Must-Visit Bodhgaya: The Navel of the World

By | Jun 11, 2017 | Views: 6,766

(By Tsem Rinpoche and Pastor David)

Introduction

Since the time of the Buddha, the Dharma that he taught has spread to many countries beyond India. This has resulted in Buddhism adapting and becoming entrenched in many parts of Asia. Each country that Buddhism has spread to have developed their own unique flavour while retaining the core essence of the Buddha’s intent.

Bodhisattva Maitreya

Bodhisattva Maitreya

Despite superficial differences, all Buddhists look to their teacher and founder, the perfect Buddha Shakyamuni as the source of blessing, teaching and inspiration. Hence, Buddhists from around the world travel to Bodhgaya, the sacred ground where the Buddha gained enlightenment, for pilgrimage. This sacred place is not just the spot at which the Buddha achieved enlightenment but it is also the spot at which future Buddhas will manifest enlightenment. It is the site where, in the future, the bodhisattva Maitreya will achieve full enlightenment, becoming a Buddha. It is for this reason that Buddhists consider Bodhgaya to be ‘the navel of the world’.

Buddhists travel to Bodhgaya to retrace the footsteps that the Buddha took in order to achieve full enlightenment under the Bodhi tree. Every step and action that the Buddha took in order to achieve his goal has imbued the place with tremendous spiritual power. Even before his enlightenment, Prince Siddharta Gautama was already a high-level bodhisattva and that meant every action he took had tremendous blessing.

Therefore, Buddhists travel to Bodhgaya in order to tap into the Buddha’s blessings to purify negative karma and to plant the seeds of enlightenment into our mind streams. These are rare karmic seeds that will ripen in the future when the conditions are right and will allow us to continue on our spiritual path towards enlightenment. On top of that, the seeds planted in our mind streams at Bodhgaya are special because they create a special bond with the future Buddha Maitreya. They create a connection with Maitreya that we are reborn near or amongst his closest disciples, and thereby gain special teachings and blessings from Maitreya directly.

 

Location and Weather

This map show Bodhgaya is situated in the northeastern state of Bihar.

This map show Bodhgaya is situated in the northeastern state of Bihar.

Although Prince Siddhartha Gautama was born in Lumbini, he wandered far from his homeland of Kapilavastu after leaving the palace and renouncing his rich princely life in order to search for the truth as a mendicant. The mendicant Siddhartha had learnt much from the four leading meditation masters of his time and practiced the most severe of ascetic practices. Yet, he was no closer to finding the truth.

One day, Siddhartha came to the realisation that he should pursue the ‘Middle Path’ and after regaining his health, he sought a new spot for his meditations. His wandering brought him to what is known today as Bodhgaya. Bodhgaya today is a small bustling village about ten kilometres south of the city of Gaya in the Indian state of Bihar. It is situated west of the Niranjana River, which is a tributary of the larger Ganges River.

The state of Bihar lies in the north-eastern part of the Indian subcontinent and borders with Nepal. Due to its location, the weather is subtropical with hot sunny skies during the summer months between April to mid-June; cool weather through the winter months of December to January; and the famous Indian monsoon season between June to September.

 

Tracing Siddhartha’s Footsteps

An ancient carving of Prince Siddhartha.

An ancient carving of Prince Siddhartha.

Prince Siddhartha was born in Lumbini just outside of the ancient kingdom of Kapilavastu amidst auspicious signs and a prophecy by a sage called Asita that he would either become a great king or upon encountering human suffering, would become a universal teacher. Even with the king’s great effort to shield his son, Prince Siddhartha still came face-to-face with human suffering one day while on an excursion out of the palace walls. He beheld what would become known as the Four Sights – an old man, a diseased man, a funerary procession carrying a corpse followed by mourners, and a saintly and peaceful mendicant.

The young prince was greatly disturbed by what he saw and he realised that everyone would have to experience the same suffering. He finally resolved to seek an answer to suffering itself and in order to do that, he had to leave the palace and with it, he left behind his family, luxuries and a promising future as a prince and heir to the throne. Upon leaving the palace walls, he cut his hair, wore the robes of a mendicant and left in search for the truth. He met with four leading teachers of his time, who taught him meditation and he quickly surpassed them but he was no closer to the truth.

While engaging in severe ascetic practices for six years in Uruvela (modern day Bodhgaya), Siddhartha realised that he had to pursue a different path between the two extremes of self-indulgence and self-mortification, which later became known as the ‘Middle Way’. So, he accepted an offering of milk and rice from a cowherd by the name of Sujata and slowly regained his strength. The five mendicants who were his companions thought that he had abandoned his practice and left him. He then began to look for a conducive place for practice and found his way to Uruvela and chose a spot under a Pipal tree (known today as the Bodhi tree) and sat down to meditate. He vowed never to arise until he had attained his final goal at that very spot.

It is believed that Siddhartha meditated for 49 days under that tree. The night before his enlightenment was divided into three stages called the three watches of the night. During the first watch of the night he gained a complete vision of all his past lives. During the second watch of the night he perceived how all beings die and are reborn according to their karma and plane of existence. During the third watch he realised the complete cessation of craving and suffering. Therefore, his mind was completely liberated and he had thus attained full enlightenment.

Old Mongolian thangka that depicts the Buddha being attacked by the forces of Mara.

Old Mongolian thangka that depicts the Buddha being attacked by the forces of Mara.

It was just before achieving enlightenment that Mara, believed to be the embodiment of mankind’s ego arose, and sent his daughters of unearthly beauty to distract the Buddha but they failed. The second time, Mara sent his army of demons to attack the Buddha but Mara failed again. The third time, Mara claimed that the seat of enlightenment rightfully belonged to him and not to the mortal Siddhartha. Mara challenged Siddhartha, “who will speak for you?” It was then that Siddhartha reached out his right hand to touch the earth, and the earth itself spoke: “I will bear witness!” Mara was utterly defeated and he disappeared. Thus, Prince Siddhartha had achieved complete and perfect enlightenment. He was henceforth known as the Buddha, the Awakened One.

 

Local Language and Cuisine

 

Language

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Hindi, Maithili, and Urdu are the official languages of the state of Bihar. On the other hand, the majority of the people speak one of several Bihari languages, like Bhojpuri or Magadhi. Interestingly, Bihari languages were once mistakenly thought to be dialects of Hindi. However, more recently, linguists have examined and found these languages to be descendants of the ancient Magadha kingdom (Magadhi Prakrit), along with Bengali, Assamese, and Oriya.

It is not an easy task to ascertain the number of people who speak Bihari languages due to unreliable methods of gathering numbers. Naturally, most educated urban speakers would consider Hindi as their main language because it is what they use officially in the media and commerce. Despite the large number of speakers of Bihari languages, these languages have not been constitutionally recognised in India, the only exception being Maithili, which is recognised under the Eighth Schedule.

