Open Collections

Digital Himalaya Journals

Historical Roots, Spiritual Significance and the Health Benefits of mKhempa-lJong gNyes Tshachu (hot… Wangchuk, Phurpa; Dorji, Yeshi between 2007-06 and 2007-08

Item Metadata

Download

Media
dhimjournal-1.0365149.pdf
Metadata
JSON: dhimjournal-1.0365149.json
JSON-LD: dhimjournal-1.0365149-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): dhimjournal-1.0365149-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: dhimjournal-1.0365149-rdf.json
Turtle: dhimjournal-1.0365149-turtle.txt
N-Triples: dhimjournal-1.0365149-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: dhimjournal-1.0365149-source.json
Full Text
dhimjournal-1.0365149-fulltext.txt
Citation
dhimjournal-1.0365149.ris

Full Text

 Historical Roots, Spiritual Significance and the Health
Benefits of mKhempa-lJong gNyes Tshachu (hot spring) in
Lhuntshe*
Phurpa Wangchuk** and Yeshi Dorji*
Abstract
Bhutan is a country blessed with many rich natural medicinal
resources such as minerals, animals, plants, sman-chu (medicinal
waters) and tshachu (hot springs). While minerals, animal parts
and medicinal plants are used by the Institute of Traditional
Medicine Services (ITMS) for compounding herbal medicines to
provide health care services in Bhutan, tshachu are popularly
used by the public as an alternative curative therapy for treating
various diseases. Given such inherent health benefits that the
tshachu reportedly have, the ITMS has carried out research on
seven popular tshachu in Bhutan with a view to document,
identify, validate and classify them according to the therapeutic
properties described in the gSo-ba Rig-pa texts. Amongst all the
seven tshachu studied, Kurtoe mKhem-pa Uong gNyes tshachu (in
Lhuntshe-located in the north-east of Bhutan) was found to have
profound religious, spiritual and historical significance, supported
in many texts going back as far as the 8th century. It was reported
that this tshachu was blessed by Guru Rimpoche and for the
* We are grateful to Ani Lhanwang Choizom of Kabisa for letting us
use one of the rare books "sbas-yul-mkhen-pa-ljongs-gi-gnyes-yig-
nima'i-'od-zef from the collection of her late husband Lama Yeshi
Choezin. We acknowledge Mr.Ugyen Jurmey Tenzin, the Painter of
the 5th Druk Gyalpo, for providing us with the gTer-bdag Thanka as
well as the book "mKhen-lung-gTer-bdag-gsol-mchod". We also
acknowledge the staffs of the National Library of Bhutan for letting
us use the library for our literature reviews and Mr. Michael Adair
(EU Project Team Leader) for proof reading this article. Lastly, we
appreciate the Research Team of gNyes tshachu and also the
authorities of ITMS for their research initiatives.
Senior Research Officer, Pharmaceutical and Research Unit (PRU),
Institute of Traditional Medicine Services,  Department of Medical
Services, Ministry of Health, Thimphu.
*** Drungtsho-Adiviser to PRU.
112
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
benefit of all sentient beings his manifestation Terton Pema Lingpa
revealed it in the year 1475. Mainly for these reasons, it is
considered the most sacred tshachu in Bhutan and people believe
that it also cleanses one's defilements and sins. The literature
reports the presence of nine related pools in the mKhem-pa Uong
gNyes areas. However, only three pools in close proximity, called
Guru tshachu, Tshe-dpag-med-tshachu and mKha'-'gro'i tshachu
exist today. The users of this tshachu are mainly the people of
Kurtoe, Kurman, Mongar, Tashigang, Tashi Yangtse and
Bumthang. It is estimated that every year about twenty groups of
at least 10 people each, visit this sacred tshachu. The study
carried out by ITMS in 23rd January 2001 identified and
established the main medicinal substances as well as the
therapeutic properties of these three pools. The identification was
based on their organoleptic properties.
Introduction
Bhutan is a country visited and blessed by a great Buddhist
