About Ambaa Choate

Ambaa is an American woman of European ancestry who is also a practicing Hindu. She is fascinated with questions of philosophy, culture, and the meaning of life. Join her in the journey to explore how a non-Indian convert to Hinduism experiences her religion.

Diwali 2016

Diwali (also called Deepavali) is here early this year! It is in fact this weekend, at the same time as Halloween.I'm not sure we're going to do anything for it this year. I haven't even put up my lights! For weeks I've been telling myself to get them up but it just feels too hard. I guess having an infant is a pretty good excuse.I want to go to the events happening at the nearby Kali temple, but by the time I found out about them we already had plans to visit my mother-in-law.So … [Read more...]

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Trump Is No Friend To Hindus

I am very distressed to see some of my Hindu friends being taken in by this oaf.He made statements recently that he is a fan of Hinduism and Modi and will stand with Hindus against radical Islamic terrorism. But he knows nothing whatsoever about Hinduism and he has a history of manipulating and lying. He's saying what he knows certain people want to hear. This entire election season he has bolstered himself by supporting people's fear and the hate that fear can bring. It's not like any … [Read more...]

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Thank You, Anu

My friend Anu hosted a wonderful Navratri get-together for our mom's group. Her parents were there and her mother had set up a lovely gollu. It was so nice. I had a great time.Navratri is my favorite holiday and it's so wonderful when you get to participate in it with other people. … [Read more...]

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Navratri 2016

Tomorrow is the start of fall Navratri. This is honestly probably my favorite holiday. I'm not sure why, I just really connect with it.Unfortunately this year I missed both Krishna Janmashtami and Ganesh Chaturthi. As I've said before, it's hard to keep on top of when holidays are when you're living in a community that doesn't share your religion. Also having a new baby has made it hard to keep up with a lot of things in life!So a happy Navratri to you and here are some posts from … [Read more...]

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A Game of Reincarnation

Yes, you heard me right! I am a big fan of tabletop gaming. It is, in fact, how I met my husband. Last week I discovered this new game called Karmaka, which is a card game about evolving from a dung beetle up to moksha.Right now the game is not yet available because the pre-order just ended and it comes out in October or November, but they have a free print and play version on their website. You'll see the cards there are half in color and half in black and white. I didn't realize at … [Read more...]

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Poverty v.s. Simplicity

There's a trend these days to try to simplify one's life and it's an urge I can definitely understand. Excess stuff kind of tugs at the soul, for me at least. Clutter in my living space become clutter in my mind, taking up valuable space in both the mental and physical realms. In fact, I find a clutter-free space to be as soothing to the mind as a mandala.However, a friend recently posted an article written by someone who sees yearning for a simpler life as cultural misappropriation of … [Read more...]

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Balance of Good and Bad

My life has become wonderful. Everything I always hoped it would be. I have the doting husband, my own home, and I'm a stay-at-home mom to the sweetest little baby the world may have ever produced!The weird thing is that since all these things have fallen into place, I've been having nightmares.I'm not usually that prone to them but for the last few months I've been having bad dreams just about every night. And they rarely have to do with anything happening to the baby so I don't think … [Read more...]

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The Peak of Life

Even though a big part of Hinduism is being present and enjoying what is in front of us right now, I struggle a lot not to stress about losing what I currently have.Right now my life is perfection. I have a wonderful husband and a perfect baby. I own a home and write for a living. Everything that I longed for in my teens and twenties has come to me. And I realized that life is not quite like the role playing video game I had imagined. When you are young you plan for and think about what you … [Read more...]

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Are You Not Entertained?

I grew up with a lot of value placed on being present and having quiet times of focus and just being. It is important to have periods of simply existing and connecting with your self and the world around you.Yet even I have fallen victim to the fear of being bored.I pack distractions with me in case of any down time. Books, portable video games, Facebook on my smart phone. I seem to be afraid of any quiet second of just being. I wonder also how much stimulation I should be providing for … [Read more...]

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