Archive for January, 2011

31
Jan
11

Bagan – Splendour of Myanmar

Bagan - Myanmar

 

Bagan (also spelled Pagan) is an archaeological zone of more than 2.200 temples and pagodas on the eastern bank of the Ayeyarwady River, 90 miles southwest of Mandalay in Burma.

This 26-square-mile region was the capital of the ancient kings of Bagan, who filled the plain with as many as 4.400 temples to earn religious merit during the height of the kingdom (11th and 13th centuries).

Although less well-known because of the rocky political situation in Myanmar, Bagan easily stands with Angkor and Borobudur as one of the most significant and memorable archeological sites of Southeast Asia.

Bagan - Myanmar

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30
Jan
11

The Royal roads of Angkor Wat – Cambodia

Angkor Wat CambodiaAngkor Wat (“City Temple”) is a vast temple complex near Siem Reap, about 200 miles from the capital of Phnom Penh in Cambodia. Built in the 12th century by the king of the prosperous Khmer empire, Angkor Wat was built as a royal temple dedicated to a Hindu deity.

After the city of Angkor fell to invaders, Angkor Wat receded into the jungle but continued as a Buddhist temple and a pilgrimage site over the centuries.

Angkor Wat is the best preserved example of Khmer architecture in Cambodia and is so grand in design that some rank it among the seven wonders of the world. It appears on the Cambodian national flag, a very rare instance of a flag incorporating an image of a building.

The “lost city” of Angkor first attracted the interest of Europeans in the 1800s after Cambodia was colonized by the French. Today, Angkor Wat continues to draw thousands of visitors anxious to see this remarkable ancient temple in the jungle.

In addition to many tourists, Buddhist monks are daily visitors to Angkor Wat, their bright orange robes making a vivid contrast with the grey stone of the temple.

 

29
Jan
11

Luang Prabang: A Buddhist Town of Alms Giving

Alms giving in Luang Prabang 

Luang Prabang is a small town near the confluence of the Mekong River and its tributary the Nam Khane. The Lan Xang kingdom unified the country of Laos in the 14th century and Luang Prabang became its capital. The town since then has been known as a Mecca for Theravada Buddhism, also known as Hinayama Buddhism. The influence of this early form of Buddhism resulted in 80 monasteries in the town.

It is 6 in the morning. The monks are doing an alms-round: a morning practice. People in town come out to the street and wait for the monks. Luang Prabang has approximately 16000 people and around 1200 monks, almost 10% of the total population. The alms processions of Buddhist monks take place every day. The townspeople are devout Buddhists, they place sticky rice into the alms bowls.

The people say: The monks represent the Buddha. They inspire good deeds and are a way of venerating ancestors.

The food received during the alms round is to become their breakfast. Meals are taken twice in the morning, after midday they are only allowed to drink water.

 

28
Jan
11

Buddhist wisdoms

Young monk in Myanmar  

         You can travel through distant    

          countries,

          You can travel through time,

          through virtual worlds or

          through your own imagination.

          In Buddhism they experience

           life itself as a voyage.              

                                                                                                                                                            

Since a few years, I got fascinated and emotionally touched by Buddhist quotes.

That’s why this topic got a specific place on my website.

This page is named “Wisdom of the week” and offers you some quotes with wisdoms to think over.

27
Jan
11

Happy birthday Shyam!

Today it’s one of my best friends’ birthday.

Shyam Karki is living with his family in Kathmandu – Nepal and has always been my loyal guide during my different photo trips to Nepal.

Even though his main job has been changed from guide to director of a private school for some years now, he’s still accompanying me whenever I visit his wonderful country.

I really appreciate he’s always taking some time free to guide me around whenever I come to Nepal. My last visit dates from 2009 when we were enjoying together a trekking around the Annapurna mountain range area.

Thanks for everything you ‘ve been doing for me and make sure you’re enjoying your special day together with your family, friends and beloved ones. In my thoughts I will be present at your birthday party.

Shyam Karki at Poon Hill

26
Jan
11

Travel Magazine “Grands Reportages”

Cover 'Grands Reportages' January 2011

The French travel magazine “Grands Reportages” published in his January 2011 edition an overview of Buddhist destinations.

“Travelling on Buddhist land” is a stunning publication with amazing photography and detailed information about my favorite Asian destinations such as Nepal, Tibet, Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.

The January 2011 edition of “Grands Reportages” is for sale in the better bookshops and costs 6,00 €.

I can advise this magazine for each passionate photographer and traveler.