Saturday, October 18, 2014

Mandalay, Myanmar

We're on our way to Mandalay for 2 nights.  It's supposed to take 2-4 hours but we'll see!

Here's how they do plumbing in Burma!  The drain pipe empties into a hole in the wall.  The floor is also slanted so the shower water drains away, or not!

Women nuns or dasasilia wear pink robes, shave their heads and take vows similar to male monks.  Nunhood isn't as prestigious as monkhood because nuns don't usually perform ceremonies with laypeople-

Buddhist temples and stuppas are everywhere-

Crossing the bridge into Mandalay-

So this is how you break a window!

Arriving at the hotel, we met Adam, who will be driving from now on.

I hopped on a scooter and visited the Mahamuni Paya (The Great Sage) Pagoda-

Only men are allowed to get close to the Buddha-

So the women worship from afar-

The Buddha is said to be one of five in the world true likenesses, the others being in India and Paradise.  Gold leaves are regularly applied to the Buddha's face, so now it is 6 inches thick.  He's 12.5 feet high and weighs 6.5 tonnes.

Monks wash Buddha's face and brush his teeth every morning at 4!  I didn't get to see that!

There are numerous shopping arcades in the corridors.  Here are prayer beads for each day of the week-

There are seven basic offerings in Buddhism.  Drinking water is offered to get rid of the suffering of thirst.  It is also hoped that all people will be filled with compassion and loving kindness.

There are many jars of water throughout the complex-

Flowers are offered to beautify the surroundings, but in the world of Buddha, everything is already beautiful.  They are really for the benefit of the person offering them, that they find noble forms to inhabit and attain enlightenment.

Incense is offered to get rid of nasty smells and to produce the scent of discipline which is apparently very pleasant!

Light is offered to purify ignorance.  It is hoped that knowledge and experience can manifest in all, as it has in Buddha and other people who are enlightened.  

Other buildings surrounding the Pagoda-

There are numerous fortune tellers and palm readers in the corridors-

An astrologer's office-

Carving a Buddha-

I hopped on another scooter in the pouring rain and went to Shwe in Bin Kyuang, a living monastery with over 30 monks.  It's made of teak, beautiful and so ornate!  You can see the rain!  I traded my flip flops for an umbrella (you have to remove your shoes at all pagodas/monasteries anyway).  My scooter man waited for me and then brought me back to the hotel.  I was literally dripping wet!  I could wring out my clothes!

So then, it was fun time!

We had a great night with lots of laughs, singing and guitar.

No comments:

Post a Comment

  Cancun, Mexico to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan,     December 31, 2023 I was up at 4:30 and walking to the bus depot by 5:30.  I wore my headlam...