Recently, my husband and I went to Gokarna. Our main reason to go there was a dream my husband had. In the dream, it was suggested to him to visit Gokarna. We also clubbed panchakarma treatment in the visit. For panchakarma, we randomly chose an ayurvedic center named Sasya Sanjeevini Panchakarma Centre in Gokarna. We don’t know anything about this centre or Gokarna. It is a plain risk we took.
We stayed in the center for 12 days. It is run by a young couple named Dr.Patanjali and Dr.Soumya Sree. This couple and their entire family chose to live a Vedic life as taught by Dr.Patanjali’s great grandfather named Brahmarshi Daivarata. He lived his life based on Vedic principles. He is the disciple of the famous Kavyakanta Ganapati Muni of Thiruvannamalai. He chanted new Vedic mantras in his samadhi state for 16 days and his Guru noted down these chants while disciple in a state of samadhi.
The Center is full of greenery. It has almost 50 cows, 5 dogs, more than 15 workers, and a family. It has 15 acres of campus where almost 500 types of herbs, many fruits, vegetables, grains are freshly grown in an organic way and these are used in treatment. During our 12 day stay, we experienced many things and had great learnings. Below are some of the lessons from this family that inspired us.
- Treat workers with dignity: The center had more than 15 workers who do massages, farming, taking care of cattle, etc and everyone worked with a smile. They are hard-working. No one shouted at them or micro-managed them. We were curious and asked Dr.Soumya if they scold workers when they do any mistake. She said – “My father-in-law says we don’t have any authority to scold a worker. We can gently correct and guide them. And if we don’t like their working style, we can let them go. But scolding, shouting, or speaking to them rudely is not acceptable. We don’t own employees. And every person, no matter what work he is doing, needs to be treated with dignity and respect.”
- Universal Love: We experienced Universal love in action in this center. Dosas are made every day for breakfast. They are made with butter as per the recipe given by their great grandfather and they taste very good. Everyone loves these dosas. The same dosas are given to dogs and cows also. We asked them why do they do that. They said – “We observed that cows and dogs too love these dosas. These dosas don’t fill their stomach but they are like chocolates which bring them joy. So, we feed all 50 cows and 5 dogs these dosas every day. We prepare more than 300 dosas per day.” In this center, plants, animals, birds, human beings are all loved equally.
- Time for everyone: Dr.Patanjali is a famous ayurvedic doctor in Gokarna and he and his wife manage 2 Ayurveda centers in Gokarna. Every day, they treat 50 to 100 patients, and sometimes, it goes beyond this number. Dr.Patanjali is passionate about agriculture. Every day, he spends some time farming. He also personally takes care of dogs and cows. This couple has a 5-year-old child and they give enough time to this child. And this couple takes care of parents, in-laws, workers, etc. And patients like us keep asking many questions. They have plenty of time for us also. We have not seen them in a hurry or busy state in spite of doing so much work. They are always relaxed and have abundant time in their hands. They have time for everyone and everything.
- Work is worship: Dr.Patanjali says – for him, every day is the same. He works every day and there are no weekends, festivals, breaks. We asked how he is able to work like this every day. Doesn’t he get tired? He said – for me, work is worship. No matter what I do, I do it with this attitude of – work is worship. No task is big or small. It is work and needs to be done as worship of God. Also, I do multiple works in a day. If we do only one work at a stretch, it is tiring. But when we do multiple works one after another, it is relaxing and refreshing.
- Generosity: The center has many types of fruits and they are delicious. The couple gave us all the freedom to explore the center. They told us that we can eat any fruit and no one will question us. We are free to explore the center just like our home. Also, the workers are treated regularly with what they enjoy. The family practiced generosity with everyone in the center.
- Contentment: The family has a lot of contentment. They had their own up’s and down’s in life but they lead life with contentment. They are happy with the life they created.
- Hardworking nature: Everyone in the family wakes up before sunrise and is very hardworking. I thought prosperous life is to have many workers and do nothing. But this family taught me the meaning of true prosperity. If they want to, they can sit idle doing nothing. They can afford it. But they work on par and sometimes more than their workers. Everyone in the family has certain works to do like taking care of cattle, plants, cooking, running the center. Even their 5-year-old child also has certain tasks like feeding the birds, taking care of dogs, etc. There is no laziness or tiredness anywhere in the center.
- Not imposing ideas on others: Dr.Patanjali’s father leads life according to the way shown by Brahmarshi Daivarata. He has his own ideals and a way of life. I asked Dr.Soumya if he imposes his beliefs on others and expects them to follow his beliefs. She said – “my father-in-law believes that every person is divine and he/she knows how to live life. So, he does not impose his ideas or beliefs on anyone.”
- Be process-oriented: A farmer’s life is full of up’s and down’s. So, what motivates Dr.Patanjali to do agriculture? He says that he loves the process of agriculture and he is willing to repeat it any number of times irrespective of the failure and success. He is in love with the process rather than the result or product and this is what keeps him motivated to continue with agriculture.
- Life is a celebration: In this center, every day is a celebration. Be it jaggery preparation or honey harvesting or sweetcorn harvesting, everything is relished and enjoyed. People are not afraid of physical work or failures or risks. Every day is lived fully.
- Not afraid of responsibilities: Dr.Patanjali is in his early thirties and his wife is in her twenties. They are young but they are very different. They are not afraid of responsibilities. For them, taking care of someone is not a burden. They enjoy taking care of animals, birds, plants, human beings. They enjoy being accountable and taking responsibility. And when things go wrong, Dr.Patanjali wants his workers, family members to blame him and not anyone else. He believes he has enough capability to fix things and hence, wants to be blamed when something goes wrong.
My husband and I are very mesmerized by this family living in line with Vedic principles. We felt like staying in Gokarna forever. But our inner Guru said – “Learn the essence of this center and practice it in your life. Take back these teachings and make your life a Vedic life. Don’t be attached.” So, we dropped the idea of settling down in Gokarna and started thinking of the areas of improvement in ourselves.
This is a random meet and visit to Gokarna but I guess nothing happens in life randomly. My huge gratitude to the divine, my Guru, all the Gurus, and this wonderful family for showing us how beautiful life can be when we walk the path of virtues. Very grateful for this trip. Dear Guru, please bless us to walk the path shown by this beautiful family.
Sarve jana Sukhino Bhavanthu!