Spinning a Wheel of Prayer
“The important thing is not the finding, it is the seeking, it is the devotion with which one spins the wheel of prayer and scripture, discovering the truth little by little.
If this machine gave you the truth immediately, you would not recognize it,”
(Ursula K. LeGuin – American Writer, b.1929)
Those Tibetan monks were talking in front of a Buddhist temple in Leh, the capital of the Himalayan kingdom of Ladakh which is in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.
One was holding a prayer wheel.
Tibetan prayer wheels (called Mani wheels by the Tibetans) are devices for spreading spiritual blessings and well being.
Rolls of thin paper with copies of the mantra (prayer) Om Mani Padme Hum, printed in an ancient Indian script or in Tibetan script, are wound around an axle in a protective container, and spun around and around.
Tibetan Buddhists believe that saying this mantra, out loud or silently to oneself, invokes the powerful benevolent attention and blessings of Chenrezig, the embodiment of compassion.