The first time I went to India, I visited Kerala in the Southern part of the country. I immediately fell in love with that beautiful state, the people, food, culture, and its bright colors. But most of all, I remembered my amazing experience of being surrounded by beautiful souls.
Every place I visited, every door I walked into, every time I made eye contact with a local, I ALWAYS got a beautiful, sincere, welcoming smile. A genuine smile that came straight from the heart and shined right out through their eyes.
That is why I had to go back and explore North India this time. Of course, I wanted to visit the spectacular Taj Mahal, the beautiful Hindu temples, Varanasi (the oldest town in the world), swim in the holy waters of the Ganges River, take an elephant ride through the Ambert Fort in Jaipur and more, but what truly makes India so beautiful, unforgettable and special, is its people.
Despite the adversities they might confront every day like poverty and living in a place without the comforts of the Western world, it seems to me like they have accepted things the way they are, and there is no point to being miserable with themselves or toward others.
Here in America, people walk past each other as if we were robots. We don’t make eye contact, we don’t smile at each other, we don’t acknowledge each others presence, and if you do, people look at you as if you were a crazy person.
We are so blessed for living in a country where even the poorest person still has some comforts available to them. So why are we so indifferent towards others? We have so many reasons to walk down the street with a smile and say hello to the person standing next to us. We are not enemies. Even if we don’t share the same beliefs, we all come from the same place, we are made of the same energy and in our own way we are looking for the happiness and peace that we each deserve.
Mother Teresa said “Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing”.
Stop being a robot and smile more often, remember that you have so many reasons to do so. Acknowledging the presence of others might be the first step. Accepting your reality as it is might be the second. Start with this easy suggestion, next time you go to your yoga class smile to the person next to you. They might smile back and you might make a new friend.
Visiting India has been a life changing experience. I was lucky enough to meet the love of my life on my first visit in Kerala, I met wonderful people who not only became my dear friends, but but I like to call them my India family. Their love and support on the day my now husband and I exchanged our vows at the Taj Mahal, made the experience even more special.
Talking about the endless lessons I learned in that beautiful country would take numerous pages, but I will share with you later. For now all I can say is that appreciation of the blessings in my life both material and invisible, acceptance of whatever adversity might knock on my door, and smiling more often, are my top three lessons.
When we appreciate things, we get more of what we have, when you accept your reality you free yourself from suffering, and when you smile your brain smiles, your body relaxes, your mood changes in a positive way, and it opens the door to make new friends.
Jennifer Morales was born and raised in beautiful Veracruz, Mexico. Back in 2000 a chain of countless unexpected events started and my destiny brought me to San Diego. I believe that everyone of us has a destiny and you can run, but you can’t hide from it. As a Yoga instructor, I consider myself lucky for being able to do what I love. I have the opportunity of sharing my humble experiences with others, hoping to one day make a change in somebody’s world similar to the way yoga changed me. I’m a tree hugger and an explorer who is in constant search of personal growth. Please “Like” my facebook page Viva Vinyasa Yoga and leave your comments or email me at Viva.email@example.com Also check my website www.vivavinyasayoga.com