What You See Is What You Get. This is a journal blog, an explore-blog, a bit of this and that blog. Sharing where the mood takes me. Perhaps it will take you too.

Menotra (men-oh-tra); the yatra you have during the meno years

After leaving the hill temple honouring the 'bringing down of the knowledge', we made the very short trip round the back of the hill to the Norbulingka Institute.  (Do click that link - there's much more there than I can give you here!)

You have had glimpses of the serenity over the past week, now for a full blast of peace and tranquility.  Even as we drove up to the drop off by the main entry path, the sheer silence of the place seeped towards us.  Coming down, then up, the slight incline we had first to cross a 'moat'; a small but significant waterway, gushing and cleansing even as one steps across it.  No bridge required other than in your heart.
note the moat, down behind Go-go's feet...

Moving up the steps and through the entry hall, we are welcomed by a traditionally dressed lady and a small reading/ contemplation room on the opposite side.  

Then we walk out into the first courtyard.  A few steps later, another 'moat', wider, stiller and steps which have streams frolicking down each side.  As we rise up these, we turn to the right and - first things first! - head for the cafeteria.  We were hungry from one hour before, but our intrepid driver/photographer/ tour guide had insisted on the wet-weather temple visit first.  We are glad he did.  It prepared us for the shift in gears which Norbulingka enforces.

Even sitting in the thoroughly modern eating environment, surrounded by Australian tourists competing for loudest voice at the table and the blaring radio, there was a sense of freshness.  Service style, it might be said, was a little lacking, but that seems almost mean to say.  The food and beverages were totally up to standard.

I had lassi and a Tibetan dumpling soup which was lightly seasoned and absolutely delicious.  Thinking I would never finish the giant bowlful, I discovered I was wrong.  Emm had a club sandwich and Go-go ventured to a noodle soup.

Revived and renergised, we re-entered the main courtyard of this more public area and began to tour the nooks and crannies.  The photos say more than I can about that.

The main temple area is again approached over water and I am sure that this was as much a cause of the clean and divine feel of the place as any amount of chanting and praying.  The prayer drums themselves are world famous; even if you didn't know the name, you are sure to have seen photos of these around the place!

This is a wonderful space and we lingered as long as we could before finally heading out again to the car.

On the way back to the ashram there was one more little stop for a look round the Naam Art Gallery.  This is small, but delightful.  I did not feel it at all appropriate to take photos there, but the link here will reveal something of it to you!

Returning to the ashram, the late afternoon and evening shaped up to be rather beautiful and I had the suspicion, we were in for something lovely in the morning…

Come back on Wednesday to find out just how much!  Tomorrow's menosukhi will complete the story of Jade's holiday and Tuesday's Less Speak More Peek post will have the theme RED…


  1. Just reading your description, I wanted to be at Norbulingka, and the photos of the rooms confirmed it, but my favourite photo was of a single bird in a small nest—exquisite!
    I'm looking forward to reading about Jade's holiday tomorrow.
    Meanwhile, I hope you are well, wherever you are.
    Luv, K

  2. Very beautiful! Thanks for sharing your trip with us!

  3. Norbulingka looks like a lovely place to explore. Looking forward to finding out what happened next morning.
    Cheers, Gail.
    PS Sorry about the unloveliness on the plane...

  4. Hari Om
    Thank you efurbuddies!! Glad you all are enjoying the trip-by-proxy. Trip back downunder had issues which of course will find their way here too!

    Watch this space. Yxx


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