Beautiful Bagan Myanmar (Burma) – Part 3

English: Bagan, Myanmar. Bagan became a centra...

English: Bagan, Myanmar. Bagan became a central powerbase of the mid 11th century King Anawrahta who unified Burma under Theravada Buddhism. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Buddhism, ‘a science of mind’

Buddhism, ‘a science of mind’ (Photo credit: zensquared)

English: The 13th-century Htilominlo Temple at...

English: The 13th-century Htilominlo Temple at the Bagan Archaeological Site, Bagan, Myanmar (Burma) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bagan at sunrise, Myanmar

Bagan at sunrise, Myanmar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mo our guide offered us a choice between yet more Bagan temples or a taking tea with some Burmese monks, and to our surprise, we both opted for more temples! Our only proviso, was:

Is there something different that we have not already seen, like different architecture or another view on the history?

We started the morning with a visit to Gubyaukgyi Temple, where we saw  UNESCO preserved pairings, dating from the 13th century. Mo told us that some art was taken
by a group of Germans in 1899, including a gentleman called Mr. Thamann who apparently removed paintings and today they are allegedly in a Hamburg Museum. Perhaps, Angela’s Merkel’s Government will offer to return them as a gesture of German foreign policy? We were impressed with German efforts to clear mines in Cambodia, and maybe, they would like to impress the Burmese  by returning the artworks to their origins?

As Mo was probably one of our best guides in Asia, we tried again to learn a little more about Buddhism. Mo summarized it very simply for us, and told us that Buddhism was about controlling anger, greed and ignorance and seeking “right mindfulness”.

Our morning included visits to a number of famous temples, including:

Perhaps, the highlight of the morning was a visit to the Pyatthada Temple, built in the thirteenth century but apparently damaged by earthquakes every two hundred years, and most recently in 1975. We climbed to the top and once again had a spectacular panoramic view of the extremely beautiful Burmese countryside, punctuated by ancient Burmese architecture.

We then visited another village and as we were walking through, Mo started to explain to us his very special gift of “talking to snakes” and ability to insist that they go away.  Here we were, talking about some of the World’s most deadly, poisonous snakes, and Mo had the ability to communicate with them. Mo also offered that he did the same with dogs and gave us a free show with a barking dog –  he looked at it and the dog stopped barking and ran away. We decided not to ask for a demo with snakes! Mo was certainly very colorful and interesting, as well as an excellent guide.

We returned to our hotel mid-afternoon for some time to relax by the pool and reflect, as we were sadly leaving Bagan the next morning for Inle Lake. Watch out for our next blog on Inle Lake, one of the most beautiful places in Myanmar and possibly the whole World – open this link for a glimpse of Inle Lake’s magic!


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