IndiaSpiritual India

A spiritual journey to Bodhgaya – The land of Buddha

“The root of suffering is attachment.”- Gautam Buddha

Buddhism is the 4th largest religion in the world having almost 7% of the world’s population as followers.

Devotees in Bodhgaya temple
Devotees in Bodhgaya Temple

But as every big plant has grown out of a small seed, this strong and flourishing community, too founded by a young man named Siddharta Gautama who lived in the Indian region around 5th to 4th century BCE. 

“The trouble is, you think you have time.” — Gautam Buddha

At a very early age, his inclination towards self-discovery and understanding deeper dimensions of life grew tenfold and eventually led him to leave everything, family, identity, village, and all sorts of comfort behind only to meander here and there as a seeker of life and he finally attained enlightenment after a prolonged meditation under a Ficus Religiosa tree (now called Bodhi Tree) in Gaya district of Bihar, India.

Bodhgaya Temple
Bodhgaya Temple

The whole place has been now renamed after the great Buddha (which means the awakened one) who attained epiphany and then propagated his experiences and teachings about life and beyond in the different corners of the world.

“Happiness will never come to those who fail to appreciate what they already have.” — Gautam Buddha

Talking about Bihar, this state may not hold a great value now as far as tourism is concerned but it definitely has a glorious past. Universities like Nalanda and Vikramshila were the center of education in the past. The great Ashoka who later gave up his kingdom and took upon Buddhism to pursue the path of inner peace and awakening also lived in Bihar. The great mathematician Aryabhata, the founder of zero & place value system born and lived here too.

Mahabodhi Temple
Mahabodhi Temple

“If you light a lamp for somebody, it will also brighten your path. ” –Gautam Buddha

How to reach Bodhgaya?

The distance of Bodhgaya is around 100 km from Patna (the capital city of Bihar) and 15 km from Gaya ( a major city in Bihar). 

Several trains run between Patna and Gaya on daily basis and the distance between Gaya and Bodhgaya can be covered by sharing auto or private cabs.

The nearest airports are Bodhgaya international airport and Patna airport.

“Train your mind to see something good in everything.”- Gautam Buddha

Budhdha
Budhdha

Bodhgaya Temple

The Mahabodhi Temple which also knows as the great awakening temple is the most important temple to visit in Bodhgaya along with others such as the great Buddha statue (A 25 m tall statue of Buddha).

Budhdha Statue
Budhdha Statue

In the compound of Mahabodhi temple, you can witness several monks and devotees meditating under the Bodhi tree in an attempt to seek liberation.

“You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger.”–Gautam Buddha

We can also find the numerous temple of different countries in Bodhgaya which follow Buddhism or the teachings of the buddha some way or other. Ten such countries are:

  • Japan
  • China
  • Bhutan 
  • Cambodia
  • Tibet
  • Myanmar
  • Vietnam
  • Bangladesh
  • Mongolia
  • Thailand 
Temples of other countries
Temples of other countries

“Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.” –Gautam Buddha

What to expect from the Bodhgaya tour?

To be honest, it totally depends on what you seek from a particular place and how much you expect beforehand?

Bodhgaya is not a place filled with flamboyancy where you can have fun and spend your vacation. Rather it is a place full of devotion. The believers of the great Gautama Buddha and his teachings come here from all corners of the world to witness the wisdom and peacefulness this place still reverberates.

“With our thoughts, we make the world.”- Gautam Buddha

There is a lake adjacent to the temple and at the center of this mammoth lake, you can witness a statue of the great Gautama sitting cross-legged with utterly calmed and peaceful persona and asserting why he is being revered throughout the world and considered as the propagator of peace and prosperity and wisdom?

Budhdha statue in the middle of a lake
Budhdha statue in the middle of a lake

“No matter how hard the past, you can always begin.” –Gautam Buddha

No matter which religion we belong to but if our life is miserable by any means or to any extent, this place will surely bring a sense of tranquility. A sense of peacefulness which we usually don’t get everywhere. 

And if by any chance you are interested in spirituality or seeking the deeper dimensions of human life — then this place is nothing sort of a dream destination.

Bodhgaya Temple
Bodhgaya Temple

The kind of ambiance you get here itself pushes you to forgo the trivialities of life and seek something which is meaningful, non-compulsive, and unmiserable.

“You only lose what you cling to.” –Gautam Buddha

Bodhgaya tourism

Bodhgaya is the center of tourism in the state of Bihar in India. Even though it is only moderately maintained as far as tourism is concerned here but still the purpose of visiting here gets fulfilled fairly well and you won’t face inconvenience or security issues of any kind and this is what matters in the end.

Bodhgaya Bihar
Bodhgaya Bihar

“Rule your mind or it will rule you.” –Gautam Buddha

Considering you are not familiar with the place, locals there might overcharge you for the services or try to lure you with a scam of any kind (which is the case with every major tourist destination) better be careful and cautious while visiting any temple in Bodhgaya.

Bihar is still the cheapest place to visit and live as compared to the rest of India. Solely because of fewer tourism options and minimal tourists influx.

“Let the past make you better, not bitter.” –Gautam Buddha

Nalanda University, Rajgir, and few major tourist attractions like Gol Ghar, Maner Sharif, Takhat Sri Harimandir Ji (Patna Sahib), and museum in Patna you can visit along with this serene trip to Bodhgaya as these places are in the radius of 100 km.

Bihar Tourism
Bihar Tourism

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” Gautam Buddha

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Ranjan
Ranjan
A blogging and traveling aficionado. Guitar is the only possession I care about. Follow me on Instagram @ thrillwrill for more of my trip pictures.
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