Bhutan is the only country in the world to have adopted
Mahayana Buddhism in its Tantric form as its official religion. The Buddhist
faith has played and continues to play a fundamental role in the cultural,
ethical and sociological development of country and its people. Monks are
held in great respect and play an active part in community life.
Influence of Tantric Buddhism
The influence of Tantric Buddhism since the mid 7th century has irrevocably
shaped Kingdom's history and destiny, and has had an indelible and
enlightening impact on the Bhutanese way of life. It affect almost
everything ; from arts and crafts to the system of government, from folk
dances to architectural style. To this day also, the importance and
relevance of Buddhism has not waned and Buddhist values and traditions still
permeates every aspect of the Bhutanese culture and ethos.
Role of Dzongs
To ensure predominance of Buddhism in the state, one person from each
family usually attends monastic school. Dzongs are the centers of
administration and governance for the entire valley. They play an important
role in maintaining the social structure of the country.
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