Nation celebrates the birth of The Gyalsey

Most Bhutanese woke up to a pleasant Saturday morning last week as an official announcement early in the morning broke the much anticipated news of the successful birth of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey on the night of 5th February 2016 .

Soon following this news a sense of national jubilation overtook the nation. For most Bhutanese Losar had come a few days early. The Facebook and Twitter accounts of Bhutanese citizens went into a hyper drive with citizens clearly expressing their happiness in various ways.

Apart from the government’s own celebration plans ordinary citizens and various other agencies announced their own celebrations from various events to offering butter lamps and prayers.

The Prince, who is the first Royal Child of His Majesty the King and Her Majesty the Queen, was delivered safely at the Lingkana Palace, Thimphu. His Majesty was at Her Majesty’s side during the time of the delivery. Following the Royal Birth, His Royal Highness was first presented to His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo.

Any anxieties were assuaged when the announcement said that Her Majesty and His Royal Highness are both in perfect health.

All sacred Bhutanese traditions were observed for the auspicious occasion, with His Holiness the Je Khenpo presiding over the religious ceremonies.

Their Majesties and members of the Royal family were also filled with profound joy on the birth of His Royal Highness.

Their Majesties expressed appreciation to the Bhutanese medical team for their service.

Their Majesties also expressed heartfelt gratitude to the Zhung Dratshang, Rabdeys, and other religious organizations that performed prayer ceremonies in all the Dzongs and Lhakhangs across the country for the wellbeing of His Royal Highness, Their Majesties, and the people of Bhutan.

On Saturday His Majesty The King offered prayers at the Tashichhodzong, Dechenphu Lhakhang, Pangrizampa Lhakhang, and the Gesar Lhakhang.

Hundreds of well-wishers gathered at these nyes (sacred sites) and other Dzongs and Lhakhangs across the country to offer prayers of gratitude on the joyous occasion of the Royal Birth. People offered Karmi Kom (butter lamps), hoisted Prayer Flags at all sacred sites. The Bhutanese diasporas overseas has also been offering prayers and celebrating the auspicious occasion.

Excited well-wishers are sharing numerous auspicious signs (taktshen), symbols, and images on the social media. One of these was many clouds forming into what looked like multiple dragons.

Sharing the joy of the Bhutanese people, His Holiness the Je Khenpo explained the extraordinary tendrel under which His Royal Highness The Gyalsey was born. His Holiness the Je Khenpo is presiding over sacred ceremonies in Tashichhodzong, Thimphu, and kurims (religious ceremonies) that are being conducted by the Zhung Dratshang (Central Monk Body) and clergy in all the Dzongs and important lhakhangs across the country.

The Prime Minister apart from declaring that Monday is a national holiday to celebrate the Royal Birth said that the historic Drukgyel Dzong in Paro will be restored to its former glory to commemorate the celebrations. The Salhang ceremony for the dzong was conducted on Saturday.

Kutens (sacred objects) are being repaired, restored and gilded in the Tashichhodzong and Punakha Dzong, to mark the birth of the Gyalsey.

A sapling of the Bodhi tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment was planted at Takila in Lhuentshe.

Besides this, 108 trees of sacred significance were planted in Thimphu, Punakha, Tsirang, Dagana, and Sarpang to mark the Royal Birth. These included Oak, Cypress, Rosary Tree, Bodhi tree, and white Sandalwood.

Sachu Bumter (blessed vessels) were installed by the Jigten Wangchuk Tshogpa at the sources of five water bodies in Punakha, to bless the waters that course through the country.

Two chortens will be built in Thrumsengla and Pelela to mark the occasion. The salhang tendrel for these chortens were conducted today.

Priests from the Hindu community in the Southern dzongkhags are offering prayers and havaan (fire offerings) at the Samtse Mandir. The ceremony includes recitations of the Veda, Vagawat Puran, Shiva Puran, Devi Vagawat, Rudri and Chandi.

The Samtse Shivalaya Mandir, which was built upon the Royal Command of His Majesty The King as a gift to the Hindu Community in Bhutan to mark the Royal Wedding, was consecrated on Saturday coinciding with the Royal Birth.

Meanwhile, Their Majesties granted soelra to all children born in the country on the auspicious day of the Royal Birth.

His Majesty Commanded that the government should not spend valuable resources on grand celebrations but should commemorate the Royal Birth with initiatives that will have long-term benefits for the country and people. Their Majesties expressed their wish that the most important focus should be the tendrel of the Royal Birth.

The Royal birth too place in a marvelous conjunction of events, or tendril. The Year of the Male Fire Monkey, which comes but once in 60 years, is the auspicious year of the birth of Guru Rinpoche, and 2016 marks 400 years since the arrival of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel to Bhutan.

The Prime Minister, Chief Justice, Speaker of the National Assembly, Chairperson of the National Council, Cabinet Ministers, and Heads of Armed Forces and Constitutional Bodies offered Losar Tashi Delek Khadhar to His Majesty The King at the Lingkana Palace on 9th February.

On Losar the very first official photograph of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey was released. In a Losar Kupar from Lingkana Palace, His Royal Highness The Gyalsey was surrounded by His Majesty The King, His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo, and Her Majesty The Gyaltsuen.

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