Walked to the Buddha garden this morning, it was really warm. It is a beautiful calm place, the trees are weighed down by prayer flags. Monks and holy men sit under the trees, many of them Bodhi trees of course. We spent ages in the garden just sitting and watching the other pilgrims come and go. Pray and chant. The peace of the place was tangible. After a while I decided to meditate. Whilst in my meditation tears started to flow down my cheeks. This was a complete suprise to me when it happened, but it does makes sense. I was releasing. I never thought I would come here again. Those tears were an acknowledgement of what has happened and the relief that I am able to come back here to give thanks. An emotional release.
Funnily enough, last time we were here there were loads of pilgrims, we were able to take photo's of the actual birthplace and the ambience was perfect. Today we were practically the only ones looking at the spot and the guards would not allow us to take pictures. There were not so many pilgrims so the atmosphere whilst peaceful did not give off the power that we experienced last time. When we went to look at the temples many were closed, whereas last time we sat in on many of the practices. It was a bit the same in Kathmandu, the temples we spent time in last year were closed in preparation for Loshar. Now I am beginning to wonder if I got some special spiritual dispensation last time. Were doors opened for me to give me the spiritual strength I would need on my return home ? Was I given special treatment?. It certainly now feels like it. Anyhow, as it approached 2pm the temperature soared. We had to give up, I had the strenght to carry on walking but the sun was so hot. The back of my neck is very red and I was getting concerned about my right arm. We didnt bring any sunscreen as its not been needed before. So we found a rickshaw station and paid £2 each for our own rickshaw to bring us the 2 miles back to our hotel, where after a bit of lunch we fell asleep for a good couple of hours. Tomorrow we shall return to finish our tour of the temples. But we shall leave at 7am or so, before it gets to hot.