Friday, March 2, 2012
The magnificence of being a Naga Sadhu..the insignificance of being a widow..
The sight of Naga Sadhus, waiting and then running to take their first plunge into the holy waters of Ganga during the Kumbh Mela, scrreaming 'Har Har Mahadev', smeared with ashes, power and fury is something perhaps as powerful as it is spectacular. Seeing these Sadhus, with their arrogant looking proud faces, running with the Trishul in the hand to plunge into the waters, is something that is so breathtaking that it leaves room for little else. An interesting piece of mythology on these Sadhus goes that there is a rather terrible didvide between the Nagas who worshipped Shiva & the Nagas who worshipped Vishnu. In a fight that took place, the Nagas worshipping Shiva defeated the Vishnu followers. One reason why you don't see the Naga followers of Vishnu taking the holy dip along side.
But rather than the drama that encompasses with these Sadhus, every Kumb Mela comes with it's share of grief looking at the widows who stand in line to take their bath, some waiting to die...for odd reasons, the magnificence of the Naga Sadhus fade into oblivion for me, seeing the stories of indignity writ large on these faces.
( Images Courtesy Google)