In Lhasa, visit to the deities

I think there is no such person, even indifferent to travels, who would not dream to visit Tibet. So attractive the image of this amazing country on "Roof world". The most affordable and convenient way to the edge of snow lies through the Himalayan Kingdom of Nepal. His capital Kathmandu is connected with the Tibetan Main City Lhasa Regular Air Survey. Only from here in Tibet there are international flights. I was lucky to live in Kathmandu. And, of course, I could not miss the case and at the first opportunity went to Tibet’s heart – Lhasa.

My neighbor on board the liner of the Chinese airline was a pretty American. A significant part of life she lived in India. Married Tibetan, and she has a second wife. Her husband has a spouse – Tibeta. It’s not too surprised me. I knew that polygamy remain among Tibetans. Moreover, it was not surprised if it turned out that the ananda was so called the American, two husbands. Polyandria – also a long-standing Tibetan tradition.

Already in the plane I made sure that Tibetans are a very cohesive nation. It seems that everyone knows each other. Ananda told the plane with a Tibetan family living in Germany. Immediately it turned out that her chapter at one time was a teacher husband of American. By the way, a teacher’s Tibetan wife – German. I do not know, the only one or not.

A new acquaintance recommended me a good hotel in Lhasa – "Yak". Relatively cheap, with all the amenities, in the old center, and also the interiors of the hotel are keen in Tibetan style, praised Ananda. The advice of the fellow workers was very useful to me. But more on that later.

The plane scored height, and we ended up with the Himalayas. Awesome Various Various Exclamations are heard: Everest! Sagarmatha! (So ​​he calls for Nepali), Jomolungma! (this is in Tibetan). Under us, rather, next to us, the highest peak in the world – 8848 meters.

No words and paints will be enough to describe fantastic panoramas, unfolding under the wing of the aircraft. Especially I was struck by the appearance of an endless Tibetan plateau framed by eight-thousanders of Himalayas. It seems that we admire the snow kingdom of some kind of unearthly world.

Fascinates the sophistication of the paints. Melting glaciers form turquoise mountain lakes. Horizon is hot orange-purple haze. Immediately recall pictures of Roerichs with their juicy festive flavor. But even they cannot transfer the entire feast of the paints of the mountains: from pearl-white to Iscin-black.

But the flight lasts only one hour, and here we have already landed at Lhasa Airport, one of the most highly mountainous: height – more than 3 kilometers above sea level. Preliminary stripes clamped in the hollow mountains. Immediately notice the strongest contrast between the mountain slopes of Tibet and Nepal. In the kingdom they are emerald, completely covered with forests and other vegetation. The ash-gray gamma is dominated here. On the mountains and hills – neither the kestic and, as it seems, neither blasting.

Thanks Roericham

At the airport I was already waiting for a jeep department of the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Tibetan Autonomous Area (TAR) with the accompanying. Here you have to make a little retreat. Tar is a special area of ​​China and you can only get there on a special visa. After one and a half months waiting a visa I got. However, I was supposed to accompany the representative of the local Foreign Ministry on the trip.

I barely north in a jeep, I immediately asked Zhana, my guide, in which hotel he is lucky: I do not pull me. Zhang reassured – everything will be fine.

From the airport to Lhasa – almost 100 kilometers. An unusually scenic road goes along the Zzangpo – the Great Sacred River Brahmaputra. Against the background of ash mountains, snow caps of high peaks are especially spectacularly looking. Pleases the eye of the emerald greenery of barley fields.

And Tibetan villages! Each household – a small fortress, discharged with high stone dull. All buildings are also stone, painted with lime. The poles are solved above the houses to which pieces of multicolored matter with mantrah prayers are tied.

I could not believe that I was going on the land of the sacred Tibet. Finally convinced that when I saw people crawling along the road. It turns out that they are so moving around the sacred hill. On pilgrims – erased, dusty leather aprons, knee pads and elbows. On the rocks of the wreated place drawn bright paintings depicting Buddha, Boddhisattva – all sorts of Tibetan deities.

