Friday, 30 May 2008

Monk Body arrives in Thimphu

May 30: His Holiness the Je Khenpo and the monks of the Zhung Dratshang arrived in Thimphu the summer residence yesterday.

Enroute to the Tashichhodzong, their summer residence, His Holiness the Je Khenpo and the Zhung Dratshang were received at the Lingkana Palace ground by His Majesty the King and granted traditional Shoelja-Desi.

The Monk Body spends the winter in Punakha. They leave for Thimphu on the first day of the fourth Bhutanese month maintaining a tradition that goes back to the early 17th century. The tradition of maintaining a summer and winter residence was instituted by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel in the 17th century.

This year, their arrival has been delayed because the fifth month is double in the Bhutanese calendar.

Following the audience, His Holiness the Je Khenpo and the Monk Body were escorted in traditional Chipdrel procession to the Tashichhodzong.

At the main entrance of the Tashichhodzong, they were received by the Prime Minister Lyonchen Jigme Y. Thinley, Cabinet Ministers and Members of the Parliament.

The Monk Body left the Puna Dewa Chenpoi Phodrang on Wednesday.

In keeping with the age old tradition, His Holiness the Je Khenpo and the monk body made a night-halt at Thinleygang on Wednesday.

This morning as they proceeded towards Thimphu, thousands of people waited in line along the road to offer prayers and receive blessings.

The line of people stretched from Hungtsho, Yusipang, Semtokha, and Lungtenphu to the dzong.

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