DAY THREE – ‘CHARANPADUKA’ – God’s Footprint
Just before the sun rose I followed the ladies who collect tulsi (sacred basil) up the path to a place called Charanpaduka – God’s Footprint.
Here at the shrine I sat and had herbal tea with the resident Yogi Baba. The Baba, a member of Nath Sampradaya, runs a wonderful hut cave and makes it available for visitors or overnight guests. Surrounded by breath-taking scenery, I imagined bringing some hardcore yogi back for some satsang and meditation (Shive, Peter, Milan, Micah?)
The Baba told me there was another cave much higher up, specifically dedicated to women who want to meditate. I was keen to spend a couple of hours in unspoilt blissful retreat, so I asked him to lead me there.
I watched the Baba as he climbed down over rocks, picking his route carefully back down the mountain. This was the route I would need to take to return safely to base camp.
I found a flat ledge just above the cave entrance and settled in for a long meditation. Just before going into the deep inner space I took a few snaps to show how beautiful and breathtaking the setting was.
In the emptiness of self I found wells of gratitude, of appreciation, of all the emotions.
In such a pristine setting, the feeling of awe saturates the mind, and a sense of elevation is intensified by the presence of the mountain goddess – Nandi Devi.
Sitting there, I felt like a jewel in the mountain goddess’s pendant. My eyes felt like clear waterfalls, my bones like rocky cliffs. My hair was the trees, the high rare air my lungs. This meditation place seemed to be the real reason for this part of the trip. I felt so blessed to have arrived to find peace and blissful silence. My heart itself repaired here.
This was perfection.