Festivals in Ladakh are a colourful affair that will surely make you fall in love with its culture. This region in India will be decked up for the yearly Galdan Namchot Festival on December 7, 2023. In Ladakh, this lively festival heralds the start of the New Year’s festivities, which are lavishly observed. It is also known as the festival of light, but why and what is this festival about? Well, keep reading to know!
Galdan Namchot: Ladakh Is All Set To Celebrate Its Festival Of Lights
“Greetings to all as Ladakh celebrates the #festivaloflight “Galdan Namchot”. It is celebrated for commemorating the birthday and the Buddhahood of Tibetan saint-scholar, Tsongkhapa. #Ladakh #festivals #Himalayas #GaldanNamchot #BuloBulo @utladakhtourism @iittmofficial @iccr_hq pic.twitter.com/xPGB7jUDnV
— ICCR in Netherlands (@iccr_TheHague) December 30, 2021
In Ladakh, Galdan Namchot is also known as the festival of lights since light offerings can be seen everywhere.
In observance of the triumph of light over darkness, Ladakhis light butter lamps on this day. This festival makes people feel happy and warm, even in the chilly, bitter winter months. For the inhabitants of Ladakh, this festival is especially important since it marks the birth and enlightenment of Je Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism.
On this favourable occasion #Galdanamchot . I would like to wish
a very happy galdan namchot to all my elders, youngers and friends.#Galdanamchot is observed to celebrate the birth and the attainment of buddhahood of Je-Tsongkhapa#GaldanNamchot pic.twitter.com/6L7pMRS5dX
— Stanzin Spaldon (@StanzinSpaldon4) December 18, 2022
In 1357, Je Tsongkhapa was born in the Tibetan city of Tsongkha in Amdo (now Haidong and Xining, Qinghai). He was a well-known Tibetan Buddhist teacher whose teachings helped to establish the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism.
In observance of Je Tsongkhapa’s birthday and Buddhahood, Galdan Namchot is observed on the twenty-fifth day of the tenth month of the Tibetan lunar calendar. In addition, Galdan Namchot celebrates the start of a new year that lasts until the Dosmoche festival in February, which occurs five days after the Galdan Namchot festival. (As per Times Travel)
People Light Butter Lamps
Happy Galdan Namchot to all the people ❣️ pic.twitter.com/JCEZNqKuE6
— Nawang Sonam (@nawangofficial) December 18, 2022
While every house is exquisitely ornamented, the beauty of monasteries simply surpasses everything. Thousands of people come to the monasteries in Ladakh to pray and light butter lamps as part of the festival’s great celebration of these places. It’s an impressive sight.
Make sure to attend the festival if you are going to be in Ladakh this time. It is a wonderful experience to attend the special prayers and rituals held by the monasteries in honour of Je Tsongkhapa.
Today Ladakh celebrates the Festival of Light on the auspicious occasion of Galdan Ngamchot.
With this occasion, New Year of Ladakh “Losar” begins.
Greetings on Galdan Namchot. pic.twitter.com/8wCC20R24t
— Jamyang Tsering Namgyal (@jtnladakh) December 29, 2021
However, turning on the lamps is more crucial. A few days prior to the festival, people would get ready. One by one, the believers would create butter lamps. Additionally, it is stated that every monk must build more than thirty butter lamps—and that the quantity must be odd to symbolise auspiciousness.
God Detect Aroma And Come For Feast
— डॉ अनिल कुमार ‘भारत’🇮🇳 (@DrAnilrss) December 10, 2020
According to Buddhist texts, gods do not consume human food, but when they detect the aroma of smoking, they will come for a feast. As a result, Tibetans use this occasion to make wishes, offer prayers for good fortune, and welcome gods and Buddhas into their houses.
In homes, traditional foods like momo, thukpa, and butter tea are made and served.
— डॉ अनिल कुमार ‘भारत’🇮🇳 (@DrAnilrss) December 21, 2019
The fact that a festival in Ladakh is incomplete without a feast is one of its many wonderful aspects. Certainly, Galdan Namchot is not an exception. If you want to try the local food, now is a fantastic time to visit Ladakh.
The Ladakhi people offer the traditional ceremonial scarf known as a khattak. The Galdan Namchot festival occurs on the twenty-fifth day of the tenth month of the Tibetan lunar calendar, which is followed by Ladakh. Consequently, the celebration occurs on various dates each year in the Gregorian calendar.
Make sure to attend the festival if you are going to be in Ladakh this time. It is a wonderful experience to attend the special prayers and rituals held by the monasteries in honour of Je Tsongkhapa
Cover Image Courtesy: @iccr_TheHague/X(formerly Twitter)
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