Location of Likir Monastery
The monastery is located in Ladakh district, Jammu and Kashmir, Northern India, approximately 52 kilometres west of Leh. It is situated in Likir village.
History of Likir Monastery
Likir monastery was founded in the year 1065 by Lama Duwang Chosje, under the command of the fifth king of Ladakh, Lhachen Gyalpo. It underwent expansion in the 15th century under Lhawang Lodos Sangphu.
Attractions of Likir Monastery
The monastery is constructed with two assembly halls, known as Dukhangs. The assembly halls display various significant statues like the statue of Bodhisattva, Amitabha, three large statues of Sakyamuni, Maitreya and Tsong Khapa, founder of the yellow-hat sect. The Dukhangs has glass-fronted bookcases holding the Kandshur and the Thandshur. The monastery also has a rich collection of old manuscripts, notable thangka collection, old costumes and earthen pots.
The monastery has a veranda beautifully adorned with thangka paintings of the Guardians of the Four Directions and wheel of life mandala held by Yama. The walls of the monastery are decorated with paintings of the 35 Confessional Buddhas and image of Sakyamuni with two of his chiefs by his side. Another attraction of this monastery is the statue of Avalokitesvara with 1000 arms and 11 heads.
Other attractions of this monastery are the annual festival and shopping at Likir village. Dance, music, sports and food are the highlights of this festival. The festival is also popular for Cham dance. It is performed by the Lamas wearing colourful masks. And Likir village is popular for pashmina shawl, woollen clothes and apricots.
Education at Likir Monastery
The monastery currently shelters approximately 120 Buddhist monks. It has a school where around thirty students are enrolled. The school is run by The Central Institute of Buddhist Studies. The school provides education in three languages including Hindi, Sanskrit and English.