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Cuisine

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The staple food of the northern Bihari state is a dish composed of roti, dhal,
chawal, sabzi, and achar. This dish is cooked with lentils, wheat flour, rice, vegetables, and pickle. This dish is cooked traditional using mustard oil. Usually, Bihari people have a boiled rice-based meal for lunch and a roti-based meal for dinner and breakfast. On the other hand, khichdi is a broth made of rice and lentils seasoned with spices and served with several other dishes and this constitutes the mid-day meal for most Hindu Biharis on Saturdays. The favourite dish among Biharis is litti-chokha. Litti is made up of sattu, which is flour made from a mixture of ground pulses and cereals, while chokha is made of smashed potatoes, tomatoes and eggplant.

Bihar traditionally offers a large variety of sweet delicacies and they are mostly dry, unlike those from Bengal. Bihari sweets include chen murki, kala jamun, kesaria peda, khaja, khurma, pua & mal, pua, thekua, murabba and tilkut. Many of these sweet foods actually originate in towns in the vicinity of Patna. On the other hand, salted snacks and savouries popular in Bihar include litti, makhana and sattu. The foods of eastern Uttar Pradesh and western Bihar were strongly influenced by Mughlai cuisine due to historical connections. Consequently, Bhojpuri cuisine arose with Bihari flavour and thus reflects Bihar as a unique confluence of culinary cultures.

Bihari delicacy called Pitti Chokra.

Bihari delicacy called Pitti Chokra.

 

20 Great Places to Visit in Bodhgaya

 

1. Mahabodhi Stupa and Bodhi Tree

The Magnificent Mahabodhi Stupa.

The Magnificent Mahabodhi Stupa.

The ancient Mahabodhi Temple commemorates the Bodhimanda, or the place of enlightenment, of Buddha Shakyamuni. The temple is built traditionally facing east and features a 150-foot spire above the spot where the original Bodhi tree, under which the Buddha became fully enlightened, was located.

The inner sanctum of the temple houses a magnificent 10th century, two-meter tall gilded image of the seated Buddha. This statue was carved out of a black stone by artisans of the Pala kingdoms of Bengal. The Buddha is seen seated in the bhumisparsha mudra or the ‘earth touching’ posture. It is said that the golden Buddha image within the Mahabodhi temple complex was sculpted in the exact likeness of the Buddha himself. Legend has it that when the temple was built there were no worthy statues of the Buddha to be found. One day, a sculptor arrived from afar and declared that he would sculpt a statue, but that he would require scented clay, a lamp and that the door to the inner sanctum not be opened for six months. However, the door was opened a few days ahead of schedule.

Ancient main image of Buddha Shakyamuni within the Mahabodhi Stupa.

Ancient main image of Buddha Shakyamuni within the Mahabodhi Stupa.

They found a statue of great beauty, perfect in every detail except for a small part on the breast that was left unfinished. Later, a monk who slept in the sanctum had a dream in which the bodhisattva Maitreya appeared and revealed that he was the one who carved the statue. According to another source, this statue was commissioned 60 years after the Buddha’s parinirvana by one of Lord Buddha’s female disciples who actually beheld the golden face of the Buddha himself. The statue is actually made of a black stone but has since been covered with a layer of gold, which was sponsored by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Hence, this statue is said to be the closest resemblance with what Lord Buddha looked like.

Pilgrims offer robes, which the temple caretaker carefully offers onto the statue itself.

Pilgrims offer robes, which the temple caretaker carefully offers onto the statue itself.

It is believed that Emperor Ashoka visited Bodhgaya and built the Mahabodhi Vihara Temple about 280 years after the enlightenment of the Buddha. However, construction of the temple only completed in the 7th century CE during the reign of the Gupta kings. Incredibly, four of the original stone railings surrounding the temple date back to the early Shunga period (184–72 BCE) survive to this day amongst later replicas. Since then, the temple has undergone several restoration and repair works, aided by the especially devout Burmese. In 1883, a thorough and scientific restoration of the temple was completed under the supervision of the British Archaeologist Sir A. Cunningham, J.D.M. Beglar and the Indian Archaeologist Dr. Rajendra Lal Mitra. Finally in 1956, on the occasion of 2,500th Buddha Jayanti celebrations, the Government of India performed some repair works and enlarged the compound of the Mahabodhi Vihara.

The Bodhi tree which the Buddha sat under until he gained full enlightenment was known as Sri Maha Bodhi. However, the current 80-feet tall tree is not the original tree from the Buddha’s time but a descendant of that tree. A sapling of the original tree was carried by Emperor Ashoka’s daughter, Sanghamitta to Sri Lanka.

The descendant of the original Bodhi tree that the Buddha sat under to become enlightened.

The descendant of the original Bodhi tree that the Buddha sat under to become enlightened.

King Ashoka, the great Indian Emperor who ruled from 269 to 232 BCE, about 200 years after Buddha’s parinirvana, paid special attention to the original sacred Bodhi tree. His wife, Tissarakkha, in a jealous rage destroyed the Bodhi Tree. Fortunately, a cutting from the tree that grew in Sri Lanka from the sapling that Sanghamitta took with her, was replanted in Bodh Gaya when the original tree died. Under this tree is a red sandstone slab known as the Vajrasana, the diamond throne, believed to mark the spot of Buddha’s enlightenment. This red sandstone slab was originally placed there by King Ashoka.

Bags, MP3 players and phones with cameras are advised to be kept in the lockers 50 meters to the west of the entrance. Ever since bombs exploded within the complex in 2013, security has been extra tight.

Map of Bodhgaya that marks the location of the Mahabodhi Stupa along with other places of interests.

Map of Bodhgaya that marks the location of the Mahabodhi Stupa along with other places of interests.

Address:
Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Phone: +91 631 220 0735
Website: http://www.mahabodhi.com
Opening Hours: 5:00 am – 9:00 pm

Daily Routine of the Mahabodhi Temple:

5:00AM Opening of the Mahabodhi Temple
5:30 am to 6:00 am Sutra Chanting and Meditation
10:00 am Offering of Kheer (rice pudding made of cooked rice, milk and sugar)
6:00 pm to 7:00 pm Sutra Chanting and Meditation
9:00 pm Closing of the Mahabodhi Temple

Associated fees:

Camera:

Digital Camera / Camera Rs. 100/- per day
Handy Video Camera Rs. 300/- per day
Video Camera Rs. 500/- per day

BUTTER LAMP OFFERING:

Small Lamp Rs. 2/- each
Medium Lamp Rs. 4/- each
Large Lamp Rs. 10/- each

(Butter Lamps House situated in the south side of the Temple premises.)

