3/1/11

TIBET...

We loved our visit to Tibet!  The people are so unique and friendly.  The mountains are stunning.
 Tibet is the highest region on the earth with an average elevation of 16,000 ft.  We didn't suffer from the high altitude but did find climbing hundred's of steps to the Monasteries a challenge.  Were glad we did this trip while we were still young. :) 
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It is an amazing sight to see the pilgrims mumbling mantras and swinging their prayer wheels throughout town.  The temples are full of juniper incense and yak butter.  There is a peace in Tibet.

At one time the DREPUNG MONASTERY was the world's largest monastery housing over 10,000 monks.  There are currently 1,700 monasteries in Tibet.



Pilgrims travel thousands of miles bringing meat and vegetables to sell in Llasa to pay for their trip to the JOKHANG TEMPLE.  

In the Temple they spoon yak butter into lamps, drape white and yellow gauze strips around statues and leave money and grains as offerings.

Pilgrims pray in front of the Temples and on the roads leading to the Temples.  We'd be walking through town and pilgrims would be praying on both sides of us.  Some wear knee pads, gloves and wooden planks attached to their hands.  They lower themselves to the ground by stretching forward, then back on their feet taking two steps forward and repeating the process all day.

It isn't uncommon to have children approach you for money.  They are so adorable it's hard to say no.

This is one of my favorite pictures.  I love the details in this little girls outfit.  Notice the striped socks and the Turquoise braided into her hair.  I wanted to pinch her cheeks and take her home with me.  

BARKHOR STREET is the popular shopping area in Llasa.  Each day hundred's of booths are set up with items that can only be found in Tibet.  I had so much fun bargaining (it's expected) on beautiful Turquoise and Coral Jewelry 

Some Tibetan women wear their hair in 108 Braids, an auspicious number in Buddhism.

Prayer Wheels are used to gain wisdom and good karma and keep bad karma away.  Hmm...wonder if I could carry this up and down the aisle on certain flights?


Today 70 percent of the people in Llasa are Chinese and only 30 percent are Tibetan.




The Portola Palace is a masterpiece in Tibetan architecture and a reflection of Tibetan history and culture.  The palace is full of sculptures, scripture, murals, Buddha figures and antiques.  The PORTOLA PALACE was home to the Dali Lama until 1950 when the country was taken over by China.  

When we visited Tibet a few years ago we couldn't enter the country without a tour guide.  Our guide was Chinese and wasn't aloud to discuss any issues regarding China invading Tibet.  
Tibetans are beautiful people with a beautiful culture.  We were so taken by the people that when I saw these beautiful paintings of Tibetan children I knew we had to have them...

Read more about our trip through China here.  


My favorite Mementos!
The artist takes pictures of children around Llasa then paints them.

 The artist of these beautiful pictures

Goodbye Tibet!

5 comments:

Susie of Arabia said...

Wonderful post! Great photos and fantastic commentary. Can you tell - I really enjoyed it!!! But I've got to say, some religious people perform some really strange rituals...

The Flying Pinto said...

Wow...you really need to put together a book of your travel pics!! You have amazing photos...I would buy it:)

dutchbaby said...

I am so envious you went to Tibet. I hope to visit there one day. Your photos are fantastic. I especially like the decorations to tie the 108 braids together. Very special post, Sherri!

Harper Cosper said...

Oh wow, it must have been very beautiful. How long was your visit in the country? And what was the most memorable part of the experience? I hope the haggling came easy!

Sherri said...

Hi Harper. I was in Tibet for I think 4 days. My favorite part of my trip was experiencing the Tibetan culture and to see the beautiful people. I love the way they dress and decorate their hair. I also loved visiting the Monastery's and Temples.