2014 - Buddhist Pilgrimage to India (Day 10) in Varanasi

BUDDHIST PILGRIMAGE TO INDIA “In the Master’s Footsteps” 24 Nov – 5 Dec 2014 (12D/11N)
At Gandhakuti (Buddha's hut) in Jetavana.

Day 10 (03.12.2014) - Sravasti to Varanasi (270km 11hrs.)

The morning call at 4am and breakfast was at 5am. At 6am we visited the Jetavana Garden, which was donated by Anathapindika, where the Buddha spent twenty-four rainy seasons. At Sravasti, Buddha confounded His critics with a million-fold manifestation of Himself seated on a thousand petaled lotus, as fire and water emanated from his body. We did chanting here and later visited the Ananda Bodhi tree and again we did chanting and meditation here.

At 8.15am we proceed to Varanasi one of the holiest and fascinating cities in the East. Had our packed lunch at about 12.30pm at a restaurant garden. We arrived at the hotel at 7.10pm after 11 long hours on the road. We had our dinner straight away and at 8.30 we went out for some shopping.

Dinner & overnight at Varanasi: Hotel Rivitas

Sravasti was the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Kosala ruled by King Pasenadi, a lay disciple and great admirer of the Buddha. It owes its fame to its long and close association with the Buddha’s ministry. Of the 45 years of his ministry, the Buddha spent as many as 25 rains-retreats, 24 of them continuously (21st- 44th) at Sravasti.

It was here that the millionaire Sudatta, popularly known as Anathapindika or “Feeder of the Poor”, donated the famous Jetavana or Jeta’s Grove to the Buddha after he had bought it at an exorbitant price, which was “as many gold coins as would cover it”.

Since the Buddha spent a major part of his missionary life in Sravasti, the majority of sermons in the scriptures were delivered while staying in Jetavana. Another important monastery at Sravasti was the Pubbarama, donated by Lady Visakha, chief benefactress of the Buddha.

At Gandhakuti (Buddha's hut) in Jetavana.


At Gandhakuti (Buddha's hut) in Jetavana.


The remains of Jetavana and Savatthi were locally known as Sahet-Mahet. Alexander Cunningham used the ancient (6th century AD) accounts of Chinese pilgrim-monks to determine that Sahet-Mahet actually referred to Jetavana and Savatthi.


Jetavana is currently a historical park, with remains of many ancient buildings such as monasteries, huts (such as the Gandhakuti and the Kosambakuti) and stupas. In Jetavana is also located the second-holiest tree of Buddhism: the Anandabodhi Tree. A visit to Savatthi and Jetavana is part of the Buddhist pilgrim route in North-India.




At Gandhakuti (Buddha's hut) Temple 2 in Jetavana Garden.





Annie Watt Lai Seong on the bicycle.

Chong Voon Siong  on the bicycle.

Jenny Teng Swee Lin and Tan Faye Shien




At the Ananda Bodhi tree for chanting and meditation here.












A farm house along the main road to Varanasi.




Had our packed lunch at about 12.30pm at a restaurant garden.





An open barber shop by a camp fire.

We stopped at this petrol station for toilet.

Five tractors in a lorry - 'Incredible India".

I had a looked inside the driver's seat - it was so basic.


We arrived at the hotel at 7.10pm after 11 long hours on the road. We had our dinner straight away and at 8.30 we went out for some shopping.

6 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing Bro Ching --- an adventurous pilgrimage trip! Stay well.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Neng Bin, Good to see that you are traveling around happily. Looks like your group is really enjoying themselves. Wish I could find time to do such adventures. At this moment we are in Perth with my children who have migrated to Australia leaving 2 old fellas in Penang. Hopefully we can meet up when you come to Penang. However, I am leaving in Jawi now. KH Choo Mobile: 019-4783522

    ReplyDelete
  3. Bless you bro. Ching, very memorable pictures and write up thank you, sadhu sadhu sadhu.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Tan Chooi Kee02 January, 2015

    Hi Bro Ching, I am so happy to see those memorable pictures and your detailed write up about our adventurous Buddhist Pilgrimage. Thank you and may you be blessed with good merit. Sadhu sadhu sadhu.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Bro. Ching,
    Such nice write up and good pictures. The write up brings back the wonderful moments we had during the pilgrimage. Thank you so much for all the effort in putting them up as a way of documenting our trip. It is a real joy reading them.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Bro. Ching,
    Such nice write up and good pictures. The write up brings back the wonderful moments we had during the pilgrimage. Thank you so much for all the effort in putting them up as a way of documenting our trip. It is a real joy reading them.

    ReplyDelete