Thursday, April 14, 2016

From ‘India. A guide to the experience’ by David Stuart Ryan

….at Kolva this shoreline is the second longest in India, 40 miles of uninterrupted clean white sand …..there are only four longer beaches in all the world.

In Bombay everything has a price, and everyone is trying to sell something. Is it the way all India has to go?

….15,000 feet plateau of Tibet, that begins in Afghanistan and stretches 1500 miles to Burma, that is still uncharted territory in many areas.

Nepal, everyone will rightly tell you, is a place to unwind and relax after the sheer intensity of India and its constant stunning of the senses. Women in particular find it a relief to get away from the Hindu prurient interest in white bodies and be among a people who have always accepted an active role for the female. ….Mountain people, the world over, have a vigour and matter of factness about them that instantly reveals the affectations of ‘civilisation’.

Behind this pantheon of gods and goddesses, lies a worship of Shiva and Shakti, the male and female regenerative forces. India has preserved from its long past a respect for our own creative powers, a belief in their consecrating effect. Where we seek to subdue, the Hindu seeks to be at one with the natural forces. It is the recipe for the ease of tension that the West has induced in itself by a denial of our deepest drives, believing them to be base. Hinduism would disagree.

The streets of India are alive with human bustle – no other country can match both the sheer intensity and variety of street life …..

The women of India … Even though during the day they will have worked in the fields, fetched and carried, looked after children, tidied their house, all done with a tread of light grace and a perfectly straight back.

The magic of an Indian dawn. The intensity of the light in India is wholly different from that of Europe, and brings a drama to the opening of any day that has to be experienced to be understood.

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