Ashes of the eternal flame of Shiva

Are pressed upon my third eye

To my side

Heads of families’

Heads are shaved


I climb the stairs and stare

These eyes watch bodies burn

My mind melts with eight corpses

While black smoke fills my lungs


Fire and tears

Life and death

A circle cycle spinning

With no end nor beginning


Death is life in Varanasi. There is nothing to hide here. For thousands and thousands of years, the fire at the Manikarnika Ghat has never stopped burning – an ancient ritual ongoing. Families carry families through winding blue alleyways. Corpses covered in silk and orange flowers. Singing. Shouting. Burning.

Nothing is permanent. Everything ends. Or rather changes into something new. If I have learned anything from this, it is to live. Live with truth. Live with your heart. Live with love. Karma Consciousness Reincarnation.

Sleep is a short death, and death is a long sleep.

Today I returned and saw a cow standing on a scorching pile of embers.

This… is India.


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