• by Larry
  • Last Updated: 2017-07-27

The Ganden Thangka Showing Festival is a holy celebration taking place at the ancient Ganden Monastery which is the first temple of the Gelug sect of Tibet. The pilgrims come here by thousands for a visit of their dream place every year. They pray around the monastery, worship Buddha inside the main hall, and show their respect to an exquisite Thangka of Buddha displayed on a hill beside the temple. The Thangka Showing Festival in Ganden is one of the most wonderful feasts for Tibetan Buddhists and those who have strong faith in Buddhism. In order to join this ceremony, some poor people would come there several weeks in advance by walking. It's a grand scene that thousands of devout people gather there for their religious beliefs. If you're interested in experiencing unique cultures or make some change of your life, it’s a good choice for you to go on a trip to Ganden Monastery on August 7, 2017.

The Ganden Monastery lies to the northeast of the Potala Palace in Lhasa at a distance of about 36 kilometers. Many locals and travelers will set off from different areas of Lhasa at midnight and come for the festival before dawn. Many people choose to stand on the top of a mountain nearby to watch the sunrise. On a clear day, the sunlight will appear on the horizon and light up holy land with golden light. You may be mesmerized by the wonderful views there on the Tibetan Plateau.

The crowds will flood into the Ganden Monastery once the celebration begins. They step into every hall there with awe, praying for blessings by the wisdom light of Buddhas. During the festival, the pilgrims will dress up in their finest clothes and decorate their livestock with fine decorations.

Then the pilgrims will slowly move on from the architectural complex of the monastery to the chosen mountain to watch the Thangka exhibition. The mountain is dotted with countless people, most of them attempt to get closer to the Thangka. Then the monks will blow horns and beat drums to open the prelude of the Thangka show. Lots of incenses are lighted with a sweet smell, this makes an atmosphere of solemnity and peace.

After that, the old and respectable monks will step into the stage center in their unique robes. The crowds will cheer up and roll their prayer wheels as they know that Thangka show time is finally coming. The presiding monks will chant mantras to bless the treasure of Buddhism before it was unveiled to the visitors. Then this excellent piece of artwork will hang on the wall of the mountain. The pilgrims will try to touch the magical fabric with their foreheads and sprinkle their white prayer scarves on it praying for blessing.

Finally, the monks will fold the Thangka. Some visitors start to disperse and leave while most of the rest people will twist up to the mountainside, where they can enjoy a meal with their family and friends.

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