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Tholing Monastery

Tholing Monastery is on the bank of Xiangquan River, northwest of the Zhada County, Ngari District, Tibet. It was first built in North Song Dynasty, and it’s the first Buddhist monastery in Ngari Districk that built by Guge Kingdom. For centuries, Tholing Monastery suffered many natural damages and man destroys, while it still has many palaces and towering pagodas.
Tholing Monastery was built in 996, designed by Yixiwo the king of Guge kingdom and Buddhist scripture translation master Rinchen Sambu imitated the Samye Monastery. Tholing means flying in the sky and never fall. Due to the Guge kingdom’s vigorously advocacy of Buddhism, Tholing Monastery became the center of Buddhism at that time.
Tholing Monastery merged Indian, Nepal and local Tibetan architecture style. It’s the precious material for studying local architecture, sculpture and painting arts.

In Tibetan history, Tholing Monastery played an important role. Many celebrities’ stories are based on Tholing Monastery. It condenses Indian, Nepal and Ladakh craftsmen’s effort, and it’s the great combination of the three places’ architecture and Buddhist statues style. The completed monastery was consisted by Gaza Hall, White Hall, Eighteen Rohan Hall, Miller Buddha Hall, Dharma Temple, Atisha Hall, Rinchen Sambu Lotsawa Hall and numberless Shags and pagodas. The scale is extremely grand, and now we can hardly see the size of the original pattern through those remains and leftovers.
Tholing Monastery has three treasures. One is the elk horn. Some say Atisha brought it from India, and some say it’s from the Buddha preaching place. The second one is dentine five Buddha crown. It’s said this belonged to the first Khenpo of Tholing Monastery and spread to the posterity. Every Khenpo of Tholing Monastery will wear it during Buddhist activities. The third one is a black turning stone. There’s a foot print into the stone, inches deep. Some believe it was Atisha who left this.
The Tholing Monastery is close to Zhada County, just walking distance to the north. And it’s only 300 meter away to the Armed Forces Guest House.
Author:Will    Posted on June 17,2014
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