Wonderful Okinawa

By | Nov 20, 2017 | Views: 566

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(By Tsem Rinpoche and Pastor Adeline)

 

Introduction

When the word ‘Japan’ comes to mind, people will usually think about Hokkaido, Tokyo, or Osaka, as these prefectures are the most popular tourist destinations. Another prefecture that should not be left out on any trip to Japan, one that is distinct from mainland Japan with its similarly ancient culture, different languages, art and distinct cuisine, is Okinawa.

 

History

The prefecture of Okinawa consists of a long stretch of islands situated between four main islands: Okinawa Shoto, Okinawa Honto, Miyako Island, and Yaegama Retto. These four are known as the Ryukyu Islands connecting Japan to Taiwan near the East China Sea. The residents of Okinawa call themselves the Uchinanchu (sea people) and gave their island prefecture the moniker of ‘The rope in the open sea’ because the chain of islands resembles a rope.

Being situated in a strategic location in the centre of the East China Sea, the Ryukyu Kingdom was a wealthy trading nation that connected Japan, China, and Southeast Asia. It was during the 15th Century that King Satto formed a tributary relationship between Japan and China, which profoundly accelerated Ryukyu’s culture and politics.

In 1609 the Ryukyu Kingdom was forced to form another tributary relationship with shogunates of the Satsuma and Tokugawa clans, in which the Satsuma clan received small tax profits from the Ryukyu Kingdom’s trade with China. However, the Satsuma clan’s authority over the islands allowed a degree of domestic freedom in terms of politics for more than two centuries.

The Ryukyu Kingdom was finally disbanded in 1872 during the Meiji Restoration initiated by the Japanese government. It was renamed to Ryukyu-han, and then again to the Okinawa Prefecture of Japan in 1879. During World War II, approximately 120,000 Okinawans, or a quarter of their population, perished in the Battle of Okinawa. The battle also devastated the many historical and cultural remnants of the Ryukyu Kingdom. Okinawa remained under United States occupation until 1972.

A number of historical sites did survive the War, such as the newly-rebuilt Shuri Castle located in Naha, and the tiny village of Taketomi in the southern parts of Yeagama Islands. World War II landmarks found in the main island of Okinawa include the Peace Memorial Park in Naha, the Himeyuri Monument, as well as other war-related locations, such as several American military bases.

 

Location

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Population

Okinawa covers 1,206.96 square kilometres (466.01 square miles) with an estimated population of 1.4 million people.

Contacts for Emergencies and Unexpected Incidents
110- Calls the police to report an accident or crime.
119- Calls an ambulance or fire engine in case of injury, illness or fire.
118- Reports an accident in the sea.

 

Climate and What to Wear

Summer may be long in Okinawa, but there is a significant difference in temperature between day and night, so it is best to prepare suitable clothing based on the time of year you are planning to visit.

SPRING

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SUMMER

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AUTUMN

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WINTER

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When to Visit

Avoid visiting Okinawa during mid-May to mid-June, as the rainy season might ruin your outdoor plans. If you are interested in water sports such as scuba-diving or snorkeling, it is recommended to visit during July-October since the water temperature will be around 25°C–28°C (77°F–82°F).

Please note that July and September is also typhoon season, so you might experience several days of heavy rain and strong winds. If you are interested in festivals or Okinawan culture, you can visit on New Year’s Day for the Shuri Castle Festival, March for the dragon boat races, August for the Eisa Festival or Naha Festival, and October for Tug of War. Please be aware that crowds may be especially heavy during these times so accommodation may be limited.

 

Long-Lived Okinawans

There is a famous proverb in Okinawa that goes:

“At 70, you are a child. At 80, you are merely a youth. And at 90, if the ancestors invite you to heaven, ask them to wait until you are 100, and then you might consider it.”

Okinawa is home to some of the longest-living people in the world. Residents have an average life expectancy rate of 86 years for women and 78 years for men.

The ancient Chinese used to call Okinawa ‘the land of immortals’. Unlike other countries, common illnesses like heart diseases, strokes, and high cholesterol are very rare here. This is likely due to Okinawans having very social, active lives; low stress levels, and a tradition of keeping fit through a lot of exercise. They also have a very healthy diet, which is very low in calories and salt, but high in nutrition and antioxidants.

Okinawans also practice hare haru bu, which means only eating until they are 80 percent full. The average calorie intake for elderly Okinawans is only 1,800cal per day compared to a 2,500cal per day diet for the average Western male.

 

Food

Okinawa is known for its delicious and unique food culture. Due to its location, most of the food in Okinawa is influenced by Chinese culture. Even so, authentic Japanese elements and flavours in their food still remain.

The food varies from sweet to savory, and below are seven must-try local Okinawan dishes.

 

1. Goya Champurū

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‘Champuru’ means ‘something mixed, while ‘goya’ means bitter gourd, which is included in the dish along with tofu, eggs, pork, and vegetables such as soy sprouts, carrots, mung bean sprouts, and sweet potato slices. It is a healthy dish loaded with Vitamin C, and champuru Goya is prized for its restorative effects, especially during the humid summer season.

 

2. Sea Grapes

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Also referred to as umi budo, this dish is known as the caviar of Okinawa. To fully enjoy its unique flavour, dip it into ponzu (citrus vinegar) before taking a bite. It is also served as a garnish for sashimi (raw fish), or as a main topping for a bowl of rice.

 

3. Mozuku Seaweed

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Mozuku seaweed can only be harvested in the oceans of Okinawa, as the temperature of the waters around the islands gives it its characteristic thickness. This seaweed has a distinct sour taste, is low in calories, and rich in fucoidan, making it a healthy snack. Aside from its taste, mozuku seaweed is also enjoyed for its antibacterial functions, strengthening of the immune system, improvement to lifestyle-related diseases, and for its reputed cancer preventative effects.

 

4. Rafute

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Rafute, or what the locals call buta no kakuni (braised pork belly), is similar to the Chinese-style stewed pork ribs/belly which is known as dong po rou. This dish contains succulent slabs of pork belly cooked in soy sauce, brown sugar and sometimes awamori (Okinawa’s alcohol). This dish is said to prolong one’s lifespan.

 

5. Peanut-flavoured Tofu

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This dessert is also known as ‘jimmy-tofu’, and it has a texture denser than regular tofu. Peanuts are squeezed for their liquid which is then mixed with potato starch to create this dessert. You can eat it on its own, or add grated ginger or brown sugar syrup for extra flavour.

 

6. Sata Andagi

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Okinawans call this snack the ‘local donut’, as it is shaped like a donut and made out of flour, sugar and eggs. It has a crispy exterior, but is soft on the inside, and it is best eaten when warm. It can be served with fresh fruits or a scoop of ice cream. Some restaurants also serve them together with savoury vegetables.

