Tag Archives: Velankanni

Do You know what I am going to do tomorrow?

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And not just tomorrow, hopefully many times in the coming years!

As I have shared with You, it has been YEARS (like 40-50 years?!) since I have had a decent holiday, and I am really weary now.

The Shrine of Velankanni, of Our Lady of Health, on the Mid East coast of Tamil Nadu is one dear to me.

[ The front of the main church ]

The Shrine has grown tremendously over the years, and has 5 or 6 impressive churches within its complex.

As it is frequented by people of All faiths, -and in large numbers, – the main Church in particular and the township are a little too noisy, and have a lot of coming-and-going.

That said, it is still not working out that I may spend a few days there.

What I have decided is to go from Kulithalai (1) which is the nearest town for me, to Tiruchirappalli (2), take a train from there to Nagore, which is near Nagappattinam (4), – not even touching Velankanni, by the way, Alas! – and return by the same route, the same day.

A pilgrimage by Train (and Bus)? 🙂

Gives me a Day Off. Which would be Very Welcome. …Shall be remembering You All!

Love and Regards. 🙂

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What is Spirituality?

The Human Being is a Creature, a Spirit Encased in a Body. Spirituality is the WAY one lives his/her life.

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To Understand Spirituality, one has to be Clear on the Idea of Spirit.

God is Uncreated Spirit. Angels and even evil spirits are spirits, but Created ones. We have to understand that God did Not create evil spirits, but some of the Created spirits chose the evil path, and became so.

We Human beings, Having the Spirit, get separated from the rest of the Spirit-world in that We have a Body. It is Important to Realize that We shall Always have one. When We pass from this life, We shall still have a Body, though it will be Different. The Body Jesus appeared-in after His Resurrection, to His disciples, particularly to Thomas, – coming in when the Doors had all been shut – gives us an Inkling as to How our bodies might be in Our After-life.

Jesus appears to Thomas

Am Indebted to www.lds.org for this Excellent graphic of Christ appearing to Thomas. John 20:24-28.

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A Human being is a Composite of Body, Mind and Soul.

The Soul is what I had heard about, and learnt, when I was Young. Not that the word has become Obsolete. And the Soul stands for the Human Beings’ Unique faculty of Knowing and Deciding.

It can be Equally said that We Human beings have these faculties because We possess The Spirit.

Thus, to keep things simple, the Spirit and the Soul become Equated.

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God’s Spirit Constantly bestows Love, Blessings and Guidance to Us/Our spirit/Our self. But We, or We can say Our spirit, have the Freedom even to Decline, Refuse or Downright Rebel against the Guidance of God. That is Free Will. All this is the Catholic-Christian point of view.

How We Human beings Choose to exercise Our Free Will, – How ‘Our spirit’ guides Our Lives, is Spirituality.

We can be Uncaring, Unconcerned, Apathetic and Filled with the ‘self,’ and that would be our spirituality.

Walter Scott had asked: ‘Breathes there the man with so dead,’ about love for one’s Mother Land. But I ask: “How do We Breathe, Eat and Live, when Eyes like these Ask Us Questions?

Beggar Child

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Or We can be just the Opposite; Being Caring, Concerned, Loving and Totally Other-centred.

Paraanta-Sukhaaya as against Svaanta Sukhaaya.

Like this Little Boy below. We see a Dirty couple. He saw Two Old People in need of Water. He would not even have known that there exists a word like Spirituality. But His Spirituality is Advanced, Indeed. As We All might have had. Where did We lose it?

Boy gives his Water

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Many people seem to think that the following of certain Rituals is Spirituality. For example, Going on Pilgrimages, Praying Many Times a day, etc, are taken as great spirituality.

I Always Discourage people from going on pilgrimages to places like Velankanni and all that. First of all, Two kinds of people profit by them: The Bus Owners, and the Hoteliers! My Divine Mother is Not Lost, that I have to go searching for Her. If I cannot find her in my own home town, I cannot find her.

Velankanni Church

The Velankanni Church

Velankanni beach

The Velankanni beach. Known as one of the 10 best in Tamil Nadu!

Fish Stalls of Velankanni

The famous Fish stalls of Velankanni!

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I am also reminded of Meera singing:

“Gokul dhoondhi, Mathura dhoondhi, Bindiravan, Jag Sara,

Kaashipuri, Sakal main dhoondhi, Dhoondhi Haridwara.”

The meaning of this poem attributed to this Princess turned Saadhvi is something like this:

I searched for You in Gokul, (the place where Krishna grew up), Mathura, (the place of his birth, and of which he was a Prince), Bindiravan (a poetic liberty of Vrindavan, the place of Krishna’s Youth), and the Whole World; Including Kaashi and Haridwara, (whereas You were Dwelling in my Heart).

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[Did You know that Red Light Areas develop around places of pilgrimage?!]

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In Hindi, they have a saying: ‘Bagal mein Chhura, Muh mein Ram naam.’ This means, Constantly uttering the name of god, but Carrying a Hidden Knife.’ The picture below says the same thing, of course, though in a different cultural setting.

Hidden knife

Image: dreamstime.com

And I am Sure We All know Plenty of people who are Regular Church goers, Great Contributors to the church, …and Looting People Blind.

The Word Spirituality is connected with God, with Religion, with Right and Goodness. In the cases stated above, Can/Will Anybody say the people I have mentioned above are ‘Spiritual?’