 

2. Animeshlochan Chaitya

The Animeshlochan Chaitya shrine overlooks the Mahabodhi stupa.

The Animeshlochan Chaitya shrine overlooks the Mahabodhi stupa.

During the second week after his enlightenment, the Buddha spent his time sitting facing the Bodhi tree, meditating deeply upon it in gratitude. It is said that the Buddha stared at the tree without blinking, and so the tree became known as animeshlochan or ‘unblinking’. A prayer hall or chaitya has since been built upon the spot.

 

3. Ratnachakrama

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Ratnachakrama literally means ‘jeweled walk’ and this pathway is marked by a raised platform with lotus designs demarcating the Buddha’s steps that he took during the third week after his enlightenment. It is said that he paced 18 steps back and forth near the Bodhi tree, and that lotus sprang up under his feet wherever he stepped. Today, the Ratnachakrama lies along the northern Temple wall.

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4. Ratnaghar Chaitya

The gates to the Ratnaghar Chaitya shrine.

The gates to the Ratnaghar Chaitya shrine.

This shrine lies northwest of the Temple and marks the location where Buddha spent the fourth week after his enlightenment in meditation. It was here that he received a vision of his future mission, and the higher aspect of wisdom, the Abhidharma. It is said that blue, yellow, red, white and orange lights emanated from the Buddha as he meditated. These colours have subsequently used on the Buddhist flag.

Ancient Buddha images enshrined within the Ratnaghar Chaitya.

Ancient Buddha images enshrined within the Ratnaghar Chaitya.

 

5. Ajapala Nigrodh

The pillar on the left of the signage marks the Ajapala Nigrodh.

The pillar on the left of the signage marks the Ajapala Nigrodh.

This is a pillar marking the spot of Buddha’s fifth week of meditation. Originally under a Banyan tree, the Buddha sat and counselled some Brahmins. He taught them that one is true Brahmin by virtue of karma, or one’s actions, rather than one’s birth.

 

6. Rajyatana Tree

The tree next to the sign marks the location of the old Rajyatana Tree.

The tree next to the sign marks the location of the old Rajyatana Tree.

The Buddha spent his seventh week meditating under this tree and it is said that he gained his first two lay disciples here. They were merchants from Burma who had come and offered him his first meal following his seven weeks of meditation. This tree is originally located near to the temple, on its southeast side.

 

7. Muchalinda Pond

The statue of the Buddha protected by the hood of the Naga commemorates the event of the sixth week.

The statue of the Buddha protected by the hood of the Naga commemorates the event of the sixth week.

Buddha spent his sixth week of meditation here. There was a great shower of rain, and the Naga king, Muchalinda sheltered the Buddha by winding his coils seven times round the Buddha’s body and holding his hood over the Buddha’s head.

 

8. Thai Monastery

The beautiful exterior of the Thai Temple.

The beautiful exterior of the Thai Temple.

The Thai Monarch at the request of the Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru built this Thai Temple at Bodh Gaya in 1956 in order to strengthen relations between the two countries. This temple is unique for being the only Thai temple in India as it perfectly exemplifies the beauty of Thai architecture with its sloping and curved roof. The temple is situated facing the main road and is next to the tourist bungalow.

The temple enshrines an exquisitely carved bronze statue of Lord Buddha. The temple is quiet and serene as you walk into the main prayer hall. There is also a recently built 25-meter high statue of the Buddha in the garden near the Thai Temple.

Address: Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India

The elegant shrine to the Buddha within the Thai temple.

The elegant shrine to the Buddha within the Thai temple.

 

9. Daijokyo Buddhist Temple & 80-foot Buddha Statue

Japanese Daijokyo Buddhist Temple exterior.

Japanese Daijokyo Buddhist Temple exterior.

The Daijokyo Buddhist Temple was built on a 2-acre piece of land allocated by the Government of Bihar. This temple was inaugurated on February 13, 1983 by the then President of India, His Excellency Gyani Zail Singh. The temple is a double-storey concrete building with a three-storey tall pagoda on top that was built in Japanese style. The Buddha statue enshrined within the temple is in the meditation posture, is made of bronze, and was brought over from Japan.

The shrine with the Daijokyo Buddhist Temple.

The shrine with the Daijokyo Buddhist Temple.

On the other hand, the inauguration and consecration of the Great Buddha Statue took place on November 18, 1989. The consecration ceremony was graced with the presence of the 14th Dalai Lama, who consecrated the 25-meter statue, the first large outdoor Buddha ever built in the history of India. The statue is now a symbol of the holy place Bodhgaya alongside the Mahabodhi Temple, which is a World Heritage site, and enjoys constant visits by pilgrims from all over the world. Amongst the local people it is nicknamed ‘the 80-foot (25-meter) Buddha Statue.’

The great Buddha Statue within the compounds of the Daijokyo Temple.

The great Buddha Statue within the compounds of the Daijokyo Temple.

Surrounding the Great Buddha Statue are smaller statues of his ten great disciples on either side, as if protecting and following him. The first to be unveiled and consecrated were Sariputra and Maudgalyayana in November 1993. Then, the other statues of the other eight great disciples, namely Mahakasyapa, Subhuti, Purna Maitrayani-putra, Mahakatyayana, Anuruddha, Upali, Rahula, and Ananda were consecrated in March 1996. The ten statues are made of sandstone from Chunar, near Varanasi, which is the same material as was used for the Great Buddha Statue.

Address: Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Phone: +91 631 220 0747
Opening hours: 7 am to 12 pm, 2 pm to 6 pm (to 5:30 pm in winter)

 

10. Royal Bhutanese Monastery

The beautiful exterior of the Royal Bhutanese Monastery.

The beautiful exterior of the Royal Bhutanese Monastery.

The king of Bhutan built the Royal Bhutan Monastery dedicated to Lord Buddha, Guru Rinpoche and 4-armed Chenrezig. Intricate clay carvings are seen on the interior walls of the monastery that depict different aspects of the Buddha’s life story.

Address: Birla Road, Bodhgaya
Opening hours: 7:00 am to 7:00 pm

The colorful shrine to the Buddha Shakyamuni, Guru Rinpoche and Chenrezig within the Royal Bhutanese Temple.

The colorful shrine to the Buddha Shakyamuni, Guru Rinpoche and Chenrezig within the Royal Bhutanese Temple.

 

11. Japanese temple (Indosan Nippon)

The simple and dignified exterior of the Japanese Indosan Nippon temple.

The simple and dignified exterior of the Japanese Indosan Nippon temple.

