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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Before Enlightenment

After the second day at the LBCS, Leigh, Myriam, Kapil and Dinu and I headed out to the cave where Buddha meditated prior to enlightenment. This was the end of his extreme ascetic practices and there is a statue of Siddhartha Gautama in his emaciated state to commemorate that period.

I won't repeat the story which has been told many times, but you can read a brief account here:

What stands out in my mind is how almost biblical the feel of the terrain is. I can't explain, at all, the effect of being there had on me. Sitting in the cave where Gautama had meditated (along with a bunch of others who were listening to a dhamma discourse) was rather magical.
The hill where the cave is found across a small stretch of sand.

The view from the ascent.

Looking through a prayer flag.

On the way back as dusk encroaches.

Myriam and Leigh, the great pilgrims!

The banyan tree near Saraswati's shrine.

Saraswati's shrine.

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