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“Taking a Sacred Plunge: One Wave of Humanity at a Time” by Yardley & Kumar Essay (Article)

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Updated: Jan 1st, 2022

Introduction

The article discusses issues about religion as well as its traditions in the Indian community. One example discussed is Haridwar, located in the foothills of the Himalayas. Religious ideas and ceremonies practiced here are unique and considered consecrated (Yardley and Kumar 1). Indian historical and geographical structures have changed over time, causing rifts in their religious beliefs, hence the development of ‘sects’ purporting to serve their interest and eventually rain disorder in Kumbh Mela. The plunge involved in Kumbh Mela is significant because of its historic reverence to the fight between spirits and demons over the drink of life, believed to have sprinkled in four main spiritual locations, Allahabad, Ujjain, Nashik, and Haridwar, which stands as places for spiritual renewal. However, its logistical problems, which among others, include thousands of people and rival groups intending to dip first, will rigorously increase the victims of stampede and disorder. Being the holy men they call themselves, discipline and order are highly expected of them, which they still lack.

Discussion

The author narrates how religious practices took place in Haridwar, India. Countless men who were considered holy matched in a formal style heading to a specific place, Ganges, and a spot, known as, Har Ki Pauri, ordained to be holy, where rituals took place. Many Hindu religious believers supposed that a plunge in this spot on the selected day would permit them to rupture the series of recreation.

Their presentations also mattered, in that, they were to walk bare and be painted with a sacramental powder. They were the most spiritualists during that season of ritual performing. This is quite a sign of their religious practice. It was quite necessary, in fact, a must for a spiritualist to present himself in that order for him to perform the ceremony.

The legend of the ceremony, called Kumbh Mela, embraces justification that demons and spirits fought over a carafe or Kumbh, which held the drink of life. It further explains that, as the spirits raced headed for heaven, drops of the blessed nectar fell away onto four locations on the river. The locations were believed to be Allahabad, Ujjain, Nashik and Haridwar. These places were considered to be ceremonial myths by Indian spiritualists. At present, the Kumbh Mela is apprehended after every three years, revolving amongst the four cities, denoting that each hosts it, every 12 years (Yardley and Kumar 1).

Since Kumbh Mela was considered a consecrated sacrament, whenever catastrophes happen at some phase in the ceremony, demonstration was blocked and an instantaneous action was to take place. If possible, the matching was not to be stopped, instead, a different spot for bath was chosen. Though the Kumbh Mela ceremony was considered holy, it provoked many quarrels within the spiritualist on the matter of who was to dip first. Therefore, there were so many disagreements during the ceremony.

Kumbh Mela festival was not done on any season but only on specific times of the year. Wednesday was the peak of the Hindu spiritual ceremony. It involved the amazing expression of compassion that also symbolized an overwhelming logistical test.

Importance of religious doctrine and practice in the contemporary world

Religious education encourages students to develop their intelligence of individuality and belonging. It helps them to grow independently within their societies, as people in a different culture and global population. It has a significant responsibility in organizing pupils for employment, mature life and long-term knowledge. It facilitates students to extend respect and compassion to others, in particular, those, whose beliefs and ideas are dissimilar from their own. It encourages judgment and permits pupils to fight discrimination (Fisher and Bailey 3-5).

Religious education also gives confidence to pupils to learn from different faiths, beliefs, principles and ethnicity, while discovering their own beliefs and subject of sense. It challenges pupils to replicate, reflect, examine, deduce and assess issues of reality, belief, faith and ethics as well as to converse their reactions (Fisher and Bailey 3-5).

Conclusion

Religious education presents a chance for individual expression and religious maturity. It improves alertness and perception of religious beliefs, as well as the power of religion in persons.

References

Fisher, Mary and Bailey, Lee. “An Anthropology of living religions (2nd Edition).” Prentice Hall. 2007. Web.

Yardley, Jim and Kumar, Hari. “Haridwar journal: Taking a Sacred Plunge, One Wave of Humanity at a Time.” New York Times. 2010. Web.

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IvyPanda. ""Taking a Sacred Plunge: One Wave of Humanity at a Time" by Yardley & Kumar." January 1, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/taking-a-sacred-plunge-one-wave-of-humanity-at-a-time-by-yardley-amp-kumar/.

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IvyPanda. 2022. ""Taking a Sacred Plunge: One Wave of Humanity at a Time" by Yardley & Kumar." January 1, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/taking-a-sacred-plunge-one-wave-of-humanity-at-a-time-by-yardley-amp-kumar/.

References

IvyPanda. (2022) '"Taking a Sacred Plunge: One Wave of Humanity at a Time" by Yardley & Kumar'. 1 January.

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