Devon County Show 2019

In all these years of living in Devon, we have not been to the show once due to various reasons. This year we decided to make an extra effort to go and fortunately managed to get time off from work. It was really good and lot to see although the weather was as usual playing its part.

Next time we need to plan it better which day to visit as the shows are different each day. Parking and events are managed so well that we didn’t have any problem.

The highlight for me was the Shetland pony racing and the magnificent shire horses. There were so many other farm animals to see including Alpacas. I love the arts and crafts stand where I could have spent all day.

Sheep
Shetland Pony Racing
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WhatsApp Hacked

 

If you use WhatsApp be sure to update the  App as it has been reported to be hacked recently. Users are strongly advised to check for updates manually through the Apple App Store on an iPhone, Google Play or similar on an Android device, the Microsoft Store on Windows Phones and the Galaxy app store on Tizen devices.

According to the Guardian news, the number of people affected is not yet known. If you haven’t received any WhatsApp voice calls or dropped calls from unknown parties then you have probably not been targeted. But if you happen to be a lawyer or work in sensitive industries and use WhatsApp, even for personal correspondence, you should be especially vigilant.

Like everything you need being online now and the threat to security, it is worrying but sadly we also cannot do without this media to connect with others. We can, however, stay safe if we are vigilant, review and update our devices for security regularly.

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Teachers Day in Bhutan – The Real Reason to Celebrate

Tashi Delek to all the teacher on the day of Teachers Day in Bhutan

As teachers day are celebrated around the world on different dates according to their importance and significance in the history of the country. Likewise, Bhutan has opted for May the 2nd to be marked as the teachers day in the country. This was the day in 1951 when the third king of Bhutan, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, was born. He was the driving force behind the modern education system in Bhutan and appropriately credited for its success and also he is known fondly by all Bhutanese as the father of modern Bhutan. He is the reason first and foremost to celebrate and dedicate this special day, as well as appreciating and displaying our gratitude to all our teachers past and present.

The third king was in many ways a visionary king and you could say the seed of democracy was already planted by him during his reign and knew that the future survival of Bhutan may depend in allowing its people to govern themselves. That wish was fulfilled by his son the fourth king of Bhutan Jigme Singye Wangchuck despite the reluctance and uproar from the public to change. Bhutan became democratic, constitutional monarchy in 2008 with a population of no more than 700,000. The fourth king like his father saw the vision of modern Bhutan to be better served by a younger and youthful monarch and handed the golden throne selflessly to his son, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, who is the current head of state in Bhutan.

The modern western education system was introduced to provide learning centres to study science, mathematics, modern farming techniques etc. whilst also preserving and promoting the monastic schools along with its culture and tradition. This was a calculated move which really accelerated the literacy and numeracy growth in Bhutan and today almost all of our youths are educated. His vision was to preserve the unique tradition and culture of Bhutan for the outside world to admire, by propagating through schools whilst also modernizing the education system.

He was a farsighted leader beyond his time to understand the future security of Bhutan. He secured Bhutan’s membership with the United Nations by becoming its 125th member in 1971. Furthermore, he made sure Bhutan’s relationship with its neighbouring countries were diversified. Today Bhutan enjoys these friendships with countries around the world and particularly with SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) nations.

Our unconditional gratitude to His late Majesty the third king Jigme Dorji Wangchuck and in celebrating this great leader’s achievements, we also pay our utmost respect to all the teachers of Bhutan past and present. Happy Teachers Day!

Tashi Delek!
Tenzin Wangdi

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The Immeasurable Four (tsemey-shi)

In Tibetan Buddhism you are encouraged to practice tsemey-shi which are the four immeasurable qualities to be aspired and these are as follow:

Kindness (jampa)

Compassion (ngingjay)

Joyful (gawa)

Equanimity (tangnom)

The Four Immeasurables Prayer in Tibetan Buddhism is recited everyday by anyone following Tibetan Buddism. The image below is the Tibetan version with  an English translation.

