Tawang Monastery recently expressed its discontent over China renaming different places in Arunachal Pradesh.
About the ‘Tawang Monastery’ –
- It is located in the Tawang district in Arunachal Pradesh.
- It is situated on a mountain in the town of Tawang at an altitude of over 3000 m.
- It is the largest monastery in India and the second largest in the world after the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet.
- It is known in Tibetan as Galden Namgey Lhatse, which translates to “celestial paradise in a clear night.”
- It was founded by Merak Lama Lodre Gyatso in 1680-1681 in accordance with the wishes of the 5th Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lobsang Gyatso.
- It belongs to the Gelug school of Mahayana Buddhism.
- Structure —
- The monastery is three stories high and is enclosed by a 282 m-long compound wall.
- The 8 m high gilded statue of Lord Buddha dominates the sanctum.
- It has a residential building for the monks, a library, a museum and a school for basic education.
- The monastery has many ancient scriptures, including the Kangyur, a collection of the teachings of the Buddha, and the Tengyur, a collection of commentaries on the teachings of the Buddha.
Gelug school of Mahayana Buddhism –
- The Gelug or Gelug-pa, also known as the Yellow Hat sect, is the newest of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism.
- It was founded by Je Tsongkhapa (1357–1419), a Tibetan philosopher, tantric yogi and lama, and further expanded and developed by his disciples
- It emerged as the pre-eminent Buddhist school in Tibet since the end of the 16th century.
- The Dalai Lamas are often mostly associated with this school.
- The Ganden Tripa (“Ganden Throne Holder”) is the official head of the school, though its most influential figure is the Dalai Lama.
- Gelug school placed special emphasis on monastic training and study, as well as practice.