My name is Simona Rich and I was born in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania.
I grew up with my mother and brother. My father was mainly absent from my life from the age of sixteen, and that was a good thing.
He was an alcoholic, so because of his emotional terrorism the entire family greatly suffered. It sometimes truly felt like living in hell.
(My childhood photo on the left.)
It was my mother who paid the bills and raised us.
Because of the emotional terrorism of my father, I as a child suffered the most because I was the most sensitive.
I suffered from extreme emotional ups and downs, and when in my teenage years (when I was sixteen), due to growing self-awareness and intelligence, I started realizing what such emotional rides do to my body and mind, I started seeking a way out of this unhappy situation.
That’s how I found meditation. The first book that I read on this subject was Deep Meditation by Yogani and it was the only meditation book that I read for many years. It totally transformed my emotional state, and from a girl who was totally controlled by emotions I became calm and in control of myself.
What’s more, yogic powers started developing in me, such as internal heat, which confirmed to me that yoga had some substance to it; though at that time I knew very little of this form of spirituality, and I had no idea that later in life it would become such a big part of my life.
I also was born with the gift of clairaudience, though I still cannot control this experience.
(Me at the age of sixteen.)
At school, I was very average.
But at the age of sixteen I got my first job – at the department store where my mother was the director.
That job was very difficult and it made me realize that if I stayed average at school, I would have to stay stuck in a job as such for the rest of my life.
This was an excellent motivation to start taking my studies seriously. In order to have the best chances of success, I focused only on one subject to master it as best as I could – the English language.
I fell in love with the English language the first time I started studying it. In addition to this, I wanted to leave my country and study abroad, as I didn’t see many ways to succeed in Lithuania due to its economic situation.
Also, most people were very negative there, which can dampen the spirit of even the most positive person. So learning English to the best of my ability in order to get a scholarship to study abroad was what I perceived to be my ticket to freedom.
My daily intense studies brought forth excellent fruit, as I scored 100% in the English state exam – the only one in the capital (and maybe in the whole country) to do it.
Life in the UK
I got a scholarship to study tourism in the UK. There I started a very “normal” life. I was in a relationship, living with my partner in his apartment, watching TV and having an okay-paying job. (I met the ex-partner very soon after I started living in the UK).
But although I was living the life that’s supposed to be normal by today’s standards, I always felt that there’s something wrong with this kind of lifestyle.
I knew it always, that feeling was always in the background of my mind whether I was watching TV, enjoying my favorite M&M’s, taking a stroll down the city streets, or spending time with my boyfriend.
I couldn’t really define that feeling, though. I just knew that I was searching for something, and I thought that I would never find it – I assumed that there’s no answer to that unspoken question.
I was also very much afraid of dying before I understood what I was seeking. The thought of dying was haunting me very often those days, and it only stopped harassing me when I got seriously involved with spiritual development.
So I continued my average existence, though always aware of the fact that something was wrong with that kind of living; that some major part of my life was missing, or that something was hidden from me. Therefore, I’d been a truth seeker since the very beginning, but it took me some time to understand that it’s the truth (God) that I was searching for.
A turn for the better
What really triggered me to rethink my life were two things. The death of an employee at the time of me working in a business call center, as well as the question that reached me out of nowhere, when, one afternoon, I was walking to the bookshop after finishing my call-center shift.
The question that I heard in my head was this:
Is this all life can offer me?
I never thought about such things before, so it felt like the question didn’t come from me but from the outside (which probably is true). It took me out of balance, and although I was pondering on it, I couldn’t really answer it.
I entered the bookshop and started browsing; I would go to that bookshop often those days, but I would never buy anything – I just loved browsing through all sorts of books. But that time a particular book caught my attention, and I knew that I had to get it.
It was Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, and it was the book that totally changed my understanding of how to handle finances, and it was the book that started my journey towards financial independence (and later – spirituality).
Reading such books eventually led me to a similar category of self-help books to do with personal development. That was the new-age type of books, which are good for those who know nothing about how the reality works, but later you realize that they present incomplete information.
I ended up reading hundreds of new-age and wealth books, and due to this I totally changed my life, became emotionally and financially independent, started my own blog, and, when the blog generated enough income, I finally was able to decide where I really wanted to live.
Life in India, love and spirituality
To decide where to live, I asked the Universe for the best suggestion.
All sorts of messages started reaching me about India.
So I took it as a sign that it was the place where I should go. And the day I landed there, it felt like home, which was the feeling I never experienced before, always having felt like a stranger in the world.
It was in India that I started to seriously practicing meditation. There I also discovered yoga, and all sorts of other eastern traditions got my attention, such as palmistry and astrology.
Yoga and meditation, however, remained my major pursuits throughout my years there.
It was in India that I met my first love. He was a karate master, and we were as different as water and fire. Yet I will never forget those days filled with exciting bike trips (he was an excellent motorcycle rider), passionate arguments and sweet reconciliations. He used to describe our relationship as the relationship between India and Pakistan:)
Thus, I was in a relationship with the person that I truly loved, living in the country which was my spiritual home and had a successful business. I had achieved all that I wanted in my life, and those days were indeed like heaven.
