Monday, June 21, 2010
A PART OF THE LETTER WRITTEN TO MY FRIEND LIPI, ON MY LATEST VISIT TO Pondicherry. The pictures are 'few' of the hundreds of pictures i took..:)enjoy
Well I am back to Pune after an enlightening or rather refreshing journey I would say. I don’t wish to talk much about Auroville because I have spoken enough already and don’t wish to irk you. I want to share with you what I discovered, which I never did before this. Maybe it has to do with spending a year in a design school that we observe things through an eye of design.
People there whether artists, designers, painters, potters, interns, volunteers, rag pickers, cooks, people who come for research or just anybody in that place has something in them which we need to absorb as learners in life. The attachment or attitude one has towards work, the reason we do things we like and not do things we don’t like or annoy us, which sounds more like the ‘blackberry’ tagline but one experiences it in Auroville. The place has a lot to just absorb while you are there. The output of work shows that the person involved believes in it and that’s the reason he/she is doing it. There is that extra love one needs to put in his work is something I observed.
The weather was not to good though and my lizard phobia as usual made me very uncomfortable. Another thing which you would be interested would be the auroville library or the books in general in and around auroville. One will find all genres of arts, science, literature and what not.
I was able to do something which was one of the main reasons behind my visit: MEDITATION. If you haven’t done it ever I would advice you to. It helps you connect with who you are and for sometime takes you away from what is bothering you. But as Sri Aurobindo says meditation is a way of life, I agree with him completely. I don’t think it is just closing your eyes and deep breathing but it is much more than that. For me it is doing what we like to do. Like for example I like to paint, so it is like a meditation for me. It is because I am discovering myself and connecting to those parts of my brain which I usually don’t. I went through some of Sri Aurobindo’s writings. I dint read much about The Mother who was his disciple and the founder of Auroville.
My next destination was Pondicherry. Well I just landed up there one afternoon and decided to stay there for the next 3 days. I went to the Aurobindo ashram guest house which is known for their locations, quiet surroundings and good rooms for staying for a longer duration. One has to abide by the rules of the ashram to stay there. it was just opposite the sea and I fell in love with the place in the first go. I rented a bicycle to move around in pondy. It is a beautiful place . Something any person would fall in love with and beauty which even a cynic would appreciate. The food, those antique shops, creative cafes that served all cuisines, and most importantly, the south Indian people. Even the rag-pickers speak French and they have a flair for languages: Spanish, Italian, german..Etc. picked up a lot of accessories for ashwini and aditi and they were very happy to see them. The Aurobindo ashram is one place everyone should visit. I visited a famous temple there which somehow made me feel as if I belong to that place. There is this elephant which stands outside and blesses you with his trunk. It was fun and I really felt blessed. I prayed for almost everybody I know . I was very happy that day. Had some awesome desserts at the famous Beach Café facing the sea and later spent some time sitting at the sea shore. The sea gives me a feeling of love towards everything in life and I miss having one in my own city. I wish to stay there for some part of my life.
Lastly the hospitality one gets in the south is commendable. The love and affection they have towards guests makes you love them and their food even more. May be because religion is a major part of their living and they personify the phrase, GODS OWN PEOPLE.