paw paw
This is not a narrative involving ghosts and hauntings but more of a spiritual and supernatural phenomenon that is connected to Buddhism and its beliefs. It is up to you as the reader, to decide whether to believe me or not.

Granny was descendant of a Tibetan aristocratic family called the “Jaray”. The jaray lived in the city of Lhasa and were extremely wealthy. They owned treasures and sacred artefacts and relics along with acres of land and property. They had servants who in turn had their own servants! 

Granny migrated to Bhutan after she married my grandfather who was a Bhutanese. They had to flee their homes during the time of great turmoil when China invaded and annexed Tibet in 1950. They travelled on foot over many days through dense forests and high mountain passes. One of my uncles, who was a new born baby at that time, had to be transported in a small wooden box on horseback. They were not able to carry much with them since they travelled on foot. They were only able to take with them a few possessions, antiques and relics.

One such relic that granny treasured was a statue of Jetsuen Dolma, or Shayama Tara. In Buddhism, Tara is the goddess of compassion. It is believed that Tara came into existence from a tear drop of Chenrizig (the Bodhisatava of infinite compassion) which fell to the ground and formed a lake. Out of it's waters rose up a single lotus, through which the goddess was born. 

Granny received the Tara statue as a gift from my grandfather, who got possession of the statue in a trade. He exchanged his Rolex Watch for the statue with a relative of His Holiness, the present 14th Dalai Lama. Granny and her family were also very close family friends with the Dalai Lama's family. Granny used to say that she remembers meeting His Holiness when they were just 9 or 10. His Holiness, at that young age fled Tibet not too long after, to get away from the Chinese authorities who were after his life. If you haven't seen the movie 7 Years in Tibet, starring the gorgeous Brad Pitt, then I urge you to go watch it! The boy who plays the young Dalai Lama, is a Bhutanese actor. Just throwing that in there! 

Granny had a premonition about the statue. She dreamt of tha Tara statue a year prior to actually receiving her. This statue of Tara is the best I have ever seen! She is simply mesmerizing to look at! It's almost as if she is alive. She portrays different expressions at different times. Tara is fully intact with ancient Buddhist prayers and scriptures still inside, unopened, since the day she was sculpted! 
 
Some years back, my mother, out of curiosity, sent pictures of the statue to the Smithsonian Museum to see if they could provide any information on it. They told her that the statue dated back to the time of the Chandragupta Maurya Dynasty, and that onl
y two of its kind existed in the world! The whereabouts of the other statue were unknown. They told her that they could not put a price to it. It was priceless! My mother says that the other statue of Tara might still be with the Dalai Lama's family somewhere in Tibet. 

Chandragupta was an Indian Emperor who ruled from c.321-c. 297 BC. The sculptors had become more skilled during this era. The statues that were forged during the Mauryan Dynasty were more delicate and the paintings were more elaborate and intricate as can be seen in photo comparisons with those statues that were sculpted before the Mauryan Dynasty. 

Chandragupta's grandson, King 'Ashoka The Great' would later go on to rule India as one of the greatest Emperors that ever lived. The Mauryan Dynasty conquered almost all of the Indian Subcontinent making the Mauryan Empire one of the largest and greatest empires that ever existed in the history of the world. King Ashoka is also credited for spreading Buddhism all over India. You can read up more on the Mauryan Empire online. There are tons of fascinating articles on the history of Buddhism! 


It is of no surprise that news of this rare Tara statue spread in Bhutan. For confidentiality purposes I will not be taking names or making direct references. All I will say is that some years ago even the Tibetan Prime minster in exile, Lobsang sangay, visited our home to pay his respects to the Tara statue. So, it was definitely a very big deal back then!

One day a member of a very high ranking lady got news of the statue. She sent her secretary to fetch the statue so she could take a look at Tara. In exchange my granny was given a pearl necklace. It was understood that granny would never see the statue again. Granny says that when the Tara statue left her house, she felt entirely empty. It was as though the very life had left her being. She felt extreme sadness in the days following. 

However, after a few weeks, the Tara statue was returned to granny. The high ranking lady demanded that granny give her pearl necklace back, which granny did so gladly.

Granny later heard from reliable sources, that the arrival of the Tara statue in the lady's home brought incredible bad luck to her and her family. She suffered bad dreams sleepless nights and disturbances. Her husband had even suffered a heart attack and nearly lost his life. During the time that it was in her possession, her home was even robbed. The thieves had stolen everything in the shrine, antique scrolls and relics, gold plated statues, offerings and money.

The only thing that was not stolen was the statue of Tara. It was the only item left in the shrine that was not taken! It was believed that the thieves could not carry the statue out of the shrine. The statue of Tara stands about 45 cm tall. She is heavy but even I can carry her. So, it was very strange that the thieves could not do so.

Anyway, Tara found herself back to late granny. She still lives with us in my home back in Bhutan. I know that Tara looks out for my family. We are eternally grateful and forever devoted to her. 

I am dedicating this narrative to my late grandmother. In the Tibetan language we refer to grandmother as "momola". My momola passed away in August of 2018. I still miss her deeply. She was truly someone special and not of this world. I would even say that, this world did not deserve her! Momola had incredible compassion and an extremely pure heart. She was truly a gem of person!   

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Darkness Prevails
@paw paw Thanks so much for these well written and cultural stories!
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paw paw
@Darkness Prevails Thank you for reading them! Happy to know that my writing is readable 😝
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