Algis Kemezys

Algis Kemezys
Location
Ste Adele, Qu├ębec, Canada
Birthday
June 28
Title
Co-Director
Company
BAK
Bio
Internationally exhibited Photographer/Documentary filmmaker, Sculptor, Dowser, Scrabble enthusiast, Geomancer, Iatromant, gourmet chef

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 7, 2010 11:26PM

Photographs of Sacred Sadhu's @ Maha Kumbh Mela 2010

Rate: 50 Flag


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  Kumbh Mela is the worlds oldest and largest religious festival. It takes place in India every three years at four different locations in rotation.

I am writing from the 2010 Maha Kumbh Mela in Haridwar India. I have returned after  12 years  when the last Kumbh Mela took place here. Officially the Festival does not start until January 14, 2010 but I got here early and the sadhu's are starting to arrive.. There is going to be millions of sadhu's here and I don't mean a million or two but maybe 20,000,000. That would be a fair estimate. Currently, I am looking for old friends when I spent 6 weeks here making friends and having all kinds of religious experiences.

To my dismay some sadhu's have died since I last photographed them and making new relationships is so important when it comes to gaining their trust and having the opportunity to make their portraits. I am not one for stealing shots but would rather be part of this larger family of godheads and proceed as a friend or kindred spirit .

Writing this is very difficult because of power fluctuations and a weak cable link  so this is only achieved after hours of frustration. I will see if the responce for this is any good before I continue further along with this blog.  

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Women Sadhu Portraits can be seen HERE. 

 

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 Below are my two oldest friends from the 1998 Kumbh Mela in Haridwar.

On the left is Jeldar Baba  Giri, who was such a giant of a man, with plenty of followers. He has been in a car accident and now is crippled . But he is still out there holding his daily fire for those in need and helps them with the personal matters  .  I went to see him last night in the cold and rain and found him asleep . On the right is Bandar  Baba or Monkey Baba.  Also such a great friend who had to inform me that two other sadhu's we were very close with died as well. One was the GodBoy , Sri Bupender Giri and the other was Moony  Baba. May they rest in Peace !!!

 

I found Monkey Baba in Allahabad at the Kumbh Mela three years ago amonst 24,000,000 camping sadhu's. Talk about organization and word of mouth. I thought finding anyone i knew from 8 years earlier would be impossible but I did. Not only that, but I also found a photograph of mine published on a big canvas banner for a  Guru Mahant who passed away. Bupender Giri's Master.

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Monkey Baba is glad I made all these extra copies of my photographs to give away. 

 

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Daily : Monkey Baba feeds the monkeys. The second night I went down to see him, which was 3 weeks ago. We were alone at his campfire. it was getting late 9:00...when I heard this curious sound of water being poured. Then there in the flickering fire light I realize this little baby monkey is peeing on  my leg from above me. I am shocked and laughing and wonder what this means karmically ??? 

 

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This image is of Bandra Baba  or Monkey Baba. I met him first here twelve years ago and found him again in Allahabad Kumbh Mela amonst 50,000,000 other Sadhus...talk about organization. I thought it would be impossible. So I found him here again where he lives along side the Ganges River not far from Vishnu Ghat in Haridwar. His friendship and assitance has been invaluable to me. He also had the matter of telling me about my other Sadhu friends having passed away.

FOR IMAGES OF OTHER SADHUS, INCLUDING MANY FROM THE 1998 CELEBRATION PLEASE CHECK OUT MY SADHU-GALLERY AT  PBASE: 

 http://www.pbase.com/alkeme/sadus_from_kumbh_mela_1998

 

 

 

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Comments

Type your comment below:
Is that all you got?
I want more from you.
I want to see all 20 million
Or at least one percent of them.
Maybe I'll recognize someone
From a past life
Or my next one.
Hi Sagemerlin,

