Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The new faces of Mahiyangana, Sri Lanka.

The new lake being constructed.

A new statue of Lord Buddha.
A baker's van doing the sales rounds.

A new lake is being constructed in front of the Chaithya. There is a large statue of Lord Buddha and a Baker's van one of many plying this area. I hope to see it's beauty with the lake full of water.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The bed of the Mahawely Ganga, Mahiyangana, Sri Lanka.

The distant hills seen from the river bed of the Mahawely Ganga.
The dry river bed from which sand is quarried and taken to places as far away as Colombo.
The part of the river still flowing and serving as a bathing spot..
The waters of the Mahaweli arising from the Adam's Peak area have been dammed and the waters diverted for power generation and irrigation. I took these pictures during the dry season close to the Mahiyangana Chaithya. The vast sandy bed is exposed and the water flowing downstream is still quite significant. The lush greenery, even during the dry season, in the paddy fields of Mahiyangana attest to the success of the irrigation schemes.


Monday, October 29, 2012

Dawn at Mahiyangana, Sri Lanka.

Dawn at Mahiyangana.
The 'Mahout' arriving in the morning to start the day's work.
The elephant is so human. Watch video of an elephant in the morning after a night's rest. Note how the Mahout clears the ground and gets the elephant to lie down. He rubs its back to the obvious pleasure of the elephant.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

'Kapruka pooja' - Mahiyangana Chaithya, Sri Lanka.

The Mahiyangana Chaithya
The cloth being ceremonially carried to the Chaithya.
Draping the cloth round the Chaithya.
The Chaithya draped round with the stitched cloth of multiple Buddhist flags.
The Mahiyangana Chaithya was the place where the Sacred Hair Relic and a bone of the neck of Lord Buddha is enshrined. It is considered an act of merit for a Buddhist to visit this site. 'Kapruka' is a mythical tree which fulfils ones wants. This tree is found in the adobe of the Gods. A 'Kapruka Pooja' of covering a Sacred Chaithya with cloth right round, is said to grant all ones wishes in life. The above is a series of pictures I took of a 'Kapruka Pooja' for the Mahiyangana Chathya.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

'Look-out point' and the 18 hairpin bends leading to Hasalaka, Sri Lanka.

Panorama from 'look-out point' past Madugoda
View of the 'Sorabora Wewa' from the 'look-out point'

There is a 'look-out point' past Madugoda before the 18 hairpin bends leading on to Hasalaka and Mahiyangana. There is always a severe blowing here. The air rising from the Mahiyangana valley blows through the gap in the hills at this point. You can see three water-reservoirs in the valley below. The one shown in the second picture is the 2000 year old 'Sorabora Wewa'. The video below shows the 18 hairpin bends after this point.
18 hairpin bends

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hunnasgiriya, Sri Lanka.

The highest point on the Kandy - Mahiyangana highway, the town of Hunnasgiriya.
Looking down into the Mahiyangana valley.
The road from Kandy starts ascending from Theldeniya till it reaches its summit at Hunnasgiriya town. It is cold, windy and the mist covers the road very often. Then the descent starts and goes past Madugoda on its way to Hasalaka and Mahiyangana.

Ascent to Hunnasgiriya from Theldeniya

Hunnasgiriya to Madugoda and beyond before the 18 hairpin bends.

An elephant gets a ride

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Gangaramaya Buddhist Monastery, Lewalla, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

A 'Dewalaya'
The 'Bo Tree'
Inside the Gangaramaya temple on the road to Lewalla, Kandy. This is a very old temple bordering Udawaththakale on the side of the Mahawely Ganga. It has a lovely view of the valley below. It also has some paintings of the Kandyan period of Sri Lankan history.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The trinket seller, Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

As an early teenager he had picked up a cigarette tin lying in the childrens' park bordering the Kandy Lake in the year 1971. As there was a rattling noise inside he had thought that there was a rat inside the tin and smashed it on a rock. The 'cigarette tin' exploded and he lost his thumb. It was the aftermath of the 1971 JVP insurgency. This must have been a hurriedly discarded 'cigarette tin hand-bomb' made by the JVP activists who used these during the insurrection of 1971.  He earns his living as a seller of trinkets on the outskirts of the Dalada Maligawa. He seemed a happy man and said that he had married off his children and his burdens in life have eased off.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Moat at the entrance to the Dalada Maligawa
A stone cutting on the wall - Guardian Deity
The aesthetic sense of the designer of the Dalada Maligawa is well represented by these pictures.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Scenes at the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

A water cistern of stone donated to the Maligawa,
The 'Audience Hall of the former Kings of Kandy.
Wetting the flowers to be used as offerings.
Bell and water bowl made of brass.
The Audience Hall was where the articles of the agreement by the Kandyan Chiefs with the conquering British was signed. It was later used as the venue of the Supreme Courts.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

'Dhaana Salaawa' - Alms-giving hall, Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Row of statues of Lord Buddha.
More statues.
Paintings depicting the landmarks in the life of Lord Buddha.
The size of the hall.
This hall adjoins the building housing the Sacred Tooth Relic and is used in the alms-giving ceremony to the Buddhist monks. It is filled with statues of Lord Buddha. Note the 'inverted lotus' design on the supporting columns. There are pictures depicting landmarks in the life of the Buddha lining the walls.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Artifacts inside the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka

"Gajasingha' -  Mythical Lion with an elephant's face - Strength and wisdom.

A mythical animal
Design on pillar 
The door lock
Quite a lot of works on the stone pillars are presumably from the early part of the 19th Century PE when the Maligawa was constructed. They could be even earlier.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Scene outside the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy.
Inside the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy.
The Dalada Maligawa, repository of the sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha has a lot of attraction to Buddhists and non Buddhists.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Embakka Dewala, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

The 'store-room' of the temple.
An old 'Ambalama' - resting hall for pigrims, in ruins. Note the granite supporting pillars.
An 'Ambalama' still in use.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Artifacts at Embekka Dewala, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

A bird motif on a woodcut.
Decorated granite doorway

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Wood-work, Embekka Dewala, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Floral design
A bird
A seated female
Two females

Monday, October 15, 2012

Wood-work, Embekka Dewala, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

Plaited tape design
Mythical double-headed bird
Entwined swans
Mother and child

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Wood-cuts, Embekka Dewala, Kandy, Sri Lanka.

A stylized bird
? Females
Entwined birds
Floral design
The names of the persons who did these works is unknown. The self had no place in this type of art. It was something which after a long period of training came from within.