Skip to content


July 29, 2009

Last week visited Shirdi and a Jain temple in Nashik
1. In Shirdi after waiting for hours in a long queue as soon as we entered the main temple finally saw the divine face of Sai Baba smiling at all of us. Again after waiting for quite long in the crawling queue, finally managed to reach near the serenely seated Baba. But what is this? I was there only for just a second when the Pujari pushed me ‘” go ahead let others come”. I told him that after waiting for hours, at least let me quench my thirst of his darshan. Please allow me to stand for a few more seconds. But No, I was pushed by the Pujari from one side and the impatient crowd from the other side and I was literally thrown out. I just wondered, what was the point in waiting for so long if I was not allowed to even fold my hands or bow down to him or touch his platform. I didn’t drive all the way from Mumbai to Shirdi just to wait and get pushed out. I have heard similar is the case in Tirupati Balaji, Shrinathji or many other such famous temples. Many from the crowd were complaining about this but no one had the courage to raise their voice or do something about it. And like so many others I just meekly walked out and thanked God and my stars that I could alteast touch the very ground where Sai baba had spent his life and which is considered to be God’s abode on earth.

2. On my way back to Mumbai we visited Gajpanta, a Jain pilgrimage. Enduring heavy rains, chilly winds, aching knees but with excitement to be the first one (we were a group of 17 family members) to reach the top I climbed a mountain which had 435 steps (only). I forgot to mention this is a holy place where it is believed millions of saints attained salvation. After reaching the top and doing darshan of centuries old idol of Bhagwan I noticed that many devotees had offered rice, fruits, almonds etc to the God,( this is a commong practice in all jain or Hindu temples where devotees place sweets, fruits, dry fruits etc in front of the idols of the God.)
but sadly this was all being savored by crows, birds and rats..
I am neither an atheist or I have anything against any religion (I am a very God fearing person and turn to him for even small -small problems of mine and have faith that he will save me from all troubles or tensions of life) but I just wondered
why do we offer fruits, sweets or such eatables in the temples, which either become the lunch of birds or goes into the all ready overflowing personal kitchens of the pujaris.
Why can’t we give all these eatables to some needy person or hungry person to satisfy his hunger?
What is the point in placing food items in front of the idols of God? After all it has all been provided by the almighty himself.
Are we not insulting the God by returning the things which he himself has given to us?
Won’t the God be happier with us if we fed his other starving children?
This again brings a thought that, when we say and believe that God is omnipresent, then why do we visit some specific places to be near God
Why can’nt we sit at home , think about him and feel that we are near him, why visit temples or other religious places.
actually this is very confusing as even I visit a temple daily and I feel guilty in the night if by chance I am not able to touch the ground of a God’s home on earth that particular day. Not that only, I even walk to various far off temples either to pray for peace of mind or thank God when ever something good happens in my life. but such thoughts do enter my mind that why am I doing this?
why should I go to a particular temple or such place to offer my prayers, Why can’t I do that sitting at my home only
but then I suppose this is human tendency to be always in a dilemma
because the ways of God are beyond us.
I find no answers to these questions as whenever I raise these issues with others rather I am condemned, crticised and ridiculed for harboring such thoughts which are anti religion.

20 Comments leave one →
  1. Queenmothermamaw permalink
    July 29, 2009 5:04 am

    Thank you for your kind words, sweet girl.

  2. Neha permalink
    July 29, 2009 5:51 am

    well Anjugandhi, the last time I visited a temple was 3 years back (coincidentally, shirdi saibaba temple)…my husband is a devotee…but I do not believe in going to the temple for worshiping god…i believe, god stays in our heart, so why go temple? just have a pure heart and u have worshiped the god…

    about the food being offered, i really appreciate ur views…hopefully this will stop soon…

  3. Anonymous permalink
    July 29, 2009 7:22 am

    I think its the pain and effort we take to go to holy places which makes us more closer to god. And thats the reason ppl walk/climb miles for amarnath yatra, siddhivinayak. In pain ppl feel more closer to god.

    And regarding shirdi darshan, Just imagine if everbody is given double the time then waiting time will increasing prapotionaly.So its better to have 3 seconds darshan with 3 hrs of waiting rather then having 6 seconds with 6 hrs of waiting.

    Nice post… 🙂


  4. Milan Mehta permalink
    July 29, 2009 1:14 pm

    People have differing opinions when it comes to religion. Its a subject which generates a lot of heat as well. A lot of people go to the temples not just to worship the god's but also because for the peace of mind. But it doesn't discount the truth and facts mentioned in your blog. I personally don't think it matters where you worship the god whether its in a temple or in your home or your heart. What matters is whether you have the belief in an unknown power……

  5. faisal permalink
    July 29, 2009 1:26 pm

    Beautiful post.

    Diet meal Plan

    Walk In medical Clinic

    Diet menu

    Pain Management

  6. ramya permalink
    July 29, 2009 2:24 pm

    Its better to give it to the needy. God himself said, When you help the needy, you help me :-). I believe in this very strongly.

    About the Darshan, its the same everywhere. Many people are waiting after you, so should consider them also. If they give an individual time to all, then the queue won't go ahead 🙂

  7. Ashish permalink
    July 29, 2009 2:52 pm

    I firmly believe that God is in one's heart. No matter how hard someone tries to push you into the temple of God, unless one has the feeling from inside, you really cannot be true to either yourself or God when visiting him/her.

    In my personal experience, my parents have stopped forcing me to go to temple, as they know by now that it's worth spending their time and energy in convincing someone who does not believe in it.

