Familiar Friends, Familiar Places: Lessons From the Dogs of Boudha
Familiar Friends, Familiar Places:
Lessons From the Dogs of Boudha
When I first came to Boudhanath after several months living abroad in other parts of Asia, one of the first things I noticed aside from the spectacular beauty of the stupa and the sweet gentle nature of the local people, was the large presence of street dogs dotting the pathway that circled the stupa. These pups, however, seemed like no ordinary street dogs, and I quickly became well aware of how many people, locals and foreigners alike, took the time to care for them.
Being an animal lover, I have come to develop a number of personal relationships with several of the dogs in Boudha during the course of my two years here. Each day as I walk to and from the Shedra I am met with several familiar faces—some napping in the sun in the same little nook and others joyfully running up to me for a pat on the head or a nibble of leftovers from my lunch.
In many ways, my experience with the local dogs has led me to a lot of personal reflection regarding the nature of life and friendship. Like all things, beings, whether of the human or animal world, come and go in and out of our lives. Each day, these furry creatures remind me both of the innocence and gentleness of friendship and the necessity to cherish each moment, as well as impermanence—a basic truth of our ever-changing lives.
~ Sara from the USA