Back to my blog for a brief post after a long time... Happy HOLI to all!!
Can there be a better day/occasion than Holi (the festival of colors) to write/talk about colors?
Work has got hectic these days. We broke from our insipid routine at Bangalore, nailed down a weekend and made a trip to Coorg and Bylakuppe. Come April/May, the mad rush on account of summer vacations in most tourist sites in India, further bolstered our fervor to complete the visit in month of March itself.
That's a brief prologue leading to my post on Bylakuppe's Buddhist Golden temple, adorned with colors. From here on, let the colors convey it all to you -
Please feel free to access - https://picasaweb.google.com/divya553/Byelkuppe#
I have some problems uploading pictures onto my blog - my blog just refuses to listen to me after a significantly long inert period.
Date of visit: Mar 13, 2010
Place/Location: Bylakuppe Namdroling Monastery, 7-8 km from Kushalanagar town. Kushalnagar is about 220 km away from Bangalore and falls in Mysore district.
Reached by: KSRTC buses ply at very good frequency from Madikeri/Bangalore/Mysore to Kushalanagar. An auto hired for Rs 40 (one-way) assures a safe drop at the golden temple.
More about Bylakuppe: A Tibetan refugee settlement established in the year 1961, consisting of many camps under the names - Dickyi Larsoe and Lugsung Sampduling. The mini, self-sufficient town houses monasteries in tandem with the Nyingma tradition. The temples/monasteries here are considered the second seat of the head monk - His Holiness Penor Rinpoche, whose main stay is the Palyul Monastery in Tibet.
Refresh yourselves:Kushalanagar is a fairly big town, has hotels for stay. Athithi restaurant, near the town bus stand provides good food.
Activities: The monks here form a tightly knit and coy community. Therefore, it is important to contain one's excitement, maintain silence and follow prescribed rules on display boards. One requires about 2 hours to visit the place at leisure.
When we reached at 12.45 pm on Sunday- Mar 13, we attended a prayer meeting. We witnessed a huge congregation of monks, they were performing rituals and chanting hymns, the prayer began before we entered the venue and lasted till we left - 2.45 pm.
When prayers are offered, tourists have to wait at the outer doorway and catch of glimpse of the interiors from there, strict entry restrictions are followed. Their prayer sessions are highly involved, complex with eerie noises made by a chief monk, these noises seemed more like inhalation and exhalation exercises. Dances were performed by men in colorful attire and masks; white clothes were swayed slowly by a monk between these dancing men; huge temple bells were rung and traditional musical instruments - drums and tremendously long pipes were played at regular intervals.
Tagline: The colorful monasteries, encompassed by green lawns, living quarters of monks, hospitals and educational institutions, in this mini town of Bylekuppe, present a different and unique cultural and religious landscape, seen nowhere else in South India.