Monday, June 28, 2010
I'm heading back to my spiritual home, the Satchidananda Ashram, in central Virginia, this morning. I have been invited to stay in the house of a friend there...for as long as I wish.
Another important teacher of mine is Jelaluddin Rumi, a 12th century mystic, a philosopher-teacher-poet, of the Sufi persuasion. After his teacher was taken from him, he began to *go in circles,* within and without, and the "whirling dervishes" grew out of this practice and release. Here is one of my favorite pieces of his, which fairly states how I feel today:
The Guest House
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
I decided to wait for a really healthy first meal today, brunch! So I brewed up some brown basmati rice, with its nutty and fabulous fragrance nicely waking up my taste buds. I did this outside Hari Kurmavatara on a double burner hotplate I purchased for use in case I ran out of propane fuel in the middle of meal prep. Although I'm not out of propane, I decided that the heat of one hour of rice cooking in the camper and one hour of propane use was enough to prompt me to wrest the as yet unused hotplate from its box.
I simply steamed the brown rice. I also used the remaining kale, mixing up a sauce with a tablespoon of peanut butter diluted with balsamic vinegar, which I stirred into the kale.
When the rice was cooked, I scooped out 1/2 cup of it to add to the kale mix.
This very nutritious dish with all organic ingredients was satisfying and quite delicious, a nice meal to begin the day with!
I complete this journal with a shot of the trinkets hanging on my rearview mirror and placed on the indented dash area:
The strands of wooden balls are from San Agustin, Colombia, made by a women's collective, and carrying many precious memories.
The long chain holds an "OM" ball, with the Sanskrit OM symbol engraved upon it that sweetly rings when moved, from my dear Maui friend Diana.
Tracey gave me PEACE, literally with the piece you see, and figuratively with her many loving and compassionate offerings to me and others in the way she *lives it out.*
On the dash is a sandstone turtle, an origami bird, a miniature silver Ganesh, a Sanskrit transliteration, bracelets, and a Quan Yin. Descriptions follow under the photos:
Here is the turtle, Kurmavatara (Tracey has its twin, left as a friendship offering)
and the lovely bird, sent off with me by a Conway friend who made it from the lovely floral paper.
Here are three strands of semi-precious bead bracelets made for me by my friend Janice.
Inside the strands sits Quan Yin , the feminine goddess figure representing courage and power to live authentically and with greater clarity as the transformative practices take hold.
The tiny Ganesh, remover of obstacles, was a gift from my friend Cassandra, a gifted Little Rock yoga teacher.
Behind it is a card with the transliteration of the Toyota Dolphin's official name, Hari Kurmavatara, penned by my friend Robert, a Sanskrit scholar.
Usha reminded me of two other important items that I travel with:
My beloved teacher, Swami Satchidananda, whose spirit and Teachings are always with me. I used to keep it on the dash, but it was getting jostled about too badly. It is definitely part of my traveling altar though.
And this profound philosophical statement, which I gave to Robert on the occasion of our Vow of Commitment (and later reclaimed), that I now always keep close-at-hand: "LIFE'S TOO MYSTERIOUS...DON'T TAKE IT SERIOUS!"
Friday, June 25, 2010
I'm on a roll, so I'll post some photos of tonight's dinner in my house-on-wheels:
I needed to restock my groceries before departing Mooville in the Toyota Dolphin, so on our last night (Wednesday) Tracey took me to the ONLY natural foods store in her necka'da woods, The Healthy Grocer, a wonderful full service mostly organic food store.
Among other things, I bought a beautiful, fresh, HUGE bunch of organic kale for $1.99. I wish I had taken a photo of the lovely bouquet before destemming it, but here it is ready to go, filling my tub more than halfway:
I started by sauteeing it in a bit of olive oil with a little salt in my BIG skillet:
Such a beautiful green as it reduces!
I separated out half for another meal tomorrow. I hope Tracey doesn't mind that I took the leftover veggie korma and a bit of biryani (she wasn't there to query) from our Indian meal out at Masala Bistro, also the evening before my departure. I added this to the kale.
All dished up, on the picnic table, ready to *chow down.*
I think I did a purdy good job of cleaning the plate, shown inside empty skillet.
Wish you had been here to share it with me Tracey!!!
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