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Week one was all about adjusting to the new schedule, meeting the new people in the whole new surrounding. Learning the words to the daily chants, familiarizing myself to literally, everything.

As soon as week two came around, I was cruising. I was not only going from place to place, attending all my classes, and lectures with ease, but I found myself doing everything with a big smile on my face. Catching yourself smiling for no apparent reason is the most blissful feeling. Like everything is going just right. At the ashram, there is no pressure, no judgement, no stress, all you need to focus on is your well being. You are welcomed to eat or do things with nobody, and everybody.

Week two was also a slightly more special week because two things, one, I dropped, and broke my phone, two, it was my birthday. I was a little worried about not having my phone with me. To take photos, to keep in touch. But little did I know, it was the most liberating experience. Both being at the ashram, and not having my phone, might have made week two the most rewarding week of all. But of course, the only downside was, without my phone, how was I supposed to take photos and share this experience with you all? But problem solved as a friend of mine in the city, managed to hook me up with a brand new phone!

My birthday was one of the main reasons why I decided to go on this yogic journey. I was bored of celebrating my birthday in the same old ways. For my thirtieth birthday I wanted to be alone, with a completely new me, I wanted to feel as I did, before “life” happened. I wanted to reintroduce elements of innocence to the way I perceive and do things. To purify my past, to cultivate non attachment with my present mind and to advance with an open heart. Only a few people knew that it was my birthday, because my goal was to be as low key as possible. I woke up that morning feeling no different than any other morning. I went about my day, I swept, and moped the temple floors, as I did, same time, everyday. I remember thinking, how odd it is to be completely incognito, but not feeling deprived of attention, and instead feeling extremely special, because I gave myself the gift of going within. To enquire the heart, and mind.

Humbling, grounding, endlessly rewarding. I will always remember those random smiles, and intense urges to laugh from within the depths of my little old heart.



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