Tag Archives: Dhyana Mandapam

The Kanyakumari Sunrise…

I had thought of making a Sunrise collage quite a while back when I started #SriniOnTour… Different stages of the Sun Rising and depicting it’s beautiful layers upon us uncanny humans… After missing out the Marina beach breaking of Sunrise because of the confusion between Park and Park Town station… I thought I would get some great pictures at Pondicherry beach… had been waking up early on most of the days to ensure that I get great pictures and am finally able to make a Sunrise album… I guess it wasn’t to be… As they say, everything happens for a reason… Now I know the reason… The sunrise collage had to be in this most blissful and eternal place of all… Farthest down south and the most beautiful place I’ve seen so far…

 

So I woke up early at 5:30 AM, quickly showered and made sure I got to the Sunrise point at 6:00 AM… Thankfully I got a hotel room not quite far from the Sunrise point.. As expected, everyone in Kanyakumari (mostly tourists, fishermen, malbari swamis) was wide awake and ready to witness the grandeur… After Rameshwaram I had certainly anticipated this one… So I had to make sure that I go to a spot where I get great snaps… So I decided to walk all the way to the bridge near the Muttom fishing Vilalge…

 

 

Muttom Village

Muttom Village

There is a huge bridge of rocks, (I overheard someone saying it’s the bridge that helped Lord Rama get across to Lanka… hahaha.. what imagination some people have) Anyways, it’s  a beautiful sight that I must say… and if you walk down the bridge with the breeze in your face, it’s nothing but eternal bliss that you ‘face.’ So after reaching the bridge midway, I decided to sit down on one of those rocks and patiently wait for the Sun to rise…

 

 

The Rocky Bridge...

The Rocky Bridge...

 

There were clouds and my hopes were diminishing.. Hopes of seeing the sun in it’s orangey best… Well, I was crossing my fingers and hoping that I get some really nice pictures… Slowly I saw the rays of light break through the cloud… Fishermen going into the sea across the horizon, the rays really blissful and the Sun raring to go and break out of those clouds… All I did was cross my fingers and hope in my heart that the Sun does breakthrough those cloudy shackles…

 

 

Breaking Through...

Breaking Through...

 

Slowly, yet steadily, Surya Bhagwan (Lord Sun) answered my prayers and made sure he showed up for one of the best collages thatI’ve been able to shoot so far 🙂 It was an experience that was totally worth it…

 

 

Lord Surya Answered my prayer...

Lord Surya Answered my prayer...

After that was done with… I decided to head off to the Vivekananda Memorial Rock, the first ferry that takes you there starts at 8:00 AM and tickets go up for sale at 7:45 AM… The state-owned Poompuhar Shipping Corporation runs ferry services between the town and the Vivekananda Rock Memorial and Thiruvalluvar statue, situated on rocky islets off the coast.

 

 

Ferry to the Rocks...

Ferry to the Rocks...

 

There is a huge queue that starts gathering around 7:00 AM and I was at the back of it of course… But thankfully, the queue is fast moving and you have to just wait till 8:30 to get there… Getting there is an experience in itself… Wearing Life Jackets just for the heck of it of course, cos none of them were really worth wearing, some broken chords, some tattered jackets… but at the end of it all it’s just a formality so to speak.. Though when the time comes, I’m sure they would help you to a certain extent, but I don’t think its a big ordeal…

 

One of the rocks called Sri Padhaparai is said to bear the footprints of the virgin goddess. Swami Vivekananda is said to have meditated on this rock for three days. Also on this rock, there is a Dhyana mandapam, an area for meditation. Ferry services are available to reach the memorial. (Wikipedia)

 

 

Vivekananda Memorial Rock

Vivekananda Memorial Rock

 

Once you are done with the Vivekananda Rock, you get into another ferry, which will take you to the Thiruvalluvar Statue… the gigantic 133 feet (40.5 m) tall statue of Tamil saint-poet Thiruvalluvar (Completed on January 1, 2000 by the legandary Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati, Chennai) is one of the biggest statues in Asia. (Wikipedia) Witnessing this is truly an experience that you should not miss… Truly blissful 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Thiruvalluvar Statue

Thiruvalluvar Statue

 

Thiruvalluvar's Foot

Thiruvalluvar's Foot

All in all these two hours in the midst of the ocean really make you wonder… think about what you are really doing in life… Not just about the spiritual existence of your body mind and soul, but also the real question of what you want to do in life… One thing you must do… is get to the top most section at the feet of the statue… From there you can really look out to the horizon.. Look out to the horizon and ask yourself the question… What are you? Who are you?  Why are you here?? How should you go about life… Truly a philosophy of existence is something you will see, with clairvoyance of sorts that you won’t be able to witness elsewhere…

 

 

A distant view...

