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Festivals of the Monpas - The Tawang Torgya

Celebrating Torgya Festival, of Arunachal Pradesh
Celebrating Torgya Festival, of Arunachal Pradesh (Credit.2775)
Torgya Festival is one of the most colorful festivals of Arunachal Pradesh. The whole festival is celebrated with very high spirit where people dance and enjoy in the rhythm of the holy music for three days. Torgya in Arunachal Pradesh reveals the true side of the tribal lifestyle, rituals and culture. This colorful and joyous festival of Torgya is very significant in Arunachal Pradesh as it celebrates the destruction of negative forces and the ushering in of prosperity, peace and good will. This festival is performed only in the Tawang Monastery, which starts with high spirit on the 28th day of the eleventh month of the lunar calendar and coincides with the last week of January.

Torgya Festival Rituals

Chham is a sacred choreographed dance performed by monks dressed in beautiful attires and masks with traditional loud music. This dance depicts various holy and earthly characters and is performed for three days. On the first day monks offer sacrificial cake known as Torma and offered to the fire ignited in the courtyard of the monastery accompanied by the reading of Holy Scriptures by the beating of drums.

The last day ritual of Torgya Festival worship is performed known as Wang, where an assembly is organized and every individual is then allowed to participate in the holy rituals under the guidance of the monk. A long procession at the end is taken out and the large Thangka is kept outside for public view. The Monpa tribe follows the Mahayana sect of Buddhism.