Buddha Symbols & King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck 1/2 Rupee Bhutan Authentic Coin Money for Jewelry and Craft Making
Buddha Symbols & Jigme Dorji 1/2 Rupee Bhutan Authentic Coin Charm for Jewelry and Craft Making
Obverse: Left, Crowned Bust of Jigme Dorji Wangchuck (3rd Ruler) Life: 1929-1972. Reign: 30 March 1952 – 21 July 1972
Lettering: ། ། འ བྲུ ག ་ རྒྱ ལ ་ ཁ ཉི ས ་ པ ། ། ། ། འ ཇི ག ས ་ མེ ད ་ ད བ ང ་ ཕྱུ ག །
Reverse: Coin Divided Into 9 Sections.
Symbols in 8 segments surround Bhutanese legend in the center
Symbols (More elaborate designing compared to 1 Pice coins) (Symbols from top left going clockwise):
1) Wheel of Dharma
2) Umbrella of sovereignty
3) Golden fish of good fortune
4) Conch shell
6) Treasure vase
7) Endless knot (Emblem of endless birth)
8) Victory banner
Translation: Center Square Reads: IRON-TIGER-Year(1950)
(Coin was actually struck in 1967-68 however)
King Jigme Dorji (1952-1972)
Type Standard circulation coin
Value 1/2 Rupee (0.50)
Currency Milled coinage - Rupee (1927-1957)
Weight 5.0850 g
Diameter 24 mm
Thickness 1.8 mm
Orientation Medal alignment ↑↑
Number N# 9170
References KM# 28.1, KM# 28.2
Buddhism started as early as 4th or 6th BCE when Siddharta Gautama began to spread his teachings of suffering, nirvana, and rebirth in India. Siddharta himself was averse to accept images of himself and used many different symbols to illustrate his teachings. There are eight different auspicious symbols of Buddhism, and many say that these represent the gifts that God made to Buddha when he achieved enlightenment.
It is not known what the role of the image was in Early Buddhism, although many surviving images can be found because their symbolic or representative nature was not clearly explained in early texts. Among the earliest and most common symbols of Buddhism are the stupa, Dharma wheel, and the lotus flower. The dharma wheel, traditionally represented with eight spokes, can have a variety of meanings. It initially only meant royalty (a concept of the “Monarch of the Wheel, or Chakravatin), but started to be used in a Buddhist context on the Pillars of Ashoka during the 3rd century BC. The Dharma wheel is generally seen as referring to the historical process of teaching the buddhadharma; the eight spokes refer to the Noble Eightfold Path. The lotus, as well, can have several meanings, often referring to the inherently pure potential of the mind.
Buddhist Symbols and their meanings
The parasol or umbrella
An umbrella can protect people from the different elements, like the sun or the rain. In this context, a parasol or umbrella can mean protection from suffering and harmful forces. It can also mean the enjoyment of the cool shade it provides.
The two golden fish
In older times, the two fish were drawn to symbolize the Ganges and the Yamuna rivers. It has, through interpretation, come to mean luck and fortune. It also means the courage and fearlessness to face the ocean of sufferings and to be able to swim freely like fish through water.
The Conch shell
This large shell has been used in many countries as a traditional battle horn. In Buddhism, the white Conch shell that spirals to the right can mean the profound and joyful sound of the Dharma teachings. It is representative of the awakening disciples receive when they hear these teachings. The Conch shell can also mean the rousing of people from ignorance.
The Lotus Flower
The lotus has been used in many teachings of Buddhism to impart the true nature of all mankind. The roots of the lotus plant are stuck deep in the mud, but it still grows above murky water and blossoms into a beautiful, sweet-smelling flower. The lotus can be analogous to how we rise from our sufferings to reach enlightenment, beauty, and clarity. Different-colored lotus plants mean different things in Buddhism. White means spiritual and mental purity, pink means the traditional Buddha, purple is for mysticism, red means love and compassion, while blue means wisdom.
The Banner of Victory
This symbol represents how Buddha won over the demon Mara. This demon, in Buddhism, is synonymous with passion, lust, and pride. The Banner of Victory is used to remind people that one must win over their own pride, lust, and passions to be able to reach enlightenment.
A vase can be filled with many different things. The vase, in Buddhism, can mean the showering of health, wealth, prosperity and all the good things that come with enlightenment.
The Dharma wheel
This wheel is also called the dharma chakra or the Dhamma Chakka and is often used to represent Buddha himself. It has also universally become the symbol for Buddhism. The dharma wheel has eight spokes, which represent Buddha’s Eightfold Path.
The eternal knot
The intertwining of lines in the eternal knot is said to symbolize how everything is connected. It can also represent how religion and secular affairs, as well as compassion and wisdom, are united and connected to each other.
Jigme Dorji Wangchuck (Dzongkha: འབྲུག་རྒྱལ་པོ་ འཇིགས་མེད་རྡོ་རྗེ་དབང་ཕྱུག་མཆོག་, Wylie: jigs med rdo rje dbang phyug; 2 May 1929 – 21 July 1972) was the 3rd Druk Gyalpo of Bhutan.
He began to open Bhutan to the outside world, began modernization, and took the first step towards democratization.
