The Sakya Lineage & Dorje Shugden

By | Mar 20, 2016 | Views: 4,120
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Dorje Shugden has a long history of practice within the holy Sakya Lineage. Click to enlarge

Dear friends,

It is a well-known fact that Dorje Shugden has a long history of association and practice within the Sakya School of Tibetan Buddhism. In fact, Dorje Shugden was first enthroned and propitiated within the Sakya School before becoming a widespread protector practice within the Gelug tradition.

The account of how this came to be was told beautifully by Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in his writings on Dorje Shugden. That is why in our tradition, we request Dorje Shugden to come forth from the great Sakya monastery when we engage in his pujas today. This can be seen in the invocation verses of Dorje Shugden puja that was composed by Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche.

There are however claims made by certain parties these days that Dorje Shugden’s practice within the Sakya tradition was only a minor practice and that it has disappeared completely. Curious to find out more, I did a bit of research and I found that Dorje Shugden is not just a minor practice but actually a major protector practice within the Sakya tradition.

Dorje Shugden was one of their main protector practices and considered an emanation of Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion (an early Sakya belief). In fact, two of the Sakya Trizins were even considered incarnations of Dorje Shugden. How can a spirit incarnate as a Sakya throne holder? The evidence is clear that Dorje Shugden is not a minor practice and he is not a spirit either. Do read further to check out what I have discovered through my research.

Pastor David

www.davidlai.me

 

Overview of Tibetan Buddhism

Buddhism has a particularly long history in Tibet. It first entered Tibet during the reign of Emperor Songtsen Gampo around 650 CE. It was a century later that Buddhism began to seep deeper into the fabric of Tibetan civilization. This occurred during the period between the reigns of Trisong Detsen in 775 CE and Tri Ralpachen in 838 CE.

Emperor Songtsen Gampo and his wives, Princess Bhrikuti of Nepal (viewer

There was a decline in Buddhism directly after this period due to the reign of King Langdharma (838 – 842 CE) who actively sought to exterminate Buddhism from Tibet. He was to be the last Tibetan king and upon his death, Tibet entered into a 200-year dark age during which there was no centralized system of rule and no patrons of the Dharma either. However, Buddhism somehow managed to survive through this challenging time.

From the 900 to 1200 CE there was a revival of Buddhism due to the lively exchange between Tibetan translators who travelled to India and Indian masters that made the journey to Tibet. By the 14th century, Buddhism in Tibet had become systematized into the four major Schools of Tibetan Buddhism that we know today, namely the Nyingma, Sakya, Kagyu and Gelug. However, all four schools trace their origins back to the historical founder and fully enlightened one, Buddha Shakyamuni.

An outline of the Sakya tradition of Tibetan Buddhism

 

Introduction to the Sakya Tradition

The great origins of the Sakya teachings is traced back to the Indian Mahasiddha Virupa of the 9th Century. In the scriptures he has several other names, including Birwapa, and his life is recounted as one of the greatest of the 84 Mahasiddhas in terms of miraculous attainments.

Virupa, Indian Mahasiddha. The origins of the Sakya Tradition stem back to Virupa

His main teachings are called Lamdre, which literally means the ‘Path and the Fruit’ teachings. Lamdre forms the main backbone of the teachings within the Sakya tradition. These teachings were brought into Tibet by the Indian scholar Gayadhara (994-1043 CE) and were translated by his Tibetan disciple and translator, Drogmi Lotsawa Shakya Yeshe (992 – 1072 CE). Drogmi Lotsawa in turn transmitted these precious teachings to his main disciple Khon Konchok Gyalpo (1034-1102 CE). In 1073 CE, Khon Konchok Gyalpo founded the Sakya monastery in the Tsang region of central Tibet. It was named Sakya, which meant ‘grey earth’ due to the colour of the surrounding soil.

The 3rd holder of the Sakya throne, Kunga Nyingpo. Click to enlarge

Thus, the Sakya lineage was born and is closely linked to the Khon family lineage, who are believed to be celestial beings. The Sakya tradition was established and proliferated by five great early Sakya masters – Sachen Kunga Nyingpo (1092-1158 CE), his two sons Sonam Tsemo (1142-1182 CE) and Jetsun Drakpa Gyaltsen (1147-1216 CE), his grandson Sakya Pandita (1182-1251 CE) and the Sakya Pandita’s nephew Chogyal Pakpa (1235-1280 CE). The Sakya lamas became so famous that the Mongol emperors of China became their patrons. In 1253 CE, the Mongol emperor of China, Kublai Khan conferred the dominion of Tibet upon his lama, Chogyal Pakpa. The Sakya rule of Tibet during this period lasted for a century.

