This Tibetan Mountain Is Sacred to Adherents of Four Different Religions

This appears in Slate

Why is Tibet’s roughly 22,000-foot Mount Kailash sacred? Depends who you ask.

Jains believe it’s where a saint achieved enlightenment. Bonpos believe it’s where their founder descended to Earth. Hindus believe it is where the god Shiva lives. Both Buddhists and Hindus believe it’s the spiritual center of the universe.


What they’ll all agree on is that any good believer will make the pilgrimage there at least once and complete the 33-mile lap, known as the kora, around the mountain. An exemplary pilgrim will walk the loop 13 times. One seeking enlightenment will do it 108 times. Some will take several weeks to circumambulate, performing prostrations the whole way.

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