(B.A. (English); B.Ed. (English); Cambridge CELTA Certificate (Teaching of English as a Foreign Language)
Veena was born and brought up in South Africa. At the age of sixteen she was awarded an international exchange student scholarship to study for a year in the USA. During this time she met people from all over the world and was consequently inspired to travel more, understand more, experience more. After completing her university studies in 1966, she left South Africa to see the world.
In 1971 she travelled overland on an epic journey through unknown lands to India. This journey is the subject of her first book: A Vanished Road. In India she met her spiritual Master, the enlightened mystic, Osho, in Mumbai – and her life changed forever. She now embarked on a new and different kind of journey: a journey inward, a journey of meditation, a journey of a search for the unknown self. Until Osho died in 1990, she lived and worked in his various communes in India and around the world. Her life with Osho is the subject of her second book: Glimpses of my Master.
After Osho’s death she travelled further east on her spiritual quest, first to Japan where she taught English and explored Zen for eight years, and more recently to China which she visited twice a year from 2008 to 2019 until just before Covid struck. Living in a small, rural village called ShiLiPu, in the foothills of Song Mountain, she immersed herself in the heritage of Zen Buddhism which originated here when the Zen Patriarch, Bodhidharma, sat meditating in a cave on the mountain for nine years. As a result of his meditation he fused Taoism, Confucianism and Buddhism to create Chan or Zen, which the Chinese happily adopted. From the Song Mountain area, Zen then spread to Japan and the rest of the world.
Veena also came into contact with a small slice of contemporary Chinese life − observing, with the help of young English-speaking university graduates, the breathtakingly fast-paced changes from old to new ways of living and the excitement and conflicts consequently arising.
Her experiences in China form the subject matter of her third and fourth books: A Mountain in China and its sequel: Farewell to Song Mountain
Also, at the request of the kungfu master, Master Wu Nanfang, Veena researched, co-wrote and published a book on kungfu called Gulun Kungfu, in collaboration with a Chinese English-speaking kungfu student and the kungfu master.
Veena now lives in Dorset in the United Kingdom.