “One Hundred Days in India”), here is my Top Ten List of the Things I Love About India, Right Now.

1.  Staying in Dharamsala, home of the Dalai Lama, and its precipitous landscape under snowy Himalayan peaks.IMG_1567

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2.  The Colors.  Unbelievable birds (every bird is new); dump trucks decorated with gods and goddesses, sacred symbols; painted houses, walls, and alleyways; painted  horns of cows; colored lights strung over stores, stalls, hotels, homes; gold-and-silver-embroidered purple, rose, and indigo saris; maroon monks’ robes; taliks–those spots of color or jewels on women’s foreheads; shrines dotting mountain-sides; flowers everywhere; crazy paisley patterns on clothes; wonderful young westerners in outlandish “spiritual” costumes—everyone gets to play dress-up; magnificent tankas (Buddhist wall hangings); snowy peaks above the foothills.

3.  My boys getting their picture taken with His Holiness, the Dalai Lama.Boys with HH

4.  Hiking up to the temple every morning, walking the temple trail, doing 108 prostrations, before going in to meditate before giant statues of the Buddha, Padmasambhava, Avalokiteshvara.Mother and daughter

5.  Our family being “marooned” in India, as Jennifer said, all together all the time, cut off from our daily life back at home.

6.  Hiking together, then going to a café for a treat or brunch with a real cappuccino—as for example to the nearby town of Dharamkhot, a quiet town hung on the mountain side with only foot traffic.   Much like Spain.IMG_1489IMG_1737

7.  Deepening my spiritual practice. Meditating two or three times a day, doing 108 prostrations. Going to a class on “The Buddha Nature” at the Institute for Buddhist Dialectics at the Dalai Lama’s Temple.

8.  Falling in love with the Tibetan people, their smiles, the monks and nuns, the bright-eyed very old and wrinkled women. Deepening my love of the Indian people, their sweetness, (though lately I am pissed-off at their crazy littering).IMG_1784

9.  The strange, deep feeling of being home here.

10.  Seeing Jennifer, Aidan, and Kellen enriched by being here. Hoping they will continue to experience it this way.IMG_1571 IMG_1576 IMG_1570 IMG_1575 yd_06 IMG_1484

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