Located at Temple Road. Activities include daily meditation at 6AM and 5PM.This is another outstanding example of Japanese temple architecture. It temple was built in 1972 with the assistance of the international Buddhist community. The structure of this temple was originally carved out of wood and it is meant to look like a traditional Japanese shrine. It also showcases traditional Japanese paintings that tell the story of Buddha Shakyamuni’s life.

Address: Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Opening hours: 5:00 am-12:00 pm, 2:00 pm-6:00 pm

Main shrine to the Buddha within the Indosan Nippon Temple .

Main shrine to the Buddha within the Indosan Nippon Temple .

 

12. Taiwanese Temple (World Chonghwa Buddhist Sangha)

The exterior of the Taiwanese Buddhist Temple .

The exterior of the Taiwanese Buddhist Temple.

This temple was built in the Chinese architectural style by the Taiwanese government and Buddhist monks. Although it is a very small structure, it is worth visiting. Like other temples, it is dedicated to Lord Buddha. The monastery is located near the Mahabodhi temple complex.

Address: Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Phone: (0631) 2200 503/ 673

 

13. Archaeological Museum

Entrance to the Archaeological Museum of Bodhgaya.

Entrance to the Archaeological Museum of Bodhgaya.

The museum is closed on Fridays, and has an entrance fee of Rs.10 (for foreigners and locals alike). It possesses a small but interesting selection of Buddhist and Hindu artefacts from Bodhgaya and other nearby excavation sites. Photography is not allowed.

Address: Gaya Center, Bodh Gaya 824231, India
Phone: 0631-2200739
Opening hours: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Entrance fee: Rs. 10/- per head (Children up to 15 years free)

Original artifacts uncovered within the Mahabodhi Temple sites.

Original artifacts uncovered within the Mahabodhi Temple sites.

 

14. Mahabodhi Temple Complex Bookstore

Located inside Mahabodhi temple complex entrance. It has a very wide selection of books on Buddhism, Buddhist culture, and the Mahabodhi temple. All books are new and sold at local prices.

Address: Mahabodhi Temple, Bodh Gaya, Bihar
Opening hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (Daily)

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15. Kundan Bazar Book/Clothing/Gift Shop

Located on the main road near Embassy Hotel, Kundan Bazar is a great little shop with a good selection of clothing, gifts, and books. Their prices are not exorbitant, but do bargain a little.

Address: Kundan Bazar Guest House, Bhagalpur Village, Bodh Gaya Road
Opening hours: 7:00 am to 8:00 pm (Daily)
Phone: +91 631 220 0049

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16. Bodhi Tree Educational Foundation

This is a volunteering organisation located in a village 5 kilometres out of the city. They will provide accommodation, food and other activities around the Gaya and Bodhgaya areas.

Email: peace_answer@rediffmail.com
Website: www.BodhiTreeEducationalFoundation.org

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17. Tibet Om Cafe

Excellent pastries, great and wholesome Tibetan food too. This is a popular destination for tourists.

Address: Near Birladrhamsala, Bodh Gaya 824231, India
Phone: +91 72779 40832
Opening hours: 7:00 am to 9:00 pm (Daily)

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18. Be Happy Cafe

(In front of the Vietnamese temple, just follow the signs).
A small cafe ran by a wonderful Canadian women. The cafe specializes in thin crust pizzas, Italian pastas, sandwiches in thick bread, freshly made cakes, homemade granola for breakfast and a variety of coffees.

Address:
In front of Vietnamese Temple
Kalachakra Ground, Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Phone: +91 87971 18390
Opening hours: 8:00 am to 8:30 pm

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19. Bowl of Compassion Cafe

Bodhgaya (Opposite the police station).
It is a relatively new restaurant serving delicious Indian and international cuisine, with connections to the nearby Bowl of Compassion NGO. Patrons can choose special “Compassion meals”, where the extra money goes towards helping the poor of the Tikha Bigha Village. Volunteers are welcome.

Address: Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India
Phone: +91 99312 77814
Website: https://bowlofcompassion.org
Opening hours: 10:00 am to 11:00 pm

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20. The Olive

(near Hotel Sujata on Buddha Road, on same side).
Impeccably clean, with glass topped tables, and filtered water. Excellent pasta dishes include spaghetti, fusilli, and penne. Other favourites include boiled vegetables, aloo gobi, and masala chai.

Address: Near Hotel Sujata, Gaya, India

 

How To Get There

Gaya International Airport – the gateway for most international travellers to Bodhgaya.

Gaya International Airport – the gateway for most international travellers to Bodhgaya.

From overseas, the nearest international airport is at Gaya, which is 17 kilometres away. Druk Air flies from Bangkok once a week, and Thai Airways flies to Gaya daily. Indian Airlines flies from Kolkata on Fridays at 10am and returns back on Mondays from Gaya at around 3pm. Air India flies from New Delhi via Varanasi every day and Indigo also flies from New Delhi as well.

Alternatively, you may take a flight to Patna Airport, which is 110 kilometres away and take a train or a taxi to Bodh Gaya. This is more feasible for most travellers as Patna has direct and daily flights to Delhi, Kolkata, and Mumbai.

Bangkok can be used as a hub to change flights to Kolkata, as there are many daily flights between the two cities, and because there are four to five daily flights from Kolkata to Patna.

For those travelling from South East Asia the best suited route is from Bangkok to Kolkata, then from Kolkata to Patna. Transfers between Patna Airport and Bodhgaya are available through Punpun Trails (a local travel agent) throughout the year and can be booked online.

 

