Jambay Lhakang Drup

October 28, 2023 - November 1, 2023 Bumthang

The Jambay Lhakang Drub is a unique religious event in central Bhutan. Attendees will witness the "Tercham" (the naked dance) and the "Mewang" (fire blessing).

The event is held at Jambay Lhakang, one of the oldest temples in Bhutan. Like Kyichu Lhakang in Paro, it is one of the 108 temples built by the King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet in one day in the 7th century. The Jambay Lhakang Drub is one of the fascinating events in central Bhutan. The five-day event includes of various chams/dances; such as Tercham (the naked dance), Mewang (fire blessing), Macham, Ging Tsholing cham (dance of Earth and Sky Heroes), Zhana Cham (Black Hat Dance) and many more.

From a collection of dances performed at the event, the most significant is the Tercham or the naked dance. The naked dance is a unique dance performed by a group of naked men bare to their bones only covering their faces. It is said that the dance was first introduced by Guru Rimpoche upon requests made by the four daughters of King Sindhu Raja who were building a temple at Nabji-Korphu in Trongsa. The dance was performed to subdue the demons impeding the construction of the temple. It was later reinitiated by Terton Dorje Lingpa. 

12 men are selected from a group of emerging volunteers, however, the list of their names are kept as a secret. The dancers undertake a stern religious procedure which includes strictly refraining from sexual intercourse and bathing in water mixed with incense. After which they undergo a day-long rehearsal.