Stories

About the Photographs on this Website

These are the stories behind the photos in the Photograph section of this website.

 

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I had been told there was a very large bolder in southern India that represented a drop of the sperm of Shiva and was a holy pilgrimage site….but no one I asked seemed to know where it was…I had hired a driver to take me to the major temples in southern India, and over a two week period we visited many of them. One afternoon, out of the window of the car returning from one of our visits, I saw this boulder and asked him to stop, indeed it was the one I had heard about, and if I had hired the children and the goat I couldn’t have choreographed a more beautiful posturing of their bodies under the Stone…

 

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We hired a rickshaw to take us to the boys school and partake of their celebration, they were going to be enacting a war scene from the Mahabharata, but by the time we got there the performance had just ended. Disappointed, but determined not to leave without photographing, I asked the boys if they would stand next to the curtain so that I could photograph them…they still had a wild energy about them, remnants from their performance, their bodies had been covered with white chalk making them look more British then Indians, their eyes were outlined with Kajal…the photograph, ultimately reminded me of the boys in Lord of the Flies…have you ever read the book, it is terrifying…

 

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The Mahouts of India not only train and care for the elephants they literally live with them, spending at least 18 hours a day together, and often sleeping with them. They allowed me to go to the areas where they were fed and bathed and where they just hang out with them…one afternoon, I was privy to this moment when I saw this young Mahout with his elephant literally kissing him.

 

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Rajastan is famous for its palaces, many having been totally decorated with small mosaics made of mirrors…especially I was told in the bedroom areas…

 

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In the early morning, with the Ganges as the backdrop, the scene of someone meditating seems timeless…Varanasi, is the oldest continually inhabited city in the world and for all of its long history, spiritual practices are the central reason for its existence…

 

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This image created itself one evening when I was walking by the edge of the Ganges, the moon was rising, reflecting on the water, someone had left eggs and wicks no doubt from a ceremony, and a cow had just given birth, briefly walked away from her sleeping calf. For me it was a merging of christian and hindu imagery…many scholars think Jesus studied in Varanasi during his “lost years”.

 

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After The Buddha became Enlightened in Bodhgaya, he spent many weeks there delighting in his new Awareness…then it is said he went by foot to Sarnath, which is right outside of Varanasi, and then into a wooded area …there some Holi men saw him and thought they had recognized him from the years he had done extreme practices with them. They said, what has happened to you? …and he said sit down, and let me tell you…they became his first …The Indian Government has preserved these woods for 2,500 years (It is known as the deer forest, the picot forest, or The Buddha’s Woods.

 

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This beautiful girl with her pet goat and bright blue bracelets was in a little mud village in southern India. She must love her goat very much because she has decorated its forehead with white ash, a tiki, which symbolizes a blessing.

 

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The children at the ashram had been playing Holi all morning, they had been throwing bright colors of dye on each other for hours. It’s a fun-loving and playful day and children particularly love it…Yet whole families will Play// Laughing with great joy each time they hit someone with the colors…Following hours of this “Play”, the custom is to clean up and put on new clothes for parties in the afternoon…this young woman because of the color of blue all over her seemed to be a reincarnation of Krishna, who often appeared to his devotees with blue skin…

 

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During the full moon of Brahmin, the nomads bring their camels in from the desert to an area around Pushkar to celebrate together.

 

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Walking by the edge of the Ganges one evening, I saw the remains of a ceremony that someone had done for Ma Ganga.

 

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Here some young boys in training to become Monks had come with older Monks for the Kumbh Mela in Prayag. These young boys are given to the Monks by their families to be schooled and trained into the spiritual life…

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