Saturday, October 04, 2014


Bodh Gaya and Vipassana- Part 1- Why this?

Often in life we feel lost. Surprisingly just loafing around like that and following our instincts, we end up in the place we exactly needed to arrive at. If I try to recollect why on earth I decided to go for a Vipassana meditation course in Bodh Gaya, it seems hazy. I had heard about it once from my teacher but it really never aroused my curiosity. I, of all people, isn't the typical one who you would expect to go on a spiritual journey seeking the ultimate truth. I remember the puzzled look on my ex-husband's face on our first girl-meets-guy-through bharat matrimony date, when he asked me whether I was religious or spiritual or both and I replied, " I am practical and sane." And how can the chatterbox who was nicknamed "RadioMirchi" by her grad friends or "Kranny" (kid+granny) by the love of her life sign up for a course where she can't communicate with anybody (even through signals) and has to be cut off from the world (no mobile phones, no music, no books, no diary) for 10 days!! Well that's life! Sometimes allowing yourself to get lost is the precursor to finding your way. 

It was right after my UPSC prelims that I signed up for it online. I was exhausted- both physically and mentally- concentrating to study in the backdrop of a divorce had been very difficult and would continue to be an ordeal unless I could somehow select my thoughts as I select clothes. And then I came across this masterpiece by Elizabeth Gilbert- Eat Pray Love which speaks about the journey of a woman who is recovering from a divorce and rough relationships to find herself- so she treats herself to food in Rome, meditation in Kolkata and finally ends up falling in love once again in Bali. Now seeing that I was already overweight with the ghar-ka-khana and the fear lurking in my head about my inability to sustain a relationship, I thought I could try meditating for a change. And that's the thing about people who are still miserable about things that happened in the past. Since they constantly seek answers to why such things happened to them without knowing where to seek them, they end up being disappointed with themselves. And to overcome this disappointment, they set even more difficult targets to achieve. Vipassana is probably one of the toughest meditation courses to go through since it compels you to look within to achieve that balance and Gaya is the place one could avoid traveling alone, especially for women- which is why I think , on 29th August, I submitted my form for a 10 day Vipassana course at Bodh Gaya.

Coming up Next- The train journey
Continue reading Bodh Gaya and Vipassana- Part 1- Why this?