World > Asia > India > Bodhgaya

In 2008, I visited Bodhgaya, India. It is a small village and serves as the heart of Bihar, India's poorest state with the least percentage of educated people. Nevertheless, it holds a large key to Buddhist histroy, this is the place that was said to have been the place, under a specific Bodhi tree, that Guatam Buddha found his enlightenment. Contrasting to the thousands of Buddhists pilgrims coming from all over the world to visit the Mahabodhi temple, there is huge amounts of poverty in the area, one must only step outside of the temple walls to see this. Tibetan refugee camps also line the outside of the town, serving hot momo's in welcoming tents. I had a chance encounter with Anuj and his family whome warmly welcomed me into their home, feeding and offering me all that they could afford. I then entered a 10 day silent retreat at the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition centre in the outskirts of town and it was here that I studied the eightfold path as taught by Buddha. Here are a few images that depict my 1 month stay in Bodhgaya.