I was able to sleep-in today, 7:30am, it was luxurious seeing as rise-time has been around 1:30am to attend sacred rituals that start the day. Just back from Omkareshwar, an ancient Shiva temple on the Narmanda river. The ride was 8hours round trip by taxi, and was on some of the smoothest roads I've yet to experience here in India.
It was about 85 degrees and sunny. I had plenty of good food,. and abundant water. Could it get any better?
There are places of pilgirmage that are so hard to get to, and so stunning that the travellers skip the journey back and settle.
I have seen places here so beautiful it brings tears to your eyes, I've seen places so bleak it bring tears to your eyes. Sometimes we cannot recognize the beauty until we've experienced the dark. It's like that with empathy. To really know empathy, you've got to have suffered. In India, the opposites are extreme, and right in your face.
There's a Sutra I was going to quote, but the power just went out and this battery will go along with it very soon, but you get the drift. If we want the rainbow, we've got to ride through the rain.
As Yogis, we see our challenges as teachings, as preparation, as the needed opposite. Right now, if it's good or bad for you, don't worry, it will change. try to find the beauty in it all. Sometimes hard…. but the practice is in the trying.
I've been warned to trust nobody, and have had minor scams tried on me… yet a stranger probably saved my life in Haridwar, and on a train a man returned a 500 rupee bill (around $10) that I had dropped.
This pm I'm off to Mumbai by overnight train. it's 12+ hours. I've been well and appreciate all the well wishes in my inbox. Internet has been scarce and unreliable…. and sloooow. I'll have new-found appreciation for my fiberoptic connection at home.
Travelling has been wild. planes, traints, boats, trucks, rickshaws, motorbikes, helicopters, horseback… whatever it takes to get there. At 2am yesterday morning, rode to the temple clinging to the back of an ancient bread delivery truck. The man back there with me didn't understand a speck of english, but we laughed together.
Take care, I'll do my best to write from Mysore and Shirdi.