Travelling in India does include with it the risk of getting ‘Delhi Belly’, or a mosquito bite that could turn into an unfriendly affair (mostly during monsoon months), or even an unforeseen injury from a stray dog.
The risk for encountering violence however is a rare event.
Considering the fact that India’s population is over a billion, traffic is everywhere, and noise abounds, there is a much smaller proportion of anger and violence when compared to Western countries.
Kindness seems to be a value that is extremely present in Indian society.
Consider a family that took one of our students in for three days of private musical instruction and refused pay, a taxi driver who invited us for tea at his sister’s home, a vibrant smile from an orphanage child, and a kitchen worker who packed us cashew snacks for the flight home.
Little acts of kindness are found every single day.
In the West, it often seems we get so caught up with our troubles and dramas that we forget the potency of those small gestures of kindness. What happens when we expand beyond our own story and remember others who are also in struggle?
Showing consideration to others carries with it a host of practical health benefits, including a reduction in isolation and depression, a release of feel good endorphins, and a reduction in unhealthy states of distress.
Experiment with what Anne Herbert calls random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty. Smile at a random stranger. Send someone in your life a thank you email. Buy a homeless person a healthy meal. Call someone in your family and tell them how proud you are of them. Hide a love note in your beloved’s lunch bag. Send somebody organically grown flowers.
No matter what country we live in what we share is our humanity and kindness is a thread that can enrich our lives from the inside out and the outside in.
More about Danny Arguetty, M.A.
Danny Arguetty, M.A., a Nutrition, Health and LIFE (Living in Free Expression) Counselor, has been involved in the health field for the last decade. He guides and works privately with clients utilizing customized programs based on bio-individual needs and diverse life situations.
He specializes in yoga privates, weight loss, digestive disorders, healthy aging, sugar/caffeine dependencies, persistent fatigue, chronic stress, relationship support, life coaching and practical healthy living strategies.
Arguetty is also a faculty member at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, Adjunct Faculty at Williams College, and author of Nourishing the Teacher: inquiries, contemplations & insights on the path of yoga. He leads 200hr Yoga Teacher Trainings in Southern California and Advanced 500hr Trainings in Kerala, India.