Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

A Bull Must Find

Mayapur, West Bengal

Clumsily he walked over to what he thought was the source. It was the food he was after. He was staggering from his mother’s front end to back end and back. Still in wonder! A group of monks and I took our usual rural walk. We had stopped by Laksmi Priya, the elephant, who was wielding her trunk about. And now it was this fellow, a one-day old bull calf. The mother was proud of her new-born. Of course, he was beautiful. A Bengali brahmacari tried to come to his aid, steering him towards the udder of his mother but still no hope. One nipple was full of milk content waiting for action. Surprisingly the young bull resisted the guidance.

We were scheduled to move on hoping that by a matter of minutes he would have it figured out.

That was eventful.

Next on the mornings’ agenda was a flag-raising ceremony. Hoisted above a deity of Garuda, the man-eagle, was a long tapered red cloth that flapped in the air and marked the Gaura Purnima Festival, the golden moon Avatar festival. This year claims the five hundredth anniversary of the monastic ordaining of Chaitanya, the father of mantra chanting. It is also the anniversary of the ordaining of our guru as a monk which occurred 58 years ago. And to add to the list the festival itself which attracts pilgrims from all over the world. Unique also was the ground-breaking of what will become the largest domed temple in south-east Asia. Ambarish, also known as Alfred Ford, who told me he’ll turn 60 in 2 weeks, presided over the event. This great grandson of Henry Ford was indeed happy to have begun the project. As he put it, “We’re not getting any younger. The project must get underway.”

As the day came to a closure, I thought again about the starving calf. I do hope he succeeds in finding the source.

6 KM

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