India

photo reportage by Wieslaw Sadurski


NANDIN is the name of a white bull, which represents the liberated human soul, on whom rides Shiva. Which means that Lord Shiva is the protector and the embodiment of Dharma and justice. Note bells and garlands of flowers on the painted corners. He looked me in the eye, when photographed, he led me looked as if he wanted me to remember.

Two days later, I saw him harnessed to the car, shot the photo and I walked on, when suddenly he punched me in the face with a garland of rings. I wipe the blood from broken lips when villager walks, releases a bull with a harness that goes into the street. I'm showing peasant my face, finger pointing bull. - Nandin? Nandin? - calls peasant in disbelief, and falls at my feet.

There are already around a bunch of people, a boy translates into English, that hitting by the bull of Shiva is a great blessing. I change the paper handkerchiefs, l stop rickshaw, I'm going to the ashram. The driver argues that I should go to the hospital, but I know that my wounds heal quickly. I wash the face, sit at the stone table in the courtyard of the ashram and write in a notebook. A bit broken nose and upper lip, swollen left cheek.

Under the holy mountain Arunachala events are mesured by heart. Bulls and cows in India are gentle, Nandin wanted to rid himselves of the flies, and woke me just by the way. And woke up to what? To eternal life!



Trimurti is a concept in which the cosmic functions of creation, maintenance and destruction are personified in the forms of Brahma the Creator, Vishnu the Guardian and Shiva the Destroyer.

Lord Shiva has 1008 names and is a master of dance, yoga and art patron, ascet, benefactor, head of the family, the destroyer. Symbolizes killing and renewing aspect of divinity. Dance of Shiva symbolizes the destruction and the creation of the cosmos constantly made by him. If he would stop dancing - the world would cease to exist, but the dance of Shiva never stops, so the world will not perish. We are so lucky!

Shaivism is the oldest of the four major sects of Hinduism. The followers of Saivism worship Shiva as the Supreme Being. They believe that Shiva is the creator, protector, destroyer, revealer and corrector of all that is.

Lord Shiva is often depicted with a third eye; when he loses patience, third eye opens, burns and turns all into ashes. On his head is a crescent; waxing and waning moon cycle represents the time during which the creation evolves from beginning to end. In his right hand is a trident, which can be understood as symbolic unity of the three worlds of man - his inner world, the next world and the general world.

Lord Shiva has 6 heads, of which only five are visible, while the sixth is visible only for the enlightened. Lord Shiva smears his body with ashes, what represents the end of all material existence. He wears five serpents on the neck and a garland of skulls as a decoration.
In the Mahabharata, Shiva is depicted as a standard of integrity, power and terror, as well as a form of honor, joy and radiance. The duality of the terrible and beautiful attributes of Shiva appears in contrasting names. It occurs both as an ascetic yogi and as host - exclusive roles in Hindu society.
Lord Shiva is depicted with four arms. Holding ax and hand corner of the upper arm, in the lower pair bow and arrow. After the destruction of Tripura, the three cities of iron, silver and gold - on earth, in heaven and paradise - painted on his forehead three streaks of ashes. It has become a symbol of Shiva and is still practiced today by Sadhus and Shaivitus.

Varaha Cave Temple is a rock-cut cave temple located at Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu.
The temple is a small monolithic rock-cut temple with a mandapa carved into the rock face of pink granite formations, dating from the 7th century. The cave reflects a transitional style of architecture in its columns mounted on seated lions and frescoes carved on the walls inside the cave.

The walls inside the cave have several striking mythological scenes carved in relief. Vishnu rescuing the earth, Vishnu taking three strides, Gaja Laksmi and Durga are all impressive panels carved in the Adivaraha Cave. These monolithic temples are known as Rathas and it is an innovation of Pallava king AD 630-668.

A huge rock sloping from south to north was utilized judiciously to cutout different forms of temple, besides few animal sculptures. Relief sculpture on the wall with perfect balancing of the masculine and feminine features is considered to be one of the finest specimen of early Pallava plastic art. Their stupis are still attached with the bedrock.





SADHU
means a holy man, a religious ascetic, who decided to become liberated in the fourth and last period of life, through meditation and contemplation of Brahman.
Sadhu is a sannyasi, who gave up life achievement, home, family, caste and account - to live in a cave, forest or a temple, dedicated to spiritual practice.

In India live 4-5 million sadhus. They are widely respected for holiness, sometimes arouse concern because they can cast a spell. There are many sects, but all have the aim of achieving moksha - freedom, liberation, life in communion with God.

SADHU
is initiated by a guru, from whom he receives a new name and mantra meditation practice. The guru decides whether and when - after a period of service - sadhu can embark on the ultimate journey. Which requires every possible sacrifice.
And so - sadhus are considered dead - so among themselves as well as against Indian law. They live with donations of food. They do not take charity, which differ from beggars, shown here on a separate page.

Some live naked, smeared with ashes of burned corpses. Others live in caves, in the solitude of meditation. For many, sadhu brotherhood is important. They often use marijuana and hashish, which act as the holy communion.


Varaha Cave Temple is a rock-cut cave temple located at Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu. The temple is a small monolithic rock-cut temple with a mandapa carved into the rock face of pink granite formations, dating from the 7th century.

The cave reflects a transitional style of architecture in its columns mounted on seated lions and frescoes carved on the walls inside the cave. The walls inside the cave have several striking mythological scenes carved in relief. Vishnu rescuing the earth, Vishnu taking three strides, Gaja Laksmi and Durga are all impressive panels carved in the Adivaraha Cave.

These monolithic temples are known as Rathas and it is an innovation of Pallava king AD 630-668. A huge rock sloping from south to north was utilized judiciously to cutout different forms of temple, besides few animal sculptures. Relief sculpture on the wall with perfect balancing of the masculine and feminine features is considered to be one of the finest specimen of early Pallava plastic art. Their stupis are still attached with the bedrock.