'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menoflective [men-oh-fleck-tivv]; the condition of turning menosophical on oneself.

Today they all return from the Himalayan Yatra.  I am ready for their return.  When a group of people come together with only one goal in mind, working towards that in community certainly results in bonding.

Mind you, 60 is a large family grouping and it comes with some of the itchy-scratcy moments you might expect, as egos and cultures rub up against each other - and I don't refer to West-East here; no, within India itself there are distinct cultural differences.  Competition and chest-slapping is rife.  Rather like the Scots and the English… or the Canadians and the Yanks… or the Kiwis and the Roos.   It's fun and full of larrikinism - with a half serious undertone.

They have been missed though and I look forward in particular to my own part of the family coming back.  One close 'sister', a couple of 'daughters', a 'brother' or two and some 'sons'.  Two in particular I am keen to share time and compare notes with.  We'll call them Sunwun and Suntoo.  I would (and do) call them li'l bro's, but as they are half my age, that is stretching it a bit.  Only in the past few weeks have I come to appreciate the possibility that, had I ever had children, I would have liked them to be like this pair. 

Sunwun is the introspective, Nature-loving, observant one.  Suntoo is the younger, musical, unfocused struggler.  Both are caring and respectful and ever attentive to YAM-amma's needs.   Both reflect aspects of my own personality.  Both are also strong enough to be open and honest with me.

I was overwhelmed by their love when they turned up last month with a gift; they had clubbed together to buy me a copper-lined patterned steel water jug.  It was a gesture of enormous thoughtfulness.  That was the moment I thought of them as sons.  Till then, it would have been difficult to say for sure what role I played in each of their lives.  For Sunwun, there is intellectual and artistic support (he's my surrogate photographic legs and eyes) and Suntoo… well, he still needs that emotional and directional support I am sure his true parents would give.  With this gift, they acknowledged in their turn that I have a place in their hearts.

Thus I look back over the 18 days of liberty that has been afforded me whilst they were all away.  I greatly anticipate many a tale of wonder and awe from their trip up the marvellous mountains.  What will I have to offer in exchange?

Things different from what might have been thought, as it happens.

All those essays and the impending dissertation remain to be tackled.  When the writing happens though, it will be quick and to the point, for much reading and contemplation has been done.  There has been the time to do this. The text under study whilst they were in Uttarkashi has also been read and digested, so we can compare thinking and reactions to this.

All the ruminations and cogitations have deepened the spiritual me a few more notches - not perhaps in the same way the pilgrimage may have, but I am sure what was needed for my growth has been received.  Sunwun in particular will be able to measure that.  He is an excellent mirror.

All the ashram grounds have been studied in a way there has not been time for previously - I have made this my yatra.  Thus I will be able to relate that in the lower right corner of the property there are two flowers growing which are nowhere else on the grounds.  They are small and delicate and white with a blush of pink.  It seems the Lord arranged for them to be under the shade of the wall and away from 'traffic' in order to ensure their survival.  What, though is the purpose of their existence? Can they be said to be beautiful if no eye is to fall upon them?  These eyes came.  They saw. They have reported.  Others may not make the time or effort or even have the interest to go and gaze directly upon these tiny blossoms of perfection.  Sunwun will.

He too will understand the analogy for spiritual search at the level of advaita vedanta.

It is why we are all together here.  The yatras, whether to the high regions of the 'roof of the world', or on the small slopes of Sandeepany, came at a point in the course where we can feel the end. ( Not the Realisation of God.  That's a greater distance away!)  Despite my time being so very differently spent I can see it was a necessary break as we prepare for the downward run.  An intense period of some five months remains in which the very highest philosophical texts in Vedantic literature are to be tackled.

Yours Truly is likely to find menopolyxinaemia playing havoc as we are expected to stitch together all the patches we have been given.  You've read how I am with needles (menodropsical) never mind with recall (menosoup) and regurgitation (menomonomumal).  That's where Suntoo comes in.  However bad I've got it, he can equal me and raise the stakes.

He's a dear lad.  Needs some help though.  

Something else I have been able to do over the past 18 days is go back into my healer/counsellor self for workers and external friends and, like some kind of magic, integration and lucidity appeared.  It is my svadharma - my key purpose - to 'be there' for folk.  There was also the opportunity to take the role of spiritual teacher (that's the other reason we are here) at a recent lunch offering (bhiksha) and there was an amazing sense of  - I say it again - integration and lucidity.  Others calling upon my experience and talents brings me into focus.

I need Suntoo to need me.  Helping him will help me.

Thus the world revolves.


  1. Even though I am new to your blog and have not investigated earlier posts in order to know more about you, I find much of myself (a Canadian senior citizen) in your writing.
    I love what you've written about Sunwun and Suntoo. I have no children of my own, but my parents let me play an active role in raising my young brother, and my sister effectively gave her elder daughter to me after deciding she was incorrigible.
    I had to look up "larrikinism" (apparently an Aussie word I never heard when my young brother and I were there in 1982) but you're right about the Scots (my ancestors) and the English, the Canadians and the Yanks, the Kiwis and the Roos. A great word!
    I have tried to follow the instructions for use of your blog, but I can't find a button to push, so you'll have to take my word for it.

  2. Hari Om

    Yes and it evolves while it revolves..

  3. Hari OM
    A belated thank you Kay for such a warm response.

    Deepak-ji - soooo true!


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