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The Many Faces Of Maha Kumbh
Part 1: The Greatest Open Religious Rendezvous
Hinduism is undoubtedly the most "elastic, eclectic and all-embracing of religions", and the Maha Kumbh Mela is a glowing tribute to this aspect of this universal faith. GO TO GALLERY
 More of this Feature
• Open Religious Rendezvous
• A Global Communion
• Foreign Reactions!
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"I believe the Ganges is symbolic of the spirituality flowing in our hearts..." CHAWLA2
 Related Resources
• Kumbh Photo Gallery
• Kumbh Mela @ A Glance
• Kumbh Mela on the Web
• Kumbh @ Indian Culture


A Universal Confluence

The Kumbh has welcomed everyone - agnostics, atheists and ascetics all alike - scholars, philosophers, occultists, palmists, sorcerers, face-readers, spiritualists, scientists, politicians, criminals, simple and complex people of all sects and society, caste and creed. Indeed, this mammoth riverside festival has seen human beings from every walk of life come together into its ocean of humming humanity and mingle together as do the waters of the Ganges, the Yamuna and the Saraswati rivers at Prayag Sangam, the holy site of Kumbh Mela 2001.

It Happens Only In Hinduism!
It is obvious that Hinduism's greatest gathering should represent the religion in all respects. But perhaps the Kumbh Mela represents Hinduism like no other festival. Kumbh is arguably the oldest of Hindu festivals. It is because of its all-embracing factors that it has endured down the centuries and adapted itself to every one. The same is true with the religion itself. This century's first Maha Kumbh proved this all over again, that only a great religion like Hinduism can have such a great festival, the likes of which, in its vastness and variety, is a rare thing to find anywhere else.

Hinduism At Its Grandest!
In fact, Hinduism was seen at its magnificent best in this first Maha Mela of the millennium. The Maha Kumbh has also proved one thing: That so many millions of the truly devout belong to this multi-cultural religion and so great is the attraction it has for the rest of the world, that it needs no propagation or conversion.

An Occasion Not To Miss!
From jetsetter sages with their cellular phones in hand to the non-sartorial Naga saints, from the genuine globetrotter to nonagenarian grandmas, none missed the auspicious dip at the confluence of the holy rivers at Allahabad. Because of the rare and auspicious alignment of the stars, the 2001 Kumbh Mela has become a rare occurrence, which happens only once in 144 years!

No Entry For Fundamentalists!
The open-to-all Kumbh party is a true showcase of the universal and inclusive spirit of Hinduism and its magnificent diversity. Even a Muslim family took a dip in the Triveni Sangam on Paush Purnima. This explains why fundamentalist forces like the VHP and the RSS have failed in their attempt to undermine the broad view of this mystic Mela.

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