During our recent visit to Nasik we visited one temple where a lot of Hindu Holy men (Sanysi) live. My colleague managed to get us to speak to one of those. It was almost a bit embarrassing to speak to him. I mean. He is a Holy person. I’m not. How should I address him? What could I ask about, and what could I absolutely not ask about? But well, we managed to have at least some kind of discussion. He said that he had been living (had been a guru here since 1983, and had been living here since earlier) in this temple since 1983, when he decided to follow his guru. That person had now “moved on” as they say here, so now he is the guru and younger people come to him and treated him as the guru. When I asked about what he usually does in a normal day, he said that it was a lot of praying. He also has to teach the new students, and lead them in their prayers. In addition it is the normal things of eating and doing things at the temple(a daily life of student would include prayers, exercising, working at the cattle farm, cleaning of the ashram, preparation of food). They had a small kind of farm there, so quite some time is devoted to handle the animals.
Apart from these, the sanyasi’s travel to the different Kumbh’s that keep on happening at regular interval. The students would usually go there earlier and setup temporary camps and shelters to ensure healthy and clean living environment, manage setup for boarding and living of devotees who come to such holy events.
People who are Sanyasi’s are regarded as having reached the topmost and final stage of the ashram system in the Hinduism belief. People at this stage are completely withdrawn from the world. This is the time of complete dedication to spiritual pursuits, the seeking of spiritual freedom and practicing meditation.
At last I asked him if he do follow the life outside the temple. He said that he does that, and read newspapers regularly. At least that is what I thought he said. If that is the case, he is well aware that India did beat Bangladesh in the opening match of the cricket world cup on Saturday.
Talk to you soon!