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 will offer free medical care to all those who need it, including a medical camp based at the Siddhartha Vihara Tourist Bungalow Complex. The camp will run from 6th – 16th January, 2014. Doctors trained in Western (allopathic) and Tibetan medicine will be available to treat patients free of charge.
The ground floor of the octagonal building has been allocated to allopathic medical care. Two Tibetan nurse practitioners perform preliminary medical checks on weight and blood pressure before patients proceed to one of 3 consultation rooms staffed by Indian allopathic doctors. A fourth room on the ground floor houses a pharmacy where patients collect their medicine, dispensed free of charge, after the consultation.
The upper floor has a dressing room, where patients can receive treatment for wounds and ulcers as well as injections, and two consultation rooms staffed by doctors of Tibetan medicine. In addition there is a pharmacy to dispense traditional Tibetan medicine.
As His Holiness has said,
For Buddhists, especially Mahayana practitioners, one of our greatest aims is to actually benefit sentient beings. It is important for us to serve and benefit all sentient beings of all groups without bias, without discriminating against who needs help on the basis of whether they are Buddhist or not, whether they are human or not, whether they are the same nationality or not, and so forth.
For that reason, I hope and pray that in the future the Kagyu Monlam will do more programs to help the public.