Love Yourself

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas in the Himalayas

"Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what
you do are in harmony" Mahatma Gandhi

Greetings from India

Om gam ganapatay namaha

I introduce to you my friend Ganesh Ji. He is very handsome, the remover of obstacles and the God of Auspicious Beginnings. Ganesh Ji is the son of Parvati and Lord Shiva (Shiva is the destroyer of evil and is worshiped in the temples along the holy river Ganga) his wife Parvati is also very powerful as the Goddess of fertility. Ganesh Ji is the first among all Gods and is always worshipped at the beginning of puja or prayers. During my stay at Phool Chatti Ashram, Ganesh Ji has been providing me the opportunity to shed away anything that is not serving me and to make room for grand new beginnings. May 2009 be full of abundance in all ways for the world. For the moment, my time at Phool Chatti Ashram has now come to an end and it is time to move on. What an incredible experience I have created for myself. Today, I am feeling very appreciative and thankful for everyone that I connected with and for what I have been able to give and receive.

Living daily ashram life is something that I invite all of you to experience at some time in your life. Simplicity, peace, love and community are qualities of this lifestyle experience. Today, I realize that World Peace truly does start with peace inside. Phool Chatti Ashram has provided me with a safe and sacred place to explore what that means to me. The location in nature is spectacular, full of high spiritual vibrations, love, knowledge, wisdom and connections with people from around the world.

On the 24th of December we had a very special day. We travelled 10 km north of the ashram by jeep and then hiked about one hour up 250 stairs to a beautiful temple on top of a mountain.

The scenery from on top of the mountain to the valley below and across to the terraced rice gardens was impressive. I loved the warm sun and the many cactus and plants that reminded me of my home in Baja, Mexico.

The first order was to greet and pay respect to the Gods,
then the Arti or fire ceremony and finally preparing the food over an open fire for our picnic. The food tasted wonderful. We enjoyed subjai (a mixture of vegetables and rice), yogurt, potatoes and masala as we sat high above the mass consciousness, enjoyed our new friendships, savoured the clean, clear and warm sunny air.

Christmas day was extra special for me. My friend Mike that stays at the ashram is getting ready for a trek to Everest Base camp (this will be his 8th trip) mentioned that he was walking to town (about 6k) to a special Christmas church service. He invited me along and I accepted. Christmas morning was sunny, warm and I prepared clean clothes for the day and the walk to town.
We were a few minutes early so we went to the German bakery for ginger tea and a pastry. I had an almond goodie. It was yummy in my tummy.....remember I have been living off rice, chapatis and subjai for the last month. I ate every last crumb.

The bakery is located just over the bridge in Laxman Jhulla and a great place to watch the monkeys and people strolling along the bridge. Within a few minutes we were on our way along a narrow path winding along the upper river bank. Finally, after weaving our way through many twist and turns along the path, we came to a tiny ashram that has three guest rooms. I was greeted by a lovely woman referred to as Swami Mata Ji. Upstairs she had a very small chapel big enough for a few people. It had a special energy. The windows looked out to the Himalayan mountains and it was free from the noise of town. Poinsettas, a small manger, candles, photo of Jesus and Hindu symbols such as aum etc...were at the central alter. Very quaint. There were just three of us. We enjoyed a special Christmas service which was a combination of Christain and Hindu. We even sang Christmas carols. I was delighted. Have you ever had one of those very intimate experiences with people that you never met before and yet it is like you have known them all of your life? I was enchanted, touched and felt accepted for me. I even remembered the words to the Christmas carols. This is a Christmas I will always remember.

After the service, Mata Ji offered us special Indian sweets and we enjoyed a friendly visit in the gardens. Before heading home we wandered to the local book store. My favorite place to go. I love books and the store here has everything under the sun, a great place to explore. Mike and I walked back to the ashram really enjoying the day. By the time we got back it was late afternoon. We had walked about 12 km. By this time I was hungry. Dinner was extra spicy and served around the camp fire.

I plan to come back next year to lead a group of women wishing to have a special inspiring experience here at Phool Chatti Ashram.

It is the 26th and this morning I have my last yoga practice at the banks of the holy river Ganga at Phool Chatti. Until next year, I embrace her with pure love and respect. It is now time to head off to pack for my adventures back in Haridwar and the train ride to Varanasi.

In happiness and deep peace - Valma ji

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I have created this amazing life, attracting incredible women into my space. All of these women are unique and ready to live their real life too. My definition of success is like a river flowing with freedom, magical adventure, creativity, curiosity and recognition. My personal mission is to travel and create an enlightened world by spreading the light of consciousness. Everything that I choose to BE, DO and HAVE meet this mission and every day in every way I remember who I really am. I love my life!