Before I arrived, for the second time, in India Yoga poses for lower back pain in January 2001, all I knew about the Maha Kumbh Mela was that it is a Yoga poses for lower back pain spiritual celebration that occurs every twelve years in four locations to commemorate one of the many Hindu creation myths. Though the legend varies a bit from individual to individual, it is essentially an epic tale of the victory of gods over demons over the kumbh pot of immortality after Lord Vishnu promises to them the nectar inside if they churn an ocean of milk. When the kumbh finally appears, the demons try to steal it from Jayant, the god who holds it. The myth purports that when this battle was going on, several drops of the nectar contained in the pot spilled onto the earth in four locations Haridwar, Ujjain, Nasik, and Allahabad, where Jayant stopped every third day to rest.
Allahabad is considered the most Sacred because of its auspicious location at the convergence of the Yamuna and Ganges rivers. As my departure date grew nearer, and coverage of the opening bathing day with all the Naga holy men and sadhus graced the front page of The New York Times, my ignorance, and much of the world’s, began to dissipate. I learned that there were approximately twenty to forty million other pilgrims expected to attend this holy site during the forty-day festival. Then, just hours before boarding my flight, news that a monumental earthquake had struck the Gujarat region of India the previous morning reached the international airwaves.
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