01 Feb A Spiritual Course in LOVE Helped Me Find My Soulmate at 60
Rose Rouse, 61, is a lady that you’d definitely describe as a free spirit. Aside from her brightly-coloured exterior, she oozes an emotional intelligence that’s quite infectious. But her brilliant sense of humour and bubbly personality weren’t the only reasons we wanted to speak with her. Rather, we were itching to hear about her experience of tantra, discovering Osho and the spiritual course that changed her love life. Drawn to a workshop called the Path of Love (POL), after a series of failed relationships, Rose found that by no longer seeking love, it miraculously found her. Thankfully, she’s just as excited to share her journey from rock ‘n’ roll to romance as we are to hear it!
A CHANCE MEET
A self-confessed hippy and ‘old punk rocker’, Rose began her career as a fiery music journalist in the 80s, during the days of Absolutely Fabulous and Sounds music newspaper. “I used to write for Time Out and interviewed everyone from Germaine Grier to French and Saunders,” she says.
“I was meeting all these amazing people but often struggled to find the right relationships.” On her way back from the shops where she’d gone to pick up a copy of Sounds so she could read her recent gig review, Rose bumped into her future partner – a local musician who lived nearby. “I used to live in this old Vicarage in Shepherds Bush, and Mario and his band would practice just down the road.” Rose and Mario soon got together and continued to live a life full of free music gigs, pirate radio stations and fun with famous faces for four years, before they had a child together. “As soon as I met Mario I knew we’d be together for a long time; he was a very faithful and loyal person and extremely respectful of women.”
In Mario, Rose was certain she’d met her match, so it was a surprise to her when her relationship broke down after 12 happy years. “I didn’t ever expect to split up with the father of my child,” she reveals. “When I reached my 40s we broke up and, even though we weren’t married, it was still deeply traumatic. We couldn’t find a way to communicate our difficulties so I started looking for new experiences, because it was a troubling time for me.” In an effort to recover from the loss she felt, Rose set off on a soul-searching journey to find out more about her true self. “As a young woman I’d had an interest in esoteric things and alternative styles but I didn’t see myself as spiritual at the time” – this soon changed when she met her tantra teacher, Jan Day.
Rose immediately felt comfortable exploring her sensual side as she discovered Jan’s workshops. “I am a natural tantra person,” she beams. “I immediately felt comfortable with the safe space that Jan created and the way she was compassionate about healing sexual wounds now.” Rose attended the tantra workshops alongside other psychotherapy sessions in a bid to challenge her attitude towards love. Hoping to attract a partner along the way, she was pleasantly surprised by what she found instead. “I’d never really had women around me who were in touch with their authentic selves before and it led to me join a women’s group, which I felt very embraced by.”
After a period of internet dating and a string of unhealthy relationships, Rose ended up single for some time, turning her hand to more creative pursuits. “This time by myself was liberating. I began writing poetry, blogs and also played around with my spiritual gifts.” With the help of her new-found friends, Rose went about sending her true intentions out to the universe. “I really believe in the transformational power of ritual, so one of my girlfriends and I did a little love ritual. We made this intention poster, then did a tarot card reading and, finally, I spoke for a while about what I would like from a loving partner – things like open communication and spiritual awareness.” Soon after, the universe must have heard Rose’s call because she happened upon The Path of Love, an international spiritual course she describes as ‘the reviving newcomer to the UK group process parade’. When a psychotherapist friend told her about this week-long workshop full of hugs, prayer and the power of unconditional love, she was first to sign up. “I knew I needed to heal the hurt that had gone before in order to open up to love again,” she says. “I value immensely the power of group therapy; when you share things with people in that kind of way, and you have it witnessed, it can be transcendent.”
THE POWER OF PRAYER
Much like Julia Roberts in Eat, Pray, Love, Rose embarked on her own love story. While on the course she spent a lot of time thrashing out her relationships with others and going within to find her answers. “I was there in Buckland Hall, Wales, one cold November morning with 35 others – men and women, participants and facilitators. On the third day of the course we all had to write prayers down to learn about the power of intention before going on a prayer walk together. There was a beautiful moment when I wrote a prayer of gratitude, and as I was writing it, a rainbow appeared. I knew it was a good sign,” she beams. “The course was created by former Osho devotees 20 years ago. In the mornings we’d have group sharing time, where I told of my feelings of shame that I hadn’t found another man 20 years after my relationship with Mario. Then, in the afternoons, we’d participate in expressive free movement sessions that were aimed at releasing our emotions – that’s when the ‘angels’ (previous participants of the course who return as volunteer staff) came in,” Rose adds. “I’d dance around and then collapse gently on the floor at which point one of the volunteers came to hold me. It was exquisite,” Rose says with a smile in her voice. Little did she know that her volunteer ‘angel’ was also her soulmate!
MEETING MY ANGEL
After spending hours embraced in the arms of Asanga, Rose released past hurt that allowed her to discover what a deep, all-encompassing love felt like. “Asanga was my angel,” explains Rose. “He didn’t approach me during the course, but months later he got in touch and told me he thought I was his soulmate.” Rose was initially unsure, but decided to follow her intuition and took a trip back down to Wales to visit him. “I was taking a bit of a risk but I’ve always been a bit of an adventurer,” she says. “I didn’t fall in love when I first met him but we did have a great weekend just trying to figure each other out.” Rose learnt that Asanga was very spiritual himself and had spent years living in India, following the teachings of Osho. He was a doctor, a mountaineer, a reflexologist and to top it off he even played crystal bowls! “We soon discovered that between us we had a lot of spiritual skills,” she confesses. “We give each other things that I had never experienced before. It just shows that it is never too late to find love!” Two years on, Rose is now in a committed relationship with Asanga and says she ‘has never communicated on such a deep level with another man before’. “It amazes me that even now, we play, laugh and love with each other.” While Rose continues to relentlessly explore herself, she would never have met Asanga had she not had the courage to truly open up to love – a lesson we could all heed.