About Me


My name is Karuna and I was born in 1948.  I grew up as an “army brat”, traveling from place to place, for the most part moving every two to three years.  My family retired in Florida when I was in high school.  As soon as I graduated from high school, I headed to Seattle to go to college and have lived there ever since, except for one year in the 70’s.  I have Bachelors and Masters degrees in Nursing and have worked in hospital Labor and Delivery Room  and  Postpartum units.  I also was an Assistant Professor at the University of Washington, and a Maternal Newborn Clinical Nurse Specialist at Swedish Hospital Medical Center in Seattle.   I married in 1971 and had two wonderful children, Sreejit in 1974 and Chaitanya in 1977.


My life took a profound change when I began my own personal therapy.  During those years, I worked through most of the anger, fear and sadness that had kept me tied to the past.  I, for the most part, stopped my obsessive thinking and my negative self talk.  I learned to parent myself and my children in healthy ways.

After finishing my own therapy, I started volunteering in our therapy community.  I loved my volunteer work much more than I liked my job, so did what it took to qualify to take the credentialing exams in Adult Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing.  I began a private psychotherapy practice (www.karunapoole.com) and  have been doing that rewarding work ever since.  I love participating in clients’ journeys as they make their way to a full and abundant life.

My life took another major turn in 1989, when I met Amma (Mata Amritanandamayi), a world renowned humanitarian and spiritual leader.  At the time I met her, I had absolutely no interest in anything spiritual. I couldn’t understand why “Yes” came out of my mouth when a friend invited me to go to Amma’s Seattle programs.  My world changed that night.  Six weeks later, I attended Amma’s retreat in New Hampshire, and six months after that I was at her ashram in India.  I have traveled to India every year but two since then.

Amma and me

In the last few years I’ve developed additional major interests:  Litter pick up, cigarette butt pick up, gardening, vermi-composting (i.e. worms!), learning to read, write and eventually speak Sanskrit (संस्कृतं पठामि लिखामि च), and now this blog!

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For many years, I have focused much of my attention on watching for and learning the lessons life sends my way. I love the process of receiving and learning these lessons, whether they be very challenging or easy.  In this blog, I will share my own stories and reflections, past and present, usually taking into account both psychological and spiritual perspectives. My hope is that we will dialog with each other about living, learning and letting go.

199 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Hi.
    I’m really interested in your ‘about’ . I like your blog and your posts! I am also a blogger from wordpress, would you mind checking out my blog? http://www.storiesbysherry.wordpress.com

    P.S. I can’t believe you live in the 1900s! You and your family are sooo lucky! I was born in the 2000s, I’ve always dreamed of being born in the early years!
    Anyway, have fun reading my blog, and keep on writing your awesome posts!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I hope so too… You never know you may be inspired to read my book I’ve just published about the realization that there’s more to me and life that the five senses see… Have a lovely day Karuna, love Barbara x


  2. Your story is very interesting. I started a spiritual journey about a year ago and it has profoundly changed my mindset. I also am looking to move to Seattle, from IL, one day. What about Seattle do you love the most?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What comes to my mind is that there is so much nature. Lots of green, lots of water. Not far away there are mountains. Depending on where you live it is multiracial and generally liberal. There are lots of opportunities here whether it be for work, entertainment, eating, etc.

      Have you ever visited Seattle? Where do you live now?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I live right outside of Chicago and have my whole life. I visited Seattle for the first time, last September, and fell so much in love with the city. Thank you for responding back!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I visited Seattle for a couple days in 1965 and decided the same. I moved from Florida to Seattle in 1966 and have lived here ever since except the one year after I graduated college when I lived in Oakland. (I went there because Boeing had gone on strike and Boeing wives went back to work. There were no jobs here for new nursing grads.)

        Liked by 1 person

      3. When I moved here in the 60’s it was drippy rain most of the time….. Gray sky and misty rain. Weather has really changed. Last summer we had almost no rain and it was hotter than it has ever been. Now when it rains it often rains hard, which rarely happened in the 60’s. Generally Seattle stays fairly mild, rarely any snow at all.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Karuna
    As I read your about me page, I discovered we truly are kindred spirits. I graduated with a masters degree in nursing administration. But, I also spent nearly 10 years in labor & delivery and 3 years managing the adolescent pregnancy unit. Unfortunately, health took me out of musing in 1996.
    Blogging is therapy to me. My hats off to you for all you have accomplished. It was like reading another Eat, love, Pray story.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello! I have enjoyed reading your blog and getting to know you. I was nominated for the peer-generated Liebster Award and have decided to nominate you in return. Should you choose to accept, please click the following link to learn more: https://kinzieskritiques.wordpress.com/2016/04/05/kinzies-kritiques-liebster-award-2016/

