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Ladakh to play host

18 April 2011 by Tenzin Namgyel, Kuensel News, on 3rd Annual Drukpa Council (read news at Kuensel Online) - The next annual Drukpa council (ADC) will be held in a fascinating destination, surrounded by ancient monasteries, within snowcapped Himalayan peaks, and characterised by quaint frozen lanes.

Ladakh, or the land of passes, will play host to scores of Buddhists from across the world, for the third ADC, the world’s largest assembly of Drukpa Lineage masters, scholars and trulkus on August 23.

The first two gatherings were held in Nepalese capital of Kathmandu, where more than 10,000 participants, including Drukpa masters from Bhutan, Nepal, Ladakh, Tibet, south Asia, Europe and many from the western societies gathered to pay their respect to Buddha’s teachings.

The masters exchanged and discussed views on their understanding of the core values of Buddhist principles.

This time, one of India’s coldest regions, which is more than 3,000m above sea level, will be a melting pot for people of different race, colour and ethnicity, all bound by a common goal of spreading the 2,500-year old Buddha’s teachings.

The council was founded to share ideas and strengthen relationships within the Drukpa Lineage, and exchange the richness of its spiritual legacy among lineage holders.

The emphasis, advisor and the then council’s chairman, the 9th Khamtrul rinpoche, Jigme Pema Nyinjadh, was appreciative and respectful of individuals, irrespective of their diverse backgrounds and cultures.

“The past councils went beyond the Sangha (Buddhist community) members, in terms of creating awareness and interest, not only through spiritual activities, but also through various charitable and humanitarian activities,” said rinpoche.

Part of the program included the ‘Live to Love’ charity music concert on development of education and health, preservation of culture and environment in the Himalayas and victims of natural disasters.

On preparation of a road map to Ladakh, founders of ADC headed by Khamtrul Rinpoche, last weekend in Thimphu, discussed various points concerning teachings, logistics, travel and official participants from Bhutan and abroad.

Many Bhutanese volunteers, who number more than 20, felt it was a rare opportunity to go to a sacred place like Ladakh, which has its spiritual connection with Bhutan for the week-long program.

“I can’t afford to miss a lifetime opportunity like this,” a volunteer Singye Dorji said.

The spiritual connection between Bhutan and Ladakh that began since the time of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, volunteers felt, will further tighten the bond between them.

By Tenzin Namgyel