Weekly Challenge – Silhouettes

Sunset On The Yamuna

Sunset On The Yamuna

I took this shot two days ago. I was on the boat in Mathura. The river is the Yamuna, one of the most sacred ones in India, and one of the most polluted.

Despite our best efforts to bugger the environment, Nature does have a way of making things beautiful, yes?

Paganism does rule!

The Sun God (??) The Moon Goddess(??)

The Glorious Sun

The Glorious Sun

Before I move on to the next bit of travel, I thought that I would pause a bit, to do indulge in some pop philosophy. I have always loved sunsets, the light of the moon, the light of the sun. Photographically, the light of the sun has a huge impact on how we photograph and see things. Ever since I started photography, I have been very conscious of the light of the sun, how it changes during the day; how it changes with the season; with reflections; how the sun is affected by the polluting effect of our race.

The sun is fundamental to us humans. In many ancient civilizations, the cult of the moon was replaced by the cult of the sun before both were replaced by Gods that are more human in their aspect than the old nature Gods. Surya is considered to be a Hindu God, but his origins predate Hinduism, and go back to the Vedic times, when the Aryans first came into India from Central Asia. We see by the light of the sun. It allows us to see, and seek prey. It allows us to see predators from afar and take defensive action. The light of the sun was concentrated to burn wood. So yes, while the light of the sun allows us to see, it can burn. It can also blind us, as can be testified by anyone who lives in hot countries like my own. There is almost no escape at times, from the hot, blinding light of the mid day sun in summer. Yet, the same sun takes on an almost gentle aspect when it rises, or sets.

The Sun Deity is generally assumed to be male, yet there are civilizations, like the Japanese, where the Sun Deity is female.

Huh? And, we all thought that the sun is associated with the strong, masculine principle of life.

Moonlight Over The Waters

Moonlight Over The Waters

When I was practicing the occult in my teens, I read somewhere that the moonlight reveals that which the sunlight hides. Moonlight reveals strange shadows, and is generally associated with mystery, and the cult of the Moon Goddess. Yet, in some civilizations, like the Japanese, the Moon is male. Chandra, the Moon God of the Vedic/ Hindu times, is male.

The old Moon cults were later perceived to be belonging to the cult of witchcraft, and was thus considered to be heathen and wicked. Hence, the witch trials.

We count our calendar by the Gregorian system, which is a good business calendar. However, if you are a farmer, and want to predict the seasons, then it has to be the lunar calendar. This is something we follow in India, in China and, I believe also in the West, for predicting sowing and reaping seasons.

There is mystery in both, the sun and the moon. When you look at the sun at a more detailed level, then you become aware of solar flares, sunspots and a whirlpool of fiery activity. That which warms us is alive, with the dance of life pulsing through it’s mass. Some believe that the sun’s activities have a significant effect on our climate, something that most climatologists do not fully take into account.

We see in the sun, yet are blind to it.

The moon, it shines in reflected glory. Yet, at night, when the moon comes out, and bathes the waters and the earth in it’s silvery light, out come the creatures of the night. We, of the brighter light, are often scared of the creatures of the night, and so we light up the sky with bright neon lights.

The old days when we marveled at nature are disappearing slowly, and this is sad. We live in the world, and it is the only one we have. Some of the magic and mystery does indeed need to come back.

The light of the sun and the light of the moon are magical, if we just pause and look, and take the time to wonder at the beauty of it all.

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