Yes, Manisha is back in shape. Her quest for spiritual satisfaction is now insatiable. Manisha has been a student of yoga and the Oneness meditation course which had changed Manisha’s life completely a few years ago. Now post her illness and healing, Manisha feels more spiritual than ever before.
She is taking time off from Mumbai to be in the US to learn the art of meditation known as Qigong. A complex art of self-awareness it requires intense concentration and energy. But Manisha is game for it.
Says the incandescent actress, “I’ve longed to understand the art of meditation and healing known as Qigong ever since I got to know about it. Qigong is the life-force. It is actually present everywhere in our universe. We just don’t know how to find and embrace it. This course will help me grasp the mystery of Qigong. Even the art of Tai Chi comes from Qigong. It is actually a means to achieve a balanced life and an equilibrium in one’s spirit. It also harnesses the materialistic side of your personality.”
Manisha has zeroed on a Qigong guru whom she will adopt as her teacher during her two-week stay in US. “I am traveling to learn Qigong from Master Nicolas.”
While in the US the actress would also go through her bi-annual post-illness check-up. Says Manisha, “It’s a normal routine check-up. Follow-ups that I do every six months. I feel I’m born again. This is a new me! I cram in a lot more into 24 hours than I did earlier. I appreciate the time that I have far more than I did earlier. I don’t want to waste a single moment. I want to actively promote a healthy lifestyle. But please, I don’t want to be become a spiritual guru! I don’t want to be known as Maa Nisha, (laughs). I am an actress first and last.”
Looking at the nightmare of overcoming her illness, Manisha says, “The kind of stress turmoil one goes through in a situation like this is beyond the imagination of anyone from the outside. Such an experience can kill you even if the illness doesn’t. But then you can look at the crisis as a challenge, take it on and try to defeat it. I’ve always been a fighter all my life. Giving up is not an option for me
My family specially my mother, also my dad and my brother were a big support. They never let me give up. My mom was specially there, always smiling. When I’d be in depression and express my inability to go on bearing the pain she would shake me up saying, ‘Nothing doing. Who would look after us in old age?’ I am lucky to have my parents and brother to see me through this.”
Manisha wants to write a book about her illness, healing and what the experience taught her. “I want to share not just how the illness changed my complete outlook on life, but also how all my experiences in life have benefited and harmed me. I want to tell the world that each day is important and that bonding with your loved ones is far more important than being sweet to strangers. Now every relationship in my life has gone beyond the surface. Now my attitude to being healthy is very different. It goes far deeper than looking good. One has to eat right, exercize, meditate and be happy.”
For now Manisha is not looking for romantic love. “I valued relationships with men a bit too much. Now I feel companionship has nothing to do with the conventional man-woman equation. A friend with whom you are not romantically involved can give you great companionship. Today I don’t need that one companion. At this point of time I am far more comfortable with my family and close friends. I don’t see the need for a lover.”
Then laughing she says, “I hope I haven’t become a saint. But at this point of time a man-woman relationship would be too exhausting for me. My main concern right now is my health, family and friends. If a relationship with a man gives me stress-free happiness I am open to it.