saint Guru Padma Sambhava (Guru Rimpoche) in the 8th
century (Year 746 A.D)1. With the visit of Guru Rimpoche and
the advent of Mahayana Buddhism, gSo-ba Rig-pa, the art of
healing sciences based on the Buddhist tradition, took root in
Bhutan2. At that time, Khandro Yeshi Tshogyal, a consort and
a disciple of Guru Rimpoche meditated on rdu-rtsi sman-gi
bchued-lan brgya-tsa brgyad at Mon-kha Nye-ring, Singye
Dzong3. From one of the oral historical accounts, it is told
that her meditation practice resulted in the emission of an
unusual medicinal aroma in her meditation cave that diffused
to nearby places tike Khoma, Pangkhar, Gangla, Khoema and
Lugchu under Lhuntshe Dzongkhag. The people of those
localities pledged their respect and faith to Khandro Yeshi
1 Slob dpon Padma Tshedwang (1994). History of Bhutan, Thimphu:
National Library, p.26.
2 Wangchuk, P., Wangchuk, D. and Aagaard-Hansen, Jens (2007).
"Traditional Bhutanese Medicine (gSo-ba Rig-pa): An Integrated Part
of The Formal Health Care Services," Southeast Asian J.Trop.Med
Public Health, 2007, 38 (1), pp. 161-167.
3 Nyoshul Khenpo Jamyang Dorji Rinpoche. Zokchen Chos-jung,
Volume 1, New Delhi: Indraprastha Press (CBT), p. 181.
113
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Tshogyal and thereafter several rich elites became her
patrons. Today, at her meditation cave stands a mortar and
pestle that processed the medicinal materials to make a
secret magical concoction. According to the oral transmission
of Guru Rimpoche on gter-rlung (treasures), this secret
magical medicinal concoction was then preserved as a gTer
(treasure) at Mon Chumo Phug at Paro. The same treasure
was later revealed by Guru Tsheten Gyeltshen, thus helping
to spread and propagate gSo-ba Rig-pa in Bhutan4. The
Bhutanese then learned to utilize available medicinal
resources such as plants, minerals, animal parts, tshachu
(hot springs) and smanchu (medicinal water) which were
found abundantly in the country. For this reason, Bhutan
also came to be known as sMan-ljong: The Land of Medicine5.
Tshachu are very popular in Bhutan. Unlike in other
countries, where tshachu are more commonly used for
recreation and relaxation, in Bhutan they are mainly used as
a therapy for treating diseases. Every year, people from aU
walks of life: old and young, men and women, and rich and
poor flock at the tshachu sites. Mindful of the health benefits
that tshachu deliver to the Bhutanese people, the Institute of
Traditional Medicine Services (ITMS) under the Ministry of
Health carried out a series of research efforts on these
popular tshachu. The main objectives of such research were
to document, identify, validate and classify the tshachu
according to the therapeutic properties described in the gSo-
ba Rig-pa texts and ultimately to support their inclusion as
an alternative medicinal therapy for the treatment of disease.
Definition and distinguishing features of tshachu
Tshachu literally means "hot water"  and could include the
4 Stag-sgang mkhas-mchog nGya-dBang-bLo-gRos (1981). Chos-
'byung ngo-mtshar gtam-gi rol-mtsho, Volume II, Paro: Ugyen Tempai
Gyaltshen Publication, p. 369.
5 Dorji, Yeshi (2005). "Sman-ljong zer-wai khungs," in Proceedings of
the 5th Colloquium on Tangible and Intangible Culture of Bhutan, Paro:
National Museum of Bhutan, pp.55-64.
114
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
man-made boiled water that is created in artificial conditions.
However, as defined in the gSo-ba Rig-pa tradition, tshachu in
this context means only that water originating from a "natural
source and emanating from natural phenomena which have
associated hot properties"6. Given its origin, the water
contains a combination of coal (rdo-sol), sulphur (mu-zi) and
limestone (rdo-sho). Because ofthe presence of these minerals
most of the tshachu have medicinal value. Spiritually, it is
believed that tshachu owe their origin to the good wishes and
