Aug 19, 2011

Roll and ascend up to Heaven

The majestically seated Oracle   
Do you want to know before hand whether you would ascend to heaven, the land of bliss (Zangdopelri Zhingkham) or descend down to the hell after you die? Do you wish to know how much misdeeds you have accumulated this life? Do you like to commit that henceforth you would change your actions?

Well, if your answers are all ayes, then visit a place called Zangtherpo in Bumthang. The place is close to the historic and holy Kurje Lhakhang. The site of the oracle (if that’s what is supposed to be called) is located below Zangtherpo Primary School.

The test of emptiness
There is a big rock that sits like a giant fat woman stretching her legs. From distance it resembles a frog that is about to jump. Many pilgrims visiting Bumthang make it a point to visit the famous Zangtherpo oracle.  

Testing their deeds

The way is simple. All you have to do is offer some prayers and start to roll a rounded pebble from the top of the big rock and watch if the pebble comes out of the big hole in the rock at the bottom. If you do not succeed in the first attempt, you offer some more prayers and roll again. And if your pebble successfully bounces out from the hole, after swirling in it for a while, then you are considered a pure soul. Pure souls go to heaven. I was told many have succeeded in their attempts.

After prayer comes the rock 
But the chances are so slim, which is that of our probability of ascending to the heaven. And unless you are cunningly wise, your pebble would only sink down, like I have carried out before a small crowd of stunned observers. Maybe with some tricks I could after all go to heaven if the oracle is right in its prediction. What amazes me however is the fact this oracle might have helped people become gentler in their actions and a little more considerate to others.

Where they land most of the time
Observers say that some pilgrims commit to carry out numerous religious activities after they visit the site. And that’s not bad at all.

But the big question is will this ancient oracle rock withstand the test of modernity?