Tuesday, September 15, 2009

23 August - Haridwar to Rishikesh

I left Ram Dev ashram at 4:00pm. Took a bus to the Haridwar bus station. Took a connecting bus to Rishikesh. Passed Harki Poch Palace (this is where the enchanting Aarti celebration takes place in Haridwar) As we drove, on the upper hill, I saw the Mansa Devi temple standing in her splendour. I am making an intention to go there. The two other old temples in Haridwar are the Chande Devi temple and the Bharat Marsha temple. In the bus i met Krishna; a local who was very helpful. I am now at the Art of living Ashram in Rishikesh. Lets see what happens: 19:45 - Had a nice cold bath. (its hot here....about 35deg celcius) Needed it. :) The marble floors here are very attractive and clean. I walked to Swami Dayanand Ashram for the ganga Aarti. It was said to start at 6:30pm. I walked until i could hear the sound of rushing water. Behold the Ganges, about 5 meters ahead of me. Racing down its steep banks. This was the closest i had gotten yet. So beautiful. So majestic. So close to the source. The aarti was being done in a temple in the ashram. I felt like being outside with the Ganges so i sat down, crossed my legs and did a simple meditation. So powerful is the energy of this river. I went for a walk through the local neighbourhood. People live so close by each other here. Windows and doors are always open. Shops are left open with the shopkeeper away for periods of time. I walked the public route through to one of the ghats facing the Ganges. I walked through alleyways where neighbours all shared a single building, cordoned off at different places. Its so amazing to see people live in close community like this. They seem genuinely happy. Its so different from back home. The children here are so beautiful. They take my breathe away every time i see them; every time i hear them singing, laughing, shouting, playing. so much of purity. so much of innocence. It seems behind each shop here is a room where the owner and his family will stay. It seems people here are comfortable with what they have and live for sustainability.