Eat Pray Love: Review Part I

After a distressful marriage, and long pending divorce, Elizabeth Gilbert was depressed to the core. She wanted to learn to live happily, embrace life with happiness, move on from past love and let go of all the guilts and regrets attached to it.

So she spends 4 months in each of the three places- learn the art of pleasure in the culture in Italy, the art of devotion in India, and the art of balancing the two in Indonesia. A year spent in discovering self in different backdrops and mindful retrospection. A pilgrimage of sorts. Goals set for self -dreams turning to action. So she set on the voyage of self-discovery.

In Italy when she chose to join a language training school to learn Italian, reasoning with the societal norms and her own mind, I too got a chance to have my monologue.

Why does wanting to do something need to be justified? I want to learn a new language. It’s because it gives me thrill and happiness and pleasure. I feel satisfied and happy about myself. You say it’s not practical enough or reasonable enough to waste my time on. So what? Why does anything I feel happy doing need to have a concrete practical reason? I know I’m not moving to that country, nor am I even visiting it recently. But I want to learn its language; it’s one of my dreams, one of my forever pending wishes. I have done everything till date to please my parents, teachers, friends, boss and colleagues; I have fulfilled many of my duties, responsibilities, and expectations; I have met deadlines being punctual, disciplined and strict in my schedule. Why can’t I choose to do something just for the sake of pleasing my own self?

Learning a new language- when the nuances of the language open up to you, you read articles in the newspaper in that language referring to the dictionary every once in a while- simplest luxury.

Rome is beautiful- all its marvelous pipe works and fountains in every street, every courtyard, every place you’d see. It’s a paradise for every art lover. It’s the land of pizzas, pastries, and all yummy things for your foodie.

I want to do that- ask myself ‘What would you like to do today?’ ‘What would bring you pleasure?’- not just the agendas and obligations- but my own wish. Anyone really happy, at bliss, can turn less to more- enjoy a simple meal as if it were a feast, and have a good time with a few friends as if it were some festival. He relaxes truly by the sense of the word. He doesn’t take a vacation just after long months of workload and stress but introduces his own vacation in his daily life.

Happiness is feeling it in every cell of your body when eating a meal, or just while slowing sipping that daily cup of morning tea.


Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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