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World’s largest Lenin head, installed in 1970 to celebrate Lenin’s 100th birthday.

Ivolginsky Datsan is a Buddhist Temple located in Buryatia, Russia, 23 km from Ulan Ude, near Verkhnyaya Ivolga village.

The datsan was opened in 1945 as the only Buddhist spiritual centre of USSR. In the course of time the little "Khambin's sume" changed into the Monastic centre with a residence of Pandido Khambo lama, the leader of all Russian Lamas.

It was the residence of the Central Spiritual Buddhist Board of the Soviet Union and later of the Buddhist Traditional Sangha of Russia, as well as that of Pandido Khambo lama, the head of the Russian Buddhists. Spiritual activity of the datsan is manifested in temple rites, medical practice, Buddhist education traditional system. Buddhist university «Dashi Choinkhorling» was opened in 1991 attached to the datsan.

Unique samples of old Buryat art, as thangkas, sculptures, ritual objects are gathered and preserved at the Ivolginsky datsan. Among the monastery's treasures there is a collection of old Buddhist manuscripts written in Tibetan language on natural silk, and a greenhouse with a sacred Bodhi tree.


Within the Datsan complex is the Korean style wooden Etigel Khambin temple which honors the 12th Khambo Lama whose body was recently exhumed.


In 1927, the 12th Pandito Hambo Lama of the Ivolginsky Datsan, Dashi-Dorzho Itigelov, told his students and fellow monks to bury his body after his death and to check on it again in 30 years. According to the story, Itigelov then sat in the lotus position, began chanting the prayer of death, and died, mid-meditation. The monks followed Itigilov's directions, but when they exhumed his body 30 years later, they were amazed to find none of the usual signs of decay and decomposition. On the contrary, Itigilov looked as if he had been dead only a few hours, rather than three decades. Fearful of the Soviet response to their "miracle", the monks reburied Itigilov's body in an unmarked grave. Itigelov's story was not forgotten over the years and on September 11, 2002 the body was finally exhumed and transferred to Ivolginsky Datsan where it was closely examined by monks and by scientists and pathologists. The official statement was issued about the body – very well preserved, without any signs of decay, whole muscles and inner tissue, soft joints and skin. The interesting thing is that the body was never embalmed or mummified. (Wikipedia)


A Ulan-Ude Mi-171 sits on the ramp at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport while the sun sets on the Superstition Mountains.




Mesa, AZ USA

This shot was taken by the riverside of the Uda river in Ulan-Ude. This is a basically Asian town in Siberia. See also here. Sept. 2008

#96 in Explore on Sept. 23, 2008

Buryatia, Бурятия, степь на границе с Монголией, steppe on the border with Mongolia

Asien, Russland, Sibirien, Burjatien, Ulan-Ude, Kljutschewskaja uliza Ecke Prospekt Awtomobilistow



[EOS 650D kit 18-135]


ISO 100

92 mm


8.0 sec

Found in Ulan-Ude, Buryatia, Russia

Trains to Mongolia and China spend 5 to 6 hours here while Russian border police check passports and take care of exit formalities.

The cars that will continue thru Mongolia to China have been switched out of train 362 and after Customs formalities are completed they will proceed across the Russian Mongolian border to Suhbaatar in Mongolia were the Mongolian entry Customs do their job.

Ivolginsky Datsan - a Buddhist Monastery near Ulan-Ude in Buryatia

Asien, Russland, Sibirien, Burjatien, Ulan-Ude, Uliza Baltachinowa

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