May all beings have happiness and the cause of happiness.
May they be free of suffering and the cause of suffering.
May they never be disassociated from the supreme happiness which is without suffering.
May they remain in the boundless equanimity, free from both attachment to close ones and rejection of others.

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Man’s Best Friend A True Story of Bobby the little Skye Terrier

Bobby the little Skye Terrier dog was the most famous dog in Edinburgh in Scotland nearly 170 years ago and his statue is in Greyfriars for everyone to see. He is as famous today as he was then. Tale of friendship between man and dog which has become a legend in Scotland which attracts visitors from all over the world.

He is known by Greyfriars Bobby and is a remarkable story and a heartwarming tale of the bond between man and his dog. He belonged to John Gray, who worked for the Edinburgh City Police as a night watchman, and the two of them had been virtually inseparable for approximately two years until John died of tuberculosis.

His master John Gray was buried in the cemetery in the Greyfriars church and there Bobby would stay by his grave guarding for the next 14 years refusing to leave his master’s side despite numerous effort by the officials and family members to evict him. His dogged effort and loyalty touched the hearts of the local residents, the people rallied round and built a shelter for Bobby and there he stayed, guarding his master until his death.

Bobby is also buried in Greyfriars Church graveyard with his own red granite headstone, just seventy five yards away from his masters grave, which reads  “Greyfriars Bobby – died 14th January 1872 – aged 16 years Let his loyalty and devotion be a lesson to us all”

People from all over the world visiting Edinburgh flock around the statue of Bobby to have their picture taken and also to touch his nose for good luck. People also leave sticks for him by his grave. This city is rich in culture and history that you could spend weeks here exploring, but the loyalty and devotion of this wee Skye Terrier touched the heart of all visitors. It definitely touched mine.

Today the story of Bobby is enjoyed by many through books and film adaptations. His legacy will live on long after we are gone. A truly remarkable tale of the loyalty, devotion, and friendship between man and his dog.

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Mind and Practice Advisory

Teachings on the nature of Mind and how we should practice, this is what his late holiness Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche said “We normally operate under the deluded assumption that everything has some sort of true, substantial reality. But when we look more carefully, we find that the phenomenal world is like a rainbow vivid and colorful, but without any tangible existence.”

Rinpoche then goes on to offer a fantastic analogy to that of the rainbow and our mind. He says when the rainbow appears as a result of various phenomenal conditions and shows us the beautiful colours that we enjoy and appreciate it so much but we also know and understand that we cannot keep them for an indefinite period. Likewise, our thoughts arise in the mind in just the same way depending on the given condition. They have no tangible reality or intrinsic existence at all. There is, therefore, no logical reason why thoughts should have so much power over us, nor any reason why we should be enslaved by them.

The mind is nothing but the thoughts which are inherently empty in its nature and once we realise that we can break free from it and the mind will no longer have the power to deceive us. To gain control over the mind, we need to be vigilant, constantly examining all our thoughts, words, and actions.

Practice equanimity and sever the ties of hope and fear, attraction and repulsion to understand that all appearances of beauty and ugly are nothing more than projections of your own mind.

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International Women’s Day 2019

Today 8th March is the day around the world marking as the International Women’s Day. So many countries in the world still don’t treat women as their equal to their male counterpart. This day should hopefully raise that awareness.

Today we are very lucky in our country Bhutan and my adopted home country England as opposed to other countries where women are treated so badly. In Bhutan, we have to give due credit to our cultural and traditional inheritance in how our society is valued morally but still a long way off to get the economic and political equality for our women. In the UK women have fought in the past to be given the right to vote and today women are still fighting to be treated equally to their male counterpart at work.

Around the world, over the last several centuries women had died fighting for their rights and now we should not let their sacrifices to be forgotten. This is a fundamental right for any human being to be treated an equal either man or women. According to the research, there is still a long way to go to achieving gender equality globally but the attitude of our society is gradually changing.

Many women around the world share the same sentiment in general that it would be better being born as a man than a woman. That is the sad reality and even some of the cultural and religious belief they hold support that view.

Support this day by respecting women as your equal. Extend the hand of friendship and make this your legacy for years to come.

Tashi Delek!

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