Andrea Becky Hanson

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Andrea Becky Hanson, Best Selling author, healing retreat facilitator, speaker, researcher, yoga, meditation and energy therapist and somatic intuitive has had the great fortune to live a life of learning, living and facilitating  healing practices. Founding Director of Merging Rivers Healing Practices, Inc.

Home > Journey to India

Sharing my trip experiences and realizations in amazing India, officially the Republic of India (Bhārat Gaṇarājya), is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world.  Always a transformational experience.  (Journal of Trips to Ecuador and to Mexico coming soon)

Andrea Becky Hanson in India

Goodbye the beautiful ‪NYC‬ horizon and hello ‪#AirIndia‬.

The flight distance from ‪NewYork‬ to ‪NewDelhi‬, India is 7,319 miles (or 11,778 km) and to ‪‎Mumbai‬, is 7,807 miles (or 12,564 km)

‪FunFact‬: India is the birthplace of ‪‎chess‬. The original word for “chess” is the Sanskrit ‪chaturanga‬, meaning “four members of an army”—which were mostly likely elephants, horses, chariots, and foot soldiers.

Andrea Becky Hanson in AirIndia

First glimpse of the mystical pink glow of India. I can feel my heart yearning to be in her rich ancient energy.
… sleeping pods for the last 8 hours of our 17 hour journey from ‪SLC‬ to‪ ‎Delhi‬. 

It is difficult to explain the trans-formative qualities on simply being in ‪‎India‬. It is deeply and undeniably at a cellular level that absorbs me into an energy so profound and complete, time stops.

The confluence and cooperation of passionate people, religions, sacred rivers, sacred land, sacred laws, life and death, and the eminent presence of Spirit lived and practiced in each moment and inescapable truth that needs no words.

A history of peaceful leaders that all died to preserve this incredible democracy that spans all history.

Our ‪ journey starts from #Delhi then to ‪RISHIKESH‬ , Dharmashala, #Amritsar, Punjab, ‪VARINASI‬, Agra, Uttar Pradesh, Jaipur, India & ends at New Delhi, India … and I will try to share my emotional, energy and spiritual observations and inspirations throughout this trip with you lovely people.

This is what you see at the arrival in ‪#‎Delhi‬ International Airport in ‪#‎India‬ … you will see a wall filled with ‪‎Mudra‬.

“A Mudra is a symbolic hand gesture used in ‪‎Hindu‬ and ‪‎Buddhist‬ iconography, performing arts, and spiritual practice, including ‪‎yoga‬,‪ dance‬, ‪drama‬ and ‪tantra‬.

Taking stairs down to the immigration at the grand Terminal 3 of the Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, the wall mounted hand gestures catch every traveler’s eye. Not just a piece of art, these gestures are often used in the Indian classical dances to depict creatures and situations.

Even in Yoga – physical, mental and spiritual practices that aim to soothe and pacify a person – these gestures are used during meditation that directs the flow of energy into one’s body.

There are a total of 28 mudras in the Abhinaya Darpan or the The Mirror of Gesture written by Nandikeshvara, a 2nd century Hindu sage and theorist on stage-craft. ”

 ‪Rishikesh‬, from the Sanskrit meaning Lord of the Senses and lives up to it’s name in every way.

Lined with mountains and the great sacred Ganges River as it’s central channel of energy running through it unavoidable permeating all actions, thoughts and emotions and internalizing the senses for an experience of the truth of our oneness. The constant awareness of the source of life both Divine and Earthly is beyond a reminder and a constant stream of the underlying sense of being - ‪peace, ‪gratitude and celebration.

It has become the ‪‎yoga‬ capital of the world as so many millions come to choose from unlimited and unending opportunities to seek and experience this deep and palatable state of the truth of being on all levels of being supported by literally thousands of years of rich and expanded spiritual discovery

Over the Ganges and through the jungle to Dharamsala we go by overnight train and 3 hour car climb to what feels like home.

Purposeful and passionate people living in ‪‎peace and gratitude while desperately and patiently fighting for justice and ‪‎freedom for their homeland and those trapped there.

Two sides of the ‪‎Indian- ‪Tibetan border of the Himalayas .

at ‪Chonorr‬ House
Next to Dali Lama ‪Temple‬

A wonderful reception from our team here including our audience, and chatting blessing with the senior monk Ven. Bagdro.

The smell of incense, the sound of chanting prayers, the feel of fresh Mountain, the sight of bright smiling eyes and the taste of tangy Tibetan food permeates the rich purposeful life here … in The ‪Dalhi Temple Tibetan culture and language conserved and a lost Country reconstructed hopefully and peacefully.

“Tibet today is one of the most repressed and closed societies in the world.”
- Senator Bob Menendez, Chair of US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, 2012

China invaded Tibet in 1950. Inside its borders and across the world, Tibetans have never stopped believing Tibet is a nation.

With my heart in the rear view mirror ( mountain photo from ‪‎Dharamshala‬), we venture now to Amritsar, Punjab, literally “ Lake of Necrar” home of Sri Harmandir Sahib - -The Golden Temple and greeted at dawn with chanting, the full moon, Venus and the lights of the temple.

