Life is SO Beautiful

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Ok, back to India! This weekend I'm going to tell a story in two parts. Today is about Henri, a French Buddhist monk who I met while in India last year. 

Henri came to stay at the Ayurvedic center because he had advanced pancreatic cancer. He found out when he was already very sick and arrived to see if anything could be done. By the time our group came, it was apparent that he was going to die.

Despite, or maybe because of, his diagnosis, Henri was the most alive person I've ever met. He was unafraid to tell the truth. In our first 1-1 conversation, he looked at me with a big smile and told me I didn't love myself. 

This fierce compassion opened up a challenging and amazing past year of inner work that has led me to real self-love and enabled me to become a parent. 

As we talked, Henri would look at the misty valley below us and motion out with his hands. "It's all so perfect," he said. "Life is so beautiful." And it was -- the landscape, the cancer, the truth of it all. 

When he died this summer, I knew before I found out. That night, my heart felt bigger and my eyes more ready to see. In his dying, he had given me the gift of real life.