The country was originally known by many names including Lho Jong, ‘The Valleys of the South’, Lho Mon Kha Shi, ‘The Southern Mon Country of Four Approaches’, Lho Jong Men Jong, ‘The Southern Valleys of Medicinal Herbs and Lho Mon Tsenden Jong, ‘The Southern Mon Valleys where Sandlewood Grows’. Mon was a term used by the Tibetans to refer to Mongoloid, non-Buddhist peoples that populated the Southern Himalayas.
The National flag is divided diagonally into two equal halves. The upper yellow half signifies the secular power and authority of the king while the lower.saffron-orange symbolizes the practice of religion and the power of Buddhism, manifested in the tradition of Drukpa Kagyu. The dragon signifies the name and the purity of the country while the jewels in its jeweled claws stand for the wealth and perfection of the country.
The national sport is the Archery (Dha). The bow and arrow play a significant role in.many Bhutanese myths and legends; images of the gods holding a bow and arrows are considered especially favorable.
Archery was declared the national sport in 1971 when Bhutan became a member of.the United Nations. Bhutan also maintains an Olympic archery team. Archery tournaments and competitions are held throughout the country. Archery is played during religious and secular public holidays in Bhutan, local festivals (tsechu), between.public ministries and departments, and between the dzongkhag and the regional teams.
The National Emblem of Bhutan is a circle that projects a double diamond thunderbolt placed above the lotus.
There is a jewel on all sides with two dragons on the vertical sides. The thunderbolts represent the harmony between secular and religious power while the lotus symbolizes purity. The jewel signifies the sovereign power while the two dragons (male and female) represent the name of the country DrukYul or the Land of the Dragon.
The national bird is the raven. It adorns the royal crown. The raven represents the deity Gonpo Jarodongchen (raven ….headed Mahakala), one of the chief guardian deities of .Bhutan.
The national flower is the Blue Poppy (Meconopsis Grandis).
It is a delicate blue or purple tinged blossom with a white.filament. It grows to a height of 1 meter, and is found above the tree line (3500-4500 meters) on rocky mountain terrain. It was discovered in 1933 by a British Botanist, George Sherriff in a remote part of Sakteng in eastern Bhutan.
The national animal is the Takin (Burdorcas.taxicolor) that is associated with religious history and mythology. It is a very rare mammal with a thick neck and short muscular legs. It lives in groups and is found above 4000 meters on.the north- western and far north eastern parts of the country. They feed on bamboo. The adult Takin can weigh over 200 kgs.
The national tree is the cypress (Cupressus torolusa).
Cypresses are found in abundance and one may notice large cypresses near temples and monasteries. This tree is found in.the temperate climate zone, between 1800 and 3500 m. Its.capacity to survive on rugged harsh terrain is compared to bravery and simplicity.