Photo by @renan_ozturk // words by Ben Ayers @jetbutterflies ~
Swayambhunath – pictured here – is one of the most ancient temples in the Kathmandu valley. The complex was heavily damaged during the earthquakes that rocked the country last April. ~
As a group of UNESCO archaeologists meticulously dismantled some of the outlying monuments, using fine paintbrushes and recording every single brick, local residents hacked away at the main dome with hammers and chisels. The traditional lime and saffron mixture was replaced with a brand new coating of electric-white waterproof enamel. ~
This is a living human monument – While the archaeologists continue their quiet and focused brushing, the locals have long since resumed their daily circumambulations. They pace with steady footsteps clockwise around the temple – most chant ancient mantras, clasping worn rosary beads black with use. Others stop to send a text or snap a selfie. The foreign experts fiddle with their measuring tapes, the flocks of tourists watch and snap photos, the locals pray. The stupa shines like a new pair of dentures. #moneytemple #kathmandu #stupah @sadiequarrier @irving_matthew
natgeo (National Geographic) shared and selected for Lifestyle.