Recently, 9 students from Senior School (Grades 9 and 11) embarked on a unique ten-day journey to discover our sacred river, the Ganga. With an open mind, like any amateur traveller, the students undertook the yatra that traced the river from its origin in the north of the country, downstream, to the north-east.
From frost-bites to sunburns, subzero to the scorching forties, the “yatris” witnessed it all.
On this Ganga Ek Antaryatra, I personally could see, not only the diversity in our country, in terms of varying temperatures, but also the greatly diverse and rich culture that I now feel proud to be a part of.
I always used to say, ‘I am proud to be an Indian’ but after this yatra I realized that you understand the essence of just how much pride you have ,once you travel and get to know your country and its people.
The gist for the 10 days of yatra was discovery: discovery of the river, discovery of people, discovery of our culture. Yet, this discovery crossed all boundaries when it also involved a discovery of the self.
I was highly sceptical at the beginning about the idea that travelling for 10 days would actually help us discover ourselves; however, it truly was an antaryatra.
People do not change overnight…how about over 10 nights? I discovered things about myself that I never knew! I felt more spiritually connected with myself than I have ever felt before.
With a group of amazing people around me, I was proud to be just me. Many of the plans backfired while on the trip for various reasons like unreliable weather conditions and time. However, we always seemed to think of an alternative and enjoy it just as much. We truly learnt how to live in the moment.
I went on the yatra with a bunch of strangers whom I had merely seen strolling in the corridors of Takshashila, but came back with a team, a close group of friends who had been with me in the best and worst of times.
Holding hands while walking through the densely-crowded streets of Varanasi made me realize just how much I cared about these people, who were so distant a few days ago. The people, the places, the experience… I am certain I will never forget.