TAKING A PILGRIMAGE TO TIBET: THE NEW HOLIDAY HOTSPOT
There is no other place on this planet where you can find such an intoxicating blend of humming spirituality, fascinating art works and raw natural beauty other than Tibet. This is a place where every destination is a holy site and every path a pilgrimage. Whether you are headed to conquer Mount Everest “The Holy Mother” or just to explore the chapels in Lhasa city, you will be met by intriguing spirituality.
Though Tibet has had a rough patch which led to the physical destruction during the Cultural Revolution, it has still managed to retain her most glorious cultural jewels. Here are some of the places not to miss on a pilgrimage to Tibet.
It is a magnificent structure that represents the spiritual heart of Tibet and enjoys a long history since the 7th century. While here you can enjoy stepping back in time and explore ancient art and Buddhist paintings. The temple is surrounded by the Barkhor Square which is normally crowded by people from all walks of life both foreigners and locals; it is also surrounded by a prayer path. You will find Tibetans prostrating at the entrance of the temple in honor of Buddha and crowding the quaint chapels. It is a place with an intoxicating spirituality from humming and chanting to clouds of incense and the most precious statue in Tibet the Jowo Rinpoche which artistically depicts the image of Buddha Shakyamuni at age 12. A must see on Tibet holidays.
The Drepung Monastery was built in the 15th century and is considered as one of the greatest monasteries in the world. It boasts of being home to several Dalai Lamas before the building of the Potala Palace. It housed 10 000 monks before but in the present times it houses about 500 strictly monitored monks. It is one of the least damaged of Lhasa’s great monasteries and still retains some of its ancient charm. It is sprawled over a hillside and offers a fascinating experience of ancient living spirituality. As you walk through the narrow paths between chapels full of precious statues and as you gaze at the three storeys high statue of Jampa a future Buddha displayed at age 12 you will have an insight of what it must have been like in the gone era.
Take a pilgrimage trip to the sacred jewel of snow well known as Mount Kailash. It is sacred to Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Bon Faith whom all take a pilgrimage circumambulation of the holy site around Kora. It is considered as holy as it is the mother of the four of great Asian rivers and is a place of jaw dropping natural unspoilt beauty that could only be the habitat of the gods. To take part in the pilgrimage of Kora you must be physically fit as it involves trekking high up the snowy Mount Kailash. The trek is about 52 kilometers long and climbing over 5600m above sea level. It is a wonderful pilgrimage experience in Tibet.