Thanks for the comment. it's very hard working on the web here with the power going out every little while. Feed back through power surges erasing ones memory chip. I have just lost 1800 pictures from my card and in quite the sad mood from it. Yoiu can see my portraits from the Kumbh Mela here at pbase.com where I have posted those earlier images. It's not that I am trying to grab images but I am becoming friendly first and then taking the images. In most cases I return with printed copies and hand them out. In a lot of cases I give them some money to help out and all. One thing that is quite fantastic is that I have found Sadhu's i knew from 12 years ago and found them in Allehabad amonst 30,000,000 sadhu's. There was also a published banner from a photograph of mine of Bupender Giri"s Guru who passed away.
I am deeply saddened by your post because I didn't realize this was coming up this year and therefore have failed to keep a resolution I made many years ago to see this event someday. I do not think I will be alive for the next one and, as a Sufi, I shouldn't even care, but wisdom gained from practice and communicated by posture alone is so much the essence of Sufism that we are advised to sit with such people wherever we can. I can commiserate with you over the loss of the photographs and considering the effort you're going to, have you considered a very small, package generator? Honda makes one that is quite portable and virtually silent.

I will keep checking your blog and website for more of these.

Ya haqq.
Absolutely stunning work. These images are powerful not only for their vivid colors, but because the subject matter is not manipulated or contrived. The intensity and "knowing" of these spiritual beings leaps from their eyes and reaches through the screen. I could look into them forever. Thank you for sharing this beautiful experience and the people who comprise them.
Stunning photographs.
Oh, do continue to blog if you can. I understand how much work it is for you to do so under present conditions. But, your subject and your writing about it is excellent. Your pictures are amazing!

May you be able to build many new relationships at the 2010 Maha Kumbh Mela.
Thanks for all your comments. I am looking at this from another computer and the images all look a bit too dark. I hope thats not the case out there and I apologize for not having photo editting software to make my images perfect.
Sagemerlin, Thanks again for your words and good wishes.
Cartouche your words a worth a million good wishes to me. Thanks.
Sleletnwnm: Your comments have made my day/ month/ year as well...Thanks VM.
Vonnia, I want to thank you as well with all my heart..

I shall send a prayer boat down the Ganges on the 14th of January with everyones name attached for good blessings and good wishes.
Please do continue with the blog. Perhaps if you waited to post until you had a reliable source of power then the posting would go much easier. For me, timely posts are less important -- I can wait. Most important is that you are able to continue passing along this precious glimpse into a world that is practically unknown here but badly needed.
Many, many thanks.
The pictures are amazing. Esp the first one - wow! National Geographic worthy. (Thought of offering a story to them?)
Algis, thanks for posting this excellent photo essay! Really moving and distinctive portraits you have here. I hope the power surges, etc. calm down as I wouldn't want you to lose any more photos on your memory chip--that is an unfortunate situation.
Unbelievably great! Thanks so much for the persistence that it took you to do this magnificent post all the way from the Mela.
I love the pinks and oranges.
How does modern India respond to these men? I can see that they could have a traditional life when traveling through the small country villages, but isn't modern India encroaching on them? Are the attitudes changing toward them?
I can't believe this isn't an editor's pick. It should be, considering this is the largest festival in the world. Perhaps in the history of the world. Great shots... I think I may have met one or two of these sadhus at an important mela in Assam several years ago.
Dear Gourmet Goddess,

Thanks for your good words and kind support. Tell the editors what you just told me. I am a rarity and have been working with these sadhus for over 12 years to get to this point where they trust me . Included is your name in my prayer boat Jan 14.
Om Nama Gamga.
Dear Joy Mars,

Thanks for the note. The sadhu's still reign big in the religious society of India. They are both shaman and doctor, healing souls and offering a place to get ones thoughts and direction organized while around their camp fire. They are India's greatest treasure and still today they are a valued resource that makes the connection between lay person and the devine easier. Your own the prayer boat too...
Dear Vonnia,

Thanks for the note. I shall try to continue because of your good faith and nice desire along with others. The frustration is mind boggling and the hurtles many attempting to do this from here. Your name will be included in my parayer boat this January 14th.

Om
Algis
Dear CoachCaptain,

Your words are inspiring. Your on my Prayer boat too.
Om from
India

Algis
These are gaspingly excellent.
Thanks to Sage for sending many of us here.

