The Kingdom of Bhutan, The Last Shangri-la

Kingdom of Bhutan

Spirituality is the goal of the country more than the nation’s economic stability.

Bhutan is one of the most exotic and well preserved countries in the world. To say it is preserve pertains to the nation’s preservation of their culture.

The name of Bhutan means High Land, a country extremely influenced by Tibetan culture but Bhutanese ascribed their country as the Land of the Thunder Dragon or "Druk Yul".

The Last Shangri-La of World– this the appointed banner given to the Kingdom of Bhutan perhaps because of its majestic and untainted tradition of external influences especially when it comes to their beliefs.

Shangri-la would mean " a mystical harmonious valley, gently guided by a monastery synonymous with any earthly paradise but a mythical Himalayan utopia."

This is the imagery which the Kingdom of Bhutan is all about. The history of Bhutan however is coated with mythology perhaps because of the mysticism.

"Historically, Bhutan was known by many names, such as ‘Lho Mon’ (Southern Land of Darkness), ‘Lho Tsendenjong’ (Southern Land of the Sandalwood), ‘Lhomen Khazhi’ (Southern Land of Four Approaches), and ‘Lho Men Jong’ (Southern Land of Medicinal Herbs)."

The Kingdom of Bhutan is situated between India and China gifted with rich resources, surrounded by mountains that cares for a vast variety of fauna. Foreign influences and tourism did not penetrate the country not until recently. And to visit and step on the soils of Bhutan is a remarkable journey for individual.

Tibetan Buddhism was introduced to the country by the 9th century A.D. when they were upheavals in Tibet. The monks were forced to move to Bhutan and then on the vast and exotic land housed the Tibetan Buddhist religion.

Interesting about Bhutan perhaps is its continuous enigma which attracts many to the place. As mentioned earlier, being considered as the Last Shangri-la, it reflects a paradise unknown now to the modern world.

The land is inhabited by different people who go on living in the valleys. Various ethnic groups compose of the population of Bhutan but are united by one ruler.

The government paid attention in preserving Tibetan Buddhist culture. Moreover, the kingdom of Bhutan is considered the sanctuary and refuge of traditional Himalayan Buddhism culture. Their religion is so important to the country that they pay high regard to spiritual more than anything else.

Bhutanese have treasured the gift of their land. They have respected their surroundings as much as they respect higher spiritually practicing it through their relations with people and their natural resources.

Books have enveloped the land as a mystical place perhaps because the value of Bhutanese culture to contemplation and meditation seemed impossible and to attain balance with nature in the every growing industrialized and materialistic world is unattainable.

Bhutan as the Last Shangri-la is but a reflection of a world where value lies on the respect of life in all forms.

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