Usually we write our blogs with you in mind, dear friend, but this time I’m going to do something different. After nearly three months in India, we’ll be returning to America in a few days. Although it will be a welcome change to stop traveling and have some familiar things around, my heart is filled with profound appreciation for all that we’ve received here. So, if you’d like, you’re welcome to read my love letter to India.
Thank you, dear India, for the depth and beauty of your people. The light of God that shines in their eyes, their gentleness, and their subtlety have endeared them to me forever. The slightest nod of a head can communicate volumes and renders words superfluous.
Thank you, dear India, for your profusion of brilliant colors — the reds, blues, magentas, pinks, and neon greens in birds, in flowers, and in the colorful saris that even the poorest of laborers wears. You offer a vision of life in technicolor, while the rest of the world remains in stark black and white.
Thank you, dear India, for your cities, where the overwhelming abundance of life — of housewives, children, students, businessmen, merchants, cows, dogs, pigeons, pigs, and monkeys — boggles the mind until one tries to see the One Divine Life behind it all.
Thank you, dear India, for your insane traffic congestion that absorbs buses, cars, motorcycles, bicycles, and motorized and bicycle rickshaws into a great organic being that pulses and lumbers forward, and somehow delivers everyone to where they want to go.
Thank you, dear India, for breaking my heart at the sight of homeless, ragged adults and children begging from indifferent BMW drivers; or at watching a little girl with no prospects of a better life happily performing backflips to receive a few rupees from the luxury cars that stop at the traffic light.
Thank you, dear India, for being a study of contrasts: of the mounds of filth and garbage along the street not far from high-rise offices and apartment buildings that rival the most innovative architecture in the West.
Thank you, dear India, for the intensity of your feelings, whether it be the pride and discipline of the military, the sensuality of Bollywood dancers, the vehemence of politicians, the love for children in families, or the devotion of saints seeking God.
Thank you, dear India, for the Himalayas, which never have entirely become a part of this material world. They stand as aloof, remote, and silent sentinels of a higher sphere of existence, and call to our souls to soar to their heights.
Thank you, dear India, for the friends you’ve given us from every part of your land. They’ve helped and cared for us in unimaginable ways — always available; always showing us how to solve the problems before us; always offering a meal or a cup of chai; always making us feel not like foreigners, but as cherished parts of their own family.
Thank you, dear India, for sending my Guru to America with his oceans of love, joy, and wisdom; and for allowing us to bring a tiny cupful of his gifts back to your shores.
Dear India, when my life is done, I hope that you’ll receive some of my ashes to mingle with the indescribable sacredness you’ve given to the world.
Your child always,