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National Day 2008

What a year 2008 has been for Bhutan. A unique Constitution, a brand new democracy, and a dynamic young King. As we celebrate this National Day which marks the last of the celebrations of this special and eventful year, I am overwhelmed at being a close witness to such historic events.

The Grand Chipdrel welcoming His Majesty to the National Stadium.

The Grand Chipdrel procession welcoming His Majesty to the National Stadium.

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His Majesty in Trongsa

People around the country are adding a new item to their chhoesham (altar), the spiritual heart of a Bhutanese home. This is the folder that carries the portrait of His Majesty and a commemorative Coronation coin. As Lepta, 85, from Bji Pam, said, placing the portrait on his head: “This sung-ki is a gift from my King, the gift of a lifetime.”

On December 10 and 11, thousands of people gathered in Trongsa to offer Thridar to His Majesty the King on his first visit to the dzongkhag after the Coronation. They came from every corner of Trongsa and from dzongkhags of central Bhutan to celebrate His Majesty and the royal presence with songs and dances.

Children in Merak - Eastern Bhutan..

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Gross National Happiness – Happy in Bhutan?

GNH is the expression of a system of values that defined the Bhutanese system over centuries. Today, Bhutan articulates the need to preserve such traditions and values on the premise that what we have is good and should be preserved through change.

Having opened up to so-called planned development, Bhutan is aware that rapid change will threaten all this, so it is seeking the clarity and credibility of a GNH society and a GNH economy by trying to give the concept intellectual depth and academic construction.

To say that GNH is doing fine in Bhutan would be wrong. The truth is that Bhutan is changing rapidly and society is not responding fast enough.

Children in Merak - Eastern Bhutan..

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Coronation of the King of Bhutan – His Majesty’s Coronation Address

It is with immense joy that we are gathered together on this most auspicious day. In these last 100 years the dreams and aspirations of our forefathers and the vision of our Kings have been fulfilled beyond all expectations.The wise and selfless leadership of our kings, the sacrifice and hard work of generations of Bhutanese and the special bond between the People and King have given us this unique and special nation – a jewel of the earth.

His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck inspecting the Coronation Guard of Honour.

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Coronation of the King of Bhutan – Crowning Ceremony

On the 6th of November 2008, His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck was crowned the Fifth King of Bhutan in a sacred and intimate ceremony in the Serthri Namgay Khangzang (the Supreme Golden Throne Room) in the Tashichhodzong.

Amidst the recitation of holy sutras by the monks, His Holiness the Je Khenpo raised the Raven Crown with the Tashi Khadar and handed it to His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo. The Fourth King held it until the precise moment of 8.31 AM, chosen for its auspiciousness, and then placed it gently on the head of his son, the Fifth King of Bhutan, His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck.

At that moment His Majesty ascended the Supreme Golden Throne, becoming the world’s youngest reigning monarch, in the world’s newest democracy.

 

His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Fourth King crowns His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck as the Fifth King of Bhutan.

His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Fourth King crowns His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck as the Fifth King of Bhutan.

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