An outline of the Sakya lineage

Later, in the 14th century, Tishri Kunga Lodro Gyaltsen (1299-1327 CE) who was the eldest grandson of Sakya Pandita’s brother established four dynastic houses, of which only Ducho ladrang has survived to this day. In the 18th century, Ducho Ladrang was split between two ‘palaces’, Drolma Podrang and Phunstok Podrang. Pema Dudul Wangchuk established Drolma Podrang and Phuntsok Podrang was established by his youngest son, Kunga Rinchen. Ever since then, the leadership in the Khon Family and the throne holders of the Sakya School alternate between the Drolma and Phuntsok Podrang. The throne holders of the Sakya School are known by the title ‘Sakya Trizin’.

One of the founding fathers of the Sakya tradition, Jetsun Drakpa Gyeltsen who was the 5th Sakya Trizin. Click to enlarge.

 

Special Teachings of the Sakyas

The teachings on the Lamdre, the ‘Path and Fruit’, form the main core of the Sakya teachings. The Mahasiddha Virupa originally derived the Lamdre teachings from the Hevajra Root Tantra. The Lamdre system essentially expounds a view that the result of its practice is encompassed within the path itself. The root text for the Lamdre teachings is the Vajra Verses by the Mahasiddha Virupa and various commentaries by Sachen Kunga Nyingpo, Jetsun Drakpa Gyeltsen and so forth.

Maharakta Ganapati, one of the deities from the 13 Golden Dharmas of the Sakya Tradition

The 13 Golden Dharmas are a special cycle of initiations that are especially treasured by the great Sakya lineage holders. These initiations originate from various sources in India and were compiled by the great Sachen Kunga Nyinpo. In the past, those seeking these initiations would offer lots of gold as an offering in reflection of how highly prized these teachings are. Hence, it became known as the 13 Golden Dharmas. The 13 consist of Three Vajrayogini initiations – the Naro, Indra and Maitri traditions, the Three Great Red Ones (Marpo Kor Sum) – Kurukulle, Maharakta Ganapati and Takiraja, Three Small Red Ones (Marchung Kor Sum) – Kurukulle, Red Vasudhara and Tinuma and the four additional empowerments – Singhananda, Shabala Garuda, Black Manjushri and Red Dzambala.

In addition to that, there are several other important Higher Tantric systems that play a major role in the Sakya School besides the Vajrayogini Tantras already featured in the 13 Golden Dharmas. These include the Hevajra, Vajrakilaya and Guhyasamaja Tantras. Hence, the important wisdom protectors propitiated in the lineage are Panjaranata Mahakala (the main protector of the Hevajra Tantras), Citipati (the protectors of the Vajrayogini Tantras), and Four-Faced Mahakala (the protector of the Guhyasamaja Tantras).

An outline of the relationship of the Sakya Protectors, including Dorje Shugden on the left

On the other hand, there are several other general protectors such as Palden Lhamo, Ekajati, and Chamsing – a protector practice proliferated by Sachen Kunga Nyingpo. Besides that, Dorje Shugden, Setrap and Tsi’u Marpo (Kache Marpo) are propitiated as the Three Kings or Gyalpo Sum. The last would be the three Bamo witches, who are unenlightened oath-bound protectors that are unique to the Sakya School.

 

Introduction to Dorje Shugden in the Sakya Tradition >>

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Introduction to Dorje Shugden

in the Sakya Tradition

In our tradition of Dorje Shugden’s fulfillment (kangsol) puja, the invocation of Dorje Shugden begins with the recitation of a special prayer. In the invocation prayer, one of the sites that we call upon Dorje Shugden to come forth from is the Sakya temple at Mug Chung. It is well known to many practitioners that Dorje Shugden was first practiced within the great Sakya tradition.

Dorje Shugden Tanag or Dorje Shugden riding a horse. This form is a popular depiction of Dorje Shugden within the Sakya lineage.

In this article, we will be exploring the origins of Dorje Shugden’s practice within this tradition. According to Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche‘s text Music Delighting the Ocean of Protectors, the first thought of the high lama Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen after arising as the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden was his lama, Panchen Lobsang Chokyi Gyeltsen (1570–1662). Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen recalled his lama’s kindness through the innumerable advice, teachings, transmissions and initiations that he had received. Therefore, he traveled to Tashi Lhunpo monastery in Shigatse with the intention to pay homage to his lama and to be enthroned as the protector of the monastery.

Upon arriving at the monastery, he beheld the Eight Horse Lords of Vaishravana who seemed to be holding hands along the circumambulation path encircling Tashi Lhunpo in a protective manner, thus indicating that it was not the right time to enter the monastery. He realized that it was more auspicious to travel to Sakya instead and so, he immediately took off and traveled to Sakya instead due to affinity made during his previous incarnation as Sakya Pandita. But later, he would enter Tashi Lhunpo Monastery during the time of the 9th Panchen Lama. At Sakya, he manifested signs before the 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen, who at that time was the 17-year old supreme throne holder of the Sakyas. Subsequently, he enthroned Dorje Shugden as a protector of the Sakyas. Thus, the Sakyas first practiced Dorje Shugden before the practice spread to other traditions as well.

