Travel Your Way – With An Open Heart

Once I sat in on the closing session of a month-long meditation/yoga course in the Himalaya. The wise and much revered guru thanked his students for attending, gave them a few guidelines for staying on the path and asked if they had any questions. Most of the students were well-educated Europeans. I cringed with embarrassment as I listened to the litany of childlike, ego-centric questions that followed. An Italian CEO asked, “Should I go to Dharamsala and study Tibetan Buddhism as I have planned?”  The patient guru replied, “Some people walk to their destination, some people take the bus, others take the train and others fly. It doesn’t matter HOW you get there. What matters is the work: the spiritual practice that will get you there.”

I see travel in the same light. It doesn’t matter how you get to your destination, though clearly, some means are more scenic, more authentic, quicker etc than others. Your travel experiences, though,  reflect your emotions and the state of mind that you are in. In order to get the most from the journey, if you leave home with an open heart, the rewards will be the greatest. You have to trust yourself to face the challenges of the unknown and the people you will encounter along the way. This doesn’t mean that you give away all your money to the first person who asks for it but when someone smiles openly with kindness twinkling in their eyes, you feel free enough to return that openness with more kindness.

Naturally, not everyone will smile at you openly. If they don’t, you pay attention and move on without bitterness or resentment. The willingness to being open, taking risks and leaving that critical judgment behind is not only the key to exciting and fulfilling travel but to taking expressive photographs as well.

An Honest Gaze

An Honest Gaze

The Mask Maker's Unguarded Smile

The Mask Maker’s Unguarded Smile

 Smiling Humility

Smiling Humility

Big smile

Big Smile

When the spirit of adventure is infused within you,  along with self-respect and a love for the great diversity that is the human condition and you do not see yourself as separate but as a part of that great mosaic then the journey really begins and you will, “Travel Your Way.”

This post is an entry to the Rhinocarhire Competition:

http://www.rhinocarhire.com/Travel-Your-Way.aspx

Advertisements

About ninagrandiose

I am based in NYC but travel regularly to India and Mexico. Both of these countries feel like home. In India I scour the country in search of fabulous textiles to incorporate into my clothing designs. I sit back and let the ambiance and wonder of India seep into my consciousness so I can be inspired to write about what India is for me. I bring a limited number of people to India on exclusive and intimate tours of my favorite hangouts. In Mexico I take in the natural beauty that surrounds me and dance the night away. I constantly give thanks for all this and am pleased to share it all with you.
This entry was posted in adventure, india, photography, Travel, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Travel Your Way – With An Open Heart

  1. josna says:

    “When the spirit of adventure is infused within you, along with self-respect and a love for the great diversity that is the human condition and you do not see yourself as separate but as a part of that great mosaic then the journey really begins. . .”
    I love this, Nina. And the photographs are beautiful.

    • ninagrandiose says:

      Thank you, Josna. Coming from such an exquisite writer, your comment means a lot to me…you can even turn an old sofa into a great post.

  2. ninagrandiose says:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s