Monday, July 23, 2018

Lessons from the Republic of Korea

Group photo of participants with program coordinators. Image courtesy: Korea Youth Work Agency.

For me and my friend Yeshi Tshewang, landing at Incheon International Airport on the morning of 6th July 2018 was like entering into a paradise on Earth. The rising popularity of Korean music and drama over the years has made South Korea a dreamland for many Bhutanese people especially the youth. The beautiful landscapes interwoven with the tapestry of beautiful people and their beautiful culture left us with a lot of curiosity and enthusiasm to explore more about the social, cultural, political and economic life of Korean people. We have been part of the Bhutanese delegation to attend the training on program development for teenagers and youth which is organized by Korea Oversea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) from 6-27 July 2018. Apart from the training, we have also been exploring and learning many different aspects of Korean life and I have a lot of memories and lessons to take back home.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Thai cave boys and Bhutanese river boys: the story that can never be forgotten

When the soccer fans across the globe were at the peak of their excitement watching the ongoing 2018 FIFA World Cup, we all know how a local football team in Thailand was going through the biggest ordeal of their life. It is very unfortunate that 12 young boys and their coach who were on a leisurely adventure into the Tham Luang cave complex had to meet such a fate. With all the internal passages blocked by flood water soon after they got inside, they were stuck underground for more than two weeks. Perching on a ledge more than 4 kilometers away from the cave-mouth, the only option the helpless boys had was to cling on to the hope that somebody might come to their rescue before they die of drowning due to the rising water-level around them or suffocation due to the exhaustion of oxygen inside the cave system.

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Meaningful vacations for children can make a difference in their lives

With the completion of mid-term exams in schools, the time has once again come for our children to take a well-deserved break from routine academic works. While the school vacations are a festive season for many students, it is also the time when they are exposed to risks. It is at this time that they need greater love and support from their parents and guardians to compensate the care and guidance they get from their teachers. If we fail as parents and guardians to give them the time they deserve, there is every chance that they might get carried away by negative influences.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

The importance of concentration: a call for a disciplined mind

Not so long ago, I was walking to my office with my son when a girl coming from the opposite direction nearly bumped into us. She was walking with her eyes glued to her mobile-phone screen. Similarly, my wife was once walking down the staircase of my office with 50 percent of her attention on the mobile phone in her hand when she missed a step and collapsed down. She nearly broke her leg. All such things happen when we work with divided attention. The 21st-century world has become so busy that we do not seem to have time to do one thing at a time. There are so many things that constantly distract us from our routine life and now we seem to have lost our ability to concentrate fully on what we are doing.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Dining in the Dark: Venturing out into the world of the visually impaired

Group photo of guests at the Dining in the Dark event. Image courtesy: FB page of Dining in the Dark Bhutan

While rest of the people in Thimphu city were busy settling down for the night on 6th June 2018, a group of special guests had gathered at Chh'a Bistro and Bar at Changzamtog to experience what was going to become one of the greatest adventures of their life. They had come to have ordinary dinner in an extraordinary environment. As they walked in through the door, they were blindfolded and escorted to their tables by volunteers. With their door to the world of light shut, they were left on their own to figure out how to make better use of their remaining four senses to perceive what was going on around them. For those who had never been in such an environment before, it was one of the most challenging moments of their life. Soon, the soup and other foods came on the table and not being able to see what was in front of them, they struggled even more as they groped for their foods. Some of them even had to eat with their hands as they could not use their spoons and forks. At the end of the ordeal, all the guests felt relieved that they have somehow managed to dine in the dark although some of the food items that were served were left untouched.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Key messages from my talk at Norbuling Rigter College in Paro

Photo of me giving the talk

No matter how many times you fall down, there is always a way to get up. When you lose your way in life and find yourself on the other side of the society, you should remember that there is always a u-turn somewhere to get back to the right lane. It is important to understand that problems are there just because there are solutions. When you find yourself stuck in between a rock and a hard surface, just sitting back and crying won’t solve the problem. You should keep on trying to push yourself up no matter how deep you think you have been sucked in. You should not care about how many times you have fallen down. You should focus on how to get up every time you fall down because as long as you keep on trying, there is always a chance to succeed unlike those who give up easily. The road to success does not run straight, It can even run through some of the darkest spots in life, but as it is popularly said, there is always a light at the end of a tunnel. This was the gist of my talk at Norbuling Rigter College in Paro which was organized by my office on 23rd May 2018 as part of the 14th episode of YouTurn, the monthly motivational talk for young people.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Chorten Kora: The sacred symbol of Trashi Yangtse

Photo taken in front of Chorten Kora stupa

When you reach Trashi Yangtse, the first thing that greets your eyes is the spectacular view of Chorten Kora stupa which stands majestically on the bank of Kholongchhu River. Having withstood the test of time for more than two centuries, this great monument draws hundreds of pilgrims and tourists every year. It is believed to have been built in the 18th century by Lama Ngawang Lodrey as a replica of Boudhanath stupa of Nepal and even to this day, one can see in its architectural designs the glory of its rich past. Enlivened by the beautiful rows of sacred temples and prayer-flags interwoven into a tapestry of natural scenery in the surrounding, the stupa touches every soul that comes to circumambulate it.