“There are four places, Ananda, that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence. What are the four?

“‘Here the Tathagata was born!’ [Lumbini] This, Ananda, is a place that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence.

“‘Here the Tathagata became fully enlightened in unsurpassed, supreme Enlightenment!’ [Bodhgaya] This, Ananda, is a place that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence.

“‘Here the Tathagata set rolling the unexcelled Wheel of the Dhamma!’ [Sarnath] This, Ananda, is a place that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence.

“‘Here the Tathagata passed away into the state of Nibbana in which no element of clinging remains!’ [Kushinagar] This, Ananda, is a place that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence.

“These, Ananda, are the four places that a pious person should visit and look upon with feelings of reverence. And truly there will come to these places, Ananda, pious bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen, reflecting: ‘Here the Tathagata was born! Here the Tathagata became fully enlightened in unsurpassed, supreme Enlightenment! Here the Tathagata set rolling the unexcelled Wheel of the Dhamma! Here the Tathagata passed away into the state of Nibbana in which no element of clinging remains!'”

Mahaparinibbana Sutta

For details on Tricycle’s 2012 Pilgrimage to India, click here.

Image: from the Flickr photostream of Jakub Michankow

 

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