The rain stopped. The shelters started becoming empty . As the people started getting back to roads , there was again another splash . Those who had hit the roads , now again started running in a search of new shelter. Our hesitation to hit the road early, helped us . We were now the observers of people running here and there, for new shelters, rather than sufferers. When the splash finally stopped, and we also crossed the minimal limit of hesitant waiting, whether to start and not, the saffron cloded Sannayasi, jumped out and Lucas followed.
– ‘This was the right time’. As if we are in between a race to become perfect , in reference to some unknown ideal.
– “ Do you stay here ?“ Lucas continued to remain curious about the whereabouts of the sannayasi as my attention was concentrated on the number of Rudraksha he was wearing.
– “ Yes close to Yama lingam, we have a place where few sannayasi were given accommodation.” After saying that he stopped for few minute and did a prostration to the Arunachala mountain, and again shouted “Haro- Hara” . There was a now a crowd, who were also doing parikrama, after the rain stopped, and they shouted back to him “ Haro – Hara”.
After the rain , the concrete roads became more loving to the bare foots, which were crossing him , while doing the parikrama , with expectation of some spiritual merit.
– “Surely now it becomes walk of grace”. I pointed these out, probably to join the devotional frenziness, and create a belongingness of this devotional culture.
– “ Why do you relate grace with comfort , sometimes grace could be painful too”. I was thoroughly rejected from my aspiration of devotional club membership and rather grounded from my hallucination of relating spiritual growth ‘as gaining more comfort’.
– “ In the West , we don’t subscribe this idea that spiritual growth had to be painful , and there was a moral teacher , hiding between the skies , who would always point out what we were wrong about “ . Lucas came back with his original new age blurb. But the sannayasi seems very wise , and he quickly made his point clear.
– “ West or East , you have to know how to endure in order to sustain and survive, in between a storm, your size would not matter , even if you were largest tree , you can be wiped out , if you had not made your root stronger.”
As sanayasi halted before a temple for lightening up an small light and dedicating it to Arunachala , which was also a local custom here , another small child started playing her game of endurance, to the crowd, to feed up his local guardians .
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“Stories from Arunachala Diaries” reflects the author’s present recollections of experiences over time. Some names and characteristics have been changed, some events have been compressed, and some dialogue has been recreated to create neccesary literary effect. The reader should not consider this book anything other than a work of literature.
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