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Standing in the center, is a large Standing Buddha Statue that is mesmerizing, making one wonder how the Monks back then managed to achieve this.


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Show reviews that mention. It is close to the Spiti River, near Spiti Valley, and is the biggest monastery of the valley, also being the training center for the Lamas. Reportedly, on request, it also opens the doors to the medieval prayer rooms and even Zimshung Lhakhang for the visitors. Hanging Monastery, China One of the most visited monasteries, mostly due to the menacing fall right beside it, Hanging Monastery is perched halfway up a cliff, almost 75 meters above the ground.

It is built near Mount Heng in Hunyuan County, Datong City, China, and its name is quite the misnomer considering it is actually supported by stilts. Also being the only existing temple with the combination of three Chinese traditional religions: Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism, this place mainly known for its Hall of Three Religion, enshrining the deities of all the three religions. It is situated at the edge of a cliff, meters above the Paro Valley, 10 kilometers to the north of Paro, and is accessible by road and then a three-hour trek from the parking space. The stone steps are carved into the exposed cliff face, with no handrail, making the visit here quite thrilling and adventurous.

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It is said that one can actually feel the chill breath of Guru Rinpoche coming from the cave. Taung Kalat, Burma If one is up to the task of climbing steps of the Mount Popa, a volcano rising to the height of 1, meters, almost 50 km from the medieval city of Bagan, in central Burma, to see one of the most magnificent sites in Burma, then Taung Kalat is the right Buddhist monastery for them.


Mount Popa itself is quite prominent a pilgrimage site, with thousands of tourists visiting each year to see Nat temples and relic sites situated atop. Looking almost like a giant castle, this mountain with its monastery is visible from even a distance of 60km. The objects, sites, rituals, and texts we have selected for our research led us to seek the values and contexts of their emergence and development through active cultural interactions of Mongols with the rest of Asia, direct communications with China and Tibet, and indirect contacts with South and Central Asia.

The contributions to this special issue are organized chronologically, starting with a photo essay and related research article that initiate a discussion and analysis of findings from the seventeenth-century Saridag Monastery in northern Mongolia. This site, known from seventeenth-century textual sources as a major dharma seat of Khalkha reincarnate ruler—the First Jebtsundampa Zanabazar — —was only recently excavated by a team organized by the Institute of History and Archaeology at the Mongolian Academy of Sciences.

These findings, heretofore unpublished in any scholarly venue, testify to the local production of Mongolian Buddhist sculptures in the s and illuminate the practice that necessitated their production as well as cultural ties of the Mongols outside Tibet.

Appropriation of Tibetan thangka painting tradition can be seen in the early eighteenth-century portrait of Zanabazar, in which a later style suggests a Mongol familiarity of the Qing court painting styles in Chengde. This article focuses on the topic of Shambhala as examined through Mongolian texts and a thangka currently held in Prague, which the author proves is Mongolian. The apocalyptic vision of war in Shambhala was attractive for lay and Buddhist protagonists in promoting the vision of associating Mongolia with Shambhala and the possibilities of rebirth in that mystic land.

Next, Vesna A. Wallace explores the question of the relation of text and image in an article that illuminates the production of illustrated manuscripts in Mongolia using a particular late-nineteenth century manuscript as a case study. As the author informs us, the tale was very popular with the Mongols from the seventeenth century onward and appeared in various forms: as xylograph printed translations from Tibetan, handwritten manuscripts, and illustrated manuscripts of the Mongolized version of the tale. This article is informative in many ways, disseminating important knowledge about the manuscript culture of Mongolia in general and relating to specific details of illustrated texts.

The author shows how the Mongols, beyond merely receiving Buddhist texts via China and Tibet, were active translators of compound authorship of Buddhist narratives.

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  6. Reinterpreting, adding humor and a happy ending, and adapting the narrative details to specifics of the Mongolian context through both textual and pictorial means helped to relate these Buddhist themes and didactic narratives from afar directly to a Mongolian lay audience. A fourth article by Isabelle Charleux focuses on the similar theme of Mongol ways and rituals of appropriation, exploring the Mongolian worship of Boudhanath stupa of Nepal.

    Charleux begins by asking why the cult of the Nepalese Boudhanath stupa reached Mongolia and why the stupa was chosen to be replicated in many Mongolian monasteries. Despite the relatively low number of pilgrims who were able to travel to Nepal in person, literary sources, visual reproductions of Boudhanath in paintings, architectural replicas, and xylograph prints established the ancient Newar site as a Jarung Khashar Tib.

    Gandan Monastery and Buddhism in Mongolia

    As differentiated from any other types of stupas, these architectural replicas in Mongolian monasteries created their own style of this stupa in Mongolia, purportedly creating copies of Boudhanath stupa far away from Nepal. In these transformations, Charleux maintains, the Mongol builders made selective use of Tibetan, Chinese, and Nepalese forms, ultimately connecting Jarung Khashar to local dharma practice.