The Tibetan prayer wheel experience

I’ve been visiting this Tibetan cafe in Chengdu, not ony because I love their momo’s ( Tibetan dumplings), but also because the owners have always been so warm and friendly, and I’ve taken a particular liking to the owners mother who sits in the cafe all day, everyday.

I love old people – They can sleep anywhere, and they’ll talk to anyone, even if you don’t understand them.

So when it was translated to the old lady (I’ll call her Grandma) that I haven’t been able to sleep for the past three nights, she immediately gives me some prayer beads, and a tiny portable prayer wheel, and said something I imagine was ‘ That’ll sort you out.’

This morning, after my first night of rest since arriving in Chengdu, I excitedly went to visit Grandma to tell her the good news, bringing with me the tiny prayer wheel to help demonstrate my story. However, while I was motioning how I used the prayer wheel and that I was able to get to sleep, she got really agitated and started saying a whole lot of stuff to me, hands flying about excitedly while she seem to communicate something of real importance.

Her daughter came over to help translate the message which was ‘You must not (demonstrates). Devil. You must like this (demonstrates the difference), good.’

In essence, you have to swing the prayer wheel around clockwise for your prayers to be heard by God. If you swing the prayer wheel anti-clockwise, which seemed natural to me, you’re praying to the devil (yikes!)

So the prayers and scriptures that rest inside my tiny prayer wheel were said backwards to the devil resulting in a great nights sleep.

Mark – Let me know if our bad tenant has started paying rent?

Kidding! From now on I’m going to pray clockwise 🙂

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