Tibetan Buddhism has more than 1300 years history,in Tibetan,China.It become a part of Tibetan life.Because of it,the festival has a strong religious color in Tibet,some have evolved into pure religious festival. May be too harsh natural environment,and too heavy labor,the people who live in the snowy Plateau,want to change their fate,they pray that God can love them,the Buddha can protect them.Festival,give opportunities and occasions for people to express to god,to Buddha,to nature.In the festival mood,people entertain gods,and entertain themselves.Tibetans are a nation of many festivals,according to Tibetan calendar,every month have festival.
Losar is the Tibetan word for “new year”.
1th Jan. In Tibetan calendar(February or March in calendar),is the most important festival once a year in Tibet.At the beginning of December,Tibetans start to prepare to new year’s stuff,especially the offerings for Buddhas’.
The first day of the New Year is the most festive day for the Tibetans. Lamas, monks and lay people working for the monastery come to the gompa at sunrise. Entire families arrive. First, the monks recite prayers for auspiciousness for over half an hour; later each participant approaches the thrones and offers gifts to the Rinpoches and receives blessings.After several days, or dancing party, or go to friend or relative’s home, drink, and celebrate the New Year, or to the nearby temple toward the Buddha, and so on, all immersed in a joyous festival atmosphere.
Saga Dawa Festival
The Saga Dawa festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the 4th Tibetan month and is one of the most important religious festivals celebrated in Tibet,the festival would last the whole month. During the festival,all people do not eat meat, not to kill animals,just worship Buddha absorbedly.According to legend, the 15th April in Tibetan calendar,the day coincides with three important events in Sakyamuni Buddha’s life namely his birth, nirvana and parinirvana (death) .Every year on this day,people in festival clothes,sing and dancing,and have a picnic together.
In Saga Dawa festival,the most spectacular is that pilgrims walk around on Linkuo road. On the fest day,the pilgrims
walk clockwise according to the fix loop line to pray.Loop is divided into three times:the inner ring is inside the
Jokhang Temple;the second ring surround the Jokhang Temple;the outer ring surround the Potala Place,Jokhang
Temple and the old city area of Lhasa.The Tibetan people and Buddhist hold prayer wheels,Recite the six-character
proverbs,as a large crowd, the scene is very spectacular.
Shoton festival(Sho Dun Festival)
Shoton festival is the traditional holiday in Tibet.Sho” means “yoghourt” and“ Dun”means“eat”in Tibetan language.
Tibetan held on 1 July each year, for four or five days in Tibetan calendar.According to the gelug sect of Tibetan Buddhism (yellow), every year for Tibetan June 15 to 30,monks are not allowed to go out no matter what the size of the temple,in order to avoid stepping on the worm.After lifting the ban on June 30, before down the hill.When the monks go down the hill,people give out of yogurt tribute,formed the Shoton.Before the 17th century,the shoton is Pure religious festivals.In the middle of 17 century, the Tibetan opera joined the performance,the shoton festival was fixed,but recreational activities are still limited outside the temple.Until the early of 18 century,Norbulingka is built as the Summer Palace of the dalai lama,the sholton activity just moved to Norbulingka,people have also been allowed into the park to view the opera.From then on, form a fixed festival ceremony.Drepung Monastery hold the “Sunning the Buddha”once a year.