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23October2017

Theatrical Performances by Drukpa Nuns

Released in August 2013 - The nuns at Druk Gawa Khilwa Nunnery displayed wonderful theatrical performances on two much-loved parables of (1) Bodhisattva prince Drime Kunden, who sacrifices everything he has, including his wife and children, and finally even his own eyes, in the service of others, and (2) the Dakini Drowa Zangmo, encompassing early Tibetan folklore, history and the introduction of Buddhism. Support the Drukpa nuns!

In Tibetan
Format: DVD-PAL (All Region)
Total running time of DVD: 1 hour 35 minutes

Price: USD 6.99 (excluding postage, which will be calculated based on shipping address)

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Prince Drimed Kundan

Prince Drimed Kundan was one of Buddha's reincarnation, the story was based on a very famous Jataka tales, from the Buddhist scriptures Tengyur entitled "Sutra on the Crown Prince Sudhana".

A long time ago, the land of Beta was ruled by King Sakyong Drakpa. He was a very powerful king, having authority over one thousand ministers and sixty princes, and holding in his possession many rare and beautiful treasures. Amongst these were the precious wish-fulfilling gem, of which it was said that the possessor would be endowed with good fortune.

Once upon a time a Prince was born. As he came into the world he recited the words "Om Mani Padme Hung". He was named Drimed Kundan, meaning "having all purity". The Prince was very wise and he understood the nature of suffering of all beings. He always wept in anguish. The King, his father, was very wealthy and the Prince suggested that to relieve some of the suffering of the world, he would distribute his wealth in alms. The King loved his son and agreed to this idea.

The King’s ministers, however, were angry and said that the Prince should marry a rich Princess in order to acquire more wealth. It was decided that the Prince should marry Mande Zangmo, a beautiful, pure, humble and religious girl from Pemachen. The couple met and fell in love instantly. They were very happy and had three children, two sons and a daughter.

One day the Prince and his father were walking in the garden. The Prince looked sad and the King asked why he was sad. The Prince replied that it was the suffering of the continuous circle of birth, old age, disease and death that caused his anguish. The King told his son not to worry for others, who were suffering from the results of their own deeds, but to be happy in the richness of fortune. The Prince replied that if he could give away all his father’s wealth to the paupers then he would be free from misery. The King agreed out of love for his son and the Prince scattered alms upon the people of the world.

At this time, the neighboring country was ruled over by an evil, irreligious King. He wanted a special wish-fulfilling gem from King Sayang Drakpa’s treasure house. He offered half of his kingdom to any one of his subjects who could acquire this gem. One old man took up the offer and set off over the high mountains to the country of Beta. He approached the King’s palace and began to weep. The Prince came to meet the old man at the gate and said that he would grant any request the weary old man might have. The old man told the Prince a sad tale of his starving family. The Prince gave the old man many jewels. Then the old man said that his only desire was to receive the wish-fulfilling gem.

The prince did not own this gem. He explained this to the old man. This gem belonged to the King so it was impossible for the Prince to give it away. The old man protested that he had travelled far to see the Prince. He stormed out in a great rage. The Prince called the old man back and agreed to give him the wish-fulfilling gem.

One month passed, the King noticed the absence of his most precious gem. He was in a great rage as one minister told the King that it was his own son who gave this gem away as alm. The King confronted his son. He lamented the loss of his wealth and kingdom. The Prince wished that his father had less attachment to wealth. He explained that he would gladly give his children, his wife, even his own life, to any passing beggar.

The high officials sentenced the Prince to death for stealing the gem. The King changeds the sentence and decreed that the Prince and his family were to be banished for 12 years to the Demon Kingdom of Mount Hashang. The family set off and the Prince urged his wife to stay behind. He explained that he would be willing to give her and their children away to beggars. The Princess was firm that she would follow the Prince as his servant wherever he went.

They set off along the road and soon the Prince gave away all their possessions as alms. Some Brahmans stopped the Prince and asked him for alms. He replied that he had nothing to give and the Brahmans asked for the three royal children. Zangmo protested, but the children were handed over tearfully and the royal couple continued on their journey alone.

The gods Indra and Brahma wished to test the Prince’s vow of alms giving. They manifested themselves in the form of two Brahmans begging for alms. The Prince told them he had nothing to give and they asked for the Princess. The Prince knew he must fulfill his vow but felt great compassion for Zangmo, who had suffered so much. He handed her over to the Brahmans, begging her to go happily. After walking for some time, the gods revealed their true identities to the Prince, returned the Princess and promised him future happiness. The royal couple were led to an illusory city of great beauty where they were entertained for seven days. The Prince insisted that they cannot stay here so the place vanished and the couple continued their way.

At the edge of a dark forest they met a hermit with a long yellow beard. He warned them of the dangers of where they were heading, but still the couple continued. In the forest, there were many wild and ferocious animals. The Prince spoke to them with great calmness and clarity and the animals became peaceful and tamed.

The couple lived in this desolate place for 10 years. Finally, the time came for them to leave and they bid farewell to the creatures of the forest. The royal parents were reunited with their children. As they approached the kingdom of Drimed Kundan's father, a blind beggar by the roadside asked for alms. The Prince replied that he had nothing to give and the beggar implored the Prince to give his own eyes. The Prince at once drew out a knife and cut out his own eyes. Later the Prince prayed to the God and he was granted new eyes so that he could continue on his journey.

