Be the Woman You were Born to Be with Guru Kaur

Guru Kaur's Blog

Before It's Too Late...

Monday, 22 August 2011

chaucer-leftWhen we first created Be the Woman You were Born to Be as an online course and community I wasn't really sure how it would compare to the many live Be the Woman... workshops which I had led. Sure it would mean that women all over the world would be able to participate, in a way which worked for them, but would we be able to maintain the intimacy and respect? The answer has been a resounding yes.

There has though been one downside: you can start whenever you like. And I never anticipated that that could be an issue. What I've learned is that when I used to travel through a city to do a workshop, there was a now or never attitude which often tipped the balance into getting a woman to consider whether she could benefit by improving her emotional literacy as a woman. Now though the option remains of living on the never-never. Until it's too late.

That point was brought home to me this week when a woman who is going through a deep crisis asked me if she would benefit from Be the Woman... Of course, I replied, every woman needs to learn this stuff; I consider it the minimum requirement for any woman...

Well, what did you expect me to say? She expected me to say that she was different, her problem was special, hers only, no one else had ever gone through what she was going through. If only she could have removed her arrogance as enthusiastically as she had walked into this problem, she might just not be in the terrible dilemma she is in today.

It comes back to me again and again how little we as women are taught to be women and how much we are expected to know as women. The very seed for Be the Woman... was sown when I was sitting with an incredibly inspiring and powerful woman in her own right who told it to me straight as no one else had ever dared: "You have not scratched the surface of what you can achieve by being a Woman."

That advice, which only a woman can give to a woman, changed my whole perspective: I thought at the time that I was highly successful with all the external signs of that of a great husband, home and career. But she was right, I just didn't have a clue about the basics, and it took a lot to take that onboard. Until then I had not considered that being a woman, in and of itself, was an art, a science, and a way of being.

I'm telling you this now because here we are at the height of the summer holidays, lulled into that false sense of security that they go on forever. But life's not like that. Unless you decisively act to make your life better then it will go on just how it was. I'm still amazed how few women actually put sorting themselves out as such a low priority in their lives. Until it's too late...



You Tell 'Em, Mama

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

David Bebber for The Times

Yesterday I was called as a witness to give evidence to the impeccably impartial Planning Inspector, appointed by the Secretary of State, to assess whether the plan for our local area, put forward by Southwark Council, was appropriate. The plan is for dense and high rise buildings on the last remaining undeveloped land round here. My vision is for the whole area to be turned into an Arboretum and Ecological Sanctuary.

As I sat in that room, all set up to be official, in Southwark Council's offices, I couldn't help but feel that we were fiddling while London burns. The plan we were discussing was totally retrospective, a throwback to the corporate self-aggrandisement of the 1980s. Looking around at the vacant and smug faces of the suits (male and female) I pondered if the greed in the room was so different to that looting which was going on in the High Streets and Shopping Centres of Southwark.


Home Sweet Home

Sunday, 17 July 2011

'In the Gorgeous East: The Entrance to the Golden Temple, the Glory of Amritsar', 1906

Forget that the Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab is the most beautiful building beyond the imagination.  Forget that it is considered the Heart Chakra of this planet, probably the only place in the world where there is constant recitation of sacred texts and the name of God on everyone's lips 24/7.  Forget that this thread of daily, nightly, minute-by-minute devotion has been spun unbroken for centuries.  Forget every photo you've ever seen of it in your local take-away.  Forget all that.

From that moment when you first arrive at the whole Golden Temple Complex, leave your shoes in the 100% reliable filing system, wash your feet in prayer saturated water, and then walk through the thought-bleaching, nirvana (beyond colour) inducing, glaringly white marble and down the steps to bow, head down, everything begins to shift.  Then the moment.  Slowly...


The Luxury Money Can't Buy: Community

Meditation in the Park 2011 was an extraordinary day, permeated full of such sweetness, warmth and pleasurable happiness which we often dare not to imagine is possible in our modern phrenetic world.  And yet it happened.  2000 people came together in a South London park to enjoy life, to experience good food, green spaces and a clear mind.   

To read the feedback and see the photographs please visit the Meditation in the Park web site.  


Community Making Days

Friday, 10 June 2011

Sewing and meditating are two of my favourite things, and here we're bringing the two together. I hope that you'll come along to Russia Dock Woodland on 26th June for Meditation in the Park and sit on one of these beautiful mats. I just love how the coffee sacks have come round the world as packaging and here we are stitiching them to some of the most beautiful English interiors fabric.  Classy!


Sweetness and Light

Monday, 09 May 2011

Globe Pond, Russia Dock Woodland

Yesterday over 50 people came to Russia Dock Woodland to enjoy Photography in the Park led by Nick Fleming, my husband.  We served biscuits I had made and returned with a tin which didn't even have any crumbs left in it for Millie-Pup.


Portrait of My Mother

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Portrait Of My Mother

"It's not very flattering, is it, as a portrait of your mother" said the man standing next to me as we both looked, somewhat dazed and confused, at Juan Gris' Portrait of Artist's Mother painted when he was at the height of his Cubist phase.  

