Sadhus are dreadlocked holy men who have left behind all material attachments and live in caves, forests and temples all over India and Nepal. Here’s an intriguing look into the life of a Sadhu!
Sadhus in Kathmandu, Nepal: An Intriguing Look Inside Their Lives
I met this Sadhu at the Pashupatinath temple in Kathmandu. You may notice burn scars on the inside of his right arm. In Nepalese, he shared the story of how he had been badly burned when he was a child and how a local holy man took him in and began teaching him the ways of the Sadhus.
Many Sadhus beg in the Pashupatinath temple in Kathmandu, but only for enough money for the bare necessities, such as food and clothing. Some say they are glorified beggars.
Sadhus are especially common at this temple in Nepal, which is rated as one of the most important Shaiva pilgrimage sites. These holy men live solitary lives and use intoxicants as a path to spiritual insight.
Becoming a Sadhu is a difficult lifestyle. I found it interesting to learn that Sadhus are considered dead to themselves. They may even be required to attend their own funeral before they are able to seek out a guru and begin the process of transforming into a holy man.
The vast majority of Sadhus in India and Nepal are Yogis. I’m guessing this Sadhu has done a bit of yoga in his lifetime.
Photo Tip: When taking close-up portraits where you want the subject to stand out, it is a good idea to set your camera at a large aperture. This will blur the background, while keeping the subject in focus.
Check out our Photography page to purchase postcards and prints of our photos!
If you are curious to learn more about Nepal, you can view some of our other Nepal posts: