Doesn’t sometimes seem absolutely mind boggling that we actually walk, talk, eat and sleep on a huge ball? And it’s spinning so fast around its axis! And it’s whirling at a stunning speed around the sun! And is part of a galaxy that’s wizzing inside space to god knows where! How can anyone be ever bored knowing this??
Day 81 of 365~
Images taken today at EKO- Haus, Japanese garden in Duesseldorf
All over Asia where Buddhism abounds, the saffron color pops up worn by monks to symbolize their simplicity and detachment from materialism. They always look amazing in photographs and they are so kind to humor tourists and photographers.
Is it in the temples of Asia, or the mountain churches of Lebanon, the faraway tribes of Africa, or the monasteries of tibet? Is it in mosques? Is it with soothsayers? Is it with the self proclaimed healers and seers? Is it in the holy cities of our world? Is it in the secret science labs? Do our world leaders possess it?
Or is it inside each one of us waiting to be touched?
going inwards to find it~ Jade Buddha Temple~ Shanghai
We might declare our allegiance to a religion or to a non-religion, but either way, there will be moments in our lives when we just feel the need to close our eyes, turn inwards and try desperately to connect to something bigger, greater and more knowing than we are. No matter how amazing and above it all we feel and think we are, the fragility of our very mortality will at some point in our lives humble us to the greatness of what caused us to be in the first place, regardless of what we may call it.
Nature always finds a way to erode away human traces on its surfaces around the planet. In the temples of Angkor Wat, like in this old one in Ta Prohm, nature’s ways are not very subtle. The magnificent banyan trees just march over the great temples with their large trunks and extend their roots to wrap them around the great rocks and squeeze them till they simply fall apart under the intense pressure. And no matter how many times humans try to cut the trees and free the ruins, the trees just keep coming back. Such are the mysterious ways of the jungle temples of Cambodia. In these places you don’t have to squint or extend your arms to try and feel any energies or vibrations of mystery, because it all stares you straight in the face and if you stand there long enough, it just might warp you in its powerful grip.
Finding yourself in a temple like Ta Prohm with its mysterious stone structures, the large banyan trees that are reclaiming the architecture and devouring it back into the earth is a kind of mystical experience. I was there wandering between the ancient walls when I heard a rustle behind the trees, I looked over and I saw a beautiful pair of eyes following me around. I approached slowly and a slow exchange began to happen between the little girl who owned those eyes and me. The hesitancy gradually gave way to smiles, the distrust to trust and we ended up walking together silently. At the end of my visit, the little fairy of Ta Prohm granted me the chance of a portrait to treasure for years to come.
The Bayon, an exquisite temple of great significance. Constructed in the 12th century to face exactly east and roads lead to it directly from the gates at each of the city’s cardinal points, this Buddhist shrine still vibrates with accumulated potency. I visited it a little before sunrise and found myself alone safe for the monks that never stop praying on the grounds of the beautiful temple. Carved with great detail and attention, adorned with many stone faces, built on many intricate levels, this place is haunting and shrouded with mystery.
No matter how prepared you are when visiting Cambodia and despite all the photos you may have seen, meeting the stone buddha heads and faces in the jungles of Siem Reap can be an astounding experience. There is a great serenity in those faces, a wonderful calm even with the sense of eeriness, and they raise hundreds of questions in the mind of any visitor.
Even when the temples are in a state of ruin and natural erosion and deterioration, Siem Reap is visited by thousands of monks who continue to pay homage in this historical place. Something religious is very alive and well in Cambodia and it is quite difficult to miss.