The Birth of the Muhigum Ongsimang

The Birth of the Muhigum Ongsimang Lingden  Phalgunanda

His Great Holiness

The early dawn of the 6th century witnessed the birth of Muhigum Ongshi Mang like Gautama Buddha, Hazrad Muhammed, Confucius, Laotse, Zoroster who advocated the essence of peace and toiled hard guiding the world along the path of tranquility: the world, in the same way, further witnessed the advent of such Muhigum Ongshi Mang, as and when the crisis of peace was felt.

            Nearly 60 years ago, the province of  ‘Limbuwan’ of eastern Nepal also had had an opportunity of receiving the blessings of a Prophet who would preach his religious sermons in ‘Limbuwan’ along with his disciples and devotees. He was a super human being with a dashing personality; clad in ‘Mekhli’ (long gown), with broad chest, radiant face that would emit the brightness of  ‘Divine Light’ broad and shiny forehead adorned with a small round ‘Tika’ of ‘Bibhuti’ (Ash), black and shiny cascade of hair, ‘Tulasi’s Mala’ (the string the Tulasi beads) round the neck, evenly poised sets of shiny white teeth and a pair of iron bangles on the wrists. He was a ‘Bramhachari’ (bachelor) and great saint of Kiranti Origin.

            Acording to his horoscope, he had been christened as Nardhoj Lingden (Limbu) but later on, he became famous as ‘Phalgunand Tapaswi’. Although his name and fame could not spread only throughout Nepal, he was popular in the Nepalese villages of Burma (Myanmar), Assam, Sikkim and Bhutan then.

            Ilam is a district that lies in the Far-estern part of the kingdom of Nepal. From the district headquarter of Ilam, there is a main road to Dhankuta in the west. On the way of Dhankuta from Ilam, one finds east Mahabharat lake. There is a small bazaar at an altitude of 6,000 feet in the Mahabharat Danda (hill). The bazaar is known as ‘Rabihaat’ after the name of its founder Rabikarna Rangkasu Rai who had initiated the process of ‘haat’ (Marketing) in this Naghi Danda in ‘Amawasya’ (New moon) and Purnima (Full moon) Tithi (special date) in 1920 B.S. From this Rabihaat, there is a village called Chukchinamba at a distance of 12 miles. This very village is the abode of the great Ongshi Mang Phalgunanda Tapaswi. He was born here on Kartik 25, 1942 B.S. and according to Indian (Hindu) astrological calculation; it was on Sunday, fortnight after the new moon and the great and pious mother to give birth was mother Hangsamati. His father’s name was Ansuwant Lingden (Jaganraj). Although he was Nardhoj according to his horoscope, he was, later on called Phalgunanda because of his spiritual elevation. There is an interesting episode that tells how his name was changed. After the birth of Phalgunanda’s eldest sister, eldest and second brothers many other children were also born (before Phalgunanda’s birth) but none of them survives, some died instantly or after an hour of birth. In the meantime, it was Phalgunanda’s time to come out of the womb of his mother and since the day the mother conceived him, the Lingden family had been experiencing a period of happiness and peacefulness. Nevertheless, nobody took initiative the taking care of the “would be born Baby” because they thought he, too, might not survive like previous babies. Then, on the destined day Phalgunanda was born. Unlike theprevious babies, he showed the sign of surviving more (about 3 hours), this made everybody happy but unfortunately, following some infection in the mothers breast, Phalgunanda was debarred of breast-feeding. Concequently, he was started being fed on the black goat’s milk (which had been brought home ¾ days before). Gradually, the baby started receiving the sympathy of the villagers. At that time, there was a tradition of adorning small children of the village with iron bangles and calling them by nicknames. Since baby Phalgunanda had also been given iron bangles and rings, the villagers (especially female old folks) started addressing him with the nickname of ‘Phalamsing’. Later on, the name was changed to Phalgunanda from ‘Phalamsing’.

            Among the members of Phalgunanda’s family, Lajhark was the eldest; he got married in Chukchinamba and then, went to Bhutan where he dies afterwards. The second eldest brother was Rajwant who had been to Burma (Myanmar) and served in the Gurkha Rifles Battalion.  Machina rank of haveldar ( Sergeant) and he himself was the third son and a great saint.

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