Tibet is the land of ancient wisdom
The Soul of Tibet
Tibet is a place of spiritual awakening and pristine natural wonders. It is located in Central Asia and home to three million Tibetans. Many come from far and wide to discover themselves in the high mountains, sweeping dry plateau, and great river valleys of the region. Tibet is home to the earth’s tallest mountains and the world famous Dalai Lama. He is believed by many buddhists to be a living incarnation of the Bodhisattva of Compassion.
Despite over 40 years of Chinese occupation, Tibetans proudly preserve their history, culture, and deep commitment to spirituality through Tibetan Buddhism. This unique and beautiful form of Buddhism is different from Buddhism as it exists throughout Asia and the world. Tibetan Buddhism flows with tantric practices. It is a unique perspective on the philosophy.
People from around the world seeking truth and oneness journey to Tibet’s many monasteries.
Tibet: the Land of Ancient Wisdom
Tibet is often called “the Land of Ancient Wisdom” because it has deeply spiritual roots. This long spiritual history has fascinated people around the world for generations. Tibet has captured the hearts, minds, imaginations, and souls of people around the world. Some say that this region is very important to humanity’s spirituality as a whole. They consider this ancient place be the last living and breathing way the modern world can connect to the civilizations of the past.
The history of Tibet is deeply intertwined with Buddhism and goes back centuries. The Tibetans were originally nomadic, and their early kings are considered to be more mythic than factual. According to myth, their early kings were connected directly to heaven by a celestial dmu cord, which allowed them to ascend right into heaven instead of dying when their sons grew old enough to rule. A series of powerful Tibetan emperors ruled from roughly the 7th to 11th centuries, before the empire collapsed. Buddhism was brought to Tibet in the 7th century.
Tibet existed independently of China until the 18th century, when it was conquered by them. Tibet was free briefly in the 20th century, before becoming an autonomous region of neighboring China. Tibet’s neighboring countries are:
Over the centuries, Tibetan Buddhism developed four main schools in a place that is called “the roof of the world.” This is because ¾ of Tibet sits at an altitude of over 11,400 feet, making it the highest region in the world. Located on the northern side of the Himalayas, this region is famous for its towering peaks. Tibet and Nepal share the famous Mt. Everest, which only the bravest try to conquer. In this land of sky high peaks and plateaus you can find grand temples and palaces.
The Magic of Tibet
Tibet is a region known for its beautiful natural vistas such as:
- The highest peaks on earth
- Snowcapped mountains
- Crystal clear lakes
- Lush fields
It is also considered by many to be the spiritual capital of the world. Mystic spirituality can even be found in nature, whether you enter one of Tibet’s many temples or monasteries or not. One such place is Mount Kailash, one of Asia’s most sacred mountains. It is a holy pilgrimage site for those of Hindu, Buddhist, Jain, and Bon religions. The journey is called by Tibetans the Kang Rinpoche. This means “Precious Jewel of Snows.” Mount Kailash is the source of three of Asia’s longest rivers and its nearby glaciers feed the sacred Lake Manasarovar.
Lake Manasarovar is a freshwater lake that sits over 4,500 feet above sea level. It is another place in Tibet sacred to the region’s religions. Manasarovar itself is a combination of two Sanskrit words meaning roughly “perception” and “lake.” Buddhists believe that it is the lake where Maya conceived Buddha. This lake is said to be an important place for both feminine divine energy and universal wisdom. There are several ancient monasteries on its shores.
Tibet is also known for its monasteries and temples. Today you can still visit the Drepung monastery. Built in 1416, at its peak it inhabited more than 7,000 monks. This made it one of the largest monasteries in all of Tibet. It is also where the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Dalai Lamas lived and died.
Tibet’s most famous temple is the ornate Jokhang Temple in its capital of Lhasa. Jokhang means “Shrine of the Lord” in Tibetan. Jokhang is their oldest and most revered temple. It was built in the year 642. Today it houses an image of the Jobo Chenpo, meaning “Great Lord” at its heart. It is another famous site of spiritual pilgrimage.
Another powerful place in Tibet is Samye. This was the first monastery ever built in Tibet. It was constructed in roughly the year 775 by one of Tibet’s great kings in the shape of a mandala. It’s main three story temple in the center is bright red and features a pair of eternally watchful eyes. It represents the legendary Mount Meru, which is the center of the universe in Buddhism.
The Potala Palace, located in Lhasa, towers over Tibet. This grand palace is now a museum and world heritage site, but was the residence of the 14th Dalai Lama until he escaped to India during the 1959 Tibetan uprising. It’s construction was started by the 5th Dalai Lama in the 17th century. The palace contains over 1,0000 rooms and 10,000 holy shrines.
If you are interested in experiencing this holy site and other power places when you travel to Tibet, you must make sure you are prepared. Exploring Tibet must be done with an organized tour group or tour guide and the proper travel permit. The Chinese government does not allow independent travel within Tibet for foreigners.
The Roof Of The World
Tibet is a region of mysticism and beautiful natural wonders where the old ways are preserved. It is truly a place where the past and present come together. It’s capital city Lhasa is referred to as “The Holy City,” but in truth there are spots for spiritual contemplation throughout the entire region. From its ancient monasteries and temples to its crystal clear lakes and holy mountains, when you explore Tibet you also explore yourself.