Anjali Sanghi is a very special woman, mother and individual for the choices she has made in life. She is the President and Founder Trustee of Indian Raw Vegan Foundation; her son Manikya who is now age aged seven and half years along with his mum live completely raw-vegan natural lifestyle.
So there’s no cooking for Anjali and her son at home when it comes to their diet. Manikya is in another way different from other kids as he doesn’t go to regular school but is being home schooled by his parents.
Anjali is also an acclaimed artist-painter, natural healer, author and speaker on ‘Natural Raw Vegan Food, Living, Education and Parenting’.
“Manikya was born in August 2008 and underwent corrective surgeries for Hirschsprung’s condition. Around the age of 3 years, he was constantly suffering from immunity issues with high fevers, cough, cold and stomach upsets. I had to keep awake nights carrying him around so that he may feel rested. I started praying again with all my heart- not just for a cure this time, but for the cause and a way to real long-term well-being. My inner voice helped me focus on looking at our diet. Since we were already following several other natural lifestyle practices, I was sure that this intuitive insight was true.
Our previous knowledge of conventional nutrition was not working for us at all. Immediately upon shifting him to organic produce, Manikya was relieved of his severe detox processes of cough, cold, infections and fevers. This brought a lot of peace and rest for all of us. Next, with the recommendations of doctors and our holistic nutritionist, we went sugar- and gluten-free vegan. We were still having several supplements, and I felt that we were still doing symptomatic treatment. The cause had still not been addressed.
After I shifted to a 100% raw vegan diet appropriate for me, Manikya’s transition was an obvious choice. At the age of 4, in 2012 while living in a joint family, Manikya easily transitioned to an age-appropriate high-raw vegan lifestyle as organic fruit just seemed to be a natural choice once it was available in abundance in our home.
His one cooked vegan meal was at school and we sent this from home. We also researched a lot about transitioning children to a raw lifestyle. After receiving advice from experienced practitioners Manikya started to have several days of fully raw food. I could see that he had amazing energy, was expressive, more social, smiling often and was deeply peaceful on the days that he was fully raw.
Manikya continued to be a healthier and successful fully raw vegan as we realized that: ‘A 99 percent raw vegan lifestyle is very different from a 100 percent raw vegan lifestyle’. This has been true in our experience. I have also come to experience this: ‘Our food which comes directly from Mother Nature contains her supernatural powers’. If used wisely, our food can not just be our medicine, but also loving nourishment for our physical bodies and for our whole being- body-mind-soul-spirit.”
“During our transition we were inspired to create delicious, highly nourishing, fully un-cooked whole, allergen free ‘Indian Raw Vegan Gourmet Sweets, Drinks, Chat and Main-course Delicacies’ which we now share through our books.
Our family including myself were initially concerned about how a child would procure nourishment from a 100% raw vegan lifestyle as it was new to all of us. But with study, research, consultation and support it became easier by the day.
So now, me and Manikya follow a fully raw vegan lifestyle right now. All other family members have what they desire or prefer. Several times they follow a high or fully raw vegan lifestyle with us as per their choice.
Manikya has been to pre-school, then one of the best conventional schools in India at the age of 3 years. The teachers have been very supportive during his transition stages
We again started educating him when we started to travel, and took full responsibility of his education ourselves. It is a wonderful experience to educate him. His father calls it Life-education, as he is not just learning from his parents but from whole of life he is leading.
We draw our inspirations from great leaders of education and are blessed to be under the guidance of mentors who are supportive and understanding of our lifestyle choices.
If Manikya chooses to go through formal schooling at any point of time in his lifetime, we would be happy to support him have that experience again.
Our experience in educating Manikya has been a beautiful, soulful and joyful one. It has supported us to understand this beautiful soul who has come to us as life’s greatest gift. We experience the deep trust and faith in our relationship which grows each day.
Though we like to eat simply, initially whenever had to go to a friend’s home, party or a gathering for a longer duration we would make replicas of what would be in the menu there. What can be made in cooked form can be easily made in raw, also and even more nutritious, allergen-free. Also we always eat and go everywhere, thus Manikya’s focus generally does not come to food unless he sees an new dish and tries to figure out how that can be made into raw.
Thus we have been able to create several delicious allergen-free, whole, natural raw vegan Indian drinks, chat, main-course and sweet recipes. Also we all would have observed that during social gatherings, children are more interested in play and not in the food, thus our visits to gatherings is easy. We also travel for holidays across India and attend weddings too, but there hasn’t been a problem.
Manikya is a social child and loves to meet children and people of all ages. Once we chose to educate him at home, this opportunity has widened. Manikya is very confident that his mother is his teacher and he learns from all of life.
We have always wanted him to have reverence and respect for everyone irrespective of their lifestyle and any other background. Thus we see him making friends with everyone- including children and adults. He is also aware that his food, lifestyle and education is different, yet very joyful and has accepted it not through any force but from his inner will. Meeting other children is thus easy as he conveys any answers about his food, lifestyle and education to other children if he requires to. If he requires any help than we are always there to support him.”
Anjali attributes her success to her mother-in- law, mother and Mother Nature, who have always guided and supported her in all her natural endeavors.
“Our child has been our biggest blessing, the answer to our prayers. I always feel that your child can be your best friend for whom you could always have been searching for. She is right there with you and loves you dearly.
As new generation parents, we can support our children by making wise, empowering choices of well-balanced food, lifestyle, education and parenting as per their individual needs; and not necessarily keep doing what worked for someone else, or at some other time on Earth. If we listen and observe; closely and deeply we see that in this ever changing life- change is the only thing which is constant. Let us individually and collectively bring great healing and well-being to our future generations.”
Mums and stories congratulates the mum and kid for their choices in life and wishes them the very best to inspire others.