 

7. Shikuwasa

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This extremely sour citrus fruit is commonly known as the Taiwanese tangerine. It is loved for its low sugar content and sourness, and is used to produce juices, jams and used as a garnish to dishes. Shikuwasa juice can be made into a sorbet, and it serves well as a refreshing dessert during the hot Okinawan summer.

 

Places to Go and Things to Do in Okinawa

 

1. Okinawa World

There are many attractions in Okinawa World, such as the Okinawa Craft Village and the Abu Park, where visitors can discover the secrets of the Habu, a highly poisonous snake.

However, the main attraction of this park is the 300,000-year old Gyokusendo Cave, which is open to visitors to explore.

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Gyokusendo Cave, which was discovered in 1967,  is the perfect place for those who need a break from the heat and sunshine, as the cave system has a year-round temperature of 21°C. The cave is filled with thousands of stalagmites and pools of crystal-clear water. It is a peaceful and quiet place that lends itself well to contemplation; all that can be heard throughout the cave is the sound of gently trickling water.

Address: 1336, Tamagusuku, Maekawa, Nanjo-shi, Okinawa, 901-0616
Telephone: 098-949-7421
Hours: 09:00 to 18:00
Admission:

Adult Child
Open Greeting Pass (Cave, Kingdom Village, and Abu Museum) 1,650 yen 830 yen
Cave and Kingdom Village 1,240 yen 620 yen
Kingdom Village 620 yen 310 yen
Habu Museum 620 yen 310 yen

 

Accommodation

These are the recommended hotels near Okinawa World. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Hyakunagaran Hotel
Address: 1229-1 Hyakuna Yamashitahara Tamagusuku-Aza, Nanjo 901-0603, Okinawa Prefecture
Phone: 0081-98-949-1011
Website: http://www.hyakunagaran.com/English/

2. Southern Beach Hotel & Resort Okinawa
Address: 1-6-1 Nishizakicho, Itoman 901-0306, Okinawa Prefecture
Phone: +81 98-992-7500
Website: http://www.southernbeach-okinawa.com/

 

2. Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

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‘Chura’ means ‘beautiful’ in the Okinawan dialect, while ‘umi’ means the sea. At the Churaumi Aquarium, visitors have the opportunity to explore the mysteries of the deep blue Okinawa Sea. Filled with mystical and rare creatures, one of the aquarium’s main features is huge water tank called ‘the Sea of Kuroshio Current’ where you can observe one of the world’s largest fish, the whale shark. It is a must-visit place for fish or aquarium lovers.

Address: 424 Ishikawa, Motobu, Kunigami District, Okinawa Prefecture 905-0206, Japan
Telephone: +81-980-48-3748
Hours: 10:00 to 19:00
Admission:

  • GENERAL
    1,850 yen (Adults)
    1,230 yen (High School students)
    610 yen (Elementary and junior high school students)
    Free (Children under six)
  • GROUPS (of more than 20)
    1,480 yen (Adults)
    980 yen (High School students)
    490 yen (Elementary and junior high school students)
    Free (Children under six)
  • ANNUAL PASSPORT HOLDERS
    3,700 yen (Adults)
    2,460 yen (High School students)
    1,220 yen (Elementary and junior high school students)
    Free (Children under six)

 

Accommodation

These are the recommended hotels near the aquarium. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Okinawa Motobu Guesthouse
Address: 905-0205 Okinawa, Motobu, Yamakawa 571, Japan
Phone: +81 90-9074-0328
Website: https://okinawamotobuguesthouse.jimdo.com/

2. Hotel Orion Motobu Resort and Spa
Address: 905-0207 Okinawa, Motobu, Bise 148-1, Japan
Phone: +81 980-51-7300
Website: http://www.okinawaresort-orion.com/

 

3. Futenma Shrine

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This shrine was built 500 years ago, and visitors and locals go there to pray for good fortune or to enjoy its serenity. Visitors can purchase an omikuji, a strip of paper containing a random fortune, or an ema, a wooden wishing plaque where you can write your prayers or wishes and hang them on the shrine.

There is an underground cave within the temple grounds. To get there, head to the shop next to the main hall and ask the staff for access. Visitors are limited to a maximum 30 minutes each to visit the shrine in the cave. Legend has it that the cave was once home to a lady of unrivalled beauty, who later transcended into a goddess.

Address: Fatima, Ginowan-City, Okinawa Prefecture
Telephone: 098-892-3344
Hours: 10:00 to 17:00
Admission: Free

 

Accommodation

These are the recommended hotels near Futenma Shrine. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget. Laguna Garden Hotel is a 10-minute drive from the shrine, offers a lot of fun activities, and has a beach nearby.

1. Hotel Southern Village Okinawa
Address: 1359-1 Adaniya | Okinawa, Kitanakagusuku-son, Nakagami-gun 901-2316, Okinawa Prefecture
Telephone: +81 98-935-3030
Website: http://southern-village.okinawa/

2. Laguna Garden Hotel
Address: 4-1-1 Mashiki, Ginowan 901-2224, Okinawa Prefecture
Telephone: +81 98-897-2121
Website: http://www.laguna-garden.jp/

 

4. War Memorials

Near the end of World War II, Okinawa Honto became the site of one of the war’s bloodiest battles. Over 200,000 people lost their lives during the battle, including more than 100,000 civilians and 12,500 Americans.  The devastating effects of the war made a huge impact on the Okinawans and as a result, there are many monuments and museums scattered throughout Okinawa Hondo.

The main memorial to the Battle of Okinawa is the Peace Memorial Park, which has its own museum. At the museum, visitors will gain an overview of the lead-up to the battle, learn about the battle itself, and discover how Okinawa was reconstructed. There are monuments in the park such as the ‘Cornerstone of Peace’, a collection of large stone plates with the names of all fallen soldiers and civilians.

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A few kilometres west of the Peace Park stands the Himeyuri Monument, also known as the Himeyuri no To, which commemorates the fate of the female high school students who worked under harsh conditions in the army field hospitals.

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Another place related to the Battle of Okinawa is the Former Navy Underground Headquarters, which consists of underground corridors and rooms that were once used as the Japanese navy’s headquarters during the war.

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  • Peace Memorial Park
    Address: Mabuni, Itoman 901-0333, Okinawa Prefecture
    Telephone: 098-997-3844
    Hours: 09:00 to 17:00
    Admission: 300 yen (Adults), 150 yen (children)
  • Himeyuri Monument
    Address: 671-1 Ibara, Itoman-shi, Okinawa
    Telephone: 098-997-2100
    Hours: 09:00 to 17:30
    Admission: 310 yen (Adults), 210 yen (High school), 110 yen (Junior high and elementary)
  • Former Navy Underground
    Address: 236 Tomigusuku, Okinawa Prefecture 901-0241, Japan
    Telephone: 098-850-4055
    Hours: 08:30 to 17:00 (October to June)
    08:30 to 17:00 (July to September)
    Admission: 440 yen (Adult), 220 yen (Children)

 

Accommodation

The following hotels are a 12 to 24-minute drive to the Peace Memorial Park or Himeyuri Monument. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Southern Beach Hotel & Resort Okinawa
Address: 1-6-1 Nishizakicho, Itoman 901-0306, Okinawa Prefecture
Phone: +81 98-992-7500
Website: http://www.southernbeach-okinawa.com/

2. Hyakunagaran Hotel
Address: 1229-1 Hyakuna Yamashitahara Tamagusuku-Aza, Nanjo 901-0603, Okinawa Prefecture
Phone: 0081-98-949-1011
Website: http://www.hyakunagaran.com/English/

The following hotels are near the Former Navy Underground. We recommend that you do further research to choose a hotel that suits your needs.

3. Hotel Gran View Okinawa
Address: 2 Chome-3-2 Akamine, Naha-shi, Okinawa-ken 901-0154, Japan
Phone: +81 98-859-4890
Website: granview.co.jp

4. Mecure Okinawa Naha
Address: 3-3-19 Tsubogawa, Naha, 3 Chome Tsubogawa, Okinawa, 900-0025, Japan
Phone: +81 98-855-7111
Website: accorhotels.com

 

5. Makishi Public Market

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The Makishi Public Market, also known as ‘the kitchen of the people’ in Okinawa, was established in 1972. There are more than 150 stalls that sell Okinawan products, covering a huge variety of produce from fresh vegetables and fruits, to fresh meat and seafood. A hugely popular tourist destination, the market is always crowded and busy with many tourists coming to get a taste of the local dishes while locals do their daily grocery shopping.

The first floor is mainly for leisure shopping; on this floor, you will find perishables, souvenirs and even cosmetics. Make sure to shop wisely and to compare prices as they may differ between stores.

After exploring the first floor, you can head to the second floor where you will find approximately 10 restaurants. If you are not interested in eating seafood (which is the speciality of most restaurants), then Kiraku offers a variety of 120 dishes to choose from.

Address: 2-10-1, Matsuo, Naha-City, Okinawa Prefecture
Telephone: +81 98-867-6560
Hours: Varies by shops

Accommodation

The following hotels are near the Makishi Public Market. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Hyatt Regency Naha
Address: 3 Chome-6-20 Makishi, Naha-shi, Okinawa-ken 900-0013, Japan
Phone: +81 98-866-8888
Website: naha.regency.hyatt.com

2. Crowne Plaza ANA Okinawa Haborview
Address: 2 Chome-46 Izumizaki, Naha, Okinawa Prefecture 900-0021, Japan
Phone: +81 98-853-2111
Website: ihg.com

 

6. Cape Manzamo

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The name ‘Manzamo’, which means ‘ten thousand men sitting on the grassland’, was given by the Ryukyu King Sho Kei. He was so impressed with the wide space that he named it ‘Man’ (10,000), ‘Za’ (to sit), ‘Mo’ (field). Facing the East China Sea, this cape has an interesting shape – that of an elephant. You can see its ‘trunk’ (zoe no hanna) dipping into the ocean.

Address: Onna-Village, Okinawa Prefecture

Accommodation

The following hotels are near Cape Manzamo. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. ANA InterContinental Manza Beach Resort
Address: 2260 Serakaki, Onna-son, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa-ken 904-0404, Japan
Phone: +81 98-966-1211
Website: anaintercontinental-manza.jp

2. Sheraton Okinawa Sun Marina Resort
Address: Japan, 〒904-0494 JP-47Kunigami-gun, Kunigami-gun Fuchaku, 66-1 Aza Fuchaku, Onna-son
Phone: +81 98-965-2222
Website: starwoodhotels.com

 

7. Shuri Castle

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Named after the capital of the Ryukyu Kingdom, this castle served as the administrative centre and home for several centuries of Ryukyu kings until Okinawa became a Japanese prefecture in 1879. Some buildings are replicas of the original which had been badly damaged during the war; reconstruction efforts took place in the late 1980s.

Located high on a hill, the castle is covered with dragons, the symbol of the Ryukyuan King. You can easily spot them on the roof and pillars before entering the Main Hall (Seiden). With its ancient architecture, the castle transports you back to a different time and place, and is well-worth a visit if you are curious about the Ryukyu Kings and Okinawan history.

Address: 1 chome-2 Shurikinjocho, Naha, Okinawa Prefecture 903-0815, Japan
Telephone: +81 98-886-2020
Hours:

  • 08:00 to 19:30 (April – June, October – December)
  • 08:00 to 20:30 (July – September)
  • 08:00 to 18:30 (December – March)

Closed on the first Wednesday and Thursday of July
Admission: 820 yen (Adult), 310 yen (Child)

Accommodation

The following hotels are near Shuri Castle. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Naha Shuri Castle
Address: Japan, 〒903-8601 Okinawa, Naha-shi, 1 Chome-132-1 Shuriyamagawachō
Phone: +81 98-886-5454
Website: doubletree3.hilton.com

2. Okinawa Island Hotel
Address: Japan, 〒902-0066 Okinawa-ken, Naha-shi, 35 Daidō
Phone: +81 98-884-3191
Website: okinawahotel.co.jp

 

8. Blue Cave

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The Blue Cave, so named because of the blue lights which vary in hue and shade according to the time of day, is one of the most famous snorkeling and diving spots on the main island of Okinawa. At this popular underwater destination, not only can you marvel the changing lights but you can also see friendly fishes, some of whom are so used to visitors that you can even catch some of them sleeping!

Those who are not certified divers can also snorkel under the guidance of experts, in order to enjoy the underwater delights. Since the Blue Cave is a famous attraction, it is recommended to reserve the first tour in the morning to try and avoid the underwater crowds.

Address: Cape Maeda, Onna-son, Kunigami-gun 904-0417, Okinawa Prefecture
Telephone: +81 98-963-0166

Accommodation

The following hotels are near the Blue Cave. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Hotel Nakadoma Inn
Address: 258 Maeganeku, Onna-son, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa-ken 904-0414, Japan
Phone: +81 98-982-5337
Website: nakainn.com

2. Renaissance Okinawa Resort
Address: Japan, 〒904-0416 Okinawa-ken, Kunigami-gun, Onna-son, Yamada, 3425-2
Phone: +81 98-965-0707
Website: http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/okarn-renaissance-okinawa-resort/

 

9. Katsuren Castle Ruins

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If you are interested in historical sites, the Katsuren Castle Ruins is the place for you. It was once the seat of Lord Amawari in the 15th Century. According to legend, Lord Amawari was left in the mountains to die because he was a very sickly child. However, the child grew into a powerful leader who took over the Katsuren Castle. He later died during a failed attempt to take over Shuri Castle. Today, only a few stone walls remain of the formerly majestic castle.

