Namgyal Monastery is told to be
the adobe of the Tibetan spiritual leader, Dalai Lama. The monastery is
situated at McLeod Ganj which is one of the largest Tibetan temples that is
outside Tibet. The serenity and tranquility of this place attracted people from
all over the world. Even those who have different religious faith or have no
faith at all, are attracted to this temple. The Namgyal Monastery is told to be
the personal monastery of the 14th Dalai Lama so people also call it
‘Dalai Lama’s Temple’.
In the 16th century,
Namgyal Monastery was founded by the second Dalai Lama. Monks set this up to
help Dalai Lama in his religious affairs. The monks living in this monastery
practice Buddhist philosophy for the well-being of Tibet. This monastery is a
center for learning about Buddhist philosophical thoughts and traditions. The
monastery is also known as Namgyal Tantric College, which houses almost 200
monks. They practice and protect the skills of the monastery. The study of
Buddhism includes texts of Tantra and Sutra, English and Tibetan, Buddhist
Philosophy, various dances, sand mandalas, and ritual chanting.
More on Namgyal Monastery
History of Namgyal Monastery
Gyalwa Sonam Gyatso, the Third Dalai
Lama founded Namgyal Monastery in 1564. To honor the female deity Namgyalma,
the monastery was named after her in 1571. The monastery was moved to McLeod
Ganj in 1959 after the Tibetan revolt. The monastery is still in McLeod Ganj.
Even today 200 monks are present in the monastery, who practice the four main
Tibetan traditions. A branch is set up in New York in 1992 according to the
advice of the current Dalai Lama. It includes a Namgyal Monastery Institute of
The architecture of Namgyal Monastery
The external architectural part of the
monastery is not very elegantly or royally decorated but when one enters the
monastery they are filled with peace and calmness. The atmosphere of the
monastery is so serene and pure that it cleanses one’s soul and opens up their
mind. It helps one to introspect the meanings of life. The interior of this
monastery is much decorated with paintings, images, and sculptures of the Lord
Buddha and other idols of Buddhism.
The way to the monastery is not flat. People have to climb up and down to
reach the monastery. So wearing a comfortable shoe with a great grip is very
The monastery has some prohibited zones and visitors must remain silent
inside the monastery. Following the rules of the monastery is a must.
There are some parts where photography is prohibited so one must check
that before clicking any photographs.
The visitors are expected to keep the monastery clean and tidy.
How to Reach Namgyal Monastery
The monastery can be reached in two ways locally. The
first option will be hiring a cab or driving all the way up to the monastery.
Trekking to the monastery is the other option. Thus visitors can also enjoy the
beautiful nature on the way to Namgyal Monastery.