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恒河朝圣太艰辛?瓶装圣水快递到你家

更新时间:2016-8-27 8:16:11 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Holy Water for Pilgrims, via the Mail
恒河朝圣太艰辛?瓶装圣水快递到你家

Every summer, hundreds of thousands of Indians, barefoot and draped in orange clothing, make a 100-mile pilgrimage on foot to fetch water from the sacred Ganges River that they then offer at their local temples to Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction.

每年夏天都有数十万印度人光着脚、披着橘色的衣服,徒步跋涉100英里前往神圣的恒河取水,将它供奉给自己当地寺庙里的湿婆,也就是印度教中的毁灭之神。

This year, they have a less arduous option: The postal service is using its 155,000 offices across India to deliver holy water from the Ganges — for far less than $1 a bottle. As one postal official put it, “If Muhammad cannot go to the mountain, the mountain comes to him.”

今年,他们有了一个不那么艰苦的选择:邮政部门利用自己遍布印度各地的15.5万个邮政点,以每瓶不超过1美元的价格,为民众运送恒河的圣水。就像一位邮政官员所说,“如果穆罕默德不能去圣山,圣山会来到他面前。”

Ravi Shankar Prasad, India’s union minister of communication and information technology, led the initiative. “If the postman can deliver mobile phones, saris, jewelry and apparel, then why not Ganga water?” he asked in announcing it last month, using the Hindu name for the river.

印度通信和信息技术部(Ministry of Communications and Information Technology)部长拉维·尚卡尔·普拉萨德(Ravi Shankar Prasad)领导了这一创举。“如果邮递员可以送手机、莎丽、珠宝和服装,为什么不能送恒河圣水呢?”他在上个月宣布这一消息时问道。

The water is drawn from two sources: Gangotri, a small town in the Greater Himalayan Range and the origin of the Ganges River; and Rishikesh, one of the holiest cities for Hindus.

运送的圣水有两个来源:喜马拉雅山脉里的小镇甘戈德里,也就是恒河源头所在地;印度最神圣的城市之一里希盖什。

The postal service has the water bottled — at an undisclosed location — with minimal labeling, holding 7 or 17 ounces. The smaller bottles from Rishikesh, which is easier to access, sell for 15 rupees, or 22 cents; those from Gangotri, where access roads have been blocked by monsoon rains, cost 25 rupees, or 37 cents. Postal officials said the revenue covered only the costs.

邮局将圣水装瓶——具体装瓶地点没有公开,瓶上没有什标签,每瓶装7或17盎司(约合500毫升)水。小瓶子来自更容易到达的里希盖什,每瓶售价15卢比(约合1.5人民币);来自甘戈德里的圣水的售价则为每瓶25卢比(约合2.5人民币),通往那里的路因雨季而阻塞。邮政官员表示,送水的收入只够抵销开支。

Though it is heavily polluted by sewage and industrial waste, the Ganges provides water to 500 million people for everyday use, and for all those offerings to Shiva.

尽管已经受到污水和工业废水的严重污染,恒河依然在为5亿人提供日常用水,也是所有供奉给湿婆圣水的来源。

Priests in Gangotri have protested the government initiative, fearing a decrease in pilgrims, though it is too early to tell whether the road is less crowded. In any case, the postal service reported that it had delivered 70,000 bottles of the holy water in the program’s first few weeks.

甘戈德里的神职人员对政府的这项举措表示了抗议,担心朝圣者数量会减少,尽管现在判断这条路是否会不那么拥挤还为时过早。不管怎样,邮局表示,这一项目开启后的几周里,他们已经送出7万瓶圣水。

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