As was mentioned earlier, Dorje Shugden’s connection with the Sakya School began hundreds of years ago during his previous lifetimes as Sakya Pandita and also as Buton Rinchen Drub. These are two great Sakya lamas who were famous for their incredible contributions to their lineage and the Buddhadharma as a whole.

 

Sakya High Lamas Who Proliferated Dorje Shugden >>

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Sakya High Lamas

Who Proliferated Dorje Shugden

Since Dorje Shugden was introduced into the Sakya tradition, there have been many Sakya throne holders that practiced Dorje Shugden and proliferated the practice throughout the Sakya tradition. The following lamas are famous for proliferating the practice extensively throughout the Sakya tradition and thus establishing Dorje Shugden as one of the main Sakya protectors.

The 4th Throne Holder of the Sakyas, Jetsun Sonam Tsemo. Pictured below him is the Sakya depiction of Dorje Shugden riding on a horse, featured in a central position in the thangka immediately under the lama. This thangka was first printed and sold over 20 years ago to Sakya devotees. Click to enlarge.

 

The 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen

The 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen

According to Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, Dorje Shugden first appeared to Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen (1705-1741) when he was only 17 years old. At that time, he was in the midst of giving teachings on Lamdre, the Path and the Fruit teachings, to a gathering of Nyingmas. A rain of stones and other manifestations accompanied the teaching. That night, the lama dreamt that he was walking towards Tse Chen Temple of Sakya Puntsog Ling and a figure of a monk with many eyes appeared to him announcing that he is a Gaden practitioner.

On another occasion, a manifestation of a red arm appeared in his private chambers and to which, he asked, “What do you want?” A voice responded, “The previous lamas sought to practice me amongst the pantheon of Dharma protectors so I wish to be enthroned as a Dharma protector and I would like to have hand implements and symbols!” Therefore, Sonam Rinchen said, “Well, this is the heart of all beings.” The lama took his own leftover food and rolled it into a ball and placed it in Dorje Shugden’s hand. The ball transformed into an actual human heart, which sealed a powerful covenant between the lama and Dorje Shugden.

Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen would later compose prayers to Dorje Shugden called Request to the King to Eliminate False Guides. He was said to have offered basal substances at a newly established Protector temple and enthroned Dorje Shugden as the Protector of the Sakyas. Later, Sonam Rinchen was said to have worshiped Dorje Shugden together with two other Protectors, Setrap and Tsi’u Marpo (Kache Marpo). Collectively, they were known as the “Three Kings” or Gyalpo Sum. At this time, Sonam Rinchen was proliferating Dorje Shugden in the form that rides on a black horse known as Dorje Shugden Tanag.

 

Morchen Kunga Lhundrub

Morchen Kunga Lhundrub

Morchen Kunga Lhundrub (1654-1728) was one of the leading Sakya lamas of his time. He was also revered as a great lineage holder of the Vajrayogini Tantras. In addition to that, Morchen was revered as a lineage holder of the Sakya Lamdre, or the Path and its Fruit teachings.

Morchen Kunga Lhundrub wrote that he relied on Dorje Shugden and received signs from Dorje Shugden. He is also said to have given various tantric initiations at Trode Khangsar in Lhasa to the public as well as the resident Dorje Shugden oracle. In his writings, he also performed a consecration of the Gyalchen Chapel at Gaden Ling. He was credited as the co-author of the lower part of the Petition to Dorje Shugden Tsel: Granting all Desired Activities. Drubwang Dre’u Lhas, who is the incarnation of the Mahasiddha Drukpa Kunley of the Drukpa Kagyu tradition, composed the upper volume of this text. This text was used extensively by Dorje Shugden temples during this period such as at Trode Khangsar and Riwo Choeling, and was later incorporated into the Dorje Shugden fulfillment text written by Serkong Dorje Chang.

Morchen Kunga Lhundrub was known to have expanded on the foundation of Dre’u Lhas, which came to be included in the ritual origins of Dorje Shugden alongside some of the earliest detailed iconographic descriptions of Dorje Shugden Five Families – Five main emanations of Dorje Shugden. He also wrote rich descriptions of Dorje Shugden and also on each of the individual activities of the four cardinal emanations – peaceful, increasing, control and wrathful along with praises to each of them. All these are evidence of Morchen Kunga Lhundrub’s great contributions as one of the more prolific writers on Dorje Shugden’s practice within the Sakya tradition.

