March 14, 2018
Published By Tenzin Phende

Traditional Tibetan sweet rice being offered at the beginning of every important work. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Before I went to sleep last night, I felt a strong desire to circumambulate the Tsuglagkhang, the early next morning. So when I woke up this morning, I began the day which is Lhakar by circumambulating the residence of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tsuglagkhang temple. Although I am more of a spiritual person than an ardent religious one, I have always believed that the practice of Buddhism as a philosophy has something unique to offer all of us. Moreover, I feel that circumambulating is not just a religion but an exercise in your body and spirit. So while I was circling the temple, I was wondering what to write today on Lhakar.

The inaugural session of the 5th session of 16th Parliament in progress. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Fortunately, today is the beginning of the 5th session of 16th Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile and it coincides with Lhakar. I was pretty excited that I would get some opportunity to capture our honourable parliamentarians in the best of Tibetan traditional attire.

Members of Tibetan Parliament going through the proceedings. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

As I walked into the parliament building, I got to witness the members of the parliament in the traditional attires of their respective provinces. There is always active discussion during the ten-day session in parliament. Even though this is budget session but the discussions always range from the current situation inside Tibet and problems facing Tibetans in exile.

A staff of Tibetan Parliamentary Secretariat serving Tibetan butter tea at the beginning of the parliament session. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

The session began with a serving of Tibetan butter tea (Bodja) and traditional Tibetan sweet rice (dresil). I have captured a few candid shots of the parliamentarians enjoying the traditional refreshments.

Tibetan butter tea served in Tibetan design cup. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Watching closely at the parliamentarians, every attire has its own unique way to present the rich culture of Tibet. Few of the costumes have a fusion of traditional and modern design which clearly shows that Tibetans, whether in Tibet or in exile, has a strong and deep desire to preserve the unique culture that has been passed on for more than several centuries.

One of the parliamentarians in traditional attire speaking during the beginning of the session. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Whatever the differences may be in the parliamentarians but we should feel proud that everyone agrees that when it comes to traditional attire, everyone wears Chupa regardless of male or female.

It has become one of the most important components in the unity of all Tibetan people.

Parliamentarian pray offering before having dresil. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Secretaries as an observer enjoying Tibetan butter tea and Dresil. Photo/Tenzin Phende/DIIR

Share with your friends