My He(ART)-Full Life

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Memories of India

These past few days, in between working on my website, painting and taking care of Tara (!!!)...I have been sorting through things. I came across my India pics...When I turned 30, I spent 4 months in India, travelling by myself. I was born in South Africa but am of Indian descent. This was my first visit to the land of my ancestors...of mySELF. It was a pilgrimage that continues to gift me, even today. How can I even begin to describe what it all meant to me. How this experience changed me, blessed me, strengthened me and nourished me. This experience brought me face to face with mySELF. India was a mirror held up to me, reflecting everything I am. The first month was horrible! A mixed-up jumble of thoughts, sounds and smells, pollution and noise, blazing heat and confusion, malaria pills and adjustments. I felt a rage of emotions-guilt, frustration, confusion, anger, distaste, contempt, misery, euphoria. I realized that the ugly monster of mental colonization lived inside of me. I had to learn how to love India, learn to let go and trust the Universe. Then one day , suddenly, I fell in love with India! And once I did, I saw the whole of life unfold...I saw how life is mixed with death. I saw that change is the only constant; everything is in flux, non-permanent, in transition. Marigolds mixed with dung. In India, everything is surreal. Life is lived in the streets, out in the open, in technicolor. Humility and arrogance, temples and blaring music, ancient stone statues and Sanskrit chantings, stultifying poverty and the blazing sun. When I stood at the tip of India with Lanka behind me...I saw the whole of Mother India before me. This is where India begins...this is where I begin. I fell in love with India that day and in the process...with myself too...Here is the picture-I remember it as if it were yesterday.

(me at the tip of Mother India-Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu-1999)


angel said...

hello soraya...your words in this post are so potent and precious. you my dear, are showing us who you are and it is lovely.
wanted you to know that i appreciated your comments the other day, and that i've added you to my bloglines(now if i can just figure out how to use it) because i love your work and your words.
see ya in class!

ArtPropelled said...

Such a beautiful well written post Soraya and a lovely photograph of you. Your descriptions paint very vivid pictures in my mind. I've wanted to visit India for many years and have heard so many different views. Your post sums it all up. One would need more than a quick trip to actually experience the many facets of India. It must have been a wonderful experience to spend 4 months exploring.

eva diva said...

Hi Soraya,your life experience plus your written words and your art shows me how rich and complex life really is. I have studied many wonderful postcolonial literature before and it's lovely to see you embracing all the facets that makes you who you are.

I've been to India many years ago when I was too young, would definitely like to go again to discover India's many treasures.

(I've changed my blog url to this new one above)

amy said...

what an amazing post. and great picture! i have never been to india, but i had so many images flash before me when i read your post. it makes me want to go and experience it.
sounds like it was such a beautiful, complex journey--both inside and out.