“Painting helps me to keep my focus on the Light.”

Lakshmi (Janet) Brown spent her reflection time at the Ashram this winter honing her skill with watercolors and focusing on the Light. The result? A personal art show in Mandala House followed by her donation of the paintings to the bookstore, with proceeds going to the Temple Fund.

“Painting is my counter to the mental work I do with accounting,” Lakshmi explains. “With watercolor in particular, what you put on the paper is what you get. I really wanted that experience with the more fluid medium, which is more challenging for me than the oils that I used to do.”

With painting, Lakshmi wants to express feelings and emotions she can’t put into words. “I never wanted to just paint a pretty picture. I wanted to find a quality. I am so struck by the light – the way it comes through here at the Ashram – that I wanted to paint the light. I particularly like light on the water.”

Involved with Swami Radha’s teachings since 1987, Lakshmi has offered her accounting skills to the work for decades. She also works with Timeless Books and continues helping with Swami Radha’s audio archives.

She plans to take drawing classes so she can work with more detailed images of the goddess Lakshmi. “I use painting as one of my spiritual practices.”

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