Today I turn forty and I have a lot to be thankful for. I’m a bit of a melodramatic personality that can fall into the well of self-absorption, but not so much that I can’t look out and be thankful for the life of love that has been built up around me. And so I would like to take this day, my day, to remember where the best of me has come from.
Although this list is not in order the #1 motivator and lifter of this birth of mine has been my spiritual mother and guru, Amma, who I met when I was fifteen and has since been there to support every step of my life. Amma has taught me to see the sincerity existing within each person, even when coming from polar opposite world views to my own. Amma has given me a vehicle for making my life more than just about myself, my own desires, likes and dislikes, and she has not only given me the opportunity to serve humanity but the inspiration to do so, while learning to see the divinity of supreme consciousness shining through all. Not just a mystic but a life coach, not just a mother, but a creator of endless possibilities.
I am also thankful for my own birth mother, Karuna, for showing what real sincerity is, as she throws the whole of her compassionate nature into everything she does, whether or not that compassion is appreciated, received, shunned or reciprocated. Mom never gives less than the whole of her will into everything that she does.
I am grateful for my father whose endurance sets the standard and whose motivations are well defined. The consummate public servant, and advocate for those without a voice, whose enthusiasm and love is contagious and who never changes who he is no matter who is in the room, comfortable as he is in his awesomeness, if only I were half the man, I would be satisfied.
I’m thankful for my sister Chaitanya whose ideals are never tainted by the negativity that sometimes comes from all directions but holds fast to her beliefs and her truths and is constantly able to turn the ugliness of ego and negativity into beautiful shining examples of worship for all to see, culminating in the dramas she puts on every year that make everyone in the ashram laugh, cry and smile.
I owe a special thanks to my spiritual brothers who give me a cave to vent in and who never hold my faults against me, who are a constant circle of support in traveling a path that can seem unnatural but which’s benefits cannot be denied by anyone who has put in the effort.
I am thankful to all of my spiritual sisters who have taught me the painful lesson that my opinion doesn’t always matter, but rather it is the way we move through the world that matters, that being there to support each other matters, that forgiving and forgetting matters, that loving and respecting matters, and that it is not just the goal but the way we walk the path that matters.
And I am immensely grateful for the rewarding friendships that have formed all over the world, both on and off-line. These relationships have shown me that there are so many different ways to walk, talk and view the world, but that in the end we are all just crazy for one thing, and that is love.
For all of this I want to take a moment to say thanks.