Where to stay

  • Burmese Vihara, Gaya Road. The Vihara offerings very basic accommodation and exists mainly to cater to groups of Burmese pilgrims, but there are often rooms available for others too. Rules are posted prominently. Food service is only for those arriving in groups and by prior arrangement.
  • Kundan Bazar Guest House, Bhagalpur Village (Near Old Vietnam Temple), +91 631 220 0049 (reservations@kundanbazar.com), This guest house offers single rooms to full-service apartments, bike rentals, internet cafe, snooker bar, self-service kitchen, laundry facility, tour packages, and more.
  • Mahabodhi Society, GDD, +91 631 220 0742. There are both private rooms and dorms available here.
  • Rainbow Guesthouse, next to Burmese Vihara on Gaya Road. Offers basic rooms, which can be cleaned more thoroughly on request, and has friendly and reliable staff.
  • Rahul Guesthouse, (Just further north up the road 100 metres from Deer park and the Bodhi tree there’s a sports oval, Rahul’s and many other guest houses are just on the other side of the oval. Walk along the road that goes around the oval and you’ll see it.). It offers amazingly clean rooms, with medium customer service. It’s surrounded by about four other guest houses, so it’s a good spot to head towards and shop around. Single rooms cost roughly Rs 350.
  • Sakya Monastery Guesthouse, Mastipur Village (Near Bhutan Monastery), +91 631 220 0770. Clean, simple, friendly, peaceful and calm environment.
  • Siddhartha Vihar, Bihar Tourist Complex, +91 631 220 0445. Simple, but comfortable rooms.
  • Hotel Sujata, Buddha Marg, +91 631 220 0481/220 0761/220 0011 (htsujata@vsnl.com / info@sujatahotel.com, fax: +91 631 220 0511). Offers a clean environment and good restaurant.
  • Welcome Guest House, is a 2 mins walk from Mahabodhi Temple (opp-jayprakash prak), +91 631 220 0377 (welcomeguest_house@yahoo.co.in) Welcome Guest House offers cheap and pleasant rooms in the centre of town.
  • Om Soni Family Guesthouse, on a little street near the Japanese Temple, +91 997 345 4906. A monk at the Japanese monastery recommend this place because he has known the owner, Vijay Kumar, since he was a little boy. Vijay is a really nice guy and the bathrooms are clean, though the rooms a bit small. There is no Wi-Fi, but for the price, it is a good deal in town. Ask people around the Japanese temple if you can’t find it. You have to walk by the temple and then make a left one or two streets past the woodcarvers shop. It is roughly Rs. 250-300 rupees for a double.
  • Hotel Buddha International, near the Japanese Temple, Bodhgaya, + 631 220 0506. (hotel.b.int@gmail.com) This is a budgeted hotel in Bodhgaya, there are 31 air conditioned rooms with single & double occupancy. Room facilities include features like attached bath, running hot and cold water, internet browsing, refrigerators, CCTV, direct dial facility, etc. Other facilities include a multi cuisine restaurant, henna designing, swimming pool, Ayurveda centre, travel desk, doctor on call, free parking, etc.
  • Suma House, Off Saxena Rd (Near Root Institute), +91 898 729 1171. This delightful family are genuinely caring hosts. The building is situated out of town amid the quiet of fields and trees. The rooms are large as are the bathrooms. It has been recently built and is clean and fresh. Air conditioning is available, with 24-hour hot water, Wi-Fi and home cooked meals on request. The family is very inclusive and also run a small NGO teaching disadvantaged children and adolescents in the guesthouse. A truly delightful place to stay from around Rs 600-1500.

 

Travel books on Bodhgaya

Get the most out of your visit to Bodhgaya. Before you arrive, read up on some travel books to help plan your trip and make your journey more enjoyable. Two of the most popular travel books on Bodhgaya include:

Bodh041 Walking with the Buddha – Buddhist Pilgrimages in India

This is an illustrated guide to the various sacred Buddhist sites (including Bodhgaya) throughout India, following a time-honoured pilgrimage circuit. This book is packed with an abundance of information, ranging from ancient stories of the Buddha’s life to archaeological facts on the various sacred sites. This book has over 200 photos and maps detailing every aspect of the sites, from its architectural heritage to its associated literary wealth that reveals Lord Buddha’s contribution to the world.

Bodh042 Meeting the Buddha: On Pilgrimage in Buddhist India
Author: Molly Emma AitkenThis book takes you on a literary tour from E.M. Forster to Peter Matthiessen and Allen Ginsberg. These are some of the most celebrated writers who have travelled to the various sacred Buddhist sites of India in search of spiritual enlightenment. They have written of their personal experiences on their journeys, and for the first time, these works have been compiled into this single volume to inspire the intrepid pilgrim.

For more interesting information:

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Pastor David Lai
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About Pastor David Lai

David is a lay Buddhist pastor of Kechara and a longtime student of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche. Initially a reluctant writer, he now finds himself writing for a living and has published four books including his autobiography, There's No Way But Up and Conversations in Love.

David is a lover of Buddhist art and whenever he can, he shares his knowledge of the Dharma with everyone, giving frequent teachings and writing on his blog www.davidlai.me.
Pastor David Lai
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11 Responses to Must-Visit Bodhgaya: The Navel of the World

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  1. wan wai meng on Sep 3, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    Bodghaya is a spiritual pureland and one can be exposed to all forms of Buddhism and traditions, and also engage in making offerings all over. Any Buddhist would like to be associated to this location, that the next Buddha, Maitreya will also manifest at. Thank you for this guide of Bodghaya.

  2. Stella Cheang on Jul 15, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    I have always wanted to make pilgrimage trips to places revolving Buddha’s life; especially his birth place – Lumbini, the place where he attained enlightenment – Bodhgaya, where he first turned the wheel of Dharma – Sarnath, and where he entered clear light – Kusinara. The write up by Pastor David provides intricate details and information that are very useful to plan for the trip. It will really be nice to go with like minded friends, where everyone can engage in some prayers in the holy place if possible, to invoke upon the magnificent blessing by the Buddha.

  3. Stella Cheang on Jun 30, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    It is both inspiring and eye-opening to read this informative article by Pastor David. It is not exaggerating to say that Bodhgaya is the navel of the world because Bodhgaya is the place where Buddha gained enlightenment 2,500 years ago. Buddhism had since then spread and evolved into the mainstream of many nations, culturally and religiously. It is evident how Buddhism took shape by the uniqueness of Buddhist temple from Thailand, Japan, Bhutan and etc which were built in Bodhgaya. For me, I will not miss the ancient stories of Buddha’s life through tracing the archaeological facts in various sacred sites. I wish that I will be able to visit Bodhgaya one day.

  4. Anne Ong on Jun 25, 2017 at 3:56 pm

    Testing..

  5. Anne Ong on Jun 25, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    Thank you Pastor David for this very interesting article on Bodhgaya.And beautiful pictures and places. I always feel happy to be able to read and see these places because I’m unable to travel and visit. I didn’t know the Bodhi tree is not the original tree. Have been wondering about it already how it could live for so long. Nice to know anyway! Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor David once again. _/\_

  6. Jason on Jun 23, 2017 at 9:10 pm

    This is very interesting and informative article to pilgrims who plan to do pilgrimage to India.As we can see that Bodhgaya itself already have 20 sites to visit for pilgrimage purpose. As I remember, Rinpoche did ask us must pay visit a huge Japan architecture Buddha in Daijokyo Temple.This is the only Japanese temple in Bodhgaya. I really wish i can visit Bodhgaya soon to increase my spiritual knowledge and can benefit others and myself.
    Thanks Pastor David for such details information.

    Jason

  7. Fong on Jun 12, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    Beautiful article. Such a sacred place for Buddhists and would really be good to be able to make this pilgrimage to connect with a holy and energy.

    Thank you, Pastor David for another wonderful piece of information on more than 1 level.

