Chim-puk Hermitage

The Chim-puk Hermitage is located on northeast of Samye Monastery, Shannan Prefecture, Tibet, at an average altitude of 4300 meters. The reason why Chim-puk has become a spiritual practice with a flourishing population is as tightly bound to the local climate and small environment here. The Chim-puk Hermitage is ringed on three sides by mountains with the open place at south of the ravine directly opposite to the broad valley of Yarlung Zangbo River, viewing grand and majestic. Due to its location in the depths of the mountains and gurgling streams as well as the dense vegetation, the hermitage has a mild climate throughout the year without extreme cold in winter and extreme hot in summer, being a place with both good climate and beautiful scenery. That may be a plausible explanation for many eminent monks and laymen regarding this garden as a sacred land of self-cultivation and practice through the ages. Padmasambhava who is of a great reputation also had been practiced here. Furthermore, it is heard that not only Tibetans were practicing here but also Sichuan people. The religious flags far away and nearby echoed with each other can be seen. Here, all rivers run into sea and as long as you want to practice, you can also find a stone house to live and practice. Most mountains around the green park are loess colored barren hills except in this ravine you can appreciate verdant trees, wild flowers everywhere, gurgling streams and gregarious birds, a scene of attracting scenery and twittering birds and bloomed flowers spreading before you.

Thanks to eminent monks such as Shantarakshita and Padamasambhava practicing in the park, there left many relics of a sage. At the end of Pre Tibetan Buddhist period, a large number of scripture rolls have been buried here and in the early Post Tibetan Buddhist period, a lot of people dug the hidden treasure. As a matter of fact, Chim-puk Hermitage is as famous as the Samye Monastery. Therefore, Tibetans deem that if someone go to Samye Monastery without visiting the hermitage is similar to never been to Samye Monastery. According to the legend, the mountain where Chim-puk Hermitage is situated once had 108 practice holes, 108 celestial burial platform and 108 holy springs. There are still many ascetics from far away come here to devote themselves to practice with its size is equivalent to a small village. Because of a lot of gymnosophists gathering at the hermitage in spite of hardships and poverty, many Tibetans even tourists all regard the hermitage as the holy land.

Gobi Desert-like wasteland and disk mountain road are covered with a thick layer of sandy soil, with the regolith on the surface is about an inch in thickness. Whenever there is wind, the dust was blown about all over the sky by the wind, covered the sun and filled the sky which made people cannot open their eyes. Consequently, a pair of sand-proof glasses and mask is strongly suggested to take with. Despite it is kind of difficult to encounter rain in this arid river valley, it may still rain sometimes and the slurry all over the ground then will make you easy to slip down. Accordingly, it is best to have a walking stick with you just in case of slipping and moreover, the stick can also be a good helper in mountain climbing when you get the Chim-puk Hermitage. Normally, it will take you about 15 minutes to arrive at the hermitage from Samye Monastery and the journey along is almost marching on in droughty desert and barren hill road with little water along the trip. Therefore, plenty of drinking water will be indispensable at that time. Furthermore, being exposed to the blazing sun for quite a long time in the vast wilderness is painful. So please wear a sun visor additionally.

It is suggested to find a place in the town of Samye to live on the first day, and then to visit the temple or you can also go out around the temple for a walk, like to shoot a beautiful panoramic view of Samye by climbing Haiburi Mountain. On the second day, take a truck to visit the Chim-puk Hermitage and walk back to Samye Monastery on the afternoon or live there on that day and return on foot on the third day. Also, you’d better look up some information about the Chim-puk before viewing it or you will be ignorant and know little in face of the miracles full of mountains.
 

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