Finally, a section for you to clarify your Dharma questions with Kechara’s esteemed pastors. Just post your question below and one of our pastors will provide you with an answer.

Note: This section of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche’s blog is meant for Dharma questions or questions related to Kechara and our lineage. If the question is not relevant or out of our scope, we will respectfully request you to seek an answer on a more relevant platform. Before posting your question, we would also like to suggest that you look through some of the older posts (or do a search on this blog) before you post a question as your question may have been already answered in an older post.

Browse through previous question submissions and learn from the Pastors’ answers. Click on the different page numbers or arrow buttons to view older questions.
Question asked by Ronnie

Dear Rinpoche and Pastors,

I'm studying abroad and very far away from home, seeking guidance and advice as I have no one else I can talk to about this. Please read with an open mind, I don't know where else to go for help.

I'm pregnant and it's an unplanned pregnancy. I'm stuck between keeping it or letting it go. I'm young and having a child at my age in the society we live in now would be considered taboo. The father of the child thinks I should let it go because it may cause a setback to both our careers and cause major family issues. He thinks we aren't ready to raise a child especially since we're both still in university and his parents think badly of me even though they've never met me or tried to get to know me. I'm sure no one would ever have the heart to take away a heartbeat but it seems like it isn't the right time to have a child now and if we did go through with it, the child probably won't be able to have the best things life can offer looking at where we are now in terms of finance and maturity.

I'm lost, confused and unsure what the right thing to do is now. Any advice at all would be helpful right now. Thank you so very much for taking time to read my story.

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Ronnie,

    I’m sorry to read that you are going through this situation. I can understand that this situation is tough to go through. You are always more than welcome to come here to ask questions. May I suggest that you talk to either someone in your family or your friends to help you come to an appropriate solution? This is because, what you feel, what you are going through, will change from time to time and you would need someone to talk to, someone that you can lean on through this situation you are facing. Depending on where you are in the world, professional help can also be sought to help you make a decision, which will be the best option for you seeking help.

    From a Buddhist perspective, the taking of a life is not considered a positive act, therefore those on the Buddhist path, would normally abstain taking a life if possible. However, that being said, one must always weigh the decision oneself. Everything we do in life, necessarily involves karma both positive and negative. That is why Buddhists try to overcome samsara in general.

    Your situation is complicated because you are abroad, but if possible you should really open up to someone you are close to in order to help you through making this decision on a personal basis. When you talk to someone, whom you are able to express yourself more, you may able to come to better decision that is right for you.

    There may be other options open to you if you seek help. I personally know women who have been in similar situations. One of these women, let the child go and the other went through the pregnancy and then gave the child up for adoption. You may or may not have thought of this option, but it is one that could be open to you, depending on where in the world you are. Any decision we make in life, however big or small it may seem, has far reaching consequences whether in this life, or in future lives. This is just a part and parcel of life within samsara. However, we should weigh the decisions we make clearly given the situation we are in. We cannot always do this weighing ourselves, but need to talk about our options with others we can rely on such a friends, family or professionals. You should consider doing this, which will help you greatly emotionally, and may give you the grounding you need to make the correct decision for you. I hope this helps.

Question asked by Dongho

What is a nyung ne practice? According to Lama Zopa Rinpoche, it's a purification sadhana. However, what are the instructions for this? I'm guessing it's to Chenrezig, but how does it work? Also, from what I have read, Vajrasattva practice is only for broken vows while Akshobhya is for regular misdeeds. Does that mean one has to take the Akshobhya practice to purify bad karma from this life and previous instead of Vajrasattva? As for the purification practices, are some like Vajrasattva and Chenrezig only to purify the bad karma and let it come quickly or is it to prevent it from coming? I am confused in it. As for signs, I recited a mantra of White Yangchenma that a Sakya lama, Lama Kunga Thartse Rinpoche, gave me with the Sakya visualizations I read on, and after one mala, I heard some lady call my Korean name even though no one in my neighborhood knows of my name and my family members weren't in the area. What does this mean?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Dongho,

    Thank you for your questions, it’s nice to see you back here again. Nyung Ne practice is a purification practice that centres around Chenrezig. It is a very beneficial practice that stems from a holy nun named Gelong-ma Palmo. It is a two and a half day practice that can be repeated many times over and over again to intensify the purification and build a closer relationship with Chenrezig. As well as its purification aspect, the practice is known to generate vast amount of merit, and also compassion, as the practice centres around Chenrezig, the Buddha of compassion. The practice involves taking the eight Mahayana precepts for the duration, fasting, meditating, prostrating and praying. The practice usually entails empowerment into the practice of Chenrezig, therefore the exact meditations, prayers can only be explained to those who have the empowerment.

    Vajrasattva practice is not necessarily only for repairing broken vows, etc. That’s why it is advised that you engage in the practice at the end of the day, to repair any vows that you may have broken during that day, as well as stopping any negative karma you created that day from multiplying. This would entail reciting the mantra 21 times, together with the four opponent powers. However, if you engage in this practice more intensely, it definitely has the capability to purify all sorts of karma. That is the reason why in Ngondro, or preliminary practices one engages in before tantra, the practice of 100,000 Vajrasattva mantra recitation is an integral part. You can read more about Vajrasattva and his practice here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/an-important-purification-practice.html.

    Within purification practices, some of the karma will be purified completely, so you do not feel its effects at all, but when purifying other karma you will need to feel its effects somehow. For example if you have the karma to be in a car accident and get seriously injured, and you are engaging in any practice, but especially the purification practice, since you have purified most of the karma, you will only experience being in a very minor car accident, with only very superficial injuries. Therefore, in this case, the karma has been purified to the extent that it does not affect you as much, but you still need to feel part of its effect.

    In regards to any signs that you receive which engaging in the practices given to you by one of your specific gurus, you should report the happenings to that particular guru. He will be able to give you more of an accurate answer, as it may be related to the particular practice that he gave to you. I hope this helps.

    Thank you.

Question asked by Thomas

Dear Pastors, When a serkyem set has been used so much and one is ready to get rid of it and replace it with a new one. What is a respecful mode of disposal?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Thomas,

    Thank you for your question. Your question shows that you have a lot of respect for offering items, which is very good. If possible, you should try to repair the item if within your means, and doing so make embellishments to make it a better offering item, which can still be used.

    If this is not possible, then you should dispose of the item with a good motivation. You should think that this item has been used to make offerings to the enlightened beings, but now that it is broken or unusable, you are going to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. Since it itself is not a receptacle of energies of the enlightened beings, such as a statue, tsa tsa or thangka, it does not require a special dissolution before being disposed of. However since it was used to make offerings, it still requires some form of respect when disposing, and this comes from one’s motivation and the way in which you dispose of it.

    Usually, when disposing of items in this way, make the motivation that you have used it and that it is now time to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. When you do this you can dispose of it in a respectful manner. For example, if you are going to throw it away, you do not simply open the trash can and throw it in. You wrap it up in something, like a bag or newspaper and dispose of it respectfully. Another method you can dispose of it is to recycle the object, if the material it is made from can be recycled. That way you are more conscious of the environment as well. I hope this explanation helps.

    Thank you.

Question asked by Curious

Dear pastors
In a recent youtube video something like paying respect to deceased ones, pastor Nirel Patel explained that merits are like the interest and good karma is like the principal sum. So merits always regenerate themselves and hence do not get used up but good karma is like the principal sum so it gets used up.

So my question is what are practices that generate merit? And can we turn a mundane daily activity into a meritorious one? Maybe can you provide an example?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Curious,

    Thank you for your question. First, to clarify a point, in regards to good karma, you are right, it is like a principal sum in a bank account, but you take away from it when you experience something good in your life, and you add to it when you do good deeds.

    Merit on the other hand, once accrued never diminishes, therefore when something is based on merit, it is based on the energies of this never diminishing sum, which you could say is like interest. In short, the principal sum when talking about karma is always added to and subtracted from. However, when talking about merit, once you have it, there is no way to destroy it, you will always benefit from it.

    There are various ways to explain how to generate merit. I will explain a way that I find easiest to understand. In normal life, when we go about performing any sort of activity, be it ‘good’ or ‘bad’ we do so out of ignorance of the true nature of existence, and it is usually self-motivated. For example, we work our entire lives to generate monetary income, so that we have enough money, resources, and materials goods to be comfortable. This is self-motivated, but it is the accepted way the world works these days, and is part and parcel of being bound to samsaric life.

    On the other hand, the act of merit making can be categorised into three parts: i) motivation, ii) the act itself, and iii) dedication. Let’s start with motivation, when engaging in various virtuous acts, we should have the motivation that by engaging in the act, we have the motivation to alleviate the suffering of someone else, and that may we gain enlightenment so that we can benefit them in the future. The second is the act itself. The third is to dedicate the energy of the virtuous act to gaining enlightenment. These three are what make merit.

    This may be a little confusing, so let me give an example: giving help to a homeless person. Whereas in ordinary life, this is something praised as a very good deed, it does not create merit without motivation and dedication. In order for this to become merit, one must set the motivation that one is giving help to the homeless free of the eight worldly concerns, to alleviate their suffering and also making the motivation that you will achieve enlightenment for the sake of the person or people you are helping. Then after you have helped them, you dedicate the energy created to the spiritual journey towards full enlightenment to help all sentient beings, while at the same time benefiting as many sentient beings as possible on the way there. This transforms the act into not only a virtuous action but also one that generates merit.

    On the other hand, if you were to help the homeless without these, you are creating good karma, which although beneficial, keeps you bound to existence within samsara. As it is the goal of Buddhist practice to overcome the cycle of samsara, a Buddhist would want to generate merit instead of good karma. I hope this explanation helps.

    Thank you.

Question asked by D.A.

If Begtse Chan is not from Mongolia, what are his real origins or story exactly? And which lamas offer his empowerment? As for Manjushri Nagarakshasa, which lamas specifically offer his empowerment and practice?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear D.A.

    Thank you for your question. Begtse, is also known as Chamsing, or Jamsaran in Mongolian. As mentioned in an earlier sharing with someone who also asked a question about Begtse, the practiced was introduced to Tibet from India by the translator Nyen Lotsawa, and is considered one of the main protectors of the Hayagriva cycle of tantras.

    According to the scriptures that derive from the Sakya tradition, who incorporated the practice from the translators, and in which tradition Begtse became a very important protector, Begtse in a previous life was born many eons ago. In that particular life, he was born as the younger prince in a royal family. His name was Drag Gye, and his older brother’s name was Drag Den. Over time both princes developed differing religious beliefs, to the point where they could not get along with each as they both held their own religious views strongly.

    As was the custom during that time, they decided to settle their differences through logical debate, with the loser having to convert to the winner’s religion. This custom was also prevalent in ancient India, and there are many stories of such debates occurring between the great masters of the past and those of other faiths. Drag Gye lost the various debates, but ran away instead of converting to his older brother’s religion. Drag Den caught him, and tried to punish him for breaking the rules of debate and going back on his promise.

    Drag Gye told his brother that even if he was killed he would not give up his religion, however if Drag Den let him go, that in the future when Drag Den became enlightened, he would protect his teachings. With that Drag Den let him go, and gave him a set of copper armour, a stick, and a bow and arrow. Drag Den also gave Drag Gye a new name: Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po. After this incident the two brothers never saw each other again in that lifetime.

    Many lives after that Drag Den was reborn as Prince Siddharta, who eventually became enlightened and is now known as Buddha Shakyamuni. Drag Gye, or Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po, was reborn in a cemetery in the North West direction. His parents gave birth to two eggs, one was a coral-like colour and the other was an agate-like colour. These two eggs flew high into the sky and reached the heavenly realms, there they subdued the gods. Then flying back down to earth, they subdued many nagas. Eventually they even came to threaten their own parents.

    The parents petitioned the Dharma protector Ekajati for her help, who threw her own staff (khatvanga) at the eggs, and broke them apart. From the coral-like coloured egg came a ferocious man with yellow hair, he proclaimed that his name was ‘Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po’. When he emerged he was wearing a set of copper armour, wielding a stick, copper sword, and a bow and arrow. From the agate-like coloured egg came a female who was blue in colour, her teeth were like shells, she had turquoise eyebrows, and her hair was made of fire. She emerged wielding a copper knife, ritual dagger (phurba), rode a terrifying bear and wore an intricate necklace made of agate and lapis lazuli. It was then that Ekajati once again took action, and subdued them, after which they became Dharma protectors. The male figure became known as Begtse, and the female as his sister. When you propitiate Begtse, his sister is automatically included and aids practitioners as well.

    As for which lama offer his practice and empowerment, most lamas do not advertise which teachings or practice they hold. Therefore you should respectfully approach lamas and ask them if they have the practice and can bestow it, or if they know of any lamas that have the practice, depending on how much you want to practice Begtse.

    Similarly, this applies to those lamas who have the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. However, this practice is included in the Rinjung Gyatsa series of empowerments. This unique cycle of teachings, includes all 4 classes of tantric practices, and includes the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. Therefore those lamas who have received the complete transmission, and have kept their commitments for this practice, are qualified to pass this on to others.

    I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Concerned

Dear Rinpoche and pastors,
I saw Rinpoches youtube video on karma in relation to vows and inside Rinpoche mentioned that if we engage in practices without holding our vows perfectly we may end up harming those we care about and those around us.

I wonder if this is the reason why recently my dad has gotten rather negative in his thought and speech amongst other things like skipping his meals and my brother recently became rather absent minded.

I myself recently have been experiencing a feeling of heat in my eyelids while doing simple breath meditation.
I am willing to persevere through the uncomfortable eyelid sensations. But i am just worried if I am bringing harm to people I care about. And that thought has been making me consider seriously stopping meditation.
Please advice. I do breath meditation and chanting om mani padme hum. But sometimes I still accidentally kill ants or lie to people.
Please advice.

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Concerned,

    Thank you for your question. In regards to your question related to keeping vows, I do not think what His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche spoke about resembles what you or your family is going through at the moment. This is because the Buddhist practices, which rely on enlightened beings who operate from ultimate compassion, do not harm others. Since the practices are based on ultimate compassion there can only be benefit from the practices.

    What the cause of the harm or difficulties we go through is actually our accumulated negative karma. This is based on our delusions and obscurations to enlightenment. As long as we have these delusions, we will be suffering from the effects of our negative karma. That is why we as Buddhists seek to achieve enlightenment, which is a state free from all delusions and karma.

