Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Sunday, February 21st, 2016

Sunday, February 21st, 2016                             
Mayapur, India

Suds in the Ganges           

A small contingent of us from Canada met with Mother Ganga (the river of course), to enjoy the cooling effects of her holy waters and to pay homage at the same time.  Every year when you go for her darshan (sacred viewing) you will notice a slight shift in her course.  The main concern for us as we approached her eastern bank was, "Will she be safe?"

Every year a person is losing their life to the Ganges; her water are swift.  Eddies swirl in any direction. The incredible silty mud underneath can pull you in and cause you to sink into its depths, leaving you unable to pull away.

Fortunately there is a designated "safe" area.  Other bathers were there.  My good friend, Ghosh Thakur, from British Columbia, and I observed that the world is there.  We met people from Brazil, Argentina, Europe, America, Russia, Australia, and of course locals.  Despite the signage giving clear directions not to "soap up" in the sacred waters, people do it anyways.  This became a cause for concern and irritation.

"No soap! No soap!"  I cautioned two middle-age men who lathered up from waist to head.  "Big aparadha!"  Aparadha means offence.  I pointed to the Brazilians who had smeared themselves with mud as they were standing by the shore.  "This is the way.  No chemicals.  Ganga Mata doesn't want."

To manufacturers of smelly formulas for a so-called cleanse, all I can say is "look what you've done. You’ve convinced simple people that this is a standard.  When will you become environmentally responsible?"

May the Source be with you!


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