Very happy when I saw under the tree yaks with long black wool. Without them the life of Tibetans is completely impossible. They give mountains milk, oil, wool, meat, skin. Lhasa disappointed me at first: quite a modern city with glass and concrete buildings. But the mood instantly rose as soon as I saw the famous Potal – Dalai Lam Palace.

Giant Red and White Colossus reigned over the city.

After looking at Potal, I did not notice how we got to the hotel. Here I am alert. The hotel looked too elegant for my modest budget. My worst fears were justified: the number pulled on 150 dollars, I could pay at best five times less. But I finally finally finished the calculation of the Tibet Foreign Affairs Department, who estimated my four-day stay on "Roof of the world" almost one and a half thousand dollars.

All my protests were noted: "You are VIP, "very important person", Therefore, should live and serviced at the highest category. No Dano".

In this, it would seem, a hopeless situation, the Roerichs helped me. Literally on the eve of the trip, I read the diaries.N.Roerich "On the trails of the Mountain Asia", Where brightly describes the misties of Chinese and Tibetan officials, all the time inserting sticks in the wheels of the expedition. And only decisiveness and assertiveness helped them overcome.

For almost a hundred years in this regard, little has changed. Officials are still instinctively trying to complicate the lives of traveling foreigners. But inspired by the example of Roerich, I went to the offensive and firmly abandoned all expensive services. I was threatened by the deportation, promised to pass the security services, if I do not accept the service at the highest level. But I was adamant, and local comrades surrendered.

In the end, Zhang asked, in what hotel I would like to settle. Here I was very useful for the Council of the American Povertens: I immediately called the hotel "Yak", where soon and accommodated. All my alarms finally disappeared, as soon as I got to the walls of the ancient temple of Zhochang. Around the sanctuary, the famous bazaar Pharkor. Here is a Tibetan with long braids trades smoke butter. And here the sellers are separated by a ram carcass. Of course, this is not consistent with Buddhist love for all living things, but severe Tibet is not hot india. Without meat on the highlands not survive. In addition, they were stabbed the ram is not here, at the walls of Zhochanga. Taste was bridal, brought. It is possible that the sin of the murder assumed not a Tibetz-Buddhist, but, say, Uigur Muslim. Hung by decorations from turquoise – the beloved stone of Tibetans, the red-looking girl offers souvenirs. Circle of the Mountain of the Chinese Shirpotreb. Many monks and nuns sit right on Earth, read prayers and collect alms.

Human river flowing continuously around Zhochanga. Many are constantly crowded prayer drums, crossed the rosary, mumble the main mantra in honor of Buddhisattva Mercy Avakhokiteshwara "Om Mani Padme Hum". All clouds of fairly caustic smoke from huge idols located at the central entrance to Zhochang. Dry grass in them throw from huge bags.

In Potala, where you feel your little

The next morning in the hall of the hotel I was expected to be accompanying Zhang. The misunderstandings of the day did not have the slightest mention. We are going to Potal. Not on a limousine, but also with comfort: by taxi – "Volkswagen". Before any point in Lhasa, 100,000th city, a fee for a tax – 10 yuan (1 US dollar – about 8 yuan). Generally, the Chinese love uniformity in everything. So, on all the vast territory of the PRC, one time zone is installed. Therefore, in Lhasa Lightly almost until midnight. At the foot of the Potala feel their little, but not depressed. Admires the human genius. Thought over the centuries, unshakable rock rises above Lhasa and looks like part of nature, the natural continuation of the Stater Rock.

Potala includes two palaces – red and white. Red color symbolizes the religious, the spiritual power of the Dalai Lama, and the white – secular, state. Giant halls with colossal statues of Maitraen’s coming Buddha, with the coming of which all people will be rewarded by merits, are replaced by narrow transitions and steep steps. Endless shelving with Tibetan books – plates wrapped with silk cloth, hundreds of volumes of the Buddhist Canon Gandzhura and comments for it.