Address: Kudeken Chinen Nanjo, Okinawa prefecture 901-1511
Telephone: +81-98-949-1899
Hours: 09:00 to 18:00
Admission: 200 yen (Adults), 100 yen (Children)

Accommodation

The following hotels are a 16 to 20-minute drive away from the Katsuren Castle Ruins. It is recommended that you do further research to select a hotel that best suits your needs and budget.

1. Okinawa Grand Mer Resort
Address: 〒904-2174 Okinawa-ken, Okinawa-shi, Yogi, 2 chome 8-1
Phone: +81 98-931-1500
Website: www.okinawa-grandmer.com

2. Hotel Southern Village Okinawa
Address: 1359-1 Adaniya | Okinawa, Kitanakagusuku-son, Nakagami-gun 901-2316, Okinawa Prefecture
Phone: +81 98-935-3030
Website: http://southern-village.okinawa/

 

Festivals in Okinawa

Okinawa is well-known for its cultural festivals, such as the Eisa Dance Festival, Shuri Castle Festival, Hari Festival, Yaeyama Beach Opening Festival, Naha Tug-of-War Festival, and the Pantu Festival of Miyakojima.

 

1. Eisa Dance Festival

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The Eisa Dance Festival was originally a dance performed during O-Bon, when synchronised drumbeats bade farewell to the visiting spirits of ancestors. The Eisa dance has since evolved into an entirely different kind of performance, characterised by colourful costumes, coordinated movements and a large number of dancers.

While Eisa performances are held all around Okinawa for various occasions, by far the largest and most spectacular Eisa event is the annual All-Okinawa Eisa Festival staged in Okinawa City every August or September. Combining folk music, traditional food and fireworks, the Eisa Festival is immensely popular amongst tourists and locals alike, drawing crowds of more than 200,000 spectators to the Okinawa Koza City Sports Park and Goya Crossing.

Since the end of World War II, the outer islands such as Ishigaki and Miyakojima have assimilated Eisa dancing into their annual calendar due to its growing popularity. Each of them hold their own Eisa festivals and put their own local spin on the dance. Attendance to this festival is free as it is meant for everyone to have fun and enjoy the culture of Japan.

 

2. Shuri Castle Festival

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Every year, the splendour of the Ryukyu Kingdom is brought to life during the Shuri Castle Festival. Taking place over three days near the end of October, the Okinawa Festival features classical Ryukyu music, dance and parades as well as a reenactment of the coronation of the first Ryukyu king.

One highlight of this festival is the Sapposhi Parade between Shureimon and Hoshinmon Gates, during which a procession of people dressed in Ryukyu-era garb traverse a historic route taken by imperial envoys in the days when the tiny kingdom paid tribute to the Chinese throne.

A second grand parade commemorates the rituals of the royal court along Kokusai Street. The third parade held on the final day of the festival retraces the route taken by the king and queen as they visited the magnificent temples which once stood around Shuri.

As the festival is held only once a year, it is easy to miss it but you can still participate in the daily Ukejo ceremony, at 8:25am every morning when the main gates of the castle are opened with great pomp and pageantry.

 

3. Hari Festival

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‘Hari’ are the traditional Okinawan dragon boat races that take place on various dates all over the islands. Of these, by far the most historical and possibly largest race is that in Itoman, held annually around the beginning of June. Immersed with religious ceremonial trappings that date back to the original races held by the king of Nanzan in 1403, the Itoman race is thought to be a ritual to invite bountiful catches by the local Uminchu (fishermen).

Less traditional but equally exciting is the Naha Hari, which features the same colourful boats (called sabani in the local language) as the Itoman race, without quite as much ceremony. What all the races have in common is delicious local food, a festive atmosphere, and dazzling fireworks to cap off a fun-filled day. The race takes place at Tomari Port, which is a fishing port near the Tomarin ferry terminal in Naha City.

 

4. Yaeyama Beach Opening Festival

An annual event held on Kurojima, about half an hour boat ride from Ishigaki, the festival has the distinction of being the first of such festivals to take place every year in Japan. Travelers can sample the ever-popular Ishigaki beef, meet Miss Yaeyama, and dance kachashi-style to the accompaniment of a sanshin band, as residents and tourists alike celebrate on Miyazato Beach.

After a formal proclamation is delivered with traditional and religious undertones, everyone races into the clear sub-tropical waters for a refreshing swim.

 

5. Pantu Festival of Miyakojima

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Rather than sampling local food, listening to folk music, or watching traditional performances, travellers venturing to Miyakojima during the Pantu Festival will more likely find themselves being chased by mud-slinging demons dressed in leaves and wearing fearsome masks.

Also called ‘Pantupunaha’, this festival has its roots in ancient times. Locals in those times believed that on a special day every year, three demons (called pantu in the unique Miyakojima language) formed from a patch of sacred soil. According to local folklore, the pantu emerge from a famous spring near the village of Shimajiri and the three demons – Uya (‘Parent’), Naka (‘Middle’) and Zur (‘Child’) – race through the town rubbing mud on all who cannot get away fast enough.

Perhaps ironically, getting rubbed by the sanctified mud drawn from that ancient spring is thought to be an omen of good fortune, which is why parents and grandparents often put their reluctant children in the path of the volunteers chosen by local priestesses to play the role of the pantu. It takes place in Miyako Island, in early October, with free admission.

 

6. Naha Tug-of-War Festival

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With a 560-year history, this is one of the most anticipated festivals in Okinawa. The Naha Tug-of-War Festival takes place every October. The origin of this tradition dates back to 17th Century competitions between the eastern and the western rulers of Naha. In modern times, this custom is still performed to bring prosperity to Okinawa.

The giant 172-meter long, 32-tonne rope used during the Naha Great Tug-of-War was registered in the 1995 and 1996 Guinness World Records as the largest rope made of rice straw. Thousands of people of all ages, gender and nationalities participate in this festival each year. Admission is free to this festival which also features performances such as lion dancing, fan dancing and martial arts.

 

Travel Guides on Okinawa

Before travelling to Okinawa, it is advisable to read up on some travel books, or search online to help you plan your trip better. The book and app below are recommended to help you plan your trip.

 

1. Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands

Okinawa Cvr V2.indd

This convenient travel guide written by experienced traveller Robert Walker includes comprehensive information of the 150 Ryukyu Islands, highlighting interesting vacation spots, such as active volcanoes, hot springs, white sand beaches and surf spots, home-grown cuisine, ferry and flight schedules, lodgings, hiking trails and nature walks, family and children-oriented sights, and historical and cultural landmarks.

The guide is illustrated with over 200 colour photos, contains 40 maps, including a large fold-out map of Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands with insets for major cities, and also provides practical tips to help you avoid costly mistakes.

