The Tashilhunpo Monastery is the second biggest and second most important monastery in Tibetan Buddhism. The monastery is located in Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet. It is the traditional seat of Panchen Lama, the second most important god-king figure after the Dalai Lama. In its heyday, the monastery housed more than 4,000 monks. During China’s Cultural Revolution, many of the monks were forced to leave the monastic life. Currently, the process of being monks and the number of monks in the main monasteries is under strict control of the government.
Shigatse, Tibet, 2005