Especially I was impressed by the high memorial halls dedicated to the Honor Dalai Lamam. Huge stupes come out here. Ritual cloths hang from the ceiling.

Endless walls of Potala are painted by multi-kilometer frescoes. Very impressive gods protectors with scattered eyes and expressive facial expressions. The deity of the cubeer’s wealth holds in the hands of a magic mangoste, who joins the precious stones (so here’s how it managed to get so many gems for the rich decorations of the statues of Buddha!)

Pilgrimniks – old and young men and women, townspeople in modern clothes and nomads in Toulups and felt boots. And this is with 30 degrees of heat! In their hands they have packs with butter. Praying come to copper sacrificial bowls and put oil with spoons. Fitili is harmful in the bowls. White oil is clearly highlighted in the twilight. Air is saturated with spicy smell.

The rest of the current Dalai Lama of the XIV-go, fled in 1959 to India after the defeat of the Anti-Chinese uprising, look home-made. Warm red and yellow flavor prevails in them. Nearby are chambers of previous Dalai Lam. Of these small rooms, for centuries, not only Tibetan, but also Mongolian, Buryat, Tuvinsky, Kalmyk Buddhists. It is curious that the building of the current government of the Tibetan Autonomous Area is exactly opposite the Potala, but below. They are divided by a giant square. It looks empty, and the scale of the open space allows you to feel the greatness of the Potala.

Finally, in countless steps, we rose to the roof of the chief palace of Tibet. All lhasa – like a palm. The expressive views of the sculptures of dragons, Lviv, other animal guardians are directed to the city. And of course, the images of numerous deities of Potala carefully observe. No wonder the Word itself "Lhasa" (more precisely, by the way, it would be "Hlasa") means "The place where the deity dwells".

Golden Chakra – Buddhist teaching wheel on the cornily support two gold deer. Blind shine gilded roofs, over which copper prayer drums rise.

Zhang has long ceased to tell. I have to mobilize modest knowledge in Tibetan and warehouses read explanatory inscriptions. In the end, I had to regret Zhang, who said that the bride is waiting for us to go to tea.

I am pleased to accept the invitation. In Lhasa is the heat, and refreshing just right. In addition, on highlands it is recommended to drink as much liquid as possible. In general, before the trip to Tibet, I was a little worried – somehow suffered a height of almost 4 thousand meters? Many suffer on this height from dizziness, weakness, lack of oxygen. Dr. in Kathmandu handed me a whole package with medicines. Fortunately, they did not need me: I felt in Lhasa just fine. Maybe not last because of the tea that drank in a huge number. And Tibetan, more like soup, slightly salted, with milk and smoked butter. And chinese green. And jasmine.

Zhang and his bride also treated me tea. We brought long glasses with a special weld. On the bottom there were not only tea sheets, but also flowers of jasmine and other plants, dried roots and fruits. The waiter only managed to pour boiling water, and from a very original kettle – with one and a half meter spout! At the same time did not shed a drop. String Bila exactly in a glass.

In teahouses go and families and friendly companies. Sita men sit, young guys and climb tea, leisurely chatting. For us, unfortunately, such a picture is unusual.

While we were sitting at the table, we also offered various services: to pay out, sell some trinkets and even clean the ears. Another day I went to the Chinese restaurant to eat. Brought the menu, there are solid hieroglyphs, and the waiters speak only in Chinese. I had to show your finger on the dishes in the neighboring tables. I ordered rice with meat and green pepper, which turned out to be very sharp, and, of course, Mo-Mo, dumplings with meat meat – Tibetan corporate dish. To top it off, there are no devices in Harchevna, except for sticks, do not give out.

Tibet, at least Lhasa, is not so isolated from the outside world: I was simply shocked by Ecuadorian bananas in the markets, California grapes and Chilean oranges. The explanation is probably that China is the Pacific Power, and the United States, Chile and Ecuador – its neighbors in the region. There is nothing to say that I didn’t even look at the overseas fruit, but I left for local peaches, apricots, apples and pears. I tried juicy watermelons and sweet melons.

