Tuesday, February 11, 2014

How To Visit Bhutan : My Story!


As a Westerner I had a lot of baggage, yet I was naked in Bhutan. You can read about my visit in my memoir "From Hollywood to God" on Amazon.com. This blog is a sneak peek into Shangri-La, with tips on how you can visit. One of the most spectacular places I stayed was the Dewachen Hotel in what the locals called The Valley of the Cranes.
Dewachen Hotel
In this majestic 16-bedroom palace is hidden in the valley of Phobjikha, Gantey Gompa, which is 3,000 feet above sea level. It is here that I discovered "Enlightenment." This version was not what I had imagined which was my eyes closed in a meditative state feeling one with the universe. Instead, I was high up from the nectar of the gods, floating around in half moon goblets, which were literally rolling around the table. Kunga had given us a bottle of the finest Whiskey known to man, and our first experience with Nirvana.
Kunga, myself and Hans
Our Bedroom at the Dewachen Hotel
We told stories with a common thread, laughter. It is the same weaving in every language. The next morning I discovered another unique quality of Bhutan, no one gets a hang-over. The air is too thin, it is pure oxygen up here, high in the Himalayas, bordered by India and China. 

We had a huge breakfast of farm fresh eggs, homemade bread, and sweet coffee. After we hiked into the mountains to visit some of the 2,000 monasteries, sprinkled on the peaks.  I wanted to visit everyone hoping to experience God. 

We were driven to the base of each mountain by our guide, Kunga. Our tour with him as called "Ten Monastery, in 10 days". Of these the most famous one was "Tiger's Nest!" It was six hours to the peak. At night we stayed in exotic guest rooms in Bed & Breakfast Style homes, or flat our place in the mountains! Some were painted in primary colors, representing the gross national product, "Happiness!" Here's our bedroom below, with an old wise man painted above is.

Upon reaching the peak, we saw a old wooden door way into a monastery. A monk was sitting on the edge of the mountain, gazing out at the view. I knew he was having a relationship with God, and I was jealous. I felt like an out cast in the world, the only one who could not feel God, either they were delusional, or I was not worthy of filling up with love and joy, which is what they said was the feeling of God.

We took off our shoes to enter the monastery. It is custom to bow three times to the monk that greets you. This bow included kneeling to the ground, arms stretched out on the cold stone floor and your face facing the floor, until your head rest on it.  I felt I was finally bowing correctly, when I felt humble in the presence of greatness. This happy monk had master being alone on a mountain in a cave his entire life, praying.
Tiger's Nest Bhutan
The doors to the monasteries are always open and everyone is welcome. Outside you can hear the flutter of a thousand pray flags blowing in the wind and you can smell sweet jasmine lingering from the altars.

Kunga asked for the monk's permission to open the sacred cabinet. "Kelly open your arms" he said.
Kunga placed several large roll of ancient scrolls handwritten by the monks into my arms. I was holding the oldest writings known to humanity, the Vedas. These were the revealed scriptures which the Dharma is based on. Kunga knew that I could be changed by higher levels of frequencies. He had imagined that the Dharma phenomena would reveal God. The teachings are in Sanskrit, for the  highest good for All, which is the "cosmic law and order."

We were surrounded by candles, incense and grace.  I longed to feel connected to God, but still felt empty. I was not sure what God was supposed to feel like.  I was hoping to hear His voice inside my heard, or experience a visual encounter, something I could write about and share, something I could believe in. The monk gave me a candle to light. "This is for your wish to be granted" he said. I traveled across the world find God but, knowing I had only one wish I decided to trade finding God, for a blessing for my two children, Stephanie 20 and Michael 24.

As we said our goodbyes to leave the monastery, the monk motioned for my hand. Then he tied a red strings around my wrist. Kunga translated for him, "I give you my blessing." I gave him a formal bow---all the way down to the cold floor, three times. His presences was hard to leave.  I felt safer with him, than inside my own body. It was strange to trust someone more than your yourself. There would be "Self Actualization" work ahead. :) We all bowed as we walked backwards out of the sacred space. The mountain was covered in fog—playing peek-a-boo between the 108 tiny Stupas. These Stupas held the remains of enlightened monks, yet looked like dollhouses. 
I took this photo above of the remains of an enlightened monk. This was on Kunga's brother's altar, it's his teacher's, teacher's enlightened body, which exploded upon his death into tiny white balls, called,  Rainbow body.  I asked to photograph the enlightened sacred rainbow body and was given a concerned look by the monks in the room. Know one had ever photographed such a shared relic. I wanted to bring this back to share with you, my experience to believe and see what was real or not. But, as you can see, something wild happened. The remains, the tiny white balls, "Rainbow Body" jumped out of the glass container. Maybe, this monk is here now I thought, playing with me. 

