Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Jokhang Temple, Lhasa, Tibet

Jokhang Temple is an important landmark for Tibet as it holds the history of the arrival of Buddhism in to Tibet. It is revered as the holiest place in Tibet and houses a precious relic of a Buddha statue brought by King Songtsen Gampo's second wife, Princess Wencheng, as a dowry. Wikipedia has a picture of the Buddha statue inside this hall where photography is not allowed.

Where Jokhang Temple is now standing, was once a lake. To read the story why they chose to fill the lake up to build the temple, click here and here.

Little pots of flowers arranged in a letter S-like trail

Stalls lined up in front of shops in the square before the Jokhang Temple.

A very tall pole covered with prayer flags. You can read more about prayer flags here.

In front of the temple is this building where lighted candles are placed.

Buddhists would stand in front of this building to offer their prayers

Buddism worshippers prostrating in front of the house of lighted candles

A furnace

Dried barley dough is placed on top of this drum-like structure for birds to feed on

Worshippers and pilgrims are praying. This is the open side of the temple. We got to enter into the temple and venture around the other storeys on the other side of the temple.

People sitting by the side near the temple and talking to one another

Man with a mat for performing his pilgrimage so as to avoid injury from repetitively postrating, standing and kneeling.

A boy performing his pilgrimage at Bakhor Market, which surrounds the temple

Entering Jokhang Temple from another entrance

Old wooden door

Water for washing

A little house where the monk sits inside and write prayers for the worshippers

Throne-like couch which the Dalai Lama sits on

View of the gilded roof and figurines from the central open hall

As we enter into the temple, there are usually images of the 4 Gods of the Heavenly Gates, two on each side.

On the highest floor of the Jokhang Temple, you will see the golden deers, the golden Dharma wheel as well as these two massive gold bells. Looking down here is where you will see the main cloister where the open hall is as shown in the earlier picture of people postrating.

The golden deers looking in adoration towards the golden Dharma wheel

Gift shop in the temple

Colourful door and wall

A trap door to close off passage down the stairs

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