Year: 2016

The Traveling Jain: An Icelandic Adventure

Iceland is truly out of this world. I am pretty confident there is no other place on this planet like it. Known as ‘the land of fire and ice’, Iceland’s landscape and environment is incredibly enchanting. From volcanoes to glaciers, bubbling sulfur pits to geysers, pillow moss to reflective fjords, cute puffins to fuzzy Icelandic horses, black sand beaches to green fields…Iceland is a destination for the adventure seeker and lover of the unexpected. After graduating from Pepperdine University in 2014, my best friend Haley and I embarked on a post-grad trip to Iceland and Norway. Little did we know what was in store for us. We booked our flights and a car…and that is about all the planning we did! As the adventurous souls we are, we decided that we wanted to see the entire country in 7 days. So we embarked on the Ring Road, driving the entire perimeter of the country! We completely unplugged ourselves from our worlds, traveling without any GPS, internet, cell phones, or itineraries. And that was probably one of the best decisions we …

What is Jainism?

Jainism is one of the world’s oldest religions, and simply stated- a way of life; the Jain faith is set apart by belief in and adherence to principles of non-violence (ahimsa), non-absolutism (anekantvaad), and detachment/non-possessiveneness (aparigrah). Ahimsa extends to every form of life and refers to the abolition of violent thoughts, speech, and actions; this principle encourages universal friendship (maitri), benevolence (pramod), compassion (karuna), and forgiveness (kshama). Vegetarianism is a fundamental tenet of Jainism, based on the ideology that every living being in existence possesses an eternal soul; the preparation and consumption of a Jain diet involves minimizing violence, accepting only what is indispensable for human survival. Anekantvaad refers to the multiplicity of viewpoints; to understand the complete truth, every individual’s perspective and aspect of a given situation must be considered; this principle encourages tolerance, harmony and peaceful coexistence. Aparigrah refers to detachment from worldly possessions, along with the overcoming of inner vices that contribute to uncontrolled desires; this principle promotes selflessness, generosity, and philanthropy. Jains believe that attachment and delusion (moh) is the leading …