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Updated: Feb 17, 2022

There is absolutely nothing more powerful on your healing journey than setting an intention for your spiritual growth and wellbeing.

Every six months, I always set intentions for the the year ahead. I do so once during the first month of every year, which has 3 special occasions for me: the New Year, Makar Sankranti (a Vedic Sun festival and auspicious time for new spiritual and educational beginnings) and my birthday. My January intentions usually cover a wide span.

I also always set a spiritual growth intention in July, during the Vedic spiritual festival of Guru Purnima, which honors the light of wisdom, the teachers who pass along timeless spiritual teachings, as well as the inner guru that gives us inner light in times of outer darkness. This is usually one brief sentence intention for my spiritual growth journey.

When I write down my intentions for evolving as a spiritual being, I find it concretizes them and pushes me to make them a reality. Especially when I place them in a place that's visible, to remind me of my soul's quest in this lifetime. Food is a powerful support for manifesting our spiritual intentions.

This rich, thick dal soup is creamy, dreamy and earthy all at once. It includes sweet potatoes, sweet heirloom tomatoes, coconut milk and Ayurvedic super spices turmeric, coriander, and cumin, as well as bay leaves, hing and kalonji seeds.

All of these ingredients help your mind stay focused on your higher intentions, without dulling it. While rich, it's made with masoor (red) lentils, which are highly beneficial for your skin and digestion.⁠

Serves 4.


  • 1 ½ tablespoons ghee or coconut oil

  • 1 tablespoon kalonji seeds

  • ½ teaspoon hing

  • 2-in piece fresh ginger, grated or finely minced

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric powder

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 cup red lentils, rinsed

  • 1 ½ pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

  • 2 large heirloom (or other sweet) tomatoes (omit if you have autoimmune issues)

  • 3 2/3 cups coconut milk

  • ½ cup fresh parsley

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


  1. Select the Saute setting on Instant Pot. Add ghee and kalonji seeds, followed by hing, coriander, cumin, turmeric, ginger and bay leaves. Stir and cook until the mixture is very fragrant, 30 seconds.

  2. Add lentils, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, coconut milk, and 1 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine all the ingredients. Select the Cancel setting.

  3. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure, with a cook time of 12 minutes. Allow a natural pressure release after the timer goes off.

  4. Open the pot and stir well. Select the Saute setting, allow the dal to come to a boil and cook for 3 to 4 minutes to thicken it. Discard the bay leaves.

  5. Add parsley and 1 tablespoon lemon juice.

Before you take your first bite of this beautiful meal, really make an intention to give gratitude for all the abundance of the food you're about to consume, for its taste and flavors, and for the gift of health it shall bestow you with.

To learn how to make this and other wonderful recipes (and cook along in your kitchen), as well as immerse yourself in Ayurveda lifestyle, do also consider joining The Ancient Way's Wellness Ambassador Program starting March 26th, 2022, to heal yourself and spread the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda in your community.



ANANTA RIPA AJMERA is founder and CEO of The Ancient Way and Advisor of Ayurveda at THE WELL, a modern wellness club that brings together world-class doctors and master healers for a more balanced you. She is author of The Ayurveda Way, a compilation of 108 simple, doable practices for better sleep, less stress, optimal digestion and more.



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