Education and Royal Wedding
Jigme Dorji Wangchuck was born in 1929 in Thruepang Palace in Trongsa. At a young age, he was apprenticed in etiquette and leadership at the royal court of his father the King. Wangchuck was educated in a British manner in Kalimpong and went on study tours and stay to many foreign countries such as Scotland and Switzerland from where he drew inspiration to develop Bhutan with suitable adaptations. In 1943, he was appointed Trongsa Dronyer and then elevated as the 25th Paro Penlop in 1950, upon the death of the 24th Paro Penlop, Tshering Penjor (1902–1949). Wangchuck married Ashi Kesang Choden Wangchuck (born 1930), the daughter of Gongzim (Lord Chamberlain) Sonam Topgay Dorji (1896–1953), in 1951. The royal wedding was held in Paro Garden Palace. The following year, Wangchuck became the King after his father died in Kuenga Rabten Palace. Coronation was held in Punakha Dzong on 27 October 1952.
Father of modern Bhutan
During his 20-year reign that ended in July 1972, the fundamental reorientation of Bhutanese society began. Wangchuck not only achieved the reorganisation of society and government, but also consolidated Bhutan's sovereignty and security. He mobilised resources from the international donors as aid. Wangchuck's strategy was to broaden the source of aid by developing relationships with other countries. Bhutan joined the Colombo Plan in 1962 to obtain international aid. However, India became the main source of financial and technical assistance. He was a deft and farsighted planner in the sense that he modernised Bhutan without destabilizing its culture and tradition. Wangchuck brought modern techniques and methods to preserve and promote the culture of Bhutan, yet at the same time, he introduced Western science and technology. He was a forerunner among environmentalists in this part of the world. The Manas Sanctuary established in 1966 was one of the first in the region.
Political and social reforms
In the context of Bhutan, there were small groups who were bonded labourers. They would work on the farms of the aristocratic and prominent families. In return, they would receive food, lodging and clothes. As soon as he became the King, labourers who worked on the royal lands were made into tenants and sharecroppers instead of indentured labourers. Later, similar indentured labourers were set free in other areas of the country, especially in some parts of Eastern Bhutan, where they were concentrated. In 1953, Wangchuck, realising that hitherto the decision of the King and that of the high officials were binding on the country, wanted them to be shared. As a result, Wangchuck opened the National Assembly of Bhutan in 1953 in Punakha Dzong. For the first time, elders from different gewogs were invited to voice their concerns, ideas and solutions for the future of this country. At the same time, it was a forum for Wangchuck to share his larger vision for Bhutan in the years to come. After the National Assembly was established in 1953, the king drafted and devised a series of progressive laws for the Kingdom. The King brought out a holistic set of laws covering fundamental aspects of Bhutanese life such as land, livestock, marriage, inheritance, property and so forth. The Thrimzhung Chenmo (Supreme Law) was passed by the National Assembly in 1959. The laws are very organic, coherently interrelated within themselves and to the evolving reality and manifested his vision of law-based society. Along with the promulgation of Thrimzhung Chenmo, a mechanism to implement and enforce laws was needed. Wangchuck decided to open the judiciary, first with the appointment of Thrimpons (judges) in districts, and then finally to the High Court, which was set up in 1968. These administrative and social reforms were prior to any economic modernisation programmes. In 1955, he intensified the conversion of commodity taxes to cash taxes by assessing land for cash taxation. Cash taxes were nominal, but moving from commodity taxes to cash taxes was a radical step at that time. Apart from promulgation of better laws and tax reforms, the Royal Bhutan Army was formally established in 1963. Furthermore, the entitlements of all officials were converted from commodities to cash and new designations were given. Wangchuck established new Ministries in 1968.
Culture and education
The king paid considerable policy attention on preserving Bhutanese culture so that Bhutan could always perpetuate itself as a culturally distinct nation, in particular with a flourishing Buddhist culture.
He established Simtokha Rigzhung Lobdra (now known as the Institute of Language and Cultural Studies) in 1967, where a new breed of traditional scholars could be nurtured. He also increased the number of monks in many dratshangs. During his reign the systematic phonetic, syntax and grammatic rules of Dzongkha language were devised.
To propagate culture and traditions in schools, and to study scientific disciplines as well as humanities, the Third King established modern education on a wide spread basis. He established what were then the centres of education excellence with two public schools: Yangchenphug, in western Bhutan in 1969, and the other, Kanglung, in eastern Bhutan in 1968. An Agriculture Department was created to improve nutrition and to generate income from horticulture. The Kingdom’s free health service was also founded.
Modernising Bhutan's infrastructure for transportation, communications, education, health system and agriculture started after India was receptive enough to offer aid. India became independent in 1947, and was not in any immediate position to help Bhutan. Wangchuck officially visited India in 1954. The first Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru made a historic journey to Bhutan in September 1958. King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck then paid repeated visits to India. A year after Nehru visited Bhutan in 1958, the development of Bhutan's modern infrastructure began, with assistance from India. Although road construction started in 1959, a large scale undertaking became systematic two years later in 1961, with the commencement of the 1st Five Year Plan (FYP) that envisaged construction of 177 km of road, 108 schools, three hospitals, and 45 clinics. In 1961, motor road transport reached Thimphu. The systematic envisioning of the economic future of Bhutan through FYPs was put into practice in 1961. The idea of budgeting and programming on a five-year basis is a legacy from that period. The construction of roads expanded vigorously to the end of Jigme Dorji Wangchuck’s reign. His last visit to central Bhutan was partly to open the Zhunglam, the highway between Wangdue Phodrang and Trongsa, in 1971.
Multilateral and bilateral relations
The king's priority was to continue deepening the excellent relationship with India. The second priority was to diversify the relationship with other countries. He intended to strike close economic relationship with Bangladesh. Bhutan was the first nation after India to recognise the independence of Bangladesh. One key event his era was enabling Bhutan to join the United Nations in 1971, when it became its 125th member.