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 Natural Awakenings Lancaster-Berks

Linnea Lindberg Jepsen : Life Lessons Well Lived

Apr 30, 2013 03:09PM ● By Linda Sechrist

Linnea's Kitchen, Yummy Ayurvedic Recipes and Life Lessons

While writing her recently published cookbook, Linnea’s Kitchen: Yummy Ayurvedic Recipes and Life Lessons, Linnea Lindberg Jepsen found it easy to weave her beautiful pearls of wisdom among the recipes for her signature dishes. The reason was simple—she had learned so many of them during her 80 memorable and purpose-filled years. A significant number of Jepsen’s most rewarding experiences that yielded notable lessons occurred during the nine years she was active with the Landmark Forum. This was where she first heard the words, “You are a powerful woman.” The phrase became a mantra, deeply imbedded in her psyche, that she passed along to other women.

In today’s world, where change is the norm and constancy is nearly extinct, Jepsen easily stood out. She lived in the same house for 53 years, where she raised her six children and taught vegetarian cooking classes for 27 years, as well as Svaroopa yoga classes for 14 years. She often joked that she had spent 95 percent of more than five decades in her kitchen, and laughed heartily while disclosing that her children collectively asked that she leave instructions in her will to keep the home in the family after she passed away.

Jepsen was blessed with many attributes that helped her to age gracefully. She had great foresight and knew that by staying physically active, whether it was playing tennis, biking, walking or practicing yoga, she could remain flexible and strong into her golden years. Her common sense afforded an insight that she counted on—looking good meant feeling good—which is why she took great care in coordinating the colorful and attractive wardrobe that kept her fashionable and appearing far younger than her age. By adopting the mantle of lifelong learner, she anticipated that her mind would remain sharp, and it did.

Jepsen favored two mentors who inspired her to take responsibility for her health and well-being, expand her consciousness and develop her spirituality—Dr. Vaidya R. K. Mishra, an expert in Ayurveda, and Maya “Mother” Tiwari, a Vedic monk who traded her monastic lifestyle and moniker of “Her Holiness” for a simpler and more accessible life. Jepsen spoke lovingly of Mother as her guru and relished any opportunity to be part of her Wise Earth School of Ayurveda.

Courageous, and never afraid to reinvent herself, she learned how to cook vegetarian meals and taught cooking classes for a living after her divorce. At age 66, after practicing yoga for 16 years, Jepsen enrolled in yoga teacher training and at 78, became an author. Just months before reaching 80, she was planning for a fourth endeavor—to learn to use social media and other sales and marketing tools to promote her cookbook. Success was well within her grasp—her first printing of 500 copies has nearly sold out.

Only a week shy of her 80th birthday, Jepsen commented with great enthusiasm, “I wrote the book because I wanted to teach forever.” Although she passed away shortly thereafter, through her life history, which demonstrates two of humanity’s greatest lessons—How can I serve? and Giving is receiving—Jepsen’s spirit will teach every time she is remembered and talked about. Judging by the number of hearts she touched, those life lessons will be recounted often.

Linnea Lindberg Jepsen (April 1, 1933–April 11, 2013) died at age 80, in her Wyomissing residence. To purchase Linnea’s Kitchen: Yummy Ayurvedic Recipes and Life Lessons, contact Sunbury Press at or for bulk, wholesale orders, call 717-254-7274.

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