Recently, the Bumchu Festival was celebrated in the Tashiding Monastery, located in the state of Sikkim.
About Bumchu Festival:
- Bumchu Festival is the Tashiding holy water vase ritual which is a unique and important occasion that draws travellers from all over the world.
- Annual performances of this ancient ceremony are held at the Tashiding Monastery, located in the western part of Sikkim.
- The Bumchu festival commemorates a supernatural occurrence that took place in the 18th century under Chogyal Chakdor Namgyal.
- Bumchu means “pot of sacred water” in Tibetan. The vase is opened during the event, and the water inside is shared among the worshippers.
- The water is thought to have healing qualities and to grant luck and riches to those who drink it.
- The celebration takes place on the 14th and 15th of the first lunar month, which often falls in February or March.
- In Sikkim, the Bumchu festival is a time of intense delight and celebration. At the event, pilgrims travel to Tashiding from all around India as well as from close by nations like Bhutan, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Key facts about the Tashiding Monastery
- It is one of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites, located on a hilltop overlooking the Rangeet River in Sikkim.
- Guru Padmasambhava, better known as Guru Rinpoche, the great Buddhist guru who brought Buddhism to Tibet, blessed the location of the monastery.
- A Nyingma teacher named Ngadak Sempa Chempo Phunshok Rigzing later founded the monastery in the 17th century.
Q1) What is the Nyingma sect?
The Nyingma is a Tibetan Buddhism set which is the oldest amongst the four schools and the second largest after Gelugpa sect. Nyingma in Tibetan means “ancient” and has roots going back to the 8th century when the indigenous Bon religion was strongly adhered to by Tibetans. The Nyingma sect is also known as the Red Hat sect because its Lamas wear red robes and hats.