India-Bhutan

Context:

  • Celebrating 50-years of formalization of diplomatic ties between India and Bhutan, a two-day international conference on 8th century Himalayan sage Guru Padmasambhava was held in New Delhi that saw the participation of distinguished scholars from both countries.

More details:

  • The conference, organised by the Centre for Escalation of Peace (CEP) and titled ‘Life and Legacy of Guru Padmasambhava’, was held on January 29-30. Scholars from both countries discussed the Guru who was born in India and moved towards Bhutan in the 8th century to spread Buddhism and Buddhist teachings all across the Himalayan region.

Guru Padmasambhava:

  • Guru Padmasambhava was born in India and is highly respected in Bhutan. India-Bhutan relations have been good all through the last 70 years. In fact, from the earliest part of the 20th century, even during the British era, we had good relations with Bhutan.
  • Guru Padmasambhava visited Bhutan two times. His importance is seen everywhere. There is an image or painting of the guru in every Bhutanese home or temple.
  • The Guru who is from India, who spent a large amount of his time in Nalanda there and then he travelled across the Himalayas. He is known as the second Buddha because he brought Buddhism in Bhutan and other Himalayan countries. So, almost from the beginning of sovereignty as a state in the country, Bhutan and India have this connection. It is almost like the umbilical cord.
  • Thangka paintings, sculptures and photographs portrayed the life and teachings of the Guru, who is also known as the second Buddha as he played a very crucial role in spreading Buddhism in North-East India, Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet.

Source: Business Standard