It’ s good our hearts and souls are infinite, for I am quickly absorbed in what has been great trans-formative teachers for me…the teachings of Sikhism‬, ‪Kundalini‬ ‪Yoga and ‪Meditation and I’m the undeniable healing and depth of power in these holy places. We will spend most of our tome here at the temple which is a 24/7 experience.

Feeling ‪blessed and preparing to go now with great gratitude and anticipation.

Just another day at the ‪Golden Temple in‪ ‎Amritsar, India the world center for Sikhs founded in 1577 by one of the 10 Gurus, ‪Guru of love … Guru Ram Das.

It’s really a city like no other- accessible 24 hours for ALL people- Hundreds of thousands of them. Just being here is completely divinely intoxicating and transforming.

The continuous repetition of chanting the sacred texts, rich ceremony, sacred ground, sacred water, deep commitment to congruent practices of devolution and care for all, serving food all day and night to anyone and everyone who comes- averaging 100,000 a day. We helped feed 100,000 people…an incredible experience of an amazing collaboration for ‎humanity. I am deeply grateful and transformed once again. ‪‎SATNAM‬

Each destination deepens the experience of such a rich and diverse understanding of the infinite experience of life on Earth…. of sights, sounds, smells, touch and vibrations of life. And it all happens in each moment. I wish I had a camera strapped to my forehead.smile emoticon

‪Saranth‬ and #Varanasi, India - Referred to as the Abode of the Gods. It is here that ‪‎Buddha began his teachings and the famous sage Pantanjali, father of ‪Yoga understanding lived. It has been a center of intellectual reform and thought and many beloved teachers proposing tolerance and equality, love and devotion.

Of course the Great River Mother ‪Ganga‬ holds the promise of release of ‎Karma and Blessings. It is said that if one dies here and is returned to the river, they will be free of the cycle of reincarnation.

Varanasi holds the name of two merging rivers - Varna and Asi in the powerful confluence life is lived richly steeped in deep belief and devotion. It is approximately 75 square kilometers and is populated approaching 2 million people in the area.

‪‎Snake‬ ‪‎charming‬ is the practice of pretending to hypnotize a snake by playing an instrument called ‪‎pungi‬ or ‪‎bansuri‬.

A typical performance may also include handling the snakes or performing other seemingly dangerous acts, as well as other street performance staples, like juggling and sleight of hand. The practice is most common in India, though other Asian nations such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Malaysia are also home to performers, as are the North African countries of Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia.

From ‪Varanasi‬ to ‪‎Agra‬ was as if we went to a different country. The energy of each area is shockingly different.

Of course the The Taj Mahal is as spectacular as all the pictures seen from early childhood. The shear scale and concept and sorted history is an amazing deepening of this wonder of the world. I am grateful for the opportunity.

However, the most impactful experience in Agra was our visit to one of the homes for abandoned children inspired by Mother Teresa and carried on by the order of nuns for charities. I was absolutely taken to tears of gratitude for this work. This is one of the largest around the world and takes in 200 to 500 women and children. Unbelievable lyrics touching compassion and extremely provoking.

It’s hard to believe we have only 3 days left. As usual I am not wanting to leave ‪India‬

Our stay in ‪Jaipur‬, The Pink City, on ‪Rajasthan‬ has been very different from other places in India we have been. It is one of the first cities that was pre-planned by visionary rulers beginning with Jai Dev Singh (1622-1628) It has wide streets and a pleasant demeanor. It has mountains, adequate water and 3.5 million people but seems like a smaller more personal "royal” feel.

The touring possibilities are endless. Following the path of palaces- current and ancient, the blend of world religions, museums, Jantar Mantar, an amazing astrological observant and park and great shopping for authentic Indian goods.

Sleepless in New Delhi. It is about 2:30 AM, on March 8th. In about 24 hours we will board our plane for Salt Lake City via Paris. Time expands in India and I am hoping today will be no exception. A place in my heart will remain here reveling in the loving and respectful connection to Mother Earth, the deeply religious and conscious and purposeful commitment to life and self responsibility, and the beautiful abundant smiles and cordiality of the Indian people. My heart is full… and a bit sad …also fortified with a deeper commitment to an even more purposeful and conscious life in our part of the world.
Sat Nam, ‪Namaste‬, Tashi Delek, Hari Om

As our homebound plane lifted away from the Sacred Earth called India, I was acutely aware of my usual sadness and reluctance to leave and longing to stay which has been my experience every time leaving India. But this time was different for within me a strong continuing and undeniable resonance of the ancient wisdom, compassion and deep commitment to life captured my attention.
After 27 hours in route and a 13 and a half hour time zone change we landed. The sacred gifts of India were still with me. Over a month later and through many different activities, the lasting, loving resonance has even deepened. Now I know this resonance to be the truth of the human spirit that knows no borders - making the choice of life, generosity,  compassion, service and devotion to others with no question or judgment -  living each day in gratitude as another opportunity to give and receive love and share gifts.
Thank you Dear India for making the land and the rivers Sacred.  Thank you for your people now and from the many thousands of years of your amazing history. Thank you for your smiles, your intellect and your integrity. Thank you for sharing your purposeful, meaningful, intentional lives and accomplishments with all people of the Earth. Thank you, India, for nurturing and elevating the individual and collective human spirit by example. I am blessed and forever changed in my experience and understanding of life and death because of you.
ABH 4/14/16