Archive for Thrissur Pooram

Finding the Sublime

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 14, 2012 by stevemccurry

 Rajasthan, India

For most of us, there is only the unattended
Moment, the moment in and out of time,
The distraction fit, lost in a shaft of sunlight,
The wild thyme unseen, or the winter lightning
Or the waterfall, or music heard so deeply
That it is not heard at all, but you are the music
While the music lasts.
T.S. Eliot

Yamdrok Tso Lake, Lhasa, Tibet

What are the scenes of nature that elevate the mind
and produce the sublime sensation?
…the hoary mountain, the solitary lake,
the aged forest and torrent falling over rocks.

– Hugh Blair, lecture notes from 1783.

Dal Lake, Srinagar, Kashmir

Whereas the beautiful is limited, the sublime is limitless,
so that the mind in the presence of the sublime,
attempting to imagine what it cannot, has pain in the
failure but pleasure in contemplating the
immensity of the attempt.
– Immanuel Kant, Critique of Pure Reason



Bayon, Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Lives of great people all remind us, we can make our lives sublime,
and, departing, leave behind us, footprints on the sands of time.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


Preah Khan Temple, Angkor Wat, Camboida

Inle Lake, Myanmar/Burma

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Agra, India

Kathmandu, Nepal

Rajasthan, India

Thrissur Pooram, Kerala, India

Weligama, Sri Lanka


Greatly begin.
Though thou have time, but for a line, be that sublime.

Not failure, but low aim is crime.
-James Russell Lowell

Gujarat, India


Road to Sarobi, Afghanistan

Maimana, Afghanistan



Rajasthan, India

Four sublime states of mind  taught by the Buddha:

Sympathetic Joy

Sri Lanka

Taj Mahal, Agra, India
Built with translucent white marble and inlaid with gems from China, Tibet, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, and the Arabian peninsula

The Taj Mahal in Agra, India, and the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain,
are two of the world’s most iconic buildings.
They both evoke passionate emotions, even love, despite being
on opposite ends of the historical and architectural spectrum.

Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain
Constructed with a steel frame covered with titanium sheathing

In both buildings shape, size, scale, proportion, texture, color,
and light work together to sublime effect.

Basel, Switzerland


To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man;
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things.
William Wordsworth 

Gatherings, Protests, and Celebrations

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2011 by stevemccurry

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts …
– William Shakespeare, “As You Like It”


Young Monks at Tashi Lhunpr, Xigaze, Tibet


New York City, USA




Via Condotti, Rome, Italy


Mumbai/Bombay, India

LEBANON-10067, Lebanon, Druze Elders, 03/1982

Druze elders, Lebanon


Debating Monks at Bylakuppe, Karnataka, India


One of Mumbai’s laughing clubs, India


Peshawar, Pakistan




Shia Mosque, Kabul, Afghanistan


Rajasthan, India


Monsoon Festival, Kathmandu, Nepal


Kumbh Mela Festival, India

It is wonderful, the power of a faith like that, that can make multitudes upon multitudes of the old and weak and the young and frail enter without hesitation or complaint upon such incredible journeys and endure the resultant miseries without repining.
– Mark Twain


Temporary pontoon bridges across the Ganges River help to facilitate movement of some of the thirty million Hindu devotees who will take part in the Kumbh Mela Festival, Allahabad, India.


Thrissur Pooram, Kerala, India

Thrissur Pooram is the most extravagent and colorful festival in Kerala.  Attended by tens of thousands of devotees, the festivities include dozens of caparisoned elephants.  These Indian elephants are loved, revered, groomed, and given a prestigious place in the state’s culture.


Thrissur Pooram, Kerala, India


Ganesh Chaturthi festival, Chowpatty Beach, Mumbai, India


Yangon, Burma/Myanmar during the Thingyan Festival


Jokhang Palace, Lhasa, Tibet



These young Wadabi men are taking part in the Garawal, an annual marriage ritual performed by the tribe. In this event, dramatic make-up is applied to the faces of the men, who dance and make exaggerated expressions in an attempt to attract new brides.


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