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Mythology and More

Espresso Shots Mythology and More

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ravan was chasing me. he had ten heads and ten faces and ten sets of teeth bared as he sprinted effortlessly, bow and arrow in hand. his skin was swarthy, his eyes bulged, his hair blew wildly in the wind. i could feel my breath getting shorter and shorter, till there was practically no breath left. my feet were tired. my head was hurting. how would i ever come out of this alive? then i remembered something. i stopped running.…

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Mythology and More

Ma Durga’s Sons

durga ma sons

Over the years the idols of Ma Durga and her children only get bigger and grander, or so it seems from where I sit (if am lucky to get a space, mostly I just stand and get shoved around) in front of her looking at all the excitement surrounding them. The panditji praying, long winding lines of perspiring women dressed in their finest. A much calmer line of men in their cotton kurtas. Kids, getting in everyone’s way, who would rather…

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Mythology and More

Navratri & Dussehra – An ode to the festive season

Nine days and nine nights Of festive fervour and bright lights Each day of Navratri a different colour Each day singing verses of valour Durga arrives in nine avatars Lakshmi, Saraswati are not far All the Goddesses descend As one Shakti they transcend Ma Durga is Mother Kali Worshipped as Mahishasura Mardhini Many names but She is one Protecting us from evil demons Krishna arrives with his Gopikas To play the musical raas leela Sri Ram too arrives with Seeta…

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Mythology and More

with song and reverence and cap pistol… durga pujo

cap pistol (remember those?), rahul dev burman, new clothes, midnight movies, razia sultan, drumbeats, ghugni, exams, flowers in my clasped hands. the one with ten arms comes to my mind on many things. she’s been around for a long long time, quite taken for granted, part of life. to be worshiped, to be gazed at in awe, to be surrounded by noise and joy, to be danced and acted before, to be rejoiced with food and friends, to be prostrated…

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Mythology and More

why the hanukkah story reminds me of madhusudan’s magic pot

actually, there’s no magic involved. both are stories of faith. perhaps the sort of faith that brings miracle. i heard one when i was a child, the other after i got married. as my husband, who is jewish, finished telling me why eight oil lamps are lit on hanukkah, i thought of a tiny pot of yogurt and the tale of madhusudan’s bhar. “bhar” means earthenware pot in bengali, and the sound of “r” at the end is more like…

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Mythology and More

Home Is Where The Light Is – A Diwali Memory

Home Is Where The Light Is A Diwali Memory

First, I thought about food that my dadiji (grandmother) would make every Diwali. It was as much part of the ritual of the day as the new clay idols that my mother would buy – Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth) and Ganesh (God of good luck and success). Diyas (tiny mud lamps) with oil and cotton wicks were spread out on the roof, window sills and boundary walls. I maintained a smug superiority because we used traditional diyas over the more common…

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Mythology and More

Diwali – The festival of lights

diwali festival lights

Diwali, a festival of lights Diwali, sparkles the night Diwali, brings joy and delight Diwali, makes the smile go wide The thought of Diwali is enough to bring excitement to the heart. Memories of celebrations and jubilations, new clothes and rangolis, sweets and savouries. And the best part is that there are lights all around, making one forget that it is actually a new moon (Amavasya) night. Diwali or Deepavali means an arrangement of lights in a series. And there…

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Mythology and More

the dark one… and the night of lights

night descends. the lamps are ready with oil and wick. my heart is in my mouth. it’s bhoot chaturdashi. the ghost fourteenth day, if i translate literally. and tonight, unless we put fourteen diyas or oil lamps, or even candles, in fourteen corners of the house and eat fourteen kinds of leafy greens, watch out, anything might happen. the spooks are out and about. i am laughing as i write this. i used to quake with fear every bhoot chaturdashi…

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Mythology and More

Diwali@home

Diwali is the only festival that is celebrated with some enthusiasm in our family. Tam-Bram me, my GSB hubby and my two daughters, who actually grew up without knowing or following any religious rituals, look forward to festivals only because they mean days off from school/work! We live in a cosmopolitan locality in North Bangalore, where you will not find the usual hustle and bustle accompanying the numerous festivals in our country. The usual Office Professional Plus 2013 key ‘Habba’…

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Mythology and More

it’s sukkot… chag sameach.

“you start building the sukka the day after yom kippur,” my husband said. we used to live in a house those days and there was a perfect spot by the koi pond, with wooden beams creating a sort of roof above and brickwork on the floor, for the sukka. sukkot, which is the plural of sukka, is a joyous festival of thanksgiving and more celebrated by jews across the world. sukka means a simple hut. after the exodus from egypt…

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