Yonphu tshechu ends

Culture: The three-day annual Chotpa of Yonphu Ugyen Choling Lhakhang in Kanglung ended yesterday.

The tshechu is more than 400-years old. Elders say that Choeje Sangdag, the youngest son of Terton Pema Lingpa, came looking for a suitable place to establish his religious seat.

On reaching Yonphu, he gave blessing to the local people. The community offered the land to the lama. The place then was called YuenPhuel. With some alteration, today it has become Yonphu.

Legend has it that evil spirits prevented the construction of the temple. To pacify them, the lama emanated and performed the mask dance in the form of Homchham or naked dance.

While the spirits were engrossed with the performance, the lama also manifested in the form of two pigs and performed the Saduel Phagchham to do the groundbreaking to build the temple. Thereafter, the temple was built without any obstructions.

Performing the dances are part of the tshechu. Homchham is performed early in the morning before the Phagchham. The naked dance has undergone some change and is now performed with the dancers wearing skull masks and holding phalluses in their hands. Contributed by Ugyen Wangdi, Kanglung

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