  8. Samfoonheei on Jun 12, 2017 at 7:53 pm

    Beautiful and meaningful place to visit Bodhgaya for every Buddhist.Bodh Gaya is a religious site and place of pilgrimage associated.
    Buddhists travel there to retrace the footsteps Buddha and where Buddha achieved full enlightenment under the Bodhi tree. I do hope i could there some day.Amazing there are about 20 great interesting place to Visit in Bodhgaya itself.The history of each place are interesting as well.Bodhgaya is the most revered of all Buddhist sacred sites.
    Thank you Pastor David Lai sharing this beautiful post with beautiful pictures and details to make the trip there easier.

  9. Lin Mun on Jun 12, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    Thank you Pastor David for this interesting article about Bodhgaya, the place where Buddha Syakyamuni gained enlightenment. The most interesting part is having different temples built by the Japanese, Taiwanese, Thais and Burmese. The diversity of Buddhism in Bodhgaya itself. I really wish to have the opportunity to visit these holy places.

  10. Datuk May on Jun 12, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    Thank you, Pastor David for this very educational account of Shakyamuni Buddha, the essence of His teaching which had evolved since 2,600 years ago. Evolved to accommodate cultural and traditional practices in the different parts of the world but never changed on the ultimate 4 Noble truths of suffering and the 8 fold path to cessation of suffering in Samsara. The Dharma that had lasted through times and that which has proven to be faultless and perfect.

    What impacted me the most is that even in this holiest place in the Universe, the navel of the world, it so inclusive that different types of temples are built to exhibit the differences in structure and still representing the pure Dharma. This inclusiveness of temples built by Burmese, Tibetan, Bhutanese, Japanese, Chinese and Thais with their different styles of architecture indicates the very universal acceptance of Buddhism of diversity upon the similar foundation of the essence of Buddhism.

    I have enjoyed this article tremendously and thank you Rinpoche and Pastor David. Knowledge is the foundation of faith.

  11. Choong on Jun 11, 2017 at 11:01 pm

    This is the first time that I’ve looked at a map with the location of Bodhgaya. It is so close to present day Bangladesh and Burma.

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  • Lin Mun
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 10:10 PM
    Rejoice for Jie that he can now speaks. All appreciation to the kindness of Guru, Tsem Rinpoche for blessing him and all the children. Besides, I believe it is because Chef Au has been working as a vegetarian chef and retrained himself from meat that have accumulated the merits to help his son. A wonderful miracle story to share to all. Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Seng Piow for sharing this story.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/behind-the-scenes/miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-4.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:49 PM
    First time coming across this game, sound interesting and challenging with difficult questions. Its through the way we answering will some how reveal individual’s behaviour and personality. Rinpoche is able to see the weaker and stronger side of us individually. It is a game of fun and laughter, learning as well even though it reveals each psyche behaviour .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/tales-with-my-lama-the-famous-pick-game
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:47 PM
    Dorje Shugden’s connection with the Sakya School began hundreds of years ago. The truth is Dorje Shugden was first practiced within the great Sakya tradition where Dorje Shugden was first enthroned as an enlightened Dharma Protector before becoming a widespread protector practice within the Gelug tradition. Many Sakya throne holders and many great lamas had practiced Dorje Shugden and proliferated the practice. Even though Sakya and Gelug are from a different schools and traditions the core teachings in Buddhism is the same. We are all connected to each other though the teachings comes from a different tradition. Living in a way that embraces respect, and tolerance, without violence, physically, mentally and spiritually. We should practice the Buddha Dharma, the benefits will be immeasurable, support the Guru and to benefit all sentient beings .
    (What we all want is peace, both inside and around us, for ourselves and for others.)….quoted.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/growing-up-with-rinpoche-we-are-all-connected
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:45 PM
    Wow…… incredible experiences with Rinpoche. I could imagine the joy of witnessing and feeling the powerful energy at that time. We won’nt see this happening often. Reading this article , I understand much better now. Wow….. that’s a miraculous picture , seeing a streaming of lights out from Rinpoche , that was after looking at the photo taken earlier. I am fortunate to see and first time coming across picture of lighting phenomena. Hence visualization in our prayers is very important whether we can see or not do not matter as long as we trust and have faith in our guru in the practice.
    (To keep our Samaya clean with our teacher, we will always see our teacher and Buddha as one.)…. I will keep in mind.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Joy Kam for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/rinpoche-through-my-eyes-invoking-the-buddhas-to-come-forth
  • Yee Yin
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:26 PM
    UFO is another interesting paranormal subject. There were many sighting reports on UFOs all around the world. It is not an isolated report. The universe is so big, there are still many things we have not explored. Therefore, there is a very high possibility there are UFOs out there.

    The fact that we are not able to encounter one face to face could mean that they are much more advanced and intelligent than human beings. They do not want to have direct connection with human beings because they know we will keep them in captivity and hurt them.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/second-ufo-sighting-baffles-china-malaysia.html
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:57 PM
    Ganden Sumtseling or Songzanlin or Guihua Monastery is also known as “Little Potala Palace”. Sumtseling Monastery is located just outside the city of Zhongdian (later renamed to Shangri-la in 2001). It is the largest Buddhist monastery in Yunnan province. Established by the Great Fifth Dalai Lama in 1679, the monastery was built during the rule of Qing Dynasty Emperor Kangxi, who fully patronized the development of the monastery. One of the most special features of the monastery is its blending of Tibetan and Chinese-style architecture.

    Read more about this monastery at https://bit.ly/2xiTMCC
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:52 PM
    Archaeologists have come across a vast network of underwater ruins making up the ancient Roman city once known as Neapolis, which was largely washed away by a powerful tsunami around 1,700 years ago.

    Read more this at https://bit.ly/2ZNWVXi
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:47 PM
    He is known as the ‘guardian of Fukushima’s animals’ because of the work he does to feed the animals left behind by people in their rush to evacuate the government’s 12.5-mile exclusion zone. He is aware of the radiation he is subject to on a daily basis, but says that he “refuses to worry about it.” He does take steps, however, by only eating food imported into the zone.

