Saturday, May 19, 2007

Nicholas Roerich's Sikkim

(1933) Nicholas Roerich - «Mount of Five Treasures» (Two Worlds).From «Holy Mountains» series

Over 70 years ago Prof. Roerich wrote about Sikkim: "This blessed country, full of reminiscences of the illumined leaders of religions, leaves an impression of great calmness. Here lived Padma Sambhava, the founder of the Red Cap sect. Atisha, who proclaimed the teaching of Kalachakra, crossed this country on his way to Tibet. Here, in the caves, dwelt many ascetics, filling space with their powerful thoughts. It is a whole snowy realm, altering its outlines with every variation of light! Verily it is inexhaustible in impressions and unceasingly evocative. Nowhere else on earth are expressed two such entirely different worlds. Here is the earthly world, with its rich vegetation, brilliant butterflies, pheasants, leopards, panthers, monkeys, snakes, and the innumerable other animals that inhabit the ever-green jungles of Sikkim. And above the clouds, in unexpected heights, shines the snowy kingdom, which has nothing in common with the busy ant-hill of the jungles." And his words are as relevant as ever beckoning and summoning the people in a quest to quench the thirst of adventure, knowledge, wisdom, beauty, tranquillity and spirituality.

Sikkim - one of the most beautiful states of India is yet to be discovered by tourists from my country and has a great many to offer to the inquisitive Russian soul, as well as there is every potential to turn this land into an alluring world tourist destination. The gorgeous Himalayas with magnificent Kanchenjunga, the water falls, rivulets, lakes, unique fauna and varied flora with the abundance of orchids and rhododendrons, ancient Buddhist monasteries - they all make this Himalayan state "the land of the hidden Paradise". It is with the efforts of the Sikkim government that the region has gradually become open for foreign tourists. I am confident that all endeavours by our Indian friends to project the state as the best eco-tourism destination, improve and develop tourism infrastructure in the state and include Sikkim in the tourism map of the world will be spectacularly successful.

Nicholas Roerich - «Kanchenjunga»