You are capable of more than what you think

Monday, September 16, 2013

The Beauty of Tshetshu

Being a Bhutanese, Tsechu is not a new concept to me. Yet I had never looked at it so closely until now. As a kid I always loved going to Tshechus because I got to wear new and  beautiful clothes. I loved watching the performers perform. It contented me  when I met with people whom I had not met for months and we got to sit and share our lunch together. It was fun  listening to my parents explain to me the meaning of different dances and the faces of the mask dancers. The melody of the dancers cheered me as I got an opportunity to immitate them llatter infront of my parents  when I reached home.

Now,even as an adult  I still love Tshechus, as it brings colors and sparkle to the place. I still enjoy wearing the intricate and exquisitely designed hand  woven kira, the impeccable combination of silk wanju and the brocade tego . It adds to the beauty of the outfit.The precious stone are my favourite. As a child I was always thrilled to wear the corals and the pearls.   To these days, I cannot hide my excitement to wear it. The clothes have  dynamism to  add splendor to the ones wearing it and ones watching it. I admire the charm that Tshechu brings among people. We get to meet with people from various societal backgrounds, their language and their taste. Of course, like in the past in my village Tshechu, I do not talk to all the people and smile to all the people I see on my way. But I definitely, enjoy looking at all the people I meet on my way. I even smile to some of the people and vice-versa.
I do not  see so much of cohesiveness among people during such occasion in urban center which  is very different in the case of rural areas. Way back as a kid, I saw everyone talk to each other on their way and adults circled themselves to drink ara together.
Here is a different story, people have their own group and we have no reasons to talk to other people as it would be too strange if anyone did this.  
Nevertheless, I still love the horror that Dray Nakchung brings in me, the calm that Lha Karp assures  me. Tshechus are such a wonderful time of the year. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Voice disregarded

I always thought that our seniors and elders will always listen to our voice.  Especially, I assumed our educated seniors of present times  to understand us more than those in the past.  I always believed that Bhutan has come of the bureaucratic setting and that people are broad minded. However, the alternatives given by us is taken as a challenge by our elders/authorities. They believe that raising our concern is going against the rules. At the moment we are experiencing the extreme case where we are trying to raise our concern but everything we say is disregarded. Of course people appear to be  listening  while we talk. But the irony is they never take  in account our voice. Theoretically, they ask our opinions and suggestions but eventually they make decision of what they believe it to be true.Thats why Bhutanese youth are not confident enough in voicing out. We are always afraid that if we do so it will have implication. Yes, it has implication because if few of us have the confidence to talk, we are seen as black sheep, someone who is challenging the authority. Even if some things affect us we are never seen to have  potential to have our own prospect. We are actually seen as incapable of making our own decisions. It is seen by those bureaucratic heads  that only people in the power or elders have the solutions and capacity to makes decisions /set things right.The bureaucratic notion of people in the authority is vested deep inside which will never change in Bhutan for long. It will take years to replace them while the youth will face critical consequences. We are afraid to say things and we feel morally dejected. Now, we do not even want to speak out even if some one says so because our voice does not matter at all  for our authorities. What matters for them is their power to suppress our voice and exercise their supremacy. However, some people in the power are failing to understand that when we  speak out its not  going against them. It means we are having alternative perspectives to few things and that we are not trying to break the rules.To some of our people who say our Bhutanese youth are not confident. let me give the reason today. Its because we are never supported to speak out. If some of us manage somehow to speak out due to our inherent capacity, those few are seen as opposing and not respecting the elders/the people at higher positions.We are left with no direction. We are scared to make our own decisions now. Our elders have forced us to believe that we are lack the capability.
To teachers, do not be surprised to see your students mute the next time you enter the class. To  educators, do not get astonished to have no questions/suggestions from the students during question answer sessions. To others, do not blame us if you find some of the websites filled with harsh comments about you. We have either chosen to be anonymous or  stay silent because you have forced us to. 
People, make sure not to criticize our youth of not being confident because you see confidence in youth as challenger to your knowledge and experience. We become how you groom us. If you have  not invested in our confidence building  and eloquence then its you who have taught us that way. Remember, you have rob us of our space to voice out. Sorry for voicing out today  dear bureaucrats, it did not come out because some of you have told me to speak out. Its my innate talent!