Dharma Rain

Tibet, 2007

 

One of the most serenely beautiful moments of my life. This golden rain was shot the evening before beginning our three day trek around Mount Kailash, a trip I'd wanted to do for over a decade. Seeing this phenomenal light and rain show appear the night before setting out was nothing short of mind blowing, and reinforced why I traveled around the world to such a remote spot. For those of you who haven't heard of the place, Kailash is one of the holiest mountains on the planet, at least for Buddhists and Hindus. Both believe Kailash to be the center of their spiritual universe and make it a goal to make pilgrimage to the mountain at least once in their (current) lifetime. Some prostrate themselves for hundreds of miles of the course of months to make this pilgrimage a reality. I thought I had it hard enough, crammed into a Landcruiser on a four day drive west of Lhasa. One thing I always find so interesting about the process of dreaming of places and then finally visiting them is just how ordinary they can be once you're there. There's trash, there are unpleasant people to deal with, and bad moods definitely don't take vacation (especially at 15,000 feet and after eating Ramen noodles for four days straight!). But then again, these trips inevitably provide moments (like this rain) that burn themselves deep into your memory and evolve into some of the most cherished of a lifetime. Difficult times are part and parcel of any adventure and occur whenever a person steps out of their comfort zone. Without an element of difficulty and discomfort the journey wouldn't be nearly as valuable, and in the end, I wouldn't trade these experiences for anything. When I'm old and decrepit I will still remember looking out across the Tibetan plateau and soaking in this spectacle and being overwhelmed by its beauty.

 

As always--- best viewed large on black (so press L)!

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Taken on January 28, 2011