Wolfgang Praegler & Gudrun Mirbach-Praegler
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Photos of the Week
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Once upon a time in Nepal… Photos from 1995 and 2001
      In   Bodnath,   a   suburb   of   Kathmandu,   we   find   a   big   Buddhist   temple.   Before   festival   days   the   whole   temple   will   be   decorated with   banners   and   pennants,   with   prayers   printed   on   them.   Around   the   temple   there   are   monks   sitting,   and   reading   the   holy books.   Prayer   wheels   are   mounted   in   niches   of   the   surrounding   wall   which   are   turned   by   the   passing   believers.   Everyone goes   clockwise   around   the   temple,   since   the   other   way   round   would   bring   bad   luck.   There   are   Gaine-singers   sitting   beside the   temple.   They   play   the   Sarangi,   a   self-made   4-string   fiddle,   and   they   sing   their   old   songs.   In   the   songs   they   tell   the   latest news   for   people   most   of   whom   are   still   analphabets. You   can   compare   them   to   the   European   ballad-mongers   in   olden   times. In a neighboring monastery monks are meditating to meditational tunes played on traditional instruments.
The temple of Bodnath Colourful big and small flags decorate the temple on festival days The dome and the pagoda on top show the eyes of Buddha Prayers are printed on the pennants A monk is reading a holy text, the sanskrit This pilgrim circles around the temple with his silver prayer wheel There are papers with prayers printed on them inside the prayer wheels. When turned, the prayers count as said In the niches of the surrounding wall there are big prayer wheels installed that can be turned by the hands of the passing pilgrims This audience is listening expectantly to the Gaine-singers A gaine, playing the 4-string fiddle Some of the listeners have put on their best clothing Old songs and latest news are sung to the tunes of the Gaine-singers In the meditation hall of the Buddhist monastery we can see a photo of the adorned Dalai Lama These monks play the tunes to support meditation The meditational instruments of the monks