Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Mongolia | Dornogov Aimag | Khamariin Khiid

We entered some slightly hillier country and soon came to a low pass surmounted by two ovoos known as the Women’s Ovoos. They are said to represent a woman’s breasts and a mother’s milk. By tradition all women are supposed to stop at these ovoos and while circumambulating them look back toward Khairkhan Uul, a mountain off to the distance in the southwest. According to tradition if they wish for good things while doing this their wishes will come true. In a depression a half-mile or so away from the ovoos can be seen the temples of Khamariin Khiid.
The Women's Ovoos
Gateway to Khamariin Khiid
The monastery turned out to be 34.9 kilometers as the crow flies (that's 21.7 miles ATCF to non-metric-heads) from Sainshand as measured by GPS, and perhaps a kilometer or two more by vehicle, as the road is pretty much straight.
The temples of Khamariin Khiid.
Stupas at Khamariin KhiidTemple containing the Statue of Ten Thousand Knives
Dush Lama and Enkhjargal, the two main monks at Khamariin Khiid
Detail of the Statue of Ten Thousand Knives
For more on the Statue of Ten Thousand Knives and Khamariin Khiid see "Treasures of the Sand—The Legacy of Danzan Ravjaa” by Venerable Dude Konchog Norbu.