80 reasons to love India
80 Reasons to love India, plus one
A few years ago, I was staying at the Haus Khas home in New Delhi of beloved friends, Prama and Ranji.
While there, I read their daily newspaper which offered 60 reasons why Indians can love India.
Despite the political/social/religious/environmental isses facing India, here are 80 reasons why Westerners love India.
In alphabetical order:
Amaji, the spiritual hugger
“Are you one person or two (partners or friends)?” Question on train to Western travellers.
Advaita, Arunchala, and Ramana Maharshi
Auto rickshaws (gas fuelled)
Baharganj, oppposite New Delhi station
Beggars – hard workers; one rupee earned for every hundred rejections
Bodh Gaya, the place of the Buddha’s enlightenment
Boys playing cricket
Burning ghats in Varanasi
Call to prayer of imam from minaret
“Cash today. Credit tomorrow.” Sign in Varanasi shop
Chai, chai wallahs and chai stalls (e.g. Ram’s chai stall, Bodh Gaya).
Chaos Theory in the real world
Dharamsala and Tibetans
Dr. Jain’s Guest House, Sarnath
Electricity (Bhagwan giveth and Bhagwan taketh away).
Freedom from the Raj (British Occupation)
Ganga at dawn
Indian classical music
Old Buddhist/Hindu suttas/sutras/books
Katak classical dance
Krishna, Radha and the Gopis
Malas, incense and bells
Markets for food, shawls, clothes and trinkets.
Motilal Banarsidas Bookshop, Varanasi
Naked sadhus with dreadlocks
Neem toothpaste and tongue cleaners
Nisargadatta Maharaj.”I am That.”
Palm trees on long, quiet beach
Plains of India
Pragya Vihar Inter-Religious School, Bodh Gaya
Rajasthan and Kerala (Goa for beach tourists)
Saris, shawls, Nehru collars, kirta pyjamas
2nd class AC two tier train carriages
Sahb Kuch Milega
Shirdi Baba’s Photo in taxis
Spices, red hot chilli, ginger, garam masala, tumeric for veggie food
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Art of Living
Taj Mahal and its love story
Tantra art and Tantric texts
Thai Monastery, Bodh Gaya and Sarnath
The Buddha in Bodh Gaya and standing Buddha in Sarnath
Tigers, camels, elephants, monkeys and buffaloes
Vandava Shiva and Andurata Roy, (environmental activists)
Water, Earth, Fire films of Deepa Mehta
“We deeply regret to inform you that train number ….. has been delayed.” Railway station announcement.
PS. Finally Yoga, naturally.