Sometime in January, I started chanting. I can't remember why, but one day I just decided to begin chanting to the Hindu deity, GANESHA.
The chant: OM GAM GANAPATAYE NAMAHA! I sang it out 108 times, as that is how it's done in Hindu practice. When I mentioned it to my sister-in-law, Jo Kirsch, who is deeply immersed in yoga and meditation, she said this to me:
"Try chanting for a month and watch all obstacles disappear." GANESHA, elephant-headed and roly-poly, is the god of beginnings. One of the most popular of Hindu deities in India, GANESHA is the remover of obstacles.
I used the beautiful blue and white and cranberry-colored mala beads that Jo had strung for me as a gift for my 65th birthday.
And then it hit me: "I will organize the book around the different voices I've been writing!" There's the LEAH voice, which includes a lot of Italian. There are the journal entries. There are blogposts. There is poetry. There are lessons from the ancestors.
One day I picked up a rainbow-colored set of file folders and started sorting the pages into separate colors for separate voices.
It was magical. It was GANESHA's doing. Jo reminded me that GANESHA is also the Lord of Writers!
And soon I realized: I have to keep chanting. As much as possible. And I have to step out of the way, and let the Universe guide my writing!
I am full of gratitude. Gratitude to GANESHA. Gratitude to my wonderful sister-in-law Jo! Gratitude to the UNIVERSE for delivering me this creative project.
Gratitude to the DIVINE for my family, my friends, my health, my home, and all of the love and other blessings in my life!