i visited boudha 2 days ago, about 5km northeast of kathmandu, hoping to shoot the partial solar eclipse there. the solar eclipse, sad to say, was unspectacular but i was enthralled with the magnificence of the stupa.
boudha is home to a tibetan community numbering about 16000, most of whom fled china in the late 50’s. the area is an important centre of tibetan buddhism in nepal, with locals and foreigners alike visiting the monasteries and the stupa itself, as pictured below.
in the days leading up to losar, the tibetan new year, workers can be seen hauling tins of yellow paint up the side of the hemispherical dome. the paint will then be splayed over the dome, as pictured below, to create a pattern that represents the lotus.
monks, devotees, tourists, and everyone else in between, circling the stupa in a clockwise direction.
as devotees circle the stupa, some of them spin the prayer wheels set into the 147 niches in the outer wall.
scenes of prayer below. note the prayer beads which are used to keep track of the repetitions.
a man crossing underneath a line of prayer flags and not stepping over them – the considerate thing to do if one sees the flags lying on the ground.
butter lamps are lit by devotees to gain merit as well as to aid in meditation, as they help focus the mind. i entered one of the stone enclosures to shoot and nearly melted thanks to the heat.
one more of the stupa for the road.
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