Om Namah Shivaya

Om Namah Shivaya

I'll be grateful if you...

Jan 4, 2011

STILL LIFE: Gateway Buddha Cafe - A Spiritual journey at Rishikesh

Start of an interesting year in an interesting way. I took a week’s off from work to take on a spiritual journey towards Himalaya’s. Rishikesh has always been my favorite place to download all the negative energy that gets accumulated in me, while living in the concrete jungle of various metro’s and the cities over the year. Rishikesh, as some say, Devbhoomi (Land of Gods) is one place, where yoga took its roots and slowly over the time has become the world’s spiritual capital (Well!! according to some). Many of the India’s enlightened Yogi’s have lived here in meditation for years and given the world, many powerful spiritual and yogic techniques. 

For me, it is a place where the environment stills my mind and senses are calmed and the Ganges provides perfect backdrop for peace. Walking on the banks of river Ganges, I am able to search my innerself, deeper. Almost every year I visit this place as well as a very powerful temple Neel Kanth and some times have shared my experiences at the blogs. This time, instead of writing about the Rishikesh, Sivananda Ashram where I stay and its beauty, natural or spiritual, I am going to talk about a place called Little Buddha Café from where another one of my inner journey started… A search of spirituality through some pictures that I took this time … from the Gateway Buddha. 

I hope this journey gives you a sense of the place and the spiritual thread behind it all…
Holy River Ganges in Rishikesh - Himalaya


The Journey within
__________
The journey within
And the undulating path
River of time flows on

Shores travel along side
All the way long,
Before offering their very existence
At the altar of life
Along with the flow of time
Fabric of ocean is all consuming
All consuming cosmic design

My journey too
Churned in travails of senses
Some times I sink
Some times I surface, in little bit of light
Gasping for breath of life
Some times I wander, helpless
And some times totally lost

Slowly, under my feet
The road disappeared
Am I the destination?
______
ॐ नमः शिवाय
Om Namah Shivaya



Now here is the journey with my Impressions along the way…. Hope you will enjoy it too…


Buddha Café offers one of the most beautiful views of the Holy River of the up and down stream. Its amazingly cozy place, very hygienic and great food with almost all the cuisines. The people are friendly here as well as they let you be in your own space without overtly disturbing your privacy.


View of Laxman Jhula

 Some come here to eat and some for the view like my friends from Belgium. Interestingly, as they say, some times you are called to a place, through cosmic design, to experience or to be gifted something unique. Due to bad weather, their flight got cancelled and they had nothing to do for few days, so decided to visit this place.

Friends from Belgium
  
Its here, I met another two great friends, who got me started on this another beautiful journey in search for spirituality.

Friends from Europe
  
We started discussing things spiritual, which is quite natural when you are in Rishikesh...;-) 
What is yoga meditation and how to become a Yogi or spiritual? 

And there is me too

Here with me is one very interesting friend who reads a lot and many years ago decided that he wants to travel and removed all the attachments that he carried that bound him to a place. He works 3 months and travels 9 months… no attachments to any thing. A perfect yogi!!!

On the way to Neel Kanth Temple
  
In Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra talks about nature as something that provides everything for every one when the time is right or the person is ready.

This is my old favorite stream, on the way to Neel Kanth

As the water overflows when it’s full and moves to a direction of the least resistance. Just like this waterfall. It will find its own way to move and will never try to overcome the big boulders that come on its own way…

Stream on the way down...

The innerself is like the water, it knows its way… to move from point A to Point B, it’s just that we don’t let it. The unfortunate part is that some times we don’t even know that there is a point B. But the worst part is that most of the times we don’t know that we have to move from point A to Point B, that is what is imprinted as DNA in our innerself


Ganges near the beach, on the way to Buddha Cafe

As the river flows on its own way, to meet the ocean. Travelling thousands of miles it will meet ultimately the sea, where though in loosing its own self, becomes one with the overall supreme self… River knows its path, even when it was just a trickle at the source...


