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AFGHANISTAN'S Giant Buddhas of Bamiyan

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Author Topic: AFGHANISTAN'S Giant Buddhas of Bamiyan  (Read 3188 times)
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« on: November 09, 2008, 08:54:43 am »


                                                  BAMIYAN AND BUDDHIST AFGHANISTAN

Frank Harold

If there were paradise on earth, it might look somewhat like Bamiyan.

Here is a green high valley (over 8000 ft), bounded by ochre cliffs.

Tall mountains flecked with snow stand to the north and south. The flat cultivated bottomlands are dotted with mud-brick farmsteads, each a toy fort with watchtowers in the angles; and a river runs through it.

The sense of apartness may have been what drew Buddhist monks here, to build a large monastic center watched over by those colossal statues of the Buddha staring out from the cliffs. 

But Bamiyan was never out of this world. A major trade route passed through the valley, linking
Central Asia with India and bringing both wealth and turmoil. The forts and guard-towers at every strategic spot are there for a reason; and those ruins up on the plateau are the legacy of the
Mongol's fury.

The mutilated Buddha statues lost their faces to the zealotry of Aurangzeb's soldiers in the 18th century, and were eventually blown up by Taliban zealots in March 2001.

Afghan history is not for sissies.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2008, 09:44:21 am by Bianca » Report Spam   Logged

Your mind understands what you have been taught; your heart what is true.

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