Not sure if the titles sums it up really. I'm a bit "mind blown". Very new, and a touch nervous so this might turn out to be a terrible ramble of a post. For that I apologise in advance (been British in japan too long, apologising for everything is a bad habit). I also know that this is not my blog, but at the same time I just want to get these thoughts out of my head and connect with people.
This is quite new and difficult for me. Well, not difficult. Different, or perhaps non-usual would be more appropriate. The writing of these words is the difficult bit. I want them to be correct, and reflect who I am and where I am right now. But I don't want to waste people's time, so I'll plough on.
I have followed a path from a (white) Christian upbringing into quite a staunchly atheist world view and onward to the doorstep of Hinduism. I discovered Taoism many years ago (early 20s) which certainly played a role in justifying certain laid-back and passive "life choices" I made at that time. But that, like many other things "didn't quite click". Nothing ever clicked. Buddhism whilst certainly appropriate for some people did not (or does not) gel for me either.
Then recently, and I would have to say within the last month, I had a "lightbulb" moment. I can't place how or when, but Hinduism happened. I don't want to say discovered, or converted, or adopted. Nothing really quite fits. This is why I am dancing round the issue like an idiot. It's like it Hinduism has been sat there quietly waiting for me to work something out. I started reading around the edges about definitions, ideas, concepts, "things" within Sanatana Dharma. And these things I was reading echoed with me. I'm sitting there going "oh my god (not literally), I think that too."
At which point Hinduism turns round and says: "oh hello, what kept you so long? Finally worked it out have you? Good good, there's more over there it might keep you busy for a while. I can wait, I've got time."
So I searched, and read, and read more. Then I grabbed a nice podcast/mp3 of the Bhagavad-Gita which I listened to. That in itself was incredibly informative as it managed to put a lot of what I had seen here and other places into a context and form that made sense. Well, it made more sense than divorced lists and bullet points on websites had up to that point.
I am Hindu. That might not sit that well with some people, but I can't help that. I have tried writing this post a number of times, and it is a little odd in some ways. I don't want to sound out of turn and I know that there are many delicate issues in the world, but it feels like I am coming out. Like I said, a once staunch atheist who would laugh and mock and joke about religion suddenly finds himself listening to the conversations of Krishna and Arjuna and in there is peace. Like a sanctuary that was there all along and I never noticed. Another version of me would laugh at myself, but right now I'm okay with that because that's not who I am.
With that out of the way, I can maybe try and find my way through this very deep and rich tapestry. There is a lot to do, many questions that need answering. The only problem is the very limited "real life" resources I have around me, apart from the internet. Even now, I re-read what I have written and I am picking philosophical holes in all the choices I have made in trying to communicate who I am and what has happened. I'm getting there.
EDIT: I reflected and panicked a little about how this post might sound after I posted it. My main concern being that it might come across as a bit tourist/grab-bag approach which is isn't (hey everyone! I did ABC a month ago now XYZ!). I also sound somewhat flippant at times but this is generally a personality trait and not me being dismissive toward people, cultures, approaches, anything. Bit of a defence thing I think. There is more to this than what I chose to post. And I realise and appreciate that I have only just begun to engage with this side of myself and Sanatana Dharma.