A distant view...

 

Inside Out...

Inside Out...

Utterly Blissful

Utterly Blissful

This certainly has been a mesmerizing experience for me… Do let me know what you think of this?? Have you ever felt this way??

 

Share

Advertisements

Reaching Kanyakumari…

So the next day I woke up at 5:00 AM, to go to the temple to witness the early morning procession… I quickly left towards the temple, but before that I had to check out the sea shore, which I hadn’t checked out the earlier night. Surprisingly when I started walking towards the temple… it didn’t even feel like 5:00 AM,  it was just like I was there the night before… People buzzing with chants, talking to each other, some groups of old ladies chanting mantras and singing their kirtanas… Rickshaw drivers waiting outside the temple, for people who are moving out… For them it was a routine… And why wouldn’t it be? This happens everyday out there…

 

Anyways I headed to the bus stop, not surprisingly, the rickshaw driver who was going to drop me today didn’t answer his calls, so I didn’t waste anymore time and decided to head off to the bus stand in another auto…

 

So here I’m at the bus stand and the only bus that goes to Kanyakumari is right there… And boy, was it a bus or what… A SETC ordinary bus, which was going to fill up loads of luggage of all the people going to Kanyakumari and it didn’t even have a luggage compartment at the back… The only one that was available was on the side.. Which mean’t my 20 KG something backpack would have to be crammed beneath the bottom of my seat.. Thankfully the guy sitting next to me didn’t mind and I was sorted…

 

After a gruelling long journey of 9 hours, mostly sleeping, some reading the book Tokyo Cancelled and some tweeting and facebooking, it was really amazing to reach Kanyakumari… Well, enroute Kanyakumari, you would find a lot of Windmills most of them by Suzlon power… a stock in which I used to invest once upon a time and then it fell.. 😦 Going by the looks of it, these windmills were there for a reason…

 

 

Approaching Kanyakumari

Approaching Kanyakumari

 

 

 

Suzlon Windmills near Kanyakumari

Suzlon Windmills near Kanyakumari

 

 

Anyways as soon as you get off at Kanyakumari… it doesn’t feel anything like the  Kanyakumari you have imagined… the bliss, the enchantment and the convulsion of the tri-sea… The whole picture that you have about it, vanishes in seconds… It’s become a hub for all commercial dwellers… Most of the restaurants where I was staying are run by north indians, marwaris etc.. serving Punjabi food, heck I even ate at a place called ‘Punjabi Dhaba’ just near Hotel Sea View… enroute the sunrise point.

 

Now, speaking of the hotel that I stayed in… the biggest challenge out here arrives… Securing a hotel room because I’m single.. No I didn’t mean my marital status or relationship status on Facebook… I was alone.. 1 guy!! Yes, travelling like a nomad wanderer for 10 days, I hadn’t shaved and definitely looked like a terrorist with loads of weapons in my backpack 😛 Well anyways, seemingly as imagined, just like Rameshwaram, Kanyakumari also has a directive from the cops/govt. not to give accommodation to ‘single guys.’

 

So yes, it had to do with the high sensitivity around the area with the Sri Lanka issue… I was also told stories by some in Rameshwaram that there have been cases of guys who had come alone… and committed suicide in Lord Rama’s sharan… to get eternal bliss… What the hell… I just looked at myself in the mirror… Heck I certainly look like both of these potential cases… Damn, first thing I’m gonna do is get a shave… 🙂

 

Anyways, after loooking around for half an hour, carrying the heavy backpack on my back and shelling out a few extra bucks, I got myself a room.. decent enough, but not certainly for the price I paid Rs. 1200… woah… there goes my budget and I’m already two days behind now.. Most probably, will have to skip Kodaikanal…

 

So I settled down and decided to go out in the evening and get some nice shots of the beach to calm my mind especially after the rough ride that I had been through, esp with the constant honking of the bus driver as I was sitting a couple of seats right behind the driver…

 

First shot of Kanyakumari...

First shot of Kanyakumari...

 

 

 

Peace of Mind

Peace of Mind

 

 

 

I need a house like that...

I need a house like that...

 

 

So, I visited the Mahatma Gandhi Mandapam and if you go the top section, you can get really great views of the ocean that sets you apart from all the madness of the world… An enchanting bliss with the breeze blowing in my face, made my irritation vanish in seconds… I was feeling much lighter and much better now… Certainly a Kanyakumari that I had imagined and hoped to look forward to early in the morning the next day… especially the Vivekananda Memorial Rock… I heard it is blissful 🙂

 

 

 

Mahatma Gandhi Mandapam

Mahatma Gandhi Mandapam

 

 

 

Share