His Eminence Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche’s SJI Address
The Lhomon Society (LMS) was founded by Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche in 2010 and it was formally registered as a Civil Society Organization (CSO) in 2012.
Foster genuine Gross National Happiness-based development and the knowledge, principles, values, and practices required to achieve it in Samdrup Jongkhar, as a model for Bhutan and beyond.
To build prosperous, resilient, ecologically sensitive and self-reliant communities that have the courage, initiative, and wisdom to take their future in their own hands; to achieve food self-sufficiency; to enhance opportunities for local youth; and to create a genuine GNH-based educational system locally.
We understand GNH mean greater self-reliance, with communities taking responsible initiatives to improve their well being, standing confidently on their own feet, and reducing dependence on government and foreign aid. This is core to the “good governance” pillar of Gross National Happiness, and in addition it furthers the building of democratic culture in Bhutan’s new democracy, where citizens are not yet used to active community participation. SJI transmits the message that democracy means more than just voting once every few years.
The launch of SJI
The SJI launched with a three-day event from 18 to 20 December 2010, at the Chökyi Gyatso Institute in Dewathang. Chief Guest Lyonchhen Jigmi Y. Thinley, Prime Minister of Bhutan, delivered the keynote address, and resource experts Dr. Vandana Shiva, Bunker Roy, Jayakumar Chelaton and Shibu K. Nair gave presentations on organic farming, appropriate technology and zero-waste solutions during the course of the three days. About 500 SamdrupJongkhar residents that included the district’s most influential citizens, government officials, farmers and villagers attended the launch and actively participated in the discussion. The closing of the event saw a number of voluntary statements of commitment to SJI goals, denoting genuine enthusiasm for the initiative from the local population.