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Yungdrung Ling Monastery holds Tibet's oldest religion

07-20-2011 14:30 BJT Special Report:This is Tibet |

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Rala Yungdrung Ling Monastery is regarded as the ancestor monastery of Bon religion in Tibet. It raises questions as to what is Bon religion and does it have any connection with Tibetan Buddhism.

Rala Yungdrung Ling Monastery is located in Namling County of western Tibet's Shigatse Prefecture.

Built in the 7th century under Songtsan Gambo's reign, it's a well-known Monastery of Bon religion.

Long before the introduction of Buddhism, Bon was firmly established and flourishing in the land of snow. It's the primitive and authentic religion of ancient Tibetans.

Kelsang Rigzen, abbot of Yungdrung Ling Monastery said, "Bon religion is Tibet's first indigenous religion. It originated in Zhangzhung, an ancient kingdom of western and northwestern Tibet. The father of Bon is Shenrap Miwoche. He came to Tibet, established Bon and wrote down the first Bon scriptures. But by then, Bon hadn't formed a complete theoretical system."

Rala Yungdrung Ling Monastery is regarded as the ancestor monastery of Bon
religion in Tibet. It raises questions as to what is Bon religion and does
it have any connection with Tibetan Buddhism.

But along with the introduction of Buddhism into Tibet, Bon religion fell on the verge of extinction, and its influence became insignificant. However, many native Bon elements were incorporated into the incoming religion.

Today, Bon has continued to flourish in the eastern and northeastern regions of Tibet. Although much in modern Bon is similar to Tibetan Buddhism, Bon retains the richness and flavor of its pre-Buddhist roots.

Rala Yungdrung Ling Monastery is regarded as the ancestor monastery of Bon
religion in Tibet. It raises questions as to what is Bon religion and does
it have any connection with Tibetan Buddhism.

Still, many devout Bon followers travel a long way to Yungdrung Ling Monastery to worship.

Samdrup, herdsman from Nakchu county, said, "It's a very tough journey. But we have to come here because the Yungdrung Ling Monastery is so sacred."

As it's in a remote area, Yungdrung Ling Monastery is always quiet and peaceful. The simple life of monks here is repeated each day. But the monastery is passing on Tibet's most primitive civilization.

 

Editor:Zhang Jingya |Source: CNTV.CN

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