An Unsavoury Experience In Potala Palace in Tibet

Many people have visited the Potala Palace in Lhasa,  Tibet, and recounted their grand and unusual psychic experience when they were there.  For me,   I had a rather unflattering encounter during my trip to this Tibetan sacred place of worship some eight years ago.

I recall in the morning when I arrived at Potala Palace,  I was suffering acute diarrhea,  prompting me to run to the nearest public toilet to relieve myself immediately.   I lumbered to the nearest public loo and was aghast when I opened the toilet door and saw un-flushed feces piling up to ankle depth.  The sight and stench were so revolting that I scurried away in panic.    Next, I went around and located the communal latrine where the monks were supposed to relieve themselves.  There I was confronted with another cultural shock.  The shit holes were neatly arranged in rows of rectangular openings with two wooden poles hanging from the ceiling for arm support. The Tibetan monks wore long robes that shielded their modesty while they perched above those shit holes performing the hygiene routines. I could not bring myself to defecate there as I wore a pair of jeans and felt terribly embarrassed publicly baring my butts.


So, I had to bear the unbearable and suffer the insufferable by forcibly holding back my excreta to complete my tour of the location.  And, it was while I was moving around, I instinctively kept chanting the Six Syllabus Mantra – Om Mani Pad-mi Hum;  it worked miraculously by relieving my diarrhea and suppressing my urge to discharge myself.

This episode actually convinced me that the mantra chanting actually works,  no matter how insignificant or trivial the circumstances.

People often mistakenly feel that when prayers or mantra chants are answered they must always be related to major or significant events,  life-threatening situation or big windfall.

Anthony Leong

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