Tuesday, June 1, 2010

I Have The Hijra Vardan

Vardan means blessings even in disguise , I have been blessed by the Almighty to shoot the Hijras , no two ways about it, hijras I dont need to stalk they follow me and we meet on the crossroads of life,there are places if I go I know I will meet hijras , but for some reason if I am unable to go there I will still meet hijras within the spectrum of my surroundings.

My going to Ajmer this year looks a very distant dream..I dont think I am destined for this trip , but thats Okay, God works in strange ways , I dont hold this against him.

Similarly every year I try my best but have never been able to go to Koovagam.

All my friends go there I am left behind but yet I get hijras to shoot and I have shot over 11000 hijra pictures all on my Flickr photostream.

I have composed poems for the hijras trying to demystify the hijra angst , this genre I call hijra poetry.

And on Flickr it is mostly hijra lovers , crossdressers who add me as friend.

And I have shown my solidarity with the hijras and the gay community shooting the Gay Parade in Mumbai fort two consecutive years.

My Hijra Guru is the iconic Laxmi Narayan Tripathi without her blessings I would have not reached the pinnacle of photographing the Hijra angst.

The HIjra human pain , the hijra anguish , the hijra struggle and hijra hardships

So this is my tribute to her and hope she prays for me at the Shrine of Khwajah Gharib Nawaz the Patron Saint and Protector of Hijras and Humanity.

And this was shot at the Maryamma feast Sion Koliwada where the hijra in the yellow saree has a 18 feet steel rod pierced into her cheeks from one end to the other ..

Hijra Devotees of Maryamma Sion Koliwada

The Hijra in the yellow saree is a devout hardcore follower of Goddess M,aryamma , he had come all the way from Nasik to have his cheeks pierced with a 18 feet rod,I shot him extensively and he was very serious not a smile on his face though his Hijra guru in the red and gray saree was very proud of him , later on more hijras joined the procession and for me he was the main crowd puller after the two guys hung on hooks from their backs on a pulley on a crane.

The hijra guru was very kind to me and loved to have her pictures taken , most of the hijras from Dharavi came to take the blessings of this hijra in the yellow saree.

Som Bhatia Punjabi Devotee of Maryamma

He is a hardcore devotee and pierces his body since 12 years , he wears the Singapore Juggernaut , his Maryamma procession was on 29 May from Sion Fort but I could not make it.

He is a famous Sion Koliwada caterer and event manager and he told me the Goddess Maryamma had been very kind and added to his success in life.

Sick and Tired of Google Buzz

I was excited when it was launched but now it is a frickin bore , open Gmail, open Google Buzz ,. fuck who has the time.

Cross Blogging from Flickr to Twitter is the best way to pimp my blogs on Twitter and also Facebook,,


Google Buzz cant take the place of Twitter at all.

A Kodak Moment Kept Alive

Origin of Goddess Mari Ammen- Sion Koliwada

126,047 items / 919,741 views


pattini.org/mariamman.htm

The Origin of Goddess Mari Amman

Goddess Mari Amman is revered and worshipped widely among Tamil villagers across Sri Lanka and South India, where she is regarded as having the power to bestow or remove life-threatening fevers like smallpox and chicken pox. Despite Mari Amman’s great popularity to this day, the origins of her cult remain obscure. The oral tradition concerning her origin, however, may be summarized as follows:

In ancient India there once lived a rishi named Jamadhakni together with his sahadharmini (nowadays called ‘wife’) Renuka Devi and their four sons. They had built an ashram on the bank of the river Ganges, the holy river descended from the heavens in Hindu mythology, where they lived an austere but happy life spent in prayer, worship and meditation.

Jamadhakni would customarily wake up from sleep as early as 4 a.m. and ask Renuka Devi to bring a vessel of water from the Ganges for his early morning pujas. Rishis like Jamadhakni would perform pujas and meditation between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m., which is known as Brahma Muhurtham, i.e. before sunrise. It is said that, after the sun rises, the sun god takes half the punyam or blessings accrued from one’s pujas. So the ideal time for pujas is before sunrise.