Your hard work and faulty computer was worth it. I got high from each face. Such amazing eyes. Keep on posting. Find a better computer. I will send this to a few dear friends who've lived in India for many years. Amazing. Amazing Grace!
Stunning photographs. Some of those faces may remain in my memory forever. Wow.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sadhu

http://www.kumbhamela.net/
These photographs are really exquisite!
These portraits are striking in their composition and beauty. So striking that it prompts ignorant me to learn exactly who the Sacred Sadhus are and what this massive festival of Maha Kumbh Mela is all about. I thank you for opening a new door of learning for me, one that when I awoke this morning I had no idea that I would be turning the handle of.
Thank you for sharing this part of the world, and this part of your vision. The photos are wonderful - the spirit shows, even in the images . . . I can only imagine how much more vivid they are in person.
I am not too ashamed to say that I knew nothing of this huge and important event before tonight. I have been reading and came back here to say thanks for sharing this at OS and in the process, making my world bigger and of course brighter.
What intense portraits. You must be the Mary Ellen Mark of the Mela! I will learn more about this now, thanks to Sagemerlin... Please put my name on your prayer boat - I will be sending energy your way from now til the 14th and after. Namaste.
These photographs are stunning, I hope you continue your blog and write more of your experiences, in spite of scanty connections. I'll follow your journey vicariously.
Highly rated
dEAR sAGEmERLIN,

I ALWAYS WANTED TO HAVE A FRIEND WITH A NAME LIKE THIS AND i GUESS I GOT MY WISH. yOUR SUPPORT HAS BEEN SOUL TOUCHING TO ME.
ytb

algis
HELLo There !!!

Due to power failures at this time I have to keep things short and qiuisk .,
so sorry
ak
Dear Stella,

Your named stella because yopur comments make me feel stellar !

Your in the prayer boat !

Om from India and KM
Algis
Dear Wendy,
Your note and participation keep me in good faith and your name shall float down the ganges in a prayer boat this Jan 14th. 2010

Om from haridwar KM

Algis
Dear Sandra S,

Every good thing deserves another and I shall bolster your karma for helping me out with good words and thoughts by including your name in my prayer boat this Jan 14.

Thanks and Om from India
Algis
Dear Ablonde,

I love opening doorways and esp for you ! May your sould travel through the door of cosmic consciouness after I send your name down the Ganges in a Prayerboat this jan 14.

Om from India and Km

Algis
Dear Natalie,

I am glad that this humble post lead you on a road of discovery. Your on the parayer boat for Jan 14.

best regards from India and KM
OM
Algis
Dear DragonLady,

Thanks for the Mary Ellen Mark of excellence. Wait till I upload the next batch....I'll be thinking of you and your great words. Your name will be floating down the Ganga river in a prayerboat this jan 14th.

Om from KM
Algis
Dear Fusuna,

Thanks for being so taken with my work and commenting on it. I really keeps me strong andf able to cope when things just fall apart.
Your name will be on my prayer boast for this Jan 14th.

Om from KM and India
Algis
Dear Owl SW,

Your really out there for making me feel out there ! Your words deserve good favor so your name too will be floarting down the Ganges River this Jan 14th.

Thanks again and Om from India
Algis
I could not pick a favorite photo here if I had to.

These are all wonderful, each in its own way. Thank you for such a herculean effort to chronicle this celebration.

Rated. Wishing you sincere good luck with your internet connection and praying that you do not lose any more photos.
lovely photos. I will be back to see more.
I was wondering how you established the trust with the sadhus to the point they would permit such intimate portraits to be taken, but I read that you have spent 12 years in Hardiwar. My parents lived in an ashram there in the late 1960s. I'm sure they met some of the holy people you have depicted here. Thank you.
Algis: Fight the Power!! Keep 'em coming, brother - this is most excellent work.

