Walk along the Nepal capital
• Walk on the capital of Nepal
Moscow - Delhi - Kathmandu - Tibet. So we went to Tibet. The main stopping point was the capital of Nepal - Kathmandu, where we transplanted in the car and drove up to the border with Tibet. In Kathmandu we had only half a day, and it was time to see as much as possible.
Arrival at Delhi airport and waiting for a local flight to Kathmandu in the transit zone.
The flight to Kathmandu takes 1, 5 hours, but due to the rainy season, we circled over the city for nearly 40 minutes.
When you come out of the plane, a feeling that immediately fell into a melted bath. Breathe, fog, drizzle.
In Nepal, almost martial law because of the recent conflicts Maoists against King Gyanendra. The king was deprived of power, and now Nepal officially became a republic.
The streets are very dirty and cramped. Pedestrians and cars moving on the same street, the movement of right-hand, but on the road so much chaos going on, that this is not even noticeable.
We checked into the hotel and went sightseeing.
Our main aim was to catch the Swayambhu stupa and Bodnath. We took a taxi, which for $ 40 us the Catalog into the evening. As it turned out, we were able to chip and $ 10, and 2, and that would be enough.
First on the list was the Swayambhu stupa, or Svayambhunath. It is located on the outskirts of Kathmandu on the hill. To climb it, you need to go through a steep staircase of 365 steps, the number of days in the year. But in the bottom of the start to meet the different structures of the complex. Or, for example, a fountain with Buddha Shakyamuni at the center. Here, as elsewhere, throw coins, but not in the water, and try to get a coin on a lotus, on which stands a Buddha.
The statue of Buddha looking at the four cardinal points.
Scepter "Vajra" (Dorje Tibetan.) - in Buddhism it symbolizes on the one hand, the original perfect nature awakened mind, like a diamond in its indestructibility. A diamond beauty and the game of rainbow light on its faces symbolize the qualities of the enlightened mind: intuitive wisdom, courage, supreme joy, active generous sympathy and love.
On the other hand, represents vajras Awakening itself, like the acquisition of which the instantaneous flash of lightning
They say that the stupa is rotated by 60 degrees with respect to the cardinal. Once upon a time, the valley was a lake, the hill - an island, and our planet rotates at a different angle, and side light were not there, where now. One of the last of the Buddhas, Buddha Shikhin, tossed here lotus seed that bloomed after 80 centuries, and around this flower built the first stupa.
In order to benefit from the visit Swayambhu, you need to make the bark - around it in a clockwise direction, while rotating the prayer wheels.
Buddha eyes on the stupa. It is believed that the stupa - is the embodiment of our body, speech and mind.
Nepal flag with the symbol of the Kalachakra.
Swayambhu - the most sacred place in Kathmandu. Seventh Dalai Lama said that this stupa - a source of happiness around the world.
The mandala of Manjushri near the stupa. Huge scepter "Vajra" symbolizes here Dharmadhatu - "space of all phenomena."
The Holy everything, even what is underfoot.
On the right and left of the Swayambhu several centuries ago, two Hindu temple-shikhara were erected. There is a prophecy that "there will come when the stupa two canines" to begin the decline of Buddhism in Nepal. Buddhists believe that the prophecy refers precisely to this Shikhar (because of the shape of temples resemble fangs), and, of course, is not very happy with this neighborhood.
With Stupa a great view of the valley of Kathmandu.
Near Swayambhu can visit several monasteries, which professed Tibetan Buddhism.
oil lamp can light in the temple. Their light dispels the darkness of our own ignorance and creates clarity and wisdom.
Torm - sculptures of dough ornaments, fashioned from oil. In Tibetan Buddhism, they are used as offerings to the Buddhas.
Another offering - the mandala, which symbolizes the entire universe with Mount Meru in the center.
The Buddhist Library different from those to which we are accustomed. Books are kept wrapped in a special cloth, and to quickly find, on the "tongues" they write their name.
In a small building (it is currently being renovated), is one of the hidden places of power Chakrasamvara Buddhist deity. An ordinary person may only enter into the inner courtyard, where you can meditate and make offerings. Here you can see the wall murals, which are several hundred years (although modern lovers perpetuate his name in chalk also tried). And behind the door, which is normally shut undergo Only Newari craftsmen practicing tantra Chakrasamvara. Inside there is a five-level mandala of the deity.
If you are tired of doing the bark around the stupa, you can look at one of the restaurants nearby.
Dine offers on the first floor, where supposedly a good view.
However, dining out, do not get distracted, otherwise the local monkeys will steal your food.
Swayambhu often called Monkey Temple. Here they are really very much. The owners of some restaurants are forced to defend themselves against these thieves using broken glass. I must say that they have a lot of problems and a lot of dirt. In some places, the temple complex, even impossible to breathe, so they are shitting where they want.
Near the stupa you can buy various souvenirs and necessary for Buddhist practice items. This trader is selling beads for rosaries.
As in India, for Hindus the cow - a sacred animal, it is allowed to go anywhere. But here they are much smaller.
The second business card Kathmandu - Stupa Bodnath. It is also situated on the outskirts, but on the other side of the city.
Bodnath built in the fifth century. It is the tallest stupa in Kathmandu, more than 40 meters high.
Stores around the stupa.
The lions guarding the entrance.
In ancient times there ran a trade route from Tibet to India, and this place served as a refuge for travelers.
As in other places, you first need to get around a stupa clockwise.
Prayer flags that attracted tens of meters over the entire territory of the stupa.
Vajra bells represent the feminine principle of perfect wisdom, directly comprehending emptiness (sunyata).
Stoves, incense burners, which are constantly harness Sang - incense as a herbal powder.
After a full circle and you can climb to the "second floor" - a stupa built in the form of terraces. Square at the base, they symbolize the earth element.
The round dome symbolizes the element of water, spire - fire and umbrella on the steeple - air.
Puja held here, even in the hottest time.
Crossed Vajra - a perfect symbol of the indestructibility of mind and perfect wisdom of spontaneous activity of all the Buddhas.
After spending time with benefit, we went to Thamel, the area for tourists, where you can buy cheap all things necessary for tracking. Later in the afternoon we returned to the hotel.
Early in the morning we have already been waiting for the machine on which we reached the Nepal-China border.
The only wide road in Kathmandu.
At 5 am all get up and start doing exercises on the streets - from schoolchildren to soldiers until the heat of the day began.
Valley View from the cafe where we stopped to eat on the way to Tibet.
The local farmland.
A Farewell to Kathmandu.
Photo: Ekaterina Ageev / Text: Sergei Martynov