December, 10, 2016 – Sherabling Monastery, Baijnath, Himachal Pradesh, India
Today’s events took place in the vast shrine hall of the new shedra (monastic college), which was inaugurated in 2015 and provides housing for 500 monks. In the center of the shrine hall, the Karmapa’s throne has been set before a radiant statue of the Buddha in preparation for the empowerment he will bestow today. The hall is bright with light that streams in through side windows and illuminates the thangkas of the Golden Garland hung on either side of the central aisle. Down this path His Holiness entered in a formal procession and took his seat in front of the altar specially set up for the empowerment. Here he preformed the preparations and then took his seat on the throne. After a formal mandala offering by Mingyur Rinpoche, the Karmapa began the empowerment, and finishing Read the rest of this article
December 9, 2106 – Upper Bhattu, Baijnath, HP, India
In the early hours of this Guru Rinpoche day, the Sangha gathered at 2am in the shrine hall to practice the Eight Chapters of the Tenth Day. “The Tenth Day” refers the month’s tenth day devoted to Guru Rinpoche, and “Eight Chapters” refers to the stages of practice, such as the preliminaries, offerings, mantra recitation, and so forth. In the Tibetan calendar, this year is the fire Monkey Year and considered very auspicious since Guru Rinpoche was born in a Monkey Year.
This terma, or rediscovered, text comes from the nyingma master Guru Chöwang. It was brought to Palpung Monastery, Situ Rinpoche’s seat in Tibet, in 1740 and reinstituted three years ago here at Sherabling in India. Guru Chöwang’s Read the rest of this article
December 8, 2016 – Upper Bhattu, Baijnath, HP, India
Since arriving in India in 2000, the Gyalwang Karmapa had waited almost 17 years to visit Kenting Tai Situ Rinpoche at his nearby monastery of Palpung Sherabling. To celebrate this special occasion, crowds had gathered in a festive mood from all parts of the Himalayan region and from abroad.
The day before His Holiness arrived, the monastery was astir with preparations. Diamond-shaped images of the 16 auspicious symbols and substances lined in bright colors the first part of the monastery road. In the middle of the road close to the main shrine hall, devotees were painting a welcome of the 8 auspicious symbols in brilliant white. The shrine hall was filled with lay people making stately flower arrangements of fragrant lilies while Read the rest of this article
November 28 to December 2, 2016 – West Kameng, Arunachal Pradesh, India
Traveling across the length of India’s Himalayas, from his temporary residence in Himachal Pradesh in the west all the way to the eastern peaks, the Gyalwang Karmapa made an historic journey to Arunachal Pradesh. For many centuries, he has had a connection with this beautiful realm of high summits and Buddhist followers: his first incarnation, Dusum Khyenpa (1110-1193), visited and founded monasteries here, and the relationship continued with the 3rd and 4th Karmapas while the last visit was made by the 9th Karmapa Wangchuk Dorje (1556-1603).
Aware of this former connection and wishing to hear his teachings, the Monpa people from the west of Arunachal requested their Chief Minister Pema Khandu to facilitate a visit by the Karmapa. Subsequently the Chief Minister Read the rest of this article
November 20, 2016 – Bir, Himachal Pradesh, India
After lunch at Dzongsar Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö Institute, the Gyalwang Karmapa and Khyapje Dzongsar Khyentse departed for the nearby Tibetan Colony of Bir. Their first stop was an exhibition of paintings in the Karma Gardri (the Karmapa’s encampment) style. Under the guidance of Kelsang Dorje from Derge, a group of seven young painters from all over Tibet had formed a new organization, called the Park for the Flourishing of the Tibetan Karma Gardri Traditional Art of Thangka Painting.
The Karmapa inaugurated their initial exhibit by signing a poster-sized letter commemorating the occasion as well as a painting of White Tara and the central thangka of the Buddha Descending from Tushita, which celebrated this very day in the Tibetan calendar. An artist himself, the Karmapa walked around the Read the rest of this article