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Karmapa Teaches on the Four Dharmas of Gampopa in New York

2015.04.11 Danang
(April 11, 2015 – Flushing, New York) On a sunny, spring Saturday morning in New York, His Holiness the Karmapa gave his second scheduled dharma talk for the tour, teaching to a sold-out audience on the “Four Dharmas of Gampopa.” The teaching came at the request of the Danang Foundation, headed by Lama Tsewang Rinpoche, who was one of the small group to escort the fourteen-year-old Karmapa over the Himalayas at the turn of the century on his flight out of Tibet and into exile in India.

Around 1,000 people gathered in an upstairs conference room at New York’s Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel, which was filled to capacity with those fortunate enough to secure tickets. Tickets for the event had sold out rapidly and many who missed out waited hopefully outside the teaching venue for a last-minute space to open up. Inside the room an image of the Buddha Akshobhya hung above the stage. The image was painted by His Holiness and reproduced in the style of a large Read the rest of this article

Karmapa in Manhattan: Poetry Reading at Latse Library

2015.04.11 Poetry at Lhatse(April 10, 2015 – New York, New York) Like many other aspects of Tibetan art and culture, Tibetan poetry has undergone significant shifts in content, form and contexts of practice since 1959. Latse Library this evening hosted an event that very much belongs to the post-1959 practice of poetry in Tibetan: a poetry reading. Tonight’s reading of Tibetan poems was only the second such event to take place in North America, although the practice is now better established in other Tibetan communities.

Many luminaries of the modern poetry movement in Tibetan were present at Latse Library this evening to read their verse before a rapt audience in this research library devoted to modern Tibetan studies. Among the eight poets reading their verse was Jangbu, a poet living in France who pioneered the use of free verse in Tibetan. With His Holiness the Karmapa listening attentively to the poets’ oral renditions of their verse, a succession of Read the rest of this article

Karmapa in Manhattan: Visiting Rubin Museum

2015.04.09 Rubin
(April 10, 2015 – New York, New York) For his very first outing on this stop in New York City, His Holiness the 17th Karmapa made an impromptu visit to the Rubin Museum of Art today. Himself an avid painter and scholar of Tibetan art, the Karmapa toured the Rubin’s current installations and was invited to a private viewing of select statues and paintings from the museum’s holdings that were not exhibited publicly, including works attributed to the 10th Karmapa, Choying Dorje.

The Rubin houses one of the most extensive collections of Tibetan art in the world, and has particularly rich holdings in thangkas painted in the Karma Gardri style associated with the Karmapa lineage. One of the major styles of Tibetan painting, the Karma Gardri style evolved out of the Great Encampment of the Karmapa (Tibetan: Read the rest of this article

Yale Arranges Private Sacred Music Concert for Karmapa

2015.04.08 Music(April 9, 2015 – New Haven, Connecticut) “Your presence here enriches the quality of our worship,” the Dean of Yale Divinity School, Gregory Sterling, told His Holiness the Karmapa as he welcomed him to the university’s Institute of Sacred Music (ISM). The Institute of Sacred Music arranged a private concert for the Karmapa, himself both a performer and a composer of sacred music in his own Buddhist tradition.

Exploring his interest in the music of other traditions is beginning to emerge as an additional theme of this university-centered trip, as His Holiness the Karmapa had operatic voice lessons in Redlands, heard a special arrangement of one of his own songs performed by a 26-person chorus and attended a spiritual open mic night at Princeton. On his last trip abroad to Germany, His Holiness had also Read the rest of this article

Karmapa’s Urban Activism: Planting Trees on the Streets of New Haven

2015.04.08 yale planting tree
(April 8, 2015 – New Haven, Connecticut) His Holiness the 17th Karmapa put on gloves, hefted a shovel and planted trees on the streets of New Haven, lending his own efforts to the nation’s growing urban ecology movement. His Holiness this morning joined a group of men rebuilding their lives after serving prison sentences, sharing with them the task of bringing new life to the streets of the city. The activity formed part of Yale’s Urban Resources Initiative (URI), which employs ex-convicts and urban teenagers to work on environmental projects across the city. As such, the program supports two major aims dear to His Holiness the Karmapa: environmental protection and social justice.

In his talks to university students across America, the Karmapa has been advocating greater awareness of our deep connectedness to one another and to Read the rest of this article