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How divine intervention ended my inner turmoil

by Aparna Tushar Dedhia
How divine intervention ended my inner turmoil
The inner child cries for acceptance and recognition. The divine hears the whispers of our hearts and leads us back to the path of love, understanding, and self-discovery.

As I shuffle through the chapters of my childhood, I see the beginnings of a pattern, where on countless occasions as I raised my hand in the classroom, it went unnoticed and unacknowledged. Every instance left behind a palpable scar of rejection and feelings of dejection.
Sporting soda-bottle glasses and born with a roly-poly figure, I still wanted to be seen, to be heard, to carve out my own space in a world indifferent to my presence.
I was reminded of a Maya Angelou quote, “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” The pain of a story untold, and unshared experiences, all contributed to the shape of my inner narrative.
The soda-bottle glasses hid a face that craved recognition. My glasses became a distorted lens through which I perceived myself. The extra weight I carried, both physically and metaphorically, became a burden of unmet expectations and a constant struggle to be recognized, to be accepted.
But why am I reminded of all of this today?
Those memories and accompanying feelings surfaced when one of the devotees in the spiritual organization I am attached to, told me, “They haven’t invited you; you are one of the older sevaks, who has been working with the organization for such a long time.” Whether it was a taunt or a question, it pierced my heart like an arrow.
I found myself grappling with the unsettling feeling that my contributions were going unnoticed, overshadowed by the recognition bestowed upon others. That even those relatively new were receiving greater blessings from the guru was disheartening.
The battle between my mind and heart waged on.
My rational mind urged me to ignore the external comparisons and reminded me that my journey was my own. My mother had instilled in me the importance of seva (selfless service), and the belief that generating good karma involved using tan (body), mann (mind), dhan (wealth), and vani (speech) to serve those around us.
My heart cried out for acknowledgment and external validation.
I wanted to adhere to the three tenets my guru preached—Love, Selfless Seva, and Transformation. Engaged in seva without expecting anything in return mirrored the plight of a child in a classroom whose raised hand went unnoticed.
How could I aspire to transform or guide others towards transformation when I, too, felt unloved and overlooked?
This inner turmoil underscored the complexity of living the teachings I sought to follow. It became eventually a journey not just of external service but of internal healing and self-love.
I realized that the epistles preached by our guru weren’t just external guidelines but profound invitations for inner reflection and personal growth.
Love, Seva, and Transformation weren’t just actions to be performed outwardly but a path to be walked inwardly, nurturing not only the well-being of those we serve but our own as well.
The journey towards transforming others became inseparable from the journey of transforming oneself.

How divine intervention ended my inner turmoil

 In expressing my pain, I found solace, and in bearing it, I discovered strength. The choice to be heard, whether by others or by the divine, became a harmonious dance between vulnerability and resilience.

I have come across many women with experiences like mine. One particular story has stayed with me. This friend of mine, born into a traditional Marwari family, has grappled with the pervasive sense of being unwanted right at the outset – a ‘girl child’ relegated to the shadows in a culture that favored sons.
The discrimination dogged her life, from being denied simple pleasures such as a personal sound system to more profound wounds such as being excluded from a family trip abroad through a deceitful affidavit showing her as a year younger.
These patterns persisted into her marriage, where indifference and apathy towards her became normalized, etching deep scars. It took her many years to confront the harsh reality of her unwanted existence. The emotional residue cast a shadow over every relationship she has formed.
Yet, a glimmer of redemption has emerged for her — empathetic friends who have comprehended the depth of her pain.
Her profound spirituality, rooted in a love for Vedanta and a close connection with the Chinmaya Mission that teaches that philosophy has become an anchor. In moments of despair, spiritual pursuits have provided solace and purpose to her.
Her story helped me out too. I had to resolve my conflict — to express my pain or bear its weight in silence.
As if responding to the silent cries of my soul, the divine unfolded a series of beautiful events. I was led to the heart of our guru’s ashram on my birthday. That sanctuary of serenity became a space where my unspoken pain seemed to dissolve in the ether, and the divine presence wrapped around me like a warm embrace.
At that moment, I surrendered to the divine orchestration of my life. The path I had chosen, marked by the pursuit of inner peace and understanding, unfolded before me in ways I hadn’t anticipated. It was a gentle reminder that the divine, in its infinite wisdom, has ways of reaching out to us, nudging us back onto the chosen path when we veer off course.
I found a profound sense of belonging in the ashram, nestled in the Bhimashankar hills, about 50 miles from Mumbai. It houses the MahaKaali Mandir, pulsating with energy. The Dhyaan Manthan Kshetra embodies the essence of the ashram. It is surrounded by a tranquil pond adorned with lotus fronds.
Surrounded by the energy of love and acceptance at the ashram, the realization dawned that the journey of healing and self-discovery is not always a solitary one. The divine orchestrates encounters, events, and moments of revelation, guiding us through the labyrinth of our narratives.
In expressing my pain, I found solace, and in bearing it, I discovered strength. The choice to be heard, whether by others or by the divine, became a harmonious dance between vulnerability and resilience.
In the unfolding chapters of my life, the ashram remains a symbol of divine intervention, a testament to the experiences that shape our journey. It serves as a reminder that even in silence, the divine hears the whispers of our hearts and responds in ways that lead us back to the path of love, understanding, and self-discovery.

