India by Kris G Hariharan
India, the land more popularly known for its innumerable gods, rituals, languages, traditions and art forms might as well be described as a land of festivals. Indians over many centuries have developed a deep rooted invincible faith in festivals and congregation as a glorious means of celebrating life and love. Most festivals in the country are combinations of religious rituals, ceremonies, worship, processions, congregation, dances and music, colors etc. strongly associated with the ideas of thanksgiving, penance, community bonding and prayer.
I have been documenting socio-cultural festivals and events in India for some time now. It’s been a dream to document the Maha Kumbh Mela, the largest religious human congregation on the planet. The festival is sacred mass pilgrimage of sorts, which brings together millions of Indians to take the sacred dips at Sangam (convergence) – the holy confluence of sacred rivers such as Ganges, Yamuna and Mystical Saraswati. The faith is not limited to Hindu followers; several believers from across the world participate in this epic spiritual experience and indulge in one of the world’s oldest cultures. As part of the photographic journey, I was hoping to document a different paradigm of the story; an interesting perspective portraying pilgrims and Naga Sadhus (the naked saints) and their journey to fathom Indian culture presented itself. Kris tells ShutYourAperture
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