 

The 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro

Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen had a son and was later enthroned as the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro (1729-1783). Kunga Lodro was believed to be an emanation of Dorje Shugden himself and received all the Dorje Shugden transmissions from his father. He later wrote about the various rituals of Dorje Shugden, thus combining the lineages received from his father with those of another Sakya lineage holder, Morchen Kunga Lhundrub. Therefore, Kunga Lodro clearly carried on the tradition of his father of propitiating and proliferating Dorje Shugden.

Kunga Lodro was known to have written several significant rituals to Dorje Shugden. He composed a torma offering ritual text to Dorje Shugden Rig Nga or Dorje Shugden Five Families with Dulzin as the principal deity in the middle. This text is known as Phuntsok Dokyil or Swirl of Perfect Sense Offerings. In fact, he was the first to have written about the four other emanations of Dorje Shugden. Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche later used this ritual as part of his ‘Melodious Drum Victorious In All Directions‘ text, which is one of the most commonly practiced Dorje Shugden rituals today. Thus, the source of modern-day Dorje Shugden practice can be traced back to the Sakya School.

In his own biography he quoted a Tantric text from the Nyingma tradition, Rinchen Nadun, that recognized Dorje Shugden as having the same nature as Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion. Therefore in the Sakya tradition, they also recognized Dorje Shugden as being an emanation of Avalokiteshvara.

 

Sakya Trizin Recognized As Incarnation of Dorje Shugden

The 35th Sakya Trizin Tashi Rinchen

The 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro is believed to be the incarnation of Dorje Shugden. Later, he had taken rebirth as the grandchild of the 33rd Sakya Trizin Pema Dudul Wangchuk (1792-1853) and was given the name Kunga Nyingpo (1850-1899), who later became enthroned as the 37th Sakya Trizin. This explanation was recounted in the autobiography of Dragshul Trinley Rinchen, the 39th Sakya Trizin. In his writings, Dragshul Trinley Rinchen sought to prove that his father (Kunga Nyingpo) was the incarnation of Avalokiteshvara. The Sakyas believed at that time that Dorje Shugden was an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara. In order to do that, he tells the story of what happened in 1849.

Mahasiddha Pema Dudul Wangchuk

At that time, the 35th Sakya Trizin Tashi Rinchen (1824-1865) was without a child to carry on the family lineage. In desperation, he requested his own father, the Mahasiddha Pema Dudul Wangchuk to perform special prayers and rituals on his behalf at the famous Dorje Shugden temple, Mug Chung for the perpetuation of the family line. During the intermission during the rituals, Tashi Rinchen asked the Mahasiddha if he knew who would be taking rebirth as his son. The Mahasiddha replied, “Nowadays because of degenerate times, nobody else is coming. Grandpa Shugden is coming as your descendant!

Upon hearing this prophecy, Tashi Rinchen was very pleased and in celebration, a special tradition was started of offering thousands of butter lamps accompanied by the melodious sound of longhorns and trumpets echoing from the rooftops of the temple during the ninth Tibetan lunar month. About a year later, the emanation of Dorje Shugden, Kunga Nyingpo was born.

 

The 39th Sakya Trinzin Dragshul Trinley Rinchen

In the earlier part of the 19th century, the heads of the Sakya tradition came to be divided between the Drolma and Phuntsok Phodrang. Each of these ‘Phodrang’, which means house or family line, is where a Sakya Trizin or Sakya throne holder would arise. These two great houses alternate their governance of the Sakya tradition.

Dragshul Trinley Rinchen (1871-1935) was born within the Drolma Phodrang as the son of Kunga Nyingpo. Dragshul Trinley Rinchen also referred to the Nyingma Tantra, Rinchen Nadun, that states, “The one known as Dolgyal is not mistaken on the path to liberation, he is by nature the Great Compassionate One.” He used this reference to determine Dorje Shugden to be enlightened.

On the other hand, Dragshul Trinley Rinchen stated in his biography that many lamas from various traditions had visited him on many different occasions to receive teachings. In 1905, a particularly noteworthy lama who came to him for teachings was Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche. In his writings, it was recorded that Dragshul Trinley Rinchen bestowed on Pabongka Rinpoche several initiations including the Four-Face Mahakala empowerment. It was evident that Pabongka Rinpoche kept the Four-Face Mahakala practice close to his heart, as can be seen in the many rituals of this deity that were composed by Pabongkha Rinpoche, extant within his collected works.

 

Sakya Depictions of Dorje Shugden >>

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Sakya Depictions of Dorje Shugden

Dorje Shugden on a Black Horse

Dorje Shugden Tanag

Within the Sakya lineage of Dorje Shugden, the depiction of Dorje Shugden is very different from the one currently being worshipped within the Gelug tradition. In the old tradition of the Sakyas, Dorje Shugden’s principle mount is a black horse and hence, the lineage of Dorje Shugden is called Dorje Shugden Tanag or ‘Dorje Shugden on a black horse’.