blessings of Buddhas and Boddhisattavas. Hence, almost aU
tshachu are also held to be gNyes (sacred sites).
Materia medica of tshachu
According to our tradition, the origin of all natural resources
is credited as a creation of the gods. It is believed that when
the world was created, the sun and the moon were taken from
the heavenly Bumpa, a container where the primordial
substance was churned by the gods. The last churning of this
primordial substance produced a holy fluid caUed dhue-tsi
that cured every iUness. The invention of dhue-tsi ensured
immortality of the gods and preserved it for themselves. A
demon, who knew this secret, disguised itself as a god and
tried to drink the fluid. Unfortunately, other gods recognized
it and beheaded it with a sword. The chalice containing the
fluid fell down and was spilled. Wherever a drop of this
heavenly dhue-tsi fell, plants, animals, minerals, tshachu,
sman-chus and spring waters with medicinal properties grew
abundantly7. Fortunately, Bhutan could have been one of the
prime spots where this heavenly dhue-tsi fell, since it is
blessed with a plentiful supply of all of these. So far, about
ten tshachu have been formaUy reported in Bhutan (Table no.
1) but the number may be more than this.
6 Thogye Rinchen Gyonpo (1977). Rtsa-rgyud-'grel-pa-nga-dbang-rig-
gnas-rgya-mtsho, Volume 78, sMan-tsis-shes-rig-spen-dzod, Leh,
Ladakh, p.51.
7 Dorji, Pema and Morrisco, Paula (1989). An Introduction to
Traditional Medicine in Bhutan, Thimphu: National Institute of
Traditional Medicine, Ministry of Health and Education.
115
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Table No. 1. Ten tshachu reported
in Bhutan
Sl.No
Name of the Tshachu
Dzongkhag
Remark
1
gNyes Tshachu
Lhuntshe
Study done
2
Yonten Kuenjong Tshachu
Lhuntshe
Not done
3
Dur Tshachu
Bumthang
Study done
4
Gaylegphug Tshachu
Sarpang
Study done
5
Dunmang Tshachu
Zhemgang
Study done
6
Koma Tshachu
Punakha
Study done
7
Chu Boog Tshachu
Punakha
Study done
8
Gasa Tshachu
Gasa
Study done
9
Laya Tshachu
Gasa
Not done
10
Wachi Tshachu
Gasa
Not done
Out of ten tshachu formaUy known in Bhutan, about seven
were covered in this study. Amongst all those studied, Kurtoe
mKhem-pa Uong gNyes tshachu was found to be the most
sacred. This paper records the investigation of the rational
behind the sacredness of Kurtoe mKhem-pa Uong gNyes
tshachu basing on its religious significance, the historical
panorama, our research findings and the reported health
benefits.
Kurtoe gNyes tshachu and its historical roots
History and Origin
Amongst all the 20 dzongkhags of Bhutan and also amongst
the dzongkhags of Shar-phyog-'khor-lo-rtsibs-brgyad,
Lhuentse Dzongkhag distinguishes itseff as a landmark of
religious and geo-political significance. It is the place visited
and blessed by Guru Rimpoche and Terton Pema Lingpa. It is
also the place where the great leader Jigme Namgyal was
born to rule and take the country forward towards achieving
independence. Even today, Dungkar village under Kurtoe
Gewog, which is the motherland of the present ruling
Wangchuck Dynasty, is the quintessence of Bhutan's proud
116
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
history. Two days travel west of Dungkhar viUage ties an
important sacred site called sBaes-yul mKhen-pa-ljong gNyes
(sacred site) (Sketch Map 1).
Sketch Map 1.  Location and Trails to Kurtoe gNye Tshachu.
Places
Nyes Tshachu
The guardian deity of this gNyes is gTer-bdag Zo-ra-ra-skyes.
To the south of this gNyes is found the gNyes tshachu (see
Photo no. 1). The identification and recognition, as weU as the
documentation of its history have been reported in as many
as three sacred texts. One text gnyes-chen-mkhen-pa-lung-gi-
gnyes-yig-mkha'-'gro-ye-shis-mtsho-rgyal-gi-shus-lan points
out that the revealer of sBas-yul mKhen-pa-ljong gNyes, its
hidden treasures and tshachu was prophesized by Khandro
Yeshi Tshogyal to be Terton Pema Lingpa. This prophecy is
