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Compassion in Action: Karmapa Visits Medical Facility and Monks’ Kitchen

December 17, 2010 – Bodhgaya

As usual, the medical facility this year is set up at the Nyingma Monastery, the residence for many of the monks and also a site that is accessible to the local population. Halfway across a broad courtyard, surrounded in all sides by double stories of residential rooms, are two rooms with a long veranda outside. It is here that people wait to see the Tibetan doctor, the dentist, or the doctors trained in Western medicine.

In the first room, two Tibetan doctors work in a room that is partitioned off by white sheets from the rest of the room. Outside this consultation area, filling the shelves along the walls are bulging indigo bags with Tibetan written on white labels. Some have their drawstrings closed and some open, showing the dark brown pellets, known as “rilbu” (“the round ones”, the name for pills) that come in a variety of sizes. Three assistants, one nun and two lay people, count out the prescriptions and these are given Read the rest of this article

28th Kagyu Monlam: Day Two

December 16, 2010 – Bodhgaya

SESSION ONE: SOJONG

Kyabje Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche gave the Sojong vows this morning.

Dorlob Tenga Rinpoche, Khenchen Yongzin Thrangu Rinpoche and Yonge Mingyur Rinpoche were also there to preside over the first session.

SESSION TWO: TEACHING BY THE GYALWANG KARMAPA
The King of Aspirations: The Noble Aspiration to Excellent Conduct

Their minds prepared with the sojong vows taken before daybreak under the Bodhi tree, the assembly of thousands of monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen received the nectar of Dharma from His Holiness the Gyalwang Karmapa during the day’s second session.

His Holiness began by citing a verse from the dedication of the Sutra of Golden Light, which is regularly read during the Kagyu Read the rest of this article

28th Kagyu Monlam Begins

December 15, 2010 – Bodhgaya

SESSION ONE: SOJONG

On the very first morning of the 28th Kagyu Monlam before dawn, after the Sangha of Rinpoches, Khenpos, Lamas, monks, nuns and lay devotees were seated, proceeded by a procession of monks and the sound of blaring trumpets, His Holiness arrived and took his seat below the Bodhi tree, where the previous Buddhas and all the thousand and two Buddhas of this fortunate eon will attain enlightenment.

His Holiness first met briefly with a group of Taiwanese devotees who made him offerings. Then he put on his black activity crown and, while standing before his seat, holding a white khata which was blowing gently in the wind he awaited the arrival of the precious statue of the first Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa, which has been known to speak.

As His Holiness stood there, the sound of trumpets were heard in the distance, forewarning us of its arrival. The procession of monks wearing yellow Read the rest of this article

Guru Rinpoche Empowerment

December 13, 2010 – Bodhgaya

A Blessing for Our Path of Practice

This morning there are two additions to the stage. Beneath the enthroned Dusum Khyenpa is a large statue of Guru Rinpoche, glistening in gold. He will be the focus for this morning’s empowerment, which is based on the form of Guru Rinpoche known as the Lotus of Blazing Light, (Padma Obar), found in the practices of the Embodiment of the Three Jewels. This is especially auspicious for two reasons. The first Karmapa Dusum Khyenpa, who is being celebrated this year, is considered an emanation of Guru Rinpoche. Secondly, this form of his practice is widespread throughout the Himalayan region and this year’s teachings are especially intended for people from this area.

Beneath Guru Rinpoche and sheltered in a small wooden pavilion with its roof curving gently upward is a shining statue of Atisha, wearing the red pandita hat and holding his hands in the teaching mudra. It is his Lamp for the Path to Read the rest of this article

Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment – Teachings by The Gyalwang Karmapa: Day Three

December 12, 2010 – Bodhgaya

MORNING SESSION
We Live to Benefit Beings

As usual, the lilting chant of Karma Khyenno fills the pavilion. After the Karmapa is seated on his throne, today’s long life offering is made by Khenpo Donyo and the Mirik Monastery of Bokar Rinpoche.

His Holiness begins by speaking of people who are destitute and without protection. For all of them, we should have a special compassion. We should extend it to those who are difficult to transform, who have engaged in many negative activities, and thereby brought suffering upon themselves in this and future lives. We should see all of them as a treasure and feel a particular compassion for them.

All the living beings who surround us have been our enemies, friends, or someone somewhere in between. These are the possibilities in the present and they will be so in the future. If someone is our enemy now, there is no certainty that she or he has Read the rest of this article