We focus on the area of Bir
Bir is a noted centre for spiritual studies and meditation. Bir is also home to a Tibetan refugee settlement with several Buddhist monasteries and a large stupa.
The Tibetan Colony:
In 1966 the third Neten Chokling (1928-1973), an incarnate lama of the Nyingma lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, brought his family and a small entourage to Bir.
With the help of foreign aid Neten Chokling purchased over 200 acres of land and established a Tibetan settlement where 300 Tibetan families were given land to build houses. At this time Chokling Rinpoche also started building in Bir a new Neten monastery and disciples who had followed him into India formed its first sangha.
When the third Chokling Rinpoche died in 1973, his eldest son, Orgyen Tobgyal Rinpoche (b 1951), assumed responsibility for completing his father’s vision. The fourth Neten Chokling incarnation was born in 1973 in Bhutan and brought to Bir at a young age where the family of the third Chokling took him under their wings.
In 2004 full responsibility for Pema Ewam Chögar Gyurme Ling Monastery in Bir was passed to the fourth Neten Chokling.
Bir is located at the Tehsil (administrative subdivision) of Baijnath, in the District of Kangra in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh.
It is situated approximately 50 km (31 mi) southeast of Dharamshala at a distance of two to three hours by road. It is 14 km south of Billing, which lies on the way to the Thamsar Pass leading to Bara Bhangal.
Geographically, Bir is situated in the Joginder Nagar Valley, Dhauladhar Range of the foothills of the Indian Himalayas.