Sunday, 31 December 2017

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

Brampton, Ontario

The Girl and the Gita

Cinnamon buns, pudlas—an eggless omelette—dilled scalloped potatoes and beetroot-carrot juice were on the menu.  “And black beans as we have on the east coast,” remarked cook and host, Nirmana, at her home shared by three generations of family.

Nirmana is a regular Canadian girl who became a registered nurse and married into an Indian family.  She and her husband, Sahil, have a beautiful one-year-old daughter, Manjari.  I'm indeed happy for her.  I recall first meeting her in New Brunswick when she first showed receptivity to bhakti yoga.  I was giving one of those “Tales from Trails” presentations, when, in Woodstock, at a wellness centre, a young woman came to hear.  One thing led to another and it all led to an attraction for a different lifestyle.

She is such a qualified person and at the same time has a simple nature.  She reminds me somewhat of the verses we read today from the Gita, chapter 17.  Here they are—three of them—verses 14, 15 and 16:

“Austerity of the body consists in worship of the Supreme Lord, the brāhmaṇas, the spiritual master, and superiors like the father and mother, and in cleanliness, simplicity, celibacy and nonviolence.  Austerity of speech consists in speaking words that are truthful, pleasing, beneficial, and not agitating to others, and also in regularly reciting Vedic literature.  And satisfaction, simplicity, gravity, self-control and purification of one’s existence are the austerities of the mind.”

May the Source be with you!

0 km

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Tuesday, December 26th, 2017

Toronto, Ontario

Thank you!

After hours of drama practice on a newer production, “Many Mothers, Many Fathers,” about the life of King Chitraketu, I needed to go for that—guess what?—walk, of course.

Ranesvara and I set out for Yonge Street.  The cold blast was initially like some monster biting off our faces, but then our bodies adjusted and we were okay.  After all, we live in a world of adjustment and it is on these terms or within this state of mind which allows me to keep going.

For fun, we also trekked through the Eaton’s Centre, Nordstrom’s and the Hudson Bay stores, all one long strip of allurement.  Most of what we see are clothing outlets.  I find it strange that youth put so much energy into attire and yet everyone often ends up wearing very drab and dull, greys and blacks.

Fashion should mean colour, frills, accentuated shapes and designs.  I find sarees and even Indian men’s wear to be stylish, but that’s not what I see.  Most people here are dressed up as if in mourning.  As if, “Are you going to a funeral?”  That’s today’s modern fashion, as far as I’m concerned.

I would like to take this opportunity, now that the year’s end is near, to thank wholeheartedly the following people who have been so helpful, this year, aiding in my personal efforts to advance the cause of Krishna via the Walking Monk network: Rajasuya, Abhidheya, Nitai Priya, Dhruva, Nick Pereira, Ananda Rupa, Vivasvan, Hayagriva, Marshall, Dharma, Manasi Ganga, Curtis, and more.

May the Source be with you!

7 km

Monday, December 25th, 2017

Mississauga, Ontario

Baby Blue

I went to visit Gelda’s residence. The family runs a food business that supplies Walmart, some airlines, and other outlets.  Of particular interest to me is their business supplies great alternative sugar substitutes, brown rice and a line of other pro-health products.

“The demand is on,” said Mukesh Gelda, one of the managers whose birthday happens to fall on mine, “People want to go more organic and wholesome.”  Sounds like food fit for God.

While at his home, he brought me to his altar where daily prayers take place.  We also looked outside the window to view the baby-blue vista—a fresh snowfall, icicles and a bright clear sky to give pleasure to the mind.

It was really the only Christmas outing for me today and that’s fine.  I needed time to write and to pace—it so happened that it had to be indoors, just one more day.

I am truly drawn to the snow and the crisp challenge of it.  One call I received from Saskatchewan was their forecast for tomorrow, -51°C.  The one good thing about plummeting temperatures is that it brings everyone close together.  Body heat comes in handy at times.

As pointed out by Krsnadas, my good friend whom I’ve spent much time traveling with as monks, “This Christmas Day is the quietest day of the year.”  He’s right.  Fewer cars.  That is like heaven.

Could we have just one day without cars except for emergencies?  For Planet Earth’s sake?

May the Source be with you!

4 km