LARJAB DRAKAR CHOELING DRUBDEY

Sometime between 1701 and 1707, Lama KuenzangChophel, the disciple of the 9th Je Khenpo Shakya Rinchen built the temple of Larjab Drakar Choeling to fulfil his Root Guru’s vision.

This Goenpa is located behind Yakpogang hill and it faces south. The villages of Wamrong, Pemagatshel and Thangrong can be seen from this Goenpa. It is surrounded by alpine forests and mountains.

It is believed that Lama Kuenzang Chophel had subdued the local demon called Sonam Gyamtsho, who wore human form, there. It is also believed that this place is equivalent to Taktshang monastery in Paro in terms of historical/ religious importance. Those people in the east who cannot visit Taktshang can visit this place and accumulate same amount of merit.

When Lama Kuenzang Chophel was alive, he had hundreds of disciples. Since they lived secluded lives, they had their own chorten to pray and practice. They also had grinding stones and grain crushers to take care of their food supplies. Not many people know about how and from where the disciples had come to live with Lama Kuenzang Chophel nor do they know what had happened to them after the death of the lama.

There is a legend of a traditional bridge called Drubthob Zampa somewhere in between Lingmethang and the ruins of the Zhongar Dzong. It came to be known by that name as hundred disciples of Lama Kuenzang Chohel had built the bridge in a day.

Completion of a bridge within a day was taken as a good sign for the spread of Buddha Dharma. Since then it is known to have spread to all levels in the east, especially in Trashigang and this can be confirmed from the fact that there are many drubdeys, goendeys and other places of religious interest in eastern Bhutan today.

In 1995, Mongar Lama Neten Namgay and Tsanphu Drubdey Lopen Norbu Gyeltshen initiated the renovation of Mongar Larjab Drakar Choeling. They were being supported by the people of Chaskhar and Thangrong gewogs. They also added three more storeys to the monastery.

After the reconstruction, the people appealed to H.E. Gyeltshen Trulku Rinpoche to open up the Drubdey and accordingly, Rinpoche founded the Drubdey with ten lay monks. Although Rinpoche supported the Drubdey through his private fund in the initial stages, the Drubdey is now looked after by the government.

It takes an hour and a half to reach the monastery from the nearest road point, Chompa, Korila. The place boasts a host of pilgrimage sites.