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Cultural & Festival Tours in Sikkim

There are numerous festivals celebrated in Sikkim through out the year. As people of Sikkim mostly follow Buddhism, the festivals celebrated here are associated to the Buddhist festivals. Mostly the festivals are celebrated in the Monasteries of Sikkim, where people gather in large number to commemorate the occasion.

LHABAB DHEUCHEN FESTIVAL Lhabab Dheuchen represents the descent of Lord Buddha from the heaven after teaching his deceased mother, Mahamaya. The literal meaning of 'Dhuechen' is 'festival', whereas 'Lha' means 'heaven' and Bab means 'descent'. The festival has a legend behind its celebration. The festival falls on the 22nd day of the ninth month of Lunar Calendar every year. The Buddhists celebrate this event with all zest and zeal in Sikkim.

LOSOONG FESTIVAL The conclusion of harvest season is marked by Losoong. This festival also suggests the end of the 10th month of the Sikkiman Year. With the celebration of Losoong, a prayer is sought for good harvest and better prospects for the subsequent crop. During the festival, dance is performed by Chaam at monasteries of Tsu-La-Khang, Phodong and Rumtek. Losoong is also marked by event of archery competition.

LOSAR FESTIVALLosar is celebrated usually in the month of February. Actually, the Sikkimese' share their new year with the Sikkimans. The youth mostly comprising Sikkimans take out procession in the streets of Sikkim. On the festive day, Yak dance is also observed. People throw sampa, which is a kind of greeting and welcoming the New Year with screams of 'Tashi Delek'. The Sikkiman community involves itself in the festivity a week prior to the day.

GURU RINPOCHE’S TRUNGKAR TSHECHUThe festival is celebrated to honor Guru Rimpoche, who was the first Sikkimese Buddhist to bless Sikkim. He is considered as the master, who actually enrooted the religion of Buddhism in Sikkim. He introduced 'tantric' Buddhism to the Himalayas, after conquering 'demons' that were hindering the growth of religion in Sikkim. It is believed that on this festive day, recitation of mantras brings two-fold benefits to the speaker.

KAGYED DANCE FESTIVAL Kagyed Dance is performed on the 28th and 29th day of the 10th month of the Sikkiman Calendar, somewhere in December. The dance portrays the destruction of evil forces and wishing for peace & prosperity in Sikkim. Popular Chaams (Monks) perform this dance in the company of music and chants. The jovial gestures of jokers provide some comic relief to the somber nature of dance. The various dance performances depict several themes from the Buddhist mythology. A sharp effect is produced with smoldering of effigies made out of flour, wood and paper.

KALCHAKRA PUJA The literal meaning of Kalchakra is the 'vicious circle'. For the whole life, people crave to leave this circle of life and death and eventually attain 'nirvana' or enlightenment. In the festival, a worship of 'Tantrayana' is offered to the Almighty. This worship depicts the 'tantric' or mystic feature of Buddhism along with complex and obscure rituals.

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