Tamu Lhochhar , the biggest cultural festival of the Mahayana sect of Buddhism is being observed by the Gurungs in different places of the country including in the Kathmandu Valley today with gaiety and fervor.
This festival is observed as the New Year festival by the people of the Tamang, Sherpa, Gurung, Magar, Thakali, Jirel, Nesyangwa, Bhote, Dura and Lepcha communities, among others.
People of these communities who are living and working abroad also celebrate this festival with merriment and exchanging New Year greetings.
The Gurungs mark this festival as Tamu Lhochhar today while the Tamangs and other communities celebrate it as Sonam Lhochhar on the day of the first day of the waxing moon in the Nepali month Magh. The Sherpas and Bhotes celebrate it as Gyalpo Lhochhar in about a month away.
On this day, the junior members of the community and family receive blessings from seniors and greet each other wishing for good health, happiness and prosperity.
As per the tradition of these communities there is a change of an epoch every 12 years and each year is symbolized by rat, oxen, tiger, rabbit, cat, vulture, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, dog and boar. The New Year is believed to be the year of sheep reports My Republica.