Tantric Yogi 47:00, 2005 (Ref: AS05840)


This film is an eventful and comic road trip, a kind of Tibetan Canterbury Tales – by bus, tractor and boat.

A village in eastern Tibet sets out on a cross-country pilgrimage led by its Chief Tantric Yogi (Wangdrak) to the One Hundred Thousand Gathering, which takes place only once every 60-years.

Struggling with their huge bread offering across mountain and vale, the pilgrims encounter all kinds of obstacles and arrive at the Namdzong Gathering late, where they find panic in the monastery.

The celebration commemorates the arrival of Buddhism in Tibet and the man who brought it there in the 8th century, Guru Rinpoche. It features an exciting culture and the natural beauty surrounding Tibet.

As the journey begins we are able to sense the yogi’s “economical” nature as he barters with a street vendor, ultimately refusing to pay for anything.

This foreshadows a few decision that may have caused the group to be late to the Gathering. First they refuse to pay a fee to cross a reservoir, feeling that it is extortion. Instead, they decide to drive around, running out of fuel and losing time.

Continuing on, their driver requests more money on account of a denser population of people as they near Namzong, where the Gathering takes place. Again this leads the group to opt for Option C, calling a bus, wasting more time and inevitably they have to walk part of the way to their destination.

During the walk we get some insight into Tibetan tradition after one of the pilgrims explains the belief that the more hardships you endure on your journey, the more purified your soul becomes. The yogi and his villagers eventually arrive late to the Gathering and begin to take part in the celebration.