I thought I had it tough, but NO !!!
Most of you have read my post on me trying to explain death to Jr. I thought I had it tough, but this was a piece of cake compared to what I witnessed today.
Had taken all the grandpas and grandmas to the Livermore temple today. We were in the inner sanctum, praying to Balaji. The priest had just finished his Archana prayer and when he was done, he started doing all the standard things in terms of blessings..
In any typical south indian temple, once the priest finishes reciting the prayer, he first gives a few spoons of the water (that has been blessed) to everyone, this is followed by placing a crown (that was placed on god's head) on every ones head, then he distributes some fruits or nuts or whatever edible item was used as offering to the deity that day.
In front of us was a kid, must have been 5-6 years old. He was with his mom and grand parents. My guess is he is from North India, and or has not been to a south indian temple in his life.
Here is the converstion I heard verbatim :
Mom : son, the priest is going to give you some water to drink. please show him your hand and receive the water !
Son : I cant hold the water, how will I drink it ?
Mom : just open your hands, he will put a few spoons on your hand. I will help you drink it.
Shows his hands, then mom helps him get a few drops in his mouth ..
Son : This is not water !
Mom : It is water, but it is holy water.
Son : Is it coffee ?
Mom : No, it is not coffee!
Son : Are you sure, because it tasted like cold coffee or something !
by now the rest of the people who could hear then cant stop themselves.. they are all controlling their laughter. by this time the priest comes with the Sadaari(crown) to place on everyones head..
Son : Why is he doing that ?
Mom : Just show your head.. it was placed on the god's (statue's) head. If they place it on your head, you get blessed by god.
Son : I think he is trying to see if it will fit someones head ! is that what he is doing ?
(by now the other people in the sanctum are cracking up with visions of Cindarella in their head)
Grandma : (smiling by now because mom is clearly not able to answer the kid). Just show your head to the priest and I will explain everything to you once we go home..
Son : okay !
Finally the kid showed his head to the priest, then took the sweets that were offered to everyone and walked out..
Man, I would gladly explain the concept of death to a 100 kids, hell , I will teach them group lessons than handle this one kid !
Jr. has been way too good to me by comparision !!!