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Lhagong in the Tung chu valley. The pastures to the north of the town
are often the venue for horse festivals in the summer months.
The town is small,but very pleasant to be in ,some stores and restaurants scattered along the bus route,with Sally`s Kham restaurant Snowland guesthouse it serves good food and double rooms.Sally`s Kham restaurant is just 50m from the Lhagang monastery.
The full name of Lhagang Gompa is Minyag Lhagang Yongdzog Rabgi
Lhakang Tongdrol Samdribling མི་ཉག་ ལྷ་ གང་ཡོང་ ཡོང་ ཛོག་ རབ་ གི་
ལྷ་ཁང་ ཏོང་ དྲོལ་ སམ་ དྲིབ་ གླིང་. It was built in the year 652 by the
Tibetan king, Songtsen Gampo.At the time , the king built 108 temples
all over Tibet and the last one was Lhagang Gompa. It was then called
Yongdzog Rabgi Lhakang.
Lhagang Gompa is the first monastery in Kham ཁམས that was at first a monastery of the Kagyupa sect of Tibetan Buddhism and then later changed to the Sakyapa sect. It currently has 108 (more) white Chortens (stupas) མཆོད་རྟེན༏ behind the main temple and a few hundred prayer wheels མི་ཎི་འཁོར་ལོ། around the monastery.
According to locol history,one of the 108 Mahatmas from India called Huchen Karana miraculously came to Lhagang and built a Chorten (stupa) མཆོད་རྟེན༏ .A meditational deity blessed a piece of sandalwood and placed it inside the chorten. This chorten is called Drubto Chorten. Another Mahatma called Jamphel Shenyi hid treasure teachings in the earth and this caused the deities to cry out that they were very happy. Then called the place , Lha Ga, which means, ``The deities are happy``.
Eventually, the place came to be known as Lhagang and the monastery as Lhagang Gompa.
After that, many yogis and intellectuals came here. They include Gonbo,Sera Hawa, Guru Rinpoche, Bero Tsama, Yedra, Chugjyal Phagpa and four intellectuals from Minyag. Many people from India and Tibet also came here to build stupas and other holy buildings.
Lhagang Gompa is home to many special statues and images. The most importent is the Lhagang Jowo. According to history, Princess Wencheng of China arrived in Lhagang in the year 646, on her way to Lhasa. At the time , she was carrying a statue of Sakyamuni. She ordered a statue of the Lhagang Jowo to be made and placed in Lhagang. The name of the statue is Mi Drog Sung Chon or Tong Ba Don Den. Comming to worship the Lhagang Jowo is equivalant to going to Lhasa to worship the Lhasa Jowo.
Lhagang Gompa is also unique because of the special location and histiry of Lhagang. At first, Lhagang was called Tso Lung, meaning ``lake valley``. In the valley, there was a lake and a square rock in the middle of it. Sakyamuni transformed the rock, turning the lake into land and at the same time revealing the place Phagpa Chenresig (The Buddha of Compassion) then blessed the place with words of the Buddha`s teaching.Lhagang is surrounded by five holy mountains : Chenresig, Jambayang, Chana Dorje and Drolma, and to the north, the snow mountain called Zhara.
Because it is surrounded by these holy mountains, it is a special and blessed place On the northern side of the Lhagang Gompa there are a large number of different size chortens,all standing together.The number of these chortens (stupas) is said to be 108,but on counting them you`ll find there are more than that.