Namaste ~
Incredible! It seems that different shades of orange are a recurring theme in the dress. I definitely want to know more of your expedition.
Happy to see this prominently on the cover, much deserving. Beautiful.
glad the internet is at least good enough to upload photos. I look forward to seeing more photos as the festival officially begins and progresses. Would love to see more than individual portraits althought these are fascinating. Maybe landscapes, art and architecture - I'm sure you are snapping all these - don't mean to sound greedy but your photography is great and I have always wanted to go to India from the time I was young - so more photos!and maybe some of you with the people that you know there. Oh yes, food too!! Thanks for sharing.
Wow. I love these photos. I only saw two women. Are there not very many women at the festival?
gloriously beautiful photography...I'm enthralled.
Just magnificent. Could do a book just around these images. Thank you for sharing, especially with all the power problems.
I am captivated. This is something I know nothing about and will keep up. It's the eyes. And the photo quality (darkness question) is fine. Colors are vivid. Thanks.
Beyond awesome!!

Thanks for sharing.

Rated.
Elegant, probing photographs. So wonderful, the internet that I can view these on a farm in PA, USA and catch a glimpse of a life so different yet in these eyes so familiar. Best to you on your journey and thank you for sharing these brilliant portraits. r
Amazing photos! thank you for sharing them, especially under difficult conditions (I can't imagine how you uploaded so many!).
To add a layer to this: "This year the Indian government spent more than 8 million dollars on preliminary organization for the Kumbha Mela. According to national newspaper reports, arrangements provided 5,000 gallons of purified drinking water every minute;8,000 buses which shuttle pilgrims in and out of the festival area that spread over 3,00- acres; 16,000 outlets and 6,000 poles which provided electrical facilities; 6,000 sweepers and sanitation employees who worked around the clock to maintain health standards; 9 pontoon bridges which spanned the Ganges at intervals; 20,000 policemen, firemen, and the Indian National Guard who kept a constant vigil at checkpoints and with closed circuit TV guarded against traffic congestion and other possible outbreaks or disturbances; and 100 doctors and nurses on call at all times at medical assistance stations."
I saw this in the cover of OS and am glad it also got an EP. I live in India and can fully appreciate the pain and hardship you must have been through to get these photos. I also saw your videos on India, loved the midlife crisis one a lot and rated it too. Thank you for this glimpse into this year's Kumbh. Wish you get what your heart desires.
I'm sorry you lost so many photos. Thank you for taking the time to share these with us. They are magnificent.
There is a beautiful piece here (http://www.archaeologyonline.net/artifacts/kumbha-mela.html) describing the event that goes nicely with the pictures here.
The only thing is, in the piece it says, Sun is in Capricorn, when in India they say, Kumbh happens when the Sun enters Aquarius, which is called Kumbh in our language.
http://www.archaeologyonline.net/artifacts/kumbha-mela.html the piece here tht I referred to is written by Jack Hebner and David Osborn n titled: Kumbha Mela, The world's most massive act of faith. I mentioned it here since in thread some people asked what this is about, the article mentions the story about the churning of the Sindhu to get the Nectar of Immortality by the Devas and Asuras and how that is related to this celebration at the confluences of the ganga.
Moved to add to the many already brilliant comment I must say that
this set is not only breathtaking for the beauty of the images, but goes deeper in depicting a way of life, a philosophy, that is as fascinating as it is alien to conventional "western thinking".
This must be FORWARDED to many of your contacts - not for the usual "rewards" (on earth or in heaven) that are promised to you in most such cases, but for your friend's sake. If this does not get picked up by some publisher then there is really no logic or sympathy left in corporate thinking.
To all those who thanked me for directing them to this site, I thank you instead for coming here and supporting Algis' work. This is a sign of what OS can do when used properly to break new ground with original research and writing. Taking photographs is the most basic kind of research. I don't visit Salon often but the editors are missing a bet if they don't put this post up there as well.

In my own exceedingly unhumble way, I wrote my most recent poem, # 91, as a paean to Algis and his work. As someone who has traveled long in different but similar paths, I tried to capture the sense of being in such gatherings from the outside looking in and inside looking out at the same time. I am not sure I accomplished that, but I am an indifferent critic of my own work.

What is important, here, is modeling a more interactive and supportive use of OS, as Art James (and here I will complain about never having received an Art James myself) does with his poetic responses to others' posts.

