Books: Bhutan’s Beloved Beacon, The World’s Enigma, a book dedicated to the Wangchuck dynasty and its fourth torchbearer, His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, was launched coinciding with the coronation of His Majesty the King yesterday.

As a part of the 60th birth anniversary celebration of the Fourth Druk Gyalpo, the 51-paged coffee table book is a journey, encapsulating the selfless dedication of the Fourth Druk Gyalpo towards the development of the country.

The book contains illustrations and short write-ups underlining 14 themes of the illustrious leader’s legacies and significant moments.

The journey of the book began a year ago at the dusty gates of the Tiny Toes day-care centre at Kalabazar in Thimphu. The writer of the book Ugyen Tenzin and artist Kinzang Tshering met while dropping their children at the centre.

“We realized that both of us shared the passion and the will to take on a challenging task,” Ugyen Tenzin said. “We can never thank enough for all his contributions to the country and the people. With all our limitations, we have attempted to carve out a few of His Majesty’s impeccable vision for the country.”

Kinzang Tshering, 42 who works at the Department of Local Governance said that although the journey was challenging, the reward from the end product is fulfilling. “This book should inspire every individual by the example of life His Majesty led,” he said.

The chief guest at the launch, the former Chief Justice Lyonpo Sonam Tobgye said that the book will remind us of what His Majesty did and what others ought to do and the responsibility the citizens owe to the nation.

“What I say today may not be remembered, but what His Majesty said and did will echo and reverberate across the valleys, over the mountains and over the ages,” he said. “It’s not the life that he led but the life he inspired, a life that is the embodiment of examples. His Majesty is truly an epitome of Buddhist values of impermanence and detachment.”

Similarly, on Saturday the Literary and Publications of the Sub-committee of the 60th Birth Anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo also launched three books.

The first one, Moments with the Fourth Druk Gyalpo, Narratives of the ordinary people’s encounters with an extraordinary King is a collection of personal and informal yet extraordinary moments between people from all walks of life and Drugyal Zhipa.

The collection consists of more than 32 narratives depicting the close bond between the people and the King. The compiler and writer of the book, Rinzin Wangchuk said that with the festive mood of the celebration of the 60th birth anniversary many books on His Majesty’s achievements and impeccable vision are being published.

However, Rinzin Wangchuk, who is also the Dzongkha editor of Kuensel newspaper said that his book, published by Kuensel Corporation Limited,  is different in the sense that it contains some of the most memorable moments ordinary individuals had with the visionary leader.

In one of the narratives, His Majesty is found carrying a farmer’s load of firewood in Tashidingkha, on the outskirts of Thimphu. While in another, His Majesty is found pushing a car to get it started.

“My ferocious guard dog snapped out of its chain and came barking straight at the King but abruptly stopped and sat there, subdued, wagging its tail as if he knew His Majesty all along,” it is written in one of the articles in the book.

Rinzin Wangchuk in his introduction to the book said that to many, meeting His Majesty by the road was a life changing moment, which occurred when His Majesty was biking on the outskirts of the city. He adds that the stories highlight His Majesty’s concern about the importance of education, the nation’s future and a national conscience for the country to move forward.

The other two books, a Coffee table book is a collection of images from the life of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo, who worked selflessly for the peace, prosperity, progress of democratic Bhutan. The images document memorable periods in the history of Bhutan.

Titled ‘A King’s Vision of development for his country and its people,” is the third book edited by Ngeedrup Zangpo and published by Bhutan Observer. It is a compendium of reflective essays contributed by some of most illustrious public servants, retired and serving, who have served His Majesty the Fourth King closely. The essays bore of extensive knowledge and deep wisdom shows how committed His Majesty has been to serving Bhutan and the Bhutanese. It has a total of 18 essays focusing on different areas of development.

Three books were commissioned by the Literary and Publications Sub-Committee to commemorate the 60th Birth Anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo and were launched by Her Royal Highness Ashi Pema Choden Wangchuck at the Rabjung quiz finale on Saturday.

Younten Tshedup