Renuka Devi used to go down to the Ganges empty handed, without any vessel, and due to her tapa balam or benefits obtained through austerities, she would wade through the waters of the Ganges, collect riverbed mud, mould an earthen pot on the spot, and use it to bring water for her husband’s pujas. This miracle was a daily occurrence.

One day as she entered the Ganges, however, she happened to see in the water the reflection of a Gandharva flying nearly over her head. Her mind seized upon the beauty of that Gandharva and inwardly she retained his image. Her mind began to waver, as she reflected that there were also handsome young men in the world, whereas her husband and his fellow rishis were old men having long matted hair and gray beards.

In the process, Renuka Devi’s inward chastity collapsed and, on account of this, she found that she was unable to mould a clay vessel out of the riverbed mud. Without wasting any further time she went back to her husband and expressed her inability to mould the earthen vessel.

Jamadhakni prayed to God Shiva, and came to know the reason for her being unable to mould the vessel. Accepting the command of Lord Shiva, he decided to punish her severely— by beheading her.

He ordered their sons—first, second and third—to behead their mother Renuka Devi. But all refused, pleading that there was no precedent. However, their fourth son, Parasurama, agreed to carry out his father’s severe order. At once, Parasurama, the avatar of Maha Vishnu, beheaded his mother with his axe weapon.

On beheading his mother, Parasurama turned to his father and said that he had carried out the order. Jamadhakni was pleased and offered to grant his son Parasurama a boon befitting the heavy task assigned to him.

On being assured that the boon would surely be granted, Parasurama requested that his mother be back to life. Jamadhakni, though indignant at the outset, was compelled to grant the boon to maintain his word.

Jamadhakni said that the water for that day’s puja had not yet been fetched. However, a remnant of the previous day’s puja water kept in a kabandalam (vessel with handle and spout) was found and sprinkled on Renuka Devi’s body, attaching the severed head.

On sprinkling water on the head and torso, Renuka Devi came back to life. However Jamadhakni told her that she no longer had any place in the ashram as she was an incarnation of goddess Parvati, henceforth called Mari Amma by order of Lord Shiva.

Renuka Devi, or rather Mari Amma, was starting to leave the ashram when from a distance an army of brigands approached Jamadhakni asking for drinking water. The rishi was now in deep meditation (dhyana) and could not hear the tumult. The warlord of the brigands turned wild and told his followers to cut off the head of the rishi, which they did. Since Jamadhakni died in a sacred place surrounded by ashrams, his body could not be kept for long and, accordingly, a funeral pyre was built and his body was cremated.

Renuka Devi, on seeing her husband’s body being burnt, returned and leaped upon the funeral pyre, as a last mark of respect for her rishi husband. Indra from heaven ordered Varuna, the rain god, to drench the fire with sudden heavy rain so that the fire would be extinquished. But in the meantime, Renuka Devi had been severely burned and her dress was also burnt partly.

Then, badly burned but still alive, Renuka Devi managed to walk to a nearby village where, on seeing her familiar face, the villagers made her lay on a long plantain leaf coated with castor oil and applied turmeric powder and neem leaves. One woman touched Renuka Devi and, finding her feverish, ordered that she should be given tender coconut water and butter milk. Then Renuka Devi went to the next village inhabited by washer men who, upon seeing Renuka Devi’s burnt sari, offered her a pure white sari and a red sari that is normally worn by Mari Amma.

On descending from Mount Kailasa, Lord Shiva appeared before Renuka Devi and pronounced her as none other than Uma Devi, Parameswari or Jagadeeswari. Ever since then, Renuka Devi has been called Mari Amman and other names according to local traditions. Because of her association with burning fever, Goddess Mari Amman is respected as omnipotent in every village, guarding people from severe fevers like small pox and chicken pox.

Velamur Veeraraghavan Seshadri (b. 1925) toured villages of Tamil Nadu for twelve years from 1983-95 with Samayapuram Mariamman, singing bhajans and expounding Hindu religious principles. He presently serves as Administrative Officer of Sri Teyvayanai Amman Temple, Kataragama, Sri Lanka.

