Archive for Bagan

The Firmest Friend

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2011 by stevemccurry

 The poor dog, in life the firmest friend,
The first to welcome, foremost to defend.
– Lord Byron


Johannesburg, South Africa


Dogs are our link to paradise.
They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent.
To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be
back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring.

It was peace.
– Milan Kundera






Kham, Eastern Tibet



Varanasi, India

The dog … is the god of frolic.
– Henry Ward Beecher


Angkor, Cambodia


New Delhi, India



Kabul, Afghanistan

With eye upraised his master’s look to scan,
The joy, the solace, and the aid of man:
The rich man’s guardian and the poor man’s friend,
The only creature faithful to the end.
– George Crabbe


Porbandar, India

The bond with a true dog is as lasting as the ties of this earth will ever be.
– Konrad Lorenz


Bagan, Burma


ITALY-10089, Rome, Italy, 10/1994,

Rome, Italy

I read the Odyssey because it was the story of a man who
returned home after being absent for more than twenty years
and was recognized only by his dog.

– Guillermo C. Infante

FRANCE-10028, France, 1989

Marseille, France






If I have any beliefs about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have
known will go to heaven, and very, very few persons.
– James Thurber


Texas, USA

Histories are more full of the examples
of the fidelity of dogs than of friends.
– Alexander Pope






Jaipur, India

All knowledge, the totality of all questions and answers,
is contained in the dog.
Franz Kafka, Investigations of the Dog


Near Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka



Rome, Italy


California, USA

The one absolutely unselfish friend that man can have in
this selfish world, the one that never deserts him,
the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog.
– George Graham



If you think you’re a person of some influence, try ordering somebody else’s dog around.
–  Cowboy Wisdom


Gruffy, our family dog, Newtown Square, Pennsylvania

We invite you to visit our new website:

The Path to Buddha

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2009 by stevemccurry

I am often asked about which countries I enjoy photographing the most.  That’s very hard to answer, but I do enjoy going back again and again to Buddhist countries, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Bhutan, Tibet, Sri Lanka, and Burma.


Buddha statue in Mandalay, Burma, 2008


Monk at the Jokhang Temple in Lhasa, Tibet, 2000

The ethics and the aesthetics of Buddhism are melded in a unique way. The vivid color of robes and sacred places contrast with the monochromatic tradition I grew up with.


Young monks play with computer games in Sera Monastery in Bylakuppe, India, 2001

Every time I have visited a Buddhist monastery, I have seen a playfulness among the monks, a joy in the way they conduct themselves and the way they interact with each other.

Young nun, Rangoon, BURMA-10013NF2, Burma/Myanmar, 1994

Young nun, Rangoon, Burma, 1994


Monks in the Rain, Angkor Wat, Cambodia, 1999


A monk studies Buddhist scripture in the late afternoon at a monastery in Aranyaprathet, Thailand, 1996

As I photographed the picture of the monk and the cat in a monastery in Thailand, it occured to me that all the qualities that I observed – contemplation, serenity, meditation – are ones that are antithetical to the hard-charging, ladder-climbing Western culture.


Young monks study Buddhist scripture at a monastery in Litang, Kham, Tibet, 1999


Pilgrim praying at the Buddhist academy of Larung Gar, near Serthar, Kham, Tibet, 2001

The Monks have a way of taking something we could consider mundane, and transform it into something sacred.


Candles are a form of offering at the Tibetan Prayer Festival, during which thousands are lit under the Bodi tree. Bodh Gaya, India, 2000

Monasteries have always been places of refuge for people and animals who have no other place to go.  Monks will share whatever they have, no matter how small.


Woman meditates in Bagan monastery, Burma, 2008

Even though they get merits for helping people in need, one never has the impression that they do it for any other reason other than their good nature, dedication, and hospitality.

Quotations from the Buddha:

“Teach this triple truth to all:  A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity.”

“Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life.”

“In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west; people create distinctions out of their own minds and then believe them to be true.”



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