India Part 3

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February 12th 2008
Published: February 12th 2008
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Met some top people I’ve been hanging around with, 2 half Israeli girls and a guy from Canada. Jamie from Canada has some amazing stories about the Native Americans tribes he has been hanging out with. All are into yoga and we all add something to our little group.

Varanasi is a sacred Hindu city, its like a million lanes and alleys and you are always lost but its fun. The alleys are full of smells, spices, shops, yoga, cows, mopeds and bikes. These all sit next to the 20 or so ghats - these are steps to the Ganges where lots goes on: burning of dead people, cricket, washing, boats, festivals, music, offerings, rituals, restaurants etc etc etc. The place is like nowhere I have been on earth and its all safe and friendly.

The whole place is so busy is its overwhelming, especially when you come to a road. It makes the labyrinth in Marrakech look like a calm meadow.

We went on a dawn boat trip down the Ganges, all the boats looked like they where floating on clouds as there is always a morning mist here. People bath in the Ganges but this water is full of bacteria and disease, ill give that a miss. The water is clean at the Himalayas but by the time it gets here it’s had it. But with the amount of blessings and offerings people believe it purifies the water.

We have been seeing a seventy five year old yogi, this man looks 35 and only eats a spoonful of rice a day and lives "in yoga", he taught us lots of ancient Indian wisdom and the science of breath, I also found an amazing hatha yoga teacher where in a small temple 3 of us do 2 hours a day. By day 3 I could do headstands, this bloke is unreal and knows my body and its blockages better than I do. Hatha yoga is lots of relaxing and is slow so you hold an asana (posture) for 2 mins then relax for 2 mins.

The food here is amazing and there is lots of music, art and creativity, it’s easy to fall in love with this place, and many ppl have and stayed. The last place I had affection like this for a place was san cristibol in Mexico. The Ganges River is pretty magical with so much going on including lots of worship to the sunrise and to the river.

Its so easy to just melt into Varanasi.

In a few days I go to Bodhgaya, an important place in the Buddhist world, there is lots going on there too. I have just finished reading a book about Buddhism (not a religion, a philosophy) so it should be very interesting. From my readings it seems much of Buddhism comes from hermetic philosophy (pre-dates Buddhism).

Right, I am off for some Tibetan herbal tea then for a tubla lesson (indian drums that make lots of different noises - £1 for a one on one lesson).

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