Hemis Tsechu

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Hemis Tsechu is a two-day annual festival held in the courtyard of Hemis Monastery. It is the biggest and most famous of the monastic festivals. It is dedicated to Padmasambhava, the patron saint of Tibetan Buddhism and the one who brought Buddhism from India to Tibet. The taming, conversion and eventual integration of the pre-Buddhist Bon-po gods and demons into the Buddhist pantheon as guardian divinities are reverently attributed to him. Tse-chu refers to the 10th day of every Tibetan lunar month and Tse-chu of the fifth month and the tenth month are celebrated as the birth anniversary of Padmasambhava. The Hemis dance-drama depicts the magical feats of Padmasmbhava, also known as Guru Rimpoche, in his eight different manifestations to vanquish the enemies of Buddhism and for its propagation. Every 12 years in the Tibetan Year of the Monkey, giant Two-storey high ‘Thankga’ depicting Padmasambhava is displayed. This famous Thankga, richly embroidered with pearls and and semi-precious stones, was last displayed in 2004.

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