Holy Relic Sites of China-Very interesting!

Aug 18, 2016 | Views: 991
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Buddha’s relic enshrined at a temple on Niushou Mountain in Nanjing.

Buddha’s relic enshrined at a temple on Niushou Mountain in Nanjing

In Buddhism, holy relics refer to the physical remains or the personal effects of Buddha Shakyamuni preserved for the purposes of veneration. Relics embody the spiritual qualities, compassion and wisdom of the Buddha. Buddhists believe that by making offerings and prayers to Buddha’s sacred relics, they will be blessed and protected. At the same time this allows the fruitioning of beneficial karmic imprints from previous lives, especially those related to the Buddhas and holy beings.

Throughout history, relics have played an important role in major world religions such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Shamanism and other religions. For example, in Christianity, sites with the presence of holy relics are major pilgrimage destinations for adherents of the Christian faith because it is believed that the relics can bestow protection and the intercession of the sanctified deceased.

In Buddhism, relics are venerated for similar reasons. After Buddha Shakyamuni entered clear light and was cremated, his relics were highly sought after by the eight royal families of the period. Therefore, in order to avoid disharmony, Buddha Shakyamuni’s holy relics were divided into 10 parts: eight from the body relics, one from the ashes of the Buddha’s cremation pyre and the other one from the container used to divide the relics. These relics were distributed among the eight royal families who promised to enshrine them in stupas and worship them.

The enshrinement of Buddha Shakyamuni’s sacred relics in China started with the tooth relic which is now housed in Lingguang Temple, Beijing. The acquisition of Buddha’s relics reached their peak during the Tang Dynasty. Over a period of 200 years, eight emperors of the Tang Dynasty oversaw this acquisition. These were Emperor Gaozong, Emperor Wuhou, Emperor Zhongzong, Emperor Suzong, Emperor Dezong, Emperor Xianzong, Emperor Yizong and Emperor Xizong. According to the Tang Dynasty’s records, China had 19 holy sites since the time of the Indian King Ashoka. These sites housed various relics of Buddha Shakyamuni. Unfortunately, only a handful of these sites exist today.

Therefore, holy relic sites are rare. Many Buddhists make it their priority to visit these precious relic sites located on and off the beaten path across China. Most of the sites are made famous by the display of Buddha Shakyamuni’s sacred relics, while others are sites that highlight precious Buddhist artefacts and statues. Pilgrimage sites where the Buddha’s relics are venerated attract an increasing number of followers from all over the world. A total of 10 holy sites of China are listed here in this article:

  1. Tooth relic at Lingguang Temple, Beijing
  2. Grand True Relic Pagoda at Famen Temple, Shaanxi
  3. Red Buddha relic discovered at Yunju Temple, Fangshan, Beijing
  4. Rare skull relic enshrined in Foding Palace, Nanjing
  5. Buddha’s bone relic at Ayuwang Temple, Ningbo
  6. Relics unearthed below the Leifeng Pagoda, Hangzhou
  7. Relics at Tianmen Mountain Temple, Hunan
  8. Relics at Yunyan Temple, Huqiu, Suzhou
  9. Relics at Ganlusi Temple, Zhenjiang
  10. Relics at Tian Tan Big Buddha, Lantau Island, Hong Kong

By making pilgrimages to these holy sites, spiritual aspirants will be able to make a connection with the spiritual qualities of the Buddha and the Buddhist saints in order to further strengthen their spiritual conviction. So while planning for your next holiday, consider incorporating one or more of the places shared here to make the trip both enjoyable and spiritually enriching. It is with this thought in mind, I wish to offer my heartfelt gratitude to His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche for the precious opportunity to share this information about holy relic sites of China on his blog. I would also like to extend my sincere appreciation to Valentina, Pastor Niral, Pastor Jean Ai and Pastor Adeline for their time, valuable advice, guidance, editing and uploading of this article.

Stella Cheang

 


 

1. Tooth Relic at Lingguang Temple

Buddha Shakyamuni’s tooth relic in Lingguang Temple

Buddha Shakyamuni’s tooth relic in Lingguang Temple

Lingguang Temple, or aptly known as the Temple of Divine Light, belongs to a group of eight Buddhist temples and monasteries scattered across the Cuiwei, Pingpo and Lushi hills at the foot of Beijing’s Western Hills. It houses one of the two precious Buddha Shakyamuni’s tooth relics found in modern times. The other tooth relic is enshrined in Sri Lanka. This 1,200-year-old Buddhist temple is situated in the famous Badachu (Eight Great Sites) at the foot of Beijing’s Western Hills and the place is praised as the most prominent among the eight, though it is not the largest.

According to written records, after Buddha Shakyamuni passed away, among the cremation ashes, four tooth relics were discovered, one of which was brought to Sri Lanka by the Buddha’s disciples. Another tooth relic was brought to Uddiyana (now known as Pakistan) and later to Yu Wen (today’s Hotan County in Xinjiang, China). In the middle of the 5th Century, the prominent monk Fa Xian traveled to Xinjiang and took the tooth relic back to the capital of the Southern Qi Dynasty, Jian Kang (now Nanjing).

After the Sui Dynasty was established, the tooth relic was sent to Chang’an and later moved to the capital (present-day Beijing) of the North Liao Dynasty (907 – 1125). Finally, it was preserved in the Zhao Xian Ta (Immortal-Solicited Pagoda) of Lingguang Temple in 1071.