 

2. Okinawa Guide NAVITIME Travel App

image-44a

NAVITIME Travel is a Japanese website with more than 20,000 articles on Okinawa tourist information, such as beaches, foods, souvenirs and accommodations. The Travel App will be very useful for planning your trip and calling up information on the spot.
References:

  • http://www.ladyironchef.com/2017/02/okinawa-food/
  • http://www.visitokinawa.jp/category/destinations
  • http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e7105.html
  • http://www.fodors.com/world/asia/japan/okinawa/travel-tips/when-to-go-106418100
  • http://thesmartlocal.com/read/things-to-do-okinawa
  • http://factsanddetails.com/japan/cat18/sub119/item637.html
  • http://wikitravel.org/en/Okinawa
  • https://www.nanseirakuen.com/en/blog/okinawa-food.html5-okinawa-festivals

For more interesting information:

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About Pastor Adeline Woon

Adeline Woon is a Buddhist Pastor and a Sangha-to-be in Kechara who enjoys learning and sharing the Dharma with others. Due to her deep interest in Buddhism from a young age, Adeline enrolled herself into the Dharma Drum University in Taiwan, where she graduated with a Master in Religious Studies in 2012.
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9 Responses to Wonderful Okinawa

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  1. Samfoonheei on Sep 24, 2021 at 3:03 pm

    Beautiful unique island that’s belongs to Japan with a beautiful history. Okinawa is Japan’s southernmost prefecture, consisting of a few dozen, small beautiful islands including many inhabited islands over a vast ocean area. This particular island is a so-called Blue Zone, an area where the people live longer than most others elsewhere in the world. Okinawans are known for their longevity. Okinawa has amazing star-gazing, diving, a unique cuisine and yes, cherry blossoms too. Its also known as the “Hawaii of Japan”. The seas surrounding Okinawa’s islands are considered among the world’s most beautiful with coral reefs and abundant marine wildlife. That’s wonderful with many attractions for tourist to explore especially the Gyokusendo Cave. Its a natural museum beautifully carved over 300,000 years where this limestone cave is grown on a coral reef. Looking at those amazing pictures of the caves tell all. Interesting read and a place worth visiting to get away from the hot weather and the noise of cities. A place with plenty of interests, nice foods , cultural celebration and so forth.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Adeline for this sharing

  2. sarassitham on Oct 27, 2020 at 6:20 pm

    Mother nature is truly amazing, there are a lot of interesting places in the world to discover and explore and this unique island of Japan and home to a majority of the population Okinawa is truly wonderful.

    Thank you for the interesting sharing of Okinawa, hope to visit the great place and witness live of the famous Naha Tug-of-War Festival. I loved all the photos shared especially the yummy foods, the fascinating Yokusendo Cave, traditional Okinawa Craft Village and the secret of Abu Park.

  3. S.Prathap on Oct 17, 2019 at 4:59 pm

    Okinawa a much sort place to visit and explore.A land of beauty of the rising sun.It is distinct from mainland Japan with its similarly ancient culture,different languages,art and distinct cuisine.
    Okinawa do have delicious and yummy foods culture for visitor to try out.It also have so many wonderful place to visit.Okinawa is a home to some of the longest living people in the world.Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful article.

  4. Wai Meng Wan on Aug 5, 2018 at 3:05 pm

    Okinawa sounds like a cool place to go with for a spot of holiday, having quaint type of festivals, with its food influenced by the China, due to its relative proximity to Chinese Mainland and also Taiwan. A spot of Japan with plenty of sun, if that is your kind of fun.

  5. Stella Cheang on Dec 10, 2017 at 8:51 pm

    Thank you for this interesting sharing. The people of Okinawa sounds like they really know how to have fun. The yearly Naha Tug-of-War Festival and the Pantu Festival are really fun! It will be a destination that i will love to visit.

  6. Irene Lim on Dec 7, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    Thank you for sharing the interesting information on Okinawa. I would surely love to visit this destination in future.

  7. Fong on Dec 7, 2017 at 9:12 am

    Okinawa sounds like a destination unto itself and not just a part of Japan. The beautiful photos serves as a lure for one to sample the life and scenery of Okinawa.

    There are always stories of the long-lived Okinawans and many have attributed that to the climate and their diet. The one that really interested me is the sea grapes. I have seen these in the villages near Sarasin Bridge in Phuket. I thought it was uniquely Thai until now. What a small world.

    Overall, the life in Okinawa seems idyllic and a great place to recharge and learn something new.

  8. Anne Ong on Dec 5, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    Another beautiful place in Japan. Beautiful pictures Okinawa such as, 1. Goya Champurū, 7. Shuri Castle, 9. Katsuren Castle Ruins. And Interesting food like, 2. Sea Grapes, 1. Goya Champurū, 3. Mozuku Seaweed. Thank you very much Rinpoche and Pastor Adeline for this wonderful post. ??

  9. Samfoonheei on Nov 30, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    Wow…..Japan seem to be a never ending place of interest for one to visit. Now we have Okinawa a much sort place to visit and explore. A land of beauty of the rising sun. I have not been to any where in Japan yet. What I know that it’s a land of many beautiful shrines , ancient and historical sites , forests and the cherry blosome. Great to read abou these article as it will help me or any other travellers much easier. There are many interesting festivals to see and learn their cultures too. Wow…..Okinawa do have delicious and unique food cultures for visitors to try out. There are a number of place of interest to explore and discover in Okinawa,Japan.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Adeline for these details writeup.

