Tibet

Photographs by Shaun O'Boyle

Lhasa, all roads in Tibet eventually lead to Lhasa, and that was my goal. I was more than a little surprised at the amount of Chinese presence in the city, as in they have taken over and built an abundance of really ugly concrete buildings everywhere, and paved the place over. The Potala palace still dominates the  city on top of Marpo Ri hill, although it is looking down upon a vastly changed city since its construction during the 17th century. 

The pilgrims path around the Potala palace. In my trip across Tibet toward Lhasa I saw along the road side many pilgrims heading to Lhasa who would stand, kneel, then prostrate themselves out on the ground, and then return to a stand, saying prayers all the time, and this is how they made their way to Lhasa, slowly inching their way one body length at a time. Many wore wooden blocks on their hands and knees. Some travel many hundreds of miles this way. The Potala palace was their goal, as well as some other religious sites in the city.

Incense burning from a niche in the wall where prayers are offered.

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