I will be forever grateful for the Universe to have allowed me to live my life to the full. All my worldly dreams by that time had been achieved.
I didn’t know it at the time that my boyfriend was a psychopath, and we separated eventually not because of his condition (as at that time I didn’t know anything about psychopathy) but because, due to my deep study of yoga, I decided to become celibate.
He was never able to impact me to any great degree, because my priority was always business and meditation, and after that came him. I believe that psychopaths can only destroy those people who make them their priority.
For me, spirituality was more important in my life than him, and a separation from the person that I loved was a small price to pay for illumination.
And when I understood his condition, I have learnt one of the most important lessons of my life. I will be forever grateful that my eyes were opened to the existence of such type of beings, and spending time with him in general has taught me a great deal.
We can learn not only from those who are good, but everything in life can teach us, every minute of it – if we are attentive. And I cannot even say that I only learnt from him what no to do. He taught me how to get along with all kinds of people; he made me understand how to become a likable personality. But he also made me understand that some very intelligent people use their intelligence only for evil.
Life as a celibate; Indian arts and spirituality
Following my decision to become celibate, I have separated myself from the society more and more. Eventually, I decided to rent a house in a semi-jungle place in South India, without almost any furniture.
I slept on the ground, and my days were filled with yoga, meditation and contemplation. I would sometimes share with my readers what I learnt as well as my spiritual experiences, but I would post only once or twice in a fortnight at that stage.
(Dancing Bharatanatyam with children.)
But my life was not all about solitude. Just before renting the new place, I lived in another location in South India, in a modest hut with a Bharatanatyam dance teacher and her little child.
It was a traditional Hindu arrangement – a student living with a teacher. That woman had taught me so much, and I still keep in touch with that special soul.
When I moved to the new place, the only social thing that I did was to attend Carnatic music classes in a traditional school in the city of Trivandrum.
Indian arts were always fascinating to me, and my strong pull towards appreciating and studying them, together with the pull towards yoga and meditation show to me that it’s very likely that if I ever lived as a human before, I had definitely been Indian.
Needless to say, I was the only foreigner in that school, and in general I was the only foreigner in many places and pursuits whilst in India. Whenever you have a concentration of foreigners in India, the arts or spirituality will be watered down – this is the truth. If you want to experience real India, stay away from tourist spots.
In that Carnatic school I met a special girl and we became good friends.
We would go to the Coffee Day coffee shop after school, order latte, enjoy looking at huge Banyan trees growing nearby, and praise our music teacher for his excellent personality and beautiful voice.
Since I fully followed the doctrines of yoga and meditation, together with strict celibacy, almost no engagement with the outside world and regular reading of Indian spiritual texts, my progress was fast.
Soon I could get into very deep meditative states, my third eye chakra got activated enabling me to see visions and colors.
I quite mastered yoga and I was encouraged by some of my readers and those who knew me personally to become a yoga teacher. That, however, never felt right for me.
Despite of my refusal to become a yoga teacher, I would personally spend sometimes several hours a day practicing yoga.
Due to my studies of Indian spiritual books, meditation and the yogic practice, I was becoming increasingly detached.
Though I was never a person that could be called “attached”, the detachment was definitely increasing.
I could stay alone, without speaking, for days, and there was never any desire to break such silence.
Meeting Indian gurus further convinced me that my spiritual progress was fast.
At the very last stages of awakening I would get people approaching me to acknowledge my spiritual presence. It happened so often that I could not dismiss it as a mere coincidence.
Some people would hold hands in a “namaste” position without even knowing me; some would approach me to express their amazement at the kind of aura/energy that was around me.
By this time I had a thriving self-improvement and spirituality blog.
I was getting around six thousand daily readers, and I had around 45,000 social network followers and newsletter subscribers.
I thought that my new-age articles greatly helped people to find God, and the feedback that I got from my readers further convinced me of this.
An unexpected turn
This page is getting out of hand in length so I detail all spiritual developments in this video, which fully explains what sudden spiritual shift I had to undergo and how it affected me and my public perception:
Buying land in Lithuania, and my current life
After living many years in India, I finally felt the urge to return to my home country. So I returned there in June 2018 and purchased a plot of land in a village near the forest.
I lived there alone, for six months, in a wooden hut, and then felt the need to return to India again. Total solitude affected me quite a lot, making me realize that we are social beings and that we need each other.
It’s important to have solitude, but then this should be balanced with social contact. When I went back to India I started a wonderful relationship after a long time of being celibate, and now we are still together. We both think we are twin souls as there’s a definite spiritual connection between us two.
I also understood why I felt such an urge to buy the land. Thoughts started reaching me about its development without any of my own efforts. It’s as though the Universe itself wants to form it into the place where people can escape cities and pollution and relax for some time and get to know themselves.
That’s how I understood that this place should become the Mindfulness Center. I write about it here.
My story doesn’t end here. It’s an ever-going process. I feel happy with my journey because I always stayed loyal to my conscience. This caused me to develop very fast, sometimes too fast for many people to tolerate or accept. But that is a small price to pay for the spiritual gifts that I received.
I hope that you will learn from my journey and benefit from my attained knowledge and experience; I hope that the information here will help you to avoid the mistakes that I made in my life, so that your growth is faster and smoother.
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