Muse from my travel…
The three realms of existence, the underworld (demons realm), the earth (human realm) and heaven (gods realm) are a common concept in both Hindu and Greek mythology, and are at the core of many of their dramas. The concept of Hell, Heaven and earth are shared by most major religious doctrines, and so it is no surprise this analogy had come up while traveling… However, I would like to request you, my kind reader: please do not arrive at unintended conclusions. I do not mean it literally. In fact, if anything, I believe the archetype notions of the three realms are within us at all times, as the potential of life, such as Tamas, Sattva, and Rajas, (the three-enrgeies components of life force). As such, these three energies are present at every place, at all times. And, regardless of the analogy to follow, I still LOVE India, Israel, and the UK (and everywhere else) just as well. And now for my short story…
Our trip began in India; hot and moist, crowded, dirty, and noisy, with no relief, 24/7 of humming and buzzing and intruding, with her religious fanaticism, extreme flavors, scents, and unexpected “surprises”. Rivers of people rushing to holy lakes and holy mountains, and in their frenzy leaving trails of trash, fumes, bodily excrements, and utter chaos; Demanding your every ounce of attention… I really can’t help it describing her as something sort of hellish.
An Island of repose was Dharamsala. In Dharamsala the air was clean, the mood tranquil, the energy calm, and the forest breathing with peace. It was lovely to return after 18 years and find the area just as charming; the people pleasant and welcoming, the food clean and healthy, the atmosphere charged with sound spirituality and creativity, an utter delight!
In Israel, embraced by the unconditional love of family and friends, I felt so supported, loved, cared for; I felt my community, my roots, my people, my heart. Israel was my “human realm”, my earth, in all her shades of brown, in her emotional mood and anceint feel. I loved and loved and loved, and the well of nourishment was over flowing, with sincerity, with dark eyes looking deep, seeing me, seeing us in the full rainbow spectrum of our humanness.
And then, traveling for the first time to the UK, we were greeted by the serene beauty of water-color painting… infinite shades of green, soft light, rolling emerald hills, occasional castle raises her head, grazing sheep – quietude, harmony and beauty everywhere. We spent most of our time in Totnes, a charming town in Devon county (south-west England), where the folks are genuinely friendly and courteous, the beer is fresh and abundant, organic healthy stuff seems to have continuously exist here, bypassing the industrial revolution, and I also declare it as the cake capital of the world! In short, simply heaven.
And now what? I’m back in the states, needing a little time to adjust to a new angle of seeing the world, and perhaps re-form my impressions of here…. for now, I can already state the obvious, which is hugely so after being away, in America folks are assessing their self-worth based on how much money they have in their pocket, and the land of infinite possibilities does have a price tag. Yet, I’m happy to be home!