Monday, January 3, 2011

Gurupāda - A new begining.....

A New Beginning at the Gurupāda

Gurupāda is 35 km from Bodh Gaya. To reach the base of the hill, one has to start at the village of Gurpa. Gurpa can be reached by train from Gaya and by road from Bodh Gaya. Changeless, Gurpa is still in its pristine form, as it must have been at the time of the Buddha. Xuanzang and Fahein suggested that it was a dense forest with many wild animals. Gurpa Hill is around 1 km walk from the Gurpa Village.  The Hill is almost 200 meters high and one has to take around 1500 steps to reach the summit.

The Grand Chord Railway Line passing by the Gurpa Hill

Gurpa Village getting ready to begin the day

A temple on our approach to Gurpa Hill

Venerable Anand Bhante who founded the “Asian Buddhist Culture Centre” (ABCC), a Bodh Gaya based Non-Government Organisation, has taken the initiative to revive the neglected site of Gurupāda.  Venerable Zi-Yin, a Taiwanese monk, has generously contributed to making steps to reach the top and a stupa on the top of the Gurpa Hill.

H.H Karmapa on the occasion of the inaugural of the Gurpa Hill Stupa

The Bhikkhu Sangha and the laity climbing the summit

Ven. Zi-Yin from Taiwan and his followers, who facilitated the construction
of the steps and stupa on Gurpa Hill

Ven. Anand Bhante of ABCC took the initiative
of the revival of the legacy of Gurupada

Construction of Stupa on the summit

Nava Nalanda Mahavihara Sanskritik Gram (NNMSG) is currently working on the master plan for the development of the site. Community participation is an integral part of any such initiative by the NNMSG. The community of Gurpa, especially the youth, is very participative and enthusiastic. Two of the youth from this village participated in the workshop ““Buddhist Heritage, Culture, Community and Tourism” organised by NNMSG on 27th September 2010.

Community involvement programme by NNMSG…

Youths from Gurpa Village being felicitated at the workshop

Children of Gurpa

The warm hospitality offered to us by the community of Gurpa

A dharmshala (rest house) at Gurpa for the pilgrims visiting Gurpa Hill, now a Hindu pilgrim place

The custodians of the rich heritage of Gurpa

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