Tag Archives: austere lifestyle

Sadhu and their dedication

I went on a trawl of Google’s Images the other day looking for Sadhu’s. I find them curiously interesting. Sadhu’s are holy men of India. They are worshippers of Shiva living as ascetics who are in there last stage of the three stages of a Hindu life where efforts to achieve Moksha are upmost in and foremost in their minds. Being a worshipper of Shiva myself I am really drawn to their dedication and focus. Qualities that I have right now, but not in the same context and probably not in the same strength (by any stretch of the imagination). Their renunciation of the material and societial world interests me the most. I have always been drawn to things that completely buck the system and travel in a completely opposite direction to the norm. I am sure I have missed the point here, they’re likely to me going with the flow that is presented to them rather than making a poilitical point.

Personally I am currently attempting to live a more austere lifestyle, I’ve dumped my TV, I’ve severely reduced my possessions and I’m thinking of doing another round of recycling soon as I still have lots of things that I don’t really need. My iPod battery finally gave up the ghost the other day, I’m going to ebay it and pass it onto someone who can get hold of a battery and knows how to change them. I can’t compare my meagre efforts with the Sadhu’s who I admire so much, but I have a way to go before that stage of my life begins.

Click an image to see the full size version.
A SadhuJust looking at this picture makes me want to know what’s gone on in this mans mind. I find his efforts staggering. When do we in the west face this kind of experience?

Whilst looking through the hundreds of interesting pictures that people have put onto their blogs and photograph collections I came across this image of a young girl who lives in the city of Varanasi. Its not very often you see genuine happiness and freedom on someones face. I see this in her face. She seems so happy. She looks so genuine, she seems almost untainted. Untainted by the west?
Street Kids of Varanasi
What an amazing concept, that people can live in such terrible poverty by western standards, yet be so much more happy. I can’t remember the last time that I saw someone smile with such expression. Our overdeveloped western lives have so much to answer for.

Streets of Varanasi
This image shows the level of the quality of life in Varanasi. Dirt next to food being sold in the same street. A Bitch feeding her young. In the same place. What a great picture.

The Colour Photographs in this entry where taken by Ray Church. His photographs are found here: http://www.travelblog.org/Photos/893322.html and his travel blog can be found here: http://www.travelblog.org/Bloggers/Raymondo/

I feel that I should point out that I feel both grateful and annoyed at being a westerner.  There is much to be grateful for, as has been pointed out in the comments from the readers I appear to have annoyed with my ignorance.  Yet at the same time I do not feel a connection with the earth or with my community and to a certain degree with my spiritual life that appears to be the very foundation of the Indian way of life.  It is not my intention to annoy anyone with the comments I have made.  If they stir comments and even discussion then this is wonderful.  But I have posted the above pictures with the utmost respect for the people shown.  Namaste. Om Namah Shivaya.

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