For those of you who are readers of my posts, you know how much I love Bollywood movies! Yes, they are long, and they are usually musicals, and many times, they are hopelessly sentimental and romantic too. ? But the thing is, that I grew up watching Bollywood long before knowing anything about Hollywood movies. So perhaps watching Bollywood movies stirs up some sort of childhood nostalgia in me. Maybe it is a way to connect to my roots. Whatever might be the case, one of my most favorite ways to relax is to curl up with a Bollywood movie. ?
These days I also seem to be ‘led’ to movies that are perfect to allow for deeper healing around some concept or idea that I am ready to release. I have been reflecting on the family roles we play and how we can get caught up in fulfilling external obligations (the form) and miss the real experience we want to share (content) which of course is love, light and joy. Often, this can create a sense of separation from the very people in our lives we want to share love with.
A few weeks ago, I ‘stumbled’ upon Dil Dhadakne Do (English: Let the Heart Beat) – a 2015 Bollywood comedy-drama film. The movie revolves around a Punjabi family forced to face their dysfunctional relationships aboard a Mediterranean cruise organized to celebrate the parents’ 30th wedding anniversary.
The Mehra family – from the outside – appears to be the quintessential successful New Delhi crème de la crème, prominent and wealthy business family. Kamal Mehra- the patriarch, has lived a typical rags-to-riches story of how a man with effort, determination and will to succeed – can become ‘something’ in the world. His wife is his partner in helping to sustain this image of a couple that enjoys all the success worldly life can offer- money, servants, fancy houses, luxury cars, Louis Vuitton handbags and other material comforts along with golf club memberships and private planes. However, their marriage is suffering under the shadow of Kamal’s multiple extramarital affairs- of which everyone is aware, even his wife, yet no one is ready to deal with.
Their children – Ayesha and Kabir Mehra- are struggling to find a way to negotiate the world ‘made’ by their parents which they have inherited – but cannot seem to fully inhabit. Ayesha is a successful business entrepreneur in her own right- yet struggles to find peace and happiness in her arranged marriage. Her husband, her mother-in-law and even her parents cannot appreciate her business talent and acumen. Her mother advises her to pay more attention to her home life, and how having a baby will resolve her marriage problems. Meanwhile, her younger brother Kabir, loves to fly planes yet on the ground he struggles to fill his father’s shoes as future CEO of the family business empire- a role he is not sure he has any aptitude for nor any desire. His heart feels most free in the skies flying the family’s private plane and not in the world of numbers, business mergers and profit margins. Aboard the cruise, his parents even try to arrange his marriage- to the daughter of a potential business partner- to save the family business empire from further losses. The trials and tribulations of the Mehra family are narrated by their family dog, Pluto. Ironically, Pluto seems to be only family member that is in touch with their hearts’ innermost desires even when they are living a life that is oceans apart.
Being on sea away from the usual day-to-day events of life is a perfect opportunity for the mind to relax. The typical ego defenses to allowing deeper healing can come down. What come up into awareness – feelings of anger, guilt, hurt, fear and even unworthiness- often does not look pretty. There can be a temptation to ‘stuff’ all of this down again. Yet deep at our core, we all want to be free in a real, authentic love, and not chained to an image of love. We don’t want to pretend that we are happy. We want to be truly happy.
Here is a beautiful song that depicts a scene shot in Turkey where the protagonists are ready to find a new way to relate to Life yet not sure quite how. We can see – as they gather for a group photo – how the old persona no longer serves. Yet they try to hide it by smiling. But we can feel the pain underneath the smile. There are not subtitles in this clip, but human emotions need no translation. Feeling lost and confused with pain is something we all can relate to. In this scene, there is also a part where the key protagonists in the movie watch a performance of Sufi whirling dervishes. As the dervishes twirl in peace, love and harmony, it is as if they invite the protagonists to enter that place of stillness within- where we can find all the answers we seek, where Love resides. The Love that can comfort, empower and heal. The Love that waits not on time but our welcome and acceptance.The Love that can set us free.
You can rent this movie on YouTube, Amazon Video, Google Play, and iTunes.
If you feel inspired to watch the movie, I invite you to curl up with popcorn or whatever snacks and beverage you prefer, and first simply watch and enjoy!
Perhaps later you can use the questions below to go deeper:
- Where in my life do I feel safe to be myself? With whom? How does that feel?
- What if I were willing to allow other relationships in my life to be a place where I can be real, and truly myself and allow others to be the same?
- How would that feel?
- What are the barriers that prevent me from doing that?
- Choose one or more relationship in your life that you want to allow for some healing.
- Am I willing to allow myself to give this relationship over to my Inner Guide, so it can be healed? This does not even mean I need to ‘do’ anything different right now. Just that I am willing to give my relationship a new purpose. A purpose of true joining and sharing. A place where we both can feel safe to be real, honest, loved and accepted for who we both are.
- Allow yourself to journal whatever thoughts, ideas and feelings come up for you. See if you can also share with a trusted friend who can hold a space of Love and acceptance for you.
I would love to hear back from you about what you find or any other comments you want to share!
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