    For more information about vows, you can read here:

    Vows: The Roots of All Attainments: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/students-friends/vows-the-roots-of-all-attainments.html

    For Those Who Hold Vows: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/for-those-who-hold-vows.html

    The holding of vows is a beneficial act, because it stops you from creating negative karma, and therefore not having to suffer from the effects of that karma. When you do not keep your vows well, what happens is that you create negative karma, and allow previous negative karma to open up. This is because it is said that the cause resembles the act. Therefore if you kill someone, you create the potential karma to be killed in the future. But not only that, you also plant the imprint of killing in your mindstream, you are more than likely to engage in the act of killing in future lives. This would obviously add to the suffering that we and others go through.

    When we hold our vows well, we are become virtuous people, but when we do not, such as often telling lies, this would obviously hurt both ourselves and those around us in the end. Therefore, although vows are so beneficial, breaking them without the specific intent of breaking them, can be repaired by realising what you have done, and using the four opponent powers to repair the vows. The ability to which you can keep your vows is a gradual process. As you train yourself over time to keep to them stronger, you will be creating less and less negative karma.

    In regards to the problems you have written about, these are all due to some form of negative karma ripening. Therefore, if I may, I would like to suggest that you engage in a purification practice such as Vajrasattva (http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/an-important-purification-practice.html) or the 35 Confessional Buddhas (http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-35-confessional-buddhas.html). Coupled with this, you can engage in the combined practice of Lama Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden (http://www.dorjeshugden.org/practice/diamond-path-a-daily-sadhana-of-dorje-shugden) if you are able to. These practices are all excellent in helping to overcome these sorts of occurrences. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Questionable

Is Shugden originally from the Sakya or Gelug? I found that Shugden was in the Sakya, though I am wondering if both sects have the same practice to him and entourage. Also, if one receives a Vajrayogini empowerment from a Gelug lama, can one practice a Sakya version of Vajrayogini or Heruka?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Questionable,

    Thank you for your question. Dorje Shugden was originally practiced in the Sakya tradition, and then at a later time incorporated into the Gelug tradition. You can find out more about Dorje Shugden in the Sakya tradition here:

    The Sakya Lineage and Dorje Shugden – http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-sakya-lineage-dorje-shugden.html

    Sakya Trizin’s Dorje Shugden Prayer – http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/sakya-trizins-dorje-shugden-prayer.html

    As you can will be able to see, Dorje Shugden is slightly practiced differently. This is primarily due to the great Gelugpa master Takpu Pemavajra, whose line of incarnations are known for the ability to have pure and direct visions of Tara, as well as the ability to astral travel to other realms. Takpu Pemavajra was able to astral travel to Tushita Pure Land, and there was able to receive the initiation, practice and commentary to the practice of Dorje Shugden from Dulzin Drakpa Gyeltsen, by way of Lama Tsongkhapa. When he returned, he wrote the prayers down. Therefore as it exists today in the Gelugpa tradition the practice and prayers differs from the Sakya tradition. However Sakya prayers have been incorporated into the Gelug set of prayers as well.

    In regards to the receiving the Vajrayogini initiation in one lineage and then following the practice of the same deity from another tradition, this is not really recommended. There is a reason for this and it has to do with the following of the blessings of the lineage, which effects the efficacy of the practice, even though the two may share lineage masters in common. For example the Vajrayogini lineage in the Gelugpa lineage is traced back to early Sakya masters, and from their shares a common lineage all the way back to Vajrayogini herself. However at a certain point the two lineages do diverge, and have different lineage masters.

    During initiation of a deity, the initiating guru, plants in you the seed of enlightenment following the specific path of practice they hold, which necessarily involves methods of practice. Therefore this seed, which is your connection to the deity, and the ability for you to achieve higher spiritual attainments, is linked to the specific methods of practice.

    Similarly, the during the practice of the particular deity, you need to invoke on the lineage gurus for the practice to be effective, as the energies of the deity flow through the lineage gurus in sequence and culminates in the seed of enlightenment planted in you during initiation. This invocation and manner in which it is done, will obviously differ between the practices of both lineages.

    Another point to add, is that both lineages may explain the practices, their meaning, and even methods of practice in different ways. They will emphasize different aspects of the practice based on their way of explaining philosophy, and the sutra path. Therefore although both are valid and will lead you to the same state, which is enlightenment through the deity, they will have their differences. I hope this helps.

    Thank you.

Question asked by Lia

If the ushnisha is actually supposed to be a bump, then do we change the visualization of the top knot and replace it with a bump covered in hair or do we keep the ushnisha as the thangkas show?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Lia,

    Thank you for your follow up question. Thangkas themselves are meant to be visual aids in your meditative visualisations and or objects of veneration and the generation of merit, therefore you will see that there are different variations of the same deities, as artists follow different traditions and lineages of practice. That being said, the specific visualisation you follow should be learnt from your guru, who should be qualified in the particular tradition you are practicing.

    Generally speaking, our visualisations should follow the descriptions of the particular Buddha deity we are practicing. This would differ in most cases from their depictions in thangkas, as not every aspect of the figure can be drawn accurately.

    Therefore, if the Buddha figure we are practicing has an ushnisha, then there would be no top-knot, for example Buddha Shakyamuni has an ushnisha and not a top-knot. Therefore, to following the description of the Buddha’s body more clearly, as each and every part of the Buddha’s body has a meaning and purpose, you should not visualise Buddha Shakyamuni with a top-knot but an ushnisha.

    However the enlightened beings who manifest as bodhisattvas, such as Manjushri and Green Tara do have top knots. However, these cannot always be seen clearly in their thangka depictions, due to the fact that they are wearing crowns. Therefore if you are practicing any of these bodhisattvas, then you should visualise them with a top-knot and crown.

    In order to really know how to visualise the Buddha or bodhisattva properly, you should read their descriptions according to the lineage of practice you are following. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Dongho

I have been reading on the tunes of certain sects and would like to ask on this. From what I've read, there are certain tunes to each sect and school of certain chants. Exactly where can I find the sheet music for these percussion and horns with the chants, such as to the one for invoking Kache Marpo or Dorje Shugden? Would it be possible to use school instruments for this?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Dongho,

    Thank you for your question, it is good to see you back and asking more questions. Yes you are right, there are differences in the tunes and chants between the lineages. The differences can vary significantly between the traditions, for example the Gelugpa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism is known for its extremely deep throat singing which is very powerful and is characterised by a low, booming voice, in contrast to the other traditions. Even within a particular tradition, there can be slight variations as to the manner in which the chants and tunes are performed. For example those monasteries are which are affiliated with Gyume will have one way of throat singing, where those affiliated with Gyuto will have another.

    As far as I am aware there is no professional sheet music for the rituals, most probably because the music is actually an integral part of the ritual itself. Therefore the music, tunes, and chants are all taught at the same time the ritual and prayers are. The tunes, and use of the instruments all have specific meanings, because they are considered to be offerings to the deities in the form of sound. The monasteries would not have copies of sheet music either, because sheet music is western practice. The use of ritual music within Tibetan Buddhism is more of one based on memory.

    In the Kechara organisation, the puja team was trained in such ritual instruments at the same time they learnt the particular ritual from monks from the monastery, such as the puja of Dorje Shugden. From what I saw of the training, the musical tunes, and use of instruments was not written down but taught experientially at the same time as the chanting.

    I have not come across any other instruments being used in pujas apart from the traditional ritual instruments, because even the instruments themselves have a specific meaning. That is not say that school instruments cannot be used. This is because, as long as the offering is sincere, the Buddhas and enlightened deities will accept it, and in turn you will generate great amounts of merit. Offerings should be made to the best of our ability, therefore if you do not have access to the ritual instruments, or do not know how to play them, but you know how to play other instruments, and use these instruments as offerings to the Buddhas during pujas, the amount of merit you generate will be the same. This is because you are sincere with your offering. I hope this helps.

    Thank you.

Question asked by Kunga

Does the Gelug have Begtse a protector? If so, could you please provide a sadhana for him here?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Kunga,

    Yes the Dharma protector Begtse exists within the Gelug tradition. He is also known as Chamsing. Begtse’s practice stems from India and was introduced to Tibet and therefore Tibetan Buddhism by the translator Nyen Lotsawa. Marpa Lotsawa also practiced Begtse, and so the practice exists in the Kagyu traditions.

    This practice was eventually transmitted to Sachen Kunga Nyingpo, the first of the five patriarchs of the Sakya tradition, who were the founding fathers of that tradition. Over time the practice of Begtse was incorporated into the Gelug tradition, founded by Lama Tsongkhapa, and was notably practiced by the 1st and 2nd Dalai Lamas.

    Over time the practice gained popularity within the lineage, especially when it spread to Mongolia. There the practice became an important one within the lineage as upheld there. Begtse is also affectionately known as the Dharma protector of Mongolia, because his practice is so popular there. If I am not mistaken, there is an oracle of Begtse in Mongolia as well.

    There is a mistaken account that the practice originated around the time of the 3rd Dalai Lama, with the subjugation of a Mongolian war god, but Begtse was definitely practiced before that time in the Gelug, Kagyu and Sakya traditions. While the practice of Begtse is very effective, I have not come across the practice of Begtse in my personal practice, therefore I do not have access to the Begtse sadhana to provide to you. Instead Begtse is propitiated in prayers that incorporate many other Dharma protectors, and Begtse is also considered one of the nine protectors of the Hayagriva (Tamdrin) cycle of tantric teachings. Therefore Begtse is included in the Dharma protector sections of the Hayagriva tantras.

    Surrounding Begtse are his sister, Sing Ma, and his main minister, Le Khan Mar Po. His inner retinue comprises of eight butchers who wield copper swords in their right hands and skull-cups full of blood in their left hands. They are portrayed as naked and are very ugly. His outer retinue comprises a further twenty-one butchers, who hold copper swords in their right hands, and this time, the entrails of butchered enemies. They wear the skins humans and oxen as clothes, with ornaments made from human bone. While this may seem violent, Begtse is actually a very powerful and beneficial protector, who helps practitioners clear their obstacles and create conducive conditions for their spiritual evolution. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Azair

Venerable Rinpoche,
I am doing a study in Kalachakra Tantra and I've heard from most of the lama's too that if you practice the Kalachakra Tantra, you'll be able to take control of your next rebirth.
Ofcourse, it has been said that we will get our rebirth according to our Karma and desires but whether those dreams will get fulfilled will depend upon the actions that we take in this life. Thus, practicing the Kalachakra(till the end) after initiation will give you the opportunity to take rebirth anywhere you desire regardless of your Karma.
My question is that, is there some truth in this statement.? Does this statement hold true for other tantra practices, such as Vajrayogini Tantra, Ghuyasamaja Tantra, Heruka Tantra, etc. I would really really like to know.

Thankyou in anticipation,
regards,
Azair

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Azair,

    Thank you for your question. Yes there is truth to this statement, both from a scriptural perspective and also by example, as the great masters have shown us. This is a unique feature of all Anuttarayoga Tantras or Highest Yoga Tantras, which Kalachakra, Vajrayogini, Guhyasama and Heruka are all examples of. This category of tantric practice can actually lead a practitioner to full enlightenment in this very lifetime.

    Even if enlightenment is not reached, very high levels of attainment can be reached nonetheless. This includes the ability to take control over your next rebirth. This is primarily engaged in so that the practitioner is born in an environment where they can eventually pick up their practice and further their spiritual path to enlightenment, or in order to be born in a place where they can benefit sentient beings the most, as part of the spiritual journey over many lifetimes.

    One of the reasons such an ability is very necessary on the spiritual path, is that usual death and rebirth occurs at the mercy of ones karma, specifically what is known as the ‘throwing karma’ or the karma that dictates what sort of rebirth a person is going to take. This opens up at the time of ordinary death, which most people have no control over. During the death process, many of our disturbing emotions will arise. Whichever of these is the strongest at the point of death triggers open a latent karmic potential, which becomes the ‘throwing karma’ and dictates where we are going to take rebirth and if that life will generally be full of suffering or not. Within Anuttarayoga Tantra, one of the key points of practice is to prepare for one’s death. This is done by simulating the dying process during one’s meditations, so that one becomes familiar with it.

    At the most pivotal part of this process, one practices achieving either the rainbow body or great bliss (in the case of the father tantras); or clear light (in the case of mother tantras). The tantras themselves are not defined in terms of the gender of the central deity, but by the method used to gain enlightenment. This is either the rainbow body/great bliss (classified as male, therefore labelled ‘father’) or clear light (classified as female, therefore labelled ‘mother’). Non-dual tantras such as the Kalachakra tantra can employ either of the two methods, a mixture of both, or alternate methods.

    In the case of superior practitioners, due to the power of their practice, they can achieve either of these two methods in their current body. Since they have familiarised themselves with the dying process, and a particular method of practice, they can also achieve enlightenment during their physical death. The great Lama Tsongkhapa is said to have achieved enlightenment at the moment of physical death, using the second of these.

    For other practitioners, they may not be able to achieve this either in their meditations while they are alive, or during the death process. However because they have familiarised themselves with the dying process, they remain in complete concentration at the time of death, not allowing any disturbing emotions to arise. Due to this level of concentration, meditation and awareness during the dying process, they are able to control where they next take rebirth. This is evident in the tantric scriptures themselves, and the life stories of many masters, who can state exactly where, when and to whom they will take their next rebirth, as they are in full control of the dying and rebirth process.

    There is a type of meditation called ‘thukdam’ which has been translated into ‘death meditation’. This is a final meditation some masters choose to engage in. During this meditation, the master themselves consciously begin the physical dying process themselves, engage in the meditation of dissolving the winds into the heart centre and remain in the most pivotal part of the death process, the mind of clear light of death.

    During this point they engage in meditations, either the methods of the father or mother tantras as mentioned previously, and or consciously choose where they are to next take rebirth. They can remain in this death meditation for long periods of time, days at an end, in which their consciousness has not yet left their body, although for all intents and purposes they are dead according to medical science, e.g. they have no heartbeat. At the end of their meditation, a drop of blood will be emitted from their nostril, and their head will slump over a little. Masters who engage in this meditation usually sit in full meditation posture, and their body remain supple and soft even though they have passed away from a medical point of view.

    I hope this brief explanation helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Brad

What is the significance of offering the Seven precious emblems of royalty to the Buddhas and enlightened Dharma Protectors? What are we symbolically offering up?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Brad,

    Thank you for your question. The ‘saptaratna’ or seven precious emblems represent on the one hand the ultimate state of temporal power, and on the other hand the ultimate spiritual attainments that we can achieve. By offering these to the Buddhas, we are actually creating the causes to achieve what they represent. Therefore it is good to know the meaning of each, so we can understand what we are creating the causes for by offering them up:

    Please see below for an explanation of the seven royal emblems:

    1. The Precious Wheel: a thousand spoked wheel, representing the universal power of the Buddhas, as well as the teachings of the thousand Buddhas of our aeon. It is represented by the Dharmachakra, symbolising the ‘turning of the wheel’ or teaching of the Noble Eightfold Path. It is a symbol of a universal emperor’s spiritual and temporal power. It is also represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect mindfulness, especially that of our own mind, thoughts, delusions and afflictions.

    2. The Precious Jewel: an eight sided wish-granting gem, which fulfils all the needs of a universal emperor. This jewel has eight special qualities: it illuminates the night sky for hundreds of leagues; it is cooling when the temperature is hot and warming when the temperature is cold; it makes manifest whatever the holder wants; when thirsty it causes a fresh-water spring to appear; it has the ability to control the nagas, and other supernatural beings, as well as preventing natural disasters such as storms, floods, etc.; it gives off multi-coloured lighted which heals the various mental and emotional afflictions; it cures all illnesses; and it ensures that one dies a natural death, not an untimely one. It is a symbol of a universal emperor’s spiritual and temporal power. It is also represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect mindfulness, or perfect discrimination, so one knows what to abandon and what to keep in the mindstream during the spiritual journey to enlightenment.

    3. The Precious Queen: the most beautiful and virtuous of all women. She is described as a goddess who is the epitome of someone: with devotion; without jealousy; who is the embodiment of fertility; who works for the welfare of all beings; who possess feminine wisdom; speaks the truth; not attract to sensual pleasures or material possessions; and does not have false views. She is adored by all. She also represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect effort. This is necessary to keep meditating until one gains spiritual attainments.

    4. The Precious Minister: who has sharp intelligence, patience, and the ability to give wise counsel to the emperor. He is so attuned to the emperor that even before the emperor has spoken, the minister is already carrying out his command. He only wishes to support the Dharma, help sentient beings, and is an excellent strategist. He also represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect joy. This is also akin to the attainment of the first bodhisattva level, because you have come to an understanding of your own mind, which is like pouring ice-cold water into boiling water. The water stops boiling, as does the thoughts, projections, and delusions in the mind. He represents the path of the bodhisattva.

    5. The Precious Elephant: who has the strength of a thousand normal elephants. He is white, with the perfect features that an elephant could have. He is majestic, graceful, and gentle, but in battle is fearsome, fearless and unyielding. He communicates with the emperor through a telepathic link. He represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect adaptability. This is important, as one needs to be able to adapt to the various mental afflictions as they arise, and suitably counter them.

    6. The Precious Horse: who has all the marks of a celestial horse. Known as wind-horse, he is able to travel extremely fast, and can circumambulate the entire universe three time in just a single day. He is never fearful or startled, never makes a sound when galloping, and has extremely soft hairs on his body. He represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is single-pointed concentration. This is important because without this form of concentration, once cannot engage in the analytical meditations that lead to an understanding of emptiness, and therefore enlightenment.

    7. The Precious General: who has mastered the arts of war and always wins in battle. He wears battle armour and holds many different weapons. He tries to avoid battle, but when necessary fights, and never gives up until he has won. He is fearless, and courageous in carrying out the emperors commands and ensures the emperors army carries out their duties. He represents one of the factors of enlightenment, which is perfect equanimity. This is because he overcomes all warfare, which is akin to the battle between things were are attached to and things we have an aversion for in our minds.

    In short, what you are offering up is the highest of all temporal treasures and abilities, as well as the entire path of the Dharma. Doing so creates the causes for you to receive all of this on your spiritual journey towards enlightenment. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Grigoris

Excuse me, but I would like to ask, what does the prayer to Shangmo Dorje Putri say exactly? I can't read Tibetan, but would like to see the description that the prayer gives. I am not planning to say the prayer or make interaction(as it would be very dangerous), but would like to see what it actually says from the Tibetan text. Here's the link:

Shangmo Dorje Putri – The Bamo of Sakya

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Grigoris,

    Thank you for your question. Shangmo Dorje Putri is indeed a fascinating unenlightened Dharma protector. Unfortunately at the moment, we do not have a translated copy of the text in English that we can provide. The usual format for such texts, would include an invocation, making offerings to appease them, and then exhortations for them to perform their activities, possibly followed by thanking them for their help. One thing is for certain, due to the nature of Shangmo Dorje Putri her prayer is sure to include violent imagery, just like many other Dharma protectors, such as Achi Chokyi Drolma (who even though has a peaceful appearance, has a lot of violent imagery in her prayers). The reason behind the violent imagery is explained in the post about Achi Chokyi Drolma here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/achi-chokyi-drolma-chief-protectress-of-the-drikung-kagyu.html

Question asked by je

hindu mantras in tibetan

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Je,

    Thank you for your question. I think you are asking if there are any Hindu mantras in Tibetan. As it exists now, the primary religion of Tibet is Buddhism. In fact, the Tibetan language was specifically created by the ancient scholar Thonmi Sambhota to translate, preserve and spread the religion in Tibet. Therefore the Tibetan language is inextricably linked to Buddhism. While there may be some Hindu practices that crossed over into Tibet and were translated into Tibetan, if they still exist, they are not prevalent. In my own personal practice, I have not across Hindu mantras in the Tibetan language before.

Question asked by Lia

I just went on a pilgrimage to Bodhgaya and have had a certain "feeling". After looking even after a picture of the Buddha at the Mahabodhi temple, I went there and had a very strong feeling that is hard to describe. Is that a sign of karma being cleansed or what exactly? Also, how did the image of the Buddha meditating with the top knot hair occur? I noticed other Buddhas like Maitreya, Amitabha, and so on had this hair style while sometimes having crowns instead. Is this top knot image what the Buddha actually look like or was it different like long wild hair with a starving body? The other Buddhas like Milarepa had a starving green body and long hair while others like Padmasambhava were fancy jewelry and robes with others like Lama Tsongkhapa in a monks robes with none of them having the top knot. As for the ages of deities in visualization, what does one do if one feels rather better off with a being around the same age as the person? I noticed Manjushri is to be 16 years old in visualization, but I don't feel comfortable with that especially the 8 year old White Manjushri. Would Yamantaka, Kalarupa, or Dorje Shugden appear at a certain age? I've noticed this with a lot of Buddhas and bodhisattvas without finding an old one.

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Lia,

    Thank you for your very interesting questions. The strong feeling you had while at Bodhgaya, could be that you have a connection to practicing the Buddhadharma from previous lives. One of the benefits of going on pilgrimage to holy sites is that sometimes this can open up imprints from previous lives. Alternatively it could be that you were actually planting a strong imprint in your mindstream simply by looking at such a holy image. This may seem farfetched, but the scriptures clearly state that when you look upon the holy image of a Buddha, you plant imprints in your mind stream, to practice the Dharma and eventually attain Buddhahood in the future.

    The top knot commonly portrayed on images of the Buddhas is not actually a top knot. Rather it is one the major marks of an enlightened being. It is a very small protrusion (bump) on the crown of their head, called an ‘ushnisha’ in Sanskrit. To portray this mark in paintings and statues, the tradition developed of portraying it as a top knot. However, in reality it is not, but an artistic portrayal of the ushnisha. When the enlightened deities are portrayed as a full Buddha, such as Shakyamuni, Amitabha, etc., they will have this crown protrusion. In the case of bodhisattvas they usually wear crowns, and in the case of the enlightened gurus, they wear their own head gear, such as Lama Tsongkhapa, who wears the yellow pandit’s hat characteristic of the Gelugpa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.

    In regards to the age of the Buddhas and bodhisattvas during their visualisation, the reason why they are visualised as youthful, is because in ancient times, the age was considered the prime of a person’s life. In ancient times, a person’s life span was relatively shorter, compared to what it is today. These days we have abundant resources, food, nutrition and medical care. In ancient times, they did not, therefore their live span was shorter. They would have viewed this age as the prime age of a person’s life, when they would have had the energy of childhood and the wisdom of adulthood. The reason some deities appear youthful, is because they are showing you that enlightenment is the highest, in which you are neither bound by the ignorance of childhood, and the ailments of old age. They are showing us that the state of enlightenment is the best, free from all forms of suffering. Yamantaka and Kalarupa are not portrayed entirely as human, therefore their faces for instances would not appear youthful, but their bodies would be visualised as full of power and extremely strong, depending on the practice. Dorje Shugden in his wrathful form, would not have the same youthful appearance because his wrath would mask this. Yet, Dorje Shugden in his peaceful form would definitely be youthful.

    That being said, there are some forms of the enlightened beings in which they do appear as being old. For example Palden Lhamo, Sengdongma and Ekajati are all portrayed as women who are not youthful, but older in age. Similarly, the Brahmarupa form of Four-Faced Mahakala is also portrayed as a very dark skinned man, and in certain portrayals has white hair, showing his old age. I hope this short explanation helps. Thank you.

Question asked by spring

hi, I am a female born aug 7, 1963 7:00 am cst, new Orleans, la, usa
how can I improve my wealth luck?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Spring,

    Thank you for your question and the information. Whereas astrology can definitely provide you methods for improving your wealth luck, from a Buddhist perspective, all luck and anything that happens to you in life for that matter, is based on karma. We have all accumulated vast amounts of both positive and negative karma from previous lives and this effects what we go through in this life. When the conditions are right, then the karmic potentials open up for a particular situation to manifest in our lives, either good or bad.

    From that perspective, whether we have good wealth luck or not depends on karma. If we take this view then there are two possible ways to improve our luck in life, as well as making life as smooth as possible. These are: purifying negative karma and accumulating merits, which are the reasoning behind many of the practices in Buddhism, so that we can concentrate on our spiritual path, especially when our material needs are taken care of.

    When we engage in a particular ritual or prayer, say for example a wealth ritual, this creates the energies of purifying the negative karma that one has in relation to wealth, thereby increasing the wealth in one’s life. And second, generates merits, which we can rely upon for good things to happen in our lives.

    Within Tibetan Buddhism, there are many methods to change the wealth energies in one’s life, some of which I have listed below:

    1. Invite a wealth vase: these vases are a unique speciality of Tibetan Buddhist practice, and were originally created to attract resources for the monasteries to ensure that they had enough to survive. These wealth vases attract the energies of tremendous wealth and abundance into a person’s life. They are filled and consecrated with many holy and precious items, after which extensive rituals are performed to energise them. They are not only good for improving your wealth luck, but bless the environment, and people who are near it. Traditionally kept in the monasteries and on altars, they can also be kept in your home, office or business to bring wealth as well. Apart from this, they have a many other benefits. You can read more about them and invite one, if you would like, from here: http://www.vajrasecrets.com/wealth-vases

    2. Engage in the practice of Gyenze: this practice is well known and a very powerful method for increase wealth, lengthening one’s life and accumulating merit. Gyenze is an emanation of the Dharma protector Dorje Shugden, in an increasing form. This means that his practices is all about increase: increase of wealth, increase of life, increase of all good things. When most people need to increase their wealth luck, it’s because they are suffering from financial difficulties, job problems, bills, etc. When they have to worry about such things, they can easily get overwhelmed, and not concentrate on transforming themselves as a person, because they just don’t have the time. Gyenze’s practice is very beneficial in these cases. This is one of the special benefits on Gyenze’s practice, that he helps us with outer conditions so that we can concentrate on what really matters, transforming our mind, and living a good life. You can read more about Gyenze and his practice here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/dorje-shugden-gyenze-to-increase-life-merits-and-wealth.html

    3. Engage in the practice of Dzambala: this practice is also very well known in Tibetan Buddhism. Dzambala’s particular energies are once again all about increasing things in our lives, and he is famous for increase one’s energies of wealth. Dzambala was a student of the Buddha, who was blessed that if any one propitiated him, they would see good things in their lives, and an increase in the energies of all types of wealth. Dzambala’s practice is also very unique, because if you practice it sincerely with a good heart, you will see your own good quality of generosity increase in your life. Dzambala is all about generosity and increase. You can find the practice of Dzambala here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/sadhana-prayers.html#14

    4. Order a puja: which is a ritual prayer conducted on your behalf. These help to clear the obstacles that you are facing in your life. Kechara offers the following pujas which are very powerful, and can make a positive difference in your wealth luck. They are done by our trained puja team: Dorje Shugden puja (http://www.vajrasecrets.com/dorje-shugden-wishfulfilling-puja-fund), Gyenze puja (http://www.vajrasecrets.com/gyenze-puja-fund), and Dzambala puja (http://www.vajrasecrets.com/dzambala-puja-fund-for-wealth). Many people around the world have benefited from having sponsored these pujas for themselves and their loved one.

    I hope this helps answer your question. Thank you.

Question asked by Desperate

How does one take refuge in a guru/lama exactly? I have found a guru, except he lives very faraway from me. How does one take refuge in him? Like, take if someone were to take refuge in Lama Zopa Rinpoche or Tsem Rinpoche. How does one do that is they live faraway? Not only that, but how can one find a root guru from a past life if there is in any case?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Desperate,

    There are two ways of taking refuge with a lama. The first is undergoing a short ceremony with your guru, and the second is taking refuge in you guru from your heart. In fact, even when undergoing the ceremony, the student has to accept the guru from their heart. If you would like to formally take refuge with the guru, you should contact the guru through his Dharma centre and make a formal request, together with an offering. This is the traditional procedure of formally requesting refuge.

    However, if it is not possible for you to meet the guru in person, if you take the guru to be your teacher sincerely, from the depths of your heart, this means you have taken refuge. In fact this is the real definition of having taken refuge with your guru. It is not about an external ceremony, but about an internal conviction, that this person is your guru. Once you have done this, you should follow your guru’s teachings and advice, and practice devotion to your guru. This is because for you, the guru is the Buddha and all the other enlightened beings, as he/she teaches you the Dharma which is the method to overcome samsara and therefore suffering you may be facing.

    You can formalise doing this by setting up an altar if you don’t have one already, make extensive offerings to the best of your ability, make strong aspirations for your spiritual path, and generate the strong feeling that you have taken refuge with your Guru. You can do this, and then consider that particular teacher to be your guru.

    This internal act of taking refuge however, is not one off. It should be engaged in again and again. In fact, as part of the formal refuge commitment, practitioners are supposed to take refuge at least three times during the day and three times during the night, meaning at least six times every day. When doing so, the first refuge is actually your guru. For example in the short refuge prayer: Namo Guru Beh, Namo Buddhaya, Namo Dharmaya, Namo Sanghaya, it is the guru that comes first. So every time we recite this, we should think strongly that we are takin refuge in the guru and the three jewels. In fact the three jewels themselves are embodied in your guru.

    As for finding out and meeting your root guru from a previous life, this would depend on how close of a connection you had created with your previous life’s guru. In the case that the connection was strong, and that the conditions in this life were conducive for the connection to open up, you would meet your guru again in this life. This however is rare. Another way to find out who your root guru was, if your intention is to re-connect with that guru in this life, is to consult someone with clairvoyance based on their enlightened attainments. For example through consulting a lama who is known for their clairvoyant ability, consulting a lama known for their divination practices, or even consulting a Dharma protector in trance of an oracle such as Dorje Shugden. However if the conditions are right, and the connections you made with the guru in previous lives is strong enough, one will naturally be drawn back the particular lama. I hope this short explanation helps. Thank you.

Question asked by DAN

What are the Buddhist views of the 5 planetary deities and the 28 star deities? I found out on the Sun deity, Mars deity, Mercury goddess, Venus goddess, and Jupiter deity in Buddhism and would like to know if they are allowed to be worshiped. Since my mewa said I was connected to a war deity and a powerful spirit(I do not know who), I thought the fire god would be alright to worship with his mantra of Namah Samanta Buddhanam Om Agniye Svaha.

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Dan,

    Within the Tibetan Buddhist system of astrology, it is usually divided into 2 areas of calculations. The first is called Nagtsi, or calculations based on terms of observations of the cycles of energy and time in the universe; and the second is called Kartsi, which is based on the planetary movements in the sky.

    Since Kartsi is based on the planetary movements, it does included planetary deities and star (or rather constellation) deities. These are considered to be deities in the sense that they are part of the upper echelon of the god realms. In Buddhism however, these deities are not worshiped per se. This is because Buddhists do not take refuge in unenlightened beings, even if they are of the higher god realms. Being gods, they are still within samsara, and are therefore still bound by the same emotions that you or I would be, for example, what is known as the three poisons: ignorance, desire/attachment, and hatred/jealousy. There are however rituals which are used to appease these deities and negative astrological influences, but they are not prayed to as such.

    In regards to your Mewa and your connection with a war deity and a powerful spirit, the way to keep this connection strong so that they can provide you help in this life, is to follow advice that would have been listed in your Mewa’s explanation. These beings do not need to be worshiped in any sense, but will naturally be around you as long as you live a virtuous life.

    If you do want to engage in the worship of a deity, perhaps you should choose one of the many enlightened beings, or perhaps an enlightened Dharma protector such as Dorje Shugden. If you are practicing Buddhism, this would be the best, as it would in keeping with the Buddhist precept of only going for refuge and propitiating the enlightened beings, rather than the gods, who although extremely powerful do not have the qualities of enlightened compassion and wisdom that Buddhist practitioners seek. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by Dongho

Okay, I have been finding a root guru and have been having some problems. For one, Lama Kunga Thartse Rinpoche lives in California and will be visiting India for a whole month. However, how do I take refuge in a guru if they live faraway from an island like Hawaii? Also, can one take empowerments if the lama that provides it and the student are faraway from each other? I already felt the "cleansing water feeling" in my mind after talking to him on the phone, so I thought it was possible to take refuge through a phone. Also, if a guru is one of the heart sons of Milarepa and is a lama of the Sakya sect instead of the Kagyu, how does that work out exactly? Does the Kagyu lineage and Sakya lineage be combined together with the masters along with deities(except for mixing the sadhanas and mantras)?
As for the fortune telling, which one is correct? Is the numerology correct or the Tibetan Mewa reading? I have been getting very different past life answers as in the numerology as a tyrant and the Mewa as a red deer. I know it is of not much importance, but which is correct?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Dongho,

    Thank you for your questions. There are two ways of taking refuge with a guru, one is a short ritual ceremony and the other is you taking the teacher as your guru in your heart. In fact, we should take refuge in our guru every day, because for us, they are one and the same with the Buddha and enlightened beings.

    Most people think that the ceremony is the more important of the two, however what is also important is that the practitioner develop the inner conviction that the teacher is their guru and they feel this from their heart. For example, you can set up your altar, make offerings, and think of the person your consider as your teacher, then make the strong conviction that you have accepted this person as your teacher. This way, you take refuge with your teacher. This has been stated in many of the Buddhist texts. But this needs to be expressed in the way you think about your teacher, how you follow his/her teachings, etc.

    Since you have found a teacher that you would like to take refuge with, it is better if you contact this particular teacher and ask how to go about taking refuge with him, if you would like to undergo the short ceremony. As for empowerments, these need to be received in person, as the guru will plant the seeds of enlightenment in you. As part of the ceremony, the guru will have to perform some rituals and at certain points the practitioner would also need to be involved in the ritual to obtain the complete empowerment.

    As for the mixing of the lineages, this is not the case. Even though many Rinpoches have previous lives that belong to other lineages, in this life these Rinpoche’s practice the lineage they have been trained in. For example, if you have a Rinpoche that is from the Gelug lineage, in a previous life he/she could have been a practitioner of the Nyingma lineage. That does mean to say that this Rinpoche would be practicing both lineages in this life. The mixing of lineages is not encouraged, but each should be taught, learned and practiced separately, rather than mixing. This is because they each have their own unique and individual manner in which they teach the Dharma, and also which deities they practice.

    In the case of numerology and Tibetan astrology, both can be right. According to Buddhism we have all had countless previous lives, so it is definitely possible that both are indeed correct. Both are time-tested methods that have been used and relied upon throughout the centuries. From the Buddhist perspective, the reason why Tibetan astrology tells you what your previous life was, is to encourage you to do more practice. Because if you contemplate on the fact that you were a deer, your life most probably would not have been that good, and even in that life you would have been suffering, looking for food, surviving, etc. This should motivate you not to want to take such a rebirth again, and therefore practice the Dharma strongly in this life so that you can progress on your spiritual path and ultimately gain Buddhahood, which has no form of suffering at all. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Question asked by geronimo

Vajradhara mantra?

  1. Reply by pastor

    Dear Geronimo,

    Thank you for your question. Vajradhara is actually Buddha Shakyamuni in tantric form, as such he is known as an Adibuddha or a primordial Buddha. It was Shakyamuni, in the form of Vajradhara that taught various tantras. Therefore when the tantric scriptures talk about the teaching stemming from Shakyamuni, it means that they were taught by Shakyamuni in this form.

    Since Vajradhara is heavily associated with tantric practice, his visualisation and practice is not usually engaged in by those who do not have higher tantric initiation. However, there is nothing wrong with praying to Vajradhara as he is Shakyamuni himself. Therefore you can pray to Vajradhara using Shakyamuni’s mantra as they are one and the same:

    TAYATHA OM MUNI MUNI MAHA MUNI SHAKYAMUNI YE SOHA

    Since it was Shakyamuni Buddha who first turned the wheel of dharma and taught Buddhism during our times, he can be considered the first guru. In tantra we need to see all the lineage lamas, from the lama who taught the tantra, all the way to our own teacher as gurus who are one and the same, and that is the nature of the deity we are practicing. Since that is the case, we can think strongly that Vajradhara and our own guru are one and the same, and thereby we can pray to Vajradhara by reciting our own guru’s name mantra if they have one as well. I hope this helps. Thank you.

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Meet the Pastors

Serving the community. Tirelessly

Combining the responsibilities of the ordained and the appearance of a layperson, pastors are the connection between the sangha and the everyday practitioner. They are ordinary people who have taken an extraordinary step in dedicating their lives towards sharing the Buddhist tradition. As laypeople holding vows, pastors will make the Dharma accessible to more people, giving them guidance and sharing knowledge. The pastors are usually present at Kechara House and available for consultation anytime. For more information, contact [email protected].

Pastor Chia (sangha to be)

As a pastor, Chia will dedicate his life to befitting others through spreading the works of Tsem Rinpoche and Dharma to many people, through the use of pujas, rituals, counseling and sharing of his knowledge.

Ordained as a Pastor in 2011, Chia Song Peng has had a rich and varied Dharma career. He has held a core position with the Kechara Paradise retail outlets, served as a personal attendant to Tsem Rinpoche, embarked on various pilgrimages and received initiations into higher yoga tantric practices. He is accomplished in many pujas and has a deep understanding of the Dharma.

As a pastor, Chia has dedicated his life to befitting others through spreading the works of Tsem Rinpoche and Dharma to many people, through the use of pujas, rituals, counseling and sharing of his knowledge.

When Chia first met Tsem Rinpoche, he was asked if he wanted to become a monk, however even though this was his aspiration he informed Tsem Rinpoche that he would do so at a later date. For Chia, as he has is already in the Dharma full-time, it would be best if he became ordained. Tsem Rinpoche has reminded Chia from time to time to work towards becoming a monk and he promised that he would do so in the future.

Kechara began from nothing to become a growing Dharma organisation with major projects such as Kechara Forest Retreat, so Chia thinks that this is the perfect time to become ordained as a monk. Recently Tsem Rinpoche asked Chia again if he would like to be ordained, this time Chia said yes.

Pastor Khong Jean Ai (sangha to be)

Jean Ai wishes to become a vessel that holds the teachings of Lama Tsongkhapa to benefit future generations, inspiring others to live by the Buddha’s teachings.

Jean Ai met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche as a young child and through her parents' involvement with Kechara over the years, she has never known a life without His Eminence. Jean Ai was a regular volunteer of Tsem Ladrang during her childhood and teenage years. After graduating with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology from the University of Warwick in the UK and working at the London Probation Service, she returned to Kuala Lumpur to join Tsem Ladrang's e-division. There she managed kechara.com, responsible for the weekly Kechara e-newsletter, including content generation and editing. Since then she has joined His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s writing team, responsible for executing Rinpoche’s personal instructions and managing his correspondence.

Having visited a nunnery in India in 2004, Jean Ai remembers noticing how happy and purposeful everyone was. She had a feeling of familiarity and the sight of the robes comforted her. Immediately, Jean Ai messaged her mother who told her to ask Rinpoche’s advice. Rinpoche told her to complete her secular education so that when she taught the Dharma her words would carry the credibility and weight of a university degree, something she completed with the motivation that some day she wanted to become a nun.

Through her ordination as a nun, Jean Ai wishes to become a vessel that holds the teachings of Lama Tsongkhapa to benefit future generations, inspiring others to live by the Buddha’s teachings. Through this she hopes to repay the kindness of her parents and her Guru. Above all she wants to abide in a state free of suffering, and she wants this for others as well.

Pastor Shin Tan (sangha to be)

For Shin, this is a great step forward to being fully committed to the cause of others and repaying others’ kindness through sharing the Dharma with others.

Before joining Kechara, Shin worked as a lecturer and provider of content and e-learning content solutions for various start-ups. Whilst providing training to educators teaching students in English for Specific Purposes (ESP) at various colleges, she was invited to attend a Dharma talk given by His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche at Kechara House. This event rekindled her interest in Tibetan Buddhism, as she recalled the joy of accompanying her parents to teachings as a teenager.

Joining Kechara Media & Publications in 2006 as a volunteer, Shin assumed a full time position there as a Marketing Executive, with the aim of making His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s teachings available to more people around the world. Shin is now a member of the Tsem Ladrang Team, who takes care of His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s secular matters, enabling Rinpoche to focus on teaching the holy Dharma.

Shin states that when she decided to join Kechara full time, she had already decided to be of some benefit to others and spend the rest of her life doing only that. Working closely with His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche, seeing his tireless effort in helping others and spreading the Buddhadharma through the Gaden tradition despite tremendous challenges has made her realise that the next logical step is to become ordained as she has the opportune conditions to study with her Guru. For Shin this is also a great step forward to being fully committed to the cause of others and repaying others’ kindness through sharing the Dharma with others.

Pastor Adeline Woon (sangha to be)

Since finding her spiritual home here in Kechara, Adeline has made dharma work her life’s mission and wishes to dedicate herself fully towards the benefit of others.

Adeline stumbled across His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche's blog towards the end of 2010 and has been following his blog and Facebook page ever since. Since graduating from Dharma Drum Buddhist College Taiwan with a Masters of Arts in Religious Studies in July 2012, she returned to Malaysia and joined Kechara as a Senior Education Executive. Adeline was attracted by His Eminence’s straightforwardness and impressed at Kechara's growth under his guidance. To Adeline, His Eminence is someone who walks the talk, keeps his promises and sincerely cares for others displaying an excellent example of guru devotion, qualities that she seeks to develop herself.

Since finding her spiritual home here in Kechara, Adeline has made dharma work her life’s mission. It was in May 2013 that she officially requested His Eminence for ordination as a nun to dedicate her life fully for the dharma. According to Adeline, become ordained means that she is being true to her calling to live according to the dharma and be of benefit to others.

This however can only be achieved by meeting and studying under her root Guru. Adeline has been fortunate enough to have met with hers - His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche.

Pastor Niral Patel (sangha to be)

It is Niral’s motivation for full ordination to better himself, learn the teachings of our lineage in order to preserve them for future generations. He wishes to benefit others, just as he has benefited and is still benefiting from Tsem Rinpoche’s explanation of the Dharma.

Niral was born and raised in the UK, having graduated with a BA in Anthropology, he was working as a Financial Administrator for a Serviced Apartment & Hotel company as well as a Management Services company before stumbling across His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s Youtube channel, entirelyby accident. It was through His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s teachings that he began to understand the importance of practicing the Dharma, in order to benefit himself and others around him.

Having been in contact with one of Tsem Rinpoche’s long time students in the UK, he was encouraged to visit Kechara in late 2012 for a 10 day visit. At the end of the visit Tsem Rinpoche requested Niral to come to work at Kechara, to which he agreed.

Niral moved to Malaysia in February 2013 to work as an education coordinator at Kechara House, assisting the Education Division in the creation and implementation of the new education syllabus, teaching teenagers during the Kechara Sunday Dharma School. Ever since meeting Tsem Rinpoche, he has always been encouraged by Tsem Rinpoche to do more Dharma work and strive to better himself. It is with that in mind, that Niral has requested monastic ordination.

It is Niral’s motivation for full ordination to better himself, learn the teachings of our lineage in order to preserve them for future generations. He wishes to benefit others, just as he has benefited and is still benefiting from Tsem Rinpoche’s explanation of the Dharma.

Pastor Tan Gim Lee (sangha to be)

Gim Lee’s main focus is to guide and help anyone who steps through Kechara’s doors through Dharma sharing, counselling, performing pujas and other Buddhist services. She wishes to repay Rinpoche’s kindness by spreading Lama Tsongkhapa’s holy teachings and inspiring others on the spiritual path.

She discovered Kechara by chance in 2006 and started to participate Kechara's activities almost immediately especially the retreat to collect 10 million Migtsema recitations. In April 2006, when Gim Lee met H.E. Tsem Rinpoche and first listened to his teachings, she wept uncontrollably. Though she could not understand it at the time, she had finally found her perfect teacher. She is especially touched by Tsem Rinpoche's compassionate method of teaching by setting his own examples.

Having joined as a staff of Kechara House responsible for housekeeping in 2009, Gim Lee is now one of Kechara House's Front Desk Managers predominantly based in the retreat centre in Bentong, Pahang. She also teaches the Sunday Dharma Class and moderates Dharma discussions on Tsem Rinpoche's blog chat.

The many teachings she has received from Tsem Rinpoche have changed her priorities in life. She found answers to her questions about the purpose of life, and she has realised that the way to overcome the sufferings of pain and anger is by following the path of compassion and wisdom as taught by Lord Buddha. These realisations have led to her request to be ordained as a Sangha member.

As pastor now, and later as a Buddhist nun, Gim Lee's main focus is to guide and help anyone who steps through Kechara's doors through Dharma sharing, counselling, performing pujas and other Buddhist services. She wishes to repay Rinpoche's kindness by spreading Lama Tsongkhapa's holy teachings and inspiring others on the spiritual path.

Pastor Loh Seng Piow (sangha to be)

Loh Seng Piow developed a strong wish to help Rinpoche in spreading the Dharma to the world. With that determination, Loh Seng Piow chose not to pursue his PhD degree in Cambridge University (for which he had been offered a place), resigned from his research job, and joined Tsem Rinpoche as full-time Dharma worker, and has never looked back since.

Back in 2001, Loh Seng Piow had no inkling of just how involved in Dharma he would become. As a Masters degree-holder in Engineering, Loh Seng Piow was working as a research engineer in Singapore when he met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche. Rinpoche’s talk left a strong impression on him and after a few encounters with Rinpoche, Loh Seng Piow started developing websites for Rinpoche and Kechara.

Loh Seng Piow was trained in science, but soon realised that there were many questions that science could not answer. At the same time, he also felt that science and technology are not the solution to human problems, as humans are much better off compared to thousands years ago, yet the problems in this world are still the same, if not more, and we do not seem to be happier than our ancestors.

Loh Seng Piow soon realised that the Dharma is the ultimate solution to human problems, and that the methods used by His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche are very suitable for this modern era. Loh Seng Piow developed a strong wish to help Rinpoche in spreading the Dharma to the world. With that determination, Loh Seng Piow chose not to pursue his PhD degree in Cambridge University (for which he had been offered a place), resigned from his research job, and joined Tsem Rinpoche as full-time Dharma worker, and has never looked back since.

Meeting Rinpoche was a very refreshing experience for Loh Seng Piow, as he never knew Dharma could be so unconventional yet maintain its essence. As Rinpoche’s personal attendant, Loh Seng Piow has had many incredible moments with Rinpoche and considers himself extremely fortunate because he sees real Dharma in action, both on and off the throne. It challenges him to practice Dharma 24/7. In this way, Rinpoche has blown away his old and persistent way of thinking, which was very much focused on the outer rituals of Dharma.

Having seen that Tsem Rinpoche truly embodies what he teaches, Loh Seng Piow is convinced beyond doubt that it is possible to develop our minds to a higher state, and ultimately achieving enlightenment. All these factors have propelled Loh Seng Piow to take a step further in his Dharma career to become ordained as a pastor in order to be even more effective in sharing and disseminating the Dharma to benefit others.

Pastor Antoinette Kass (sangha to be)

Having come across Rinpoche’s teachings on Youtube and finding them very helpful and meaningful, Antoinette hopes to bring the same help and benefit to others as a Pastor.

Born in Luxembourg in 1966, with four older siblings, Antoinette Kass’ father was a carpenter and her mother was very busy cooking, washing, knitting, cultivating two gardens and one vineyard for the family, on top of doing the paperwork for her father’s company.

After completing her education, Antoinette worked in her father’s company and later in a German bank in Luxembourg. However, she didn’t want to work in an office all her life and wanted to do something more meaningful. After having worked for about 14 years, Antoinette went back to school full-time and earned her degree in occupational therapy in Bruxelles. She also trained in the Feldenkrais method and accomplished the training. Antoinette then worked with visually-impaired children for two years, and then with individuals who were chronically ill in their homes for seven years.

Antoinette first came across H.E. Tsem Rinpoche through his teachings on Youtube and found them very helpful, meaningful, clear and easy to understand. After her first visit to Kechara during her holidays in December 2011, Antoinette took refuge in October 2012 and decided to join Kechara as a full-time volunteer in December 2013.

Pastor Yek Yee

Naturally an introvert, Yek Yee has transformed what was once her weakness into her strength; making what was once impossible now eminently possible.

Independence was forced upon Kok Yek Yee from the tender age of nine, when she had to juggle between work and school to make ends meet. Always the introvert, Yek Yee had few friends and had difficulty expressing herself. So it was unexpected when she chose a career in journalism.

Yek Yee excelled as an award-winning reporter with Guang Ming Daily and Nanyang Siang Pau. Her articles garnered her a fanbase, and in writing, she found an outlet for the thoughts and feelings that she could not verbalise. However, despite her success, Yek Yee was not satisfied. Temporary happiness was not what she was looking for – success, money, relationships, or fame was not the key.

In her search for happiness, Yek Yee met H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, who told her “don’t retaliate with your speech, but use your power of writing to express yourself”. This led her to join Kechara Media & Publications as a writer; subsequently she was appointed Senior Editor as well as a Liaison to His Eminence.

Yek Yee now holds a core role in Kechara Care, giving advice, tours, counseling and teachings to whoever walks through their doors. Through courage and determination, she has transformed what was once her weakness into her strength; making what was once impossible now eminently possible.

As a Pastor, her patience and open-mindedness developed through her journey with Kechara will bring comfort and solace, and her new-found ability to nurture and teach others will bring hope to many.

Pastor Lanse Chiah

Having been a Pastor for a year, Lanse wishes to continue with her integral duties by renewing her vows again.

Lanse graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) from Jinan University in Guangzhou, China in 1999 and became a part-time lecturer for several years, teaching western medicine in a Traditional Chinese medical college in Kuala Lumpur.

For a long time, Lanse remained an atheist, subconsciously searching for a spiritual guru as she sought answers to questions she harboured in her mind, questions that had led her into a state of depression during her time at university. As such, she would often read philosophical books in her search for answers.

Lanse first came to know of Kechara in 2007, through her friend of over 10 years, Pastor Yek Yee. She was surprised to see a complete transformation in Pastor Yek Yee, whom she had always known as a non-spiritual person. The first book by Kechara that Lanse chanced upon was the Chinese version of Be Greedy. Naturally, Lanse was skeptical at first, thus she read the book in an attempt to find mistakes with the philosophy. However, she couldn’t find any and was left impressed by how logical the explanations in the book were.

In March 2009, Lanse joined Kechara Media & Publications (KMP) part-time to carry out Chinese translation and help with transcription. The following year, she contemplated upon whether to pursue a full-time medical or a Dharma career, finally deciding on the latter. Lanse came to realise that, although both careers share the same motivation of easing people’s sufferings, she felt that her work in Dharma could lead to a greater contribution for the sake of all sentient beings in a deeper, spiritual sense.

Having been a Pastor for a year, Lanse wishes to continue with her integral duties by renewing her vows again.

Pastor Han Nee

It was not until she witnessed how Rinpoche brought peace and comfort to her dying mother, that she realised she also wanted to touch others with the Dharma.

Lim Han Nee, a mother of two, is a retired secondary school principal. She retired in December 2000 after a 30-year career in education. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Education at Leicester University in the UK, at the end of 2001.

After gaining her master’s degree, Han Nee considered further options of embarking on a doctorate in education or spending her years in retirement, travelling and visiting family. At the same time, she was also in search of her spiritual path. She had begun exploring Theravadan and Chinese Mahayana Buddhism for answers to questions she had.

In December 2004, Han Nee attended a teaching retreat on the topic of the Lamrim and White Tara held by His Eminence Gelek Rinpoche. As the retreat proceeded, she found her questions were being answered. Then in June 2005, Han Nee was introduced to Kechara by her sister, where she met her spiritual guide, His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche, who has recently told her that she must go all the way in the Dharma for the benefit of others.

Han Nee had been a school guidance counsellor for nearly twenty years. However, it was not until she witnessed how Rinpoche brought peace and comfort to her dying mother, that she realised she also wanted to touch others with the Dharma.

A member of Kechara’s Puja Team, who conduct sponsored pujas in Shabten Khang, Han Nee is also a member of the Education Division with the portfolio of Content Development. Apart from this, Han Nee is also a member of the weekly Kechara Chat Time team.

Pastor David Lai

In 2014, with a sincere wish to benefit others, David decided to be ordained as a Buddhist pastor to continue serving the spiritual needs of the organisation.

David Lai has been a student of His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche for over a decade now and was one of the founding members of Kechara. He joined Kechara as a full time staff in 2005 and has been working in various departments beginning with the Kechara Paradise outlets.

Right from the beginning, David had been advised by His Eminence to go into writing. Overcoming various hurdles, David finally began his literary career with the publication of his first book and autobiography, There’s No Way But Up in 2009. The book charts his spiritual journey from his childhood and culminates in the meeting with His Eminence.

The positive feedback from this book led him to write various other publications like Vajrayogini and Other Power Places in Nepal – a pilgrim’s guide of Nepal, Tales My Lama Told Me – a book on short stories and Conversations in Love – a book on relationships. These books continue to inspire and bring people onto the Dharma.

Besides writing, David has found his passion in sharing the Dharma since his earlier days working in the Kechara Paradise outlets. Over the years, David has received innumerable teachings from His Eminence, ranging from public teachings to personal instructions and advice. He is known to passionately share these teachings whenever he can and to whomever he meets. In 2014, with a sincere wish to benefit others, David decided to be ordained as a Buddhist pastor to continue serving the spiritual needs of the organisation.

Pastor Henry Ooi

After following Rinpoche as a Dharma student for all these years, learning and practicing the Dharma, Henry knows the importance of the pastors’ role in Kechara founded by Rinpoche. He wants to become a pastor to serve Rinpoche, to serve Kechara, and to serve the public.

Born in 1952 in Penang, Henry moved to Kuala Lumpur in search of work after he finished his Form Five studies in 1969. He worked at different types of jobs and it was when he was jobless in 1997/8 that he met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche at the house of his cousin, Ruby (now Dato’ Ruby Khong), when Rinpoche was giving a dharma teaching. At that teaching Henry was awed by how Rinpoche taught Dharma with simple yet profound explanations.

With the kind guidance, teachings and Dharma practices by Rinpoche including instruction to engage in their first spiritual retreat, Henry and his wife Angel started a small business that soon became profitable. A few years later after Kechara House Buddhist Association was founded, Rinpoche started to enrol students as liaisons and that was when Henry and Dato’ Ruby offered themselves. Later more students were elected as liaisons that saw the birth of Liaisons Council. The Liaisons Council is now known as the Board of Directors of which Henry is one of its members.

Currently Henry is the Project Director, overseeing the construction and completion of projects in the Kechara Forest Retreat. Prior to this appointment he was the Head of Department in Kechara Paradise retail outlets of which he served for about ten years. He still remains as its company director as well as director for most of the companies within Kechara. He served one term as vice president of Kechara House Buddhist Association from 2012 to 2103.

After following Rinpoche as a Dharma student for all these years, learning and practicing the Dharma, Henry knows the importance of the pastors’ role in Kechara founded by Rinpoche. He wants to become a pastor to serve Rinpoche, to serve Kechara, and to serve the public. As he aspires to be a monk as he grows older, being a pastor of Kechara will pave the way for his aspiration. Henry believes that as one gets older in life, one should have already prepared for the imminent, death. And what a beautiful death it will be, to die in Kechara Forest Retreat in a monk’s robes. This is the kind of death that Henry wants. But before the imminent death happens, Henry wants to continue working in Kechara Forest Retreat, serving the community and whoever comes into it in whatever way he can. And when he is not physically anymore to serve others, he will request instructions from Rinpoche to enter into retreats in Kechara Forest Retreat.

Pastor Ng Kok Heng

Through his efforts in Kechara House, Kok Heng hopes to share his experience in Buddhism and especially in the Gelug School of Vajrayana Buddhism with anyone willing to practice.

Born in 1963 in Kuala Lumpur to a lower middle class traditional Chinese Buddhist/Taoist family, Kok Heng was educated in Victoria Institution (1976 – 1982) and Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), graduating with a Bachelor of Computer Science (Honours). Happily married since 1990 and a father of three, Kok Heng is a successful entrepreneur in the mobile communications industry and the CEO of the public-listed company, XOX Berhad.

Having always been interested in Buddhism but never really getting deeper into it, Kok Heng first met H.E. Tsem Rinpoche at a dharma talk in 2006 and was very attracted to his style and perfect English. In that first meeting, Rinpoche advised him to regularly attend the weekly Setrap Pujas, which he did. Kok Heng was facing many obstacles in his new business at the time, but through the blessings and teachings of Rinpoche, he has since found tremendous success.

The teaching that he finds most applicable and relevant is the “Eight Verses of Mind Transformation”. These teachings have helped him change his perspective in life, both in his daily worldly endeavours as well as his spiritual pursuits. Through his efforts in Kechara House, Kok Heng hopes to share his experience in Buddhism and especially in the Gelug School of Vajrayana Buddhism with anyone willing to practice.

Pastor Patsy Gooi

All that Patsy wants now is to spend the rest of her life doing dharma work, dharma practices and being of benefit to others.

Formerly a full time housewife with plenty of free time, Patsy had the great fortune to visit Gaden Monastery and meet H.E. Tsem Rinpoche almost twenty years ago. That one week stay in the monastery changed her view of life. Prior to that, she had no spiritual inclinations but meeting Rinpoche stirred something inside her, and she realised that there was more to life than just eating, sleeping, shopping and having fun. Rinpoche’s approach to dharma was logical and practical but most importantly, he stressed that we should always focus out and work towards benefitting others. Rinpoche made dharma easy to understand and his advice was and still is, to “change inwardly, not outwardly.”

In 2009, after years of practicing and applying what she had learned from Rinpoche’s teachings, Patsy decided to set up a Kechara retail outlet in Penang to share the dharma with others. She knew that Rinpoche’s teachings were very applicable to the people of our time and that his activities would benefit others just as they had benefited her. She also wanted to repay the kindness of her Guru who had constantly helped and guided her. Today, Kechara Paradise Penang is not just a dharma shop but also organises puja sessions, animal liberation and dharma talks.

In 2010, again with Rinpoche’s blessings, Patsy set up the Kechara Soup Kitchen Activity Center in Penang. Saddened to see the plight of the homeless and urban poor on the streets, Patsy decided to practice “compassion through action” as taught by Rinpoche in the most active way she knows. Today, together with her team of volunteers, Patsy feeds the homeless and urban poor four times a week and provides basic food provisions to many hardcore poor families on a monthly basis.

All that Patsy wants now is to spend the rest of her life doing dharma work and dharma practices, and that she may be of benefit to others.

Blog Chat

BLOG CHAT

Dear blog friends,

I’ve created this section for all of you to share your opinions, thoughts and feelings about whatever interests you.

Everyone has a different perspective, so this section is for you.

Tsem Rinpoche


SCHEDULED CHAT SESSIONS / 中文聊天室时间表

THURSDAY
10 - 11PM (GMT +8)
5 - 6AM (PST)
星期五
9 - 10PM (GMT +8)
4 - 5AM (PST)
(除了每个月的第一个星期五)
SATURDAY
11AM - 12PM (GMT +8)
FRIDAY 7 - 8PM (PST)
SUNDAY
9:30 - 10PM (GMT +8)
4:30 - 5AM (PST)

UPCOMING TOPICS FOR APRIL / 四月份讨论主题

Please come and join in the chat for a fun time and support. See you all there.


Blog Chat Etiquette

These are some simple guidelines to make the blog chat room a positive, enjoyable and enlightening experience for everyone. Please note that as this is a chat room, we chat! Do not flood the chat room, or post without interacting with others.

EXPAND
Be friendly

Remember that these are real people you are chatting with. They may have different opinions to you and come from different cultures. Treat them as you would face to face, and respect their opinions, and they will treat you the same.

Be Patient

Give the room a chance to answer you. Patience is a virtue. And if after awhile, people don't respond, perhaps they don't know the answer or they did not see your question. Do ask again or address someone directly. Do not be offended if people do not or are unable to respond to you.

Be Relevant

This is the blog of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche. Please respect this space. We request that all participants here are respectful of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche and his organisation, Kechara.

Be polite

Avoid the use of language or attitudes which may be offensive to others. If someone is disrespectful to you, ignore them instead of arguing with them.

Please be advised that anyone who contravenes these guidelines may be banned from the chatroom. Banning is at the complete discretion of the administrator of this blog. Should anyone wish to make an appeal or complaint about the behaviour of someone in the chatroom, please copy paste the relevant chat in an email to us at [email protected] and state the date and time of the respective conversation.

Please let this be a conducive space for discussions, both light and profound.

KECHARA FOREST RETREAT PROGRESS UPDATES

Here is the latest news and pictorial updates, as it happens, of our upcoming forest retreat project.

The Kechara Forest Retreat is a unique holistic retreat centre focused on the total wellness of body, mind and spirit. This is a place where families and individuals will find peace, nourishment and inspiration in a natural forest environment. At Kechara Forest Retreat, we are committed to give back to society through instilling the next generation with universal positive values such as kindness and compassion.

For more information, please read here (english), here (chinese), or the official site: retreat.kechara.com.

Noticeboard

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  • Lin Mun
    Friday, Apr 28. 2017 04:00 PM
    Everything we offer to Buddha is a form of mind transformation and practise our mind to be focus even when doing water offering. When pouring the water into the bowl we have to recite Om Ah Hum (3 times), think positively and pouring it slowly so it does not spill and leaving the space of a grain of rice before reaching the top. After offering we also have to clean the bowls properly without leaving stain. All this is to train our mind.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing the many benefits and water offering in a simple to understand article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/making-water-offerings-to-the-buddhas.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Apr 28. 2017 03:38 PM
    Trolls are assiociates as beings of Scandinavian folklore.A large number of different mythological creatures continue to live on in Scandinavian folklore.They have different shapes,habitat and filthy features . There are also numerous tales of trolls told and retold.Trolls are also believed to have the magigal powers, which were folktales ,posses capabilities that are beyond human .What ever it was a remnant of a long-lost reality for sure. I do believe that there’s a very high chance trolls had existed in the past.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing ,i do enjoyed all the stories in these article even though it just folk tales.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/the-hidden-nature-of-trolls.html
  • Jason
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 11:54 PM
    People always expect return on some contribution being done especially in charity events. When the return was under their expectations then they will feel sad or unhappy.
    As Rinpoche said, Dharma is a teachings to transform our mind to become bodicitta or selfless to benefit others without condition. Once we practiced selfless mind, our mind will not be affected by others people reaction.
    What will be my legacy? I think this is not really important to me anymore once I know Dharma teachings from Rinpoche.
    Thanks Datuk May for sharing to benefit more people.

    Jason

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/guest-contributors/what-will-be-your-legacy.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 08:56 PM
    Amazing miracles true story …of how Rinpoche helped. With Rinpoche blessing during the children baptismal ceremony,this little boy who had not spoken since 9 years old was able to speake again.Incredible….
    Chef Au truly believes been a vegetarian has help him to collects merits for his son.Rinpoche’s care and compassion has benefited many more people.Through these stories hope more people will be inspired to achieve the state of compassion and attainments.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Loh Seng Piow for this sharing.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-4.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 07:51 PM
    Having fully trust and faith in Rinpoche ,Fat monk’s mother was well again, after been diagnosed with cancerious tumour at the liver.
    Following instructions given by Rinpoche, his mother recited mantras and Fat monk did a series of pujas as told,his mother recovered then.
    Amazing……Miracles do happen.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Loh Seng Piow for sharing.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-3.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 05:27 PM
    We are no strangers to the creatures called Werewolves. They are often depicted as the Jekyll-and-Hyde-like monsters in movies who are unable to control their animal instincts when they shift from human form to a wolf-like creature, usually during the full moon. Together with the Vampires who can transform into bats, are my childhood imagery villains, who triggered my curiosity on mythical creatures during younger days. They still do, lol.

    It is gruesome to learn that real life werewolves are actually brutal even when they are in human forms. It is a far depict from the movies and fictions, where they are civil and level headed when in human form. I hope one day science or technology can provide more proves the existence of werewolves, and debunk the reason of this mystical shapeshifter.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/paranormal/werewolves-the-shapeshifters.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 05:07 PM
    The miraculous power of Protectors’ practice can heal and shield us from negative karma from ripening. Through the blessings of our Guru, coupled with strong faith and trust, the practices will take effect swiftly and effectively. Rejoice to Steven Lee. May he be guided by the Three Jewels always. Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow for sharing the true story with us.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-10.html
  • Lin Mun
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 03:57 PM
    This is a very touching article. I totally agree that dog is a man’s best friend. They are always so loyal to the owner. However it is sad that not all pet owners are such. Some will only treat them literally as an animal and therefore do not take good care of them. Dogs or any other animals are beings that have feeling. There should not be neglected and be abused by us. This article reminds us to always care for all beings and respect them.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this heartwarming article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 02:21 PM
    Its a heartfelt touching article of this faithful dog.Cannot imagine this ,such a wonderful relationship between that dog and the deceased owner.The greatest fear dogs know is the fear that we will not come back for them That i noticed from observing from my pet poodle.In this case this faithful dog knew his owner won’t be back.
    Dogs are loyal, patient, fearless, forgiving, capable of pure love and have feelings too.He must have missed the owner badly that he wanted to accompany the owner all the way to the resting place.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing. May that faithful dog ,continue to serve and well taken, love by the other family members.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 01:46 PM
    Werewolves are known to be mythical creatures found in fiction instead of lurking in the dark woods,In various parts of the world there were few cases who have gone down in history as real life werewolves Interesting to read it from these post..How far it was true or just legends.,no one really know . Many myths and legends surrounding werewolves .To become a werewolf, it is necessary to be bitten by a werewolf in their form at the time of the full moon. Thats what all of us knew from the movies and from fiction told. Reports of werewolf sightings continued even till this century but mostly in between 1428 and 1447 .The most recent sighting of werewolf sightings in 1972. was in Ohio .but eventually subsided .
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing these interesting article which i do enjoyed reading it,
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/paranormal/werewolves-the-shapeshifters.html
  • Valentina
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 01:11 PM
    Join our blog chat session this Saturday 11AM – 12PM (GMT +8) on the topic of:

    Twenty-Four Holy Places & Eight Great Charnel Grounds part 2 – (focus topic: Eight Great Charnel Grounds)

    At one time there was a god by the name of Rudra who was originally part of Mahadeva’s retinue. He was a very fierce being who also had many of his own consorts. Together with his consorts he began to oppress sentient beings, and promoted violence and unethical behaviour. At that time, Heruka once again arose, and in a dance of great compassionate wrath, liberated Rudra and his consorts from their physical bodies, sending their minds to pure lands. The places where Rudra’s body parts fell became charnel grounds. …read more by clicking the following link:

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/twenty-four-holy-places-eight-great-charnel-grounds.html
  • Jason
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 03:07 AM
    This year Wesak Day fall on 10 of May. This day is very special and meaningful to me because I will visit Kechara Forest Retreat(KFR) to join some meritorious event there.
    For me, Wesak is a day to commemorate Buddha Sakyamuni in three aspect( Birth , Enlightened, Nirwana).
    While we celebrate Wesak, we must remind ourselves to learn from Buddha teachings and practice it in order to gain attainment.
    Thanks Rinpoche and Pastor Seng Piow for sharing in order to create more understanding on Wesak Day.

    Jason

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/wesak-day-special-on-rtm-2.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 06:10 PM
    OMG! This is very touching. To see a doggie who never left go of his owner in spite of death. Way more powerful than many who proclaimed “till death do us part.” Just like the human, not all doggies are as loyal as this tear-jerking pet, but I truly believe almost all doggies offer unconditional love to the person who feeds and cares for them. Even when they are stray animals. There was a stray dog who will run two streets from the entrance of the “Taman” until the car stops in front of the house, just to greet me. You can imagine the warm and conviction in my heart that these beings are more than capable of loving than many of us, human! Thank you for this lovely sharing. I miss my doggie, Sherab.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 06:00 PM
    Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow, for this amazing sharing. There is no doubt about the ability of our Guru, His Eminence the 25th Tsem Tulku Rinpoche. His incarnations have been compassionate and taken rebirth to return and spread the dharma so that sentient beings can benefit and learn some dharma in our short life.

    We shall never doubt our Guru; but must see that He is one with our Yidam and Protector, an attained being. Even if our Guru does not demonstrate clairvoyance abilities, we must never contest our Guru, for he holds the key (dharma) that can liberate us from eternal suffering in samsara.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-1-2.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 05:50 PM
    Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow, for the illustrated miracle story on how Rinpoche guided Cynthia and Marici away from danger through protector’s practice. The unseen exist, whether we like it or not. Some of them are malicious and have the affinity or karma with some of us. Hence they can cause harm and disturbance. By engaging in Protectors’ practice like Dorje Shugden and Setrap that have been practiced by the high lamas of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism, we are protected and guarded against harm.

    Rinpoche is compassionate and only want the best for us. His teachings are not meant to show off the power of the divines but offer us a way out from our desperate samsara conundrum that binds us from engaging in deeper spiritual practice. Rinpoche always teaches us to focus on mind transformation and Tsongkhapa practice. How fortunate we are to have met Rinpoche in this lifetime. We must not let this rare and precious opportunity go to waste.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-12.html

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

Messages from Rinpoche

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Technical: Lew Kwan Leng, Justin Ripley, Yong Swee Keong
Design: Justin Ripley, Cynthia Lee
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Writer: Pastor Loh Seng Piow
Admin: Pastor Loh Seng Piow, Beng Kooi

I must thank my dharma blog team who are great assets to me, Kechara and growth of dharma in this wonderful region. I am honoured and thrilled to work with them. I really am. Maybe I don't say it enough to them, but I am saying it now. I APPRECIATE THESE GUYS VERY MUCH!

Tsem Rinpoche

What Am I Writing Now

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The Unknown

The Known and unknown are both feared,
Known is being comfortable and stagnant,
The unknown may be growth and opportunities,
One shall never know if one fears the unknown more than the known.
Who says the unknown would be worse than the known?
But then again, the unknown is sometimes worse than the known. In the end nothing is known unless we endeavour,
So go pursue all the way with the unknown,
because all unknown with familiarity becomes the known.
~Tsem Rinpoche

Photos On The Go

Click on the images to view the bigger version. And scroll down and click on "View All Photos" to view more images.
Holy Lady Buddha Vajra Yogini\'s blessing can be found when we decide to focus out to others instead of in to only ourselves.
~ Tsem Tulku Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
Holy Lady Buddha Vajra Yogini's blessing can be found when we decide to focus out to others instead of in to only ourselves. ~ Tsem Tulku Rinpoche
His Holiness Vajradhara Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Monastery who is the refuge of countless, gives a clear explanation of Dorje Shugden. One is able to hear his holy voice and translation by Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen! Please see here and share: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=122352
2 weeks ago
His Holiness Vajradhara Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Monastery who is the refuge of countless, gives a clear explanation of Dorje Shugden. One is able to hear his holy voice and translation by Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen! Please see here and share: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=122352
: This picture says it all. Click on it to enlarge and read and please share.
3 weeks ago
: This picture says it all. Click on it to enlarge and read and please share.
This is a simple chart showing the three main psychic channels used in tantric meditations to control the winds, raise tummo (fire energy), gain higher consciousness and insight and also for gaining siddhis. These channels are used in meditations for controlling the mind, when the mind ejects from the body (phowa) and one\'s death. These three channels are very important. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
This is a simple chart showing the three main psychic channels used in tantric meditations to control the winds, raise tummo (fire energy), gain higher consciousness and insight and also for gaining siddhis. These channels are used in meditations for controlling the mind, when the mind ejects from the body (phowa) and one's death. These three channels are very important. Tsem Rinpoche
I think my cute doggie Oser is actually Tintin\'s dog Snowy!
3 weeks ago
I think my cute doggie Oser is actually Tintin's dog Snowy!
Great Masters of Gaden Shartse Monastery. From left to right: His Eminence Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, His Holiness Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, H.E. Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, His Holiness 101st Gaden Tripa throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal.
3 weeks ago
Great Masters of Gaden Shartse Monastery. From left to right: His Eminence Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, His Holiness Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, H.E. Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, His Holiness 101st Gaden Tripa throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal.
 Left to right: Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl. The three of them are my beautiful and loved Schnauzer dogs. They loved looking through the window to see traffic, people and movement. They loved the smells that drifted through their little noses. I love seeing the three of them together like this. I love them. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Left to right: Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl. The three of them are my beautiful and loved Schnauzer dogs. They loved looking through the window to see traffic, people and movement. They loved the smells that drifted through their little noses. I love seeing the three of them together like this. I love them. Tsem Rinpoche
Little Mumu boy...he loved balloons. When he saw them, he wanted to get close and perhaps bite them. Cute. I love this picture of Mumu reaching for the balloons. He was young and healthy! This picture captures his energy, enthusiasm, curiosity and high energy. I love this picture of him chasing the balloons. His pictures are always so nice....He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Little Mumu boy...he loved balloons. When he saw them, he wanted to get close and perhaps bite them. Cute. I love this picture of Mumu reaching for the balloons. He was young and healthy! This picture captures his energy, enthusiasm, curiosity and high energy. I love this picture of him chasing the balloons. His pictures are always so nice....He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
Little Mumu boy and myself.. He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Little Mumu boy and myself.. He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
2017-His Holiness the 101st Gaden Tripa, Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal is doing well and 90 years old. His Holiness Lungrik Namgyal is a powerful master of sutra and tantra and practitioner of Dorje Shugden. Currently residing in France.
3 weeks ago
2017-His Holiness the 101st Gaden Tripa, Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal is doing well and 90 years old. His Holiness Lungrik Namgyal is a powerful master of sutra and tantra and practitioner of Dorje Shugden. Currently residing in France.
One of the most sacred statues of Avalokitesvara made of sandalwood housed in Lhasa, Tibet. He has shown miracles also. Every pilgrim wishes to make offerings to this Lord of Compassion.
3 weeks ago
One of the most sacred statues of Avalokitesvara made of sandalwood housed in Lhasa, Tibet. He has shown miracles also. Every pilgrim wishes to make offerings to this Lord of Compassion.
 Sacred Avalokitesvara statue in Nepal. Thousands come to worship this special Buddha as it has conferred wishes in the past.
3 weeks ago
Sacred Avalokitesvara statue in Nepal. Thousands come to worship this special Buddha as it has conferred wishes in the past.
Tsem Rinpoche\'s Vajra Yogini statue and offerings
3 weeks ago
Tsem Rinpoche's Vajra Yogini statue and offerings
Two of my teachers from Gaden Shartse Monastery in South India. Left side is Most Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen whom I lived with for 8 years in Los Angeles where his centre Thubten Dhargye Ling is located. On the right is the abbot emeritus H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche the scholar and yogi. I was very fortunate to have them in my life and learn so much dharma from them. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Two of my teachers from Gaden Shartse Monastery in South India. Left side is Most Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen whom I lived with for 8 years in Los Angeles where his centre Thubten Dhargye Ling is located. On the right is the abbot emeritus H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche the scholar and yogi. I was very fortunate to have them in my life and learn so much dharma from them. Tsem Rinpoche
 It is so wonderful to be kind to people, be caring, feed them, make sure they are healthy and share dharma if they are interested with them for their future. But simply to be nice to others is worth getting up and being alive...otherwise why be alive to hurt/use/distrust and hate others? No point living that way..must change that..... It is nice to live our lives to benefit others and be patient even if we have been hurt before because by caring we can heal the hurt and \'defeat\' the ones that hurt us because we don\'t become bitter..... Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
It is so wonderful to be kind to people, be caring, feed them, make sure they are healthy and share dharma if they are interested with them for their future. But simply to be nice to others is worth getting up and being alive...otherwise why be alive to hurt/use/distrust and hate others? No point living that way..must change that..... It is nice to live our lives to benefit others and be patient even if we have been hurt before because by caring we can heal the hurt and 'defeat' the ones that hurt us because we don't become bitter..... Tsem Rinpoche
Tsem Rinpoche\'s heritage in China. Must read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=120499
4 weeks ago
Tsem Rinpoche's heritage in China. Must read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=120499
Thank you Buddhist Pastor Chia for sharing your story on how you met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche over 20 years ago. We can learn much from your story.~Admin  Please read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116928
4 weeks ago
Thank you Buddhist Pastor Chia for sharing your story on how you met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche over 20 years ago. We can learn much from your story.~Admin Please read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116928
Mumu boy is incredibly photogenic. He is beyond cute. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
Mumu boy is incredibly photogenic. He is beyond cute. Tsem Rinpoche
 (left to right) Rabten Tulku, Gonsar Rinpoche, Gyume Kensur Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, H.H. Gaden Trisur Rinpoche (France)
4 weeks ago
(left to right) Rabten Tulku, Gonsar Rinpoche, Gyume Kensur Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, H.H. Gaden Trisur Rinpoche (France)
Beautiful 200 roses arrived today for me as a gift from Su Ming. Very kind and thoughtful of her as usual. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
Beautiful 200 roses arrived today for me as a gift from Su Ming. Very kind and thoughtful of her as usual. Tsem Rinpoche
It\'s good to be with kind and sincere people.
4 weeks ago
It's good to be with kind and sincere people.
If we are kind, we lose less of ourselves-Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
If we are kind, we lose less of ourselves-Tsem Rinpoche
My Mumu boy didn\'t want to eat. Eating is not one of his favorite activities throughout his life. So I talked to him to let him know why he needs to eat and keep his strength up when this photo was taken. He was listening intently and after my talk with him, he ate. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
My Mumu boy didn't want to eat. Eating is not one of his favorite activities throughout his life. So I talked to him to let him know why he needs to eat and keep his strength up when this photo was taken. He was listening intently and after my talk with him, he ate. Tsem Rinpoche
This is so true. Click to enlarge and understand more about unpleasant people.
1 month ago
This is so true. Click to enlarge and understand more about unpleasant people.
This mahasiddha Kukkuripa is easy to identify as he is accompanied by a small dog whom he loved very much.
1 month ago
This mahasiddha Kukkuripa is easy to identify as he is accompanied by a small dog whom he loved very much.
Mumu taking a rest in the turquoise room. Over the years, I always feel very satisfied when I see him covered with a blanket, safe and sleeping. I always wanted to make sure he was safe from harm, illness and distress. I wanted him to have a happy and loved life. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Mumu taking a rest in the turquoise room. Over the years, I always feel very satisfied when I see him covered with a blanket, safe and sleeping. I always wanted to make sure he was safe from harm, illness and distress. I wanted him to have a happy and loved life. Tsem Rinpoche
I wrapped my little Mumu boy up in my blanket and propped him up on my bed. He didn\'t move or wiggle and just looked at me. He is one funny entertaining little guy. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
I wrapped my little Mumu boy up in my blanket and propped him up on my bed. He didn't move or wiggle and just looked at me. He is one funny entertaining little guy. Tsem Rinpoche
March 2017-Coaxing my little Mumu boy to eat his meal. He was not well and therefore not hungry. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
March 2017-Coaxing my little Mumu boy to eat his meal. He was not well and therefore not hungry. Tsem Rinpoche
Click on picture to enlarge and see what Milarepa says. Profound.
1 month ago
Click on picture to enlarge and see what Milarepa says. Profound.
We are always trying to get somewhere, try something new, find some friends, get some entertainment and in the end we end up in the same place. Time to really practice Dharma seriously and stop wasting time we don\'t have. ~Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
We are always trying to get somewhere, try something new, find some friends, get some entertainment and in the end we end up in the same place. Time to really practice Dharma seriously and stop wasting time we don't have. ~Tsem Rinpoche
March 20, 2017-Mumu is just so adorable with his bright eyes.
1 month ago
March 20, 2017-Mumu is just so adorable with his bright eyes.
More and more people inviting Lord Dorje Shugden home to connect with on their shrines. I am so happy to see this as it will benefit them and their families so much. That is the purpose to be alive which is to benefit others as much as possible. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
More and more people inviting Lord Dorje Shugden home to connect with on their shrines. I am so happy to see this as it will benefit them and their families so much. That is the purpose to be alive which is to benefit others as much as possible. Tsem Rinpoche
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
1 month ago
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
1 month ago
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
The Japanese are very innovative. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
The Japanese are very innovative. Tsem Rinpoche
Read this as it will be interesting
1 month ago
Read this as it will be interesting
Recite this before any meal or drinks for blessings of abundance. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Recite this before any meal or drinks for blessings of abundance. Tsem Rinpoche
This sacred statue of Buddha is in Nepal brought originally from Tibet and has spoken on many occasions. Very blessed to see this holy image and keep a picture...bless you always. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
This sacred statue of Buddha is in Nepal brought originally from Tibet and has spoken on many occasions. Very blessed to see this holy image and keep a picture...bless you always. Tsem Rinpoche
I love Mumu boy tremendously. We went through so much together for so many years. You are a great being to be with. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
I love Mumu boy tremendously. We went through so much together for so many years. You are a great being to be with. Tsem Rinpoche
Dear everyone, I am sharing this beautiful and modern altar to Dorje Shugden in Malaysia. I am glad to see more and more people creating sacred spaces. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Dear everyone, I am sharing this beautiful and modern altar to Dorje Shugden in Malaysia. I am glad to see more and more people creating sacred spaces. Tsem Rinpoche
Lhamo Karmo, a female buddha form visualized above the crown of one\'s head at the time of death, to encourage consciousness to leave the body via the crown aperture. From my book \"The Female Buddhas.\"- Glenn Mullin
2 months ago
Lhamo Karmo, a female buddha form visualized above the crown of one's head at the time of death, to encourage consciousness to leave the body via the crown aperture. From my book "The Female Buddhas."- Glenn Mullin
The Tibetan female tulku Dorje Pakmo, from a fresco on the wall of the Dorje Pakmo monastery (Samding) in Tibet, near the Turquoise Lake. In Tibet the Dorje Pakmo was ranked with the Dalai Lama, Panchen Lama and Sakya Trizin as the four highest lamas in the country.-from Glenn Mullin
2 months ago
The Tibetan female tulku Dorje Pakmo, from a fresco on the wall of the Dorje Pakmo monastery (Samding) in Tibet, near the Turquoise Lake. In Tibet the Dorje Pakmo was ranked with the Dalai Lama, Panchen Lama and Sakya Trizin as the four highest lamas in the country.-from Glenn Mullin
Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl checking out the scene..cute
2 months ago
Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl checking out the scene..cute
My Dharma boy has such a cute expression here. He is a good boy!
2 months ago
My Dharma boy has such a cute expression here. He is a good boy!
February 9,2017-My Mumu boy and Oser girl are just relaxing together..super cute
3 months ago
February 9,2017-My Mumu boy and Oser girl are just relaxing together..super cute
Click on the picture to enlarge and see what Suzy from Hawaii commented on the Dorje Shugden issue after much research. She is very candid and honest. Refreshing. Original is posted here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vl-4lIwxph4
3 months ago
Click on the picture to enlarge and see what Suzy from Hawaii commented on the Dorje Shugden issue after much research. She is very candid and honest. Refreshing. Original is posted here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vl-4lIwxph4
This is a good one to read
3 months ago
This is a good one to read
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  • April 20, 2017 10:45
    Ronnie asked: Dear Rinpoche and Pastors, I'm studying abroad and very far away from home, seeking guidance and advice as I have no one else I can talk to about this. Please read with an open mind, I don't know where else to go for help. I'm pregnant and it's an unplanned pregnancy. I'm stuck between keeping it or letting it go. I'm young and having a child at my age in the society we live in now would be considered taboo. The father of the child thinks I should let it go because it may cause a setback to both our careers and cause major family issues. He thinks we aren't ready to raise a child especially since we're both still in university and his parents think badly of me even though they've never met me or tried to get to know me. I'm sure no one would ever have the heart to take away a heartbeat but it seems like it isn't the right time to have a child now and if we did go through with it, the child probably won't be able to have the best things life can offer looking at where we are now in terms of finance and maturity. I'm lost, confused and unsure what the right thing to do is now. Any advice at all would be helpful right now. Thank you so very much for taking time to read my story.
    pastor answered: Dear Ronnie, I’m sorry to read that you are going through this situation. I can understand that this situation is tough to go through. You are always more than welcome to come here to ask questions. May I suggest that you talk to either someone in your family or your friends to help you come to an appropriate solution? This is because, what you feel, what you are going through, will change from time to time and you would need someone to talk to, someone that you can lean on through this situation you are facing. Depending on where you are in the world, professional help can also be sought to help you make a decision, which will be the best option for you seeking help. From a Buddhist perspective, the taking of a life is not considered a positive act, therefore those on the Buddhist path, would normally abstain taking a life if possible. However, that being said, one must always weigh the decision oneself. Everything we do in life, necessarily involves karma both positive and negative. That is why Buddhists try to overcome samsara in general. Your situation is complicated because you are abroad, but if possible you should really open up to someone you are close to in order to help you through making this decision on a personal basis. When you talk to someone, whom you are able to express yourself more, you may able to come to better decision that is right for you. There may be other options open to you if you seek help. I personally know women who have been in similar situations. One of these women, let the child go and the other went through the pregnancy and then gave the child up for adoption. You may or may not have thought of this option, but it is one that could be open to you, depending on where in the world you are. Any decision we make in life, however big or small it may seem, has far reaching consequences whether in this life, or in future lives. This is just a part and parcel of life within samsara. However, we should weigh the decisions we make clearly given the situation we are in. We cannot always do this weighing ourselves, but need to talk about our options with others we can rely on such a friends, family or professionals. You should consider doing this, which will help you greatly emotionally, and may give you the grounding you need to make the correct decision for you. I hope this helps.
