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The Magic of Cave Meditation

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Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.” — Saint Francis de Sales

Meditation for me is like oxygen something I cannot do without. My eight years of meditation experiences helps me to  know my inner self  at least for some hours in a day. My day starts with 45 minutes of meditation early morning and ends with half an hour of meditation in the evening.There are many benefits of meditation. It lowers stress, energizes you, help us to stay focused. Have a look to the diagram to know more.

Photo credit : Google

The mighty powers of meditation

The mighty powers of meditation 

 

Now I have a dream to go to cave and meditate. If you are mediator then you will definitely enjoy meditating in cave.  There are many Lama Gurus, Nuns and Saints who abide in cave retreat withdrawing the outgoing senses and mind for long time.   My source of inspiration is Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo . She is born 1943 is a Tibetan Buddhist nun in the Drukpa Lineage of the Kagyu school. She is an author, teacher and founder of the Dongyu Gatsal Ling Nunnery in Himachal PradeshIndia. She is best known for being one of the very few Western Yoginis trained in the East, having spent twelve years living in a remote cave in the Himalayas, three of those years in strict meditation retreat. Her book “Cave in the snow” is must read book for people who is seeking for  cave retreat.

must read book: Cave in the Snow"

must read book: “Cave in the Snow”   Photo credit : Google

“I took the vow to attain enlightenment in a female body, no matter how many lifetimes it may take.”

— Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo

Cave where JetsunTenzin Palmo meditate for 12 years

Cave where Tenzin Palmo meditated for 12 years, Photo credit : The Dakini Power

There are many caves in Nepal where people experiment with their inner self.  One of the solitary cave is in Pharping,  Nepal.  Pharping  is a small village South West of Kathmandu.  Outside of the town on the hillside resides Padmasambhava’s Meditation Caves known as  Asura cave.

 

Pharping

Pharping

Prayers Flag

Prayers Flag

The great master, Padmasambhava, attained the Mahamudra level of enlightenment through the practice of Vishuddha Heruka combined with the sadhana of Vajra Kilaya at the upper cave of Yangleshö, also known as Asura Cave. Asura Cave is also the retreat center for ‘practice’ .

Asura Cave

Asura Cave

lamp

Butter lamp

The Prayers in Seven Chapters is a proof that Guru Rinpoche meditate in Asura Cave.

Blessed

inner shrine of another cave nearby Asura cave

 

Butter Lamps

Butter Lamps

As it says in chapter five, the prayer requested by Nanam Dorje Dudjom, in ‘The Prayer in Seven Chapters to Padmakara, the Second Buddha’:
In the rock cave of Yangleshö in Nepal,
You accomplished the practice of Yangdak, ‘Essence of Great Bliss’
Liberating all obstacles and obstructors through Vajrakilaya;
And, in this sacred place you attained the siddhi of mahamudra:
To Dorje Tötreng Tsal, we pray!
To the Lotus-born Guru of Orgyen, we pray!

From “A Great Treasure of Blessings”. In the life story of Guru Rinpoche it says: “Then at Yangleshö, present day Pharping in Nepal, he practised the sadhana of Yangdak Heruka with the consort Shakyadevi, daughter of a king of Nepal. Powerful spirits caused a three-year drought, with famine and disease, and Padmasambhava asked his teachers in India for a teaching to counter them. Two men returned, laden with the tantras and commentaries of Vajrakilaya, and the moment they arrived, the obstacles were pacified. Guru Rinpoche and Shakyadevi both attained the third vidyadhara level, ‘vidyadhara of the great seal, or mahamudra’. Guru Rinpoche recognized that Yangdak is like a merchant engaging in trade-the achievement can be great, but so can the obstacles, whereas Vajrakilaya is like an armed escort; he is needed to guard against obstacles and overcome them. He then composed sadhanas of Yangdak and Vajrakilaya combined, and bound the guardians of Vajrakilaya to protect the teachings.”

