My first gift for a girl

Since 1991, the integrated education policy was introduced in Khaling to help the visually impaired children cope with sighted people in the same learning environment. This was initiated to enable the blind children to develop relevant skills and abilities to live an independent life by interacting with sighted children. As a result of this policy, we were required to attend classes in regular schools at least three days a week. I was studying in grade II when this policy came into effect. So, I went to Khaling Primary School thrice a week to study with other sighted children. It was during this time when I first met a girl called Sonam Dema. We soon became close friends as she happened to be a relative of one of my senior friends. We soon came to the end of the academic year but once again met in grade III in the following year.
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Five reasons why our kings are divine rulers or Dharma Rajas

Photograph of His Majesty the 5th Druk Gyalpo. Image courtesy: Royal Office of Media

In a world of despots and dictators, it sounds like a fairy-tale that our beloved monarchs have ruled and guided us for years like their own children. Starting from the very day when the institution of monarchy was established in Bhutan, the sun of peace has shone over us and we have been blest with absolute harmony and prosperity throughout the golden reigns of five heriditary monarchs till today. We have always been governed with great love and compassion and we have really been proud of being blest with such divine rulers. It’s obvious that something is special about our kings. The following five reasons would justify why our monarchs are considered spiritual kings or Dharma Rajas who are always guided by Buddhist philosophies and principles. It’s this specialty that makes our kings different from tyrannous dictators who have ruled other nations for centuries.
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Everything happens for a good reason

Once upon a time in a remote village, there lived a young man. He grew vegetables and fruits for his livelihood. One day while wandering across his vegetable garden, he noticed that some of his pumpkins were lying on the ground as the vine holding them could no longer bear them up. He put some extra support to the vine in order to lift the pumpkins up from the ground. After surveying his vegetable garden, he stopped under one of his coconut trees to repose for a while.
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What I know about responding to earthquake disasters at home

The major earthquake that struck Nepal on 25th April 2015 has sent a strong message across the neighboring countries reminding us of the need to be prepared for such disasters when they struck our own home. Looking at the extent of damage on human lives and properties caused by the 7.9 magnitude earthquake in Nepal, we should understand that we cannot afford to take things for granted and relax because as experts point out, we too fall within the active seismic zone and we don’t know when will it be our turn to face it. So, it’s comforting to learn from the Kuensel article Prepared for earthquake response, the Royal Government of Bhutan has decided to take initiatives right from now to help the people of Bhutan prepare well in advance for such inevitable calamities so that we can respond to the situation more effectively.

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From the Land of Buddha to Butchers’ zone?

Photo of a buffalo crying in a slaughterhouse in Hongkong in 2011. Image curtesy: worldtruth.tv.

It’s true that deep inside our hearts, we all know that we are a Buddhist nation and that it’s against the teachings of Lord Buddha to even eat meat, forget about killing animals. Everybody knows pretty well how painfully innocent animals are slaughtered everyday for food and yet due to the cultural influences, we afford to push aside those harsh realities and enjoy our meals without even the slightest sense of guilt. I believe that if slaughterhouses had glass walls, then everybody would become a vegetarian. Just because we have not been to a slaughterhouse, we don’t realize the actual pain and torture innocent animals are forced through before they get to our refrigerator.
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Happy Mother’s Day 2015

Happy Mother's Day. Image source: Google

Today is a special day for all the mothers in the world. It’s Mothers’ Day and it is an auspicious occasion for all of us to let our own mom and our children’s mother know how special they are and how their sacrifices and love mean a lot to the family and the society at large. In many countries, children send gifts and flowers to their mothers to honor them for their immense contributions to the family and the nation as a whole. On this special occasion, I am very glad to see my own children prepare Mother’s Day greeting cards for their mom. It’s such a lovely gesture of their appreciation for her love, care and sacrifices for them. My wife is happy to know how much our children value her love and affection. She thanked them for such lovely cards and wishes.
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“I am blind but I didn’t cause the earthquake” – a heart-touching story from Nepal

Photo of earthquake rubble in Nepal. Image source: Google.

A few days after massive earthquake struck Nepal on 25th April 2015, I was listening to a live-calling show on Radio Nepal. It was close to midnight and the show was going in full swing with so many people calling in from different regions of Nepal. I think the show was hosted to give callers the opportunity to share information about their current conditions as well as to share what they feel about the tragedy. The announcer was also disseminating important information about the earthquake and updates from the Nepalese government. Suddenly, a male voice came on the line. “We have a caller again. ‘Hello!’” the announcer answered the telephone.
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Happy Teachers’ Day 2015

Happy Teachers' Day. Image source: Google.

Today as we celebrate the birth anniversary of our third king late Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, the father of modern Bhutan, it is also a special day for all of us in Bhutan to remember the divine architects of this nation’s future: our beloved teachers and acknowledge the selfless contributions and sacrifices they have made to make us what we are today. I believe teachers are like candles. They consume themselves to light up the world of others. I strongly believe that it requires a lot of passion, commitment, dedication, love and patience to become a true teacher.
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Another precious young soul of Bhutan gone forever

Photo of butter-lamps burning. God bless his poor soul!

I can’t still believe what has happened yesterday morning. It’s very sad to know that one of our active and sincere youth volunteers has taken his own life. When I first heard the news last night, my heart literarily froze with pain and grief. It’s really a tragic moment for his family, friends and all of us at the Department of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Education. Tandin was a very sincere and active volunteer who had been taking an active part in our programs and activities. He had been volunteering with us since a couple of years ago and he had helped us during so many important programs. He was studying in Motithang High School and I know he had a very bright future ahead of him. But today, it’s painful to know that he is no more with us.
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