One interesting phenomenon I noticed at Namdroling Monastery in India had to do with the issue of stupas and faith. Lining the monastery’s western flank is a line of 16 substantial, brilliantly white stupas, eight built in 1993, and eight in 2000. Prior to this, however, the first stupa erected at Namdroling was a modest , unadorned, poured-pebble-and-concrete structure, which was there even when I first visited in 1991. And in the morning? When the circumambulators emerge to accumulate meritorious laps around these sacred reliquaries? The 16 stupas stand virtually bereft of the faithful...
...and the small stupa, tucked away in a corner, looks like Indy after the green flag drops:
Why? The answer is simple. The small stupa enshrines a relic of Terton Migyur Dorje, and as with such stupas in Tibet, has acquired the reputation as a site for remarkable physical and mental healing. I joined the throng at the Migyur Dorje Stupa each morning, but took three turns around the 16, too, not wanting them to feel too forlorn.
Some local residents, though, just couldn't be bothered. I actually felt this way, too, after about 9am in the sun:
What’s so special about Terton Migyur Dorje? Well, I see that the Tibetan Buddhism Resource Center, bless ‘em, has made excerpts of the English translation of his liberation story available online, so check it for yourself.