The 42-year-old actress, who won a million hearts with Pretty Woman and an Oscar with Erin Brockowich, took to Hinduism
during the shooting of her upcoming film, `Eat, Pray and Love' last
year. In the movie, she plays a divorced woman who travels to Italy for
food, India for spirituality and Bali, where she finds love. In the
interview, Robert also spoke of reincarnation. "I've been so spoiled
with my friends and family in this life. Next time I want to be just
something quiet and supporting," she said.
Swami Dharamdev of
Hari Mandir, Pataudi, where `Eat, Pray and Love' was shot for three
weeks in September-October last year, said it is good news if someone
accepts Hinduism from the heart. During the film's shooting, he said, a
makeshift temple had been constructed nearby where unit members would
light lamps and burn incense sticks. "Julia too would pray there, run
her hands over the lamp and her hair as we all do," he recalled. "She
also got her three kids here. I tied the sacred red thread on their
wrists and applied the tilak on their foreheads," he said.
Swami Dharamdev recalled the actress also requested him, through her
private assistant, to pray for her mother who was ill. "Before she left I
told her, `you may choose not to eat
or love. But don't forget to pray. Make that a part of your life, not
just acting in this film'. She smiled and nodded affirmatively," he
In a statement, Rajan Zed, president of the Universal
Society of Hinduism in the US, also said he and his fellow practitioners
welcome Roberts into the fold.
Julia's move to Hinduism has
sparked off a torrent of online response. Some are highly critical of
her; others the opposite. "Another confused celebrity trying on the
religion "flavour" of the month. Hindu? Does she even know what that
means? How can you convert to another religion after making a film? Next
thing you know she'll be wearing a Kabbalah bracelet after going to a
Madonna concert!," was a comment posted on The Daily Mail's website.
However, Anne, Leicester, wrote, "I like Julie Roberts, admire her work
on screen and her commitment to her beliefs. If she's living her life to
the ideals of Hinduism, that's all to the good. I look forward to
seeing her latest film.