MATHO/Mangtro(1): Back to Ladakh And A Wonderful Stay At Matho 快乐再访拉达克及初至玛透

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Last time when I came to Ladakh, I was physically ill. This time I was mentally unfit. Yet each time this place simply recharged me back to a happy and well state shortly after arrival.

Maybe it is because of the blue sky and fresh cool air, or maybe simply because it feels like returning home whenever I come to high attitude places (Leh is at about 3500m high).

上次来之前在生病,这次来之前心情不佳,不过每次一来到拉达克,马上身心回复平衡。我可能特别适合来到高原吧(这边海拔差不多3500米),一看到蓝天、雪山,马上心情就很好。

Also, unlike in Delhi, Ladakhi people are friendly yet do not bother you excessively, or at all. As Lonely Planet put it, Ladakh is a rare place in India where it is traveler friendly and yet so hassle free.

***

Luding Khenchen Rinpoche’s monastery, Mangtro Monastery (Matho Monastery), is about 30 min away by car from Leh. The monastery is just amazingly beautiful, located on a hill top, surrounded by snow capped mountains and overlooking the Matho village.
祿頂堪千仁波切的寺庙“玛透寺”(芒拓寺)离Leh有三十分钟的车程。初见寺庙时,只能以“惊艳”来形容。一个只有350户人家的村子,怎么会有这样一座巍峨寺庙!四周是雪山,俯瞰玛透村。听说夏天绿意盎然会更美,不过我觉得现在已经够让人瞠目结舌了。
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***

Lama was very kind to let me stay in his room right by the monastery so that I do not need to travel from Leh everyday to see their famous annual oracle festival. Staying close to the monastery also saves me from climbing up to the monastery from the village.

His nephew and niece were also very kind taking care of me. They do make me feel very much welcome here.

来之前,只乞求喇嘛帮我在玛透村里找张床,能睡就好。不然每天从Leh赶来看玛透寺一年一度的神谕法会,虽然住的会好些,但是来回会花很多时间在路上。喇嘛很慈悲的让我住在他的房间里,所以我不只不用每天赶车,连从村子向上爬山朝庙都省了。

Last night, Phuntsok brought me cakes, bread, jam, spread cheese and various things as he was worried that I might not get accustomed to the food here — but actually Lhamo, his young cousin now studying in high school, has been serving me so much food with her wonderful cooking. I can not recall myself being able to cook anything at all, not even an omelet, in my high school days, so am really impressed at her cooking talent.

喇嘛的侄子、侄女很也一同热情照顾我。昨晚他侄子下班后,让我很感动的带了一堆食物(面包、起司、果酱…)上来,就怕我吃不惯这里的东西。其实他表妹虽然才高中生,但是超能煮的。因为怕浪费,所以婉拒了大部份的食物,但留下了蛋糕,看着都很高兴。他们的心意让我觉得很感动又很溫暖。

As I really do not need so much food, I turned down some other stuff but happily accepted the cakes. Even seeing the cakes makes me happy. It is the considering gesture that makes me feel so touched.
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***

110314 Ladakh 106Everybody warned me that Ladakh in winter would be extremely cold. I told Lama that that I can live in very simple place, just need a bed to sleep at night, but please find me a bed in a room with fire! ( was thinking of the traditional fireplace in Tibetan family).

No electricity and water was expected, but actually he has a mini solar system good enough to power the lighting, TV and my various gadgets. Moreover, he borrowed this gas-heater which Indian government provided to the Choglamsar flood victims (Lama’s youngest sister lost her house and everything in the flood).

The heater heats up the room very well. Indian government can exceed expectation sometimes.

来之前,每个人都警告我说拉达克的冬天是如何的寒冷。其实今年藏历新年在三月,本来就比往年溫暖——到的第一天就见喇嘛的侄子穿着短袖上衣。喇嘛还放了一个煤气暖炉在房内,舒适程度甚至胜过上海的中央空调。

***

110316 Mathok 011One day I asked Lhamo to take me to Leh. It was a pleasant bus ride – a photo of HH Sakya Trizin worshiped in the bus and  throughout the trip, there were always some ladies chanting mantras.

Also very impressed at how the youth would always yield seats to the senior. I really appreciate Matho people!

某日乘公车去Leh。公车内挂着萨迦法王的照片,一路上玛透妇人们虔敬地持咒声不断,年轻人也都必定会让座给年长者,大家相互帮站着的人拿包。他们保存下来的传统和礼教真的是太让人欣赏了!

***

View from the rooftop in the morning (my morning is after 7am while Lama left his place every day at 3:40 for the 4am Hevajra Puja!)
每天早上起床上厕所,看到的就是屋顶上的这片晨景——我的早晨是七、八点;喇嘛的早晨则是三点多就出门去庙里做四点开始的七日喜金刚法会。
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I did tsog offerings for two consecutive days. First day was the 10th based on the Chinese calendar and the 2nd 10th day was based on the Tibetan calendar.

110315 Mathok 038There are many birds in Matho. Every morning when I went up to the rooftop, there were always over 10 of these pretty birds resting there while all offerings had already been completely taken 🙂 Though I am quite fond of the monkeys in Manduwala, knowing birds having enjoyed my offerings does bring extra joy.

连着两天做薈供——第一天是根据农历做的,第二天是藏历。晚上供掉薈供品后,早上到屋顶上,就会见到十几只鸟儿歇息在屋顶上,薈供品则了无踪影。

虽然我蛮喜欢德拉敦的猴子们,不过看到鸟儿来吃薈供品,还是更为心喜。

***

On the night before the last day of Hevajra Puja and the 3rd night of the appearance of the two Rongtsen oracles, there is this amazing light-cloud circle around the moon, formed by smoke-like clouds while stars can still be vividly seen in the clear sky. With the moon light, it seems like a ring of light surrounding the moon. Again, pity that my camera is not good enough to capture this amazing vision.
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喜金刚法会圆满的前一晚,也是红白荣赞两尊神谕降临的第三晚,在没什么云、可以见到各主要星座的天空中,出现了一圈如烟般的云雾,围绕月亮。完美圓形的雲彩在月光的映照下,形成一轮環繞月亮的微虹光圈。

再次感叹自己的相机若是稍稍好一点,可以照下这个奇景就好了~~

***

The last day of Hevajra Puja was concluded with the dissolution of the sand mandala. The two oracle monks also came. When they are not in trance, they have head and face completely covered with long shawl, which adds more mystic flavors to their majestic being during this special period.

Standing close to them is an aweing experience.

喜金刚法会的最后一天是收摄壇城。观看沙壇城的灭寂总是有种特别清淨寂静的感觉,那是少数较为趋近体悟空性的时刻吧。

今天两位担任神谕的僧人也来了。他们平常住在两尊护法神各自的屋子中修法,像是现在没有被附身的时刻,会用绛红色大披肩包住头面,只露出双眼。虽然不是降神的时刻,站在他们身边也令人感到非常敬畏。

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