#InspireAFragrance – 'MY MOMENT OF DALAI LAMA'

volunteering teaching in mcloedganj

I have always believed that every place has its own fragrance. So does every living organism, every ingredient and every season. But what I didn’t know was that even a ‘moment’ can have its own fragrance…

It was in 2013, in Mcloedganj, Dharamshala, where I was volunteering for a month, teaching English to the Tibetans in exile, that the news came by – His Holiness the Dalai Lama was only hours away to enter the town, and pay his visit to the Dalai Lama temple. Everyone was talking about it and it was almost like preparing for a celebration. I had never seen so many exiled Tibetan locals, monks and nuns coming out of their houses and crowding the streets at the same time, all to catch a glimpse of him.DSCN0545-001

It is said that if you get to see Dalai Lama once in your life, you are among the gifted few in the world. In moments there was security, and thousands of people stood obediently in lines on both the sides of the streets leaving space for his car to peacefully cross by. It was almost like a decorum they followed, a ritual to welcome him every single time he came. I was mesmerized. But just minutes before his car finally arrived, came that moment of fragrance…

A local standing next to me quickly handed over to me a Tibetan incense stick for myself and asked me to light it. I looked around and almost everyone on the street was holding one. Can you Imagine what a place would scent like if thousands of incense sticks were lit together to welcome a holy man? And there he came, waved and smiled, in an aura so clean and scented that I had no words, all I have is just a fragrance of that moment tightly tucked in my travel memory forever.

Not just any incense, it was the fragrance of the Tibetan incense stick. Coming from a centuries old tradition, Tibetans are known to hand roll their sticks to produce an aroma used as an aid for mediation, relaxation and calming the restless. Even one is enough to clean your mind, but in this moment there were thousands to clean a town for the welcome of his holiness. For me this fragrance was ‘My moment of the Dalai Lama’…!! 

– From the Editor’s heart for #InspireAFragrance by http://www.godrejaer.com/