Surprise! The Ganges By NightFeb 12, 2017
In India you must be ready for anything, any time of day. An unanticipated overnight in Varanasi brought us to the shores of the Ganges at sunset. As the crowds and heat dissipated, mystery and the smoke of incense and cremation fires filled the air. A slow boat ride along the ghat-lined shore brought us shoulder to shoulder with seekers, mourners, practitioners, priests, wonderers and wanderers. The dead are burned twenty-four hours a day seven days a week in this most holy of places. There is a mix of sacred and fearful, beautiful and unknowable. On one ghat priests perform an ancient river blessing ceremony (Ganga Artha) and on another flames engulf shrouded bodies. It is as paradoxical as the human condition itself… a surprise that left us in silent contemplation and awe.
Enjoy the journey.