Dumtseg Lhakhang

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Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang, commonly known as Dumtseg Lhakhang, is located at an edge of a hill between Paro and Dopchari valley. The Lhakhang is unique in its art form which looks like a chorten, while most other Lhakhangs in Bhutan are of different design.

Legend has it that this particular Lhakhang was built by saint Thangtong Gyalpo, a Buddhist Chod Master as well as a blacksmith and an architect. It is believed that Thangton Gyalpo built this Lhakhang to subdue a serpentine demon. Another source claims that the Lhakhang was built on a hill that looks like a frog to counteract the Sadag (earth-owning spirit) and Lunyen (powerful naga spirit).

Thangtong Gyalpo
Source: magiedubouddha.com

In 1841, Je Khenpo, Sherab Gyeltshen, restored the temple with the help of the local people from the village and carved their names on the wooden pillars which hold the ground floor of the temple.

The Lhakhang itself is conceived as a Mandala comprising three floors, representing hell, earth and heaven. The Lhakhang also contains many Buddhist paintings and iconography. The ground floor hols five Buddhas of meditation, as well as statues of Thangtong Gyalpo, Guru Rinpoche, and Avalokiteshvara. The second floor is home to depictions of Mahakala and hundred peaceful and wrathful deities on the outer wall, while the inner wall displays Bardo, the intermediate state between death and rebirth. The third floor displays the Tantric deities in Buddhism.

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