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Lightness Of Being
Lightness Of Being
In the sunlit north-Indian enclave of Vana, Lucia van der Post discovers health, healing, and spiritual insight.

There are spas, wellbeing retreats, and health resorts—and then there is Vana. Everybody who has ever been agrees that it is different. It is sui generis. A one-off, quite unlike the conventional notion of a wellness holiday.

Set on a hilltop in Mussoorie, some 150 miles north-east of Delhi and close to the ancient Hindu holy city of Rishikesh, Vana is surrounded by 20 acres of deep green woodland. Vana itself means “forest”, and a belief in the power of nature to restore and heal is central to its ethos. The property’s owner Veer Singh had an ambition to create a sanctuary that would have at its heart a “search for equilibrium, learning, and the inner journey”. Though the son of a rich Indian tycoon, who could easily pass his days frolicking in the fancy playgrounds of the world, Singh seems to spend most of his time in the immensely refined and elegant scenery of Vana, doing yoga, meditating, or taking in the words of the spiritual leaders and other experts who come to share their wisdom.

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January 2020