I wax too long. I have been put on an OS diet by she who must be consulted in all things....and she does check up on me.
The photos are powerful and I'm sure the event equally so. Tell me, are only men Sadhus? Is the event for men only? I don't know the history, clearly, but is there a similar event for women?
I have not posted here for many months, but was moved to do so by these photos. Stunning work; I look forward to seeing more.
Hi Algis!
I can spend hours looking at those pictures. Please keep sending them with their stories. They are amazing.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your work and this wonderful article. This is real journalism. I would love to see a book of all of the images of these amazing sages.
Prayer Boat with participants names : This boat will be sent down the Ganga tomorrow during the solar eclipse for the best possible good wishes and karma.

Om
Algis

I could not pick a favorite photo here if I had to.

These are all wonderful, each in its own way. Thank you for such a herculean effort to chronicle this celebration.

Rated. Wishing you sincere good luck with your internet connection and praying that you do not lose any more photos.
Bill S.

Dear Bill S.

Thanks for all your good words. I shall be posting more soon. Your name is on a Prayer boat tomorrow.

Best regards from Kumbh Mela
Algis

January 11, 2010 10:00 AMlovely photos. I will be back to see more.
- ttfn

Dera ttfn,,

Great more are coming soon. Thanks for the suppoort and your name is on the prayer boat.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 10:41 AMI was wondering how you established the trust with the sadhus to the point they would permit such intimate portraits to be taken, but I read that you have spent 12 years in Hardiwar. My parents lived in an ashram there in the late 1960s. I'm sure they met some of the holy people you have depicted here. Thank you.
Julie Delio

Dear JD,

Thanks for your good words. One of the reasons for my success is hanging out with them and giving a donation. Then going back and giving them the best image. Word spreads fast. Plus i let sadu's take me around. They love seeing the instant image too. Plus smpking with them add another layer of kinship.
I am including you on the prayer boat.

Best Om
Algis

January 11, 2010 11:17 AMAlgis: Fight the Power!! Keep 'em coming, brother - this is most excellent work.

Namaste ~
Lonnie Lazar

Dear LonnieL,
I hear you loud and clear more coming soon from the opening day today. Your included in my prayer boat too.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 12:46 PMThis is the real deal. Excellent.
New Buddha Fun
January 11, 2010 03:52 PMwow.
hyblaean- Julie

Dear Julie,

Thanks for your good comment. Your on my prayer boat tomorrow.
Om from India
Al;gis


January 11, 2010 03:54 PMIncredible! It seems that different shades of orange are a recurring theme in the dress. I definitely want to know more of your expedition.
trig palin
January 11, 2010 03:56 PMHappy to see this prominently on the cover, much deserving. Beautiful.
Kathy Riordan

Dear Kathy R,

This is mt second trip to KM at the same place. I came with images made hear 12 years ago and sadhu's remember and some are stillaround making us old friends.

Om from India/ Plus yoiur on the prayer boat.
Om from KM
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:03 PMglad the internet is at least good enough to upload photos. I look forward to seeing more photos as the festival officially begins and progresses. Would love to see more than individual portraits althought these are fascinating. Maybe landscapes, art and architecture - I'm sure you are snapping all these - don't mean to sound greedy but your photography is great and I have always wanted to go to India from the time I was young - so more photos!and maybe some of you with the people that you know there. Oh yes, food too!! Thanks for sharing.
Leonde Delmare

Dear Leonde D.

Thanks for the tip I will try to keep my vision as open as possible. Unfortunately things are really messy and getting a clean background is tough. Your on the prayer boat.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:14 PMHow stunning....
WalkAwayHappy

Dear WAH,

I shall be walking away from here happy indeed. Your name will be on my prayer boat tomorrow.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:16 PMWow. I love these photos. I only saw two women. Are there not very many women at the festival?
Gwendolyn Glover

Dear Gwendolyn G,

Yes the women are comming and their are a few around. I am focusing on that esp for you. Thanks for the comment.Your on the prayer boat too.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:50 PMgloriously beautiful photography...I'm enthralled.
bbd

Dear bbd,,
Thanks ever so much. Your on the prayer boat.

Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:54 PMJust magnificent. Could do a book just around these images. Thank you for sharing, especially with all the power problems.
Lea Lane

Dear Lea L,

I hope your suggestion comes true. Thanks for commenting. Your on the prayer boat.

