Holy Cow! Cellphones in the Temple!

By Mary Kay Seales

What a funny accidental photo. It was taken in the Kapaleeshwarar Temple in Mylapore in south India. Each evening I walked the circular courtyard within the temple to escape the crazy chaos of the city outside. Barefoot on the cool ancient stones, people praying, offering puja to Shiva, relaxing with friends. This was, as church may be for many, a place to reset one’s humanity thermostat.

Cows, as you may know, are sacred in India. But why? 

“As the sheep is to Christianity, the cow is to Hinduism. Lord Krishna was a cowherd, and the bull is depicted as the vehicle of Lord Shiva. Today the cow has almost become a symbol of Hinduism.”

It was amazing to see cows wandering the insanely busy six-lane highway near my home there, the only thing the cars would have to stop for. People, not so much. Make your way across the street if you dare. Cows rule.

The Blessed Bovine in this photo seems to be a taken aback by the young man’s disregard of his holy presence. Or perhaps, he is dismayed by the young man’s use of this modern device that distracts him from his purpose for being in the temple. Stop and pray young man!

Then again, perhaps this Nandi Bull is just curious. 

Of all the soul-altering moments in India, which I either loved or hated with no middle ground, these sunset walks in the Kapaleeshwarar Temple were among those I cherish.

 

Further Reading:

Lonely Planet India (Travel Guide)

 
Expedia.com

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