National Geographic : 1966 Oct
so close that one can feel the breath of its avalanches. To the north looms Taweche, tether-post of the heavenly horses, a peak that still defies climbers. Khumbila, Ama Dablam, Kwangde, and Thamserku stand guard, tall sentinels of unyielding rock, man tled by eternal snow. In a forest of stunted trees around the mon astery, live musk deer and blood pheasant so tame they ignore passers-by. Painting No longer Brings Profits In the monastery dwells a lama regarded as the reincarnation of the monastery's founder, the Lama Gulu, who died of shock in 1933 when an earthquake destroyed the first build ing on the site. I once visited the Rimpoche, as reincarnates are known, in his beautiful, mural-decorated apartment at the monastery. We sipped Ti betan tea from antique Chinese porcelain cups. He is a charming and intelligent young man, full of wisdom and love, with a lively interest in the outside world (below). We dis cussed subjects as varied as space exploration and comparative religion. The Rimpoche had built a resthouse for visitors below the monastery, and had just completed a school offering religious instruc tion to all who desire it. Though educated in Tibet, where he spent many years, he is con sidered to be a Sherpa, from Namche Bazar, and his people are proud of him. Many of the murals and images at the Thyangboche Monastery were created by the celebrated Khumbu artist Kalden. His son Pasang had been one of our porters during the 1960-61 expedition and was with us again in 1963 to help build the two new schoolhous es. The beauty of the work at Thyangboche prompted me to ask Pasang whether or not he also painted. "Yes," he replied, "my father taught me. He is still painting, but I had to stop because there is little money in it now." Pasang later took me to his father's house 567 THOMASJ. ABERCROMBIE(OPPOSITE, UPPER), LILA M. BISHOP (OPPOSITE, LOWER), AND DESMOND DOIG © N.G.S.