Good Friday at Chamundi Hills

This year’s Good Friday will be cherished for a long time since I could observe it in a very special way at Chamundi Hills, Mysore. I never imagined making a visit to the place on this day of great significance.
I was quite sure that the four days off from work starting with Maundy Thursday would help me to refresh and rejuvenate a while from the hectic schedule. I headed to Mysore on Thursday by the local train. The destination was, of course, the habitat, where my friend Vipin hibernates after resigning his job in Kolkata. At his apartment, I was quite sure of being fed four or five times a day. So, my only passion was to sleep, sleep and sleep. All his attempts to take me out during the day were in vain. In the afternoon, I found sometime to have a glance into the life of Julian-The monk who sold his Ferrari. What striked me in those first chapters was the philosophy that everything in life happens with a purpose.
On Friday morning, I woke up to the thought of making a ‘Way of the Cross’ as reparation for my sins, if I have committed any during the last year. My mother always insisted on her children to make it on this day. The thousand steps to Chamundi Hills suddenly flashed in my mind. Why can’t I make it a way of the Cross? After all, this place is known for the victory of justice over injustice and goodness over vice. In the life of Christ too the way of the cross leads to the triumph of truth and justice. My companion was more than happy to accompany me when the thought was shared with him.
In the afternoon, I found myself in a bigger group with Vini, my pal’s elder sister and a law graduate. Then, Vimcy, a Keralite and Teju, hailing from Manipur, also dropped in. These two are students of a leading law college in the town. They too were out for a walk as they were busy with various assignments in the morning.
I found Teju as the most enthusiastic and energetic member of our team. She climbed each step like a disciplined NCC cadet. Vimcy, being very much bothered about her ailing stomach, was always asking for a helping hand from Teju, which the latter offered willfully. Vini’s thoughts were, of course, centered around the new job she got on the same day in human resources management. Teju, in the meantime, shared with me the desirability of being a multi skilled employee during this time of slump. Her focus is now on doing the company secretary programme, which she thinks would give some extra boost to her prospects in the job market.
Reaching the top of the hill, we spent some time in the temple premises tasting tender coconuts to ease the little thirst and pains those thousand steps had given us. At twilight, the city, from the top, looked awesome with lights burning everywhere likes embers.
I found some Muslim women also there wearing burkhas. This place is one of tourist attraction in the city. Who knows if they were there with similar intentions like me? Anyway, in the presence of the Divine, there is no caste, colour, creed or religion. Everyone is like the sheep under the Great Shepherd.
I really felt grateful to my friends. We are one and together in the search of the ultimate good. We all cherish a collective dream for a better tomorrow. It would give us great satisfaction to know that our presence and efforts in this beautiful planet have contributed to make it a better place to dwell in.
We will flock to anywhere the moment we feel that it would give us a glimpse to the ultimate reality. We love these temples, churches, mosques, idols, monuments, traditions and rituals. And, our endeavour is always to find the divinity attached to them.
Do not come to us, you, forces of evil and malice. Do not ask our creed or breed. Our preference is not to be polarised and segregated. Let us continue to live as one body with one spirit and as we forge ahead thousands may be touched and transformed. And, we may grow to a world of all encompassing love that is beyond all the boundaries and limits set by our predecessors.

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