Kunga took us to see the Stupas, the tombs of the monks.  I walked through them, trying to use my mental energy to wake them.  "Please give me a sign that you are here," I said silently in my head",  hoping to prove life after death. Giant Clouds moved through the sky. I heard nothing back. A bird flew overhead and I wondered who knew more about eternity, us humans or nature?


I recalled Kunga's story of the Black-Necked Cranes. The Bhutanese believe these birds to be sacred and protect their migrations, by not allowing electrical wires in the sacred valley. Those who live in this region use solar panels. The farmers say, the Black-neck Cranes with a wingspan of 8 feet, circle over the valley to bless it. It must be true, because the Valley of the Crane is blanketed in vibrate lime green grass and the farmer's crops abundant. If that isn't amazing enough, these cranes mates for life.

His Majesty Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema
His majesty King Jigme Wangchuck said that instead of relying on Gross Domestic Product as the best indicator of Bhutan's progress, it should instead consider its "Gross National Happiness. To maintain this goal he only allows  7,000 visitors into the Kingdom of Bhutan a year, and by Royal Invitation only. To get a invitation I wrote a letter to the King asking if I could come to his land to learn the Dharma from the local monks. 

The King granted me a VISA, and with the help of my wonderful guide Kunga I wired seventy five hundred into a bank account in Bhutan. This payment included my airline ticket and all hotels and meals for 14 days, plus the $250 a day paid to the Royal Family.

I was a little scared about the wire being received, and hoped Kunga was honest. I risked it all for a hike in the Himalayas hoping to meet God. Kunga confirmed the funds were received and purchased our airline tickets, which were waiting for us in the Bangkok Airport. 


We landed in Paro, Bhutan and touched the ground at the foot of Thunder Dragon. Greeting us were eagles soaring high above the Himalayan trails, rivers were teaming with fish and the wild life was made with humor, check out the Takin— a moose and deer mix. A full circle rainbow encased us and pillowing clouds the size of city blocks danced in sky.
The Kingdom of Bhutan!
I discovered the biological state of untouched land. When left alone the land's minerals are richer in color and without pollution the natural mists creates  rainbows, as common as taxis in New York.
We spent two weeks hiking in on untrodden trails through the Majestic Himalayas in all their fiery and fury, grandeur and glory! But, their majestic size did not impress me as much as the silence within me, that echoed through the land. The hours of hiking with no conversation, radio, TV, or cell phones, caused the silent station within me to become louder, and it scared me, upon first introduction.

After a while, the silence was replaces with delicate sounds of nature, the melody of wild bugs, then exotic bird songs. I witnessed flowers that "only bloom for a single day" and I could have sworn that the forest spoke, but the words are not translatable, they came more as an inner emotional state. At first, fear erupts from such silence, the a deep haunting remembrance of something lost— my connection with nature. I have yet to fully grasp the profound affect this country had on me, the wise old mountain, the auspicious creatures, the exotic colored flowers reaching for the sun, the strange animals,— who have no hesitation in their purpose and fulfillment of life.


To know him is to love the Himalayan trails, my guide Kunga!
Bhutan, is a taste of nature. I am now a Naturalist. I don't eat animals and I have more integrity towards my self, thanks to the land of the Dragon. My memoir is on Amazon and Kindle.
Sneak-A-Peek Below!
My first stop was to The World Sound Healing Conference in San Francisco. I wanted to understand the science of frequencies, especially if everything in the universe was vibrating to their own unique song!

I waited in the large conference room to hear Dr. Susan Yale's lecture on the Harmonic Oscillator.

The room went black and three giant pyramids projected on a movie screen.


"You can hear the sound of "nature" between the Pyramids of Giza," Dr. Yale said, pausing, "it's a perfect F Sharp."

No one moved. She spoke slowly, "If you knew there was a place in the world where you could hear God, would you go?"

I always wanted to sleep on the Nile!"

~ from my Memoir, (click link—"From Hollywood to God"  Kelly Granite Enck on Amazon books and Kindle.
Giza, Egypt
Hiking through Bhutan

Tiger's Temple, Thailand
River Kwai, Thailand

The Kingdom of Bhutan



Peru
Tiger's Nest Bhutan


Click link— "From Hollywood to God"  to read my memoir.

4 comments:

  1. Great Article on your visit to Bhutan. I would love to share it. Can I please have your permission to post it on my travel website with credit to you. Thanks
    Jigme
    jig_tt@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello Jigme!
    I hope my visit to Bhutan has brought you more tourists! :)
    Joy! Kelly

    ReplyDelete
  3. NiceNice blog, I like your blog you also see this topic blog, I like your blog you also see this topic

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Kelly Granite Enck