Friday, April 18, 2014

Nascent Nelipots

Barefoot Bhakti..

The more I  travel this land (India) the smaller I feel and probably lack words to describe the deep feeling it leaves me with.

Our Rishi munis have lived detached from the material world for thousands of years.

We have visitors from world over who come to this land to understand the meaning of this enigmatic country. For us city brats it is much about how terribly inadequate our systems are and its best to flee, it does take a while to understand what a land of plenty we are, pause; and wonder what still keeps going?

Sometimes we need to come full circle to understand this, we are not a 'trend' driven culture and words like fashion/trend are fairly recent, probably still not understood conceptually as a nation. So, something like walking barefoot which is either for reasons of material detachment or poverty, is now 'fashionable'

Often enough it is not adopted for either of the above reasons and there is a group of people doing it. The Nascent Nelipots!

The original pundit in the background does believe in footwear. The one in focus has clearly been a nelipot for a while and to him it's not just a holiday trend.

The soles get tougher and acclimatise after a while of walking barefoot.

#Nelipots have even creeped into the punk souls so we have an overlapping cross trend here. Bare-soled punks!

I usually strike a conversation with people I photograph so the picture has more depth than just a flash image. 

Why does one choose to walk on the rough streets of India without footwear? 
It is of course not the easiest terrain to walk on keeping in mind the weather & our not so clean uneven streets. Some just took off their shoes in the heat and didn't put them back on but it has a deeper meaning, spiritually; to absorb praan (life) from holy land, which is commendable, pilgrims do this as a form of tapp.