3 Feb 2013

Let There Be Faith

Howdy fellas!

I am sorry I couldn’t respond to the comments on my previous post, since I’ve been on a journey ever since. I am back to my native in Bihar, correction, the remotest location in Bihar where my grandparents live. The house has almost come to finish, which was being built after the old one made of cement and thatch fell. And I love it, since there is nothing more to add to the comforts of this place – except – electricity. Not that I am complaining, since night arrives at 6 PM here and everyone is snoring by 9, except yours’ truly. Last night, in fact, I slept at three in the morning, tossing and turning, wondering of The Da Vinci Code that I am reading and thinking of a polished end to my story that has been sitting in the Blogger Drafts for ages now.

Hey, but I am not here to rant, which I have done anyway *Grins*! I have to tell you an interesting phenomenon, that I have heard and witnessed. Let me begin.

I am not sure how many of you have heard the term “Swayambhu or Svayambhu”. This is used for idols or deities that become apparent on their own, from the earth without any excavation or human interference. They are embedded in the earth and hence the term, which means self-manifested, is given to them. I was aware of this since childhood, especially during my trips to the village – where there is a temple of the Devi, who is Svayambhu and the legendary stories that surround her, all trace back to the Hindu Mythology.  Mostly, Shivalingas are famously associated with being Svayambhu in many parts of the country.

Anyhow, the fact that I want to emphasize on is that such Svayambhu deities have an utmost sacred place in the Hindu philosophies for they are proof of the fact that God exists. These are not my beliefs, but what I gathered from the emotions that became obvious on mass’s fa├žade when any such manifestation is heard of. And one such incidence that has occurred while I have been here has made me think that humans, devout humans can go to extremes to feel blessed or special or to be the chosen one when it comes to religion. As I mentioned previously, I stay at a place which is still under construction. Undoubtedly, there is debris all around – chunks of stones, cement bags and sand are scattered. Now, my father’s uncle or rather my Grand dad’s brother stays next door – we share a mud wall/fence/demarcation. Our debris falls on their land as well. One such piece of stone got lodged in the Amla or Gooseberry tree roots. It was shaped like a Linga but was jagged with cement on it – well you get the drift. So the said uncle’s wife saw it and decided that it was Shivalinga that has appeared on its own volition from the roots. She cleaned it and has started to pray to it every single day. Whispers can be heard that Shiva has appeared in the aangan but no one should be told about it.
Self Clicked - The vast mustard fields on the way to my village.
My grandmother told us about the lodged stone, since I personally believe in Shiva, followed by a jibe about how people could be foolish. Well, we humans always presume we are right while everyone else is wrong. I did not say anything, for everyone’s faith is potent for them. I went up to the terrace for the silent escape that I only find here and went to peep into the said uncle’s aangan (Courtyard).

I was surprised to notice the stone midst the roots and a thought – rather a famous Hindi phrase flitted through my mind: Mann changaa toh kathauthi mein Ganga (Trans: If the Mind is pure, a vessel of water could hold the Ganga). And then I decided, I will not comment on whether they are right or wrong. I hear so many set of stories of the Devi in our aangan (We have a small temple of our own) and wonder, if the Supreme is everywhere, why is there a discrimination in our hearts? I shrugged my thoughts away and stared at the sun set, lovingly, thinking about ambigrams and the Great Mystery that our life is. Simple yet intriguing.

These faults make us Manushya or human. We can never be perfect – no practice can make one perfect, it can only make you a better person than you were before.

Self Clicked. Winter Morning, The Gram Devta or The Village Deity, who protects and looks after the village
Ah, and the phrase that I mentioned above has another story behind it, people! But that would be some other day.  For now, let me tell you, I am at peace here, 3,100 kms away from the din of the city and the responsibilities that come with it. Leaving you all with a promise to return with other bunch of stories, I will be back soon.

Till the next time fellas, do not follow what others say. Make up your own mind and create your own way. Our destinies are same. Blessed be!