Maha Kumbabishekam at the Gangaikondacholapuram

Travel

How can I ever comprehend the magnificent feeling that takes over me every time I visit this marvel of Cholas? It was after 85 years that the GKC was getting ready to witness the Kumbabishekam on 2-2-2017. I swept aside everything on my plate to be there on this historic day and witness the spectacle. Reaching early has its advantages, so I headed off a day earlier and rested my anxiety for the dawn. I reached early in the morning, and people had started coming in already. It was nice to see the crowd slowly populating the green sprawl of the temple complex. The poojas started in full swing, and everyone were in sync in a while. The collective energy was amazing. What was also interesting was the people from different walks of life coming in and celebrating the occasion. From Yogis to common people, everyone had their own space to rejoice the spirit in air. Renowned Shivanadiars had travelled from far to lighten up the event with music and dance. The holy water after the Kumbabishekam was sprinkled over the people and there was quite a fight to get touched by the divine droplets.

On the other side, the event management on the whole could have been better for there were hassles on basic amenities on a lot of instances. The litter the public made on the clean & green grounds of the temples was also a pity sight in the end. If only everyone shares the responsibility to preserve the place, can we carry this legacy forward in the right manner.

Of course, out casting all these was the strong thread of hope that prevailed all along in the minds of everyone gathered there. I always had this aversion of attending to temples when there is a festival/event (in fact any place for that matter) guaranteeing crowd. ‘Why to go and squeeze through all the noise?’ is the usual question I have like many of you. But after I made it to the Kumbabishekam this time, that thought stands changed. Yes, there will be crowd, and yes there will be a tussle to make your way through. But in the end, when you are there feeling the energy in the air, of unanimous hope and faith, all you can do is submit yourself to the vibe and stay elated. It was a treat to see all the statues and the little carvings reflect the beliefs of the one lakh people who gathered there.

I had a memorable time and drove back with a lot of memories and energy. I look forward to visit this magical space again. Until then, I shall relive the memories in these pictures. Join me in the reminiscence.

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