One of the earliest descriptions of this form of Dorje Shugden comes from the writings of the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro in the mid-18th century that was based on a transmission from his father, the 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen. In this lama’s text entitled Requesting to Annihilate Interfering Forces, he writes that Dorje Shugden’s body is dark red in color, with one face and two hands. His right hand holds a club up to the sky and he holds in his left hand, a human heart inside a skull cup filled with blood. On his head, he wears a lacquer hat and is riding a black horse.

Dorje Shugden Tanag

Dorje Shugden Tanag tsa tsa

Dorje Shugden on the horse is on the bottom left of this thangka of Vajrayogini. Vajrayogini is considered one of the 13 Golden Dharmas of the Sakya Tradition.

 

Dorje Shugden in Sakya Monastery

(Shigatse, Tibet)

This video and these pictures of Dorje Shugden in the Sakya Monastery were recorded in 2015, hundreds of years after they were first painted as part of their pantheon of Protectors.

The Dorje Shugden wall mural at Sakya Monastery in Shigatse

A close-up of the Dorje Shugden wall mural at Sakya Monastery in Shigatse

 

Mahakala and Dorje Shugden

in the Sakya Tradition

Click to enlarge

This antique thangka of Mahakala Panjaranata used to be the personal possession of Sachen Kunga Lodro. The lama figure above the protector is a depiction of Sachen Kunga Lodro himself.

The central protector figure at the bottom of the thangka is the Sakya-lineage of Dorje Shugden riding a black horse.

 

Dorje Shugden on a Throne

According to scriptural sources, it seems that the tradition of Dorje Shugden riding on a horse is not the only depiction within the Sakyas. There is another tradition of the Sakyas that invokes Dorje Shugden as a deity uniquely resting on a lion throne. This is similar to the description in the praise of Dorje Shugden by the Great 5th Dalai Lama that was based on his vision of Dorje Shugden in the mid-17th century.

Dorje Shugden sitting regally on a throne, surrounded by his emanations of Shize, Gyenze, Wangze and Trakze.

Within the Sakya tradition, this depiction of Dorje Shugden can be seen in the writings of Morchen Kunga Lhundrub around the tail end of the 17th century. In the enthronement prayers or Ngasol that was written by Morchen Kunga Lhundrub, the lama writes, “Posed upon a fearless lion throne, boundlessly powerful Dorje Shugden Tsel.” Hence, there are thangkas of Dorje Shugden within the Sakya tradition that depict Dorje Shugden sitting on a lion throne as well as those in which he is seen riding a black horse as well.

 

Kangsol (Part 1) >>

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Sakya Kangsol (Part 1)

The 31st Sakya Trizin Sachen Kunga Lodro (1729-1783) composed the following Dorje Shugden kangsol text. This text contains the propitiation rites that the Sakya high lamas and ordinary monks use in order to invoke the blessings and protection of Dorje Shugden. From this extensive 149-page long text, one can clearly see that Dorje Shugden is evidently not just a minor practice but a significant protector for the Sakyas. Consequently, this important Dorje Shugden text has been in use since the time of Sachen Kunga Lodro to this day.

To download the entire kangsol, please click here.

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Kangsol (Part 2) >>

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Sakya Kangsol (Part 2)

The 31st Sakya Trizin Sachen Kunga Lodro (1729-1783) composed the following Dorje Shugden kangsol text. This text contains the propitiation rites that the Sakya high lamas and ordinary monks use in order to invoke the blessings and protection of Dorje Shugden. From this extensive 149-page long text, one can clearly see that Dorje Shugden is evidently not just a minor practice but a significant protector for the Sakyas. Consequently, this important Dorje Shugden text has been in use since the time of Sachen Kunga Lodro to this day.

To download the entire kangsol, please click here.

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Other Prayers from the Sakya Tradition >>

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Other Prayers from the Sakya Tradition

Enthronement Prayer to Dorje Shugden

By the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro

HUM DORJE CHANG WANG TSA GYÜ LAMA DANG NGÖ DRUB KÜN TSÖL YIDAM LHA YI TSOG BAR CHE KÜN SEL SUNG MAY THU TOB KYI TRINLEY LHÜN DRUB GYEL POR NGA SÖL LO

HUM With the Vajradhara root and lineage masters, The assembly of yidhams1 who grant all realizations, And protectors who remove all obstacles, We recognize you as a king among thrinlay lhundrub2.

GANG KU MUG NAG NYI MA JE WAY ZI CHÖ GÖ SUM DEN RAB JUNG ZHÖN NUI TSUL SER GYI DANG DEN THANG THEB BU LA SÖL CHÖ KHOR YONG KYI SUNG MAR NGA SÖL LO

Your dark-red form blazes like a hundred suns, You appear as a youthful monk in the triple robes, You wear a gold-hued thebzha3 on your head, We recognize you as the protector of all chokhors4.

