Recently I was having an interesting conversation with my mom about my romantic history. It made me realize something.
I've always said that my greatest dream in life is to have a husband and children. I've wanted that for as long as I can remember. Being married is hugely important to me. And yet, it turns out that it is not the most important thing.
My mom observed that my religion has been a detriment in my dating life. Not for everyone I've dated by any means, but it has made it more difficult to find potential partners. Knowing that only 0.4% of America is Hindu, it seems to me that the average American man is looking for a woman who is vaguely Protestant.
If I were able to be content with being a Christian and maybe not even going to church much, my dating pool would be much, much larger.
My devotion to my religion has kept people back many times.
And so my mom expressed regret that she had raised me they way she did. Maybe, she thought, she and my dad should not have instilled Hindu beliefs in me.
That's when I realized that my religion is more important to me than anything. I would not trade it to make finding a husband easier. I would not trade it for anything. Without those beliefs, my life would be without purpose and without meaning. I don't want to live that way.
Because I believe in reincarnation I truly do believe that I have had families before. I have had husbands and children many times before and I probably will again. If I miss out on that for this one little lifetime, it's not really that big a deal.
And that desire for a family is a matter of biology only. It is evolution working in my body.
The goal of achieving enlightenment is so much bigger and more important than that. Husbands come and go, they don't go with you when you die. I need to focus on the things that are eternal, the things that will come with me.
This is not to say that I don't still hope to someday get married and have children. But it was a big moment for me to realize that it is not my number one priority. It's just something that would be nice to have. My focus is really on my own soul.