clearly indicated in one stanza of the prose-poem recorded in
the above text. The prophecy is written thus:
117
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Pad- ma' - ming- can- lho- nes-' hong
Spyod- pa- thog- joms-snya-tshogs-byad
Skyes-bu-las-can-di-nid-kyis
Lho-yi- phyogs- nes- sgo-' byid- 'gyur8.
Photo No. 1: View of Kurtoe gNyes tshachu
In the year 1475, as predicted and prophesized by Khandro
Yeshi Tshogyal, the sBas-yul gNyes, its hidden treasures and
tshachu were later revealed by Terton Pema Lingpa9. Then, in
his oral transmission text gter-ston-pad-ma-gling-pa'-bka'-
'bum-zhel-gdams, Terton Pema Lingpa intoned that in sBas-
yul-mkhen-pa-lung there is a sacred religious site blessed by
Ugyen Pema Jungnye and gifted with tshachu that have the
8 gnyes-chen-mkhen-pa-lung-gi-gnyes-yig-mkha'-'gro-ye-shis-mtsho-
rgyal-gi-shus-lan (An Oral Transmission of Guru Rimpoche to mkha'-
'gro-ye-shis-mtsho-rgyal in the 8th century), p. 10.
9 Slob dpon Padma Tshedwang (1994). History of Bhutan, Thimphu:
National Library, p.26.
118
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
medicinal property of curing diseases. This oral transmission
reads as follow:
Snyigs- ma' i-gnyes- chen- rnams- su- byin-gyis- brlabs
Khol- du- phyung- ba- sbas-yul- mkhen- pa- lung
Pad- mas- byin- brlabs-gnyes- chen- khyd- par-' phags
Chab- tshen- sman- chu-zhi- byed- nad- sel-yong
Dbul-phongs-nad-sel-ljong-shing-'bres-bu-mang10.
In another text sbas-yul-mkhen-pa-ljongs-gi-gnyes-yig-nima'i-
'od-zer it is reported as:
Bkra- shis- sgang-gi-' og- phyogs- na
Chu-tshen-spun-dgu-'dus-pa-yod.11
This means that in the place called Tashigang there are nine
related hot springs. Tashigang falls under mkKen-pa-ljong
and it has an individual history. It is chronicled that it was a
land once inhabited by King Khye-Kha-Ra-Thos when he was
extied by King Khri-srong ldue-bsan of Tibet in 775-797
AD.12
Categories of Kurtoe gNyes tshachu and their therapeutics
Although the literature on gNyes tshachu13 which is also
popularly referred as mKhen-pa-lung tshachu reported the
presence of nine related pools, currently people use only three
pools (see Photo no. 2). They are Guru tshachu (Pool 1), Tshe-
dpag-med-tshachu (Pool 2) and mKha'-'gro'i tshachu (Pool 3).
10 pad-ma-gling-pa'-zhel-gdams (1975). The Recovered Teachings of
the Great Pema Lingpa, Volume 13 (Pa), Sonam Tobgyal Publications
(reprinted under the patronage of Late Queen Mother Ashi Phuntsho
Choden), pp.256-257.
11 sbas-yul-mkhen-pa-ljongs-gi-gnyes-yig-nima'i-'od-zer (An Oral
Transmission of Guru Rimpoche to Lha-lcam Padma-gsel in the 8th
century), p.6.
12 Ibid.
is Ibid.
119
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Photo No. 2: Three
Nyes tshachu
>ML>V TO*. KL
Amongst aU the pools, Guru tshachu is the biggest and is
found just near the foot of the cliff. There is an oral account
that whUe Guru Rimpoche was taking a bath in that pool, a
demon miraculously channeled cold water towards Guru
tshachu pool. However, in order to prevent the cold water
getting into it, Guru Rimpoche diverted it using his magical
pen. The resulting channel carved in the stone is sttil seen
today in the vicinity of Guru tshachu. Just below and to the
right of the Guru tshachu lies the Tshe-dpag-med-tshachu
and mKha'-'gro'i tsahchu respectively. The pool of mKha'-'gro'i
tsahchu is amazingly located within a beautiful bowl of stone.
Although, these pools had been identified long ago and have
thus been used for centuries, the specific therapeutic
properties for each were not formaUy established until the
research team from the ITMS studied this tshachu in 23rd
January, 2001. The formal validation and identification of
their therapeutic uses was accomplished by analyzing the
specific organoleptic properties of smell, physical appearance
120
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
and colour of the tshachu at its source and the stones around
