This coffeetable book was designed for private publication, in 2016. I have written the content while my friend Varun Joshi was the photographer. Below is a preview of the 3000+ words write-up.
CAUGHT IN A TIME WARP
It takes only about 100 kms to drive away from modernity and step back 5000 years! To a land that is Lord Krishna’s abode, to an era when Krishna was busy playing raas-leela with gopis, to an idyllic rural setup dotted with hills, groves, water bodies, forests, temples, kunds and much more. Welcome to Brajbhoomi, a cultural region known for celebrating Lord Krishna’s life till date. For He is the most mischievous son, most romantic lover, most compassionate friend and the wisest guide. He is the God who has shown all the human aspects in His personality, yet stood apart by propagating the concept of good karma, while freeing the world from demons which was His sole motive to become a human incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
The solemn air still carries the sweet music that came from Lord Krishna’s flute, the chirping of birds is resonant of hymns from Sama Veda, the sand on the blissful ground bear the hues of love and peace, the meditating groves are abloom with spirituality, while reverent water bodies are brimming with nectar and lotuses. Truly, this could only be Lord Krishna’s abode.
The Braj region has retained its charm since millenniums, untouched by the lure of commercialisation or urbanisation. It has carried on with its bucolic lifestyle devoted to venerating Lord Krishna every single moment. An egalitarian paradise, Braj is a picture-perfect vintage postcard. A land that guarantees transcendental bliss. One visit to Braj can take you closer to Him, a spiritual journey that could be a life-defining moment for many.
The people of Brij, known as Brijwasi, have never been intrigued by the outside world. They never seek the crystal ball to steal a glance onto the future, for they know they would be doing the same routine, leading the same lifestyle that was centuries ago. They haven’t time travelled to the older times. They’ve just been living the same way they did, while the world changed. They adapted to few things modernity brought along, but maintained the balance and the cosmic connection with Krishna. For them, Lord Krishna is omnipresent, frolicking about the towns or imparting wisdom to the needy, stealing yogurt somewhere or helping the poor. Sometimes He is seen at the temples they go to venerate, or He is heard in the songs they chorus along, and sometimes He is seen escaping from the bylanes of Barsana while the Gopis shoo Him away. He is the pulse of Brij, He is the way of life, He is the world.
Brij region extends far & wide. However, most important places to visit are Mathura, Vrindavan, Nandgaon, Barsana, Govardhan and Gokul.