DREN PA TSAM GYI MI THUN CHOG NAM KÜN KE CHIG NYI LA THEL BAR LOG NÜ PAY LHA MAG JE WAY MAG TSOG GYE PA YI CHAG TSEN TSEN DEN BING GI NGA SÖL LO

Merely by recalling whose name, Who could emanate a million divine hosts, That can reduce to dust all malignant forces, With the divine sandalwood bheng5, we recognize you as such.

TEN DANG TEN DZIN BU ZHIN KYONG DZE CHING NAM ZHI TRINLEY THOG MAY NYUR DRUB PA DRAG SHUL TOB DEN DORJE SHUGDEN TSEL DAG GI TEN GYI DRA LHAR NGA SÖL LO

You are the fierce and mighty Dorje Shugden, Who sustains tenpa6 and tenzin7 like son, And swiftly fulfills all four tasks, I recognize you as my constant dralha8.

DOR NA DAG GI LEG NYE JA WA KÜN CHÖ SUNG CHEN PO KYE LA NYER TAY KYI NYIN TSEN YEL WA MAY PAR SUNG WA DANG CHOG DÜ KÜN TU GYE PAY TRA SHI TSÖL

In short I entrust all my concerns both right n’ wrong, To you, great dharmapala, Protect me day and night with vigilance, At all times and places, grant propitious factors.

Notes

  • 1. Meditational deities.
  • 2. Thrinlay: task, purpose; lhun, shortened form of the adverb lhungyis, effortlessly; drub: accomplishing naturally. ‘By whose blessings one’s purposes are fulfilled effortlessly’.
  • 3. The hat worn by high-ranking ecclesiastical personages in Tibet.
  • 4. A compund of cho (Dharma) and khor (its adherents).
  • 5. The cudgel in the hands of deities.
  • 6. The Buddha’s teaching.
  • 7. Upholders of the Buddha’s teachings.
  • 8. The divinity someone could rely upon in times of strife and war.

 


 

Praise to Dorje Shugden

By the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro

(excerpt from the Dorje Shugden prayer called duelzin choe ki gyalpo choepai choka phuentsog doe gu yong khil she jawa)

At the early time, entering into the teaching of the Tathagata,
you rose in the form of Vinaya-holding Bhikshu,
thus you protect all the teachings of the Sravaka-Pitaka without exception,
I prostrate to you.

In the middle, in front of many Buddhas and Bodhisattvas,
having generated the aspiring and entering Bodhicitta,
you obtained the prophecy as a protector of the teaching of the Dharma,
thus you protect all the teachings of the Bodhisattvas without exception, to you I prostrate.

In the great mandala of the ocean of Tantras,
initiated by Vajradhara, and receiving the samayas,
thus you protect all the teachings of the profound Tantra without exception,
to you I prostrate.

In particular in this northern land, surrounded by a range of snow mountains,
though not directly pervaded by the sun of the Buddha, yet sustained by his compassion,
you are the protector of all those perfect schools of Dharma,
I prostrate to you.

All the great holders of the teaching, who comment according to one’s own views,
the entire Tripitakas, the Tantras and their commentaries,
you are the very protector of all the holders of the Dharma,
acting as the fulfiller of the words of those leaders, I prostrate to you.

The legacy of the pandits, translators, dharma kings and ministers,
all the temples constructed by them,
you are the protector of all those seats of the Sangha without exception,
I prostrate to you.

For entire Tibet, included in upper region Ngari, central region Ue-tsang, and lower region Dokham,
you act as the very protector, refuge, supporter, and friend of all people without exception,
thus you are the very god of the snow-land country,
I prostrate to you.

The great protector of all the Buddhas of this fortunate aeon,
who is the eliminator of all the forces of unsuitable Mara,
some day through showing full enlightenment as Samyaksambuddha,
you will fulfil the deed of a Tathagata, to you I prostrate.

In short, in all three times, uninterruptedly,
with your infinite secrets of body speech and mind,
all those beings who are wandering in the ocean of the cycle,
you give them the perfect state of liberation, to you I prostrate.

Thus by the power of venerating you with this ocean of melodious praise,
through generating delight, compassion, and benevolent force of your mind,
please fulfil the activity for increasing of virtues, pacifying of disfavourable interferences,
and accomplishment of all the purposes in accordance to Dharma.

 

Gallery of Images >>

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Gallery of Images

These three statues are of the Sakya founding fathers of Sachen Kunga Nyingpo (center), Jetsun Sonam Tsemo (left) and Jetsun Drakpa Gyeltsen (right).

The 3rd holder of the Sakya throne, Kunga Nyingpo. Click to enlarge

The 4th Throne Holder of the Sakyas, Jetsun Sonam Tsemo. Pictured below him is the Sakya depiction of Dorje Shugden riding on a horse, featured in a central position in the thangka immediately under the lama. This thangka was first printed and sold over 20 years ago to Sakya devotees. Click to enlarge.

