Tuesday, 5 July 2022

Jela- Dho Chorten-Bemri Trek (25/6/2022)


 It was along time dream to experience this famous trek from Jela- dzong to Bemri via Dho-chorten. It is a beautiful trek indeed. We booked an ECCO Taxi which took us up till chubjakha, above Ta Dzong. From there through beautiful trees, shrubs and grasses it took us one and half hour to reach Jela- Dzong. The story behind Jela (Drela in other words) is connected to Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. It's said that Zhabdrung got the signs of victory against the Tibetan forces at here, met Yeshey Gonpo in person hence the name Je- meeting. The monastery was first built by Ngawang Chogyal; the main statues are the Buddha of past, present and future which was later built by the sixteenth Jekhenpo of Bhutan Sherab Gyeltshen.

From Jela- dzong it takes an hour to reach Dho-chorten. We can see a huge rock in chorten shape. It is said that Gelwang Je Kuenga Peljor, the 9th previous reincarnation of Zhabdrung visualised 8 type of chortens in this rocky chorten shaped structure. On the top hill above the present lhakhang is a foot print of gyelwang Je. It is said that once when Gyelwang Je was residing in Dho- chorten area, the valley down had a prosperous livelihood. Yet the people didn't like and decided to assassinate the lam. The lam knew this through his clairvoyant power. He instructed his assistant to go down the valley and get him a meat, whatever he gets on the way. The assistant encountered the meat of an eight year old girl and offered it to lam. A dog and cow happened to taste it as well in the process of preparing the meal. After having it, the lam (and the dog and cow) were able to fly while the assistant couldn't. When lam asked if he had taken the meat, which he said he hasn't. The assistant was therefore unable to fly and accompany lam. The lam instructed him to stay back and be the local diety of that area so that the local people offer everything he needs. As in the story, the local diety of present day Goenkha is that assistant who couldn't take the meat and couldn't fly. The lam flew to Tibet leaving his footprint which is still visible today on the stone. In the lhakhang the main statue is of Guru Rimpoche who is said to talk in future.

From Dho-chorten, it takes more than two hours to reach Bemri. Bemri is a sacred place and a beautiful place aesthetically; we can see both part of Thimphu and Paro. The lhakhang at Bemri is said to be built by Khandros (100000 Khandros). Unfortunately we were unable to go inside and seek blessings as it was locked. If only the caretakers of such lhakhang stay there as places such as this are not often reached by the general people due to the distance. Anyways the rocky mountain at Bemri is so full of 'Nyes'. Sometimes I just wonder as to how people in the olden times were able to leave behind prints in the rock? Scientifically is it possible? I don't know? But then it's all to do with believing. What we believe is what we become! The very core and essence of so called Buddhism.

By the time we finished visiting the places in and around Bemri, it was almost 6 pm. The time wastage was added in by us going to the wrong way. We had to literally run down the rugged terrain as it was becoming dark. It was almost 730pm when we reached Nephu Goenpa, the seat of successive Nephu Trulkus. The taxi was called to pick is up from there. He brought with him a bottle of juice each which greatly helped us relieve the thirst and pain from about 12 hours of journey. It was such satisfying trip all on all.

If you are interested to experience this wonderful and interesting trek, why delay? I think this time around is the best although monsoon has started. Ours was the best weather, no sun, no rain although the clear blue sky was often blocked by the running clouds.

Jela- Dho Chorten-Bemri Trek (25/6/2022)

 It was along time dream to experience this famous trek from Jela- dzong to Bemri via Dho-chorten. It is a beautiful trek indeed. We booked...