Friday, February 27, 2015

Holy Yatra to the Abode of Lord Shiva -15

 Start of Parikrama 

The view of Kailash on way to Darchen from Zaidi 

The predominant goal of all the yatris undertaking this  Holy yatra are three fold. They are darshan of the Holy Mt Kasilash,  A Holy bath in Lake Manasarovar and parikrama of Mt. Kailash.  We were blessed with the first two, so we conducted homams on the shore of Manasarovar and thanked Shivasakthi for their benevelence and started to darchen the base camp for Kailash kora.  

We traveled in the luxury bus of Tibet and had a nice darshan of the south face of the Lord and also the east face and its extension. 

During most of the time we are blessed with the darshan of the south face only. We get the darshanof Esat face combined with south mostly from a distance. One will get the darshan of West and North faces only during the first day's parikrama. 

 Changing contours of Mt.Kailash

As we approached Darchen we got a very Good darshan of south and east faces, but slowly cloud cover and enveloped the Lord. 

Once a sleepy village Darchen has now transformed into a town with all facilities for yatris. there are 5 star hotels for Europeans and supermarkets shelling out whatever is needed for yatri's are there. Slowly a Holy place is being converted into a commercial centre. 

The wonderful darshan we got as we entered Darchen 

It seemed as if the Lord is blessing us with His eyes open, you can easily visualize the eye brows, eyes, nose and mouth of the Lord

Just we enquired the tariff in this hotel it was   Rs `10000/-  per day . 

There is a administrative building in Darchen also and the security check is also strict with X-ray machines and frisking. We stayed for half day at Darchen. Some of the yatris developed complications due to High altitude and they opted out of Parikrama and decided to stay at Darchen itself.

Towards Darpoche 

As 2014 was the year of Horse in Chinese tradition, considered to be one of the holiest years. there was heavy rush. It is believed that the Kora done during this year is equuivalent to 12 Koras and one who completes Kora during the Horse year is entitiled fdor Inner Kora.   Because of heavy rush and locals undertaking the Kora themselves there were no porters available and the horse man himself carried the bags and so they charged Rs 25000/- this year for three days. Some of teh yatris employed pony for parikrama. 

 Darpoche the place from where the parikrama started.

Because of the modernization you can see solar panels and cellphone towers in Darpoche and also all along the parikrama route, the pony handlers were carrying smart phones and were contacting their colleagues throughout the parikrama route and were listening to songs in their cellphones. 

The south face of  Kailash is clearly visible from here but   clouds have obscured the view today. 

Ready for parikrama 

Kumarasamy, Elangovan, Muruganandam, Rajan

Chinnapaapaiah, Chandra and Nagammal Kumari

Yam Dwar

The gate way to Devabhoomi 

This small stupa fashioned like a  gate is called as Yam dwar the gate of king of death. the portion to the north of the gate is considered as the land of celestials and it is believed that one who enters the gate and prostrate to Lord Shiva need not fear death. 

The yam dwar is decorated heavily  with prayer flags this year

Saga Dawa flagpost 

Sky burial site and samadhi of 84 Mahasiddhas  on the background

 This tall flag post is changed every year on Buddha Poornima day. It is the day of the birth, enlightenment and nirvana of Buddha( Sakhiya Muni) which Hindus call as Vaisakh  Poornima. The Saga Dawa festival is celebrated every year with great fanfare every year and is attended by   many pilgrims . 

The prayer flags are tied to special places like bridges, passes and summits. They are rectangular piece of fabric ranging from the size of a postcard to very large size. They are in five colors namely blue, white, red,  green and yellow  representing the five elements namely sky, air, fire, water and earth respectively. The figure of horse or mantras are printed in them, to be blown by the wind all over the world to bless them. 

Ponies in   waiting  

The goods are still transported using yaks

Most of the yatris of our group decided to undertake the parikrama by walk and some of them opted for ponies. WE entered the Yamdwar and prostrated before the Lord praying HIm to help us to complete the parikrma  and started our parikrama. Let us see what happened during the firsy day of parikrama in the next post. 

The yatra continues .  .  .  .  .  . . 

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