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Lal Baba, the Ultimate Sādhu

“Some offer their wealth, their austerity, and their practice of yoga as sacrifice, while the ascetics with strict vows offer their study of scriptures and knowledge as sacrifice.”

(Bhagavad Gita)


This is a picture of Lal Baba who is a Saivite (follower of Shiva) sādhu.

He was born in the Indian state of Bihar but he stays most of the time in Varanasi (Benaras).

I didn’t see him since a few months, no one could tell me where he was whenever I was asking at the ghats so I was happy to see him again a few days ago as I was walking with my friend Rajesh along the Ganges.

People call him Lal Baba because he mostly wears garments in red shades, in Hindi “lal” means red.

His huge turban keeps a few meters of dreadlocks and gives him an impressive presence.

Sometimes people think that he can’t see much because of cataract but in fact his eyes have an amazing deep blue colour.

I told him that Benaras is not the same without him and he laughed.

This is a link to another picture with him shot a few years ago:

I might go and see him tomorrow as I told him that I’ll give him a few pictures this week.


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Taken on December 5, 2009