Trips with college friends are always loud music, laughs, pranks and yes, some controversial games, right? Wrong, our college group went all silent within minutes and that too immediately after a nice dip in the forceful waterfall and snacking over crispy pakoras.
We planned our small trip to Lonavala after multiple cancellations and shortlisting the carry along people. The train ride also was happening with people fighting with TC and then of course paying the fine in the end. This all had already set our mood to tell this story by spicing it up by casting us as heroes.
Immediately, after getting off from the train we hit the roads on local bikes to Bhushi dam where a few hundred people were sitting on the steps of the dam getting soaked by flowing water. There were tourists all around it almost felt as if instead of steps they were sitting on each other’s laps. Despite the crowd, people were enjoying the water and we slowly joined them.
It was the peak rainy season and there were dark clouds all over the Bhushi dam. For no good reason the crowd thought shouting at each thunder would be fun. I don’t know if the roar from thunder was louder or shout from insane tourists. All in all, everyone was pumped up to celebrate even the smallest of happening thing around.
With our throats sore all we needed was deep fried oily Pakoras to make the throat even sorer. After all the shouting we thought tiger hill would be the perfect place to calm ourselves. The small roads were packed with people and we had to shout at a couple of them to make our way. Somehow, we reached the tiger hill to find out it was flooded with tourists and peace was far off the list now.
Determined to find some isolated place we walked long way to the opposite end of Tiger hill to find a nice cliff to sit upon. Finally, after walking for about half a kilometer we found a nice aloof spot over the lush green valley. Couples in our group settled down separately and rest everyone chose their own spaces. With the swift wind coming from the valley probably everyone closed their eyes to memorize the entire scene.
A while went passed, I slowly opened my eyes to find the entire green valley turn white and grey with the clouds. Everyone was now peeking down to see this beauty, everyone was amazed still no one spoke a single word. The clouds slowly started coming up. And within minutes everything went blurry. There were clouds everywhere and all round us. It felt as if we were in heaven. Up above the clouds and away from all the chaos.
May be the gods are also as chaotic as we are but they being above the clouds makes all the difference. Being above the clouds they are in peace and calm, much away from the worldly thoughts of wealth, health, partners, life etc… They just enjoy the clouds moving. Even I felt sitting in the council of calm gods which were now around me.
I suddenly got the real meaning of Kabir’s Doha,
ज्यों नैनों में पुतली, त्यों मालिक घट माहिं |
मूरख लोग न जानहिं, बाहिर ढूढ़न जाहिं ||
(Trans: Like the pupil is inside the eye similarly God is within ourselves, but the ignorant people search for God everywhere outside.)
All my friends felt like gods to me and I knew there also was a god inside me and it had given me a completely different vision to look at myself. Maybe it was the clouds, maybe it was the company, maybe it was the situation but whatever it was it had given me my god. The Tiger hill in Lonavala gave me one guarantee that anyone can find a god within themselves all they have to do is walk away from chaotic world and experience nature’s miracle.
“Nature is the purest portal to inner peace .”-Angie Weland Crosby.
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