In India I was impressed by the girl at the grocery entrance greeting customers each time in prayer pose, with a slight bow and pleasant "Namashkar". In general, interactions with people felt sacred. Being there, if you have any inherent respect for each other, it is inevitable that you also start putting your hands together and even just bending your head to others as you meet or part.
The meaning of "Namashkar" was real: "The spirit in me respects the spirit in you." Humility and reverence for everyday people.
On Sunday, I briefly went out for the first time since returning to Trinidad and was met in stark contrast by a sour-faced girl mumbling at me from behind the cash register. I'm not saying people in India are perfect and Trinbagonians are not, but culturally this is not a society where we naturally treat each other with reverence ... Which brings to mind Kamla (our Prime Minister, for those who don't know) bending to touch the Indian leader's feet. So what? Maybe instead of wasting time complaining about that, Trinbagonians should take an example from her . . . not to literally touch each other's feet when we meet, but to have some more "Namashkar" between us in our everyday lives.
I am Elspeth Duncan (Multimedia Artist): writer/columnist, musician, photographer, film maker, interactive conceptual artist, owner of 'Table for Two Made for You', Kundalini Yoga instructor living in Tobago. I create artistic works, productions and experiences to uplift, inspire, shift perspectives and raise awareness in Self and Others. Thank you for being here. Please use the links in the side bar to explore further.
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