Asia / Explore / Tibet

Seven Days in Tibet

SevendaysinTibet_thepersephoneperspective_travelblog2

The seven days I spent in Tibet haunt me. I dream often of thick clouds of incense smoke settling heavily on air that is thinned by extreme altitude. In my dreams, I am light headed again, I can’t catch a breath, and my heart is pounding with the sounds of monks chanting to the thrums of the drums and the wail of the horns. I remember magnificent vistas of ragged mountain ranges and sweeping plains. I think most of all of the people—so beautiful in their humble yet fervent devotion. Their constant movement is dizzying–bodies prostrating in supplication on the hard ground, hands spinning prayer wheels, lips moving as they count prayer beads. The strength of ceremony and tradition in Tibet is as powerful as the vivid colors that brighten the soot-stained temples. In Tibet, I came to know the heights of the highest mountains in the world and the incredible people who call them home. But I also came face to face with the brutal lows of a peaceful people encased in a strong military grip. I think it’s important for travelers to go to Tibet to experience this mystical place for themselves and build their own perspectives, so check back for upcoming posts on tips for traveling to Tibet that support the people of this beautiful land.

PotalaPalace_Lhasa_Tibet_thepersephoneperspective

The Potala Palace, built in 1645, has more than 1,000 rooms, 10,000 shrines and about 200,000 statues.

Pilgrims_PrayerWheelsonwaytoPotalaPalace_LhasaTibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Prayer wheels for kora to the Potala Palace

PrayerWheelsonWalktoPotala_LhasaTibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Potala pilgrim

DebatingMonks_SeraMonastery_Tibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Monks vigorously debating scripture @ Sera Monastery

Boyblessing_seramonastery_tibet_thepersephoneperspective

Boy receives a blessing @ Sera Monastery

DrepungMonastery_HolyManHolyPlace_Tibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

A holy man prepares to give a discourse @ Drepung Monastery

DrepungMonastery_wheremonkspray_Tibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Drepung Monastery used to be a home for 10,000 Buddhist monks–now there are less than 400.

FriendlyPilgrim_BarkhorMarket_LhasaTibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Friendly pilgrim @ Barkhor Market in Lhasa

FrontofJokhangTemple_LhasaTibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Light illuminates prostrating pilgrims in front of the Jokhang Temple in Lhasa

PilgrimCircuitingBarkhor_LhasaTibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

A pilgrim engages in kora around the Jokhang Temple in Lhasa

BeautifulTibetanWoman_LhasaTibet_thepersephoneperspective

I met this beautiful Tibetan woman in a park in Lhasa and she asked me to take her portrait.

YungbuLakangPalace_YarlungValleyTibet_thepersephoneperspective_travelblog

The restored Yungbu Lakang Palace is said to be the oldest building in Tibet and overlooks the ancient Yarlung Valley.

monksYungbuLakang_Tibet_thepersephoneperspective

Monks hard at work at Yungbu Lakang, Tibet

NyetangLhachenmo_GiantBuddha_tibet_thepersephoneperspective_travelblog

The Nyetang Lhachenmo Buddha is more than 100 feet tall and 1000 years old

sheepherders_himalayas_tibet_thepersephoneperspective

Sheep herding in the Himalayas

MonksSamyeMonastery_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Monks at Samye Monastery–built in 775-9, it is the oldest monastery in Tibet

Yakbuttercandle_deities_samye_monastery_Tibet_thepersephonepersepective_travelblog

Yak butter candles light up the deities at Samye Monastery.

Thank you for reading! Have you considered a trip to Tibet? If so, has anything been holding you back?

17 thoughts on “Seven Days in Tibet

  1. The brutal laws in Tibet are still there, yet there is very little on the news anymore, and you always hope these beautiful people are okay.
    Thank you for sharing this Becca. As always, your posts are always so informative, and photography so stunning. Please do share about travelling tips. I don’t know if and when, but it certainly, really would be an amazing place to visit and experience. 🙂
    ~Carl~

    Liked by 1 person

    • Everything about Tibet is controlled to the umpteenth degree, and due to China’s global influence, the world has turned a blind eye to the serious human rights abuses that are happening there daily. It shocked me that we live in a post imperialistic world, yet–regardless of whether Tibet is a part of China or not–the military demonstrations in Tibet and literal rewriting of Tibet’s history smack of highly manipulative imperialism. Yes, Carl. Go before China is successful in the total cultural annihilation and subjugation of this beautiful and unique place. Tips definitely in the works… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Were you just there? I’ve been to Tibet twice, and it haunts me, too. I would go back again tomorrow. I look forward to reading more of your posts. Thanks for following my blog; I have a number of posts on Tibet – both photos and stories – if you have any interest in revisiting this magical place!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi! I’m so happy I stumbled upon your blog! And I’m excited to read about your Tibet adventures! I wish that I was just there, but my experience was a few years ago. I honestly haven’t been ready to talk about it before now, because it was so disturbing to me. Also, I just started blogging, so I have a lot to share to catch up to present day. 🙂 Thank you so much for the follow! I cherish meeting like-minded travelers.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your photos are brilliant and bring back so many memories of my own Tibetan trip. Looking forward to following you to your next destinations.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s