Honestly, I don’t know how this happened but it’s a numerical milestone I’ve reached today, May 30, 2016. I know some of the followers thought this is some sort of dating thing when they liked my Facebook page. Hopefully they’ve had better luck than me with finding their life partner or temporary partner.
Here’s a awesome fireworks video I recorded recently to celebrate this milestone.
When I started this at the end of 2013, it was about sharing my experiences as a solo, single traveller. There have been countless stories, some I’ve shared, some I have not – a few were scary AF which I wish upon no other; all I could now laugh at when looking back. Continue reading →
Today, the day after a new moon, a full solar eclipse and Spring equinox, please allow me to present my new business venture – Spiritual Radiance Tours.
It has been my intention for the past few years to share my joy of travel. Within this time, I wasn’t sure what was the best method, in addition to this blog. The experiences I have gained by combining spirituality and travel has been life changing to say the least for me.
My journeys have taken me to various corners of the world, however, it has also taken me to the deep and sometimes dark corners of my inner world. Aspects of myself that I have neglected or forgotten. Aspects of myself that needed resolution. Aspects that I needed to accept as a part of me.
I am nothing without my past. I live in the present and embrace the future.
This blog started on the Tumblr platform in 2012 and then I joined WordPress when I took an 8-month journey to South America and Asia in 2013.
2014 was another fun, sad, exciting and sometimes scary year for me. I pushed myself in ways I didn’t think I could; mentally, physically and emotionally. I started the year by going from zero to 5 days per week of Ashtanga yoga and become certified as a Yoga instructor after a 250 hour course, over a span of 4 months. Then a 6-month journey showed me valuable life lessons in Europe and Middle East. Continue reading →
Unbeknownst to me, my life really took a turn for the better after my live-in boyfriend of 5-years walked out on our relationship. Until it ended, I did not know I was co-dependent. I did not know it was in an unhealthy relationship, that it was a ticking time-bomb.
That was 10 years ago. After hitting what I thought at that time as rock bottom, I met a series of strong, level-minded women and men who helped me to understand, to acknowledge, to shift and to evolve to the newer me – the current Karen.
Throughout all this, alongside the smattering of boyfriends and flings – was the travels I experienced. Some days, actually there are many days, I can say I felt more comfortable traveling solo, surrounded by strangers, in a strange land.
Life is painful at times, and spiritually, we are meant to face the pains that life presents. In the western world, however, we often misrepresent God’s plan for us and expect life to be comfortable and free of trouble. We measure God’s presence in our lives by our level of personal comfort; we believe God is here if our prayers are answered. But neither God nor Buddha nor any other spiritual leader or tradition guarantees a pain-free life. Spiritual teachings encourage us to grow past and through painful experiences, each of which is a spiritual lesson.
Where do I begin… In March of 2013, I checked into a hostel at the border town of Foz do Iguacu, Brazil. There in the 4-bed dorm room, I found a book on the shelf of the closet. I picked it up, the title of the book “Sarah’s Key” written by Tatiana de Rosnay. I thought to myself, “Why not give this a read – It’s been ages since you last read a book that’s not a travel guidebook.”
I admit I’m typically a slow reader unless the book intrigues me. This was one of those – I finished the book in 2 days despite the fact that I still found time to visit the Iguazzu falls on the Brazilian side and a local Buddhist Temple. The book tells a story of a Jewish girl who lived in Paris, France. On the 16th of July in 1942, the French police rounded up all the Jews in Paris and sent them to Vélodrome d’Hiver (Vel’ d’Hiv). She had locked her brother inside the secret cupboard in their Parisian apartment to keep him safe, with a promise to return. She became a child of the Vel’ d’Hiv roundup.
No other Holocaust story has struck me like this. I cried painfully as though I was the girl in the story when I finished the book. Even when I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau in 2009, I did not react like this. My heart ached. I felt physical pain. I could not understand why the connection. Continue reading →
Ever cross path with an animal or an insect – unexpectedly?! So much so, they startle you and stops you in your tracks??
Be it a spider, ant, frog, dragonfly, chicken, bat, goats.
I don’t mean the animals you see when you go to a zoo or pet store. I mean the animals that you encounter while minding your own business. Like a butterfly that suddenly catches your attention while you are on your daily run. That neighbor’s pet turtle which never leaves their house but suddenly is walking across your path outside.
Well recently, it keeps occurring to me. Animals capture my attention in unexpected locations at unexpected time of day. I jot down the encounters and when I get on the interweb I google them and see what they symbolize as an animal totem. Often times, the meaning as provided are immediate reminders of emotions or thoughts I have been avoiding or unaware of or have not considered. Synchronicity is at play and the Universe makes it hard to ignore. Continue reading →
It’s 3 am and I’m having a rare late night outing. I’ve traveled to Hamburg, Germany to visit a friend I met while traveling through Penang, Malaysia. The one-way flight from Antalya, Turkey cost me only 50€.
Walking through the neighborhood of St. Pauli – throngs of people with drinks and cigarettes enjoy the Friday night with their friends and new acquaintances. I am no different. As we walked from one bar to another I look up and see prayer flags fluttering in the late night breeze.