The decision to visit Divya Desams was not planned; it was by instinct. Though I was always fascinated by spirituality, I never had any goal of pursuing any specific yatra/journey. However, these things took a turn in the year 2016. April 3, 2016 to be
precise. Following my Darshan of Sri Ranganathan at Sri Rangam (This was my umpteen visit to this holy shrine), I was returning back to Chennai in train. I was allotted a side lower berth in the train, which was my favorite. Recalling the past, I have found out that all my life transforming decisions had sparked during a night train travel upon a side lower berth.
Coming back to the train travel on April 3, 2016. After getting the train ticket verified, I was gazing put through the window in a reclining position. Since the next day was the beginning of a week, I was mind-grinding my tasks and deliverable that needed to be accomplished. Somewhere during that process, the number 108 came into picture. I still have no idea why I thought of that number, It just popped out of nowhere. It was no way related to it. It has nothing to do with my desk telephone, issue request ID, employee ID or whatsoever. It stood in my mind for a solid 10 seconds. I wasn’t able to think about for that brief period. Then, it moved out. I was not able to get the significance of it for a while. Then it struck me. 108. The Divya Desams. The holy abodes of Lord Vishnu. Was it that ? I googled it and I had read about it immediately. Was it a calling from the Energy ?Was it asking me to pursue it ? I was clueless. However, I wanted to give it a shot. I thought of planning a visit to Divya Desams nearby Chennai and then see how it works out.
Once I initiated this journey, everything came into place. My parents, friends and relatives encouraged me to pursue this. They never asked me “Why?” “How?” “you cannot do it” or anything like that. Somehow, the relevant travel books caught my eye in the bookstores, even though I wasn’t planning to buy them. I was fortunate to find modes of transport easily to the places I needed to visit. Bus, train, flight, auto, bullock cart; I have been in all. Everything around me took me towards my journey. Here I am, writing this to you all after completing my visits to 101 Divya Desams. 5 more to go. (Though it is 108, visiting 106 is only possible in this world. The rest 2 are believed to be in the heavenly realms and it is said that the Lord himself would accompany you for visiting those)
Now, the most important part. Putting forward few questions which I have often encountered.
Yeah. I do. I have always believed that there is a power above us. You can call it as Vishnu, Allah or Jesus. But, I strongly believe that it exists among and above us. Keeping it scientific, cosmos, energy, matter. They all are interconnected. They are linked to us in many ways and I feel that religion is something that mankind had develop to establish that link with the Energy above. Just like the “The Secret“. The Law of Attraction.
No. Definitely not. Energy is common. Religions are ways to tap into that eternal space. Since, I was brought up as a practicing Hindu, I pursued it. To keep it on a lighter side, it doesnt matter having a Android, Windows or iOS, unless you get the CALLING right. Simple. Choose what you are comfortable it.
A small correction. It made me a more spiritual one. Religion and spiritual are too different things, though interconnected. Being more religious makes one believe in one religion alone and it nullifies others.Spiritual, on the other other hand, shows that the paths are different and anything is acceptable until you reach the right place. Well, this is my personal opinion.
No. Not at all. I believe in going with the flow. With the intuitions. The thought had occurred to me in a flash. There has to be a reason for it. But, rather than waiting for the reason, I first felt that the intuition must be acknowledged. Hence, the journey.
எண்ணம் போல் வாழ்க்கை | Thoughts become your destiny
Tamil Nadu is rightly called the ‘Land of Temples’ with thousands of temples of various Tamil dynasties adding to the beauty of the land. A trip down south takes us down the memory lane of the great Tamil rulers who have built the magnificent stone structures, brick temples and cave temples across Tamil Nadu that have stood the test of time and survived thousands of years. If stones could talk, the carvings of the great temples of Tamil Nadu would reveal the secrets of the ancestral past. As we admire the Tamil kings for their creativity, architecture, urban planning, administration and their practices, their farsightedness to inscribe valuable information in the temples for the future generations, requires a special mention.
Sasi from “Walkwithus” sharing details on the evolution of temples in Tamil Nadu
In March 2017, around 20 of us in CTC (Chennai Trekking Club) signed up for…
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Visiting Kinnaur and spending some time with locals was high on my bucket list for a long time. Finally, I got a chance to check out Sangla valley before our Lamkhaga Pass trek in May 2017, thanks to the impeccable planning of Gautam Baliga ji. On 18th of May, Gautam, Aashish and I boarded the only Shimla to Sangla direct bus to reach our destination for the day – the Sangla valley.
Mesmerizing views on the way to Sangla
After an 8 to 9-hour journey in the HRTC bus, we reached Sangla at 5 pm. Tucked in the lower Himalayas in the district of Kinnaur, the Sangla valley is one of the most picturesque valleys in Himachal, located around 25 kms away from the Indo-Tibet border. Sangla derives it names from a Tibetan word Sangala which means “passage of light”.
Sangla – A blend of culture and natural beauty
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Nestled in the hills of lesser Himalayas and about a 2 km hike from Sangla, Kamru is a blend of heritage and natural beauty. While, we get to see the most beautiful landscapes in Sangla valley, the best view of its splendour could be seen from the top of the Kamru fort. After a night stay in Sangla valley, Gautham, Aashish and I started early the next day to explore Kamru.
Kamru village and Kamru fort as seen Sangla valley
Stepping into the historic Kamru village
As we ascended up slowly and reached the Kamru Badhri Vishal mandir, we met Hariram ji, an elderly locallite of Kamru village, serving as the postmaster there. After getting to know that we were heading to Harshil via Lamkhaga pass, he couldn’t resist sharing his experience of crossing the pass way back in 1980s/1990s with me and Aashish.
Entry to Badri Vishal Mandir in…
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