Most of the Indian movies that come under the genre of horror, have something to do with the religious beliefs swirling around the plot. I went on a trip to find out why. I didn’t actually go on a hunt for evil spirits, it was a family trip to the temples of North Eastern Karnataka.
The movies not only depict evil spirits, but furthermore explore miracles too. In one of the temples at Sannati – I found out how strong a belief can be. It can change a lot with just a thought. Many people there believed in the holy spirit of Goddess Chandralamba. I saw visions about how they could’ve used the strong belief to make a movement. If only such belief existed in the betterment of humanity, we could change a lot in our lives.
I saw more than a dozen people, laying on the floor, while others carried the idol of the Goddess above them, in a Palika (which is similar to the Ark of Covenant). There was no age restriction to this devotion, even kids with age less than seven were doing it. Some of the old men and women could hardly walk. The kids, did not seem to be forced into doing the usual things done at an Indian temple. They too, were into it like it was more than just a normal deed.
I think I have made it clear about how strongly people believe in holy spirits. They devote themselves to evil spirits, the same as they do otherwise. After staying a day and night in Sannati, my family headed to the place with the real deal – Ganagapur .
Ganagapur is a village in Kalaburgi district of Karnataka. The population is as low as 10,000. But, the number of visitors to this village is increasing every year. According to the book Sri Guru Charitra, it is a place associated with the God Dattatreya. The book also mentions that the God would bathe at the confluence of Bhima and Amarja rivers.
Many business opportunities are being made use of, near the premises of the temple. Since it is a religious place, I saw many people selling and buying stones, holy-threads, scents and what not.
People visting the temple at Ganagapur believe that by offering prayers, fruits and other commodities to the Lord – they can get rid of the evil spirits in their life. I wanted to know more about this particular concept, this belief. So, I visited the temple and saw pictures of men and women actually suffering from something. That something, is what I am unsure of. I couldn’t find an answer. But, even the website of the temple states that there is a high possibility of the act being a result of a mental illness.
Since it has a lot to do with the topic of mental health, I wanted to know more about it. I made a video of the affected, to show it to my therapist. But, a volunteer at the temple made me delete it. It was probably because the authorities at the temple wouldn’t want any new attention to the happenings at the same place.
The real question, is not if we should believe in Evil Spirits or even the good ones. It is about how people can be strongly misunderstanding the situation of ambiguity. The confusion about it being a serious mental illness, should be considered by the concerned.
In short, it was trip with lot of questions popping up on the beliefs. I am still not sure about what to believe in. But, I am sure that a strong belief like this can make great changes and create a movement.
I have shared below – other photographs from this trip. I will be writing more on the topic of beliefs in the near future. Tell me if it would interest you.
I have decided to share with you – my favourite piece of art, every week, of any form. Consider it to be very good, and I am hoping you’ll like it. This week’s Favourite: It Isn’t True – Sid Sriram. As always, thank you for reading. Keep reading!