Community: His Holiness the Je Khenpo granted an audience to 400 youths from eight schools in Thimphu and the Youth Group Association of Bhutan (YGAB) at the Kuenrey of the Trashichhodzong in Thimphu, to observe International Youth Day on August 13.

HH the Je Khenpo compared the youth to the first phase of the full moon, striving to become the full moon. His Holiness said that the youth are considered important across the globe and in Bhutan as well.

His Holiness spoke on the importance of taking refuge in the Triple Gem and local deities, being compassionate, respecting parents and teachers, and learning from  mistakes rather than reacting to them, among others.

His Holiness said that human life is precious and not to commit suicide when life does not go as planned. Other living beings like pigs and fishes will suffer unbearable pain after learning that they are being killed for meat, His Holiness said. However, although their pain is immense, they don’t have the ability to escape from the suffering and commit suicide.

“As a human being, we have the capacity to overcome and solve all the problems in life,” His Holiness said.

A participant, Jigme Nidup, said that His Holiness’s talk changed his perception on life. “No matter how big your life’s problems are, you can always solve it,” he said. “Human life is precious.”

The youths also offered prayers to the Buddha seeking blessings to overcome all opposing and negative conditions and the auspiciousness of peace and happiness at all times. His Holiness the Je Khenpo wrote the prayer for the youths.

A Motithang Higher Secondary School student, Dolma Tshering, said that His Holiness’s talk on the importance of the mother in a child’s life made her realise her mother’s importance in her life.“I was always busy with my friends and school that I never thought about my mother’s role and importance.”

Another student, Thinley Dema, said that the day is observed internationally on August 12, to create awareness and draw attention to issues that the youth face.

The Bhutan GNH Youth in collaboration with the Zhung Dratshang and YGAB, for the first time, observed the day in the country.

The founder and CEO of Bhutan GNH Youth, Rigzin Regal, said that the particular event is celebrated to commemorate the three auspicious events: the birth year of Guru Rinpoche, 400 years of the arrival of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel in Bhutan and the birth of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey.

Bhutan GNH youth is a group of youths formed to work on the concept of Gross National Happiness. Rigzin Regal said that the group works towards making every Bhutanese youth a living GNH citizen.

“Bhutan GNH Youth aims to nurture the minds of our fellow youths towards a happy and successful life inculcating the values of Gross National Happiness,” he said.

Dechen Tshomo