RELIGIOUS SITES, Goa
Our two night tour to Karnataka was led by an excellent guide, who had given up a promising career in the law (despite his parents’ opposition) to follow his dream of guiding tourists to appreciate the country he loved. Such was his enthusiasm that on the evening of our first night in Udupi, where our hotel was situated, he offered an unscheduled extra visit. He proposed to escort those of us who were interested to the nearby Sri Krishna Temple to witness the devotions to Lord Krishna. About six of us accepted and made our way to the temple in the centre of a bustling square, surrounded by stalls selling religious statues, ghee lamps for burning in the temple and other related objects. I have no photos of our visit as naturally the worshippers would not want tourists snapping away, but it made a wonderful impression on me and I can describe it for you in some detail.
We left our shoes near the entrance and entered the main hall, which devotees were slowly circling. Many of the small ghee lamps we had seen for sale outside were burning on the wooden balustrade separating these worshippers from the centre of the hall, and I confess the Western obsession with “health and safety” made me question the wisdom of this for a moment before I became caught up in the magic of the experience.
From here we went to see the most sacred shrine in the temple, known as KanakanaKindi, which draws pilgrims to Udapi from all over the Hindi world. An ornate statue of the god can just be glimpsed behind the narrow windows. The origins of this holy place go back to the 16th century. Kanakadasa, an ardent believer, came to Udupi to worship Lord Krishna. He was not allowed inside the temple because he was from a lower caste. The story goes that Krishna, pleased by his devotion, created a small hole in the back wall of the temple and turned to face the hole so that Kanakadasa could see him. This hole came to be known as KanakanaKindi. In other Hindu temples the deity always faces the entrance – only here does he face the back of the temple.
Finally we were taken to see the huge halls where every day hundreds of believers are fed. We saw the kitchen where the huge pots of vegetable curries are prepared for them, and the courtyard where the temple’s monks take the air. All too soon though it was time to return to the hotel and to our own dinner, but with some special memories to take away with us.
I was stumbling around Old Goa one day with my camera. I walked down some old roads past an old, ill kempt Viceroy Arch and roads threatening to be overgrown when I came to this church, all alone by the river. There was no-one there. I was all alone to enjoy the white washed Interior, the marvellous Statues of the Apostles, the beautiful dome, and the fantastic 15th Century Portuguese Italian Style paintings adorning the walls. What a find.
OK some guff: St. Cajetan is built of laterite blocks, which were lime plastered. The façade, havs two towers on either side to serve as belfry, and has Corinthian columns and four niches in which are kept the statues of the apostles.
The main body of the church is Greek cross with a nave ending in an apse and aisles marked by four massive piers faced by Corinthian pilasters. The ribbed vaults of the nave and aisles are of varying height and are coffered with different floral designs. The two-ocatgonal rooms on either side of the main altar serves as the sacristy. There are six altars. The main one is dedicated to our lady of divine providence. These altars are profusely carved and gilded in Baroque style. The altars also have paintings on canvas of the Italian school, some depicting scenes from the life of St. Cajetan. The niches running along the sides of the vault have wooden statues of saints.
The church was built by Italian friars of the Order of Theatines who were sent by the Pope Urban III to preach Christianity in the kingdom of Golconda. As they were not permitted to work there they settled down in Goa in 1640. They obtained the site in 1655 by a Royal order and the church was built in the 17th century.
This church is located just off the road that goes from Calangute to Panaji and is located just a few kilometres inland from the beach. It was built in 1873 and its main shrine of the Nossa Senhora Mai de deus was brought over from the ruins of the convent of Mae de Deus at Old Goa. I couldn't enter inside as it was locked but luckily it had a metal grill gate which allowed me to take a few photos of the inside.
Alright .. if you don't already know you will once you get to India.
Kingfisher beer is to India what scotch is to the Scots.
So If you happen to be driving or riding from Bombay to Goa or vice versa you will pass the Kingfisher Factory.
Drop by to sample some fresh brew's and meet some of the doctors who help conjure up this great Indian Potion.
It doesnt pay to abe a matador in goa. Here, bullfights are between two bulls, no matador needed. The fighting season starts around early October and lasts till May. The most popular locations are in one of the villages around Panjim like Taleigao (the most famous fights are held here), Santa Cruz or Caranzalem. They are also held near and around Margao in south Goa at the villages of Velsao and Benaulim. The fights usually begin around 4 pm, after siesta to the sound of taped Konkani music.
Nerul is located about 2km inland from Fort Aguada and features this nice church. It was built in 1569 and is made from large reddy/brown bricks on the sides but has a gleaming white-washed facade. There's a small cemetery nearby with many of the deceased having Portuguese names.
There are many beautiful churches through out Goa. Many churches are of Medival times and testament of Purtagese architechture.Some churches are huge and some are small in size. Weather you come from Madgaon railway station to Panjim or coming from Karmali to Panjim or going to Sea beaches from city these old churches attract your attention and looks very beautiful.
I recently went on a pilgrimage to Meherabad and loved it. It is home to the Samadhi or Tomb-Shrine of Avatar Meher Baba, who claimed he was God in human form. Engraved on Baba's gravestone is the beginning of his Universal Message: "I have come not to teach but to awaken." Over 20,000 people visit Meherabad on the anniversary of Baba's death (called Amartithi) on 31st January, and thousands more visit it throughout the year, including people from Iran, Russia, China, Yemen, Mongolia, Argentina, American, Australia, Kenya, and Europe. It has a beautiful atmosphere for pilgrimage, with very peaceful energy, and Baba said his Samadhi has "immense spiritual importance" and that Meherabad "is the best for people on the spiritual path." It is located near Ahmednagar, about 5 hours east of Mumbai and 2 1/2 hours northeast of Pune and can be reached easily by train or bus.
Goa is famous for its lovely beaches .
But It has several churches and along with it there are several Hindu Temples ...
Which adds grace to the secularism in Goa..