Sunday, August 23, 2009

I suppose my mother 'wins' as I discovered it this morning!

My mother was all for spending money on festivals. She wanted poojas to be grand affairs, while I wanted it to be simple and personal! I remember arguing with her about lighting 100's of lamps on Krishnashtami and wasting oil. I used to tell her that it would have been better if we gave it to the poor! (Not that we always give it to the poor while we pontificate on wasteful habits!) Her argument was 'Devara Kelasa' (God's work!) was paramount at any cost.

Anyway I remembered her as I went for my morning walk.
Here is why:

As I stepped out I saw the illunination still on around 7 am right under our nose as it were!

This street is about 100 meters away, perpendicular to the Girls School street. It was closed for traffic and Ganapathi is installed in the middle of the street.

This one is another two streets away on the same Girls School street.
Surprisingly or should we say 'no surprise' that there is one more Ganapati installed in between these two on the street parallel to GS steet. I am sure I will see many more if take a walk around KP west.

In fact, around 250 meters from our house on the Reservoir Road, perpendicular to the Girls street, you will see the main pandal where the festivities, I believe, will take place for the next 10 days.
The childrens play area, which is just a bare gravel filled ground, takes on a different avatar.
In fact, I see very few children playing there. It is full of grown ups, teens and above, playing tennis ball cricket!
The roads are illuminated and lights were still on even around 7 am . The road perpendicular to this was also full of lights hanging down from the trees!
It is here I thought of my mother. She would have been very happy that the organisers went all out to make this a pooja to remember!


Marisa Narula said...

Interesting isn't it? I have always had the same reaction as you to things being overdone. But now when I think about it, I realize that the thinking of the earlier days is the more you give to the "Lord" in physical terms, the more blessed you are. But what puzzles me often is the very people who light up all these lights - who have lavish poojas etc. are sometimes not very compassionate to others around them or are arrogant and do all this more for being recognized than for the "real" reason of worshiping. I don't think there is anything wrong but it is the intention that counts. But having said that I also would like to re-state that we should be conserving energy in this day and age and helping our planet. Life is complex, isn't it? Sometimes I wonder if we will ever come to that point when the understanding will become so so clear that we will make the proper decision without too much thought. But I loved this blog and it really made me think. Love to Tara and you and hope you are well.

srinidhi said...

Thanks Marissa for making your observation! I spoke to my cousin about this lavish celebration and he said that as per the papers, forget which, the sale of Ganapathi Idols this year is way down when compared to last year! Another friend said a lot of money is collected and not everything is spent as thought by the donors!

N.L. said...

If the sale of idols is down, the Chinese economy must be suffering!

The main attraction of the festival for us as youngsters going around to the various houses asking "Ree, Ganesha Ittideera?" was the snacks that we would get as prasada.

VATSALA said...

Was it nostalgia of walking the lanes of younger days? No oil these days. Made in China decorative lamps! Makes you wonder if it was man who created God.