  • April 19, 2017 04:57
    Dongho asked: What is a nyung ne practice? According to Lama Zopa Rinpoche, it's a purification sadhana. However, what are the instructions for this? I'm guessing it's to Chenrezig, but how does it work? Also, from what I have read, Vajrasattva practice is only for broken vows while Akshobhya is for regular misdeeds. Does that mean one has to take the Akshobhya practice to purify bad karma from this life and previous instead of Vajrasattva? As for the purification practices, are some like Vajrasattva and Chenrezig only to purify the bad karma and let it come quickly or is it to prevent it from coming? I am confused in it. As for signs, I recited a mantra of White Yangchenma that a Sakya lama, Lama Kunga Thartse Rinpoche, gave me with the Sakya visualizations I read on, and after one mala, I heard some lady call my Korean name even though no one in my neighborhood knows of my name and my family members weren't in the area. What does this mean?
    pastor answered: Dear Dongho, Thank you for your questions, it’s nice to see you back here again. Nyung Ne practice is a purification practice that centres around Chenrezig. It is a very beneficial practice that stems from a holy nun named Gelong-ma Palmo. It is a two and a half day practice that can be repeated many times over and over again to intensify the purification and build a closer relationship with Chenrezig. As well as its purification aspect, the practice is known to generate vast amount of merit, and also compassion, as the practice centres around Chenrezig, the Buddha of compassion. The practice involves taking the eight Mahayana precepts for the duration, fasting, meditating, prostrating and praying. The practice usually entails empowerment into the practice of Chenrezig, therefore the exact meditations, prayers can only be explained to those who have the empowerment. Vajrasattva practice is not necessarily only for repairing broken vows, etc. That’s why it is advised that you engage in the practice at the end of the day, to repair any vows that you may have broken during that day, as well as stopping any negative karma you created that day from multiplying. This would entail reciting the mantra 21 times, together with the four opponent powers. However, if you engage in this practice more intensely, it definitely has the capability to purify all sorts of karma. That is the reason why in Ngondro, or preliminary practices one engages in before tantra, the practice of 100,000 Vajrasattva mantra recitation is an integral part. You can read more about Vajrasattva and his practice here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/an-important-purification-practice.html. Within purification practices, some of the karma will be purified completely, so you do not feel its effects at all, but when purifying other karma you will need to feel its effects somehow. For example if you have the karma to be in a car accident and get seriously injured, and you are engaging in any practice, but especially the purification practice, since you have purified most of the karma, you will only experience being in a very minor car accident, with only very superficial injuries. Therefore, in this case, the karma has been purified to the extent that it does not affect you as much, but you still need to feel part of its effect. In regards to any signs that you receive which engaging in the practices given to you by one of your specific gurus, you should report the happenings to that particular guru. He will be able to give you more of an accurate answer, as it may be related to the particular practice that he gave to you. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • April 17, 2017 07:06
    Thomas asked: Dear Pastors, When a serkyem set has been used so much and one is ready to get rid of it and replace it with a new one. What is a respecful mode of disposal?
    pastor answered: Dear Thomas, Thank you for your question. Your question shows that you have a lot of respect for offering items, which is very good. If possible, you should try to repair the item if within your means, and doing so make embellishments to make it a better offering item, which can still be used. If this is not possible, then you should dispose of the item with a good motivation. You should think that this item has been used to make offerings to the enlightened beings, but now that it is broken or unusable, you are going to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. Since it itself is not a receptacle of energies of the enlightened beings, such as a statue, tsa tsa or thangka, it does not require a special dissolution before being disposed of. However since it was used to make offerings, it still requires some form of respect when disposing, and this comes from one’s motivation and the way in which you dispose of it. Usually, when disposing of items in this way, make the motivation that you have used it and that it is now time to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. When you do this you can dispose of it in a respectful manner. For example, if you are going to throw it away, you do not simply open the trash can and throw it in. You wrap it up in something, like a bag or newspaper and dispose of it respectfully. Another method you can dispose of it is to recycle the object, if the material it is made from can be recycled. That way you are more conscious of the environment as well. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • April 16, 2017 22:38
    Curious asked: Dear pastors In a recent youtube video something like paying respect to deceased ones, pastor Nirel Patel explained that merits are like the interest and good karma is like the principal sum. So merits always regenerate themselves and hence do not get used up but good karma is like the principal sum so it gets used up. So my question is what are practices that generate merit? And can we turn a mundane daily activity into a meritorious one? Maybe can you provide an example?
    pastor answered: Dear Curious, Thank you for your question. First, to clarify a point, in regards to good karma, you are right, it is like a principal sum in a bank account, but you take away from it when you experience something good in your life, and you add to it when you do good deeds. Merit on the other hand, once accrued never diminishes, therefore when something is based on merit, it is based on the energies of this never diminishing sum, which you could say is like interest. In short, the principal sum when talking about karma is always added to and subtracted from. However, when talking about merit, once you have it, there is no way to destroy it, you will always benefit from it. There are various ways to explain how to generate merit. I will explain a way that I find easiest to understand. In normal life, when we go about performing any sort of activity, be it ‘good’ or ‘bad’ we do so out of ignorance of the true nature of existence, and it is usually self-motivated. For example, we work our entire lives to generate monetary income, so that we have enough money, resources, and materials goods to be comfortable. This is self-motivated, but it is the accepted way the world works these days, and is part and parcel of being bound to samsaric life. On the other hand, the act of merit making can be categorised into three parts: i) motivation, ii) the act itself, and iii) dedication. Let’s start with motivation, when engaging in various virtuous acts, we should have the motivation that by engaging in the act, we have the motivation to alleviate the suffering of someone else, and that may we gain enlightenment so that we can benefit them in the future. The second is the act itself. The third is to dedicate the energy of the virtuous act to gaining enlightenment. These three are what make merit. This may be a little confusing, so let me give an example: giving help to a homeless person. Whereas in ordinary life, this is something praised as a very good deed, it does not create merit without motivation and dedication. In order for this to become merit, one must set the motivation that one is giving help to the homeless free of the eight worldly concerns, to alleviate their suffering and also making the motivation that you will achieve enlightenment for the sake of the person or people you are helping. Then after you have helped them, you dedicate the energy created to the spiritual journey towards full enlightenment to help all sentient beings, while at the same time benefiting as many sentient beings as possible on the way there. This transforms the act into not only a virtuous action but also one that generates merit. On the other hand, if you were to help the homeless without these, you are creating good karma, which although beneficial, keeps you bound to existence within samsara. As it is the goal of Buddhist practice to overcome the cycle of samsara, a Buddhist would want to generate merit instead of good karma. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • April 13, 2017 11:38
    D.A. asked: If Begtse Chan is not from Mongolia, what are his real origins or story exactly? And which lamas offer his empowerment? As for Manjushri Nagarakshasa, which lamas specifically offer his empowerment and practice?
    pastor answered: Dear D.A. Thank you for your question. Begtse, is also known as Chamsing, or Jamsaran in Mongolian. As mentioned in an earlier sharing with someone who also asked a question about Begtse, the practiced was introduced to Tibet from India by the translator Nyen Lotsawa, and is considered one of the main protectors of the Hayagriva cycle of tantras. According to the scriptures that derive from the Sakya tradition, who incorporated the practice from the translators, and in which tradition Begtse became a very important protector, Begtse in a previous life was born many eons ago. In that particular life, he was born as the younger prince in a royal family. His name was Drag Gye, and his older brother’s name was Drag Den. Over time both princes developed differing religious beliefs, to the point where they could not get along with each as they both held their own religious views strongly. As was the custom during that time, they decided to settle their differences through logical debate, with the loser having to convert to the winner’s religion. This custom was also prevalent in ancient India, and there are many stories of such debates occurring between the great masters of the past and those of other faiths. Drag Gye lost the various debates, but ran away instead of converting to his older brother’s religion. Drag Den caught him, and tried to punish him for breaking the rules of debate and going back on his promise. Drag Gye told his brother that even if he was killed he would not give up his religion, however if Drag Den let him go, that in the future when Drag Den became enlightened, he would protect his teachings. With that Drag Den let him go, and gave him a set of copper armour, a stick, and a bow and arrow. Drag Den also gave Drag Gye a new name: Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po. After this incident the two brothers never saw each other again in that lifetime. Many lives after that Drag Den was reborn as Prince Siddharta, who eventually became enlightened and is now known as Buddha Shakyamuni. Drag Gye, or Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po, was reborn in a cemetery in the North West direction. His parents gave birth to two eggs, one was a coral-like colour and the other was an agate-like colour. These two eggs flew high into the sky and reached the heavenly realms, there they subdued the gods. Then flying back down to earth, they subdued many nagas. Eventually they even came to threaten their own parents. The parents petitioned the Dharma protector Ekajati for her help, who threw her own staff (khatvanga) at the eggs, and broke them apart. From the coral-like coloured egg came a ferocious man with yellow hair, he proclaimed that his name was ‘Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po’. When he emerged he was wearing a set of copper armour, wielding a stick, copper sword, and a bow and arrow. From the agate-like coloured egg came a female who was blue in colour, her teeth were like shells, she had turquoise eyebrows, and her hair was made of fire. She emerged wielding a copper knife, ritual dagger (phurba), rode a terrifying bear and wore an intricate necklace made of agate and lapis lazuli. It was then that Ekajati once again took action, and subdued them, after which they became Dharma protectors. The male figure became known as Begtse, and the female as his sister. When you propitiate Begtse, his sister is automatically included and aids practitioners as well. As for which lama offer his practice and empowerment, most lamas do not advertise which teachings or practice they hold. Therefore you should respectfully approach lamas and ask them if they have the practice and can bestow it, or if they know of any lamas that have the practice, depending on how much you want to practice Begtse. Similarly, this applies to those lamas who have the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. However, this practice is included in the Rinjung Gyatsa series of empowerments. This unique cycle of teachings, includes all 4 classes of tantric practices, and includes the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. Therefore those lamas who have received the complete transmission, and have kept their commitments for this practice, are qualified to pass this on to others. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
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Lovely so watch children doing group work & discuss among themselves. Lin Mun KSDS
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Lovely so watch children doing group work & discuss among themselves. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Alice guiding students of class 5-6 yrs old to do breathing meditation. Good way to calm our mind. Lin Mun KSDS
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Teacher Alice guiding students of class 5-6 yrs old to do breathing meditation. Good way to calm our mind. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Mien always encourage students to participate in class. Lin Mun KSDS
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Teacher Mien always encourage students to participate in class. Lin Mun KSDS
Appreciate all the great photographers who spend their time on Sunday dharma class to help us capture the nice moment. Lin Mun KSDS
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Appreciate all the great photographers who spend their time on Sunday dharma class to help us capture the nice moment. Lin Mun KSDS
Group activities during dharma class. The older students lead the younger ones. Good exercise to train their public speaking skills . Lin Mun KSDS
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Group activities during dharma class. The older students lead the younger ones. Good exercise to train their public speaking skills . Lin Mun KSDS
Looking Vegetarian Food?? Visit us at Kechara Oasis #travel #holiday #marriage #family ~ Guat Hee
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Looking Vegetarian Food?? Visit us at Kechara Oasis #travel #holiday #marriage #family ~ Guat Hee
We are at the 15th KL-PJ WEDDING FAIR from 28-30 April 2017, Mid Valley Exhibition Center. Come visit our booth for exciting promotions on vegetarian wedding banquets and registration of marriage services! ~ kecharaoasis.com ~ Guat Hee
15 hours ago
We are at the 15th KL-PJ WEDDING FAIR from 28-30 April 2017, Mid Valley Exhibition Center. Come visit our booth for exciting promotions on vegetarian wedding banquets and registration of marriage services! ~ kecharaoasis.com ~ Guat Hee
Pastor Gim Lee assisted by Kechara Puja Team, conducted a Dorje Shugden puja and blessings at a premise. Lucy Yap
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Pastor Gim Lee assisted by Kechara Puja Team, conducted a Dorje Shugden puja and blessings at a premise. Lucy Yap
Art expression using chalks and papers is an avenue for young children to cultivate positive perspective of life and connect with their artistic or creative side. Stella, KSDS
4 days ago
Art expression using chalks and papers is an avenue for young children to cultivate positive perspective of life and connect with their artistic or creative side. Stella, KSDS
Children as long as 2 years old are ready to learn up skills and attitude that will help them shape their life. When else will be best to instil them with good Dharma values if not since young? Stella, KSDS
4 days ago
Children as long as 2 years old are ready to learn up skills and attitude that will help them shape their life. When else will be best to instil them with good Dharma values if not since young? Stella, KSDS
Senior students of the children class of Kechara Sunday Dharma School had their class in the ghompa every Sunday. Stella, KSDS
4 days ago
Senior students of the children class of Kechara Sunday Dharma School had their class in the ghompa every Sunday. Stella, KSDS
Besides young Karlson and Ern Ern, there are new faces in Kechara Sunday Dharma School 2-4 years old. Stella, KSDS
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Besides young Karlson and Ern Ern, there are new faces in Kechara Sunday Dharma School 2-4 years old. Stella, KSDS
Kechara Sunday Dharma School students 5-6 years old making prostration to Lama Tsongkhapa at the beginning of the class every Sunday. Stella,KSDS
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Kechara Sunday Dharma School students 5-6 years old making prostration to Lama Tsongkhapa at the beginning of the class every Sunday. Stella,KSDS
@KecharaHouse tonite, 48 puja attendees filled the air with a loud chorus of prayer n mantra 2 Dorje Shugden n Setrap!  PHNee
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@KecharaHouse tonite, 48 puja attendees filled the air with a loud chorus of prayer n mantra 2 Dorje Shugden n Setrap! PHNee
A big Thank You to the kind volunteers and to Jace Chong!
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A big Thank You to the kind volunteers and to Jace Chong!
Make your weekend meaningful! Contact Jace Chong to volunteer in Kechara Forest Retreat for the aviaries.
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Make your weekend meaningful! Contact Jace Chong to volunteer in Kechara Forest Retreat for the aviaries.
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Thank you to our young volunteer to improve the life of the birds in our aviary!
English Level 2 Dharma Class, Pastor Han Nee started the Day 5 Lamrim, which is the Seven-Limbed Prayer with Homage and Prostration( 35 Confessional Buddha )  was extensively covered. -  Yew Seng
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Sunday Dharma class kids learning to take refuge with teacher Alice. Lucy Yap
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Sunday Dharma class kids learning to take refuge with teacher Alice. Lucy Yap
One of the outdoor activities for KSDS students is to exercise the drawing that near to the nature. Alice Tay, KSDS
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One of the outdoor activities for KSDS students is to exercise the drawing that near to the nature. Alice Tay, KSDS
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Teacher Jesvin explained the camp rules and regulations to the camper. Alice Tay, KSDS
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KSDS teachers and the young participants of WOAH Camp played & have fun together for this game, Self defense and attack. Alice Tay, KSDS
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Day break at Kechara Forest Retreat! Sunrise meditation during Inner Reflection Retreat, April 2017
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