When you wait a little while to post something that is on your mind, you kind of lose your momentum. I’ll do my best to get it back for this one. It’s kind of a follow up to my post on Sept 14th, Not Benign Cultural Tradition, but it stands alone as well.
The other day I heard O. sharing with someone that he (and some co-workers) were thinking and praying about one day building a Christian colony (neighborhood) where we could all live and other Christians could join us. My first reaction was, oh no way, we must be a light among the darkness, even where we live.
But the day after hearing this idea was Saturday. Saturday was the day that the ganesh idol was dunked in the water. I was out for Ladies Visiting and E. and C. were with me. As our vehicle wound it’s way through the muddy streets filled with dancing people and the beat of drums E.’s eyes took it all in.
All Saturday and Sunday she was repeating the chants the children said while ganesh was carried down the street. Then when she saw the pictures of ganesh and the festival on the news she was full of questions about him. She called him the “children’s god.” At first I didn’t get it and then it hit me – he’s an elephant. Of course he looks like a children’s god to a 4 year old.
E. has been fascinated by all things Hindu for as long as I can remember. It is a constant prayer of mine (and others) that she be protected from the evil all around her.
So, after this happened with E. I started to think differently about the idea of a Christian colony. At least there our children would be isolated from these festivals. Here’s an example of what happens right at our own home. On Saturday a man came to my door and gave me a packet of Prasad (sweets offered to idols) and a small plaster ganesh idol. Gee, thanks. Just what I never wanted. In a Christian colony that would never happen. E. and C. would have all their little Christian friends on their street to play with, sounds ideal? Read Part 2.