Saturday, October 20, 2018

Only clean politics will give way for healthy democracy

After almost four months of vigorous battles of ideas and ideology amongst the political parties, the people of Bhutan have finally voted for change. Despite the political turbulence that we had for the past couple of months, the nation as a whole has now come together to respect the decision of the mass. This is the true spirit of a healthy democracy. Druk Nyamrub Tshogpa (DNT) has now been entrusted with the sacred responsibility of serving the king, country and the people of Bhutan for the next five years. But while we embark on another leg of our political journey, there are certainly some lessons we can take from our past experiences.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Linking positivity and negativity: the two opposite sides of human life

Life is not always rainbows and daises. When you flick through social media profiles, you would mostly see people wearing big smiles on their faces as though they have never been through the darker side of their life. But the reality is different. As human beings, we all are bound to go through numerous challenges as we move on with time. Life is not always a bed of roses as it should be. In fact, it is often tough and unfair. Nobody achieves success in life without battling through a crisis. Even the most successful, beautiful and wealthy people on this planet have their own share of problems to deal with. But if we look at life positively, the challenges that we face today all contribute to our overall development. They constantly test our patience and perseverance, and make us stronger every day. They add meaning to our experiences and give us a new life if we really have the courage and willingness to swim through them.

Friday, September 21, 2018

I have always been a lover of peace and will be so forever

Having never indulged in violence in my life, I would like to believe that I have been a peaceful person since my early childhood. My family-members and close friends might have seen me sad or desolate, but I think they have not seen me aggressive and violent so far. I don’t know whether I should call it my weakness or strength, but I have realized that I have not learned to be assertive and aggressive in my entire life. Many people who have crossed paths with me have even taken me for a ride, but I have always chosen to remain quiet and positive. I know that any retaliation would indeed do more harm than good. I am a kind of person who loves to live in harmony with everybody in the society but I have realized that things do not always happen as we wish.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The story of loss and grief in the animal world

Some weeks ago, a female dog in my office premises had lost the only puppy she had. Her pathetic cries and whines that filled the air all day and night were too painful for a human heart to process. I was told that she had even refused to eat when people brought her food. She was found wandering around the office, wailing and barking especially in the direction she had seen her puppy being taken. We had to ultimately locate and request the person who had taken the puppy to return it. The reunion instantly sparked a special glow of love and affection in the eyes of the mother-dog who had been running around for days to find her lost puppy. It was a very emotional moment for those of us who witnessed the entire scene. For those who humanize animals, it was the story of a heartbroken mother and her lost child.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The experience of publishing the first research article in the international journal

After more than a year of continued effort and dedicated team work, I and my friends have ultimately managed to publish our first research paper titled ‘Supporting Students with Disability in Schools in Bhutan: Perspectives from School Principals’ on 22nd August 2018 in the International Journal of Inclusive Education. I was very fortunate to have got the opportunity to work with a very competent team on this paper. Our group consisted of Dasho Ugyen Namgay, the Hon’ble Member of Parliament (NC) from Haa, Ms. Chokey Yangzom, a special education teacher of Changangkha Middle Secondary School, Ms. Sangay Choden, Dy. Chief Program officer of the Department of Adult and Higher Education, Ministry of Education, Mr. Karma Dorji, Senior Lecturer from Paro College of Education and me. We were first part of the Bhutanese delegation to attend the Australia Awards South and West Asia Regional Alumni Workshop on Inclusive Education in Kathmandu, Nepal in November 2016. It was during this workshop that we decided to do a research study in Bhutan to find out the impact of inclusive practices in schools with Special Educational Needs (SEN) programs. More importantly, we were blest to have the support of Prof. Suzanne Karington and Prof. Julie Nickerson from Queensland University of Technology in Australia who had been part of this project right from the beginning. Although this journey was long and winding, often zigzagging through difficult times, we have ultimately managed to catch our dream and the credit goes to all those who had been part of this journey including the two seasoned professors from Australia.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Suicide is a painful reality

Despite the nationwide efforts to nurture, support and protect our children, we continue to see young people taking their own lives every year. The recent death of a student by suicide in Thimphu has once again frozen my heart. Dying by suicide is just one part of the tragedy. What is more painful is the wound it leaves in the lives of those people left behind by it. Although I have never lost any of my family-members to suicide, I have lost a friend in 2008 after she consumed poison to put an end to some relationship problems she was having with her husband. Given how much the suicide of that friend shocked me at the time, I can only guess at the devastation those who have lost their loved ones to suicide have experienced. The pain mixed with guilt, anger and regret solidifies into a bitter lump of emotions the taste of which takes months and even years to vanish from some heads.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The value of being a Bhutanese

When we think about millions of people across the globe who are bleeding with pain every day, it gives us a special reason to be proud of being born in Bhutan where we do not even have to worry about our next meal. With the blessings of our great leaders, we have been enjoying absolute peace and harmony for centuries. Although we are literarily sandwiched between two billion people, our strength lies in our unity and it was this special communal bond that helped us survive through even some of the darkest days in our history. The selfless dedications and sacrifices of our forefathers have led to the foundation of this great nation and today, we stand proud of our past as we continue our journey forward with a spark in our eyes. Our rich cultural values, pristine environment and the wisdom of our visionary leaders are some of the blessings that justify why we should consider ourselves lucky to be born in such a country whose economic progress is strictly measured by the level of happiness and wellbeing of its citizens.