From there they come mantra

But enough about the food of bodily. We are waiting for those who are famous for the whole world of Drepung and sulfur monasteries, the lamas of which were famous for their scholarship and achievements in the spirit of the Spirit.

Drepung is outside the city, on the slope of Belesa Mountain. This is a whole city fortress. At one time, more than 10 thousand monks lived here. During the cultural revolution, the monastery had to tight. On one of the walls still preserved the portrait of the Chairman of Mao with the inscription "10 thousand years a great feed!" Now Drepung comes to life. The number of Lam in it reached 600. Nefone the flow of pilgrims who make a disbelief of the disassembly, protecting Dharma – the teachings of the Buddha. Next to the monastery flowing a mountain stream. And he serves Buddhism: turns prayer drums stuffed with mantras.

Drepung’s main shrine – ancient statue of Avalokiteshwara. It is installed in the depths of the altar behind the iron grille. The minister blesses pilgrims with a long pole. First, he is touched by a closet to sculpture, and then concerns Lbov praying. Awarded the sacred touch and I, and immediately felt the tide of the strength that was not completely superfluous. After all, even in order to at least beat Drepung, his statues, a tank icon, frescoes, altari, cells and libraries, required at least 5-6 hours.

Impressive huge monastery cuisine, all smoked, with gigantic boilers and saucepan. You can feed a whole division. And on the streets, the streets are boiled tea, adapting to this solar battery. In the hot season Sun in Tibet Zaga.

In Lhasa, visit to the deities

Monastery surrounds the Osinovaya Grove. Nice to see familiar vegetation in Tibet. In Lhasa a lot of poplar alley. And around the sweat, air is powered by a tart aroma of wormwood. In the famous sulfur monastery, attention attracts a ledge park. For a high fence, continuous noise was heard. It was the impression that relations find out hundreds of people. So it turned out. True, the special relationships found out. I witnessed a religious dispute. Brito-head loses in burgundy and yellow robes argued, vigorously talked, clapped in their hands, defending their point of view on some problem of Buddhist teaching.

In the sulfur monastery was the largest book printing. Now book tradition is restored. I watch the work of the printers, or rather xylographs. The master takes the strip of clean paper and applies it to a blackboard with a knocked text. Then rolls. Mantra is ready. Hence, sacred letters spread throughout Tibet and beyond its limits. I am gratefully accepting a leaf with prayers.

Lhasa – noisy city. Tibetans love not only laugh loudly, but also sing. Here goes down the street quite a solid man and suddenly in all the throat delays a cheerful song. This is not uncommon here. And how to praise their goods the merchants, the speaking of the pronunciation of the poem. Sometimes duet.

Quite often say that old lhasa no longer exists. However, this is an exaggeration. Of course, Lhasa is developing rapidly. Chinese authorities pay tibet with its separatist sentiment increased attention. Each province of PRC is obliged to build some object in Lhasa, be it a hospital, school or factory.

New in Lhasa bizarrely intertwined with the old. That’s really, the city of contrasts. Brass on the streets of nomads with prayer drums, mumble prayers. And immediately fashionable in mini skirts. Relieve lines and men with braids. Pioneers in red ties are in a hurry.

To a wide range of built-in modern buildings, adjoins the old district. Vintage quarters are chatting to the temple of Zhochang and the bazaar Pharkor. Three-four-story houses of traditional Tibetan architecture for 200-300 years. In the old town, narrow streets, toilets are open space at the walls. Neither a man nor a woman’s decisiveness suffer.

Buildings are built out of stone and whitewashed. Facades decorate multi windows, platbands and frames of which are painted blue paint. Very picturesque narrow balconies with flowers. Over the roofs – mandatory dry branches of trees, all rided with multicolored mantra. Through the windows it can be seen that the rooms are painted with frescoes, and the ceilings are covered with bright fabrics.