Origin of Goddess Mari Ammen- Sion Koliwada

126,047 items / 919,741 views


pattini.org/mariamman.htm

The Origin of Goddess Mari Amman

Goddess Mari Amman is revered and worshipped widely among Tamil villagers across Sri Lanka and South India, where she is regarded as having the power to bestow or remove life-threatening fevers like smallpox and chicken pox. Despite Mari Amman’s great popularity to this day, the origins of her cult remain obscure. The oral tradition concerning her origin, however, may be summarized as follows:

In ancient India there once lived a rishi named Jamadhakni together with his sahadharmini (nowadays called ‘wife’) Renuka Devi and their four sons. They had built an ashram on the bank of the river Ganges, the holy river descended from the heavens in Hindu mythology, where they lived an austere but happy life spent in prayer, worship and meditation.

Jamadhakni would customarily wake up from sleep as early as 4 a.m. and ask Renuka Devi to bring a vessel of water from the Ganges for his early morning pujas. Rishis like Jamadhakni would perform pujas and meditation between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m., which is known as Brahma Muhurtham, i.e. before sunrise. It is said that, after the sun rises, the sun god takes half the punyam or blessings accrued from one’s pujas. So the ideal time for pujas is before sunrise.

Renuka Devi used to go down to the Ganges empty handed, without any vessel, and due to her tapa balam or benefits obtained through austerities, she would wade through the waters of the Ganges, collect riverbed mud, mould an earthen pot on the spot, and use it to bring water for her husband’s pujas. This miracle was a daily occurrence.

One day as she entered the Ganges, however, she happened to see in the water the reflection of a Gandharva flying nearly over her head. Her mind seized upon the beauty of that Gandharva and inwardly she retained his image. Her mind began to waver, as she reflected that there were also handsome young men in the world, whereas her husband and his fellow rishis were old men having long matted hair and gray beards.

In the process, Renuka Devi’s inward chastity collapsed and, on account of this, she found that she was unable to mould a clay vessel out of the riverbed mud. Without wasting any further time she went back to her husband and expressed her inability to mould the earthen vessel.

Jamadhakni prayed to God Shiva, and came to know the reason for her being unable to mould the vessel. Accepting the command of Lord Shiva, he decided to punish her severely— by beheading her.

He ordered their sons—first, second and third—to behead their mother Renuka Devi. But all refused, pleading that there was no precedent. However, their fourth son, Parasurama, agreed to carry out his father’s severe order. At once, Parasurama, the avatar of Maha Vishnu, beheaded his mother with his axe weapon.

On beheading his mother, Parasurama turned to his father and said that he had carried out the order. Jamadhakni was pleased and offered to grant his son Parasurama a boon befitting the heavy task assigned to him.

On being assured that the boon would surely be granted, Parasurama requested that his mother be back to life. Jamadhakni, though indignant at the outset, was compelled to grant the boon to maintain his word.

Jamadhakni said that the water for that day’s puja had not yet been fetched. However, a remnant of the previous day’s puja water kept in a kabandalam (vessel with handle and spout) was found and sprinkled on Renuka Devi’s body, attaching the severed head.

On sprinkling water on the head and torso, Renuka Devi came back to life. However Jamadhakni told her that she no longer had any place in the ashram as she was an incarnation of goddess Parvati, henceforth called Mari Amma by order of Lord Shiva.

Renuka Devi, or rather Mari Amma, was starting to leave the ashram when from a distance an army of brigands approached Jamadhakni asking for drinking water. The rishi was now in deep meditation (dhyana) and could not hear the tumult. The warlord of the brigands turned wild and told his followers to cut off the head of the rishi, which they did. Since Jamadhakni died in a sacred place surrounded by ashrams, his body could not be kept for long and, accordingly, a funeral pyre was built and his body was cremated.