Photos courtesy: Freepik

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Manisha Mahimkar January 13, 2024 - 8:38 am

Aparnaji, for the past few years I know you, i have seen and experienced you to be a selfless giver, be it to the society, family, friends or relatives. You are a pure Soul which also reflects in you writing which is so deep, yet many of us can connect with it so easily. It is none other than you who connected me to our Guru, Divine Friend where my journey of Transformation began and there was no looking back thereafter. You are very special and blessed. Keep writing and inspiring and spreading Love💓
Love you so much✨❤️

Parag J January 6, 2024 - 6:43 am

Well penned Aparna, writing is itself therapeutic, I can relate and vouch from my experience.
You sharing this with your own experience, will itself help, motivate & inspire many readers, hence thanks for sharing.

Aparna Dedhia January 4, 2024 - 11:49 am

Great gratitude for all who took out time to read and comment on my write-up. Like one of you rightly commented the impact of the inner turmoil till you actually surrender is far greater than we can imagine.

Vishakha December 27, 2023 - 2:57 pm

Very well written
So much to understand and so much to ponder over

Beenal handa December 27, 2023 - 1:25 pm

Excellent Reading,lends a sense of déjà vu to my grim memories of growing up in the mud of a society that holds materialistic ambitions in high esteem. Though we walk on different paths our destination is one and our journeys will leave an indelible mark on the lives of the people we come across. I am glad you never got bitter but only better in all your endeavours like the lotus in the mud…loved reading the last line…divine hears even in silence 🙏🏽

Bansari Nagda December 27, 2023 - 5:09 am

It is so difficult and yet so important to share our experiences with the world. You never know who needs to hear that account or know that others are sailing in the same boat as well. Some times, our experiences help others get the nudge they’d been looking for. Thank you so much for sharing this piece from your heart.

Smruti Shah December 27, 2023 - 4:41 am

Such an intense, thought provoking and deeply self-reflectory piece…I’ve always been in awe of your writing and this one struck a very close chord to the heart. Thank you for baring your soul into such beautiful words

Kavitha December 27, 2023 - 2:25 am

I must also add here, knowing you so well since past few years and see you grow so much more as a person, the journey that you have penned here, awakens a thought in my mind about my journey from a child to this person that I am today. Your article, I am sure must have done that to all the readers.

Soniya December 26, 2023 - 5:01 pm

Brave to bare it all! Very well written. Keep on writing!

Kavitha December 26, 2023 - 4:10 pm

Your write-up beautifully showcased the emotional journey of the inner child seeking acceptance and recognition.Thank you for sharing such a heartfelt piece. Your work not only enlightens but also empathizes with the complexities of human . Your ability to convey such deep emotions and sensitivity speaks volumes about your insight and talent as a writer.

Mahima Anil Menda December 26, 2023 - 4:09 pm

The purest connect

Arpanaa Raajput December 26, 2023 - 2:34 pm

Embracing acceptance can lead to a more content and positive outlook on life. And love. And relationships.
it’s important to remember that your goodness is a gift that not everyone is ready to appreciate. Nor deserving of it. Well expressed from heart Aparna ❤️

Jannhavi P Vasaikar December 26, 2023 - 12:57 pm

Have seen you in all these stages,yet u have been a super cheerleader for your kids…..we as parents do what we underwent with our kids, but you ditched the way n carved a super mom for them!!!
Hats off to you.
Words are too small for your achievements as a parent.
Love you 😘

Dr Vimi M Thapar December 26, 2023 - 10:49 am

Very well written.
Straight from the ❤️
I am sure many more must have gone through the same emotions but everyone does not have the courage to express the way you have
Yes fully agree that each one of us will get True solace and True Peace only through right Spiritual understanding with the help of a True Master
Would look forward to further posts from you

vaishali shah December 26, 2023 - 7:04 am

it’s beautiful… you have managed to enlight true essence of spirituality..self criticism requires lot of courage.just loved it..such articles creates turbulence within.thanks for sharing and hoping to get more writing from you

Shruti Jain December 26, 2023 - 6:57 am

Kudos to the writer for eloquently capturing the intricate emotions tied to the pursuit of recognition and personal growth. The article navigates these complexities with clarity, making it a compelling and relatable read.

Jigna Tanna December 26, 2023 - 6:28 am

Superbly penned down. An iconic lady’s version🥰

Pratishta December 26, 2023 - 6:21 am

It takes great courage to share our innermost thoughts with the world. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Suma Varughese December 26, 2023 - 5:51 am

Superbly written, Aparna, with great depth, honesty and vulnerability.
A powerful testament, indeed.

vaishali shah December 26, 2023 - 11:13 am

very beautifully written.. it’s a soul stirring article….true spiritual journey with self criticism and honesty.thank you for sharing and waiting for next👌👏

vijaya rao December 26, 2023 - 5:47 am

Very well put. Thanks for the insight!

Nirmala Kulkarni December 26, 2023 - 5:24 am

Your story is the story of so many of us. Certainly the divine intervention in our lives leads us to much better knowledge of ourselves and teaches us to seek happiness in the true sense.

Ami December 26, 2023 - 5:10 am

Wonderful expression of inner turmoil and the impact that it holds forever until you decide to surrender.

Bijal Maroo December 26, 2023 - 5:08 am

Wonderful article, written vulnerably. It touched my heart, the way you have shared your experience with such honesty. I particularly liked this statement, “Surrounded by the energy of love and acceptance at the ashram, the realization dawned that the journey of healing and self-discovery is not always a solitary one.” Love and acceptance are key to any healing. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Simi December 26, 2023 - 4:55 am

Most people constantly go through this emotion of being unloved until they tread on spiritual journey. You have captured this very nicely in your writing Aparna.
Great going!

Dr Nivedita Patil December 26, 2023 - 4:42 am

Wow !! Amazing. Your spiritual experiences fed my soul too. Thank you for sharing.

Vaishali Bhat December 26, 2023 - 4:42 am

Beautifullfy penned down .Your article is an inspiration to all those who are on their spiritual path.More power to you dear.❤️