Anandway: Blog

Roadmaps to joy!

Shiv Tandav Stotram, Sanskrit video

Sung by Ramesh Bhai Ojha

I heard this first at Haridwar where a couple of teenaged Sanskrit scholars sang this joyously and very beautifully in a tiny Shiva temple on the banks of River Ganga. This was post sunset at Ram Dham, Niranjani Akhara Road. The ghat closes for the night after this evening prayer, and I was about the only one left to witness this beautiful rendition which the boys sang as an expression of joy. It was amazing to hear them sing this Sanskrit stotra written by King Ravana (of Ramayan fame).

Significance of Kumbh – Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

Q. What is the significance of Kumbh?

A. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Ganga is symbol of knowledge and Yamuna symbolizes love.

Prayag where Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati meet, is the unity of love and knowledge.

Where love and knowledge meet, celebration happens.

Kumbh means the coming together of saints, scholars and katha vachaks. They discuss and meditate with the sankalpa that let all the people benefit. People needn’t go to all the places. They can come to one place. The concept of mela started in India. Nowadays we call it expo. There are expos for motors, books, clothes, to present all the products in one place.So also, all the saints congregate in a place once in 12 years. In those days transport facilities were so extensive and traveling would take so much time. Kumbh provided an opportunity for people for dialogue and exchange of knowledge.

If you see it from planetary perspective, when Jupiter enters Aquarius, Kumbh happens.By bathing in the Ganges the chitta (consciousness) becomes happy. The sins are washed away. It's so beautiful. The sins are so superficial that just by a dip in the Ganges they can be washed away. The ever-pure consciousness can never be dirtied.


Tryst with a Ticket-checker on Indian rail

Along with the honour of being the world’s second largest Railway, the Indian Railway also has the distinction of having an abundance of starved TTEs (Travel Ticket Examiners).

Dressed in black, these lean fellows look bright and gay at the start of a journey, keeping both eyes open for prospect victims, in their kingdom for the night. As the night descends, and the train leaves the station, the gentleman in black is the most sought after person on the whole train. He struts through the coaches with a busy look, all the while assessing the number of potential feeders. ‘He is a jolly good fellow… he’s a jolly good fellow…, and so say all the travellers! They sing and dance to his tune, in hope of securing a sleeper berth for the night. More...

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