Boudhanath Stupa Kathmandu Tours

Boudhanath Stupa

To the East of Kathmandu, on the road to Tibet in a depression above the Bagamati valley lies Boudhanath one of the largest stupas in the world. It towers above a small Tamang and Newar Village, Boudha, which since the arrival of the Tibetan refugees has become the centre of a thriving ethnic Tibetan town of Monasteries. Like Swayambunath, Boudhanath has its roots in Newar History.. Today it is the main centre of worship in the valley and a major destination for Tantric Buddhist Pilgrims from the Himalayas.

To the East of Kathmandu, on the road to Tibet in a depression above the Bagamati valley lies Boudhanath one of the largest stupas in the world. It towers above a small Tamang and Newar Village, Boudha, which since the arrival of the Tibetan refugees has become the centre of a thriving ethnic Tibetan town of Monasteries. Like Swayambunath, Boudhanath has its roots in Newar History.. Today it is the main centre of worship in the valley and a major destination for Tantric Buddhist Pilgrims from the Himalayas.

Its common name is Boudha or Boudhanath. Lord of wisdom. The Newars call it Khasa or Khasti Chaitya. The Tibetans simply as Chorten, the stupa, or chorthen chembo, the great stupa. In their legend it is called Chorten Jarung Khashor, “Permission Given for Proper action” The Tibetan understanding of Boudhanath is related in a text called “The Legend of the great Stupa”

A long time ago a poultry and devotee named Jadzimo aspired to make a great offering to the Buddha, using her hard earned savings. She Approached the king for permission to build a magnificent monument to the Buddha. Permission was granted and she was given a Buffalo Hide and told that whatever size the cloth covered then she could build a stupa of that size. The wise woman took this cloth and carefully cut it into one long strand which then allowed her to create a circle with which she claimed the stupa grounds that she wished to construct the stupa on. Construction began but the pride of the wealthy and powerful jealous lords petitioned the king to have the stupa demolished. The King replies “Since Permission to build has been given, it shall not be rescinded” Which is the meaning for the Tibetan name “Jarung Khashor”

When Jadzimo died the stupas construction was finished by her four sons, who had been begotten by four different fathers. This story is related in Samye, the original great monastic centre of central Tibet, by Padmasambhava, who was asked by King Trisong Detsen to describe the fruit of the Karma of building the great stupa. The Great guru the relates how Jadzimo's sons were reborn in as the principle actors in the drama of transmission of the Buddhist doctrine to Tibet. They include Tibet’s most venerated king, Trisong Detsun himself, the Saint who Ordained Tibet’s first Monks, Shantarakshita and also Padmasambhava himself, who subjugated the Tibetan Demons.

The legend s that the relics of the Buddha of a previous aeon, Kashyapa, were installed within it, that when the stupa was consecrated a hundred million Buddha dissolved into it.

Boudhanath is identified as the stupa associated with Lhundrub Tsekpa, the spontaneously amassed, one of the great cremation grounds of the Buddhist world. According to the Tibetan Chronicles:

It is written that Jarung Khashor is one of the eight stupas built at the eight cremation grounds of the eight Mother Goddesses (Mamo) of Kal Bhairava's retinue when long ago Bhairava was vanquished by Chakrashamvara.. In the Spontaneously Amassed cremation ground of Nepal dwells the blood sucking serpent – witch Kasamali. Surrounding the stupa are funereal birds, sepulchral creatures, a cremation ground, ghouls brandishing skeletons, and creatures of the tombs. A flashing Cloud of airy regions lifts heaps of men, fire, skins, and pulverised organs; a Yaksha vomits tigers, wolves, and other wild beasts. Here Padmasambhava subdues the eight classes of demons, reduces the three worlds, subjugates the three domains, and turns the dharma for five years. Hence the great guru is known as Senge Tratrok, he who teaches with a lions roar.

Kasmali or Pukashi is identified above as the protectress of the cremation ground. Kasmali is confounded with the image in the small temple shrine on the north side of the stupa, where she squats with a corpse on her knees, sucking up its entrails and devouring them. Tamangs initiated into the mandala of the Eight Mamos now attend her.