25 jan,bharata yatra 2008
chennai to kumbhakonam,
two days program in chennai is over. all of us started off to kumbhakonam in the afternoon.
for a long time we were travelling by the smooth seashore road. the beauty of the vast blue ocean was intercepted by the isolated palm trees. on the right side fields were empty where the villagers make salt from sea water. we drove past mahabali puram, a beautiful historic place. there are temples just by the sea built by the pallava kings. some of them are in a single stone. amazing work and architecture. it looks like some children were playing and were making temples just for fun. because nothing is in an organized way nor according to the standard measurements similar to other hindu temples. but its a beautiful piece of work. if you get a chance, you must see that. we drove past mahabali puram.
it was 7 p.m when amma pulled over and stopped in a garden by the road. it was not really a garden, amma sat in the corner of an L shaped road. on either side of the road were fields with little green grass. you could hear the sound of the cricket against the passing of the trucks on the highway. temporary lights were put up from a generator. soundsystem team put up a small speaker and the santsang stage was set. amma narrated some incidents form the programmes. she sang few bahjans. had question answers on awareness and desires. “how to be focussed on your goal in the middle of distractions and temptations” was the question asked by amma. ( you may post your answers in the comment, i shall try to pass it to amma). after listening to the answers amma said “all the pleasures in the end leads to pain. only viveka and viragya (discrimination and dispassion) will help you keep focussed on the goal. sri shankaracharya insists on these two values on every page of his work” amma added.
amma also wanted her children to share some stories and jokes. we all had supper -nice and soft iddaly and sambar- with amma. the oval shaped yellowish red moon was rising up in the horizon when amma got up. she asked every one to contemplate on the points discussed for the next 3 hours.
we set off to kumbhakonam. the roads became very bad. no no i am not true. the roads really dont exisit!! sitting inside the car you feel like you are inside a washing machine. i don’t know when we will reach kumbhakonam. 60 more kilometers to go. sure we have to reach. amma is with us.