Yes what to walk. My hotel room "Yak" All decorated with frescoes, including the ceiling. Floral ornament and happy symbols prevails – lotus flowers, umbrella, crown, endless knot. One of the wall frescoes depicted four inseparable friends: elephant, monkey, hare and parrot, standing on each other, like Bremen Musicians from a cartoon. This is the personification of strong friendship.

In the evening I did not lose and went to Potala again. Prayer drums. Does not cease the rustling of bodies molded on earth. Current picks me. In addition to his will, I begin to mumble along with the pilgrims: "Om Mani Padme Hum".

Special world Tibetsev

Having been in Potala, Drepung and Serya, I was sure that nothing in Tibet would not surprise me. And wrong. I understood it, barely hitting the ancient temple of Zhochang. There was a complete feeling that I was transferred to another era, perhaps in the Middle Ages.

Incredible concentration of statues, icon-tank, frescoes. Painting on the walls can be studied by the history of Buddhism and Tibet. The air is thickly saturated with the smell of the Bone Oil. It can be said that the whole Tibet is proper. From centuries-old deliqueties everything is covered with soak.

From the gallery I watch the evening service in the courtyard. The bells are inevibly ringing. Boots in Litavra and Drums. Basic long pipes. In the interruptions between the prayers of Lama, Tibetan tea is refreed to.

Delightful view from the fairy-tale roof of the sanctuary on Potal and the old quarters. Ancient stones Zhochanga to shine polished by the bodies of the extending pilgrims. Peculiar religious gymnastics does not stop for a minute. Tibetans do not get tired to worship Buddha. Their religious zeal does not know borders.

I happened to visit the sacred places of Buddhism in Nepal and India. And everywhere, whether the birthplace of Buddha Lumbini or Boddgayia, where he achieved enlightenment, pilgrims-Tibetans prevail. Drowned, housing, they are with equal stoicism tolerate cold and heat.

No wonder Tibetans created one of the greatest civilizations on the planet comparable to Indian and Chinese. But even now Tibetans are very little. Estimated only 6 million. And in the Tibet itself, 2 million. The rest live in neighboring provinces of China and abroad. After the events of 1959, more than 120 thousand were refuge in India, 20 thousand – in Nepal. Tibetan communities scattered around the world.

In turn, the Chinese move in the huge area of ​​Tibet. My accompanying Zhang, Polinochita semi-gratez, complained that the Chinese had to be hard in high alone Tibet. Military, officials go here. With the first opportunity, they return to their homeland. In Lhasa, the Chinese presence is very tangible, along the way from the airport, it includes trucks with soldiers, military towns. Many people here, including merchants who do not understand the word in Tibetan.

It is unlikely that they understand the Tibetan language of gestures. In Zhochang, saw the elderly Tibetan with turquoise rosary, giving up with the lama, far forth the tongue. So she greeted the monk respectfully. This is an old Tibetan reverence sign.

To keep Tibet, Beijing does a lot to develop this extensive region – both in economic and culturally.

Very impressive just an open museum of history and culture of Tibet. This is a real palace equipped with the latest technology. Hall of typography, tank painting, medicine, masks theater, artwork from bronze and copper, jewelry of gemstones.

Opposite the museum – Norbulinka, summer residence of Dalai Lam. She fully justifies its name "Garden of jewels". Under the canopy of pines, Yves and poplars Norbulitka rest from the stone landscapes of Lhasa. In the park, temples and residences of the Dalai Lama breathing peace and peace. It seems that the owner did not run from here 40 with overnight years ago, and came out five minutes from his chambers in the garden. Dalai Lama is destined to go home? It is clear that the loyal Buddhism of Tibetans still worship their spiritual lord and warmly would welcome his return to Lhasa. But for this it is necessary to divide religion and policies. But how to do it?

On the day of my departure over Lhasa, shed rain. Under the clouds, moisture dated mountain changed color. From the ash-gray they turned into gentle green. Still, Tibet stones are not fruitless. Only on a superficial view of Tibetan mountains seem lifeless. In fact, they are covered with the smallest greenery, breaking through the sun.

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