To walk along the banks of the Tissa Weva, Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka before dawn breaks, is to walk with thousands of ghosts from the past . The soft breeze gently wafts around you wrapping you in tales of the past.
It’s hard not to let your mind wander imagining the glorious city as it once stood in its splendor. The gentle voice of the priest offering morning prayers at the sacred Bo-Tree ( Sri Maha Bodhiya) must have happened over a million times but yet is no different today.
As one ages does one turn more to the protection of a religion?
Back in Tagore country, I think of this piece of his writing as my mind wanders with my pics of Anuradhapura.
“I feel I want to quit this constant ageing of mind and body, with incessant argument and nicety concerning ancient decaying things, and to feel the joy of a free and vigorous life; to have,–be they good or bad,–broad, unhesitating, unfettered ideas and aspirations, free from everlasting friction between custom and sense, sense and desire, desire and action.
If only I could set utterly and boundlessly free this hampered life of mine, I would storm the four quarters and raise wave upon wave of tumult all round; I would career away madly, like a wild horse, for very joy of my own speed! But I am a Bengali, not a Bedouin! I go on sitting in my corner, and mope and worry and argue. I turn my mind now this way up, now the other–as a fish is fried–and the boiling oil blisters first this side, then that.
Let it pass. Since I cannot be thoroughly wild, it is but proper that I should make an endeavour to be thoroughly civil. Why foment a quarrel between the two?“
Rabindranath Tagore, 31st Jaistha (June) 1892.