Introduction: The Ganges with Sue Perkins: Episode 1 (04:44)
Sue Perkins will go on a journey spanning 1,500 miles from the Himalayas to the Bay of Bengal. The comedian arrives in Gangotri to travel to the source of the Ganges River. Perkins hopes visiting India will help her cope with the past difficult year.
Traveling to the Ganges River Source (04:53)
Hindus believe the Ganges River is a living goddess after Ganga when she fell through the locks of Lord Shiva's hair. Perkins arrives at base camp. Pilgrimages are difficult in order to appreciate the calm and serene.
Ganges River Source (05:08)
The river's source is 2.5 miles above sea level; every step takes a lot of effort. A Baba offers blessings to pilgrims in a small erected temple; he spends 13 hours a day in silent prayer, communing with the goddess Ganga and the mountains. Perkins finds it difficult to experience the emotion of her father's death and grieve in London.
Gangotri, India (03:39)
Perkins visits with pilgrims who arrive to celebrate effigy of the Goddess Ganga traveling down the river to its winter home. Up to 30 million people a year visit the region.
The Clicking Swami (04:36)
Swami Sundaranand has charted how the region has changed since he arrived in 1948 through photographs. The glacier has retreated over two miles in the past fifty years. Hindu mythology teaches that Mother Ganga will disappear during the age of the downfall.
Mukba, India (06:38)
A local woman describes how the village has changed since it became a tourist location. Women of the village dress Perkins in ceremonial garb. The effigy arrives in the temple where she will remain until the spring.
Rishikesh, India (02:30)
The city is nestled in forested hills and very crowded. Perkins visits a clothing store popular with tourists.
Local Ashram (07:49)
At the Ganga Aarti ceremony, people praise the sacred river and the goddess that lives within her; the local swami sings nightly. Elise describes why she left the corporate world. Moksha is the release from the cycle of rebirth; every Hindu is required to perform Seva.
Traveling to Haridwar (07:52)
Swami Ramdev is a yoga guru known for his business success packaging Hinduism for the masses. Patanjali Ayurved sells products using natural practices; the company has 100 factories and employs over 200,000 peoples.
Perkins attends the Ganga Aarti ceremony on the banks of the Ganges River in Haridwar. The pilgrimage touches the comedian. On the next episode, she will travel to Varanasi.
Credits: The Ganges with Sue Perkins: Episode 1 (00:32)
Credits: The Ganges with Sue Perkins: Episode 1
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