Om from KM
Algis

January 11, 2010 04:58 PMI am captivated. This is something I know nothing about and will keep up. It's the eyes. And the photo quality (darkness question) is fine. Colors are vivid. Thanks.
grif -

Dear Grif,

thanks for putting my worries to rest, Thanks for the comment., Your on the prayetr boat too.
Om from India
Algis


January 11, 2010 05:32 PMBeyond awesome!!

Thanks for sharing.

Rated.
Tinkerertink69

Dear Tinkerertink69,

Thanks ever so much for taking the time for making my day. Your on the prayer boat.
Om from India
Algis
.
January 11, 2010 06:39 PMElegant, probing photographs. So wonderful, the internet that I can view these on a farm in PA, USA and catch a glimpse of a life so different yet in these eyes so familiar. Best to you on your journey and thank you for sharing these brilliant portraits. r
rita shibr

Dear Rita s.

Thanks for letting me know I made your day. Your on the prayer boat.
Om from India
Algis

January 11, 2010 09:33 PMAmazing photos! thank you for sharing them, especially under difficult conditions (I can't imagine how you uploaded so many!).
Silkstone

Dear Silkstone,

Patience and more patience got me through it. Thanks for the comment. Your on the prayer boat too.

Om from I(ndia
Algis

January 12, 2010 01:14 AMTo add a layer to this: "This year the Indian government spent more than 8 million dollars on preliminary organization for the Kumbha Mela. According to national newspaper reports, arrangements provided 5,000 gallons of purified drinking water every minute;8,000 buses which shuttle pilgrims in and out of the festival area that spread over 3,00- acres; 16,000 outlets and 6,000 poles which provided electrical facilities; 6,000 sweepers and sanitation employees who worked around the clock to maintain health standards; 9 pontoon bridges which spanned the Ganges at intervals; 20,000 policemen, firemen, and the Indian National Guard who kept a constant vigil at checkpoints and with closed circuit TV guarded against traffic congestion and other possible outbreaks or disturbances; and 100 doctors and nurses on call at all times at medical assistance stations."
I saw this in the cover of OS and am glad it also got an EP. I live in India and can fully appreciate the pain and hardship you must have been through to get these photos. I also saw your videos on India, loved the midlife crisis one a lot and rated it too. Thank you for this glimpse into this year's Kumbh. Wish you get what your heart desires.
Rolling

Dear Rolling ,

Thanks for the info. I hope I get what I am looking for too. Your on the prayer boat. Thanks again
Om from India
Algis

January 12, 2010 03:02 AMI'm sorry you lost so many photos. Thank you for taking the time to share these with us. They are magnificent.
emma peel

Dear Emma P,

yes i am stick heart sick with that loss. Thansk for commenting . Your on the prayer boat too.
Om from KM
Algis


January 12, 2010 03:11 AMThere is a beautiful piece here (http://www.archaeologyonline.net/artifacts/kumbha-mela.html) describing the event that goes nicely with the pictures here.
The only thing is, in the piece it says, Sun is in Capricorn, when in India they say, Kumbh happens when the Sun enters Aquarius, which is called Kumbh in our language.
Rolling

Dear Rolling,

I believe it all started when Jupiter enters saggetarius. Tommor is the solar eclipse too. Your 9on the prayer boat.

Om from India
Thanks again
Algis


January 12, 2010 03:11 AMhttp://www.archaeologyonline.net/artifacts/kumbha-mela.html the piece here tht I referred to is written by Jack Hebner and David Osborn n titled: Kumbha Mela, The world's most massive act of faith. I mentioned it here since in thread some people asked what this is about, the article mentions the story about the churning of the Sindhu to get the Nectar of Immortality by the Devas and Asuras and how that is related to this celebration at the confluences of the ganga.
Rolling

Dear Rolling,
Thanks for this too.

