Death Enables Birth : The Drama of Earth

01 – 28 September 2018 / 2019 / 2020

“Armoured, protected by their lethal masks,
As in a studio of creative Death
The giant sons of Darkness sit and plan
The drama of the earth, their tragic stage.”

Banks of Ganges, Foothills of Himalayas, Haridwar, India

Shraadh is the annual fortnight during which ceremonies are held for the souls of the deceased/ ancestors on the relevant days. Naarayani Shila is a unique place in India for that. During Shraadh 2015, a Hollywood family visited to perform ceremonies for their departed son.

The geneology records of families of north India are maintained by hundreds of hereditary priests only in Haridwar. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Utah, USA maintains a digital database. When people come to Haridwar to immerse the ashes after cremation or during Shraadh, they visit their respective priests for updating their details.

After this, Ramlila, a dance – drama on the life of Lord Rama,the penultimate Avatar of Lord Vishnu, is performed in 9 parts in as many days across the thousands of villages and towns by local non-artists. Ramlila is the stage-drama about Lord Rama. On the last day, called Dussehra, giant effigies of Ravana, the demon-king filled with fire-crackers are burnt.

During this month, International Literacy Day, International Translation Day, and Hindi Day are also observed.


  • Sanskrit / Hindi
  • Calligraphy
  • Photography
  • Visual art
  • Documentary
  • Spirituality
  • Performance art
  • New media
  • Linguistics
  • Painting
  • Music
  • Writing
  • Education
  • Yoga
  • Everybody
  • Art of Life


  • Visiting Ganges ghats,temples, ashrams
  • Pilgrim interactions
  • Local collaborations
  • Exhibit
  • Print media coverage
  • Local music instruments
  • Conditional access to a Braille printing press
  • Arts mentoring
  • Life coaching
  • Drawing / writing / performing projects


  • En-suite room
  • Shared studio
  • Twice daily Yoga teaching
  • Om & mantra chanting initiation
  • Daily lecture & discussion
  • Options at other cluster-locations
  • 3 meals, 2 herbal tea + snacks
  • Sachet tea/ 24hrs
  • Daily small basket of fresh flowers
  • Towels, bedding
  • Laundry
  • Ayurveda doctor visit after every 3rd day

365 Arya Nagar Jwalapur
Haridwar 249407
Uttarakhand India

01 Sep – 28 September 2018 (28 days)
Haridwar, Banks of Ganges, Foothills of Himalayas
One can apply to join for any 28 continuous days, either the dates mentioned above or earlier / later.

Genealogy_Registers_Haridwar_Anu_Anand_IMG_4804-199x300Image “Cloth-Bound Registers Used to Record the Deaths and Family Details During Visits of Pilgrims at Haridwar”. Courtesy – Anu Anand Hall.

ramlila-at-shriram-bharatiya-kala-kendraImage: A Scene Called ‘Shri Ram Darbar’ From the Ramlila – Lord Ram, Sita, 4 Brothers and Hanuman. Courtesy – Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra.