INSPIRERs - Ritika Mittal of MORA

Friday, July 17, 2015

Here's the poster girl that inspiration might have well chosen for herself.
Ritika Mittal of Mora needs no introduction.
When she announces her annual online sale people who have spent a year maybe 2 or 3 saving to buy a piece of art - a MORA saree - that she created, drop everything else in a mad rush to be that 1st person who lays claim to the only piece with her name on it. Because it is truly 1st come, 1st serve and there is truly only one piece ever created. No reproductions, no 2nd editions - Just one piece of art that you get to call your own & when she sends it to you - she sends it with a handwritten note, which she sits down and writes herself.

Nothing about her work is assembly line. Everything about her work is aspirational. That she dances where angels fear to tread, that she revives dying forms of textiles and weaves that would have never seen light of day were it not for her, that she mixes and matches like rules didn't exist.
That she lives most of the year in a mobile van travelling to where no public transport ever goes and places which have seen no electricity in this day and age.  

I was hoping Ritika would say a yes to being part of this series & in a second she did & reading what she sent gives me the goosebumps. Whenever I feel doubt or a lack of courage this is the post that I'm going to come back to.
So here is Ritika Mittal for you - telling you how she does what she does best. I had asked for 3 things that she has learnt in her life. And here is what she said:

The idea that there is a wrong and right limits us.
This is born out of conditioning of our birth, upbringing and the choices we make based on those. 
Its an absolutely woohoo moment when you suddenly see there are really no set rues to live by.
Your start taking your life as your own. the choices thus you make as your own. the responsibility and accountability your own. the laughter and tears it brings your own. You start to be your own. 

Yes, many times you will have cold feet. Many more times hot flushes. Many break downs.

But then, there are many more "yesssssss", "ooooooops i did it, how??... anyways", "so its possible",  "i said something to myself that's so new, i am loving it", "bring it on baby"!!
And that rush, that euphoria of following your heart and doing things you always wanted to do... is priceless. Cant tell it in words! its like you take that big leap of faith and jump... that one long jump... and see yourself floating thereon... forever flying... its like you have exchanged the wind for the land below your feet and you see all you wanted to always do was to fly and now you are flying... an endless beautiful flight... and thats how you are going to go... doing what you always wanted to do. ! Its that absolute sense of completeness, the becoming of you!

People tell me all the time... you have an easy life- no home, no marriage, no children. you are lucky! 
I want to say, we are all lucky. we can all have easy lives. 
We just got to make choices. Choices that make us happy. Choices that make us feel complete. Choices that are driven by WHO YOU ARE and not WHAT YOU SHOULD BE! Choices that give us the strength to get up and say, this is my life, i decide.

So not once we have to say, "oh, i wish"!!
not a moment of envy!
not a moment of regret!
Imagine a space like that!

And its possible! its possible when you take courage to be yourself! To hide nothing! To be same inside and outside! To let go of the fears. To accept life and love as it is.

I was born in a small village in punjab into a joint family that followed strict rules for everything. 
Today, I am 32. I started working at 14. I worked in media and did night shifts. I was paid in 6 figures towards the end. Left it overnight for the love of travel. Got married and stayed married for 3.5 years. Left in love. Found more love.Life on the road is such. Found textiles as my medium to express. Travel as my lifestyle. 

Now i am part of the stories we read in anthropological books. Its beautiful out here!

When friends ask me how you did it... i say just jump! don't think just jump! and believe in the jump!

Believe that there is no universal right or wrong. Its just our perspective that makes a difference.

One practice that i follow religiously in life is not to overthink. The moment love happens with anything, i follow it with love! So much love that it becomes me and i become the love!

Overthinking makes us cautious, fearful.

I believe we can totally live by the moment. and its possible. a life of no certainty is possible! 
Before you even know, whatever comes your way will soon be more exciting than knowing what you are bringing on!

I am a creation of life. I can not create. I can merely express. So, i choose to express freely. with abandon. without rules. without timelines and deadlines. Without the wrongs and rights. without the dos and don'ts. Without the fear and limitations. 

With nothing else but love!

And love is all it takes to be you!

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