This world is already a very difficult place for spiritual teachers like Maa and me. We are the keepers of an ancient job, spiritual sanctity. And we are a dying class.
In 2012, I dared to step back into the waters. This was my first trip abroad, three years after my high-risk pregnancy and the birth of our son.
There is an itch that working women have. We need to get back to who we truly are. Otherwise, we go insane.
For those of you who have chosen not to have kids, let me tell you, it’s not easy to tow a toddler along on a foreign trip, that too, when you are going to conduct healing courses.
I looked at my mother who was extremely comfortable in her own routine. With seekers from across the world coming to her doorstep, she didn’t have to move a finger.
But then mothers are mothers, generous and sacrificing. She gave up her comfort to travel with me. Not only to look after Kabir personally but also to help in covering up the expenses by accepting to do her own classes.
Since the age of 22, I have been travelling almost every year to teach in Europe. Not out of any financial or spiritual privilege. But only because of sheer hard work.
Until 2012, we never asked for a full advance payment or a deposit even when we were travelling to teach in the expensive countries of Europe. We risked our own money to travel because we demonstrated our trust and generosity first hand.
During this trip, a white yoga teacher who ran a successful practice in Germany had booked an initiation from Maa.
She pulled back at a day’s notice due to pre-class jitters, which are a normal phenomenon if you are going to meet a life-changing teacher or process.
As there was no financial binding for her, it was easy for her to cancel the initiation without any sensitivity for our efforts and costs.
Her last-minute cancellation cost me my ticket. When I counselled her about the pre-class jitters, she covered up her insensitivity with the conclusion that I was greedy for money and that’s why I wanted her to overcome her mental block. Who knows what other racist thoughts may have crossed her mind about us.
The thing is that it’s a win-win for the modern western seeker. If you come to places like India, you have both the racial as well as the monitory advantages. If the people of colour travel to your country to teach about their indigenous heritage, you have the most sacred traditions delivered at your doorstep.
In both cases, this privilege is largely un-acknowledged or worse. It’s spent in cribbing about the intentions of the teachers of colour.
My mother and I are strong women. We have seen enough pain and struggle in life to not be swayed by a giant hole in the pocket.
We swallowed the loss with ample grace. Instead of reacting to her racist and immature assumptions. I let it go. I knew that it was neither the time nor the place for its correction.
The point being that this world is already a very difficult place for spiritual teachers like Maa and me. We are the keepers of an ancient job, spiritual sanctity. And we are a dying class.
There is an integrity we are upholding. It takes courage to shun greed and remain loyal to the sanctity of spiritual work. We only take a hand full of students for classes even if we have loans to pay. We have remained stubbornly un-compromised about the quality and the time taken for each class despite having lost our business to imposters in the spiritual mall. Staying true isn’t easy but carrying out this legacy is what we know best.
More than that we are also very much human. We not only have the need for social security but also pay taxes, medical bills, training fees and donations.
We maintain our regular life with dignity whilst creating consciousness, inner clarity and ease for seekers. Our spiritual intimacy with the students goes beyond the classes. We are there for them when they are struggling or rejoicing. We stand by them in difficult times. We celebrate them even when they are being judged by their own family.
People of colour have their own illusions about generosity and need.
An Indian lady once recommended another lady for my sponsorship program. This is what she wrote to me. “I am recommending this lady who desperately needs you. She is all alone. Her kids are settled in the US and the UK. She is insecure because she lives on her husband’s pension. Her kids give her only a few hundred dollars every month for expenses. She really needs your sponsorship.”
Before you contort it, let me tell you, this isn’t about money. This is about twisted priorities.
We are taught to take pride in saving money for a rainy day but not in saving our mental and emotional health in time. Both good and bad times in life require our mental stability and inner clarity apart from money. Have you invested in that? Or are you one of those people who find the facilitator unreasonably expensive while you are all pumped up about your latest addictions, gadgets, and vacations that cost the same as a poor person’s house?
If you are one of those people who isn’t under the poverty line but still believes that spiritual expertise should not be charged because it’s gods work. Here is a disclaimer. I am not doing god’s work. God doesn’t need my work. I have left that con job for organised religion.
Let’s get clear. Experts like me invest our time, energy, money and love in learning and unlearning stuff in order to facilitate you.
Ask yourself this one question. If you are not willing to invest in your own mental and spiritual health but expect a total stranger like me to invest in you, should I?
If and when you choose to get facilitated by me. Don’t just pay. Pay with immense gratitude and excitement because what you are receiving in return is invaluable, if not priceless.
A fan of your soul & its strength
P.S. Claim your gift Mini Inner Clarity Program