Om
Algis


January 12, 2010 03:17 AMMoved to add to the many already brilliant comment I must say that
this set is not only breathtaking for the beauty of the images, but goes deeper in depicting a way of life, a philosophy, that is as fascinating as it is alien to conventional "western thinking".
This must be FORWARDED to many of your contacts - not for the usual "rewards" (on earth or in heaven) that are promised to you in most such cases, but for your friend's sake. If this does not get picked up by some publisher then there is really no logic or sympathy left in corporate thinking.
amdad44

Dear Amdad44,

Your words and fine prose make me shiver with joy. Thanks for the great words and comment. Your name will be sailing down the Ganga tommow in a prayer boat.

Om from India
Algis

January 12, 2010 08:26 AMTo all those who thanked me for directing them to this site, I thank you instead for coming here and supporting Algis' work. This is a sign of what OS can do when used properly to break new ground with original research and writing. Taking photographs is the most basic kind of research. I don't visit Salon often but the editors are missing a bet if they don't put this post up there as well.

In my own exceedingly unhumble way, I wrote my most recent poem, # 91, as a paean to Algis and his work. As someone who has traveled long in different but similar paths, I tried to capture the sense of being in such gatherings from the outside looking in and inside looking out at the same time. I am not sure I accomplished that, but I am an indifferent critic of my own work.

What is important, here, is modeling a more interactive and supportive use of OS, as Art James (and here I will complain about never having received an Art James myself) does with his poetic responses to others' posts.

I wax too long. I have been put on an OS diet by she who must be consulted in all things....and she does check up on me.
sagemerlin

Dear SageMerlin,

Your words are more than inspiration they are joy and hope peace and understanding. Thanks for the bigger than life support.
Your in capital letters on the prayer boat toimorrow

Om from India
Algis

January 12, 2010 10:52 AMThe photos are powerful and I'm sure the event equally so. Tell me, are only men Sadhus? Is the event for men only? I don't know the history, clearly, but is there a similar event for women?
Janelle Tapscott

Dear Janelle T,

Thanks for the visit and comment. There are a few women sadhu's about and I am getting to know them so I can make some images. Coming soon too. Your on the prayer boat tomorrow.
Om from India
Thanks again
Algis

January 12, 2010 11:00 AMI have not posted here for many months, but was moved to do so by these photos. Stunning work; I look forward to seeing more.
kh3333

Dear kh333,,
Thanks ever so much for the comment and good cheer. Your on my prayer boat tomorrow.
Om from India
Algis

January 12, 2010 11:22 AMHi Algis!
I can spend hours looking at those pictures. Please keep sending them with their stories. They are amazing.
kiraz

Dear Kiraz,

Thanks ever so much for the good words and mental support. Your on the prayer boat too. Om from India
Algis

January 12, 2010 12:02 PMThank you, thank you, thank you for your work and this wonderful article. This is real journalism. I would love to see a book of all of the images of these amazing sages.
Coyote Sal

Dear Coyote Sal,,
Thanks so very much .I am honored by your grand statement. Your on the prayer boat too.
Om from India
Algis
Oh, these are wonderful - and you've added more! Thank you for letting me see these.
Oh, these are wonderful - and you've added more! Thank you for letting me see these.
Dear Consunateandvowels,

Thanks for the comment and support. Yopur on the boat.

Om from India
Algis
I've just viewed your most recent post and am so impressed that I had to come here to the start of the journey. Your work is amazing. It feels as if you capture the souls of whomever and whatever it is your photographing. Thank you for this visual treat. I look forward to more.
Interesting subject matter - India is such a remarkably colorful country. This guy has photographed some of the same sadhus as you: http://www.markthomas.us
Ph1 , Thanks for sharing those. In his 26th picture, in the background is a portrait I made 12 years earlier. I was so surprised to see it. Thanks for sharing.
India is full of traditions and interesting people. However, the distance can be a bad point for this country tourism. oferte cazare costinesti 2011
I do not want to seem cynical but since it was discovered that Sai Baba’s father was a travelling magician I do not put much store in what these self appointed Brahma’s have to say, probably even before that when I met Depak Chopra in the late eighties, Fakir just about says it all for him. That doesn’t change the fact that the Veda's are at the top of my list for must reads, with the Bhagavad Gita being just as important as the Bible. Your photography is stunning.