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Gyalwang Karmapa Attends Bhutanese Cham Dance

2014.01.26
January 26, 2014

Despite his heavy teaching schedule, the Gyalwang Karmapa slipped away during the lunch break to visit the Cham dancing at the Royal Bhutanese Monastery, Druk Ngawang Thubten Chokling.  The monastery is the seat of the Shabdrung of Bhutan, and belongs to the Drukpa Kagyu tradition.

As His Holiness’ car approached, a line of leaping performers danced out to greet him, forming a unique, Bhutanese-style serbang or ceremonial procession to escort his car through the welcome gate into the monastery grounds and to the temple, where the Abbot and senior monks were waiting for him.

Entering the three-storey temple, the Karmapa first lit two butter lamps as offerings on the altar, and prostrated three times.  At the request of the Abbot, he then consecrated a new Buddha statue, before sitting down on the throne to receive a kusungthug mandala offering, presented by the abbot and senior monks, accompanied by the mother of the young incarnation of the Shabdrung.

His Holiness’ next duty was to Read the rest of this article

Celebrating Republic Day 2014

2014.01.26 Republic day

January 26, 2014

At 9.30am, during the morning tea break, His Holiness momentarily put aside his teachings on Gampopa’s Jewel Ornament of Liberation and went outside for a flag-raising ceremony to celebrate Republic Day. Hundreds of nuns, monks, and laypeople crowded after him to watch. And across India, the peoples of the world’s largest democracy celebrated its 65th Republic Day in similar ways.

On the paved path between the gated entrance to the monastery and the main shrine hall, more than a hundred young monks with their teachers lined up in straight lines and stood to attention.  Smartly kitted in khaki, Army security stood to attention, presenting arms with their automatic rifles. Indian security police, standing straight and tall, saluted. His Holiness stood and watched respectfully, as Bo Gongkar Rinpoche raised the Indian national flag. Emblazoned with Emperor Ashoka’s 24-spoke chakra wheel in navy blue, the tricolour flag —with saffron, green and white panels— Read the rest of this article

A Mandala That Brings Happiness and Benefit to Animals: Inauguration of Extended Veterinarian Camp Programme in Bodhgaya

2014.01.24

January 24, 2014

Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi was Chief Guest  at the inauguration of this new initiative  by Kagyupa International Monlam Trust aimed at  alleviating the suffering of  animals in Gaya District, Bihar,  and thereby improving  the health of the local human population too. Mrs. Gandhi has been a long-standing member of the Parliament serving as a minister in four Governments, and is renowned for her love and care for animals.  During her political career she has worked to pass important legislation, including specific measures to protect the environment, to promote social welfare and to protect the rights of animals.  She helped set up new institutions such as the National Zoo Authority and the Animal Welfare Board of India.  She also runs her own animal sanctuary in the heart of New Delhi, named in honour of her late husband, Sanjay Gandhi. This sanctuary, established in 1983, is the largest of its kind in Asia and cares for 3000 animals at any one time.

 

The ceremony opened with a speech by Dr Read the rest of this article

In Praise of the Gurus

2014.01.15
January 15, 2014 – Monlam Pavilion, Bodhgaya

Sessions 1, 2, 3

 

Although still cloudy, the land was clear of mist and fog this morning, when the gong sounded clearly across the Garchen at 3.00am, waking the monks and nuns in order to attend the full-moon day sojong for ordained sangha at 4.00am, administered by Khenpo Lodrö Dönyö Rinpoche. Laypeople began arriving at the Monlam Pavilion two hours later to receive the Mahayana Sojong vows bestowed by the Gyalwang Karmapa.

On the top tier of the stage, the great tormas rose magnificently, set against a translucent blue sky peppered with white clouds, projected on to the new screen background, installed three days ago. This screen will be used for visual effects during the Marme Monlam on 16th January, and stretches the width of the stage, concealing the painting of Mt. Kailash.

The Karmapa sat facing the congregation  on a low seat,  flanked by Gyaltsab Rinpoche and Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche. Behind, a row of Chinese-style festive banners had Read the rest of this article

Compassion in Action: Gyalwang Karmapa Inaugurates Medical Camp

20140106 medical
Siddhartha Vihara, Bodhgaya

January 6, 2014

Bright sunshine greeted His Holiness on his arrival at the Siddhartha Vihara Tourist Bungalow Complex, where he was welcomed by Nangsel Dorjee, Secretary of the Mahabodhi Temple Management Committee.  Having performed the ribbon-cutting ceremony to formally open the medical camp, His Holiness was given a tour of the facility by Tenzin Jangchub, the young man who has been responsible for organizing the facility, under the guidance of Bo-Gangkar Rinpoche and Ngodup Pelzom, the Gyalwang Karmapa’s older sister.

His Holiness toured both floors of the facility and was introduced to all the staff, greeting them warmly and thanking them for their work.  Finally, he posed with them for a group photograph.

The Kagyu Monlam Organization is a charitable organization, so one of its most important aims is to serve the public through educational, health, and environmental projects.  As part of its commitment to put compassion into action, the 31st Kagyu Monlam Read the rest of this article