Sacred India Highlights 2010

Participants from the first Sacred India Tour share some of their highlights. From the funeral pyres and pujas of Varanasi, to the sacred sexuality of Khajuraho; from the ecstasy of Osho’s enlightenment tree to the simplicity of his birth place and the beautiful welcome from the people of his village; from the serenity of ancient Tantra temples to the hustle and bustle of the marketplace, and the unique experience that is travelling through India!

Sacred Sites of India 2010 tour party

Sacred Sites of India 2010 tour party

“Oh to be again embracing and being embraced by the tree where Osho became enlightened…held in infinity as in the arms of the most pure and tender lover.

Sitting under the stars in a little boat on the Ganges, watching our little flower candles carrying prayers and “let go’s” float with purpose in the current til out of sight.

Sitting with death and feeling the Heavenly Comforter at Varanasi’s burning ghat funeral pyres – so natural, so timeless. Everyone should be able to do this once on their life.” Anand Aasta

“The special highlight for me was visiting Osho’s birthplace and experiencing meeting the local villagers. It was very touching to be greeted by such warm friendly people. Osho’s house had such a wonderful warm nurturing energy and surrounded by such beautiful unspoiled countryside. The magical soft late afternoon sun made the whole experience feel like dropping back in space and time.” Shraddha

Blessings from the holy man

Blessings from the holy man

“Actually, the biggest challenge for me was to come away in the first place – to an unknown country , with a group of people I hadn’t met before. There are many highlights to mention, but the two that stand out were the burning ghats in Varanasi and the sunset meditation in Khajuraho. It was deeply moving and emotional to witness the sacredness in which death is held here. The sunset meditation in Khajuraho -a new experience for me to meditate with open eyes in the darkness with the full moon up. And what a beautiful group of people we were. I’ve made many new friends and the whole tour was a complete adventure. I will always remember this time. Thank you all.” Ian

Death in Varanasi – what a baptism into death/life. Life in death – each enfolded in the other. Disturbing for me. I came to India to ‘die to self’ – and I ‘lost’ my passport – my identity. I dipped in the Ganges and let go (Challenge) of old patterns of thought that do not support my journey.

Sex in Khajuraho. Ganga’s personal guided tour of the temples and personal chat about non-possessiveness in love was very special.

Birth – total abandonment meditating (Transformation) at Osho’s rock with the sound of Dynamic Meditation in the background. Challenge: letting go of the mind. Transformation: glimpsing the kingdom is within.” Phil Shankland

 

The endless nectar of the Shiva puja in Varanasi

The endless nectar of the Shiva puja in Varanasi

“Definitely Varanasi – deeply touched by the contrast of chaos, noiseness, dirtyness in the town compared to the peace, calmness, quietness at the river Ganga and the burning ghats.

Big relief about the natural integration of death in daily life -accompanied by an Indian guide on top of a building near the ghats, I enjoyed a very special meditation watching a body burn. Standing behind the fire source of the burning ghats and feeling the enormous power of the fire and the power of transformation.

Visiting the tantra temples in Khajuraho guided by Ganga – listening to his explanations of the old Tantra rituals and traditions.

Visitng the enormous tree in Jabalpur where Osho was enlightened – getting the message of purification and the value of it for myself and the whole world.

Visiting the Marble Rocks by boat in the moonlight – like an intergalactic adventure – incredible!” Joy Beate

 

The stunning beauty of Khajuraho

The stunning beauty of Khajuraho

“The puja in Varanasi for Shiva with endless, endless nectar never ending which just reinforced the Tantra group we had done the week before. It just went on and on – this pouring of milk over the Shiva lingam – and at the end placing salt, curd and an abundance of beautiful flowers. Osho’s Buddha tree had amazing earth energy and was the cuddliest tree I ever felt! And in Osho’s birth place I felt again the intense heat through the ears and cheeks that I had felt in Darshan with Neelam the week before. It has all been amazing!! Good and bad experiences have all created growth and expansion in me! Sophie Churchyard

“For me the Shiva Puja in Varanasi was incredibly beautiful and powerful. The chantings by the three priests (with us joining in the best we could) and the many offerings invoked a trance-like state. I felt extremely blessed to be a part of the ceremnoy -though operating my video camera and stills camera was a bit challenging with ghee or milk-covered hands! Standing at night by the burning ghats was intensely serene and moving. Listening to Osho’s guide, Ganga, at the temples in Khajuraho was a real transmission -what a beautiful man!

Osho’s enlightenment tree opened my heart and brought me to tears – especially poignant when Sarita said that for anyone who hadn’t met Osho in the body (i.e. all of us apart from Sarita), this tree held the same energy.

 

Osho's house

Osho's house

Marble Rocks by moonlight – beautiful and eerie – I almost expected (hoped for?) a pirate ship with Johnny Depp to appear out of the shimmering darkness!

The last ‘highlight’ was rather unexpected. After narrowly managing to board our return flight from Bhopal to Delhi, complete with 5-Star takeaway dinner in polystyrene containers, the flight crew amazingly agreed with Niten’s request for us to eat our own food. Niten and I juggled plates and chappatis, curry, rice and dal in the narrow serving space at the back of the plane – ducking between the rest of the flight crew as they simultaneously served up the standard airline food. I negotiated the aisle with laden plates of food, luckily not slopping any over the fellow passengers’ suits. One Indian gentleman in the back row commented, “Never before in my life have I seen anything like this!” I apologise but he appeared amused/bemused rather than annnoyed!

Many thanks to Sarita for inspiring the tour and huge appreciation to Niten and Santoshi for steering us with grace and humour through the chaos and adventure that is ‘part and parcel’ of travel in India.” Sidika

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