Renuka Devi, on seeing her husband’s body being burnt, returned and leaped upon the funeral pyre, as a last mark of respect for her rishi husband. Indra from heaven ordered Varuna, the rain god, to drench the fire with sudden heavy rain so that the fire would be extinquished. But in the meantime, Renuka Devi had been severely burned and her dress was also burnt partly.

Then, badly burned but still alive, Renuka Devi managed to walk to a nearby village where, on seeing her familiar face, the villagers made her lay on a long plantain leaf coated with castor oil and applied turmeric powder and neem leaves. One woman touched Renuka Devi and, finding her feverish, ordered that she should be given tender coconut water and butter milk. Then Renuka Devi went to the next village inhabited by washer men who, upon seeing Renuka Devi’s burnt sari, offered her a pure white sari and a red sari that is normally worn by Mari Amma.

On descending from Mount Kailasa, Lord Shiva appeared before Renuka Devi and pronounced her as none other than Uma Devi, Parameswari or Jagadeeswari. Ever since then, Renuka Devi has been called Mari Amman and other names according to local traditions. Because of her association with burning fever, Goddess Mari Amman is respected as omnipotent in every village, guarding people from severe fevers like small pox and chicken pox.

Velamur Veeraraghavan Seshadri (b. 1925) toured villages of Tamil Nadu for twelve years from 1983-95 with Samayapuram Mariamman, singing bhajans and expounding Hindu religious principles. He presently serves as Administrative Officer of Sri Teyvayanai Amman Temple, Kataragama, Sri Lanka.

The Greastest Show on Earth .. Maryamma Feast Sion Koliwada 2010

127,768 items / 933,123 views

I shot the Sion Koliwada Maryamma Feast 2010 for the first time , and all this belongs to my segment called Hope and Hindutva at Flickr.. A collection of Hindu ethos shot by me barefeet .

I was invited to Sion Koliwada by Raja the rod and hook piercer on 25 May 2010.

This is a very long series I shot from noon till about 9.30pm and luckily the rod piercings and the hooks I did not require flash as there was plenty of light.

It was here I shot the rod piercing of a Hijra who had come to perform this ritual with his Hijra guru from Nasik.

An I shot him almost non stop , he was one brave Hijra on the streets of Sion Koliwada.

Now the most interesting item on the agenda was a guy who was hung to a pulley on a crane with hooks attached to his back and his calf..

From the hooks on his side another guy was hung with hooks on his back..

The top guy is Harish I forgot the younger guys name..they hung precariously and carried on with the procession for about 5 to 6 hours..

I shot all this but aborted the procession before it reached the Maryamma Temple , I did not have the strength or the energy.

There was a German lady who accidentally shooting this event too.

And another photographer called Happy friend of Habib Nasser.

I shot all this on two memory cards total about 6 GB..

Since the three years I have been shooting this event at Juhu Mahim and Worli , this was the most intoxicating and exciting one for me as a incorrigible hardcore street photographer

There was possession her but the slaughter of animals I was told takes the next day after this ritual..

I was called for another Maryamma Feast on 29 May at Sion Koliwada different venue but I gave it a skip, my personal life is in doldrums making me feel uninvolved with my photography.

Peace of mind without stress is required to shoot such events according to me... a lot of stamina and energy too.

I shot this barefeet and in my diabetic condition.

I dedicate this series to my mentor Dr Glenn Losack MD .. a master photographer who has shot all this as Thaipussam in Malaysia..

.

Spectral Beauty of the Hijab

Optional title
Hijab and the Christian World..

the only garment
that gives the
christian world
unending
sleepless
nights
over the hijab
the white world
fights
choking
the spirituality
of a muslim
woman's rights
wearing the hijab
the white mans
wrath excites
a garment
of modesty
they love to spite
the hijab
a beauty in
spectral light
gets the
European angst
uptight
banning
it from public places
condemning it
like a terrorist garment
the helpless muslim
womans plight

Posted at YouTube Community Tab House of Trolls

I dont share my number at all . I dont wish to socialize with people I dont know Thank you for your comments ,, Blessings I am 68 yea...