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A promenade of Naga Sadhus enters the ancient city of Varanasi along the Ganges River in north central India. Every six years, the Sadhus interrupt their mendicant life devoted to chanting, sacrifice, and prayer, to celebrate the Kumbh Mela. During this time, all Naga Sadhus travel down the Ganges tributaries, growing in number, until approximately three thousand mass at the Kumbh Mela. Wearing only wreaths of marigolds, the Naga, or naked, Sadhus shun clothing to embrace suffering and discomfort in the frigid temperatures of the mountains of northern India. The Sadhus believe they will reach Nirvana, the Hindu version of heaven, by renouncing the trappings of daily life and sacrificing creature comforts.

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A promenade of Naga Sadhus enters the ancient city of Varanasi along the Ganges River in north central India. Every six years, the Sadhus interrupt their mendicant life devoted to chanting, sacrifice, and prayer, to celebrate the Kumbh Mela. During this time, all Naga Sadhus travel down the Ganges tributaries, growing in number, until approximately three thousand mass at the Kumbh Mela. Wearing only wreaths of marigolds, the Naga, or naked, Sadhus shun clothing to embrace suffering and...
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