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  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Aug 19. 2022 01:16 PM
    Came across this old post of a truly caring KB whom has been working for our Guru Tsem Rinpoche for a long time. Reading through all those comments tells all about KB …..a truly compassionate man. We can begin with a voice of compassion and a heart of love, an art of kindness. Compassion is to look beyond our pain and to see the pain of others.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing…. To be kind ,loving, caring to those who could not speak for themselves.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/a-text-message-from-kb-to-share.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Aug 19. 2022 01:12 PM
    We are truly fortunate to have H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche here in Malaysia. Learning, practicing Dharma from Rinpoche’s blog . Beautiful video by Jill Carroll tells us all the beauty of Dharma. All I can say is the gift of Dharma surpasses all gifts, and is truly supreme as its conquers all.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this video with us.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/letters-cards-gifts/a-beautiful-video-from-jill-carroll.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Aug 19. 2022 01:10 PM
    Wow……a surprising gift for HE Tsem Rinpoche from the team . Rinpoche loved it as all along Rinpoche watching and reading articles of Bigfoot, Sasquatches and Yetis. So thoughtful of them to look and did research on it to get the foot print done. It is made out of dental stone, looks like the casts the bigfoot hunters have.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this great gift with us. It not easy to see one though.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/students-friends/a-surprising-gift.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 16. 2022 02:28 PM
    Coming across Tsem Rinpoche’s blog has changed my life ever since then. No stopping for me , learning, practicing keeps me moving forward to be a better person. Still learning everyday through reading and revisit whatever articles I come across. It takes great courage to live simple and walk the path of peace by choosing Dharma. That’s my choice I have made . Glad that Susanne Mitsdörffer found Tsem Rinpoche ‘s blog that has changed her life. Yes its indeed reading and learning through the blogs has benefited many others readers.
    Thank you Rinpoche and writers team with folded hands.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/i-am-honoured.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 16. 2022 02:26 PM
    The magnificent Jetavanaramaya Stupa in Anuradhapura, in Sri Lanka is considered as one of the most sacred pilgrimage places. Located in the ruins of Jetavana monastery in the UNESCO world heritage city . It is an ancient Buddhist reliquary monument, built by King Mahasena of Anuradhapura in (273–301). It is also significant in recorded history as one of the tallest structures in the ancient world. The structure is no longer the tallest, but it is still the largest. Anuradhapura remains an important sacred place for Buddhistsit is one of the biggest archeological sites in the world. Would love to visit one day to see for my self.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/the-magnificent-jetavanaramaya-stupa-the-power-of-repentance-sri-lanka.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 16. 2022 02:24 PM
    Interesting story of Empress Dowager Xiaozhuang ,known as the Mother of the Qing Dynasty by many. She was the consort of Hong Taiji and was honoured as Empress Dowager Zhaosheng who was of the Khorchin Mongol Borjigit clan a Mongolian princess. She was a woman with intellectual and political interests, attaining the powerful position of Empress Dowager in Qing . She is credited in helping bringing Tibetan Buddhism to China. As empress dowager and grand empress dowager, she had significant influence in the Qing imperial court and was highly respected for her political wisdom and insight. Interesting read of the history behind this Empress who was also the grandmother of Kangxi.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/empress-xiaozhuang-wen-kangxis-mongolian-grandmother.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Aug 13. 2022 02:06 PM
    Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist, widely acknowledged to be one of the greatest and most influential physicists of all time. Famous for devising his theory of relativity, which revolutionized our understanding of space, time, gravity, and the universe .
    Albert Einstein did said that Buddhism is a philosophy, not a religion. Buddhism has the characteristics of what would be expected in a cosmic religion for the future. If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs, it would be Buddhism.
    He is often cited as one of the most influential scientists of the 20th century. His work continues to help astronomers study everything from gravitational waves to Mercury’s orbit. It is universal truth….as it covers both the natural and the spiritual and Buddhism has the answers. Interesting read. Reading through this post tell Einstein truly tell his love for Buddhism.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/einstein-on-buddhism.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Aug 13. 2022 02:01 PM
    Found this old interesting blog about the 100 most spiritually influential living people in 2012. The top 3 spots are great Buddhist leaders. Wonderful get to know some of those great names on the list. Thank you Rinpoche fir this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/people/100-most-spiritually-influential-living-people-in-2012.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Aug 13. 2022 01:59 PM
    Revisit this old post again listening to the songs by George Michael and Elton John. It was more than 30 years ago that George Michael and Elton John’s duet of “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me.” It’s known as one of the greatest pop duets of all time. Letting go is incredibly difficult. No matter what if we cling to worries about the future, or if we keep replaying the mistakes of the past we will never be happy. Let go and move on, if we want to be happy, do not dwell in the past, do not worry about the future, focus on living fully in the present. Time doesn’t heal emotional pain, we need to learn how to let go for sure. Learning Dharma is the best choice to focus on living fully and meaningfully in the present. Do not quit or give up nor matter what happens in life.
    Thankyou Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/film-tv-music/dont-let-the-sun-go-down-on-me-george-michael-and-elton-john.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Aug 13. 2022 01:58 PM
    The interesting biography of King Trisong Detsen, the second Dharma-king of Tibet, who truly established Buddhism in the Land of Snow . King Trisong Detsen, the 38th Yarlung King, had ruled over Tibet from 754 CE to 799 CE. He was the monarch responsible for the official adoption of Buddhism as the state religion of Tibet. It was due to his efforts that the great masters came from India and established Buddhism firmly in Tibet. He was also the king who invited nine royal physicians from neighbouring countries and laid the foundation of Tibetan medicine. Interesting read.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/trisong-detsen-the-great-dharma-king-of-tibet.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 9. 2022 12:46 PM
    The Great Buddha of Kamakura ,is a bronze statue of Amida Buddha, which stands on the grounds of Kotokuin Temple in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, a temple belonging to the Jodo Sect of Buddhism. Wow…. it has long been the second tallest bronze Buddha statue in Japan,with a height of 11.4 meters. It is one of Japan’s most fascinating historical landmarks where thousands of tourist from all over the world visited yearly. The statue is an iconic sight and most visited by tourist in the area. Merely looking at this huge statue tells all and a blessing indeed.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing of a BIG Buddha Statue.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/daibutsuthe-great-buddha-of-kamakura.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 9. 2022 12:45 PM
    Found this old inspiring video briefly showing our Lama HE Tsem Rinpoche ‘s life and the stories behind Kechara organization. Interesting….. Beautiful and meaningful video.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this video.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/world-peace-by-tsem-tulku-rinpoche.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 9. 2022 12:44 PM
    The Dharma Bums were a U.S. garage band, formed in 1987 in Portland, Oregon, United States. The band had performed everywhere, and sing varies of subjects travelling around the world. The best is even Dharma songs as well revolving around Tibetan culture and religion. One of the band members is a long-time student of Tibetan Buddhism. Listening to the powerful Crystal Diamond Vajra Dakini, is a blessing.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/film-tv-music/dharma-bums.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Aug 7. 2022 03:05 PM
    Interesting spiritual journey of Venerable Longlian one of the best-known students of a famous religious leader of modern China. Venerable Longlian was a talented child, at the age of four she could read, write well and was fluent in Chinese poetry. She even could recite scriptures and Buddha’s name and had visited frequently to templesqith her grandparents. Ven. Longlian studied everything from poetry to Chinese medicine under famous teachers at that time. Received teachings from Tibetan scholars as well and took initiations of the three main Gelugpa tantric deities, Vajrabhairava, Guhyasamaja and Chakrasamvara from Changkya Khutukhtu, who was one of the highest authorities in the Gelugpa school of Tibetan Buddhism. She did composed more than 1000 poems, through her years.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Shin for this interesting write up of China’s most outstanding Bhiksuni.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/ven-longlian-modern-chinas-most-outstanding-bhiksuni.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Aug 7. 2022 03:02 PM
    In the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, monastic vows are for life. But somehow Ci’en temple in Zhejiang province offers three-month course and part-time vows recently. Situated in the luxurious forest, Ci’en temple a small temple remains its charm with impressive landscape and Buddhist culture. The Buddhist temple decided to offer admission to civilians who wanted to experience a monk’s life, only to be overwhelmed with applicants. It’s a small temple , hence only those were interested in Buddhism were given a chance. Participants of the program will live as monks in the temple free of charge. They will learn about Buddhist culture, read its scriptures and will also perform all Buddhist activities as arranged. It’s a good training ground to live as a monk or nun to cultivate minds.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Shin for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/ven-longlian-modern-chinas-most-outstanding-bhiksuni.html

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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,
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Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
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Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
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One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
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Height: 33ft (10m)
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Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
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Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
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Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
3 years ago
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat's land here in Malaysia
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
3 years ago
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
3 years ago
Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
3 years ago
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
3 years ago
The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
Sacred Vajra Yogini
3 years ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
3 years ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
3 years ago
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.
3 years ago
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.
3 years ago
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.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
3 years ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
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
3 years ago
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
This is pretty amazing!