The Prince was received after 12 years absence with great joy and celebrations. The King begged forgiveness of his son and offered him the entire treasury to give as alms. The King announced that Prince Drimed Kundan as his regent. All of the people prostrated themselves before him. Under the rule of Prince Drimed Kundan the Kingdom of Beta prospered and strengthened. Drimed Kundan and Mande Zangmo eventually attained enlightenment.

Dakini Drowa Zangmo

There once was a place called Mandal Gang, which had no religion and which was rocked by fighting among the proud people who lived there. The wisdom Dakini, Yeshi Khadroma, observed this region and saw the suffering of its inhabitants. She decided to show them the path of Dharma. She was born on earth to the daughter of a pious old woman and was called Drowa Zangmo. As she grew up, the young girl taught her old parents about the Dharma and they were overjoyed to have such a wise daughter.

Ruling over the region at this time was the evil Queen called Hashang Gyalmo. Her trusted maid-servant, Zema Rago was as nasty as the Queen, and her husband, King Kala Wangpo was totally under her control. One day whilst the King is out hunting, his favorite dog went missing. The distraught king announced that the next day would be spent looking for the dog.

They arrived at a house in the woods and saw a dog's footprints leading into it. When they entered the house to interrogate the inhabitants, they found Drowa Zangmo looking incredibly beautiful in the finest clothes, displaying all the characteristics of a Wisdom Dakini. The King was so overwhelmed by this sight that he decided to marry Drowa Zangmo. He expressed his desire to her parents.

Drowa Zangmo’s ideas were different however, she had no wish to become the wife of this sinful king and considered flying to the realm of the Five Dakinis in order to escape this fate. Her parents pleaded with her not to go and to comply with the King's wishes. They reminded her that if she did not obey they would be at risk of losing their lives at the hand of the angry King. Realizing this, she reluctantly allowed herself to be married to the King.

For a while, Drowa Zangmo was quite happy. She helped the people by leading them in the way of Dharma, and under her influence, the land prospered. Soon a princess was born to Drowa Zangmo and three years later a prince was born.

One day, the maid of the evil Queen Hashang went to the top of the palace and from there she spied on Drowa Zangmo and her two children. She reported this to her Queen who was outraged to learn that her husband had taken another wife. She threatened to Drowa Zangmo and her children. To escape the wrath of the wicked Queen, Drowa Zangmo flew off to her homeland, the Land of the Dakinis. Her two children were left behind, and along with their father, the King, fell into a great depression.

Meanwhile, the evil Queen Hashang was plotting and scheming a way to kill her rival’s children. She convinced her ministers that they must drug King Kala Wangpo and they did so by means of a poisoned potion. The King, under the influence of the potion, appeared quite insane and was subsequently locked up in prison.

The Queen now had no obstacles in the way of her evil desires to kill Drowa Zangmo’s children. She pretended to be seriously ill, proclaiming that only the hearts of the Prince and Princess could cure her. Two butchers who were brothers were hired to kill the two children, but when they heard the young Prince’s pleas for compassion, they were unable to commit the murder. Instead, they brought to the Queen the hearts of two puppies. She ate them and made a remarkable recovery.

Some time later, the Queen happened to see the two children playing and she was furious that she had been tricked. This time she hired two immoral fishermen to do her evil deed, but once again, the Prince and Princess put forth such passionate pleas for mercy, that even these two hard-hearted people could kill them. So, they took the children some distance away and left them to wander alone.

The young children wandered, frightened and hungry. Luckily, their mother Drowa Zangmo was watching over them and took the form of various animals to guide them on a safe path.

Yet again, the evil Queen Hashang discovered that the Prince and Princess were not dead and resolved to get rid of them once and for all. She had the children captured and brought to her palace, where she informed them that they would be thrown into a great, black pit by two executioners. Their pleading softened the heart of one of the executioners who set the little Princess free. The other man, however was not moved and threw the Prince into the abyss.

However, in the Land of the Dakinis, Drowa Zangmo performed a miracle. She transformed herself into two eagles, one male and female. The male bird swooped down and caught the Prince on his wing. To stop him smashing on the rocks below, Drowa Zangmo plunged him into the ocean. She immediately changed her form into that of two fish, one male and one female and the male carried the young Prince to safety to the land of Pemachen. The people in the land of Pemachen revered the little Prince, and made him their King.

Back on the edge of the abyss, the distraught Princess felt no alternative but to jump after her brother. The executioner persuaded her not to, instead advising her to go to the land of Pemachen where the people would look after her. She had a long and extraordinary journey, but finally reached Pemachen and joyfully reunited with her brother.

All seemed well, but there was one final hurdle to overcome. The evil Queen Hasang mounted an enormous military attack on the land of Pemachen, deliriously determined to finally succeed in conquering the children of Drowa Zangmo. The power of the good King and the Princess was too strong, and the evil queen was finally killed by the first arrow shot from the Prince’s bow.

The young King had just one more thing to do, that was to free his father, still languishing in prison in their homeland. When they arrived at the palace, the evil queen’s servant was promptly sent into exile, and the King’s father was saved. The family was at last reunited and father and son were seated upon golden thrones. The ministers repented and asked for the King’s forgiveness. They were commanded not to commit evil deeds in the future, while the fishermen and the butchers who had saved their lives were rewarded with positions and wealth. Returning to the land of Pemachen, they celebrated grandly and lived happily for a very long time.