Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery)

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About Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery)

Far From City: 0 kms from city center
Cost: About Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery) Weather: Time Required:1 - 2 hrs Open Time:9:00 AM - 6:00 PM Cost:No entry fee

History of Namdroling Monastery The foundation for this majestic monastery was laid down in 1963 by His Holiness Pema Norbu Rinpoche, the 11th throne-holder of the Palyul lineage of the Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, following his exit from Tibet. The full name of the monastery is Thegchog Namdrol Shedrub Dargyeling. The initial structure was made of bamboo and covered an area of 80 sq feet. The current 80 sqm area that the temple holds is thanks to the generosity of the Indian government, who donated the land to the Tibetan refugees who settled in the area. As this area was carved out of the jungle region, the Tibetans initially faced troubles of wild elephants and other tropical dangers present in the vicinity. Architecture of the Golden Temple Although the monastery seems not so vast from outside, it is huge inside. There are three 40 feet high statues of Lord Buddha called Padmasambhava, Buddha & Amitayus. The floor is made of marble but is always covered with a carpet. People can burn incense sticks and sit on the carpet which contributes to the spiritual environment in the temple. The walls have paintings depicting phases of Buddha's life. Some even display Tibetan gods and demons. The Namdroling Monastery also has sacred texts, horns, trumpets, incense sticks, bells, prayer beads, prayer wheels, prayer flags, drums, etc. Those who visit the monastery need to maintain silence in order to help out the ones who meditate. Due to the presence of the gold statues, it is also known as the golden temple. Lord Buddha's statue is 60 feet in height and those of Guru Padmasambhava and Amitayur are 58 feet high. Placards are present near the entrance which contain that there are sacred scriptures in the form of statues along with small clay tupas which are symbols of the body, mind, and speech of the Buddhas. Their followers believe that if one worships these symbols and makes offerings then his/her faith will get restored and will help achieve peace, compassion, and wisdom. Festivals Celebrated at Namdroling Monastery Buddha festival is the major festival of the Buddhas. As per the Tibetan calendar, June is a special month for practice for the monks as the enlightenment of Buddha took place on the 15th day of June and is known as Saga Dawa Dhuechen. The 10th and 15th days of the month are known as Dhuechen and the fourth Tibetan lunar month is known as Saga Dawa. The lama dance, known as Losar Cham, is performed at this time. During the festival, monks are seated in rows while some of them are standing and moving around the place. These monks, instead of chanting, sell food which is packaged in plastic bags kept in plastic crates to the public. Some of the food items include potato chips, watermelon slices, packaged drinking water and cold drinks. Few monks also walk on the sides, and the seated monks bring a snack or a drink to sustain sitting there. Two essential qualities which one gets to learn during this festival include the 'act of consumption' and the 'act of restraint'.

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Best time to visit Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery) The best time to visit the monastery is from June to March to enjoy the pleasant weather with the temperature being around 20 to 22 degrees Celsius. The summer season from April to May is hot and filled with visitors. Also, Buddha Jayanti, 6th of July, i.e., Dalai Lama's birthday and Tibetan New Year are some of the perfect events to pay a visit to the monastery. It is best to avoid visiting during peak monsoons and peak winters as the weather extremities inhibit one from fully enjoying the area. How to Reach Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery) Namdroling Monastery is situated at a distance of 6 km from Kushalnagar. One can drive all the way from Kushalnagar or hire a cab. Autorickshaws are the only means of local transport for traveling between the camps.

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Where to Stay The Monastery itself offers basic accommodation, though visitors require a Protected Area Permit to stay overnight within the premises. The town of Kushalnagar is about 6 km from the area and offers many lodging options for travellers. Those looking for more luxurious accommodation options may go to the neighbouring town of Coorg, about 30 km from the location. Tips 1. The prayer rituals are conducted around 1 PM and are quite delightful to watch.2. The prayer wheels and the shrines should be circled only in the clockwise direction with the right hand.3. Food stalls, as well as washrooms, are provided for the comfort of the visitors.4. Cameras are allowed in the monastery so the tourists can capture some memories and fun facts about the place.5. No pets and no footwear are permitted inside the monastery.6. The restaurants near the monastery close by 7:00 PM so reach there on time.7. Shaking hands with the monks of the monastery is not allowed at all.8. The clothing should be such that it is in sync with the simple environment.9. The shoes, as well as ringing phones, should be kept outside the main hall.10. Shopping centres near the temples offer tourists the opportunity to purchase traditional Tibetan items like costumes, statues, carpets, and jewellery.11. Alcohol, as well as smoking, is strictly prohibited on the premises.

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