It has been a while since I’ve updated this blog, as I’ve been on long-term travel. At the end of November 2010, I left for India to travel and go on a Buddhist pilgrimage. The pilgrimage started on December 1, 2010 and finished on December 19, 2010. Our group visited the four main sites in the Buddha’s life, which in chronological order are as follows: Lumbini, Bodh Gaya, Sarnath and Kushinagar. We also visited two other important places: Vulture’s Peak and Nalanda University.
I’ll explain very briefly why these places are important. First, Lumbini is actually located in southern Nepal and it is where the Buddha was born. Bodh Gaya is where he attained enlightenment. Sarnath is where he gave the first Buddhist teachings. Finally, Kushinagar is where he died. Vulture’s Peak is where he gave the third round of teachings and Nalanda University is where there was a very large Buddhist university.
After the pilgrimage was finished, I went on to Dharamsala in northern India, where I visited the Norbulingka Institute. I was there toward the end of December and then I went on to see textiles in Pushkar in the state of Rajasthan in western India. I spent New Year’s Eve in Pushkar and just after that I went on to Jaipur, which is the capital of the state of Rajasthan. I shopped for gifts in Jaipur, which is famous for jewelry and other arts and crafts. After Jaipur, I went back to New Delhi, which is where I stayed just before the pilgrimage. I was there for three days before flying back home on January 11, 2011. It was an amazing journey! I’m very glad I had the opportunity to do it.
For those who are interested, I’ve been posting pictures of my pilgrimage and travels to my Flickr page. The photos are in the Flickr widget on the right hand side of this blog. My Flickr name is CroDigTap.