And yet, within that major Cubism retrospective of the early 1980s it is that painting which most got me thinking about the relationship between the artist and his subject, his subject and her beauty, the painter and his projections, the viewer and the work of art now hung on a gallery wall, framed and insured for millions and millions.  "Your mother wouldn't like it if you painted her like that" he continued, with the sure knowledge only a husband can have.


To Eat is Human; To Digest Divine

Thursday, 03 March 2011

Parmesan & Lettuce Soup

It's official: it's been the gloomiest winter on record here in London with washed out, opaque heavy skies hiding any hint that there is, really there is, a sun out there which shines even when we don't see it. It's a leap of faith I know to believe that it's there, but it is. The lacklustre heavens though do more than dampen out all the colour from our lives; they make everything look drab, not that the objects are washed out but the light begins to play tricks with us so we start to see the world through greyed out eyes. Either you fall into the trap of getting all depressed, or you rise up to find inspiration in the most unlikely places.


The Celebrity of Timeless Beauty

Monday, 14 February 2011

Greek_Play_Helen-PosterThere's nothing new under the sun.  No, really there isn't.  Every drama that unfolds, be it in real life, on the silver screen, the boards, or on the box, in 3D, HD or in the flesh, it's all been done before.  Whether it's tragedy you're after, comedy, soap operas, or even reality TV, pretty much everyone got there before you, most likely Shakespeare, that genius of the Play of Life.  But even the Bard wasn't always the original and often had to doff his cap to those who were there at the very inception of modern day theatre a couple of millenia ahead of his game.  


Beyond Searching for Lost Time

Thursday, 03 February 2011


Mention Madeleines, those yummy little lemony cakes, in intellectual company - you know the type who read good-for-you classics - and invariably the conversation turns to that exalted moment in Proust's magnum opus, In Search of Lost Time, when he discovers the key to his Universe when served a Lemony Cake (Fr: Madeleine):


Brompton World Championship 2010

Friday, 31 December 2010

Guru Kaur crossing the finish line... I love my Pink Brompton, the iconic British designed and built folding bicycle.  It's how I potter around Rotherhithe, along the River Thames, through Russia Dock Woodland, and to teach Yoga at the Farm.   Most Saturdays we fit it with wicker baskets and venture off a mile or so upstream to Borough Market and Maltby Street for our weekly food shop.  Occasionally we put our Bromptons in the boot of the car when we go down to the beach so that we can bicycle along the cliff paths before having a Cream Tea and then going for a stroll in the sunset with the sand between our toes.


Meditation in the Park 2010

Saturday, 10 July 2010

MeditationInThePark_2010_-7932_300wMeditation in the Park this year was glorious, full of intense sunshine and delights.  All the organisers hope that it inspires you to see the world a bit differently and make changes which allow you to enjoy it more.  You can download for free here what you learned (or missed!) on the day and take the new experiences from Meditation in the Park further.



Thursday, 22 April 2010

Clear Blue SkyFor what seems like forever, but is probably only just over a week or so, here in London we've had days of eternal sunshine. The English weather does things like this so really it's not that surprising. But it's been very special. It's been silent.


gk-teachingI taught a powerful set of Kundalini Yoga at Living in Oneness in London in October 2009.  Afterwards I recorded an audio guided version of the class, with music specially composed for it by our business partner, Hari Karam Singh.  Please accept this gift to yourself...  NB it doesn't work if you don't do it!

Please download it here


The Only Secret of Beauty

Friday, 18 September 2009

Spring brings with it new shoots of green, announcing the potential for the summer ahead.  Asparagus just sums that up so well!  I have just entered this tart in the March Food Joust on the Foodie Blog Roll, the forum for Food Bloggers. It requires that you make a dish using three ingredients. This month they were almonds, asparagus and lemongrass. Here's my entry: Asparagus and Lemongrass Cream Tart.


Moving on Extreme Victims

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Last week I was a guest at a Mini-Conference hosted by Concordis International, on how to address breaking the vicious cycle of conflict.  It dealt with real life in its raw and dirty details which no one wants to know about and few could even dream up to make into a Hollywood plot. The starting point was understanding the extremes of victims and the way out through communication.



Heaven is Gratitude Not Guilt

Monday, 23 March 2009

There's no quicker way to find out what issues people have, in life as well as about food, then to serve them chocolate. Chocolate's been demonised and idolised; it's been the object of denial and obsession; and everyone has an opinion about it. Please don't blame chocolate when you're looking in the mirror and wondering "does my bum look big in this?".  If you ate more than one...


Yesterday we all went off to Waterstone's in Ealing for the book signing of Nidar Singh Nihang and Parmjit Singrh's book In the Master's Presence.  Millie waited so patiently outside like a true groupie and then fell in love with a real gentleman. 


Cows and Canary Wharf

Friday, 20 March 2009

If you thought that the only place to be in Spring, my dear, is Paris, well think again.  This year, Spring has arrived in London with all the warmth of summer's promise, the expansive blue skies of infinite potential, and the fresh vitality that signifies the end of winters' past.  It was time to get out there and check out what the trees are wearing this year, and how this year's rendition of spring's birdsong compares with previous number ones.  There's a rather incongruous melange far beyond what you normally expect from a City.


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With love, blessings, gratitude,
Guru Kaur x