Diary of a Haiku Traveler – Second Entry

Sixth Month, Twenty-fifth day

Clear sky and hot day. Temperature: 43 degree Celsius

Location: Bhatinda, Punjab, India

Temple under the Peepal Tree

Giant Peepal tree
a temple with devotees
prayer on their lips

As I go out for a walk, I see this gigantic peepal tree with a temple under it. People from the nearby colonies gather here and sing bhajans. I stand there and look at them; certain calm prevails around the place as the evening air is filled with rhythmic dholak patterns and chants. I stand there but my mind is elsewhere, it is thinking about Uttarakhand.

The cloud bursts in Uttarakhand have taken away thousands of lives. Thousands still stranded around the holy land of Badrinath and Kedarnath. I wonder what is so holy about it. We have fucked with nature time and again and we witness the Rudra (angry) form of Ganges. Why like dumb asses we gather at places like Kedarnath and Badrinath? I can understand the religious sentiments but why in thousands we gather and fuck with nature.

The places in the mountains are not meant for so many people, we knew this fact and this is what we did. We cut trees. We make roads. We make hotels luxurious ones and not so luxurious ones. We make space. We play with the course of the rivers coming from Yamunotri and Gangotri, I am sure we have done this. Now look what happened… The temple, oh wait it still stands, a chamatkar (miracle), I don’t know and I don’t fucking care. I salute the efforts of our armed forces who are working tirelessly, amidst horrendous weather conditions to bring the survivors back home.

God lives in our hearts, he or she lives in the temple next door (oh we have temples everywhere), then what is so bloody special there that compels us to take our little kids on those difficult treks.

I have stopped watching television shows for they show the agony and pain (no wait, they also say that they are the first ones to show the tears in that widow’s eyes). Brilliant.

Giant Peepal tree
I look at the shivling*
Kedarnath’s different?

*Shivling is the symbol of Lord Shiva.

Temple and devotees and prayers

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