The “Me” that descended from the Himalayas was completely different from the “Me” that had ascended about a week earlier.
My ego and beliefs were questioned at every turn of the switchbacks, while climbing up and down the Himalayas. And there are like a million switchbacks in the entire route. So the questioning was a million times over.
I thought I was better off the way I was when I started climbing! But, as time progressed I could sense that a change had been set in motion. It was the “Why” part that I was not able to comprehend! Why was I being put through the change, when life seemed so perfect? The “Why” was so overwhelming for my mind, that my emotions could not cope with it.
On my last day, I stood on the banks of Ganga, with tears swelling in my eyes. And I asked her “Why?”. All I could hear was her roar. I asked her repeatedly. Ganga did not answer.
But Ganga was a witness. She was there all along, in the form of Ganga herself, or Bhagirathi, or Alaknanda, or Mandakini, throughout my journey. And she had witnessed the beginning of my change. So, I promised Ganga, my witness, that I might not find an answer to the “Why” that I had asked her, but the change will continue. And when I return to see her again, I would return a better man.
Me being me, I still do not understand how much better is good enough. So, I am thriving to make myself better, in whatever way possible. Probably, there lies the answer to the “Why”!
In frame: Ganga Arati, Triveni Ghat in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India. This is a tribute to my witness, Ganga, who stayed by my side throughout my journey in the Himalayas.
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© Amrit Panigrahy. All rights reserved.