It was supposed to be me-weekend, just for me, myself and I.
After at least two weeks of terrible homesickness, many soothing conversations, on Thursday night I finally managed to fall in love with India again. That is all thanks to the new Indian people I met, who showed me that the modern generation is far from what I used to call ‘India, for f**k’s sake’. I again believed that I am here for some purpose and I should pursue what I decided to.
And I even read my texts aloud and loved it.
The next day was probably one of most intensively terrible days of my life and I still am not sure how to deal with it. I did not get crazy yet only thanks to IAESTE guys holding my hands and the friends around telling me that I am Zuzanna Lisowska and if I get myself into even the biggest shit, I will get out of it by myself and even bring a bag of gold.
I was very keen on spending this weekend in a yoga ashram near Udupi, doing yoga and meditation, exploring hinduism. I was supposed to get there on Friday evening, unfortunately I was too exhausted to move out of the safe zone of Manipal, therefore I reached Yogagurukula on Saturday’s midday, welcomed by the guru Vijaya who immediately stole my heart (on a spiritual way! He is a happy husband and a fresh father to a little boy, future yogin).
Although it was a holiday, so we did not do any yoga, I probably had the greatest afternoon of my stay in India. After delicious lunch, eaten together with other white students from Australia, Germany, Denmark, Finland and Switzerland, I took a rest in a room which could be mine (hopefully I find time to get there again for a couple of days). Later on Nina, an Australian yoga teacher in Spain, took me for a long walk through the jungle and a nearby village, where we found more temples than in any other place (there is just one in Manipal itself!). This woman is like a Swiss knife! Yoga, massage, Indian dance, chanting, surviving among Australian snakes… Nothing she cannot teach you! We talked a lot, I shared many of my stories, beliefs and anxieties with her, and she told me that I should definitely pursue with writing a blog, write a book about what is in my head, and maybe try creative writing (of which I am thinking for some time already).
After the walk I joined the girls for chanting session, borrowed some books from guru’s library, talked to another yoga teacher starting his school in Manipal and then finally had a conversation with a guru. Listening to my story he gave me so many clues on how to start with hinduism, what to read, how to explore. And he made ma calm, peaceful and sure about my decision. He also understood my problem with yoga and meditation – I cannot stop over-thinking, when I am supposed to focus there are herds of thoughts galloping through my brain. Vijaya said that it is completely natural and I should start by changing my lifestyle, as a healthy soul needs a healthy body. Good nutrition, good sleep, good people result in peaceful and good thoughts. And that’s the beginning for me.
Afterwards we had a dinner with girls and went to the nearby temple, where our guru was about to conduct a puja (hindu counterpart of a christian mess). I really enjoyed this spiritual experience, although there are still so many things I do not understand! Saying good-bye near the temple I infinitely thanked to all the people I met and promised to be back, sooner or later. If I – or any of my friends – need an escape from life, a safe spot to settle down and think, I would definitely recommend going there, to a tower-like building with a yoga room on the ground floor and students’ rooms on the upper ones. I guess it is just my lucky sense for people – I met my yoga teacher people by accident, she told me about this place by accident, and somehow it ended up to be such an enriching experience!
This Saturday was also a day of strong independent women too. Aussie was just a beginning to that.
I really admired the Swiss girl I met there. She is just one year older than me, staying in Yogagurukula already for 2 years, with some holidays at home, planning to stay there for a couple more years. She did not want to go to the university yet, she tried the kindergarten teaching and figured out that for now the best option for her will be just to pursue with yoga and see what is there later on waiting for her. And she does. And I so f**king admire this courage to do what she feels, not what is expected from her! And the strength to believe that what she feels is right.
I also met a Danish woman living with her husband in India for five years already! I cannot imagine it, but she is in love with her lifestyle. She is all what her husband is not – peacefully doing yoga, admiring the sun raising and setting, cooking good, reading… Her husband works as an engineer (in the field similar to mine) 7 days a week and his only activities are morning jog, work and sleeping. And they still get along, and in their 50ies (in around 10 years) are planning to throw it all away and go traveling. I love them for this, especially that they share my idea about life: I do not need to have the best phone, car and apartment, I just want to be able to travel for 2 weeks every 3 months and I will be a happy human being!
I am so grateful for all that happened to me! And no matter what the next couple of days will bring me – maybe I will have to run out of the country and go homeless through Asia for the next month – I know I will be fully able to decide what I need.