    See more about his work https://bit.ly/2IQlI76
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:50 AM
    Over the last decades , China have since built more, huge impressive mega statues around the Chinese landscape. It seem these mega-statues are even more stunning than its towering skyscrapers and indeed very impressive. China is a great Buddhist land, with Buddha statues of all sizes rising up through history. And some of which are among the largest or tallest in the world. China has a long history of Buddhist art and sculpture. Through out history China been a great Buddhist land had built many awe-inspiring, Buddha statues, from been the highest to the largest statues in the world. I wish I could visit and see those huge Buddhist statues in future.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing with beautiful pictures of those huge statues.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/chinas-huge-buddha-statues.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:48 AM
    China is a vast country with many huge statues been built over the centuries. Having a long history of Buddhism, the statues been built with ancient architectures ,art and sculpture of various sizes . Some of those seem to be the world largest and tallest . Amazing to look at those beautiful statues been rich in their culture for thousands of years. They are built all over China, every province there are at least one or two amazing structure. Buddha statues are getting bigger on mainland China in bid to lure pilgrims and tourists. I would love to see those amazing structures Buddhist statues. Out of those 24 huge Statues in China , I have only visited Big Buddha of Lingshan (Buddha Shakyamuni), Big Buddha of Leshan, Sichuan, Samantabhadra, Sichuan Province and Manjushri, Shanxi Province.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/travel/chinas-huge-buddha-statues-chinese.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:47 AM
    Wow ….what a fantastic discovery by astronomers’ search . There are other habitable planets out in the sky. Planets like earth in the out space are not rare to the scientist. There’s more to life on earth and earth is often referred to as a Goldilocks planet. Astronomers found a first truly earth-like planet in habitable zone after years of research. New discovery lead by Steven Vogt and Paul Butler suggested our galaxy may be teeming with potentially habitable planets . Could not have imagine there are 200 billion stars in the universe, there could be a possibility that there are more life in other planets which are not yet found. Steven Scott Vogt and Paul Butler are one of those astronomer whose main interest is the search for extra solar planets. The planet Earth was believed to be the center of the universe, there are innumerable beings in the universe. Interesting read.
    According to the Buddha, there are some other forms of life existing in other parts of the universe. I do believe that as found in other Buddhist scriptures.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/a-planet-discovered-that-could-have-life.html
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:30 AM
    HONG KONG: Microplastic contamination has been found in tap water in countries around the world, leading to calls from scientists for urgent research on the implications for health.

    Scores of tap water samples from more than a dozen nations were analysed by scientists for an investigation by Orb Media, who shared the findings with the Guardian. Overall, 83 per cent of the samples were contaminated with plastic fibres.

    The US had the highest contamination rate, at 94 per cent, with plastic fibres found in tap water sampled at sites including Congress buildings, the US Environmental Protection Agency’s headquarters, and Trump Tower in New York. Lebanon and India had the next highest rates.

    Read more about this article at https://bit.ly/2xRfi1x
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:22 AM
    Every time you buy a fashion item made from leather – be it a trendy handbag, a piece of comfortable shoes – please think about the tremendous cruelty that stands at the foundation of that product. This petition targets both the Chinese government – who has repeatedly failed to adopt animal welfare laws and has allowed this industry to thrive – as well as consumers worldwide, to take the pledge to go cruel-free and stop purchasing leather products.

    Please stop buying leather products from today https://bit.ly/2sWcGMW
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:16 AM
    There is some wonderful news in the animal world after California pet stores have been told they must get their puppies, kittens and rabbits from shelters and rescue centres only.

    As of January 2019, it will be illegal for stores to buy animals from pet breeders and any store being caught will face a fine of $500.

    Individual, private buyers will still be able to buy their pets from a breeder, reports the New York Times.

    Read more about this great news at https://bit.ly/2Jy8j1E
  • Anonymous
    Friday, Jul 19. 2019 10:06 PM
    [22:04, 19/7/2019] Vajrasecrets.com: Thanks to H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche for spreading information about Dorje Shugden.


    I am happy to say that Dorje Shugden is my new best friend. But he feels very familiar to me. It’s as if this is not my first encounter with him. Perhaps I was a Dorje Shugden fan in one of my past lives.


    I’ll keep this testimony simple without going into much detail about what happened. All I can say is I love you Dorje Shugden and I hope to have a better connection with you.


    Although I am not a Buddhist, I respect and accept other religions. I wish I had known about Dorje Shugden much earlier because I have been volunteering for Kechara since 2017.



    Here are a few situations where I have experienced miraculous results:
    1. I had problems waking up on Saturday. After saying OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA once, I could feel my muscles getting better and it was just easy for me to wake up.
    2. My eyes suddenly hurt when I was doing my work in front of the computer. I could not open them so I began uttering OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA in silence. To my surprise, my eyes were not sore anymore. After the third recitation, my problem went away.
    I am not going to go into detail about what happened because I am a private person, but DS is amazing.
    3. I have awards in my field of work, but I could not do my work. That was my first encounter with Dorje Shugden’s mantra. After I said the mantra, I started coughing and felt like throwing up. The next day, I could finish my work.
    4. A lady suddenly caused me trouble. I accepted the fact that she did not like me and expressed how I felt to her expecting that day would turn into a horrible day. She suddenly told me that she would follow everything I told her without any questions asked.
    I did not say OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA at that time, but at that moment when she responded to me in that way, I somehow knew or felt that it was Dorje Shugden’s assistance. I did not even ask him and he was there.
    5. I felt a positive shift….like a strong knowing that everything is going to be alright. And I felt that message was from Dorje Shugden.
    There are too many stories to share.
    Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
    I love you. Thank you.
    Anonymous
    (Discovered about Dorje Shugden on 27th June, 2019, From YouTube, Dorje Shugden’s mantra)
    [no sender]

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The Unknown

The Known and unknown are both feared,
Known is being comfortable and stagnant,
The unknown may be growth and opportunities,
One shall never know if one fears the unknown more than the known.
Who says the unknown would be worse than the known?
But then again, the unknown is sometimes worse than the known. In the end nothing is known unless we endeavour,
So go pursue all the way with the unknown,
because all unknown with familiarity becomes the known.
~Tsem Rinpoche

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The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
6 days ago
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
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At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
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Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha\'s mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha's mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha\'s. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
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Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
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High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
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This is pretty amazing!

First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
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This is pretty amazing! First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
2 months ago
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can\'t stop thinking of you and I can\'t forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can't stop thinking of you and I can't forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
2 months ago
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
2 months ago
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
2 months ago
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
2 months ago
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
2 months ago
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
2 months ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
2 months ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
2 months ago
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
DON\'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
2 months ago
DON'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
2 months ago
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
2 months ago
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
3 months ago
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
3 months ago
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
3 months ago
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
3 months ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
3 months ago
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
3 months ago
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
3 months ago
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
3 months ago
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
3 months ago
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden\'s grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
3 months ago
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden's grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
3 months ago
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche 

www.tsemrinpoche.com
3 months ago
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
3 months ago
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
3 months ago
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
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Videos On The Go

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  • Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
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    This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
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  • This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
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    This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
    3 months ago
    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
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    3 months ago
    These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
    4 months ago
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  • Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
    4 months ago
    Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
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    4 months ago
    Beautiful
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    4 months ago
    My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
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CHAT PICTURES

