Global Warming – The Curse of Indian Pagans or Animists or Hindus?

This incident happened in my childhood. During summer vacation we went to a relative’s house. There was a river – not a big one, a stream – near to his house. The uncle allowed us to take bath in the river. I was so excited. I was about to take bath in the river for the first time in life. I ran towards the river along with other kids.

I saw an unknown old man standing on the banks of the river. He should be in his late 60s. He had long beard and was very dark complexioned. As he was chewing betel leaf with lime and arecanut, a reddish coloured liquid was oozing out of his mouth. He might have guessed that I was a new boy in the pack. He looked at me sharply and said: “Son, go piss in the coconut tree root before jumping into the river. If you piss in the river, the goddess would be angry. She would send a special fish to chop off your peeing organ…”

You may call him superstitious. Pagan. Animist. Barbarian.

The ordinary old man in that incident was a follower of a life-style that was founded upon the man’s inseparable bondage with nature. Today I can easily place him higher than any nature lovers, environmentalists, green leaders or self-styled gurus. Our way of life (Sanatan Dharma) was sustained by those simple and illiterate human beings, not by philosophers and thinkers.

He told me to piss on the coconut tree roots, so god would bless me. The content of urine is a good organic fertilizer for the coconut tree. When you get into water, you normally piss. The water in the flowing river was used for drinking. You should not contaminate drinking river. So our ancestors tried to put scare of god in us. The modern man would tell you that the old man is spreading lies and superstitions.Please continue reading at

Udaylal Pai
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2 Responses

  1. mani says:

    Good article. Thank you sir. I was traveling from US back home after six years, to India; went to Kasi Rameshwaram trichy and Tirupathi primarily for pitri tharpana and sradha rituals for my parents. I did so some 20 years ago, yet wanted to do it again at my old age of 74 – not knowing if I could revisit Ganga again in my life! I did and could see divinity each event around me, at every situation and I liked every moment of my life there, but was unhappy that even Vedic pundits who conducted ceremonies for me at Hanuman Ghat, (charging me enormous price tags of course!) along with the common men, the pilgrims at the Ghats the busy dhobi, milkman with buffaloes etc., all disrespected the holy river. All waded through next to me as I was offering my prayers to Gangaji; of course the humans spat from their mouths all the excess betal juices, pan remnants, briskly washing their bodies with soaps or shampoos -imported ones, perhaps with tallow in them-? Then there was the Mother Therasa social service wing at the shore who kept a vigil with their health clinic of sorts to attend to foreign visitors thronging the shores of Gangaji.

    I did not hesitate to sip the holy Ganga river water despite seeing all around me and the cruelty of men sullying the pure river. My health did not suffer and instead it is even better after the visit.
    I still feel the average Indian respects and adores the Ganges? Why this kind of apathy continues as I wondered at the burning of bodies continued nearby the Harischandra Ghat..


  2. RK Sharma says:

    Great article and next generation as well as present generation should learn from it. My parents planted few trees and protected them for greenery in environment, but now trees were cut off by corrupt contractors without any sense and ironically they wanted bribe to spare trees, when trees are not causing blockage, no road is being constructed, what is the harm in few well maintained trees? People want concrete everywhere.

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