Happiness on the Ganga
You couldn't see more excited kids. The big attraction for them was us. Mayapura Tourism Department so much liked our drama performance of "The Three Lives of Bharat" that they wanted to treat our troupe to a boat ride on the Ganga River. It was our option to chant, speak or just enjoy the ride. We opted for chanting "kirtan". That is what riled up the children.
The motorized boat, a rather deluxe one for standards around here, took our 25 passenger crew along the river bank up to the confluence of the Jalangi and Ganges Rivers. As we coasted along the youngsters ran along the banks to keep up with our speed until a fence restricted further mobility. On the west side of the Ganges our gondolier, if you will, coasted there as well, drawing the same kind of attention with youthful arms flailing in the air in ecstatic motion and with voices making prime amplification.
This is India, the place of spiritual appreciation. Kirtan is so conducive in the land formerly known as Bharat Varsh. Where in the world do you find such a large convergence of people at such a time like Kumbha Mela which draws millions.
Our boat passengers exuded a joy through singing and that joy bounced off the spirits of those kids. You are sure not to gain such response from urban kids.
I actually had lunch with Bhakti Raghava Swami, a Canadian monk who hails from my province, Ontario. He has taken the bold step to promote rural life and a dependency on the land and animals. I admire the direction he's taking and giving. Country living encourages happiness. It was evident in the smiles of the children.