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This photo taken on Oct. 8 shows a great-sealed small jute bag for Buddha's soul, which was discovered inside one of two giant statues in Bamiyan, Afghanistan
They were intentionally dynamited and destroyed in 2001 by the Taliban, on orders from leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, after the Taliban government declared that they were "idols" (which are forbidden under Sharia law). International opinion strongly condemned the destruction of the Buddhas and was viewed as an example of the intolerance of the Taliban and of fundamentalist Islam. Japan and Switzerland, among others, have pledged support for the rebuilding of the statues.
The interesting thing about this monastery is that all Tibetans must make a pilgrimage to this one, at least once in their lives. They feel that when they die, they all go to hell, and if they had put enough yak butter in the yak butter lamps in the monasteries during their lives, that they would have enough light for their souls to make it to paradise. But first their souls had to go to the Samye monastery. The souls then hang in a soul bag inside the monastery awaiting their return to paradise, and eventual reincarnation. So that the souls know where to go, the Tibetans must make a pilgrimage to the Samye monastery at least once. I asked my guide if the souls had to take the leaky boat across the freezing cold river.
Originally posted by ColoradoJens
I had the idea that reincarnation was held as a belief by Buddhists. A mistranslated word/meaning seems to be probable. Thanks for the input - is this discovery of interest to you other than the soul bag?