Kyichu Lhakhang

Kyichu Lhakhang location is in the north of Paro town. It is one of the ancient, quiet and beautiful temples in Bhutan. It also goes by the names Lho Kyerchu or Kyerchu, and it is considered to be the sacred Jewel of Bhutan. The temple was established by the Buddhist King Songstsen Gampo of Tibet to overcome the giant ogress that laid across Tibet and Himalayas preventing the spread of Buddhism. The king is believed to have built the temple at the left foot of the enormous ogress. Kyichu Lhakhang was among the 12 temples out of the 108 temples that had been constructed on definite plans in the seventeenth century. The temple's construction was done overnight. Kyichu Lhakhang was initially small in size but after multiple visits over the years by the Buddhist saints, the temple expanded both in grandeur and size.

In the 8th century, Guru Padmasambhava was believed to have visited the Kyichu Lhakhang and hidden a variety of treasures in the temple. Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal took over the temple in 1674. The temple was later reconstructed in the year 1836-1838 by the 25th Je Khenpo Sherab Gyaltshen. In 1968, a new structure of the temple was built and named Guru Lhakang. The extension was made by the Royal Queen Mother Ashi Kezang Choden Wangchuck. Other Buddhist Saint that visited Kyichu Lhakhang temple for prayers also created an impact by expanding the temple. The prominent Buddhist saints were Phajo Dugom Zhigpo, Lam Kha Nga and Guru Rinpoche and many more in the 8th century.

 

What you can find in Kyichu Lhakhang

As one walks toward Kyichu Lhakhang, the environment is quiet and serene. An ancient monastery is a fantastic place that you will find elderly pilgrims that are often walking around the temple as they spin the prayers wheels. Inside the inner courtyard, there is a painting of the King named Gesar of Ling on the wall just near the entrance. The king was a renowned warrior in Tibet, and his epic poem is the longest in the world according to the history.

The Kyichu Lhakang conceals the statue of Jowo Jamba originally from the 7th century. The icon is one of the greatest treasure of the valley. There is also another statue of Chenrezig outside the shrine that has 1000arms and 11 heads. There is the wooden floor that has grooves worn by the generations of prostrators. The main entrance door is coated with gold. Kyichu Lhakhang holds ancient relics and the floor of the main temple constructed with wood decorated with turquoise and other precious stones and gems.

The structure next to Kyichu Lhakhang is the Guru Lhakhang which consists of Kurukulla and 5-meter high statue of Guru Rinpoche holding an arrow made of flowers and a bow. On the outside of the temple, there are two orange trees that bear fruits throughout the year. There is also monk houses, prayer wheels, Lenza script on tiny prayer wheels.

Kyichu Lhakhang is a place of art and culture that is very important to historians, art connoisseurs and visitors all around the globe. The oldest monastery is an incredible place for a visit.

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