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People

Thousands of people bring decorated baskets of food to the Varanasi ghats to thank Surya the Sun God for sustaining life. This is the only Vedic Festival dedicated to the sun.
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It was during this festival that I had the opportunity to perform the immersion ritual for purification. I immersed myself three times and, after the third time, I had a rather profound rebirthing experience!
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Chhath Festival, Ganges River, Varanasi, India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

Two photos: Thousands of people gather on the Varanasi ghats to commemorate the victory of Krishna over the serpent Kaliya. A boat enters the circle in the water and a boy playing the role of Krishna jumps into the river.
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Nag Nathaiya Krishna Ceremony, Ganges River, Varanasi, India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com
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Nag Nathaiya Krishna Ceremony, Ganges River, Varanasi, India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

Vishwanath Mandir or Hidden Shiva Temple in the village of Guptakashi (means Hidden Shiva) in the Himalayas, Rudraprayag District, Uttarakhand, India, is on the road to Kedarnath Temple.
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Vishwanath Shiva Temple, Guptakashi, India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com
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Ardhnareswar Temple on the right is in Guptakashi (Hidden Shiva) in the Himalayas, Rudraprayag District, Uttarakhand, India. Ardhanareshvara is dedicated to the half-man half-woman deity representing the merging of masculine and feminine, Shiva and Parvati.
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Ardhnareswar Temple beside Shiva Temple, Guptakashi, India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

Toddler is WOWed by a giant Independence Day – Fourth of July – cookie with flags, frosting, and red white and blue sprinkles.

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Toddler and Daddy with giant Independence Day Cookie
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

A typical day on the ghat in Varanasi, India, on the bank of the Ganges River. Laundry drying in the sun as tourists stroll the ghat and a man bathes in the river.
Laundry Assi Ghat Varanasi India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

A typical day on the ghat in Varanasi, India, on the bank of the Ganges River.

Boatmen wait for tourists to ride the river.

 

Boatmen Assi Ghat Varanasi India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

A typical day on the ghat in Varanasi, India, on the bank of the Ganges River. A woman with her son and daughter washing clothing.

 

Mother and children doing laundry Assi Ghat Varanasi India
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com

A typical day on the ghat in Varanasi, India, on the bank of the Ganges River. Boats available for river tours, cows meandering in and out of the water, pedestrians strolling along the river.

 

Assi Ghat Varanasi India with boats, cows, and pedestrians
© Photographer: Michelle K Wood | Agency: Dreamstime.com