St. Paul had said: “For me, to Live is Christ.” He was Christ-Mad! That was his Spirituality. And that Is High Spirituality indeed.

Thus, Spirituality is Not the keeping of rituals. True Spirituality is a Righteous Way of Life.

Extreme Love for Money – On part of catholic church

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We say that People are Full of APATHY. And the People Prove it by posting pictures of Places, Parties and Beer Bottles, when the world is going to the Cats on a Fast Wheelbarrow. VERY FEW are the Christians who Involve themselves in Social Affairs, using the Social Network. And For Why? Below I give instances of the EXTREME LOVE FOR MONEY that has crept into our bishops and such. When the bishops love the money, Why should the People Not?!

The catholic church is not alone in being in Love with Money. But I, being a catholic, shall limit myself to that.

You Remember the post of the Docomo advert, where some Boys playing Cricket turn up at the Door of a Wife-Beater? Merely by Turning up and Ringing the Bell, They brought about Change. Changes in the Situation, the church and the World, Can be brought about, If only We All Involve Ourselves in that. This post if offered in that Hope.

Do You know that The diocese of Kottar has Many Churches Locked Up and Without Mass? Taking Just One case, The Parish of the Holy Family in Nagarcoil has, as part of its ‘property,’ Two Marriage Halls, and a Fish Market, which are Simply Minting Money. Like in Lakhs. All that money is given to the diocese. Yet, because the parish church has a Nice, and Beautiful Large Area ‘Free’ in the front, The diocese would like to build a Shopping Mall there! And the People, the Laity, Do Not Want This!

Coming to the necessity of graphics, gave a search for the Church in Google. Lo and Behold, None! But they could not play around with Google Maps. Here is the place, with the Large, Free Area Clearly Shown by Satellite. The building at lower left is the Marriage Hall, built one on top of the other.

holy fam ch nagar s

The Eucharist has not been celebrated for nearly Two Years in the Church, except Sporadically. The Point is that The People do Not want a ‘Mall’ in the free area, but the Diocese Does! So, When the Congregation did not agree to the idea of a Mall, the diocese stopped giving them Masses! The parishioners, in this case, sadly, went to the Civil Court, asking it to Intervene, and to tell the e authorities to give them Masses and Sacraments. More than (rs) 1.2 Crores have been spent by the People in this case. These things can be verified in the courts of the area.

Of course the ecclesiastical authorities would not put it like that. They would say that Each Parish should have a Parish Council. This council would be packed with the toadies of the e-authorities! But the Laity sees through these things.

It is said that More than 50 Parishes in that area are undergoing this kind of trouble. One church has been ‘Locked Up’ for more than 3 Years!

I know of these things First Hand. It was from these journeys to the Holy Family Parish that I wrote about the 2600 Kms in in 104 Hours (Running Time), and the Young Man biting the Young Woman’s lips on the Nagarcoil station platform.

I am considered Very much a Black Sheep in the catholic circles, (Any Wonder?)! Haha. But I am Sure I am One of the Whitest of them. You can form Your own Judgement when I get the time to share on that! …the People of the Parish in question had thought of calling Me to be their Parish Priest! I pointed out to them that 1. A priest could not even offer the Eucharist in a Parish Church without the Knowledge or the Invitation of the Parish Priest, and 2. A Priest could not just ‘Appoint’ himself the PP of a parish. Bishops do that.

And I had further pointed out that, If they were to Invite me to be the PP there, and If I had agreed, the Parish would have ceased being part of the Diocese or even the catholic church. …That made them Think, and they gave up the Idea. But, Considering that the Parishioners could afford to spend rs. 1.2 Crores in litigation, (so far), It can Very Well be Imagined that the diocese would have given up its left arm before giving up the parish!

kottar diocese did involve itself in underhand tactics, using Goons, Rowdyism, and calling the police in, etc. You know how the police are called, especially in strength, like 4 Lorry Strong? With the RAF (Rapid Action Force) thrown in? Exactly. Much money must have been spent on these things.

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arch bp chinnappa of chennaiSome years ago, the archbishop of Madras had been in the News, and had faced shame over matters connected with ‘church Property.’ I have No intention of Insulting anybody, but I do believe in Naming and Shaming the guilty. (PLEASE do not quote Those who live by the Sword, etc. I Know the Verse) The link below is headlined: ‘Court orders arrest of Archbishop Chinnappa.’

(http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/chennai/article1365675.ece)

All this is becoming a matter of FRAUD. This is Rampant in Velankanni, the famous shrine near Nagappattinam. This same thing, FRAUD, raised its Ugly Head in what is called the ‘Town Parish’ in Erode. Here, the People finally gave in, saying, ‘What we gave, We gave to the Lord.’ Meaning, ‘On your head be it.’ …All these places, incidentally, are in Tamil Nadu.

From my Friend, TM, have heard that in Kerala, bishops own Rubber plantations, which bring them Lakhs of rupees as income. Very ‘bishopish,’ of course. We can see just how Well he is sticking to his duties.

You have heard of ‘Social Service Centres?’ Every diocese has one. And there must be cut-throat competition to become the head of one of those. Because you can take your cut before passing any project, giving 10% to the bishop first, of course.

Roughly one third of the world is Muslim, and one third, Christian. And the Christian Churches, organized as they are, can be Such Instruments of Change. And they were that too. But today, the ecclesiastical authorities are rolling about in money, and the Laity find it easier to Retreat into Apathy.

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