Street in front of the Guru Nivas of Sivananda Ashram, where I stayed
  
But many of us don’t really know our way, we look for it…  in many ways... Some are searching through the streets of Rishikesh

At Haridwar
  
Some have packed up and ready for the long journey… into unknown

Neel Kanth Temple
  
Some find it in doing Charity in temples

Haridwar
  
Some find it in throwing money to beggars…

Haridwar
  
Some think that taking a dip in the holy water will cleanse their soul…

Haridwar
  
Some worship River Ganges

At Haridwar

Some are just happy enough to live in that present moment, capturing memories for the future…


Rishikesh bathing ghat
  
Some through rituals of Sun worship on the banks of the river Ganges, after early morning bath…

Lord Vishwanath Temple, Sivananda Ashram
  
Some through the ritual of Bathing Lord Shiva by Holy water of River Ganges

Bathing Ghat Rishikesh
  
Some who are content enough not to go anywhere … just be where they are… at ‘A’ point

Bathing Ghat Haridwar
  
Some are, in essence, Karma Yogi, doing their own work amidst all the spirituality and rituals hanging around them…

The best view point of Ram Jhula from Sivananda Ashram
  
So many ways, so many paths… wondering how to find that inner path, like that river’s innate desire to be where it’s supposed to be in the end… from the Point A to Point B..

Ram Jhula from Sivananda Ashram 
  
There are many, many ways to grow, from the lower to higher plane of living, seeking out the light of life…

River Ganges on the way to Neel Kanth Temple
  
Yogi’s talk and some times guide. But some time they also just let it be, within you, for you to seek… and some times just let your inner desire grow into more intense, till the time, nature provides what you seek… the path or the Guru or just the higher level of being…

My friend Swami Yatidharmananda with my friend from Europe
At Guru Nivas of Sivananda Ashram, where I was staying
  
Or just let the fog lift’s from your seeking eye…

Another view of the Ganges from Sivananda Ashram

I am on a journey too… probably in search of spirituality


On the way to Neel Kanth Temple
  
And the path is still as difficult and unknown… as it was before, probably a little more light or a little more clarity on what is to look for...

On the way to Buddha Cafe - My favorite walking meditation route
  
Idol worship


Rudra Abhishekam - A powerful ritual for Lord Shiva
at Vishwanath Temple - Sivananda Ashram
  
Meditation

Sivananda Ashram
  
Service or Devotion

Swami Yatidhramananda chanting - Sivananda Ashram
  
Knowledge or Gnana

On the way to Buddha Cafe
  
Light or fire… Whatever being the method, ritual or process… All are ways to the same end of going to being higher self… evolution

The Aarti Lamp at Vishwanath Temple - Sivananda Ashram
   
May be through a focus on doing something… living in the present completely

A view of bathing Ghat at Rishikesh from my room at Gurunivas
  
Or being one with the nature all around oneself…

A view of Ram Jhula from bathing ghat
  
Or silently meditating, wondering what it is all about…?

Welcoming New Year's  with silent meditation
Samadhi Hall - Sivananda Ashram 
  
Yet wondering still…

At the balcony of Gurunivas - Sivananda Ashram
  
Waiting… waiting for something, some one to come and take one across the silently flowing river to the other end, where …

Bathing Ghat and the jetty where boats come and pick up passengers
  
There is light, a new sun rise…

Ist January 2011 Sunrise from my bedroom window at Gurunivas
Sivananda Ashram
  
Or just live life in the present, every day doing what comes to you in the morning with 100% sincerity, dedication and positivity and then forget about the results… live life as a Karma Yogi as Lord Krishna advised Arjuna in the Ancient Scripture "The Bhagwad Gita" …

Every day ritual of having my morning cup of tea at this stone
after bathing in the river
Who knows what’s the real way till the time one really realizes it within innerself… but that should never stop one from living… and from ‘being’ …
Just have your morning ‘cuppa’ everyday and cherish it …

ॐ नमः शिवाय
Om Namah Shivaya
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