it, and also recording the temperature, altitude and proximity
ofthe locations of each pool (see table no. 2).
Table No. 2: Different pools o
therapeutic properties
f Kurtoe gNyes tshachu and their
Pool
name
Altitude
(Meters
above
sea
level)
Temperature
(degrees
Celsius)
Medicinal
substance
present
Therapeutic
properties
Guru
tsha-chu
2,925
40.2
Sodium
carbonate
(chong-zht)
and sulphur
(mu-zi)
Helpful in treating
indigestion, phlegm
disorders, Ihrn-skren,
Ichag-dreg and various
grang-wa disorders that
include urinary tract
infection and other
sexually transmitted
diseases. It also cures
skin diseases including
scabies and heals bone
fracture and chronic
wounds.
Tshe-
dpag-
med
tshachu
2,920
40
Limestone
(rdo-sho),
sulphur
and coal
(rdo-sol)
Helpful in treating bad-
smug, indigestion, Ihren-
skren, chu-ser, sha-pags,
bone and tendon
disorders and atrophy. It
also cures skin diseases
including scabies and
heals bone fractures and
chronic wounds.
mKha'-
'gro'i
tsahchu
2,925
40.3
Limestone
and sulphur
Helpful in treating chu-
ser-dreg-nad, gout,
rheumatoid arthritis,
polio and paralysis. It
cures skin diseases
including scabies and
heals bone fractures and
chronic wounds.
121
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Users of Kurtoe gNyes Tshachu and its Public Health Impact
In one text describing the gNyes14, it is reported as "Lho-
gNyes-'gro-na-dgun-'gro" and, as indicated, the best time for
visiting gNyes tshachu is from November until the end of
March. After March, the road to gNyes tshachu is difficult to
traverse.
So far, the users of Kurtoe gNyes tshachu have been mainly
the people of Kurtoe, Kurman, Mongar, Tashigang, Tashi
Yangtse and Bumthang. From local oral accounts it is
estimated that every year about twenty groups of at least 10
people each, visit this sacred gNyes tshachu. Despite its
sanctity and legendary historical significance, the number
visiting this tshachu is small compared to Gasa tshachu.
This is attributed to the fact that the journey is long and
difficult especiaUy for old and sick people. Also the road is
very narrow and there is no proper lodge in the tshachu area.
There are two ways to go to gNyes tshachu (see Sketch Map 1
above). One way is through gNyes Pema Choling via Yangri
Gang river crossing. The other way is through Kurtoe
Dungkhar via Jasibi and Chumig Gang river crossing. The
latter trail also requires two days to reach the tshachu.
While taking a bath in the tshachu, there are several
important polite conventions as weU as rituals that people
believe should be performed - even if one is a non-believer in
the supernatural being commonly believed to be a protector of
this area. Many of these traditional practices described for the
visitors to Kurtoe gNyes tshachu may apply to aU the tshachu
and their users. First and foremost, on arrival, people pay
homage to the Guardian Deity of the tshachu by offering a
specific prayer. The Guardian Deity of the gNyes tshachu is
called gNod-sbyin-rgod-ma-kha and his homage prayer is as
follows:
gNod-sbyin-chen-po-rgod-ma-kha
Ngyur- smrig-gos-gyon- rkang-gling-' bud
14 Ibid.
122
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
Kha- char- bu-yubs- thog- ser-gtong
Yul-bdag-chen-po-khyod-la-bstodi5.
gNod-sbyin-rgod-ma-kha is depicted as a "monk" wearing the
yellow pan-zha (scholar) hat, riding a yeti and blowing a
yrumpet fashioned from a rkang-gling (human femur) (see
Photo no. 3).
Photo No. 3: Painting of gNod-sbyin-rgod-ma-kha, the Guardian
tshachu
It is believed that he orders fierce and wrathful punishments
comprising sudden snow falls and downpours of rain
accompanied by abnormally large hailstones, dreadful
lightning and thunderbolts aimed at those who have breached
15 Trulku Chogden Goenpo. mKhen-lung-gTer-bdag-gsol-mchod, p.5.
(Note. Trulku Chogden Goenpo is the disciple of Terton Pema
Lingpa).
123
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
their pledges and to those violating acceptable practices in his
