Thursday, January 3, 2008

Shrine on wheels

















This is a shrine on wheels. These carts are pulled by a horse or a bull, or sometimes by a rickshaw. You can see a man in saffron shirt sitting on the curb. The cart belongs to him. Sorry about the picture quality, the details are not clearly visible. The image near the top of the cart is that of Sai Baba of Shirdi, a saint from the 19th century who was equally revered by the Hindus and the Moslems. His original shrine in Shirdi, Maharashtra is very popular even today. He is not to be confused with Sathya Sai Baba, who is living now and is considered by his followers to be a reincarnation of the former. Sathya Sai Baba's ashram is in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh (same state as Hyderabad). These carts go from lane to lane and collect donations. I am not sure if the donations reach the original shrines. They blare devotional songs pretty loudly, which is very annoying because of the volume.

"The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own, and he has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end." -Rabindranath Tagore

"Oh senseless man, who cannot possibly make a worm, and yet will make Gods by the dozen." -Michel de Montaigne

8 comments:

Neva said...

It's a very colorful picture! Interesting stuff in your part of the world! Hope you are feeling better.

macky said...

Very informative!
We have such shrines on wheel and these are called 'Dashi'(山車) in Japanese and shrines without wheels are Omikoshi(御神輿) in Japanese. We shoulder them on a festival.

By the way, thanks for the comment about rickshaw on my blog. Unfortunately, I have no idea about the bamboo on the back of rickshaws. When I have been in Kolkata and Dhaka for trip, I often ride on rickshaws.

zakscloset said...

that's very interesting. it sounds like there are a lot of services that can be delivered with those rickshaws over in hyderabad, even the ones that i would never think of!

Alpesh said...

Aum Sai Ram

Steve Buser said...

Loved your commentary. And the quotes to go along with the story of the photo.

-- steve buser
New Orleans Daily Photo

Web-OJ said...

Devotional deals on wheels! Heh! Heh!

sam said...

interesting, and as usual your quotes are great!

b.c. said...

a great slice of life piece on these guys who drive shrines around, and I really found the quotes interesting