Zhao Xian Ta (Immortal-Solicited Pagoda) of Lingguang temple

Zhao Xian Ta (Immortal-Solicited Pagoda) of Lingguang Temple

The octagonal Immortal-Solicited Pagoda is approximately 51m high and has 13 layers. Its base was constructed with white marble, reaching 2.7m above the ground. Within the hall of the pagoda temple is a seven-story structure, and within this structure is another hall in which a vajra seat and painted screen is placed. It is in this second hall where the Buddha tooth relic is now preserved inside a one-meter-high pure gold pagoda.

Today, the Immortal-Solicited Pagoda has become a symbol of Badachu. Whenever someone mentions Badachu Park, people think of the pagoda.

Basic information for tourists
Lingguang Temple’s operating hours are 05:00 to 19:30. Visitors can get there by taking city buses no. 347, 389, 622, 972 or 958 and get off at the nearest terminal, or take no. 489 bus and get off at the Badachu Stop.

 

2. Grand True Relic Pagoda at Famen Temple

The Famen Temple is located 110 kilometres west of Xi’an in Shaanxi Province. It was originally built by Emperor Ling of the Eastern Han Dynasty and has a 1,700-year history. Famen Temple was originally constructed in the 3rd Century to enshrine Buddha Shakyamuni’s holy relics. During that era, King Ashoka, after uniting India, divided the Buddha’s relics into 84,000 parts and distributed them to different places in order to promote Buddhism. All the places that received the Buddha’s relics were instructed to build pagodas to enshrine them.

Grand True Relic Pagoda at Famen Temple

Grand True Relic Pagoda at Famen Temple

Buddhism later became very popular during the Tang Dynasty, and many devotees extolled artefacts of Buddhism from ancient times. It is at this time the knuckle of the Buddha’s middle finger came into the possession of the Tang Emperors and was kept at Famen Temple in Xi’an city Shaanxi province. Famen Temple naturally became a royal temple and a sacred place that is admired because of the prized holy relic enshrined inside the temple pagoda. As a matter of fact, the temple pagoda was known as “Grand True Relic Pagoda” because it enshrined the only piece of finger bone relic of Buddha Shakyamuni. The temple was rebuilt during the Tang Dynasty to its largest scale that comprised of 24 courtyards with a capacity of 1000 people.

A rare piece of Buddha Shakyamuni’s skull enshrined at Foding Palace

The knuckle of the middle finger of Buddha’s holy remain

Sadly, half of the pagoda collapsed in August 1981 and in 1986, the government decided to rebuild it. The reconstruction began in February 1987. By May 1987, four relics were found after the opening of an underground palace. The finger bone of Buddha Shakyamuni, two white jade relics and another relic from a famed monk, along with 2,499 national treasures buried during the Tang Dynasty were uncovered after being buried for 1,113 years. The three relics are called “ghost relics” as they were placed together with “true relic” in order to protect the latter. The true relic appeared to be yellow-coloured, with bone-like secretory granules. It was identified by experts to be the true Buddha’s relics.

These unearthed treasures are of great importance in the historical authenticity of early Buddhism. Famen Temple was officially reopened in 1988 and an international Buddhist meeting was held in the same year to pay respect to Buddha’s relics.

Basic information for tourists
The operating hours are adjusted based on the season: from 1st March to 30th November, the temple opens from 08:30 to 19:00; from 1st December to 28th / 29th February, the opening hours are from 09:00 to 18:00. Famen Temple is located in Famen town, 10 kilometres north of Fufeng County. Visitors may want to consider taking Tourist Bus no. 2 at Xi’an Railway Station and getting off at Famensi Museum station. The bus departs at 08:00 and returns at 15:00. Bus tickets cost RMB25. Another alternative is to take Long-distance Bus at Xi’an West Bus Station.

 

3. Red Buddha Relic Discovered at Yunju Temple

The entrance to Yunju Temple

The entrance to Yunju Temple

Also fondly known as Temple of Cloud Dwelling in the West, Yunju Temple was first built in the early 7th Century. It is located in Fangshan District in the southwest of Beijing and is famous for the stone sutras. The temple contains a total of 12 pagodas from the Tang and Liao Dynasties and three tomb pagodas from the Qing Dynasty. Having been reconstructed and enlarged several times, the site became an architectural complex that consisted of five courtyards and six main halls. During the Sino-Japan War, the temple suffered great damage but was restored to its original glory after the war ended.

The Buddha’s relics at Yunju Temple are one of the “three precious” in China and attract worldwide attention. The other two are the Buddha’s sacred relics in Famen Temple and the Buddha’s tooth relic in Lingguang Temple.

The reliquary of the bone relic in Yunju Temple

The reliquary of the bone relic in Yunju Temple

The Red Buddha’s body relics at Yunju Temple were discovered in Leiyin Cave in 1981 and are the only ones of their kind treasured in a cave as the reliquary (instead of in a pagoda). In addition to the Red Buddha’s relic, two bone fragments believed to belong to Buddha Shakyamuni are enshrined at the site. The two bone fragments were unearthed under the Tiankai Pagoda in Fangshan District of Beijing.

Additional information
The temple showcases an extensive collection of Buddhist texts, of which the best known are the stone sutras. Work to engrave the stone sutras was started by the monk Jing Wan. After Venerable Jing Wan’s death, his work was continued by his students. 1,122 books and 3,572 volumes of Buddhist sutras were inscribed on 14,278 stone tablets. Visitors can see these tablets through the windows of the closet. The stone sutras escaped damage from the Sino-Japan War because they were buried underground.

Yunju Temple also houses a significant collection of paper Buddhist sutras and wooden Buddhist sutras. The collection of paper Buddhist sutras were either printed or handwritten during the time of the Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644), by Bhikshu Zu Hui. The sutras for which he used his tongue’s blood as ink are considered the most precious. The collection of wooden sutras named Long Zang (Dragon Tripitakas) date back to between 1733 to 1738.

Basic information for tourists
Yunju Temple operates from 08:30 to 17:00 in the summer and from 08:30 to 16:30 in the winter. Visitors can get there by bus no. 836 from Tianqiao in south of Beijing. Entrance tickets are priced at RMB40.

 

4. Rare skull relic enshrined in Foding Palace

A rare piece of Buddha Shakyamuni’s skull enshrined at Foding Palace

A rare piece of Buddha Shakyamuni’s skull enshrined at Foding Palace

A rare piece of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni’s skull has been permanently enshrined at Foding Palace in Niushou Mountain in China’s eastern Jiangsu province. The relic was unearthed in 2008 when archaeologists found a mausoleum among the ruins of Changgan Temple, which was built in the former Song Dynasty (420 – 479). The holy relic was enshrined at Qixia Temple before finally being moved to Foding Palace on 27th October 2015.

The reliquary, which is almost four feet high and one-and-a-half feet wide, matches the description of the reliquaries commissioned by King Ashoka to house the holy remains of Buddha Shakyamuni. According to written records, King Ashoka collected all the holy relics of Lord Buddha and stored them in pagoda-shaped reliquaries before distributing them to different parts of the world.

Basic information for tourists
Foding Palace is located in Niushou Mountain, Dongshanqiao Town, Jiangning District, Nanjing, China. There is an entrance fee of RMB10 per person to access the Niushou Mountain Forestry Park. It is open daily from 07:00.

 

5. Buddha’s Bone Relic at Ayuwang Temple

The Ayuwang (Ashoka) temple is located east of Ningbo in Zhejiang Province. The temple sits near the Luhua Peak of the Taibai mountains, one of China’s five important Buddhist mountains. It is the only remaining temple in China named after the Indian king and Buddhist proselytiser. The original temple was apparently built during the Taikang period of the Western Jin Dynasty in 282 CE, though traces of it have long disappeared. Its prized possession is a parietal bone of Buddha Shakyamuni. It is one of the reported 84,000 reliquaries made by King Ashoka, India’s major Buddhist patron. The reliquary is a seven-step stone stupa, about 20 inches high, placed in the Hall of Stupa.

The reliquary of the bone relic enshrined in Ayuwang Temple

The reliquary of the bone relic enshrined in Ayuwang Temple

According to historical records, King Ashoka, or the ‘King of Zhouli’ as he was known among the Chinese, reportedly considered the area of Ningbo as a place of peace and harmony. Soon Hui Lian, a senior monk, while searching for a place for a temple, heard a sound from the ground. On closer inspection, he found a hot spring and the temple miraculously appeared. The temple began to expand in the following centuries. Finally, during the reign of Emperor Liang Wudi (502 – 549), he renamed it “a yu wang”. Ayuwang Temple still carries the many ‘layers’ today characterised by expansion over the centuries.

The relic hall of Ayuwang Temple, Ningbo

The relic hall of Ayuwang Temple, Ningbo

In 1993, when the eastern part of Ayuwang Temple was refurbished, calligraphy from the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties were also discovered. The temple also has a unique calligraphy collection, including from Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty – a most prolific calligrapher and writer – who visited the site in the 18th Century.

Basic information for tourists
Ayuwang Temple is open for visitors from 08:00 to 16:00 daily. Take the city bus no. 556 or 558, and get off at Ayuwang Stop. Admission is free.

The location of Ayuwang Temple

The location of Ayuwang Temple

 

6. Relics unearthed underneath the Leifeng Pagoda

Leifeng Pagoda is an octagonal five-story tower on Sunset Hill south of the West Lake in Hangzhou, China. Originally constructed in the year 975 CE during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period under the instruction of King Qian Chu of Wuyue Kingdom to celebrate the birth of his son. The structure collapsed in 1924 but was rebuilt in 2002.

During the Ming Dynasty, Japanese pirates attacked Hangzhou. Suspecting the pagoda contained weapons, they burned its wooden elements, leaving only the brick skeleton, as can be seen from West Lake paintings of Ming Dynasty period.

The disrepair of Leifeng Pagoda in the 1920s

The disrepair of Leifeng Pagoda in the 1920s

Leifeng Pagoda was one of the 10 sites of the West Lake because of the Legend of the White Snake. Due to superstition that the bricks from the tower could repel illness or prevent miscarriage, many people stole the bricks to be ground into powder, further weakening the structure. Hence, on the afternoon of 25th September 1924, the pagoda finally collapsed.

In October 1999, the provincial and municipal governments decided to rebuild Leifeng Pagoda on top of the ruins of the old one. Since it was rumored for years that there was a mausoleum below the structure, a radar was used to investigate and validate its existence. On 11th March 2001, the mausoleum was excavated and many artefacts were found, most notably the gold- and silver-coated hair of the Buddha.

The new pagoda was opened on 25th October 2002, and it became a place of veneration because of the precious relics discovered in the underground chamber.

The Leifeng Pagoda in Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou

The Leifeng Pagoda in Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou

Basic information for tourists
Leifeng Pagoda has three types of operating hours according to the season: from 16th March to 30th April it is open from 08:00 – 19:00, from 1st May to 30th October it is opened from 08:00 – 20:00 and from 1st November to 15th March it is open from 08:00 – 17:30. The address of Leifeng Pagoda is 15 Nanshan Rd, Xihu, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China. Take bus line no. Y2, 4, Y6, Y9, 31, 51 (Inner Line), 52 (Outer Line), 87, 287, 291, 315, 334, 822, or the West Lake South Holiday Line, get off at the Jingsi Station, and walk to the site. The entrance fee for an adult is RMB40.

 

7. Relics at Tianmen Mountain Temple

Precious holy relics on display in Tianmen Mountain Temple

Precious holy relics on display in Tianmen Mountain Temple

Tianmen Mountain is located in the famous Zhangjiajie city, central China’s Hunan Province. It is known as one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. The floating mountain illustrated in the movie Avatar was inspired by the stunning view from the ‘Heaven Door’ at Tianmen Mountain.

The Tianmen Mountain Temple was first built during the Tang Dynasty as the centre of Buddhism in the area of Western Hunan. The present Tianmen Mountain Temple was rebuilt on the premise of the original site on an area of more than 10,000m sq. It adopted an official style of the Qing Dynasty and the architecture of the Temple is in the style of the grand classical houses of the Qing Dynasty. The Temple is located in the mountain hollow with a magnificent view.

The view of Tianmen Mountain Temple from afar

The view of Tianmen Mountain Temple from afar

The temple hosts three relics of Buddha Shakyamuni, and his heart disciples, Venerable Shariputra and Venerable Maudgalyayana. These relics were offered to Tianmen Mountain Temple by the Lumbini Chinese Temple (Zhonghua Temple) on 23rd April 2012.

Basic information for tourists
Tianmen Mountain is located south of Zhangjiajie city. It opens daily from 08:00 to 16:00. Entrance fees are seasonal: from March to November at RMB258 and from December to February at RMB225.

A map showing the location of Tianmen Mountain of Zhangjiajie city in Hunan Province

A map showing the location of Tianmen Mountain of Zhangjiajie city in Hunan Province

 

8. Relics at Yunyan Temple

Tiger Hill, also known as Surging Sea Hill, is a large hillock covering about 3.5 acres (14,100m sq) and only 118 feet (36m) in height. One of the highlights of Tiger Hill is the pagoda that stands on the hill’s summit. It is famously known as the Pagoda of the Yunyan Temple. As the oldest pagoda in the vicinity of Suzhou, it has come to be a symbol of the city and has the distinction of being China’s Leaning Tower.

Yunyan Temple in Huqiu, Suzhou

Yunyan Temple in Huqiu, Suzhou

Built during the Northern Song Dynasty (959 – 961), it is a seven-story octagonal tower following the style of the timber pagodas built during the early period of Tang Dynasty (618 – 907). It is 158 feet (48m) high and for the past 400 years, it has leaned 3.59 degrees to the northwest. In this temple, the legendary ‘secret-coloured ceramic’ artefacts were discovered.

The ‘secret-coloured ceramic’ is a very fine porcelain vessel from the ancient kingdom of Yue which was located in today’s Zhejiang province. It was made for imperial use only. The vessel is 8.9 cm high, sitting on a saucer of 6.6 cm high. The diametre of the upper rim is 14.9 cm, and the bottom is 9.3 cm. Lotus petals were carved on the outer surface of the bowl and the saucer. From the unglazed bottom, one can see the piece is made from very fine clay, and this gives the ware a very pure and even texture. The olive-green glaze brings out a warm lustre similar to jade.

The precious ‘secret-coloured ceramic’ relic

The precious ‘secret-coloured ceramic’ relic

Unfortunately, the recipe to make the ceramic was lost during Tang Dynasty. A poem by Lu Guimeng suggests that this type of ceramic has a green glaze like the “essence of trees from a thousand hills”. It is said to be coloured in a “similar way to Yue celadon, but brighter and lighter”.

Basic information for tourists
The operating hours for Yunyan Temple is from 07:30 to 17:30. Visitors may take bus no. 32 or express line 3 and get off at Huqiu Beimen (North Gate of Tiger Hill) Station. Another alternative is to take bus no. 146 or tourism bus no. 1 or 2 and get off at Huqiu Station. There are admission charges; RMB80 for the months of April, May, July, August, September and October and RMB60 for the months of January, February, March, June, November and December.

 

9. Relics at Ganlusi Temple

Ganlusi Temple is located in the beautiful Beigushan Hill. This so-called temple is actually more of a residential hall instead of a Buddhist temple. Ganlusi Temple and Beigushan Hill is mentioned the Three Kingdoms literature. During this period, Liu Bei, the King of the Shu State, allied with one of his rivals, the King of the Wu State, by marrying his sister in a small palace (Ganlusi Temple) on this hill and used this alliance to fight with the King of the Wei State. The marriage ceremony took place in Ganlusi Temple, which was actually not a Buddhist temple but a small imperial palace during that time.

The Ganlusi Temple of Zhenjiang in China

The Ganlusi Temple of Zhenjiang in China

In history, many celebrities, socialites and even kings and emperors came to the hill to commemorate these historic figures and places, and they left an enormous amount of historic relics, including calligraphy, poems, scriptures and architecture. Ganlusi Temple was initially erected during the Three Kingdoms period in 222 – 280 CE. It was moved to the Rear Peak of Beigushan Hill from its original place. The temple was destroyed by fire during Yuan Dynasty period and destroyed again by war in the later years. The current structures were re-erected by a local authority in 1890 CE during Qing Dynasty period.

In the 1960s, refurbishment works were carried out on Ganlusi Temple. An underground chamber was discovered at 3.5 feet under the base of Ganlusi Temple and along with it, an unprecedented large numbers of pearl-like precious relics. Out of the 700 pieces of relics, 11 pieces of relics were identified by experts as Buddha Shakyamuni’s.

Basic information for tourists
Ganlusi Temple’s opening hours are from 06:00 to 19:00. The address is 3 Dongwu Road, Zhenjiang, Jiangsu 212000, China. Visitors can take a bus no. 4 and get off at Beigushan Hill. Entrance tickets are priced at RMB32.

 

10. Relics at Tian Tan Big Buddha

The world's tallest outdoor seated Buddha; Tian Tan Big Buddha Statue

The world’s tallest outdoor seated Buddha; Tian Tan Big Buddha Statue

Po Lin Monastery is the home of three big golden Buddha statues as well as a 34-metre high, 250-ton bronze Buddha statue called the Tian Tan Buddha. Completed in 1993, it is the world’s tallest outdoor seated bronze Buddha and attracts around 1,000,000 visitors per year. The Big Buddha symbolises the harmonious relationship between man and nature, and people and faith.

The statue was constructed from 202 bronze pieces. In addition to the exterior components, there is a strong steel framework inside to support the heavy load. Visitors have to climb 268 steps to reach the Buddha. The Buddha’s right hand is raised, representing the removal of afflictions, while the left rests on his lap in a gesture of generosity. He faces north, which is unique among the great Buddha statues, as all others face south.

Tian Tan Big Buddha Statue sits atop the peak of Mount Muk Yue in Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Tian Tan Big Buddha Statue sits atop the peak of Mount Muk Yue in Lantau Island, Hong Kong

One of the most renowned events of this place is the Buddhist Relics Exhibition, which is held regularly at the monastery. Many precious Buddhist relics, including the Longcang Sutra and the Monk Huayan Preaching Buddhist Sutras (a painting) are displayed there. There is also a bell in the exhibition hall, which is engraved with figures of Buddhas and the Buddhist sutras. It is rung every seven minutes, 108 times per day. It is said that the power of the bell can ‘cure’ people’s 108 kinds of afflictions.

Basic information for tourists
Po Lin Monastery’s opening hours are from 09:00 to 18:00. It is on Ngong Ping Plateau, Tung Chung Town, Lantau Island. Visitors can catch the ferry from Central Pier 6 (MTR Hong Kong Station Exit E1. Walk through IFC mall) to Mui Wo, then take bus 2. Or from MTR Tung Chung Station Exit B, take bus 23 from Tung Chung Town Centre.

A map showing the location of Tian Tan Big Buddha on Lantau Island

A map showing the location of Tian Tan Big Buddha on Lantau Island

References:

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  • http://www.zhangjiajietourguide.com/attraction-p2-tianmen-mountain-national-forest-park.html
  • http://selfplannedtrip.com/travel-blog/tianmen-mountain/
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leifeng_Pagoda
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relics_associated_with_Buddha#Relics_in_China
  • http://english.shaanxi.gov.cn/articleCulture/culture/historicalrelics/201212/30091_1.html
  • http://zhenjiang.jiangsu.net/attraction/premier.php?name=Ganlusi_Temple&city=Zhenjiang&id=127
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiger_Hill_Pagoda
  • https://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/jiangsu/suzhou/tiger_hill.htm
  • http://www.chinahighlights.com/beijing/attraction/lingguang-temple.htm
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  • http://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/buddhism.htm
  • http://sputniknews.com/art_living/20160702/1042325764/buddha-skull-recovered-china.html
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  • http://europe.chinadaily.com.cn/culture/2012-12/17/content_16025905.htm
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  • http://www.itourbeijing.com/china-travel/ningbo-guide/king-asoka-temple.htm
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  • http://www.airporters.net/zhejiang/ayuwang-temple.html

 

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26 Responses to Holy Relic Sites of China-Very interesting!

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  1. Datuk May on Apr 9, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    Relics of Buddha Shakymuni have always intrigued me as to how they were preserved and certified. But it had never occurred to me to doubt that they exist. What intrigued me most was how can there be so many relics that can be viewed by us even today in the 21st century, 2,600 years after Buddha Shakymuni.

    This article clearly explains how the relics were preserved and distributed by King Asoka to 84,000 places in order to propagate Buddhism and for Buddhists to be blessed by being in the presence of the buildings such as pagodas and stupas built to house them.

    Visiting such holy sites in China is a great blessing of a pilgrimage.

  2. Seth on Jan 7, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Dear friends, there is also a Buddha tooth relic in Singapore, very beautifully enshrined, respected and appreciated by the people and the government of Singapore. It’s very near to us, so it’s a great blessing!

  3. Wan Wai Meng on Nov 29, 2016 at 12:27 am

    The amount of Buddha relics in China is a staggering indication of how this land China had been pervaded by Buddhism. China was a land that was heavily influenced by the Buddha Dharma, across all stations and levels of society.

    May Buddhism once again be infused by the Buddha Dharma and produce dharma teachers for the benefit of the Chinese.

  4. Anne Ong on Sep 24, 2016 at 10:05 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche and Stella for this sharing about 10 holy sites of China having the Buddha Shakyamuni’s sacred relic. It’s really wonderful to see these relics around China. It’s really like going on a virtual pilgrimage tour! Six places stood out to me from this post.
    1. Tooth Relic at Lingguang Temple
    2. Grand True Relic Pagoda at Famen Temple
    3. Red Buddha Relic Discovered at Yunju Temple
    5. Buddha’s Bone Relic at Ayuwang Temple
    4. Rare skull relic enshrined in Foding Palace
    9. Relics at Ganlusi Temple

    I sincerely hope we could all help to create the cause for the relics of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen to be in Kechara Forest Retreat in the future for his lineage to grow again. _/\_
    https://twitter.com/tsemtulku/status/779518547072421888

  5. Catherine Lee on Sep 5, 2016 at 11:46 am

    Thank you Stella for writing this informative article. An eye opener for me to learn about the meaning of holy relics preservation and it’s interesting to get to know more about the various holy relics sites located within China.

  6. Alice Tay on Aug 30, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche and Stella for this sharing about 10 holy sites of China having the Buddha Shakyamuni’s sacred relic.

    From this post, 2 places stood out to me :
    1. Relics at Tian Tan Big Buddha, Lantau Island, Hong Kong
    2. Relics unearthed below the Leifeng Pagoda

    The 2 places as mentioned above become more famous because of many of the films and televisions’ producers especially from Hong Kong and China like to choose these 2 places as the shooting location. Therefore, the exposure for these 2 places are become more as compared to the others.

    Everyone is encouraged to follow the guidelines from this post to visit these holy places. Through the visit to make offerings and prayers to Buddha’s sacred relics, may everyone be blessed and protected by the Buddha and have the opportunity to plant the karmic seeds to learn and practice dharma in order to achieve the qualities as Buddha.

  7. Pastor KH Ng on Aug 25, 2016 at 2:46 pm

    What I noticed is that China is really preserving the Buddhist sites very well. More and more of these sites are preserved, promoted and maintained very well. This is unique because of the abundance and rich Buddhist traditions in China.

    I rejoice and every time I think of China I think of these magnificent sites in my mind’s eye.

  8. Pastor Adeline on Aug 25, 2016 at 5:59 am

    China was once a Buddhist country that gives rise to erudite masters and eminent monks who taught and preached the dharma well. As a result, the emperors also took on Buddhism and preserve the dharma by supporting the monastic educations and system. Realizing that the Buddhadharma was taught by Buddha Shakyamuni and the significance of the Buddha’s relics, historically, many emperors of China started to invite the Buddha’s and His disciples’ relics, while others maintained them. Without their efforts, we wouldn’t be able to bless by any of them today!

    As we are in the kaliyuga where dharma is less appreciated by many, those who come across dharma or practice it are mostly superficial and minimum. By going to pilgrimage sites with the Buddha’s relics, we received the powerful blessings and purification for dharma to take effects in our mindstream.

    While visiting the holy sites is beneficial, the best pilgrimage is the home of our spiritual guide where the living Buddha resides. When we are around our spiritual guide, we receive teachings directly that expedite our purification and transformation process. We should make use of such rare opportunities to learn and improve. Personally, I prefer to venerate my teacher when He is alive than to venerate His relics after He passed.

  9. Paul Yap on Aug 24, 2016 at 10:47 pm

    These holy sites are such a wonderful place to make pilgrimage to, receiving blessing and purify immense karma. The pilgrimage is about much more then just the destination however, the journey itself is actually the most important part of the practice. Pilgrimage is traditionally done on foot and often takes weeks or months to complete. The pilgrimage, like the practice of meditation, is an opportunity to spend a significant amount of time concentrating on self purification.

  10. sweekeong on Aug 24, 2016 at 2:47 pm

    Thank you for the wealth of well researched information. I didn’t know China has such abundance of holy relics for everyone to visit and make prayers to. I am never a tourist myself but this one of the good reason to travel.

  11. sonny tan on Aug 24, 2016 at 12:21 pm

    Thank you Stella for this article on relics, it is well known to all Buddhist that relics are found during cremation of very high masters, enlightened beings, Rinpoche and high lamas.
    When I was with my previous religious order they held a relic ceremony where close to five thousand attended. I cannot remember which religious person’s relic it was but it was said to be very old and very precious. The relic was encased in a stupa and it was up on the stage beyond the reach of the attendees.
    During the ceremony the head abbot recited some prayers and the necessary Buddhist salutation and after a while the relics began to dance up and down in the stupa. The whole dancing was captured in live telecast in the auditorium, it lasted a few seconds, it is really stupendous and defies human logic how this lifeless thing dances.
    I have also seen many displays of Buddhist relics of the famous masters where some of the cremated parts of the bone have turned into white shinning crystal like substances.

  12. Sofi on Aug 24, 2016 at 6:29 am

    Thank you Stella for this informative article on the relics at the various sites in China. You provided very good details right down to the opening times and how to reach the place of interest. I wish I was able to read your article soon as I was at the foot of Tianmen Mountain temple and did not make the effort to climb the steps up to the temple. I thought that the attraction was the hole in the mountain that jet planes could fly through. The tour guide mentioned that the steps were steep and he also said a man from Singapore fell to his death due to the slight drizzle that made the steps slippery. As it was drizzling, majority of us decided that view the hole from a far is good enough. Had I known that the temple up the steps had Buddha’s relic, I would most certainly attempted the climb. Would be worth it for the blessings!

    Now with these knowledge of where some of the relics are located, I will be able to visit the temples holding such precious blessings when I next have the chance to visit China. May the Buddha’s relics holding such potent energy bless those viewing by triggering of their imprints for the Dharma.

  13. Jason on Aug 22, 2016 at 2:18 am

    This is a very informative write up which will inspire more people to know about Buddhism especially in Buddha Relic field. There were so many temples in China which enshrined Buddha’s relic.I think is the time to do pilgrimage on these temples.
    I hope can visit all these temples in my coming trip.
    Thanks Stella for this inspiring write up.

    Jason

  14. Sock Wan on Aug 21, 2016 at 5:58 pm

    Thank you Stella for this compilation on the locations of the Buddha’s relics. It’s so interesting that so many relics are now in China, and it is no wonder that Chinese culture has so much Buddhism influence.

    To pay homage to a holy site or relic is not a guarantee to enlightenment, because we still have to put in effort to put Buddha’s teachings in practice in order to gain realisation. However paying homage to a holy site or relic is to remind us of how much difficulties Buddha had gone through in the process of gaining realisation of how we can be liberated from sufferings. Thus, we should not give up easily no matter how tough the journey to liberation is. In addition, we also get positive vibes from these holy sites or items so that we can gain more and deeper realisation on Buddha’s teachings.

    • Pastor David Lai on Aug 22, 2016 at 10:47 pm

      Dear Sock Wan,
      It’s more than just positive vibes. Haha! We gain a powerful blessing of the Buddha at the site of his relics and powerful purification as well. The blessing plants seeds for the Dharma to open in our mindstream and especially if we make powerful Dharmic aspirations at these sites and they will open at a later time when the karma is ripe.

      Since most of our Dharma practice is very little or superficial, going for pilgrimage will be a powerful blessing for us. However, in the end, the most powerful place of pilgrimage is not these temple relics but the home of our spiritual teacher. If our devotion is stable and strong enough, our guru’s abode has the most powerful blessings on our mindstream.

      • Wei Theng on Aug 25, 2016 at 8:38 pm

        Thank you Pastor David for sharing the advantages of getting the blessings from holy relics and pilgrimage so that it will plant the seeds for us to get closed to Dharma or help us to open up our Dharma seeds soonest as well as purification.

        When I went to pilgrimage at Nepal early this year, I was asked to make strong aspirations & motivation and do a lot of offerings while I was at the pilgrimage sites, whether it is for ourselves or others.

        You brought up a very important point that wherever our Guru is, that’s the most powerful place of pilgrimage. I am so blessed that I am at our Guru’s mandala at Kechara Forest Retreat that has a lot of holy relics and healing energy as well as blessings for me to advance spiritually.

        Last but not least, would like to thank Stella and Rinpoche for this article that has very complete information about the temples with holy relics in China. Hope I can be there one day too.

        p/s: If you are interested to know more about the pilgrimage trip organized by Kechara, you can click this link to see some of the pictures and contact Kechara Front for the next available trip. http://www.kechara.com/travel/news/blessed-and-fruitful-nepal-pilgrimage-trip/

  15. JP on Aug 21, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    Dear Stella,

    Thank you for the interesting article. I didn’t realise China has so many holy relics! What I noticed is that China is very good in keeping track of history and has a culture of restoring historical buildings. China is very blessed to have possession of Lord Buddha’s holy relics.

    For those who like to travel, it’ll be even more beneficial if they include visiting these holy places so that seeds of enlightenment are planted in their mind stream.

    Best regards,
    JP

  16. Echeah on Aug 21, 2016 at 4:04 pm

    Thanks Stella for the comprehensive research on this. Certainly, they will be wonderful places to visit in future. Even the remains of the bodies of enlightened beings can continue to bless and benefit long after they had entered clear light.

  17. William Chua on Aug 21, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    China is a place where Buddhism spread after the passing of Buddha. It is a place with many holy places like Mount Wu Tai, Mount Emei etc. However, the temples listed here are also very holy as it contains holy relics of the Buddha. This article provides information that is insightful to travellers who wants to go on a pilgrimage. Before this, I have not heard or know any of these temples.

    I hope to visit these 10 temples in the near future.

  18. Fong on Aug 21, 2016 at 1:05 am

    Tianmen Mountain Temple houses three relics of Buddha Shakyamuni, and his heart disciples, Venerable Shariputra and Venerable Maudgalyayana. I loved the pictures of Tianmen mountains from the first moment i saw it. And, to know that there are these precious relics there is amazing. This is the one place to visit if unable to visit all the sites mentioned above.

    But, I guess, all these places that house the various holy relics make great pilgrimage sites and places that we should aspire to visit.

    Thanks for the wonderful information contained in this article.

  19. Edwin Tan on Aug 20, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    Dear Stella and Rinpoche,

    Thank you for such informative article about the holy, relic sites throughout China.

    China is a vast country and I am sure there are many more temples that house precious relics from Lord Buddha.

    I will definitely want to visit all the sites mentioned.

    Thank you.

  20. samfoonheei on Aug 20, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    Wow….interesting and informative article..of.Holy Relic Sites in China .Did’nt know there is so many Holy Relic found in China till i read these.Amazing there is 10 holy sites of China that hosts Holy Relic..I was in Tianmen Mountain south of Zhangjiajie city 3 years back but did not realize that the temple did hosts 3 relics of Buddha Shakyamuni, and his heart disciples, Venerable Shariputra and Venerable Maudgalyayana.Did visited a few temples there but not sure if i have visited the one mentioned. It would be wonderful to know earlier and visit it ….Well now after knowing where those Holy Relic is , i do hope to visit and see it one day.
    Thank you Stella and the hard working team for sharing this interesting article.

  21. So Kin Hoe (KISG) on Aug 18, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this interesting post to bless our minds and creating the causes for us to visit the holy relic sites of China. Thank you Stella Cheang for putting the effort and time to compose the rich facts of Buddha Shakyamuni’s relics and other enlightened beings’ relics located at the 10 holy sites in China. These 10 holy relic sites of China has gone through many revolutions during the Chinese Kingdoms and yet, the Buddha Shakyamuni’s relics as well as other enlightened beings’ relic can be found, restored and maintained until today to benefit and bless many sentient beings of our current age with the compassion and kindness from the Buddha since more than 2500 years ago. All the transportation details provided are very beneficial for those travelers who seek for spiritual wisdom and blessings. I am always drawn to the history of ancient China and would like to create the causes and opportunities to visit the holy relic sites in China or other parts of the world. May many people able to visit and pay homage to these holy relics for blessings and protection in spiritual practice.

    Thank you with folded hands,
    kin hoe

  22. Rei on Aug 18, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    This is amazing relic tourist guide! wish to visit all this places when have time. Thanks!

    • Stella Cheang on Aug 18, 2016 at 3:53 pm

      Hi Rei,
      It is very beneficial to venerate these holy relics sites not just for leisure sightseeing but also to get blessing for yourself and your family members too.

      • Rei on Aug 18, 2016 at 9:56 pm

        Yes. We went to Hongfa Temple in shenzhen and Guiyuan Temple in Wuhan.

        I make a wish and pray for guidance of my life from Buddha. 🙂

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  • nut4all
    Sunday, Apr 30. 2017 07:03 AM
    and stopped animal sacrifice at these temples. http://www.drukpa.com/about-us/our-yogis/the-three-divine-madmen 99%ppl focus on jab jum DrukpaKunley…
    [no sender]
  • nut4HE25TRinp!o
    Sunday, Apr 30. 2017 01:54 AM
    @tsemtulku
    My favorite Mahasiddha is Naropa….Let explain few !from4incarnation DRUKPAone MADe split!forTWO!!DRUKPA(HEMIS-ladakh)&SHABDRUNG(relung monastery Tibet site) .later SHABDRUNG split for3 body speach MIND! ( i m not certain order) SHABDRUNGS ARE!!! NamkhaiN0rbu RINPOCHE YES!! HH SHABDRUNG controversial in BHUTAN home jail!by urgyen trinley can!idDAYE&TaklungShabrung .. Recently with Dalai our monk seen !
    [no sender]
  • Alice Tay
    Sunday, Apr 30. 2017 12:16 AM
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this and I was touched by this story very much. I personally think that this faithful dog must has very close karmic connection with its owner and it know that the owner is died. Furthermore, animals are very sensitive to our energies and mind states. So, if we are loving kindness and compassion, they can feel our love and care.

    As such, we must treat the animals like humans too. Not to harm them because humans can be reborn as animals and animals can be reborn as humans. We have to accept that humans and animals are interconnected and just like a family.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Saturday, Apr 29. 2017 11:49 PM
    Spiritual practice is definitely much more than doing good for others. When we practice “spirituality” without religion and from our own understanding, how sure are we that we are on the right track? When we practice spiritual with the guide of religion, we will certain progress and much easily to attain higher levels. Thank you, Rinpoche for this teaching.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/can-we-just-be-spiritual-but-not-religious.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Saturday, Apr 29. 2017 10:56 PM
    When we truly love and care for another being like a family, whether this other being is a dog or cat, a child or a stranger, it will break our heart when it is gone. Many people may not be capable of this emotion towards a pet but as we evolved, we will realize we are capable to develop such feelings for animals. It is common in the west to have pets cemetery because of this reason. Thank you for this article, Rinpoche.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/why-losing-a-dog-can-be-harder-than-losing-a-relative-or-friend.html
  • Lin Mun
    Saturday, Apr 29. 2017 03:09 PM
    Interesting info and article about werewolves. I never knew about its origins and the various wolves existence until I read this. I have thus far know about werewolves only from the movies and the famous twilight show. But one thing I noticed from the articles is the gruesome manner in killing the person (or suspected werewolves). Some were cursed to be a werewolves. There just so much anger, violence and killing in the whole process, which probably the reason why werewolves are known to kill and hurt human and other animals.

    Anyway, whether we believe the existence of werewolf is true or not, I believe that there are other forms of beings in world. And we should not handle or deal with other beings with violence and anger.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/paranormal/werewolves-the-shapeshifters.html#comment-744320
  • 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

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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,
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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.
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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
4 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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ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

A section for you to clarify your Dharma questions with Kechara’s esteemed pastors.

Just post your name and your question below and one of our pastors will provide you with an answer.

Scroll down and click on "View All Questions" to view archived questions.

  • 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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