Reaching Haridwar in the early morning, and having some peaceful
moments at the ghats. This is where generations of Hindus come, in
birth, life, death and after life.
For those who live in the physical plane, the ceremonies and rituals
here form an important part of who they are.
For me, it was also a way of respecting the sentiments of my family
members, as this is how those who passed away would have wanted it,
and this is how those who live on, will like to pay their respects.
So, though, one may not believe in all these things, as part of our culture,
we have to do some things…
But there is another aspect of Hari-Ki-Pairi of Haridwar which I discovered
over the years.
I take the night bus to Haridwar from Delhi, and then have a dip in the Holy Ganga
in the wee hours when most are sleeping, (it is chilly) then climb up the Mansa Devi
and wait…amongst the trees and mountains.
Wait for the sun to rise over the Himalayas.
And it reminds me of something much more profound..something beyond the
physical, a unique gift,..a view of the world through ‘God’s’ eyes.
This is the way the creator would have wanted it to be, this is the way he must have wanted us to perceive it.
And then I remember the great words of the pioneer of photography-Alfred Steiglitz.
“Standing up here, on the hill,” he wrote to a friend in 1920, “away from all
humans-seeing these wonders taking place before one’s eyes-so silently-it is
queer to feel that beyond these hills there are humans astir-and-just the reverse
of what one feels in watching the silence of Nature.
No school-no church-is so good a teacher as the eye understandingly seeing
what is before it-I believe this more firmly than ever.”
Try it some day…Sunrise from Mansa Devi Haridwar…It is a life changing experience.