domain. His appeasement offerings comprise 'brang-rgyas
symbolic ritual cake, black chicken, hoisting new scarves
with five colors (white, yeUow, red, green, blue), libations (of
alcohol), burning of offerings (excluding meat) for the dead
(dkar-bsur) and recitation of his invocation prayer. This
appeasement offering to him, may not serve its purpose if
strict cleanliness, in and around the tshachu, is not
maintained. While visiting the Kurtoe gNyes tshachu, people
believe that the Guardian Deity gNod-sbyin-rgod-ma-kha
disapproves of the following:
1. The   presence   of  clothes   of the   dead   or   of those
attending the delivery of babies.
2. Shouting or whistling loudly.
3. Throwing meat or blood in the source of tshachu and
its surrounding areas.
4. Burning meat or animal skin.
5. Defecating or urinating in the tshachu pools.
6. Having sexual intercourse inside the tshachu pools.
7. Bathing in pairs especially couples, and
8. Women and girls bathing when menstruating.
Failing to adhere to any one of the above restrictions, means
subjecting oneself to his afore mentioned wrathful
punishments. These practices and beliefs are a Bhutanese
way of living, a way of being in the world that recognizes our
innate wholeness, holiness, connectedness and the right
relationship with ourselves, our family, our communities,
with nature and the environment, and with the supernatural
beings. Therefore, we need to reflect that our actions affect
every part of each ecosystem where the supernatural beings
and the elements of the physical cosmos co-habit. It is thus
important that credence be given to the existence of the
Guardian Deity-gNod-sbyrn-rgod-ma-kha as well as to offer
him due respect.
To derive the best health benefits from gNyes tshachu,
besides appeasing the wrathful Guardian Deity,  it is also
124
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
advisable that the foUowing things are given due attention.
1. Before availing the tshachu treatment, it is always
better to consult an astrologer or a traditional
physician to determine the auspiciousness of the
planned visit, diagnose any complaints, and to obtain
any specific instructions.
2. Tshachu bathing is not advisable for pregnant women,
infants, those suffering from blood pressure
abnormalities, cough and cold, jaundice, headache
and giddiness, heart disease, conjunctivitis, trachoma
and leprosy.
3. While bathing in the tshachu, it is always better to
pray either to Guru Rimpoche or to Sangay Menlha,
the Medicine Buddha, reciting their sacred mantras
and awakening to their blessings.
4. Long exposure should be avoided especially by old
people since it can induce headache and vomiting.
Therefore, the optimum duration of bathing is one
hour.
5. Bathing right after a meal is not advisable. There
should be at least a 30 minutes gap.
6. Right after the bath, one cannot stay in the cold wind
and should stay covered with a blanket.
When treatment days are over and it is time to return home,
it is also customary that certain rules are foUowed. In the
early hours of the day and before the long arduous return
journey begins, it is important to burn incense and offerings
(but excluding meat) for the dead (dkar-bsur) and also offer
libation. Then, at the source of the tshachu one should offer
precious jewels or paper money or coins and must wish for
the blessings of good health. If there are no precious jewels
or money or coins to be offered, at least few grains of rice
should be offered. In the past, people used to offer even very
highly prized and precious jewels tike turquoise, coral and
silver as a token of respect, but today Bhutanese offer only
coins or rice.
125
 Journal of Bhutan Studies
Conclusions and future directions
Amongst aU the seven tshachu studied, Kurtoe mKhem-pa
Uong gNyes tshachu was found to have profound religious,
spiritual and historical significance supported by many
