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Rumtek Retreatants Offer Long-Life Ceremony to the Gyalwang Karmapa



January 29, 2017 – Tergar Monastery, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
For the last five days, the first group of three-year retreatants and their retreat master from Yiong Samten Ling—the new retreat center for the Gyalwang Karmapa’s Monastery in Rumtek, Sikkim—have been performing a long-life ceremony for him. The practice, based on the Guhayasamaja Tantra, is a terma revealed by Ratna Lingpa and one of the most popular long-life practices in the Kagyu and Nyingma lineages. Its purpose was to completely pacify any obstacles to the Karmapa’s life and to bring forth the flourishing of his enlightened activity.

On the final day at 8am in the morning, the Karmapa was invited to be present for the practice, which had been taking place in the private temple of the Pavilion for the Kagyu Monlam Chenmo. Taking his seat on the throne and wearing his Read the rest of this article

Three Days of Intensive Mahakala Puja and India’s Republic Day Celebration


January 24 to 26, 2017 – Tergar Monastery, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
After the Karmapa’s talks on Mikyo Dorje’s text, the ordained sangha engaged for three days in the practice of the Extensive Text of the Activity of the Protector, compiled by the Fifteenth Karmapa, Khakhyap Dorje. Since it is of considerable length, the monks rose at 3am, gathered in the shrine hall at 3:30am, and chanted from early morning to the evening. In speaking of the practice, the Karmapa recalled, “In Tibet, the practice lasted seven days, beginning at 9 in the evening and continuing to 12 noon the next day, and then it started again. Sometimes you did not know if it were day or night.”

Taking an unusual step, the Karmapa appointed the khenpos as the chant masters, so they could learn this role. Khenpo Kelsang Nyima, Dean of the Rumtek Monastic College, became the Read the rest of this article

Studying Gampopa’s Ornament of Precious Liberation and the Karmapa’s Closing Talk


February 4, 2017 – Tergar Monastery, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
In the main shrine hall, behind the Karmapa’s brocade-covered chair is an elegant folding screen, with scrolling leafy branches and luxurious flowers in muted golds, greens, and subtle orange playing over a resonant black background. Between the screen and the Karmapa is an altar holding statues of Marpa and Milarepa on the right and left with Gampopa in the middle. His text, the Ornament of Precious Liberation, is the focus of the discussions. A butter lamp is lit before him, its light illuminating the gold in the statues and highlighting the screen behind. Set wide to the right and left are two screens, which display quotations from the monks’ reports and the charts they have made to unpack the text and make relationships clear.

This has been the setting for the study of the Read the rest of this article

The Mind Only School: A New Book and Approach


January 22, 2017 – Tergar Monastery, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
Today the Gyalwang Karmapa’s Altruism Publications released a new book in its series, Philosophical Views: Beautiful Ornaments of the Dakpo Kagyu. This volume discusses the views of the Mind Only school and was created by the Committee for Composing Manuals for the Winter Debates, which is guided by the Gyalwang Karmapa.

The Karmapa authored the introduction in which he first mentioned the three different names applied to the school, which are considered synonyms: Yogacarins (rnal ‘byor spyod pa, Yogic Practitioners), Vijnaptimatrins (rnam rig pa/tsam, followers of the Consciousness Only school), and Chittamatra (sems tsam pa, followers of the Mind Only school). The Middle Way school and the Mind Only school presented opposing views and their Read the rest of this article

Completing His Teachings, the Gyalwang Karmapa Speaks of the Chakrasamvara Empowerment


January 22, 2017 – Tergar Monastery, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
The Gyalwang Karmapa finished his teachings for the Winter Debates by giving a reading transmission of the last section of the Three Essential Points, which covered the supplementary instructions on view, meditation, and conduct. This part is long and very subtle so the Karmapa suggested that the translation be uploaded to the kagyuoffice.org site allowing everyone to read and contemplate it. Commenting on the two teachings from Tsembupa and Mitra Yogi, he said this year the teachings were mainly related to Avalokiteshvara and he hoped they had been helpful to people.

The Karmapa then spoke of the protector practice, composed by the Fifteenth Karmapa, Khakhyap Dorje, which will be performed for three days, beginning at 3am in the morning and lasting into the evening. In Tibet, the Karmapa Read the rest of this article