Sunset at Colombo is a symphony of nature.The coconut tree leaf delightfully draws the enchanting dance of the breeze. The ocean waves rise to speak the sprightly yearning of the restless water. The open sky decorates the wide space with the most wondrous colors that eyes can see. All bid au revoir silently to the setting sun in a most beautiful and enchanting way.
Mesmerized by the sheer indescribable beauty of it, I too joined the natural elements and said au revoir to the setting sun in my mind. I didnt move from my place nor did I take my eyes off the sun. I stood riveted till the sun disappeared fully and till the horizon too, following suit, disappeared slowly and reluctantly.
The next day, still reveling in the memories of this soul stirring welcome experience at Colombo, I travelled to Kelaniya, about an hour drive away. This is the place where, commanded by Rama, Lakshmana coronated Vibhishana as the emperor of Lanka about a million years ago.
A clean temple with a subdued attractive charm has been built at this location commemorating this event.
A captivating recessed sculpture in the temple wall depicting the coronation welcomed me as I entered the temple from the parking lot.
The temple had other interesting sculptures including a Vinayakar seated on an over sized mouse.
Then I got to see the coronation mural at close quarters.
The temple has been built on the banks of river Kelani (Kalyani in Valmiki Ramayana?). Vibhishana’s palace was on the banks of this river. Hence the coronation took place here.
The Kelani river
Entrance to the temple from the river side.
The light brown building immediately behind the white arches is the temple built to commemorate Vibhishana’s coronation. The reddish tiled roof and the white dome are part of a Buddhist temple at this location.
I was told that Buddhist scriptures record the fact that Gautama Buddha himself visited this place, eight years after his enlightenment. The Buddhist temple was built after that. This temple is known as Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara. It houses a collection of scintillating paintings depicting the history of Sri Lanka. This temple is an important pilgrimage place for Buddhists from around the world.
Near the entrance to the Buddhist temple
An elephant at the temple, near the Kelani river. An inexhaustible sight!
Kelaniya was our last stop in Sri Lanka. As we returned to Colombo to head out the next morning, I couldn’t help think how fortunate I was to visit and spend a few days in this God’s country. The lush and rich greeneries, clean surroundings, welcoming and kind hospitality, friendly and contented people – all make Sri Lanka a truly special place on earth.
I know I’ll return here. Till then “au revoir“.
Please read the following blogs also. Thank you for visiting and for allowing me to share these experiences with you.
December 31 2016. Ramayana in Lanka
January 2 2017. Ramayana in Lanka: Hanuman lands in Lanka
January 4 2017. Ramayana in Lanka: The place where Hanuman met Sita
January 7 2017. Ramayana in Lanka. The Fire Test. Agni Pareekshai.
January 8 2017. Ramayana in Lanka. When Indrajit became almost invincible
January 15 2017. Ramayana in Lanka. Hanuman takes a leap from Lanka