Coming home.

Its 6:30 AM. I am at the airport and Ramakant is just beginning the chant at the yoga hall. I pull my eyes away from CNN and join them. Tenderness comes as I realize I am returning to the western world. Headlines mention Turkey, Nigeria, Iran and none of it is good. The curling, whirling mix of everything. I understand there will always be darkness; I realize there must be darkness. CNN, on the other hand, seems like a peddler of doom. BBC, a wallah of fear. I can see it now, fresh from the land of no news, no TV, no Internet. I can see it until I forget.

I am in the lounge, a place inside the already luxurious Bangalore airport. I look for tea but can only find coffee. I look for trees and listen for birds but hear the HVAC.

I stand here in comfort separate from everything outside the glass. I am now part of this and I still have one foot in the place from where I came.

It’s not that I want to stay here; it’s just that I want to stay awake. I want to continue to feel. To be quiet and still. I want my lips to be motionless so the mantra can be heard in my heart. I want my body to be warm and my face touched by the sun. I want to drop my head in prayer and lift my eyes in longing.

The guy next to me works at Hasbro, he has been traveling to set up global operations. He says he is a purveyor of happiness and fun. Everything is made in China, he says. I have a key to the play-dough supply closet; my kids love it.

I want to open my heart to him, to let go of judgment about toys and made in China and global warming. I want to be the light, to love whoever I am next to, no matter what.

My teacher says the work is inside, it has nothing to do with circumstance or place or anything external. Fix yourself and in that effort everything outside of you will be perfect, absolutely perfect.

This is my practice for the next year, to purify myself until I return to beautifulawfulwonderfulterrible India.

P.S. The guy next to me, the one who works for Hasbro, just offered to send care packages of toys the orphanage. He said he would donate as often as I would like to organize the delivery ….…perfect!

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