The White Hindu has moved

The White Hindu has moved! This blog is no longer updated, but Ambaa is still writing The White Hindu every weekday at

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Gaps in my Experience

Last night the boyfriend and I were talking about Alan Watts and Richard Bach. Boyfriend said (paraphrasing...I did not have a tape recorder!) "Alan Watts may have misunderstood or simplified, but he did have a gift for framing eastern ideas for a western audience to understand."

I was suddenly struck with an odd thought.

I do not have this gift!

As you know, I am white. I am pretty white-bread American looking (though my hair is dark, not blonde). I grew up in America and have never lived for any extended period abroad. And yet.

And yet there are places in my brain that are purely eastern.

Because I grew up with eastern philosophy as part of my life from the very first moment, I am lacking some of the normal western mind. This has come up a few times in the past where boyfriends and friends have been startled or confused to find my ingrained assumption of a situation being not at all western. Even my parents have occasionally found themselves surprised by this phenomenon. I don't think they realized that raising me with eastern philosophy was going to shape my brain and how I see the world.

I cannot translate eastern ideas to a western mind because my mind is not fully western. Plenty of it is, of course, but when it comes to philosophy, religion, and spirituality, that's almost entirely eastern.


  1. It is premature to judge yourself. You are still young, and many many more years to mature. Your cultural and social environment is still Western, though your internal neural wiring may be shaped by Eastern Philosophy. It is in the clash of these two systems in your growing up that would eventually let you have the ability to be reckoned with, much like Alan Watts. When you say that you are lacking some of the Western mind, you are implying that you lack analytical abilities. Nothing can be farther from truth. There can be only one Alan Watts. That is the significance of karmic births.

    1. Hello Ambaa: No response from you as to whether you agree with my analysis.

    2. Sorry about that!

      I'm not sure what to say, actually. Since you say I am too young to judge this issue, what can I say? lol.

      I don't think that having a more eastern mindset means I lack analytic abilities.

      I've noticed it most strongly in very basic, underlying assumptions (such as the way my friends often see the world as getting better and making progress, while I see it as running down and becoming more chaotic).

      I don't mean to say that I want to be Alan Watts. It was just something that really struck me when my boyfriend was talking about it. Some people go from a western perspective and start learning about an eastern perspective. Others go the other way. Others have ingrained in them the perspective that is not the one they would be expected to have.

      Food for thought rather than for conclusion, I think.