When nothing in life makes sense, when you feel lost in the polluted urban jungle which you call home, then you have to go back to your roots, the wilderness from where your species evolved. That place, those mountains from where you truly belong.
After another difficult year , I decided to go for another Himalayan trek in the last week of October 2021 and my destination was Kuari Pass which lies at 3876m height (from sea level) in the Garhwal region of Himalayas ,Uttarakhand.
It was an autumn season in the Garhwal Himalayas and the entire trail was coloured in green , brown and golden colours. You can only see snow above 4100 meters at various mountain peaks that surround you through out the trek.
Some of the peaks that takes your breath away during this trek are Mt. Dronagiri (7066m), Mt Kamet (7756m ), Mt Nanda Devi (7816m) and the nearest to Kuari pass, Mt Pangarchulla (4575m). You feel their presence like a shadow through out the trek.
The trek starts from Dhak Village in Joshimath (about 513km from New Delhi) and from there the entire trail is a steep ascend. The trail takes you through beautiful Deodar and oak forest called as Tali . From your camp in tali forest , you ascend above tree line, walk through golden bushes and various ridges to reach Kuari pass summit. And from there you return back to your camp in Tali forest.
From Tali forest camp you then trek to magnificent Tali Lake and descend to Auli via Gorsan Bugyal, a breath taking green meadow. From Auli you finally return back to Joshimath via ropeway which in itself a breath-taking experience. The entire duration of the trek is 4 days.
The entire trail is covered in snow from December to march and since this trek was firstly explored by Lord Curzon during British rule, it is also known as Lord Curzon Trail.
The Glistening forests , the shining bushes, walking among clouds and the stunning view of the lake were the hallmarks of the entire trek. Camping in the middle of a Himalayan forest and the stunning milky way galaxy watching you from above during chilly nights , is an experience that you will never forget.
These wilderness pushes you towards your roots, which is free from all tainted thoughts you have spoilt yourself with. And when you finally get to know what wrong you have done it is often too late.
So travel, trek to these places and see yourself correcting yourself with each heavy breath you take during the ascend.
Suppressed by your own fears, Shaken by the jolts of failures, You’ve carried this load Far too long . How long can you live like this? Injuring your soul with frustration, Melting your life with every second ! It’s tough to rise from this muddle, Try to Squeeze your grit one more time, Hold this ground and Push for the sky above ! Breathe your life With every step, Breaking all shackles of your mind. Find your joy on the path above, Breathing happiness of a free sky !
Suffering seeps in When past is allowed to dwell so much in the mind that one hopes only for the future, without living in the present.
And without living in the ‘Now ‘ mind is always dominated by illusions which either don’t exist or may not happen in the future.
Happiness is sense of self totally engrossed in something in the Now. When we think that we are what the past has made us , we lose our true identity . We continue to live that past again and again until it ruins us completely.
We can only recover from all sufferings by denying our mind the sense of time or psychological time .
When we feel our presence in the ‘Now’ and nothing beyond it , we truly feel the warmth of happiness cuddling us with all the beautiful creation around us
Not very long ago I wrote about the nightmare of 2020 which shattered many hearts all over the world and how that grief came to an end.
2021 looked bright and very little did we know it was just a beginning of a cataclysm we would soon find ourselves in the middle of.
It came back and this time it began from our home, people gasped for breath , some because of the disease and some watching their loved ones dying helplessly in front of them.
There was a chaos in the city, hospitals failed to Fulfill their purpose, bodies piled up on the shores of the river and resources ran dry even for the last rites.
Media tried their best to show that everything was in order, government was busy in elections and many people who were thrown to conduct such elections breathed their last afterwards.
Who will talk about those people who died alone, in isolation, away from the loved ones, with only shattered dreams in their eyes?
There were only letters they read only once a day in their wards-
Papa don’t worry about anything , we are fine at home. Mother is already planning of things we all will do on your birthday next month. Papa we miss you every day and we know you will comeback stronger . Have faith in your God. Get well soon !
They read those letters just to live that possibility infinite times until their mind became so numb and their body became so weak that whatever happened afterwards seemed real only to their soul.
How difficult it is for their families to recover from that grief? How difficult it is to get back to normal life? How difficult is comeback?
It’s tough to come out of this deluge of grief but you have to try with whatever you have and whatever you can to pick your pieces one by one and hold it together.
You have to remember the dreams of those who you have lost , have faith in those dreams no matter how difficult it may seem and carry on.
Life has one thing in common, it never stops ,it always finds a way no matter how many times it perishes.
Water dries, becomes vapor , precipitates over mountains , flows like a river and becomes a mighty ocean in the end.
There is an initial push, then there is a long day of hard work and finally there is a long , stretching night of struggle and perseverance. The three phases of an aspiring life .
Some don’t see that long persevering night as they get success early but the real adventure lies beyond the day ,into that good night.
It might seem tough or frustrating to persevere but the moment you focus completely on your efforts in the present you start enjoying the journey, rather than the goal.
You walk, you stumble You struggle, you fall ! You sweat, you cry, You smile creating ripples, In an ocean full of insignificance. You might not reach your shore, But your shore lies Where your will rest And becomes sparkling sand !