Madam Glian Sim prepared the water bowls before the water offerings were started. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
2 hours ago
Madam Glian Sim prepared the water bowls before the water offerings were started. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Mr. Cheah Fook Wan offered lights and incense to The Three Jewels on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
2 hours ago
Mr. Cheah Fook Wan offered lights and incense to The Three Jewels on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Janice So has offered flowers to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara and all Buddhas prior to the prayer. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
2 hours ago
Janice So has offered flowers to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara and all Buddhas prior to the prayer. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
KISG has carried a session of prayer recitations to Mother Tara in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
2 hours ago
KISG has carried a session of prayer recitations to Mother Tara in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
We have new student last week. He is only 3 years old. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
We have new student last week. He is only 3 years old. Lin Mun KSDS
Wow most students can do full lotus. Rejoice. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Wow most students can do full lotus. Rejoice. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Alice guided students to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Teacher Alice guided students to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
We have Robey showing us the right way to do plank during the exercise session. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
We have Robey showing us the right way to do plank during the exercise session. Lin Mun KSDS
Students enjoyed activities last Sunday. Exercise and stretching lesson. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Students enjoyed activities last Sunday. Exercise and stretching lesson. Lin Mun KSDS
Thanks to Uncle Edward, Karen, Ashley Tan, Ashley Eng, Neil, Usha and Sudharshan for helping out for our lunch distribution today. We would also like to thank our sponsors Sogo and Munchy's for their continuous support. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 days ago
Thanks to Uncle Edward, Karen, Ashley Tan, Ashley Eng, Neil, Usha and Sudharshan for helping out for our lunch distribution today. We would also like to thank our sponsors Sogo and Munchy's for their continuous support. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
These are some of the food distribution photos taken from our kitchen last Saturday. We thanked all volunteers who have come to help for the preparation since 3pm. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 days ago
These are some of the food distribution photos taken from our kitchen last Saturday. We thanked all volunteers who have come to help for the preparation since 3pm. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Teacher Julie taught children Nagomi Art and they love it. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Teacher Julie taught children Nagomi Art and they love it. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback - Children volunteered in Kechara Soup Kitchen. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback - Children volunteered in Kechara Soup Kitchen. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- Fun activity in camp. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback- Fun activity in camp. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback - DIY soap making activity. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback - DIY soap making activity. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- KSDS camp in Kechara Forest Retreat. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback- KSDS camp in Kechara Forest Retreat. Lin Mun KSDS
A simple but meaningful way to spend the weekend liberating birds. Animals deserve lots of love, care and freedom too. Through them, we learn to be more compassionate! ~Kechara Penang Study Group Jacinta
1 week ago
A simple but meaningful way to spend the weekend liberating birds. Animals deserve lots of love, care and freedom too. Through them, we learn to be more compassionate! ~Kechara Penang Study Group Jacinta
Some members from Kechara Penang Study Group get together to do a Dorje Shugden puja this afternoon. Join us if you're in Penang next time. ~KPSG Jacinta
1 week ago
Some members from Kechara Penang Study Group get together to do a Dorje Shugden puja this afternoon. Join us if you're in Penang next time. ~KPSG Jacinta
Today we received a lot recycling items from the public. Thanks for supporting us always. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Today we received a lot recycling items from the public. Thanks for supporting us always. KEP-Serena
Today we are doing recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Today we are doing recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 1st Prize Winner is Stella Cheang. Congratulations! Stella wins a Dorje Shugden Puja worth RM400 + Dorje Shugden pendant on black onyx. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
1 week ago
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 1st Prize Winner is Stella Cheang. Congratulations! Stella wins a Dorje Shugden Puja worth RM400 + Dorje Shugden pendant on black onyx. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 2nd Prize Winner is Wylfred Ng. Congratulations! Wylfred wins a Gyenze pendant + Original Red Crystal incense. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
1 week ago
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 2nd Prize Winner is Wylfred Ng. Congratulations! Wylfred wins a Gyenze pendant + Original Red Crystal incense. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
How to Clear Spirit Disturbances by Pastor Chia Today at 9:30 PM – 11 PM in Kechara House, PJ
2 weeks ago
How to Clear Spirit Disturbances by Pastor Chia Today at 9:30 PM – 11 PM in Kechara House, PJ
Join us for the annual Ullambana Festival on Saturday August 10th at Kechara Forest Retreat and make the most of the auspicious Ullambana month. PROGRAMME: 9:00am – Opening speech & Dharma sharing 9:30am – Grand Ullambana Gyenze Puja for good fortune, long life & merits 12:15pm – Free vegetarian lunch 2:00pm – Grand Ullambana Trakze Puja for protection & blessings 5:00pm – End The highlight of the Ullambana Festival is two powerful & extensive pujas that will be performed according to the tradition of Gaden Monastery. We've also prepared a wide selection of traditional offerings to send bountiful merits to the people who matter in your life. Don't miss this opportunity to bring tremendous benefits to your dearly departed as well as those who are still with you. For more information on the Ullambana Festival and Ullambana offerings, please get in touch with us at +609 221 5600, +603 7803 3908, +6012 987 3908 (WhatsApp only), care@kechara.com or visit our online partner
2 weeks ago
Join us for the annual Ullambana Festival on Saturday August 10th at Kechara Forest Retreat and make the most of the auspicious Ullambana month. PROGRAMME: 9:00am – Opening speech & Dharma sharing 9:30am – Grand Ullambana Gyenze Puja for good fortune, long life & merits 12:15pm – Free vegetarian lunch 2:00pm – Grand Ullambana Trakze Puja for protection & blessings 5:00pm – End The highlight of the Ullambana Festival is two powerful & extensive pujas that will be performed according to the tradition of Gaden Monastery. We've also prepared a wide selection of traditional offerings to send bountiful merits to the people who matter in your life. Don't miss this opportunity to bring tremendous benefits to your dearly departed as well as those who are still with you. For more information on the Ullambana Festival and Ullambana offerings, please get in touch with us at +609 221 5600, +603 7803 3908, +6012 987 3908 (WhatsApp only), care@kechara.com or visit our online partner
Join us this weekend for SPIRITUAL SATURDAY in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 13 JULY 9.00 am: Cook for the community - salted eggs & pineapple jam 11.00 am: Book Club - Compassion Conquers All (Eng) / Time To Wake Up (Chi) 12.30 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!), contact us: +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See all July activities: bit.ly/2FCrJm6
2 weeks ago
Join us this weekend for SPIRITUAL SATURDAY in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 13 JULY 9.00 am: Cook for the community - salted eggs & pineapple jam 11.00 am: Book Club - Compassion Conquers All (Eng) / Time To Wake Up (Chi) 12.30 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!), contact us: +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See all July activities: bit.ly/2FCrJm6
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Dorje Shugden
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