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June 16, 2019

Boudhanath Stupa: Center of Tibetan Buddhism

World Heritage Briefing - 6


Boudhanath Stupa: Can Fulfill Your Wish

Boudhanath Stupa: Can Fulfill Your Wish

Boudhanath Stupa is one of the religious symbiosis of Nepali as well as Tibetan Buddhist religious centers located in Nepal as it has some connections with the foundations of Tibetan Buddhism.

The 36-meter-high stupa of Boudhanath, located 3 kilometers east of Kathmandu, is one of the main centers of Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal, that once lay on ancient Nepal-Tibetan trade route.

Renovated during Licchavi rule in the 8th century has 13 stage -canopy with a pair of eyes seeing everywhere that symbolizes awareness.

Like Swoyambhunath stupa, Boudhanath also has prayer wheels installed at the base and devotees can be seen circumambulating the stupa.

What is stunning about this stupa is that all kinds of restaurants, café, book stores, clothes stores, Buddhist prayer flag shops, hotels, and monasteries also are seen around this stupa and the crowds of people continue to flock the stupa throughout any seasons.

Hundreds and thousands of tourists are drawn by this venerated stupa enlisted as one of the world heritage by UNESCO in Nepal in 1979.

Strolling around this stupa either in the evening or morning time would be very interesting and thrilling for a new visitor.

World heritages in Nepal

Tale Related to Stupa:

There is a tale about how stupa was built here. A mother named Jadzima had built the stupa. The mother used to look after chickens. She wanted to build a stupa.

One day she approached the Nepali king and urged him to give permission to get the land for the construction of the stupa.

Generally, King would not give any permissions, but this time the King granted the permission for the land to be given for the very cause she urged. Since King’s tongue had slipped in giving this permission, Tibetans call it “Jharung Khashor Chorten”. The term” Jharung” means-it can be done’ and Khashor means “slipped out of the mouth.” “Chorten means ‘stupa’.

It is said that the mother died after completing only the base of the stupa. Her four sons had completed the rest of the stupa.

On completion of the stupa, the four sons started praying before the stupa. It is believed that at the time of their prayers, all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas were absorbed into the stupa.

That is why the stupa is known for its “all-encompassing effect” which means that the stupa fulfills the wishes of anybody who prays before it.

As the four brothers were standing and praying before the stupa, the eldest of them wished if he were to be a Dharma King in Tibet- the Snow land.

The other brother prayed and asked for the boon to be a minister to help his elder brother spread the dharma.

The third brother prayed to be an abbot to pass on the ordinations. And the last brother wished to be a powerful saint (yogi).

In the next life, the eldest brother got incarnated as King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet who married Nepal’s princess Bhrikuti. The second brother became a minister -(Padma Gungtsen).

The third brother as he wished became an abbot to spread ordinations of Dharma. The fourth brother, of course, got incarnated as Padmasambhava who became the epitome of Tibetan Buddhism.

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