First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
3 years ago
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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
3 years ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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
3 years 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 years 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 years 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 years 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 years ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
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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
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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 yearss ago
    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
  • 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
    3 yearss 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
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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.
    3 yearss 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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    3 yearss ago
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    Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
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CHAT PICTURES

Is this where Rinpoche received the thangkha of Dream Manjushri?
3 weeks ago
Is this where Rinpoche received the thangkha of Dream Manjushri?
Is this the ruins of Zimkhang Gongma established by Panchen Sonam Drakpa. -Choong
3 weeks ago
Is this the ruins of Zimkhang Gongma established by Panchen Sonam Drakpa. -Choong
We hold our DS puja weekly without fail. We welcome you to join us. Penang DS puja @ 3pm~ by Jacinta
3 weeks ago
We hold our DS puja weekly without fail. We welcome you to join us. Penang DS puja @ 3pm~ by Jacinta
DS PUJA @ Penang. A close up of the offerings. What a feast! #Throwback 23/7/2022.
3 weeks ago
DS PUJA @ Penang. A close up of the offerings. What a feast! #Throwback 23/7/2022.
#Throwback 23/7/2022. Our weekly DS puja attendees. All of us were getting ready to invite Buddhas to come forth, joining and blessing us during DS puja. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
3 weeks ago
#Throwback 23/7/2022. Our weekly DS puja attendees. All of us were getting ready to invite Buddhas to come forth, joining and blessing us during DS puja. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
#Throwback23/7/2022 Welcoming Buddha Shakyamuni, Gyenze, Shize & Namgyalma to Penang chapel. Abundance offerings, including sensory offerings were nicely set up and offered up to Buddha surfing our weekly DS puja @ 3pm, Jalan Seang Tek, Penang ~by Jacinta
3 weeks ago
#Throwback23/7/2022 Welcoming Buddha Shakyamuni, Gyenze, Shize & Namgyalma to Penang chapel. Abundance offerings, including sensory offerings were nicely set up and offered up to Buddha surfing our weekly DS puja @ 3pm, Jalan Seang Tek, Penang ~by Jacinta
Kechara Earth Project 17 July 2022
4 weeks ago
Kechara Earth Project 17 July 2022
Kechara Earth Project 12 June 2022
2 months ago
Kechara Earth Project 12 June 2022
#Throwback. Visitation of Ven. Zawa Tulku Rinpoche and Ven. Geshe Jangchup Gyaltsen to Kechara Penang Chapel on 17/5/2022. We did a short prayers together. Really happy for the short visit. Kechara Penang Study Group~ by Jacinta
3 months ago
#Throwback. Visitation of Ven. Zawa Tulku Rinpoche and Ven. Geshe Jangchup Gyaltsen to Kechara Penang Chapel on 17/5/2022. We did a short prayers together. Really happy for the short visit. Kechara Penang Study Group~ by Jacinta
Photo from JC
3 months ago
Photo from JC
Trying to WE-fie. Do we get that just alright, lol? Come and join us next time at Jalan Seang Tek, Kechara Penang Chapel. Celebrate Wesak with us ~ by Jacinta
3 months ago
Trying to WE-fie. Do we get that just alright, lol? Come and join us next time at Jalan Seang Tek, Kechara Penang Chapel. Celebrate Wesak with us ~ by Jacinta
Trying to "WE-fie". Do we get that just alright, lol? Come and join us next time at Jalan Seang Tek, Kechara Penang Chapel. Celebrate Wesak with us ~ by Jacinta
3 months ago
Trying to "WE-fie". Do we get that just alright, lol? Come and join us next time at Jalan Seang Tek, Kechara Penang Chapel. Celebrate Wesak with us ~ by Jacinta
Celebrated Wesak Day 2022 in Penang, with a group of fun, committed, helpful and also devoted friends & family. Kechara Penang Study Group 15/5/2022 ~by Jacinta
3 months ago
Celebrated Wesak Day 2022 in Penang, with a group of fun, committed, helpful and also devoted friends & family. Kechara Penang Study Group 15/5/2022 ~by Jacinta
Vesak Day 2022 - Bird liberation. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
3 months ago
Vesak Day 2022 - Bird liberation. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
All attendees are paying homage to Rinpoche and Buddhas before the start of our weekly Dorje Shugden puja. Outwardly, it seems that Dorje Shugden helps practitioners overcoming their obstacles and problems but ultimately Dorje Shugden’s supreme purpose is to help practitioners on their path to Enlightenment. Do join in our weekly DS puja, every Saturday @3 pm at Jalan Seang Tek, Penang. ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
All attendees are paying homage to Rinpoche and Buddhas before the start of our weekly Dorje Shugden puja. Outwardly, it seems that Dorje Shugden helps practitioners overcoming their obstacles and problems but ultimately Dorje Shugden’s supreme purpose is to help practitioners on their path to Enlightenment. Do join in our weekly DS puja, every Saturday @3 pm at Jalan Seang Tek, Penang. ~by Jacinta
All of us are practicing on how to properly use dorje(Vajra), bell and damaru ~ Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
4 months ago
All of us are practicing on how to properly use dorje(Vajra), bell and damaru ~ Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
After inviting Dorje Shugden Wangze, Pastor Seng Piow teaches us how to use ritual objects and the full set of prayer accompanying it. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
After inviting Dorje Shugden Wangze, Pastor Seng Piow teaches us how to use ritual objects and the full set of prayer accompanying it. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
With great happiness, merits and excitement that Penang Group have invited Buddha Wangzey to Penang chapel, complete with full rituals and prayer. 30th April 2022 Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
With great happiness, merits and excitement that Penang Group have invited Buddha Wangzey to Penang chapel, complete with full rituals and prayer. 30th April 2022 Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
Come and get your blessing from Lama Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden in Penang @ Jalan Seang Tek ~ by Jacinta.
4 months ago
Come and get your blessing from Lama Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden in Penang @ Jalan Seang Tek ~ by Jacinta.
Special thanks to one of our dedicated Penang group members, Choong for superb tormas. Swift Return Puja @ every Saturday, 3pm. Do contact William for more info ~ by Jacinta
4 months ago
Special thanks to one of our dedicated Penang group members, Choong for superb tormas. Swift Return Puja @ every Saturday, 3pm. Do contact William for more info ~ by Jacinta
Thanks to William for being the Umze for Swift Return Puja at Penang Centre. ~ by Jacinta
4 months ago
Thanks to William for being the Umze for Swift Return Puja at Penang Centre. ~ by Jacinta
The members of Kechara Penang Study Group are offering serkym to Dorje Shugden and His entourage. There's puja every Saturday @ 3 pm at Penang Chapel, Jalan Seang Tek. All are welcome. ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
