Tashi Lhapug Monastery (Tashi Lhunpo Monastery)
Tashi Lhapug Monastery
Nestled on the banks of the Zachu River, a tributory of the Mekong River, is tiny Tashi Lhapug Monastery, home to 60 monks. Tashi Lhapug is literally at the end of a muddy dirt road that takes three days by horseback or five hours by jeep to travel from the city of Zadoh. There is no one for miles around, except for a few nomads in the summer.
Tashi Lhapug dates back to the time of the Fifth Dalai Lama, five centuries ago. It once had 700 monks. It was completely destroyed by the communists in 1958, but slowly the monks rebuilt parts of the monastery. Today, the monks range in age from 14 to 70 years. Several of monks are in long term meditation retreats in the huts and caves above the monastery.
Tashi Lhapug belongs to the Gelug sect of Tibetan buddhism. Led by head lamas Lhapug Gyal Rinpoche and Lochok Rinpoche, it has a reputation for producing accomplished lamas and tantric yogis. The scenic location, amid an abundance of wild herbs and natural mineral springs, is excellent for Buddhist training and contemplation.
Despite the idyllic setting, life at Tashi Lhapug is difficult. In winter the road from Zadoh is impassable for months. The monks lack sufficient food and living quarters. In 2001, an earthquake damaged the main temple and to date the monastery has not been able to afford repairs. The monks also lack basic buddhist artifacts necessary for their practices such as statuary, icons (thangkas), and buddhist texts.
The monastery constructed a hall of philosophical studies and debate. This is where the monks practice the highly structured debate system of the Gelug sect. Debate is a traditional way for the monks to test their understanding of buddhist philosophy and to help identify and dispel wrong views.
You can help the monks of Tashi Lhapug by contributing funds to help complete the construction of the hall, help pay for the repairs to the main temple, or help provide the basic necessities to the monks.
More Information on the Tashi Lhapug Monastery Project
Tashi Lhapug Monastery constructed a new hall of philosophic studies with assistance from Gaden Relief. The hall became a place of intense study and debate in Buddhist philosophy for the monks of Tashi Lhapug. Tashi Lhapug dates back to the time of the Fifth Dalai...