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Top 10 reasons why Varanasi feels like a strange place

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Varanasi  is a city of subtle truths. Whether you can immerse yourself in Varanasi, depends a lot on how much you can go beyond the obvious, beyond the five senses. On the surface, there is often a lot of noise, confusion, dirt and customs that may seem unfathomable. But close your eyes, become still and listen, and suddenly you are in a different place altogether, a place that is beyond time and space. A place that is eternal and suffused with a deep silence, beyond all the noise. Varanasi is a place that nourishes your soul.

Varanasi(Or Banaras) is called a city of lord Shiva. Well if Shiva is different than other Gods, his city is also not far behind. Many people who visit Banaras find it a strange place. We have found out the top reasons which maybe responsible for this perception:

‘Banaras being the city of death, you can be sure that, now that you have arrived here, something about you will die as well. It may be a preconception or a long and fondly-held misperception, or it might even be your physical body, as each of us is closer to death than we might think.’

— Dr Robert Svoboda

1.Burning ghats and people chilling out around :

Banaras has many famous creation ghats and people come from far away places to perform the final rituals for their relatives. However strange it may feel you will still find a lot of people who are there just to watch this phenomenon and just sit their to find strange peace of watching the final journey of the soul.

varanasi-burningghat2

2. Roaming Bulls even in shops:

You can find Bulls roaming everywhere in Banaras. But the bulls are considered as very holy as they are Lord Shiva’s vehicle. What’s more strange that there is bull who goes and sits in a cloth shop where lord Shiva’s staute. Read more about this story .

bull-in-cloth-store

3. Fake and really enlightened sadhus found side by side:

Yes Kashi is known as city of light and enlightenment , but still you will find many fake sadhus and pandas posing as enlightened masters roaming on ghats and other places to gullible disciples.

4. Cultural city yet abuses in everyday common conversation:

They claim that Varanasi is a city of  culture and yet the most common abuse are bh*s**ke. There is famous dialogue about this in movie ‘Assi‘ ” Har har Mahadev ke ssath bh*s**ke ka nara to Kashi ka sarvajanik abhivadan hai Bhaiya”

mohalla1
5. Festivals like ‘Mahamoorkh Kavi Sammelan’:

This one is classic . They have a full yearly event dedicated to Kavi Sammelan of Fools: Mahamoorkh Kavi Sammelan. This happens every year around Holi. Famous poets from around the region participate and make fun of authorities and dignitaries openly from the platform. They even call names and make full use of the freedom allowed to flay politicians , authorities and leaders through witty poems. The Lady poets are crowned as Groom and their male counterparts are crowned a Brides.

6. Everyone seems chilled out, no one is in hurry:

This is the basic characteristic of Banaras. Everyone from a low earning riksha puller to wealthy seths seems to be perfectly chilled out about life. They doesn’t believe in hurry and taking tension

7. Some People actually come here to die:

Really, The city Banaras is one amongst the seven cities capable of giving Moksha/Salavation. If someone dies here , they are supposed to attain Moksha. The gateway to salvation, if you’ve been looking for it, is in India’s northern Uttar Pradesh state, in the holy city of Varanasi. Dying here, according to Hindu belief, is supposed to ‘break the cycle of death and rebirth. Once one dies in Varanasi, he or she is never reborn, and thus attains salvation..

Not only this there are certain cremation ghats where even the cremation of dead person is supposed to give Moksha. These Ghats are Manikarnika & Harishchandra Ghat.

Mumukhsu bhawan: This is called the Hotel of Death. Mumukshu Bhawan (Home of the Ailing), which was established in 1920. This is where the elderly come to settle, and ultimately die.

‘More than 300 people stay in Mumukshu and most of them are above 60’, says the manager, Manish Pandey. ‘In Varanasi death is not mourned but considered a blessing’.

8. City of learned but even Shankaracharya was challenged here:

Varanasi is city of learned but eve the Shankaracharya was challenged here. More recently Karpatri ji maharaj could not perform yagna here and Tantra Shiromani  Narayan Dutt Shrimali faced huge opposition performing yagna here.

Seems even learned have to struggle to find their way at times here.Though Kashi is knowns as the city of Siddhas.

9.North flowing Ganges:

Usually most rivers emanating from Hiamalayas flow west to East in bay of Bengal while gradully pushing southward. Varanasi is one place where Ganges breaks this trend and actually flows in northwards direction. Because of this unique phenomenon this part of Ganges is called  ‘Uttarvahini Ganga’.

10. Foreigners seek to live here permanently:

This phenomenon has taken place in more recent times. There is trend of foreigners who come to stay in Varanasi to learn Sanskrit, Vedic philosophy or pursue various artistic interests. Some even prefer to live here because of low cost of living and general friendly atmosphere towards foreigners,.

If you walk on foot across city , you will find foreigners every five minutes on street.

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