    Oddly, I do believe in god in its very purest form. Although I have read many books and heard people bragging against the very existence of the divine force, I still have a belief in myself that keeps a check on me all the time.

    My God is in doing good deeds, helping others even when not needed by the other person. Being true to yourself (I can't say that one can be true to others all the time in this materialistic world) and be pious in your thoughts for others.

    Hopefully, this place will soon gel with your thoughts as well.

  8. Nazish Rahman permalink
    July 29, 2009 8:52 pm

    Well i think u have to understand why the pujari did like this because there are thousands of people behind n everyone should get their chance…i mean the situation is not in his control. Had u been there u would have also done the same thing..n u reached there or the desire to go there made god accept your prayers. He knows all our feelings n yup u r right god is everywhere.

  9. Aparna permalink
    July 30, 2009 3:30 am

    I have also had such bitter experiences.
    Last month I visited shirdi and was pushed, jostled and abused by the volunteers. Just felt like telling them some strong words but restrained myself, respecting the sanctity of the place.
    God is everywhere.We just need to find him within us first.

  10. Parita permalink
    July 30, 2009 5:36 pm

    Very well written Anju, I too had a very bitter experience when visited shirdi temple last yr, and same happens in shrinathji, we visit shrinathji atleast 2 in a yr and always its such a rush over that sometimes i feel like being crushed….

  11. Ms. Neha Gandhi permalink
    July 30, 2009 8:55 pm

    new template..hmm i liked ur previous one better…
    but this one is good too…

    u should post some pictures of ur trip on ur blog…we would all love to see them

  12. Ms. Neha Gandhi permalink
    July 30, 2009 8:56 pm

    one more award…nice nice…

  13. Durga Nandan permalink
    July 31, 2009 5:08 am

    A voice against odds.
    I appreciate the effort. 🙂

  14. July 31, 2009 6:17 pm

    all this magic is created by religious leaders hundreds of years back.
    If we read old vedas god is everywhere ,god is in you ,god is in me ,god is in cow and dog also.
    so what is reason to visit such places.what will happen if there is a advertisement of a product or service for hundereds of years.
    from one generation to next generation.

    this my article you may like it.

  15. Indian Home Maker permalink
    July 31, 2009 7:46 pm

    Absolutely with you on feeding the needy! Infact I always do that for every special occasion or festival.

    This is the second post I have read today on this topic, and I also wrote a post on this…about where does god live…, for me .. God lives in the hearts of those who do what they know is right, no mater how difficult it is.. 🙂

  16. Indian Home Maker permalink
    August 1, 2009 2:05 am

    I thought I left a comment here yesterday evening!! Anyway, I read and loved this post! I have been in this dilemma too, I feel I have so much faith that I do not need any middle man between me and God! I shut my eyes anywhere (or not even shut my eyes) and pray and I have always felt protected …
    I also feel helping/feeding the poor is a more real prayer than feeding the the priests.

  17. Indian Home Maker permalink
    August 1, 2009 2:08 am

    Here's what I wrote on the same dilemma…

  18. Apanatva permalink
    August 2, 2009 1:47 pm

    जब कुछ खो जाता है लोग भगवानजी को भोग लगाने की रिश्वत भी देने से नहीं चूकते
    ब्रत उपवास की जों भी कहानी है अंत मे ये ही होता है कि भगवान ये ब्रत रखने से उनको धन प्राप्ति हुई थी हमारा घर भी सुख सम्पति से भर देना.कर्म करो फल की कामना नहीं ये सब भूल जाते है.
    सच्चाई तो ये है कि फल की प्राप्ति के लिए ही ब्रत रखे जाते है I

  19. Ketan permalink
    August 4, 2009 3:21 pm

    Anju ma'am, Am glad that your mind did reach these thoughts. I used to have similar doubts about God's existence when I was 13-14 years old, but of course, by the time I was 16, I turned atheist.

    Reading your post made remember one incident.

    I'd done my internship following MBBS from Shirdi in 2007-08! And for two months in all, I was posted in the first aid center of the temple complex.

    I'd never entered the temple sanctum on my own. The nursing sister and the ward boy would suggest that I go and take darshan in the temple. And since, I wouldn't want to reveal to them my atheism, I would just go to the temple, and pretend to pray to the Sai. All this I'd do to avoid hurting their sentiments, and of course, for my own safety!

    On one occasion, one of the Guruji's (the temple priest) had made me stand in front of the the Sai's statue for the 10 pm-'arti', and rest all devotees were made to stand behind the gates. Imagine I along with the priest was standing closest to the statue, and I could imagine the envy of most of the devotees standing behind me. And it also made me wonder–to stand like that before that idol must be the life-time dream of crores of people, and I was 'withstanding' it! I just felt for a moment that had I been a believer of Sai, I'd have felt the magic of the moment!

    But then such is life!


  20. ajay permalink
    August 19, 2015 3:16 pm

    I guess you are mixing human created things with God. You are right god is everywhere in you also then you say you fear god then you say you go to temple to pray??
    Also evry one is saying food should be offered to needy. Show me where are the needy people??? Beggar’s are not needy. See Hinduism is very deep knowledge doing pooja offering food in temples has its own importance. But it is duty of temple people to distribute offered things to other devotees. And if you have so much pain for wasted food does your family or you yourself eat what is served in dish completely. Not a single roti gets wasted.??you cannot challenge beliefs of Hinduism. It is more deep knowledge than you have ever imagined

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: