Dr P V Sesha Sai
1-9-52/F/3 MCH No 2859
Road No 19, Ramnagar, HYDERABAD 500020
Phones 040 7661613 55581368 Cell: 9440422613
E mail firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com,
3RD June 2004
My dear friends
You have been informed about our program to the great Himalayas from 21st of May. In fact I have given the contact cell number etc in my letter dated 18th May but incidentally it is of no use in the extreme heights of the GREAT HIMALAYAN MOUNTAINS. The long gap is really undesirable and we remained helpless till we reach plains.
The first step to the Himalayan ranges is HARDWAR. The spelling indicates two important meanings – one being Haridwar – the gateway to the Holy valley of Lord Vishnu; the second being Hardwar – the gateway to the Holy valley of Lord Shiva. By and large, the place is the gateway to the valley of Lords. River Ganga touches plains at this place and in the ancient days King Bhagirath said to have offered prayers to Lord Shiva to bring Ganga and thus the great river reached plains at this place. The beauty of the river can not be simply described on this small piece of note. Initially any one – ladies or gents; aged or children; ailing or healthy when once they see the Holy river at the place, they just feel like taking a bath in the river and it is a common matter, when once a person touches the river for taking bath, he coolly forgets the moments of time. The experience remains to be quite rich in the memory of any one.
There are hundreds of Dharmasaalas in the place quite well managed and some of them have A/C rooms too. Gosaalaas are maintained a few dharmasaalas and annadaana is a pleasant activity in this area. Any one can see monks, sadhus, saints, and rishis in the area and it is an EMPIRE OF SPIRITUALITY. Any one can experience some thing beyond religion.
On one side of the Ganga we can see Goddess Manasa Devi on one hilltop and on the other bank again on a hilltop we can see Goddess Chandi Devi. The ropeway to both the temples is quite nice. Around 600 mts rope way to Manasa Devi and more than 800 Mts. rope way to Chandi Devi gives us an opportunity to pay a visit to both the temples in one day. The rope way to Chandi Devi is said to be the second lengthiest rope way in India while the first one being Auli rope way with more than 4800 Mts. length and at an altitude of more than half a kilometer from ground level and more than 1700 Mts. from sea level.
We normally perform Annadaana – food feeding; and feeding cows with fresh fruits and vegetables on each occasion as and when we pay a visit to the place. We feel like serving the saints fresh cooked food and we enjoy serving ourselves instead of donating to an ashram for such activity.
The next important place in the footsteps of Himalayas is Rishikesh. Friends, God granted us an opportunity of performing a great yagna at Rishikesh way back in 1988 when we constructed a shed for performing yagna there and it still remains to be there. We took more than 100 pundits to the place from Vijayawada and a truckload of material for the activity. It was a ten day long yagna. We really wonder as to how God granted us such opportunity in those days. At this stage we dare not performing such a lengthy program. When we keep our head up, we can just look at the mighty mountain as if questioning us what a human being is in front of it. Where are we really before it? What we see at this place is a simple STONE LIKE OF THE MIGHTY MOUNTAIN. We are yet to climb and see its real shape beyond and beyond…
We are on our way to Kedarnath and Badrinath. Both the places are in different directions each situated at a total distance of 300 kilometers from Hardwar and both places interconnected at a distance of 170 kilometers. Thus 300 plus 300 plus 170 – totally 770 kilometers journey at the edge of Himalayan ranges is a must in case one is interested to visit both the places. The total height one may touch is around 3900 Mts. from sea level and only snow and snow – nothing else. Both the temples are open from May to October only and on Diwali day both the temples gets closed. It is for the reason that both the temples remain under deep snow during the six months time and it is practically impossible for any one to reach the area.
Kedareswar Lord is one of the Jyothirlingaas out of twelve. Holy River Mandakini witnesses the journey to Kedar. It looks as though the river starts witnessing our journey and gives us an impression that it is ready for refreshing us with its cool breeze. The entire journey is on the banks of River Mandakini – a tributary to Holy River Ganga. The journey by road ends just 14 kilometers from Kedarnath, at Gowrikund. Gowrikund is a height of 2700 Mts. above sea level and one has to climb up to 3900 Mts. i.e. 1200 Mts. additionally within 14 kilometers to have Holy darshan of Lord Shiva at Kedar. At the Holy footsteps of Kedar five rivers – MANDAKINI, SARASWATHI, SWARGADWARI, KSHEERGANGA, MADHUGANGA join and accepts the name of MANDAKINI. One has to cross the river to take darshan of Lord. There is good number of Dharmasaalas in the area. Adi Guru HH Jagadguru Shankaraacharya Samadhi is just behind the temple. On the four sides of temple one can see the snow filled mountains. Perhaps to keep us fresh Lord must have arranged a hot water spring at Gowrikund. It looks as though the water is at the boiling point but when once a person enters into the pond, one feel like staying there instead of coming out even for a moment. It is really a thrilling experience at Gowrikund. The 14 kilometers distance is a steep up narrow road and any one can reach the top either by walk or by horse riding. Good number of Horses is available for rent. Though it is not a very comfortable journey at this point, one forgets all the pains in between upon touching the holy Lord. It remains to be a life time experience for any one.
There are four dhaams for the Lords – Rameswaram in the South India, Puri Jagannath in Orissa, Dwaraka in the western India and Badrinath on the northern India. The temple of Lord Badrinath is open only for 6 months in a year. Badrinath is at a height of 3500 Mts. above sea level and this too is surrounded by snow filled mountains. It is a valley and called valley of Lords. Very comfortable arrangements are made for stay by Gharwal mandal. Good food is available. There are so many dharmasaalas with good arrangements. One may have to walk less than a kilometer to take darshan of the Lord at Badri Temple. In the bone biting cold, to keep up afresh Lord has created Tapt Kunds – Hot water springs at different places at his footsteps. The water is at a boiling point and the pond though initially causes some fear, when once a person enters the pond it is quite difficult for him to come back, for, he will be reluctant to come back. It is such a pleasant and nice experience. Normally at Badrinath, one feels like offering Oblations to the departed souls. There is a place called BRAHMA KAPAL nearer to the temple where such offerings are made to keep the souls rest in peace.
There is SESHA NETHRA, BHIM PUL, BHAGAVAN VYAS GUPHA(CAVE), GANESH GUPHA, SARASWATHI STAL, KESAR PRAYAG, VASUDHARA, LAKSHMI VAN, MUCHIKUND GUPHA ALL OF THEM WITHIN A RADIUS OF JUST ONE OR TWO KILOMETERS OR A LITTLE ABOVE. Having gone to such a Holy place, one should really enjoy seeing the places and back to their respective places with an added vigor and courage.
How do you expect a small man like me to conclude the trip in just one page note? It is beyond my capacity and lot many experiences are to be shared with you. I fear for your time. I shall not disappoint any one with half the way of the information.
Yagnaas are performed for the betterment of all of us. Annadaana has also taken place, the prasad is ready and for a few I may not be able to send the same by mail.
Much to share – my heart feels like making you all sit in front of me and starts narrating the experiences step by step so that you too are made a part of the enjoyment.
I am coming back to you with a small briefing on Gupta Kashi, Deva Prayag, and Neelkanth and similar other places which we visited once again and we are with documentary evidences of our meeting the great rishis and sages.
I shall be back again soon…………………HARA HARA MAHADEVA DR P V SESHA SAI
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Himalayan Visit 2004
Dr P V Sesha Sai