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Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel

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Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, (1594–1651) known colloquially as The Bearded Lama, was a Tibetan Buddhist lama and the unifier of Bhutan as a nation-state. In addition to unifying the various warring fiefdoms for the first time in the 1630s, he also sought a distinct Bhutanese cultural identity separate from the Tibetan culture from which it was derived.[1]


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  1. Dorji, Sangay (Dasho) (2008). The Biography of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal: Pal Drukpa Rinpoche. Kinga, Sonam (trans.). Thimphu, Bhutan: KMT Publications. ISBN 978-99936-22-40-6.