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Ladakh Diaries Part 9: Lamayuru

Lamayuru is one of the most ancient monasteries in Ladakh, the oldest surviving structure dating to the 11 th century CE. What makes this monastery particularly fascinating, is its location, amidst what is today called the “moonscape”, for the spectacular natural rock formations, which truly are “out of the world”! As per legend , there once existed a huge lake in this area, populated only by the Nagas (serpents). It was prophesized that there would be a great monastery built here. This prophecy came true when the great acharya Naropa (756-1041 CE) arrived. He emptied the lake, meditated for many years inside a cave, and built the first monastery here. The present structure is a new one, built around the cave where Acharya Naropa is said to have meditated. This legend seems to fit well with the geological formations seen in the area, which suggest this was a paleo-lake, which disappeared around 1000 years ago. Lamayuru is about 130 km from Leh , and the Indus River flows along th

Serving Water to the Thirsty

It is said that the best charity is giving food to the hungry and water to the thirsty. The latter is especially true in the hot summer months, when a parched throat can make life feel miserable, and nothing is more welcome than a glass of cool water. All over India, there are people who take this literally, and serve water on the roads in summer, free of cost. There are some who place earthen pots of water by the side of the road, under a shady tree and make sure it is re-filled, while others set up water coolers at public spaces. 

While in Jaipur, at a temple we visited, a girl sat at a small window with a pot of water, patiently serving every thirsty soul.....

I also noticed these huts all over the place, especially near road intersections. It was only when I stopped to take a closer look that I realised that these were bamboo huts with an earthen pot of water inside. A person was in attendance, serving the people who came to quench their thirst, and re-filling the pot when necessary.

Interesting way of performing a service to those in need, wouldnt you agree?

 I just wonder who has organised and arranged these water huts all over the place. Unfortunately, my trip was too short for me to do any digging. If any of you have any further information, please do leave a comment and I will update the post accordingly. 


  1. Water is a first need in Summer so these people has a good job..

    1. True, water is indeed the first need, but these people do a great job especially considering that all these are usually free.

  2. during hot summer month these people come as savior . in bangalore they distribute butter milk near temple .

    1. Absolutely, Samaresh! I have seen people distributing butter milk in temples in Chennai too..

  3. தவிச்ச வாய்க்கு தண்ணீர் is the phrase in Tamizh( water for thirty mouth).

    This happens even in Hyderabad. I salute those organisations which take up this charity.
    I also think, this is our tradition form those good old days, where in it was never denied.( like the choulteries for travellers of bygone decades).

    1. Thanks for the phrase, Vetrimagal! thats what I was looking for! yes, there are such organisations all over the country, and they do an admirable job! and they rarely advertise themselves, so we know little about them.. surprising, but commendable in this era.. and those choultries were great places too.. clean, comfortable, and meant for rest... to those who needed it

  4. This is wonderful ! Charity begins at home !

  5. such a great creation...will be most appreciated....


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