The Pretty Woman star began shooting Eat, Pray, Love at Ashram Harimandir in Pataudi on Sunday (20Sep09) - and she met with the sacred site's chief official, Swami Dharam Dev on Monday (21Sep09) to ask him for his blessing.
Film insider Rajan Zed, tells WENN, "When Julia went to seek his blessings, Swami was quoted as telling her to step into sadhvi’s (virtuous woman) role in her real life whenever she was in self doubt.
"Swami also reportedly suggested her to adopt prayers, meditation and yoga in her real life and take all good things she learned at the ashram back to the U.S.A.
"She reportedly introduced her children to Swami with the names of Mahalaxmi, Ganesh, and Krishna Balram. Swami reportedly tied raksha-sutra (sacred protective thread) on their wrists."
The actress launched the filming with a hawan fire sacrifice and cooked dal-roti (bread) for a community lunch at the ashram.
She also took part in religious chanting and offered prayers, along with her children and told religious leaders, "India is really amazing."
Zed, a leading Hindu statesman in America, has applauded Roberts for her devotion to Hinduism as she starts shooting: "She's actively participating in it with her three children, and showing keen interest.
"The people of India will be anxious to see how perfectly Roberts does her job of cleaning the ashram as a part of her devotional duty, recites the 182-verse Sanskrit chant, and masters meditation in the film."