What an incredible life. Today I am preparing to leave for India for the third time. Each visit has brought earth-shattering, mind-expanding, life-affirming events into my life. I wouldn’t trade any of it for the world!
My first trip in February 2010 marked the beginning of my Saturn returns and a beautiful re-connection with my spiritual family and roots. I discovered a side to my guru, Yogananda, through meeting his family and visiting the places that held meaning in this incarnation for him that I had never known. I grew deeper in my devotion and connection to my own spiritual Self. It launched me on an inner search with new zeal.
Then came trip #2 with my father to the high Himalayas in July 2011…there just aren’t enough words to describe how meaningful that journey was (and is) for me. That pilgrimage set both of my feet squarely on the path of an entirely new life. One where God is at the center and there is no need to pretend otherwise. The relationship that no longer served me was ended through the blessings of that pilgrimage and I became free to follow my heart completely.
Tomorrow I leave for trip #3 and will be joined this time by my husband, mom, dad and 30 friends from Ananda Seattle. What life-changing experiences will this journey bring? I have a few ideas, but I can’t presume. Suffice it to say, this one is shaping up to be no less extraordinary than the last; perhaps even more so. I hope to post a bit along the way, but we will see! Either way, the insights and blessings of pilgrimage are not to be underestimated.
If ever you get the opportunity to go to a place that is sacred to you, my sincere advice is to GO! Drop everything and do it! You will be amazed at what can come from time outside of your daily life that is dedicated to God and surrounded by the blessing of holy places. It’s no wonder to me that so many religions emphasize the importance of Pilgrimage. It is a blessing, a privilege and an honor.
Gita is a writer, speaker, and nonprofit professional. She earned a bachelors degree in international studies from Pepperdine University and a masters degree in nonprofit administration from the University of San Francisco. She has traveled extensively and held leadership positions with national and international nonprofit organizations.
She was born, raised, and now resides with her husband and two children at Ananda Village, the first of eight cooperative Kriya Yoga communities founded by Swami Kriyananda, a direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda.
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