One of the three founding fathers of the Sakya tradition, Jetsun Drakpa Gyeltsen who was the 5th Sakya Trizin. Click to enlarge.

An outline of the Sakya lineage

An outline of the Sakya tradition of Tibetan Buddhism

An outline of the relationship of the Sakya Protectors, including Dorje Shugden on the left

The Dorje Shugden wall mural at Sakya Monastery in Shigatse

A close-up of the Dorje Shugden wall mural at Sakya Monastery in Shigatse

Dorje Shugden Tanag

Dorje Shugden Tanag

Dorje Shugden Tanag tsa tsa

Dorje Shugden on the horse is on the bottom left of this thangka of Vajrayogini. Vajrayogini is considered one of the 13 Golden Dharmas of the Sakya Tradition.

This antique thangka of Mahakala Panjaranata used to be the personal possession of Sachen Kunga Lodro. The lama figure above the protector is a depiction of Sachen Kunga Lodro himself. The central protector figure at the bottom of the thangka is the Sakya-lineage of Dorje Shugden riding a black horse.

Dorje Shugden sitting regally on a throne, surrounded by his emanations of Shize, Gyenze, Wangze and Trakze.

Dorje Shugden as depicted in the Sakya tradition

Dorje Shugden as depicted in the Sakya tradition

Dorje Shugden as depicted in the Sakya tradition

Dorje Shugden Tanag or Dorje Shugden riding a horse. This form is a popular depiction of Dorje Shugden within the Sakya lineage.

 

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Conclusion

From the writings of several Sakya Trizins, it is evident that Dorje Shugden was widely practiced and proliferated within the Sakya tradition. This fact is also reiterated within the writings of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in his seminal work on Dorje Shugden entitled, Music Delighting the Ocean of Protectors. In fact, the 31st and 37th Sakya Trizin were recognised to be the incarnations of Dorje Shugden himself.

The Sakya Temple

The whole practice of Dorje Shugden is centered at the Protector temple Mug Chung in the great Sakya Monastery. Hence, when Dorje Shugden is invoked in our pujas today, he is requested to come forth from various place including this temple in Sakya. Further evidence of the popularity of this practice within the Sakya tradition is the surviving thangkas of Dorje Shugden. As Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche says in his writings, Dorje Shugden’s fulfillment offering ritual and propitiation were performed since the time of earlier Sakya Trizins, and continues up until the present day.

The Sakya tradition of Dorje Shugden is centered at the Protector temple Mug Chung.

 

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Pastor David Lai
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About Pastor David Lai

David is a lay Buddhist pastor of Kechara and a longtime student of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche. Initially a reluctant writer, he now finds himself writing for a living and has published four books including his autobiography, There's No Way But Up and Conversations in Love.

David is a lover of Buddhist art and whenever he can, he shares his knowledge of the Dharma with everyone, giving frequent teachings and writing on his blog www.davidlai.me.
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19 Responses to The Sakya Lineage & Dorje Shugden

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  1. Anne Ong on Nov 1, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    Thank you very much Rinpoche and Pastor David for sharing this nice and clear write up of The Sakya Lineage & Dorje Shugden. Here is a summary of what I’ve picked up from this article. “Dorje Shugden was one of their main protector practices and considered an emanation of Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion (an early Sakya belief). In fact, two of the Sakya Trizins were even considered incarnations of Dorje Shugden. How can a spirit incarnate as a Sakya throne holder? The evidence is clear that Dorje Shugden is not a minor practice and he is not a spirit either.”
    “The great origins of the Sakya teachings is traced back to the Indian Mahasiddha Virupa of the 9th Century. In the scriptures he has several other names, including Birwapa, and his life is recounted as one of the greatest of the 84 Mahasiddhas in terms of miraculous attainments.”
    “On the other hand, there are several other general protectors such as Palden Lhamo, Ekajati, and Chamsing – a protector practice proliferated by Sachen Kunga Nyingpo. Besides that, Dorje Shugden, Setrap and Tsi’u Marpo (Kache Marpo) are propitiated as the Three Kings or Gyalpo Sum. The last would be the three Bamo witches, who are unenlightened oath-bound protectors that are unique to the Sakya School.”
    “The 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro is believed to be the incarnation of Dorje Shugden. Later, he had taken rebirth as the grandchild of the 33rd Sakya Trizin Pema Dudul Wangchuk (1792-1853) and was given the name Kunga Nyingpo (1850-1899), who later became enthroned as the 37th Sakya Trizin. This explanation was recounted in the autobiography of Dragshul Trinley Rinchen, the 39th Sakya Trizin. In his writings, Dragshul Trinley Rinchen sought to prove that his father (Kunga Nyingpo) was the incarnation of Avalokiteshvara. The Sakyas believed at that time that Dorje Shugden was an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara. In order to do that, he tells the story of what happened in 1849”
    “At that time, the 35th Sakya Trizin Tashi Rinchen (1824-1865) was without a child to carry on the family lineage. In desperation, he requested his own father, the Mahasiddha Pema Dudul Wangchuk to perform special prayers and rituals on his behalf at the famous Dorje Shugden temple, Mug Chung for the perpetuation of the family line. During the intermission during the rituals, Tashi Rinchen asked the Mahasiddha if he knew who would be taking rebirth as his son. The Mahasiddha replied, “Nowadays because of degenerate times, nobody else is coming. Grandpa Shugden is coming as your descendant!“
    Upon hearing this prophecy, Tashi Rinchen was very pleased and in celebration, a special tradition was started of offering thousands of butter lamps accompanied by the melodious sound of longhorns and trumpets echoing from the rooftops of the temple during the ninth Tibetan lunar month. About a year later, the emanation of Dorje Shugden, Kunga Nyingpo was born.”
    “One of the earliest descriptions of this form of Dorje Shugden comes from the writings of the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro in the mid-18th century that was based on a transmission from his father, the 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen. In this lama’s text entitled Requesting to Annihilate Interfering Forces, he writes that Dorje Shugden’s body is dark red in color, with one face and two hands. His right hand holds a club up to the sky and he holds in his left hand, a human heart inside a skull cup filled with blood. On his head, he wears a lacquer hat and is riding a black horse.”