another cave

another cave on the way to Asura Cave

Bad Karma or fate , asking for money

Bad Karma or fate , asking for money

Few years ago, I visited Asura Cave in Pharping.  Cave is something different for mediator.  Entering such a you  can feel a kind of sensation and positive vibes too. There is solitude in cave and it is so peaceful.  Going on a cave retreat  means you need to be free from everything. Actually, it is only meant for aspirants who have intense feelings of meditation. You need to bear hunger, cold, thirst and lost attractions for the world, sense objects etc.  Once you come back from cave retreat and practice in the daily life than it helps in spiritual growth. Cave is warm in winter and cool in summer.  I am sure I will get chance  to experience  the magic of cave meditation very soon.

Shrine inside cave

Shrine inside cave

There is another sacred cave in the high Himalayan Mountains. Lawudo cave is in Solu Khumbu, eastern region of Nepal. Lawudo (altitude 4,000 m.-13,000 ft.) is situated in the highest area of Solu Khumbu, the northeastern region of Nepal bordering Upper Tsang in Southern Tibet. Nestling in the jade green Himalayan Mountains, amidst the  juniper trees, mountain peaks and floating clouds is the most beautiful hermitage of Lawudo. This extremely beautiful and fascinating region is considered to be a “hidden valley” or beyal, a special country blessed by Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava).In fact, just above Lawudo is a large cliff known as the Dragkarma, or White Cliff, which is said to be the actual entrance to one of the secret valleys of Khumbu. Lama Zopa Rinpoche , the head of foundation of head of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition spent the last 20 years of his previous life in intense retreat in Lawudo.

Laudo Cave

Lawudo  Gompa Cave, photo credit : Lawudo Gallery

Another Lawudo cave

Another Lawudo Gompa cave,  photo credit : Lawudo Gallery

decoration inside Lawudo cave

Decoration inside Lawudo Gompa  cave, photo credit : Lawudo  gallery

Yes cave is a pleasant place  to dwell and practice.   Wise Shabkar   beautiful poem is more than enough to explain the meaning of cave.  Shabkar is a model hermit, yogin, and Tibetan Buddhist teacher .

In wild places where no one lives 

Are pleasant caves to dwell and practice
In wild places where no one lives
One’s consoling friends will be animals and birds.

In wild places where no one lives
One’s nourishment will be roots and berries.

In wild places where no one lives
Is the market where samsara  is traded for nirvana

In wild places where no one lives
Are the conditions favorable for realization

In wild places where no one lives
Is natural beauty delightful to behold

There is no possible way to express
The many virtues of staying in remote and lonely places
Far removed form human habitation

Therefore, heir of the victorious Ones
Go to a secluded place and practice

 

 

 

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8 thoughts on “The Magic of Cave Meditation

  1. Thanks, wonderful offerings!

    Blessings!

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  2. I can imagine a cave would take one miles away in their mind from what they experience in everyday surroundings. The peace, quiet, darkness…

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  3. Alisha, I’d love for you do do a post on your tips for meditation. 45 minutes is something I’d like to reach!! I do 1 hour plus of yoga and pranayam but as soon as I get to meditation I get distracted. Perhaps, do meditation first?
    Anyway, beautiful post as usual!!

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  4. What a coincident I am thinking to write about meditation for long time. I am collecting some pictures. 🙂 I will definitely give you tips on how to control your distract mind. You can do meditation first before yoga or vice versa. Thanks for your comment which energizes me to write more..

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  5. you are most welcome brother Bob !!

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  6. yes Donna it is much more peace than other places, more importantly there should be peace in our mind otherwise there is no use either you meditate in cave or home 🙂

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  7. Hi Alish ,you have a beautiful colorful opinions blog.Thank you for following my blog.Looking forward to read your new post.My warm regards.JMS

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  8. Hi Jalal
    Your blog is awesome too. It is a great source of inspiration for me. Thank you. 🙂

    Like

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