January 7, 2012 – Bodhgaya.
Following his earlier address to 8,000 newly-arrived Tibetans, the Gyalwang Karmapa yesterday received over 10,000 people from across the Himalayan region. Large delegations from Ladakh, Spiti, Manali, Kulu, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Sikkim and West Bengal, as well as from Nepal and Bhutan came seeking His Holiness the Karmapa´s blessings. After delivering a Dharma talk to the vast crowd, the Gyalwang Karmapa granted each of the 10,000 people an individual blessing.
The Gyalwang Karmapa yesterday also participated in a pan-Tibetan Buddhist prayer gathering, over which His Holiness the Dalai Lama is presiding in Bodhgaya. Along with the His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Gyalwang Karmapa, His Holiness the Sakya Trizin was also in attendance. HH Sakya Trizin and the Gyalwang Karmapa are the heads of the Sakya and Karma Kagyu orders of Tibetan Buddhism, respectively. The three are the seniormost Tibetan lamas in India, and their joint participation drew crowds so dense that movement around the Mahabodhi Stupa came to a virtual standstill as pilgrims strained for a glimpse of the heads of their faith. For the estimated 300,000 pilgrims on hand for the Kalachakra puja in Bodhgaya, the opportunity to attend prayer sessions with their most revered spiritual leaders was a moment not to be missed.
Called Non-Sectarian Prayer Gathering, or Rimé Monlam, the prayers for world peace are held at the Mahabodhi temple, at the site where Lord Buddha was enlightened two and a half millennia ago.