Monastery of Ladakh Zanskar

Phukthal Monastery
Since the monastery is build inside the huge cave its name Phukthar ( Through the develop in Cave) is said to drive the from this. Below the monastery there is famous river of TSARAP LINGTI CHU .In the monastery there are 70 monks in residence. More than 37 monks are studied in south karantaka, to study the Philosophy and Orthodex.The monks are Gelukpa in a yellow sect ( Yellow hat) the great disciple of Tsonkhapa.
It was founded in ancient times by the Phagspa Sherab Zanpo, in 11th century. a great translator of was the teacher Dorje Rinchen ,who caused it to the flourish and the Bodhisattava Chansem Sherab Zangpo. Who introduced there the order of Ribo Gaden pa. in the huge cave there is a sharing and secrect relics of Changsem Sherab Zanpo in side the stupa. The most famous visit is the Gonkhang, there visit the Spoken Sri- Devi, Vajra- Bhairava, chakra-samvara, Haya – Griva, Dharma-raja ( Yama),Maha –Kala, Avalokiteshvara and Tara.
Dukhang, the cave of Tsonka Meditate,Tsonkhapa is the Second Budha of Gyalwa Nispa, whos introduced the Gelukpa. He was born in 1357 in Eastern Tibet of Dosmad. He was entered the Mahaparinirvana at the age of Sixty htree in 1419 A.D.
STONBA LAHKANG, The palace of Gautama Buddha. in 10th century the Changsem Sherab zangpa was meditate in the Lakhang and he constructed the famous secrect room. Moreover in the 18th century there is a one great Hungarain man Krose-mode crose, he stayed at the Monastery from 1824 to 1826. He spented nearly a two year for study the Buddhist philosophy and learn the Buddhism.
The yearly annual Gustor festival was held in a winter times on 28th and 29th days of the 12th Tibetan month. .On top of the huge cave there is ever green Juniper tree, grow like a umbrella.inside the cage there is also a spring water. The best way to visit the famous monastery from the Darcha – padum trek.

Barden Monastery:
It was situated nearly a 8 kilometre from the distance of capiotal padum zanskar, on top of the high cliff by the side of Lungnak river, Tsarap was founde by the Buddhisattova DEBA GYATSO. About the more than 450 years have elapsed since it was build. The principal Image ia a Gandhara statue of the maiteria, two feet in height which is said to have was explained that it cames in ancient times from the Kashmir. There are about the 30 monks are residence.the successive reincarnation of Stakna Stullku act as the incumbent. The monastery was previously situated on top of the mountain called THA-LHA. The annual yearly festival was held in the 14th and 15th of 4rth month of Tibetan.

Mune Gonpa:
It was 17 kilometer from the padum. The mune gonpas was called the Disketling, which was founded by the Boddhisattva SHERAB ZANGPO. About 25 monks are reside in the monastery. There are many secret Sharine and relics to see, the gonpa was in gelukpa sect a yellow hat.

Karsha Monastery:
The Karsha Monastery is situated in the Karsha village of the Zanskar region. The Karsha, is also a largest monastery of Zanskar, is Karsha Chamspaling Gonpa. It found by Phagspa Shesrab Zangpo in late of 12 century, the translator of Zanskar. it stands today, was the result of the efforts of the Teacher, Dorje Shesrab. It was under him only that the monastery flourished and prospered. Shesrab Zangpo of Stod was the one to introduce the Gelukpa Order in the Karsha Gompa of Leh Ladakh.
The monastery have consists of a number of shrines and relics of the most exquisite wall paintings, by the Lama Dzadpa Dorje. The collection of Karsha Gompa also includes the bone relics of Dorje Rinchen. It serves as the residence of approximately 50 monks. The Gustor Festival is celebrated at Karsha every year, on the 28th and 29th day of the sixth month of the Tibetan calendar. The celebrations also include the performance of the sacred mask dance. Temples built by Rinchen Zangpo, the translator, known as the Thugsjechhenpoi Lhakhang and the Lhakhang Karpo, are situated near the Karsha Monastery. Also close by the monasteries of a nunnery called Dorjezong, and Chukchikjal situated at the top of the valley.

Zongkul monastery:
The Zongkul Gonpa is stands perched on the rock face of the Ating George. There is an interesting legend associated with the Zongkul Monastery of Ladakh. It is said to be connected with Naropa, the famous Indian Yogi from Vikramshila. Infact, it is believed that he even used the two caves of the monastery for the purpose of his solitary meditation. Even today, one can see Naropa's footprint embedded in the rock and his sacred spring, located inside the meditation cave.
After Naropa meditated here, the monastery became the sacred place of meditation for all the mahasiddhas of Zanskar. Enlightened people like Dubchen Kunga Gyatso, Dubchen Nawang Tsering, Dzadpa Dorje, Karmapa, Kunga Choslag, etc have used Zongkul for meditation purposes. The Zongkhul Gompa of Leh Ladakh consists of a number of blessed shrines.

Sani Monastery:
Sani Monastery is the branch of the Drukpa Kagyudpa School. It is situated on the road to Kargil, at a distance of approximately 6 km to the west of Padum. The entire Sani Monastery of Ladakh has been built in parts, each dating back to a different century. The chorten inside the oldest part of Sani Monastery is believed to be erected in the 2nd century AD. The main thing visit at sani, the kanika Stupa, which is constructed by king kanishka in his life. othere side there is a famous spoken sharing of Naropa, which is flied from kasmire durinh the like time of Kanisha.
The Kanika Stupa in the backyard of its walled complex. Because of the existence of this stupa, it is believed that the monastery was associated with Kanishka, Kushan ruler of 2nd century AD. The central praying hall is situated in the main building of the monastery and stands ornamented with a rich collection of the statues of popular Buddhist divinities and Kargud-pa high lamas. Even the walls of the praying hall are adorned with frescoes and thangkas.
The most beautiful stucco murals depicting landscapes and floral designs, based on the life of Guru Padmasambhava. Outside the complex of the monastery is one of the eight most important cremation grounds of Tibetan Buddhists. The cemetery stands encircled by a ring of ancient rock-carvings, which reveal a touch of the Indian art.
The Sani Gompa of Leh Ladakh is also alleged to be connected with the famous Indian Yogi Naropa. It is believed that the Yogi meditated under the Kanika Stupa, situated in the backyard of the monastery. In month of Tibetan july i.e. on the eve of the Naro-Nasjal Festival. In this festival, the lamas from Bardan Monastery perform masked dances as ritual offering.

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- Merce Alian Hurstel (France)

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