Monday, May 01, 2006

Pilgrimage and the Golden Buddha

Walking the Barkhor Circuit was quite the experience as we were surrounded by many pilgrims doing the circuit around Jokhang Temple. Most were chanting as they twirled their prayer pole while others thumbed through their beads.

There was the odd one or two pilgrims who were doing the pilgrimage towards the temple. We were lucky enough to witness a very cool and touching exchange between two pilgrims as one gave money to the one doing the pilgrimage. Ian's video (see his blog in a couple days) managed to capture the first part of it. Afterwards, they touched forheads and some words were whispered. Ian and I turned to each other and were in awe at the sight.

Many pilgrims ended up in the front of the temple and performed the pilgrimage there ... quite the sight. We later found out what they were all praying towards when we finally went into the temple.

Inside the temple is the Holy Golden Buddha brought in from India by Princess Wenchang (the princess who requested the creation of Jokhang Temple) and this Buddha statue was blessed by Buddha himself! By luck we managed to get into the room with the Buddha by accident and we didn't even realize that that was THE Buddha! Yes we were ignorant. We found out later by tagging along an English tour group :D It was pretty cool to see so many ancient Tibetan treasures.


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