Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lessons from a Banyan Sapling

I captured the above picture on the mobile phone camera. There is nothing significant in this picture at a first glance. Depending on the eye of the beholder there is a pillar, asphalt floor, cars... yes it is a parking lot. This is the parking lot of DFW Airport. The reason for this plant attracting my attention is simple. The surroundings are completely hostile, but still a tiny seed has taken root and broken through the asphalt, concrete and tarmac to be precise and grown into a sapling. Whether it grows into a tree or not is not the matter of consideration. The fact that this tiny seed without anyone caring for it or watering it has been able to pierce through the earth, gather nutrients and grow to this extent proves its mettle and determination.
I had heard a quote earlier in my life "The greatest oak tree was once a tiny seed". That is what I feel a lesson for all of us, be resilient, determined and never let your eyes stray from your goal. Then like this sapling here we too will be able to pierce through all the obstacles and succeed in reaching our goal.
On a lighter note
Even the mighty America can't tame nature. Plants grow even in the most strongly built parking lots.

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Monday, August 24, 2009

Home Pooja Pictures

I had blogged about Ganesha Chathurthi celebrations in DFW and how we participated in various places. This was a kinda test for me to remember what we would do while I was in India and try to replicate the same as closely as possible. Of course it would be difficult to arrange for 108 types of leaves and blades of grass here unless we lived in our own home with a backyard. Our worship was simple, it would have been better had my parents been here. Hopefully next year we'll be with parents either here or in India to celebrate the festivals.
Here are some pictures of the worship we offered at home.

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Ganesha Festival Celebrations

Ganesha Idols on Sale at Taj Mahal Imports Today Hindus living across the continent of America celebrated the festival of Ganesha Chathurthi. While people like us performed simple to elaborate rituals at home with offerings of Modaks, fruits, and flowers. Hundreds of Hindus congregated with families at the several temples across the DFW Metro area to view, participate and offer ceremonial worship to the Universal Lord of knowledge.
Later in the afternoon we visited Taj Mahal Imports which in my opinion is the largest Indian store in the metroplex. The store had an array of Ganesha idols for sale which were being eagerly bought by devotees. Evening we participated in the exuberant celebrations at the University of Texas at Dallas. A group of Hindu students from India had got together and staged the festival in a simple but very devout fashion. I particularly liked the initiative of few students who had compiled a collection of songs in Marathi, Sanskrit and Hindu in praise of Lord Ganesha. Hymns in praise of Ganesha rent the air around the apartments and it was great to be part of this celebrations. This is a small saving grace for my life in the US.
Of course it is not necessary to mention that during these occasions the pain of separation from India, parents and family and the community with which I would celebrate the occasion, gets heightened. I guess it will continue to be there as long as I am here.

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