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Tshoglham – The king of shoes

COVER SORY: Inside the Traditional Boot House in Chubachu, Thimphu, eight bootmakers are busy on their machines.  The noise is deafening and the mid-day sun is searing.

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Chothrul Dawa – The month of miracles

WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO: The first month of the Bhutanese calendar is called Chothrul Dawa, literally the month of miracles. It is believed to be the month when Buddha performed many miracles.

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A ready reckoner to getting ‘ripped’

HEALTH AND FITNESS: I’m a big fan of yours and have been following your Facebook page. I’m planning to cut down some weight. I currently weigh 95kg. I started gym from December 18, 2013. I thought of gaining mass till 100kg and then cutting down. Is it a right time to cut or gain some more mass? 

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Layaps have come a long way

COVER STORY: Wangmo, 58, a highlander from Thangzo, Laya was in Punaka to attend the three-day Punakha tsechu that concluded last week.  She comes to Punakha every winter.  This time, she was with her mother and friends.  Wangmo has with her some thick Chinese blankets, a flask and a carpet.  These are gifts for her host in Punakha.

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The winter descent

Zam is from Lungu in Laya.  She is 28.  She has been in Punakha for more than a month.  Today, Zam and family are preparing to go back. Zam, a mother of two school-going children, comes down to Gasa and Punakha every year with her husband and children.  While in …

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Carrying a weapon is a sign of weakness

Whenever I meet lama in town at night, lama always told me not to carry a knife and to take it home. But I feel safer with a weapon. It gives me a feeling of strength. Please advise me more.

Rigzin, Thimphu      

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Choe lhag ni: Why do we recite scriptures

WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO: The recitation of Buddhist sutras is a very ancient tradition. After the Buddha passed away, his teachings were passed down orally for about three centuries. The master would recite and transmit the teachings to the disciple who will memorise, recite and pass it down again. Such line of oral transmission from mouth to ear is called nyengyud and people who are very learned were also called mangduthoepa or those who have heard a lot.

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Dago, the proud and fearless warrior

It was 1999 when Dago first took part as a pazap or warriors at Punakha Dromchhoe. He was 19, shy and hesitant. But he was determined to wear the red pazap gho, the khamar kabney (scarf) and iron helmet of the traditional warriors. In tshoglham (traditional boots) and with a patang (sword), he really looked and felt like a warrior.

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Building muscles the right way

HEALTH AND FITNESS: I have recently joined a gym. It has just been over a week. What are the biggest mistakes that people make at the gym? What should I eat before going to the gym? And how should I prepare physically before going to the gym? 

Tashi, Thimphu

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WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO: Tendrel literally means ‘dependent and connected’. It refers to Buddha’s theory of interdependence or dependent origination or law of causation. The Buddha explained that our life and existence are results of causes and conditions.

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The Changzamtog that once was

COVER STORY: The fields were vast and fertile, land was plenty, so was water, and farmers cultivated both paddy and winter crops.  They owned much of what today is Changzamtog.

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