Living the bohemian lifestyle was beginning to wear a little thin and when her father passed away, Margie Gibb found herself facing a dilemma in her life. To continue or to change direction; she choose to set out to travel the world and follow, what turned out to be a lifestyle that challenged her ideas, ideals and the very essence of who she thought she was as a person.
Moving away from Australia to America, which in the 1970’s was considered the doorway to a very different culture and lifestyle, was the first step. While there Gibb studied the sacred art of the mandala and the traditions of the Indigenous Indian peoples. She eventually found herself heading into India. Settling in Dharamsala she worked as children’s carer and music teacher at the Tibetan women’s handicraft co-operative and that is when her life directing really began to change.
Meeting Tenzin, a masseuse in the town, she falls in love but that love is ill-fated as she discovers she is just one of the many women in his life. In spite of this the relationship remains as a constant for more than six years. Yonten, a former monk becomes her friend and also has a massive impact on her life from the spiritual perspective.
Essentially this is a story of self-discovery commencing in 1970 when life was there for the taking, eastern religion was high on the agenda for those seeking enlightenment and travel was a new and readily accessible option.
To travel to India, Tibet and China was something that was almost considered essential when learning about eastern religion, traditional lifestyle and working as a volunteer in small communities was something ‘one did’ on the pathway to enlightenment.
Margie Gibb is just one of the many but in telling her story, in what could almost be considered a diarised account of her daily life, gives real insight into what was involved and perhaps still is today when you choose to walk the pathway of ‘finding out who you are’.
Political references give a very different perspective to the persecution suffered by the Tibetan peoples, a fresh look is offered into life in a third world country and the love and compassion shown by the people she lived and worked with, as they cared for her in times of ill health and distress, warms the heart.
It is a journey of learning, of finding wisdom, of reflecting on life in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s, of rebuilding and seeking out the truth as Gibb, along with a generation of young people, established the pathway to a massive shift in societies values that are still with us today.