    Not a problem if you would not like to accept at this time. I wanted to let you know that I enjoy your blog and would like others to learn more about your blog as well:)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I liked the article, and the main idea of your blog.
    I even age you, but another experience (born in a village in the middle of the underdeveloped mountain, I became a teacher university researcher …)
    I follow your blog
    Welcome écréations see my writings and in mine.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lovely to meet you Karuna. I travelled to India in 2003 to see Sai Baba. I travelled onto Amma’s ashram and saw her there and at a temple inauguration in Cochin. I then went to visit the Tibetan community near Mysore. Amma has been to Ireland a number of times now but I felt I got so much in India, I did not feel a need to see her here. As of the future, I don’t know…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It sounds like you had quite a wonderful trip to India and special times with Amma. Yes, Amma has gone to Ireland quite a few times. I think she goes every other year although I’m not sure.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, its funny I went all the way there to see her. I too had many synchronicities in India. Just started reading some of your posts. I have written my memoir that includes India and it will be published in November. Life changed dramatically after India! Look forward to reading more of your posts. Blessings.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m so happy to meet you through Song Lyric Sunday. I was born just a few years after you and grew up as a marine corps “brat.” Got a degree in psychology and worked for over thirty years as a substance abuse/mental health counselor in a non-profit agency. I LOVE nature and that spiral garden in the photo!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Your life story is pretty amazing and inspirational. It’s just awesome that you have been making an active effort to learn Sanskrit, not many people in the world can do that mind you, really appreciate your effort here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. While I still have a love of Sanskrit, I haven’t studied it for about a year. After five years of study, I still wasn’t able to make it to the end of the 1b level in Samskrita Bharati. I got discouraged with one class after another shooting past me.

      As you may know, many, if not most, of the Indian languages have Sanskrit as a base so the Indian students are able to develop a vocabulary fairly quickly. Not true of Western students, or at least not me.

      I don’t know if my time of studying Sanskrit is over or if I’m just taking a hiatus. For now, my energy is directed towards restoring the forest in the Greenbelt.

      Thanks so much for taking a look at my blog and commenting!


      1. “As you may know, many, if not most, of the Indian languages have Sanskrit as a base”

        Well all the world’s languages have sanskrit as a base, the most close being the Indian languages. Other languages such as English, Spanish and other European languages branched out much earlier when there were first settlements in Europe. Yet still, you’re right when you say that it’s easier for us Indian people to pick up the vocabulary pretty easily. As a matter of fact, I studied Sanskrit as a language till the eighth grade. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s true. I forgot that there is Sanskrit in English although I knew that at one point. My goal was to learn Sanskrit as a spoken language and I haven’t accomplished that, but I thoroughly enjoyed learning what I did learn and wouldn’t be surprised if I start again at some point.


  9. I am glad I found your blog. I find it inspiring. I read ‘Getting to Joy’ a number of times over the years since 2003 and also found that so interesting and inspiring. Thanks for writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you found my blog too. That is how I write now, rather than publishing books! Did you look at the India category? There you will find at least three years of writing about Amritapuri experiences! I think my style is very similar to when I wrote the books, i.e. that mixture of spirituality and psychology.


  10. I was taken back almost a half century when I first saw a photo of you and your friends at the cannery in Fort Valley. I was a very young person then only 12. I remember when the third shift was added. My brother and I took turns working it. My father was the plant manager. Your shift foreman Lowry (not Larry) was his first cousin. I agree with you on the conditions there but would like clear some things, There were never any ten hour shifts unless you were my father who worked many double shifts. Any breakdowns in machinery that were that long, shifts were sent home. We also operated canneries in a small central Florida town “Okeechobee”. This community was mainly white and therefore most of the employee’s were also. Fort Valley is mainly African American and most of the cannery employee’s were Black. Getting on the first shift was simply being first in line at the beginning of the season, My first job there was cleaning rest rooms.
    The plant closed the next year due to Georgia Central Railroad freight train derailing into the plant, the plant was under pressure by the State of Georgia to come into compliance with new clean water regulations. I am sure that you were very honest in your personal experience but I don’t think things are always Black and White but mostly Grey. It was a blast from the past to read your story, I made the syrup and sent it to your “Closing Machine”. Just one more thing , the first shift pitting shed employee’s were almost all Black as they liked being in the open building environment. Hope we can meet some day.

    Liked by 1 person

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