walk on

Somewhere in Dec-Jan evey year, devotees of Lord Murugan ( a.k.a Karthikeya ) will walk to his abode in Palani and several other places in Tamil Nadu.

Although that sounds like a sleepy airy walk in the park, it isn’t so. It actually translates to several days of walking 30 odd kilometers daily.

It is the annual pilgrimage. Walking with their bare feet carousing the tar of hot roads, on which see some reinforced steel radials with hot speeds, more often than not. They walk. Carrying their belongings and all else that they would require on the journey atop their heads or slung across their shoulders

Unmindful of approaching traffic that could consist of whizzing buses or wheezing bullet carts, they walk. They are easy to spot. Dressed in a radiant yellow or an ensemble of green, roads in rural TN close to the foothills of Palani see them walk on.

I am told that they walk early in the morning. And late in the evening. Together making for almost 30 KM every day. They chant the holy name of Lord Karthikeya. And walk on.

The same happens in Maharashtra chanting the name of Sai Baba.

In Kerela they walk in the name of Lord Aiyappa.

The Amarnath Yatra up in the Himalayas.

And so we walk in the name of every God that we call out to. Mother Mary. Allah. Krishna. Shiva. Buddha. Mahavir. And ofcourse, Karthikeya. All over the country. And around the world too.

We walk many many miles over many many days. In penance. In celebration. In thanks or asking for something dear. I presume all the time that the mind is active while the legs plough on will provide for some reflection and reordering of thoughts. As well.

And so we walk on. For many miles over many days. In a strange quest for discovering love. Compassion. Peace. And well being.

Incase you cant imagine doing this with this level of an intensity, here is a suggestion. The battery of good Lords will agree, we have traversed an almost similar distance when we walk half way down the street and smile at our neighbour, help someone, do our duties with diligence and spread some cheer.

Walk on people. Walk with hope. Walk with joy. Walk with belief that life can and will be better for all of us.

By the way, that’s exactly what the doctor ordered. All doctors. Walk on.

7 thoughts on “walk on

  1. swatantra says:

    Kavi we have the similar tradition in northern part for the maha shivratri they are called kawaris…

  2. nsiyer says:

    Good one. Already millions are walking to Sabari Malai for the Makara Sankaranti when atop the hill, one seeslight called the Makara Jyoti. Its God’s way that every year on 14th Jan,, this divine light appears atop the Kanta Malai.

  3. SG says:

    Beautifully written and very aptly titled, ‘walk on’. If you ask me to express what life tells me in a nutshell, that will be it… to walk on. And isn’t it what we all do, in some form or other? We walk for love, for peace, for happiness. We walk on sometimes to belong, sometimes to satisfy our quest, sometimes to run away, sometimes to remember and sometimes to forget.
    Metaphors aside, even literally speaking, walking is perhaps one of the most therapeutic activities. Wish you a great 2012. Keep walking 🙂

  4. Nice post, Kavi. Faith gives strength to the feet to walk the distance.

    As yes, agree with your suggestion at the end. Walking down the street to help a neighbour is not so different from these walks of pilgrimage!

  5. Nice post, Kavi. Faith gives strength to the feet to walk the distance.

    As yes, agree with your suggestion at the end. Walking down the street to help a neighbour is not so different from these walks of pilgrimage!

  6. Neha says:

    I remember walking so much when I was in Umbergaon. Every evening we used to go to the beach, walk for 5 kms, fresh pollution free air and greenery all around you.

    Mumbai life is slightly different. Here, you spot people walking on monday night going towards siddhi vinayak. there are water and tea stalls, neembu paani stalls, vadapaav stalls – offering them free food and beverages as they walk on.

  7. Hmmm… I used to walk up the Tirupai (Tirumala) mountain, but these days can’t even think of it! Blame our sedentary lifestyle and our lack of need for fitness. I guess we need to walk on, if not for faith, for health.

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