The members of Kechara Penang Study Group are offering serkym to Dorje Shugden and His entourage. There's puja every Saturday @ 3 pm at Penang Chapel, Jalan Seang Tek. All are welcome. ~by Jacinta
We are in the third week of Ramadan this year, and kind volunteers have never failed to feed people in need since Tengku Zatashah started this meaningful #zerofoodwastage initiative in 2016. The aim is to benefit the underprivileged with nice surplus food collected from Ramadan buffets. Every night during the month of Ramadan, volunteers collect surplus cooked food from hotels and distribute it to charity homes and low-income families. THANK YOU, Tengku, dedicated volunteers and hotel partners, for making this Ramadan special for the underprivileged. #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment - KSK @ Vivian
4 months ago
We are in the third week of Ramadan this year, and kind volunteers have never failed to feed people in need since Tengku Zatashah started this meaningful #zerofoodwastage initiative in 2016. The aim is to benefit the underprivileged with nice surplus food collected from Ramadan buffets. Every night during the month of Ramadan, volunteers collect surplus cooked food from hotels and distribute it to charity homes and low-income families. THANK YOU, Tengku, dedicated volunteers and hotel partners, for making this Ramadan special for the underprivileged. #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment - KSK @ Vivian
We were chanting Migsetma mantra at the time this picture was taken. Thanks to all our Penang members who are very committed to attend Swift Return puja weekly. Kechara Penang Study Group, every Saturday @ 3pm. ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
We were chanting Migsetma mantra at the time this picture was taken. Thanks to all our Penang members who are very committed to attend Swift Return puja weekly. Kechara Penang Study Group, every Saturday @ 3pm. ~by Jacinta
William, who is our leader/ Umze is cleaning the pantry and Gordon offered up 4 carton of packet drinks today. We cannot thank you enough for all kind hearted who sponsored various offerings weekly. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
William, who is our leader/ Umze is cleaning the pantry and Gordon offered up 4 carton of packet drinks today. We cannot thank you enough for all kind hearted who sponsored various offerings weekly. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
Siew Hong came with a basket of fruits while Choong, who is expert in baking offered tormas today for our Swift Return Puja. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
4 months ago
Siew Hong came with a basket of fruits while Choong, who is expert in baking offered tormas today for our Swift Return Puja. Kechara Penang Study Group ~by Jacinta
Dedicated sisters, Sharyn and Swee Bee. They always make sure our puja offerings, especially fruits are arranged nicely. Kechara Penang Study Group ~ by Jacinta
4 months ago
Dedicated sisters, Sharyn and Swee Bee. They always make sure our puja offerings, especially fruits are arranged nicely. Kechara Penang Study Group ~ by Jacinta
Committed and hardworking Kechara Penang members, Mr. Tang and Mr. Huey. Really appreciate having you both at our weekly puja . Kechara Penang Study Group ~ by Jacinta
4 months ago
Committed and hardworking Kechara Penang members, Mr. Tang and Mr. Huey. Really appreciate having you both at our weekly puja . Kechara Penang Study Group ~ by Jacinta
KSK medic personnel have been tending to the needs of the clients every week. Their consistent kindness helps improve the medical welfare of those without a home. Thank you for serving and making them your priority on your weekends. #medicteam #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment
5 months ago
KSK medic personnel have been tending to the needs of the clients every week. Their consistent kindness helps improve the medical welfare of those without a home. Thank you for serving and making them your priority on your weekends. #medicteam #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment
In the midst of chaos, let's start healing. We have Dorje Shugden Puja every Saturday @ 3 pm. Contact William for more info. Kechara Penang Study Group. ~ by Jacinta.
5 months ago
In the midst of chaos, let's start healing. We have Dorje Shugden Puja every Saturday @ 3 pm. Contact William for more info. Kechara Penang Study Group. ~ by Jacinta.
5 months ago
Pastor is in da' house!!!! Kechara Penang Study Group @ Saturday, 3 pm. Contact William for more info ~ by Jacinta
5 months ago
Pastor is in da' house!!!! Kechara Penang Study Group @ Saturday, 3 pm. Contact William for more info ~ by Jacinta
5 months ago
7 months ago
After Dorje Shugden puja @Penang Chapel, Jalan Seang Tek, members went to a nearby vegetarian shop for gathering. #CNY2022 #HappyReunion by Jacinta.
7 months ago
After Dorje Shugden puja @Penang Chapel, Jalan Seang Tek, members went to a nearby vegetarian shop for gathering. #CNY2022 #HappyReunion by Jacinta.
In 2021, we've encountered far too many challenges—Pandemic, months-long lockdown, landslide, and flood. We are proud to witness Malaysians helping one another as these agonies come sequentially. Looking back to 2021, Kechara Soup Kitchen has made significant progress, with more to come in 2022. Every year, we move a little closer to our vision. We are immensely thankful to have such dedicated teams of volunteers willing to go above and beyond for our clients. Not to mention our sponsors and donors; none of this would have been possible without you. Thank you. Thank you for being you. Thank you for helping the underprivileged to a better future. Have a blessed year ahead from our hearts to your hearts. #2022 #newyear #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment
7 months ago
In 2021, we've encountered far too many challenges—Pandemic, months-long lockdown, landslide, and flood. We are proud to witness Malaysians helping one another as these agonies come sequentially. Looking back to 2021, Kechara Soup Kitchen has made significant progress, with more to come in 2022. Every year, we move a little closer to our vision. We are immensely thankful to have such dedicated teams of volunteers willing to go above and beyond for our clients. Not to mention our sponsors and donors; none of this would have been possible without you. Thank you. Thank you for being you. Thank you for helping the underprivileged to a better future. Have a blessed year ahead from our hearts to your hearts. #2022 #newyear #kecharasoupkitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment
Ipoh members were taking turns to offer Serkym and lights to Dorje Shugden. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
8 months ago
Ipoh members were taking turns to offer Serkym and lights to Dorje Shugden. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Kechara Ipoh members were preparing for Dorje Shugden puja. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
8 months ago
Kechara Ipoh members were preparing for Dorje Shugden puja. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Kechara Ipoh Study Group has carried out Dorje Shugden puja in Ipoh on 4th Dec 2021. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
8 months ago
Kechara Ipoh Study Group has carried out Dorje Shugden puja in Ipoh on 4th Dec 2021. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Jun, our new Ipoh member, offered lights to Lama Tsongkhapa, Dorje Shugden & The Three Jewels. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
9 months ago
Jun, our new Ipoh member, offered lights to Lama Tsongkhapa, Dorje Shugden & The Three Jewels. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
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Dorje Shugden
Click to watch my talk about Dorje Shugden....