His Holiness offered the blessing initiation of long life to a large crowd of disciples who had gathered from all over the region, including Nepal, Bhutan, West Bengal, as well as the nearby seat in India for the Gyalwa Karmapas, in Rumtek, Sikkim, India.
His Holiness Karmapa’s Fall-Winter 2006 tour continued as His Holiness visited the Siliguri, west Bengal, area on November 16-17. The Karmapa was greeted by devotees who had waited for hours along the National Highway 31A, the main highway and artery to the Himalayan State of Sikkim which houses the renowned Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre, the main seat in India of his Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje.
His Holiness traveled to Phodang at Salugara, the venue for bestowing the Abhisheka / Initiation (Long Life Empowerment- Tsewang ) to the general public, where more than 14000 devotees from West Bengal, Sikkim, Nepal and Bhutan were gathered to receive blessings from His Holiness. Upon arrival His Holiness was first escorted to the main shrine hall in the Phodang where a Long Life Mandala Offering was made to him by representatives of the Himalayan Buddhist & Cultural Association, an organization representing members throughout the entire belt of the Himalayan Range.
The Karmapa stayed overnight at Droden Kunchab Chodey and in the early morning of the 17th, after an offering ceremony visited Sed-Gyud Buddhist Monastery, a monastery in the Gelugpa tradition. After a short visit to Men-Tsee Khang (home to Tibetan Medical and Astor Institute of the Exile Govt. of Tibet), His Holiness left for Bagdora Airport. His Holiness will stop at New Delhi for two days and then continue on to Varanasi. – Tashi Paljor and Karma Woser Rapten