Adventure Land Nepal

Culture, religion, lethnicity in Bhutan

The Bhutanese culture is one of the oldest, most carefully guarded and well preserved cultures in the world. For the people of Bhutan realize that other than their centuries old culture and revered values, there is little else that is exclusive to their small and less developed country. In a bid to prevent their ancient customs from being influenced by the West, the Bhutanese government has made it mandatory for all Bhutanese to wear only their national dress in public.

RELIGION: -

Bhutan is the only country in the world to retain the Tantric form of Mahayana Buddhism (Drukpa Kagyu) as the official religion. The Buddhist faith has played and continues to play a fundamental role in the cultural, ethical and sociological development of Bhutan and its people. It permeates all strands of secular life, bringing with it a reverence for the land and its well being. Annual festivals (tsechus and dromches) are spiritual occasions in each district. They bring together the population and are dedicated to the Guru Rinpoche or other deities. Throughout Bhutan, stupas and chortens line the roadside commemorating places where Guru Rinpoche or another high Lama may have stopped to meditate. Prayer flags dot the hills, fluttering in the wind. They allow Bhutanese people to maintain constant communication with the heavens.


Bhutan - Ethnicity

The Drukpas form the major chunk with nearly 67% of the total population. They are of two groups. Those related to the Tibetans speak Dzongka. The other major language is Tsangla in the east with 11 different dialects. The Nepalis form 20% of the total Bhutanese people. Formerly the second largest peoples group after the Tsangla, they inhabited the southern region mostly. However, lately due to disagreements over government policies they have moved back to Nepal, their country of origin. Indians, Tibetans, Sikkimese, Sherpas, etc., form the remaining 13% of the population.

The unity of the Bhutanese people and independence of the country is under control of the state religion, Buddhism. There is very limited religious freedom, as government and social pressure do not allow for public expressions of other faiths.

Buddhism is followed by 70% of the population, while Hinduism is practiced by 25%. The rest are either Muslims or Christians.

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