Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Unintended Debate on Celestial Beings

My reference to the Speaker’s address has nothing to do with the sects or communities. I leave that to the zealots. My observation was simply a natural instinct to a sense of change of wind. Only time will tell the significance. Had the address been made by a person without prior legislative experience, maybe the political nuances would have escaped notice. However, a former Secretary of National Assembly is worthy of attention when something out of normal context is said in his role as the Speaker. It is not for me to judge the right or wrong of it but when I sense a possible change in the wind, I do think aloud.

I am writing this 2nd article as a result of a spark created by the way Migma a commenter in Kuensel forum had structured his very informative comment. I just felt an elaboration is warranted.

I do not personally know Namkhai Ningpo and Jamyang Khentse but that is no surprise because I do not know many other religious personalities. However, they are Buddhist Trulkus deeply revered by Bhutanese including myself and other Buddhists. I have a photo of the father of Jamyang Khentse in my home altar. I found it in a book given to me by a pious person.

My reverence for Jamyang Khentse is not based on his linguistic ability to speak the birth languages of his yab and yum and the much commonly spoken English language nor his knowledge of the Old Testament the origin of Islam, Judaism and Christianity etc.

I respect him for his well thought out and very frank even bold views on every day happenings. He makes Buddhism easy to understand. I listen to his BBS interviews. Very Profound! I also want to take this opportunity to thank the Rinpochey for stating aloud for all to hear that, “Education is more than just securing a job.” At this juncture of time, it is necessary and beneficial for all Bhutanese parents and youths to appreciate such profound outlook on education.

I have seen the enormous establishment of Namkhai Ningpo at Bumthang. It is a huge investment of money, time and religious sentiment. Also one cannot fail to notice the large number of devotees and followers inside and outside Bhutan and elsewhere in the world. He is undoubtedly a Buddhist Teacher of the highest order.

I do not really believe that Guru Pema Juney visited Bhutan 3 times but I do revere the knowledge that the saintly Lam Pemala imparted to us at Ugyen Wangchuck Academy that Guru visited Bumthang and there are 8 manifestations and many holy places of Guru in Bhutan. I often recite the Kathadhup of Guru.

As a born Buddhist of the general kind, I simply hold in veneration all Lams, Rinpocheys and personalities of other religions for their piousness and knowledge and not for dollars or wealth that surround them. If dollar income generation is basis for veneration than all Bhutanese Travel Agents should be awarded saffron robes and revered.

I just lead a general Buddhist life not a professional occupation. To me Buddhism is a simple religion of Buddha and Guru but made complex by crowds of assorted others including many conflicting claims of reincarnations of the same personalities and the kind of hereditary type of Trulkus often a product of inbred offspring or blood line of a former great Buddhist Teacher. So I take a simple approach. I do not differentiate between home grown or outside grown, incarnate or self-attained. As a Buddhist I bow before a Buddhist Teacher and receive Blessings when occasion presents.

I hold His Holiness the JeKhenpo and Zung Dratsang at the pinnacle of my respects for the simple reason of tradition, faith and national sentiment. It is not just that the two are part of the adopted constitution. The two represent the historical roles played by the religious personalities and institutions in Bhutan. And I remain always grateful and appreciative of the contributions that molded Bhutan which provides my identity as that of all Bhutanese.

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