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Posts Tagged ‘Hampi’

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I’m sitting in the arms of an ancient bull statue, in the shade of a rough-cut pillar that seems naked compared to the ornate columns of the other temples.  In front of me, just behind wide-branched, leafy trees is the towering Virupaksha Temple. The black box sky scrapers of Manhattan are children’s toys compared to this cream colored temple of enrobed maidens and sculptured detail.

In my life I’ve never seen boulders as big as the ones that surround this bull and its modest stone housing.  The bull used to be a rock like that- huge, imposing, erratic in its shape.  But somehow, without the help of oil-powered machines or monsterous consturction equiptment, this boulder was changed, no longer an ordinary rock, but now something more.. something sacred.

Probably it was alredy here, and the temple constructed around it.  After all, how could simple men move a boulder three times my height and over five times my width?  But then I glance up at the pyramidal temple towering before me.  Like everything else, it was made before the time of gas and electricity.  When I went inside this morning, I saw that fires had charred the roof and columns so that they looked like smooth onyx .  It still smelt of sulfur.

Today, in the stone arms of the bull, I realized that we are greater than the machines that run our lives.  When oil runs out (which it will in at least the next 50 years)  and the life blood of the industrialized world runs dry, either society will trip to a crumbling halt, crippled without its cars and planes, or by then we’ll have found another way to feed our ever growing hunger for power.  But even if solar panels and wind mills have not spread far enough to catch us in a safety net of dark glass and slowly spinning arms, I know that we’ll be ok.  Maybe we’ll be forced backward to the times of these people who built the temples and lit them with fire.  Maybe we’ll spring forward and generate energy in a way that everyone can have the comforts of an industrialized world without polluting our planet and depending on limited resources.  The thing is, the path humanity takes will be decided now, in this crucial time of growth and development.  Ultimately, the question is whether we’ll fall back or jump ahead.

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