Chokling Monastery in Bir, is the ultimate destination for those seeking peace, tranquility and an interesting history lesson! This Tibetan Monastery is located in the middle of the Bir Tibetan colony, and it’s a must-visit if you’re planning a trip to Himachal Pradesh.
Prepare to be amazed by the stunning white and brightly painted monastery that will take your breath away. The colossal stupa and the captivating statue of Padmasambhava are sure to leave you in awe. The lush lawns in front of the meditation center and the colorful flags fluttering in the air make this monastery a cherished location that you don’t want to miss.
And let’s not forget about the incredible views of the surrounding mountains that you’ll get to enjoy while you’re there. You might even be lucky enough to witness some paragliders gliding through the skies since Bir landing site is just 1 km away from the monastery.
The monastery was constructed in the 1960s, after the annexation of Tibet by the People’s Republic of China, under the direction of Neten Chokling Pema Gyurme. The passageway, temple and prayer hall are just some of the parts of this impressive monastery. The monks’ quarters and a 3-year retreat center are also present in the compound.
If you’re lucky, you might get to witness the lamas perform their ritual dances, which are not to be missed if you’re interested in Tibetan culture. The Chokling Monastery is not only a beautiful place to visit but also has an intriguing history that will leave you fascinated.
The founder of the Bir Monastery, Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, has his original seat in the ancient Monastery of Tsokar in the Riwoche Province of Tibet, which is connected to the Chokling Monastery. Unfortunately, the Tsokar Monastery was destroyed by the Chinese attackers, but the Tibetans rebuilt it and it’s fully established now.
The Chokling Monastery has an interesting history too. Neten Chokling Rinpoche established the monastery after being evicted from Tibet by the Chinese attackers. He met with Captain Davidson, a retired army captain who helped him find the funding and location to establish the monastery. Sadly, Neten Chokling Rinpoche died in a car accident, but the Tibetans became even more determined to finish the construction work of the monastery. And now, the monastery is headed by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, the son of 3rd Neten Chokling Rinpoche.
So, if you’re looking for a unique and unforgettable experience, then visiting the Chokling Monastery in Bir is a must-do.