Ganapati and the elephantastic noise
It has been 9 years that Ganesh festival was impressing my eyes (see previous notes); now it mostly impresses my ears!
Below is the typical musical scene I face when going home. And also once I am home, sound-proofing not being a forte of Indian houses.
Every year millions of Ganesh idols, the God with an elephant head, are put into water, taking off with him the sins of the poor mortals. The latter spending fortunes(yes yes, even poor people invest a lot. Especially the poor in fact) to have the best looking (or most impressive) Ganesh of the neighbourhood. And to let everybody know about it - the most effective way being using huge speakers and playing techno music full fledge.
On top of aggressing ears, the festival makes me feel bad, personally. It is so bad for the environment, these tons of Plaster of Paris (which does not dissolve at all even after 48 hours, unlike clay (source)) and heavily toxic paints thrown in the sea every year…
But let us be positive! There are some good initiatives bringing hope. Immersing the idols in tanks instead of rivers. The chocolate statue drown in milk and distributed to poor children. The Ganesh made out of fish food with natural paints made out of spices. So of course it creates metaphysical problems, and the religious experts have been debatting about the future of the immersed Ganapatis. Ending up in a landfill? In the digestive system of fishes? Or in the tummy of poor kids? Is it religiously correct? I have obviously no theological expertise but ending up as trash rejected by the sea is not the sexiest thing either!
Sources:http://indianexpress.com/article/cities/pune/pune-all-fiv...; http://www.sakaaltimes.com/NewsDetails.aspx?NewsId=569081... ; http://www.storypick.com/ganesh-idols/; http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report-chocolate-ganesh-creates-a-buzz-on-social-media-2126669