Varanasi/Benares Journal Day 3-4

Varanasi / Benares Day 3 - Waited 8 very long hours for the Vibhuti [sacred ash] "Express". Winter fog has an adverse effect on Indian trains. The Moghul Sarai Junction was teeming with filth/stench/rats/mice/stray dogs/a few trash eating Brahma bulls / thieves / cold drafts. It left me aching with fatigue. We gave up and went home.

Lounging the next day at Amitabha's gardened, family compound was what this doctor needed: joking around, eating savory, home-cooked food, extra asanas, meditation, and naps. Doin nothin is good.

Benares Day 4 - Vishalakshi Mandir [Eye of the Universe] - the tradition: this is where the eye of Sati fell, making it a Shakti Peeth (seat of Divine Female Power ~ Sati, Shiva's first wife, was dismembered into a 108 pieces by Vishnu's Chakra to quell Shiva's Tandava (angry dance of universe destruction). Sati [Truth] had self-immolated after her Father, Daksha (the old goat of ego consciousness) humiliated her for not inviting Shiva (absolute pure consciousness to a special party]. The Mandir was down dark, wet and twisting, stone gallies; we strolled in without a hassle, sat down on the cold stone floor, and did some parts of Devi Puja and Chandi Phat. Afterwards, Satyananda took us to the KalBhairav Mandir [Black, Destructive form of Shiva which guards each of the 108 pieces of Sati all around Bharat, (Indian subcontinent). He is in a rakshasa (demon) form guarding the pieces of Sati so she cannot reassemble into the wholeness of universal truth.] We chanted the Thousand Names of Shiva in a side arcade. The temple priests gave us some black thread and a black tilack, and an occasional small bottle of whiskey...love those Hindus, they walk the talk of paradoxical reality. Some Hindu pilgrims and temple priests joined in the chant. It turned into a small love fest with the locals. Maybe the Johnny Walker Black helped!?