March 24, 2019

Explore Bodh Gaya with MSN Karthik

This week, The Musafir Stories speaks to MSN Karthik – a traveller, a film maker and a youtuber!
Today’s destination: Bodhgaya, Bihar!
Nearest Airport: Gaya Airport or Patna Airport
Nearest Railway Station: Gaya Junction
Prerequisites – Just leave your worries home!
Packing – Nothing unusual!
Time of the year – Best to travel when the festive season is upon us, important festivals being Buddha Poornima (May) or Kalchakra puja (Oct-Nov) or other world healing pujas (watch for them in the calendar)
Length of the itinerary: 3-4 days
Itinerary Highlights:
– Karthik begins the journey by explaining the significance of Bodhgaya, the home of Buddhism. Here is where Prince Siddhartha found enlightenment after traveling all the way from Lumbini, present day Nepal.
– Karthik enlightens us about the Bodhi vriksha or Bodhi tree, it’s history and importance. We talk more about the timeline of the Mahabodhi temple – one of the most important structures in Bodhgaya which is over 2000 years old, how it was patronized by Ashoka, plundered by foreign invaders, left in ruins and finally discovered again in the 19th century.
– The temple is a beautiful structure, that lies in a sprawling complex with over a thousand stupas, a number of other temples and statues of the Buddha. There is a 80 ft statue that was contributed by the Japanese government that signifies 80 years of Buddha’s life.
– Karthik also speaks about the teachings of Buddhism, the interactions with monks who have travelled from all around the world and how their views converge.
– Karthik talks about the other temples and monasteries built by representatives of different countries and the kaalachakra maidan, a huge field that is the venue of all congregations including while his holiness Dalai Lama is visiting.
– Karthik further talks about his experience with Vipasana, its importance and what the retreat involves.
Links:
Link to the youtube documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xA42Eu6Fds&t=0
twitter: @MSNKarthik
instagram: @MSNKarthik
facebook: @adwhyta
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