Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Bhutan - Real Estate n Nature

A visit to Bhutan feels like a visit to the abode of Gods; the majesty and grandeur of the natural surroundings eludes one to a special environment where communion with the divine is possible through contemplation, connection and meditation. One gets irresistibly drawn towards these remote and rugged Himalayan Mountains in a personal search for wisdom, inspiration, solitude and happiness.

Bhutan tucked in the Eastern Himalayas, has preserved and still richly intact, its traditional lifestyle. Rather the modern secular life is being influenced and permeated with the traditional cultural life style.

Gross National Happiness (GNH)has been the overarching development philosophy of Bhutan as the concept has guided the country’s development policies and programmes. GNH suggests that happiness is the ultimate objective of development. It recognizes that there are many dimensions to development other than those associated with Gross National Product (GNP), and that development needs to be understood as a process that seeks to maximize happiness rather than purely economic growth.

The country believes that for a holistic development of the individual and society, it is essential that development achieve a sustainable balance between the economic, social, emotional, spiritual and cultural needs of the people. This has led to the declared objective of viewing development as a continuous process towards achieving a balance between the material and intangible needs of individuals and society.

The concept reminds the country that the means must always be considered in terms of the end and, therefore, every step in material development and change must be measured and evaluated to ensure that it will lead to happiness, not just more development.

The four major areas as the main pillars of GNH:
1. Economic growth and development.
2. Preservation and promotion of cultural heritage.
3. Preservation and sustainable use of the environment.
4. And Good governance

Guided by the ideas of Gross National Happiness (GNH), Bhutan has been making steady progress in every sector toward the goal of modernization. Hydroelectric power, economically the most signification sector for Bhutan’s goal of self-sustaining development, has grown impressively. The education, social services and health sector have made great strides forward and continue to be the most important social components of the country’s development programme. The government‘s fiscal situation has been improving steadily. Progress has been made in the development of human resource and the legal infrastructure.

Bhutan the land of thunder dragon, nestled between India and Tibet, the exquisite mountain kingdom has been isolated and protected for centuries by mighty Himalayan peaks, with daily life rituals remaining sacred and the landscape is relatively undeveloped.

Tradition and Buddhism infuse every facet of life, from jingling brass bells of prayer wheels to ornate monasteries perched high above terraced rice paddies. Change is coming to Bhutan, but the country isn’t blindly adopting modern western culture. After all, Bhutan still defines prosperity by Gross National Happiness, measuring well being rather than consumption. This trip to Bhutan, provided a unique opportunity to see how the Bhutanese balance development and tradition, and it was enhanced by experienced local guides who proudly share their country’s culture with us. One finds something akin to Bhutan's wonders in the beauty of remote monasteries and in interactions with Bhutanese people.