Category Archives: Lifestyle

Smile, you’re beautiful

Do you smile at yourself when you look in the mirror? So often without realizing it, our personal thoughts can be so critical and harsh. We are indeed our #1 judge. The first yama (rule or code) of the yoga sutras is known as ahimsa, which means refraining from causing pain to any living creature. This refers not only to physical violence, but also to the violence of words or thoughts. What we think about ourselves or others can be as powerful as any attempt to physically harm. Any sort of mastery of ahimsa begins with you. This is really what true beauty is. So go on, be brave, be kind, let it go, and smile…


…or the lack of!  It seems to be the #1 hot topic these days. When we spoke with Dr. Raichur about it, she had a lot to say, including the story of when the King got sick…

When the King got sick, Ayurvedic doctors from far and wide came to find out why the King was ailing and to help bring him back into health. Each doctor had a different theory and after this medicine and that, one remedy right after the next, none proved to be the proper antidote.

One day an old wise doctor came to see the King and after their visit together, he said that the King only needed one thing… He needs the shirt of the man who is truly happy. All the King’s servants found delight in this seemingly simple solution and went off to find just what the doctor ordered.

So they began by asking each person in the kingdom, Are you happy?… Are you happy?… Knowing that the King’s health was dire, the people of the kingdom helped in this quest by asking one another, Are you happy?… Are you happy?… Soon enough, everyone was asking one another if they were happy, but to all’s surprise, there was not a single person in the kingdom who could say ‘yes, I am truly happy’.

In dismay, the King’s closest servant found himself sulking under a tree about to relinquish his quest, when a stranger to the kingdom passed by. The servant was desperate to help the King, he went up to the man and explained what he was in search of and what the King needed in order to get better… When the servant finally asked the man, So, are you happy?, the man said, Yes, I AM happy! But unfortunately I do not own a shirt for which to give.

The servant had an idea; he took the man to the King’s house and gave him a beautiful shirt to wear and some other clothes to call his own. A week later, the servant asked the man if he would give his shirt to the King… And somewhat jokingly, the man said, Yes I can give my shirt to the King, but unfortunately, this makes me a little unhappy.

Why do we need money?

Certainly we need to provide ourselves with the daily essentials, but nowadays it seems like the more we have, the more we need, like a “keeping up with the Jones” epidemic. For example, we need transportation, to be able to go from point A to point B. Perhaps we need a car. We always have choices, we could buy the simplest and most efficient car or we could buy a really expensive, souped-up car. Now we’re not trying to say that life isn’t to be enjoyed or that life isn’t full of desires! Cars may be one of life’s true joys for you. Well, life is for the living and should be lived to the fullest! But to have a preference or desire for something does not mean that you have to be unhappy with what it is you already have or that you’re happiness is dependent on attaining your desires. And confusing the expensive, souped-up car as something that you need is the first step in the unhappiness rabbit-hole. It is not something you need, it is a preference.

I Prefer

Learn to say I prefer… There is a big difference between need and preference. The “I prefer” mentality will keep you having a healthy intention behind your money and lifestyle goals and will attract more of what you want in the long run. In the car example, try to get in tune with this mentality… I am truly grateful for the car I have, a lot of work went into this car and it takes me from one place to another, but I would prefer to have that one! Preferences and desires are healthy and natural and good! Money desires should always be backed with good, healthy intentions or it will otherwise bring happiness. Think less about the money and more about what you want to do with the money and it will come. Good intentions are always met and fulfilled. Spend more of your time thinking about your good intentions and desires that comes from the ‘I prefer’ place and the money will come.


It’s not the amount that we have, but the way we think about it, that makes us rich or poor. We think if we buy something, that it belongs to me; I own it; I am rich. This new thing somehow says something about me — I am successful; I am fun; I am this or that. This type of desire fulfills for as long as a child’s attention span — a few minutes until the void comes back and new, malnourished desires arise. When you accept the fact that you really do not own anything except your intentions and your actions, you’ll realize that fulfillment, happiness and richness cannot be bought. Peace has to come from inside — if you are peaceful from within, your life will feel fulfilling and truly abundant.

“The One”

Finding “The One”…

Is it possible? Does “the one” even exist?

I truly believe each person has several soul mates, but the choices we make in life, determine the roads we walk upon. So crossing paths with “the one” or with “one of the ones” becomes a matter of karma. I’ll explain…

Karma has two different dimensions to it. One aspect of karma is the conditions in your life that are yet to be fulfilled – this is the larger picture, “karmic blueprint” that you may have heard of. The second dimension of karma is your thoughts, choices and actions – these ultimately create future karma because every thought, choice and action leads to something else that requires more thought, choice and action. Thus every relationship you have in life, especially important ones such as your romantic partnerships, significantly affect and likewise, are significantly affected, by your karma (the conditions that have yet to be fulfilled as well as every thought, choice and action you take.)

So, are you spinning in circles yet? You can stop because what does this all come down to? YOU. YOU are “the one” !

Bottom line, no other person can fulfill your own karma. We often look for someone to make us happy or expect our partners to do so. Certainly people can inspire wonderful feelings, but your life is yours to live, to commit to, to seek joy and fulfillment and then to SHARE this joy and fulfillment with the ones you love. No one person can constantly remedy the shifting whims of someone else’s discontentment. True happiness cannot be out-sourced.

Ingredient for happiness? Respect. Every relationship, including the one with yourself, is about respect. And respect can only come from the awareness that each individual has his/her own individual karma to fulfill.

Loving with whole heart is to love someone separate from his/her relationship to you. Loving yourself whole-heartedly is to respect yourself, no matter what others may do to you or what they may think of you.

There are many tried & true ayurvedic methods on how to achieve happiness. They are as vast as they are diverse and if you find the appropriate one for your current mindset and lifestyle, it can be profoundly effective. Despite the diversity, all these techniques have the same aim, to cultivate awareness. That is Ayurveda, awareness.

Some examples of these techniques include: meditation (in all its varied forms), breathing techniques (pranayama), detoxifications (periodic cleansing), sense therapies (lifestyle choices of sound, color, nutrition, massage, and aroma therapies), exercise (yoga asanas or any other mind/body practice), mantra work (japa meditation, bakti yoga chanting etc.) and many more…

I would love to talk about each one of these techniques in the hopes that it can bring a useful tool to at least one of my readers.

Am I happy?  Who is the right person for me?  What choices should I make?

The answers to these questions are profoundly personal and lie deep within each individual. Sometimes it requires a bit of patience for “what’s right” to come out of hiding, but it is there and it will.

Remember…the purpose of every relationship, including the one with yourself, is to make life more beautiful, more healthy and more joyful within every passing day.