What limits us? Is it age, gender, money? What if it’s all three and you still decide to take on the impossible?
This is exactly what Carol Fraser did after befriending Chetan, a local rickshaw wallah working in the northern city of Manali in Himachal Pradesh, India. At the age of 76 she embarked on a mission to build a house for herself, Chetan and his family of dalits, formerly known as untouchables. Together they hatched a plan to build the house of their dreams, funded by an altogether alternative money making scheme, a journey into the high Himalayas and the friendship of a taxi driving monk.
From the moment I read about Outcaste in the film festival programme I knew I had to see it. I was intrigued by this woman Carol Fraser and her journey. I was intrigued by the decision to opt for faith over practicality and I wanted to explore a faith that I had little knowledge of.
Outcaste allowed me to do all these things. Set in rural India the beautiful, majestic landscapes radiated a peacefulness and serenity as I watched Carol meditate in the hills in pursuit of her dream home.
I am not a Buddhist or have any great knowledge of Buddhism but I was captivated by the unshakeable faith of Carol. Her belief that a journey of meditation and reflection would aid her home being built is something that many would find ludicrous. So often in life we opt for practicality, Carol however believes that by making a request to the universe and believing it will happen, regardless of the path, the universe will deliver.
Due to this unwaivering faith there is a calmness that runs through the film. There is no stress or anxiety because ultimately Carol believes that her plans will come to fruition.
Our theologies may be very different but on leaving the cinema it was hard not to be impressed with the faith of this woman.
Outcaste is a beautiful documentary that I would heartily recommend.