The Himalayas of India: Ladakh and Dharamsala,
Himachal Pradesh - The Dalai Lama's Temple and Dal Lake
Page 9 of 16
all sat in the shelter of the Dalai Lama's temple as the rain continued
unabated for hours. Some of the locals say that Dharamsala is the
second wettest place in India, after Cherrapunjee.
the Dalai Lama's Temple in Dharamsala.
manuscripts, translated from Pali texts, housed at the Dalai Lama's Temple.
The Tibet Connection had emailed, advising that I leave an offering for
Waylon, and so I did, in front of the statue of Avolokiteshvara (Chenresig,
the Buddha of Compassion).
people, perhaps in part to avoid the downpour, sat in front of the Dalai
Lama's Temple studying Buddhist teachings.
glow of the yak butter lamps in front of the Dalai Lama's Temple.
debates began downstairs at 6:30 pm, and soon the lower courtyard was alive
with the voices of monks debating. The Tibetan Buddhist monks have
developed a unique method of debate, used to promote a deep exchange of
the final point of the closing argument is punctuated by exaggerated
slapping of the hands to signal the end of their point.
courtyard was filled with the cacophony of their voices and the echoes with
was a common sight to see monks using exaggerated gestures and raised voices to
drive make their points known.
other monks would join in the debate, several shouting down the other.
And some got in the other monk's face, using wild facial expressions and
gesticulations in heated debate. This continued for well over an hour
before the monks evaporated. Another traveler, a Frenchman, also
stayed until the end, the two of us enthralled despite not knowing the
debate. I met a Tibetan named Gonpa who told me some of the debates
centered around the philosophical perception of color.
debates over, I walked up the stairs one more time, just to see if anything
was happening. Many monks were reciting prayers, a puja in process,
while sitting in front of the hall where the Dalai Lama gives speeches and
I ended the long day by going to
Gakyi's, wanting a warm, homey atmosphere, eating flag fat noodles with
vegetables and fried garlic, washing it down with a sweet lassi for 65Rs
(US$1.50 - 42 rupees equaled one dollar).
July - after the long day of the Tibetan Library, the hike in Bhagsu, and
the Dalai Lama's temple yesterday, I thought a nice quiet walk to Dal Lake
would feel great. And it did.
the walk up to Dal Lake, across the street from Tibetan Children's Village.
dog holds court in the Tibetan Children's Village on the walk up to Dal
The Himalayas of India: Ladakh and
Dharamsala, Summer 2008
Page 9 of 16
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Contact photographer/musician Ken Lee