Sitting in an internet cafe in the town of Bir, Himachal Pradesh and wondering what I can blog about in 5 minutes before heading back to the monastery for dinner. We are in our last few days of InSPIRE and I am in utter disbelief. These 5 weeks have gone by so fast yet so slow – I guess that’s what happens when you wake up before 7am every morning.Β  I’ll write more about the whole experience when I get home but let me tell you a little bit about what we have been doing here. We came here to take part in a workshop called “Jeevan Vidya” – it’s basically an approach to life and existence. It was honestly really difficult to going from 4 whirlwind weeks to 7 days of mostly sitting and listening. I had a hard time getting into the subject matter because it was so vague and so dense but I think in retrospect I did learn from it. It made me question what I consider “reality” and really made me think about my own assumptions and pre-conditioning as a result of society, status, family, etc. So we did that for about 7 days and now we are doing some closing and reflection activities.

I can’t stop talking about how incredibly beautiful this place is. We are in the foothills of the Himalayas – about 5000 ft. up and the weather is perfect (even when it rains unexpectedly). One morning a few of us woke up at 4:30am to hike up to these nearby waterfalls. It was such an adventure – 2 dogs from the town followed us and basically served as our guides, we hiked through a leech infested area (but not before de-briefing about them first) and ended up with harmless but digusting bites all over us, we bathed in a freezing cold stream with no regard for “decency” (….well….there was nobody around so that made it easier), we experienced a slice of the twilight zone when we stuck our heads into a tiny waterfall and were able to open our eyes and see through the tunnel that was created, and we hiked back home in the POURING rain and waded through the newly flooded path that we had come on. It was, in one word, AMAZING. If you haven’t realized yet, that is my favorite descriptive word and I am in dire need of synonoms. πŸ™‚

We have also been doing some general reflection, program overview, and planning for our closing ceremonies in Delhi.

I am feeling and thinking so much and I’m really excited about coming home and implementing some changes in my life. Small changes, yes. But important ones. I’ve finally realized that change really does start with you and me. I threw that phrase around before thinking that I believed it but I guess I didn’t believe it 100%. It is sometimes really discouraging to stand up for something you believe in and feel like it’s futile because you are only one person and what does that really mean in the grand scheme of things? But really, it’s basic math. πŸ™‚ ONE > ZERO. And that makes it wothwhile.

Enough for now. Time to walk back up to the monastery for dinner (the food there is delicious so I’m eager to go πŸ™‚ )

Love to all.

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5 Comments to “”

  1. I think, you are having a wonderful time. It’s kind of sad that it is going to end soon. Anyway, the memories will be with you for a long long time. On your next trip, make plans to visit Dharamshala and maybe, the Dalailama. At the end of the trip, I hope you can summarize all your experiences in the form of video/photo format on a DVD (like you did for your “Semester at Sea” experience. See you soon!!

  2. Sounds amazing! Cant wait to hear more about it when you return!
    ~Sala

  3. Apu
    I wish I was with you. Hope you are comingback!!!! We missed you at the parties but I think you are excused for having a wonderful fantastico time. I am sure you will be a changed person now.

    Love

    Kaushik

  4. I look forward to seeing some cool pics from the trip! Hopefully I can hear about your trip in person now that I’m back on the east coast. Enjoy the tail end of your time there!

  5. Aparna lacking decency?? :o0 I find that hard to believe ;o) The hike sounds amazing, and I wish I had been there to experience it too! Can’t wait to see your pics :o) and of course YOU!

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