My Trip To India (Part 1)
As some of you might know, I had the privilege of traveling to the colorful planet of India last month (yes, I do consider it to be a different planet). And let me tell you, it was not what I expected.
There were far more cows on the road than what I had been told.
India is the first country I have been to where I felt an energetic personality in the land. If you are not in tune with that energy, or if you have never tasted it before, you will probably get a shock. For it is not gentle when it comes to introducing itself. And it doesn’t hide, not one bit. Nothing in India hides. Imagine everything you fear and love expressing itself at the same time, spread out for you to see. Imagine everything you adore and detest about the world staring at you, unwilling to look away, even after you have begged it to. That is India. On one side of you, there is a crippled man, waiting for his time to die, curled up in a torn blanket. On the other side of you, there is a stranger inviting you in for a free meal and a cup of chai.
Such is the nature of an incomprehensibly beautiful land.
If you are sensitive to energy and unable to control the way you respond to it, India might be the very place you need to stay away from. But if you know how to work with a lot of energy, and if you know how to surrender into it, India is the very place you need to be. That is why it is difficult for me to recommend India to everyone I meet. For some people, it is a Holy land where some of the greatest saints and sages have walked. They can actually feel that the moment they enter India. Because it operates on such an intuitive level, the intuitive people are able to pick up on that and merge into it. For others, it is a third world country, ruled by poverty and uncleanliness.
It all just depends on what your state of consciousness is like.
When I first landed in India, I arrived in a pool of my own sweat. And I was running through Delhi airport in that sweat, hoping to catch my next flight to Dehradun. It didn’t help that the night before I slept 3 hours. I looked like the equivalent of a hipster-zombie. There I was, with my backpack on, half-asleep, attempting to tie up my man-bun. This was particularly embarrassing for me at the time, but it seemed like the locals were used to it. And they were incredibly helpful. Even after forgetting to collect my bag and clear customs, I was able to catch my next flight, which I was already so late for. That was my first introduction to the way local Indians operate.
They are fiery and compassionate experts at finding a way. As they say in India, Sub Kuch Milega! Everything is Possible!
If you have read this far in my blog, first of all, thank you. Second of all, you might be wondering why I decided to go to India in the first place. Before I go on to describe the rest of my trip there, I think it is important for me to address that.
I went to India because my soul felt called to the land. After a few mystical experiences in Boulder, Colorado that were oddly aligned with the Indian tradition, I knew I had to dig my feet in its soil.
(by the way, anyone who has told you that the nature of a mystical experience depends on what culture you were raised in doesn’t know what they are talking about. I was brought up as a Mormon and turned into an atheist; I knew next to nothing about Indian spirituality)
I was also compelled to visit India because of an encounter I had with the teachings of Neem Karoli Baba, a saint who lived in India for who-knows-how-long. After reading his words, which felt oddly familiar, my heart felt a natural attraction to the land. Its as simple as that. If my soul didn’t feel called, I wouldn’t have gone. And I probably would have hated it. But when I landed in India, I wept. It felt like I had returned home.