written texts. This does not mean that other tshachu are not
significant. In fact, Gasa tshachu is very popular in Bhutan
and has been providing a health care service, directly or
indirectly, to both the Bhutanese and tourists for decades.
Our findings only confirm that Kurtoe mKhem-pa Uong gNyes
tshachu was blessed by Guru Rimpoche in the 8th century
and revealed to the people of Bhutan by Terton Pema Lingpa
in the year 1475. For these reasons, it is considered the most
sacred tshachu in Bhutan and people believe that it also
cleanses one's defilements and sins. To preserve the sanctity
and also to validate the therapeutic properties of gNyes
tshachu, the research team from ITMS identified the
therapeutic properties of each pool: Guru tshachu, Tshe-
dpag-med-tshachu and mKha'-'gro'i tshachu. The team has
also erected sign boards mentioning the pool names and their
individual uses.
Since the tshachu have been used by the Bhutanese for
centuries for generating spiritual and health benefits, it
provides an important tangible cultural feature of our
country. Therefore, in order to particularly promote the
Kurtoe gNyes tshachu, it is important that the trails to it are
improved and the basic lodging facilities are provided either
through government initiative and support, or through the
contributions and donations of well-wishers.
References
Dorji, Pema and Morrisco, Paula (1989). An Introduction to
Traditional Medicine in Bhutan, Thimphu: National Institute of
Traditional Medicine, Ministry of Health and Education.
Dorji, Yeshi (2005). "Sman-ljong zer-wai khungs," in
Proceedings of the 5th Colloquium on Tangible and Intangible
126
 mKhempa-Uong gNyes Tshachu in Lhuntshe
Culture of Bhutan, Paro: National Museum of Bhutan.
gnyes-chen-mkhen-pa-lung-gi-gnyes-yig-mkha'- 'gro-ye-shis-
mtsho-rgyal-gi-shus-lan    (An    Oral   Transmission    of   Guru
Rimpoche    to    mkha'-'gro-ye-shis-mtsho-rgyal    in    the    8th
century).
Nyoshul Khenpo Jamyang Dorji Rinpoche. Zokchen Chos-
jung, Volume 1, New Delhi: Indraprastha Press (CBT).
pad-ma-gting-pa'-zhel-gdams (1995). The Recovered Teachings
of the Great Pema Lingpa, Volume 13 (Pa), Sonam Tobgyal
Publications (reprinted under the patronage of Late Queen
Mother Ashi Phuntsho Choden).
sbas-yul-mkhen-pa-ljongs-gi-gnyes-yig-nima'i-'od-zer (An Oral
Transmission of Guru Rimpoche to Lha-lcam Padma-gsel in
the 8th century).
Slob dpon Padma Tshedwang (1994). History of Bhutan,
Thimphu: National Library.
Stag-sgang mkhas-mchog nGya-dBang-bLo-gRos (1981).
Chos-'byung ngo-mtshar gtam-gi rol-mtsho, Volume II, Paro:
Ugyen Tempai Gyaltshen Publication.
Thogye Rinchen Gyonpo (1977). Rtsa-rgyud-'grel-pa-nga-
dbang-rig-gnas-rgya-mtsho, Volume 78, sMan-tsis-shes-rig-
spen-dzod, Leh, Ladakh.
Trulku Chogden Goenpo. mKhen-lung-gTer-bdag-gsol-mchod.
Wangchuk, P., Wangchuk, D. and Aagaard-Hansen, Jens.
(2007). 'Traditional Bhutanese Medicine (gSo-ba Rig-pa): An
Integrated Part of The Formal Health Care Services,"
Southeast  Asian  J.Trop.Med   Public  Health,   2007,   38   (1).
127
 128

Cite

Citation Scheme:

        

Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics

Share

Embed

Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                        
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            src="{[{embed.src}]}"
                            data-item="{[{embed.item}]}"
                            data-collection="{[{embed.collection}]}"
                            data-metadata="{[{embed.showMetadata}]}"
                            data-width="{[{embed.width}]}"
                            data-media="{[{embed.selectedMedia}]}"
                            async >
                            </script>
                            </div>
                        
                    
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:
https://iiif.library.ubc.ca/presentation/cdm.dhimjournal.1-0365149/manifest

Comment

Related Items