  2. Tsem Rinpoche on Sep 15, 2016 at 3:14 am

    Trode Khangsar Chapel in Lhasa, Tibet

    Over 400 years ago a great and learned lama Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen was famed in Mongolia, Tibet, Nepal and China for being very saintly and compassionate. He resided in his residence (Zimkhang Gongma Ladrang) in Drepung Monastery. His root guru was H.H. the Omniscient 4th Panchen Lama and his close dharma brother was the 5th Dalai Lama.

    The 5th Dalai Lama and Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen had a very close and dharmic relationship and often went to receive teachings together from the 4th Panchen Lama. They were close in age. They both became very learned and well known. During this time, the Dalai Lama was enthroned as a Dharma King of Tibet. But more people went to see Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen for teachings, initiations and divinations. This made the attendants of the 5th Dalai Lama feel threatened that Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen’s fame might usurp the power of the 5th Dalai Lama. So they had a khata forced down his throat. At that moment, Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen dissolved his psychic winds and generated the wish to be a great guardian of Buddha and Tsongkapa’s teachings. As his consciousness dissolved, he entered ‘bardo’ as a dharma protector of the highest order (jikten depey sungma). Many signs were seen throughout Lhasa at this time and the earth was said to have shaken in Lhasa. This event was already predicted to Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen’s previous incarnation when he was one of the 8 main disciples of Lord Tsongkapa the Supreme Master and he served Tsongkapa directly by building Gaden Monastery.

    When the 5th Dalai Lama heard what his scheming and power-hungry attendants had done, he was very distressed. He was very sorry Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen was murdered and dishonored as he was a great dharma master. The 5th Dalai Lama composed an apology to Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen. In Lhasa, tens of thousands gathered for the cremation of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen’s holy body. During the cremation, the 5th Dalai Lama’s apology was read out at which flames spontaneously arose from the body of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen commencing the cremation. From the body, during cremation, a powerful whirlwind of smoke tunneled into the sky for all to see as this was an indication Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen’s consciousness has arisen as the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden. The Dharma Protector Setrap immediately recognized this new protector Dorje Shugden and ‘enthroned’ him as a powerful Dharma Protector in the realm of the Buddhas. From this, Setrap and Dorje Shugden are closely connected and very close working hand in hand always. After the cremation, the great 5th Dalai Lama built a Dorje Shugden chapel on the spot the cremation took place and named it Trode Khangsar. The 5th Dalai Lama commissioned the statue of Dorje Shugden in this chapel and had monks installed in the chapel to do continuous propitiations to Dorje Shugden. Trode Khangsar Chapel was a commemoration to Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen who was wronged and also a celebration of his consciousness arising as the World Peace Peace Protector Dorje Shugden.

    This Trode Khangsar Chapel still exists now in Lhasa where many make pilgrimages there. It is in good condition and was recently renovated. It is over 400 years old and a testimony to the respect the Great 5th Dalai Lama had to Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen who arose as Dorje Shugden.

    I have visited this holy chapel in Lhasa years back. I’ve never heard of it till I was in Lhasa and by chance, I was told about it which I was happy to visit. I could not find the place but strangely a bunch of pilgrims from Amdo told me they would show me how to get there in Lhasa.

    This short video is a short clip of this holy Trode Khangsar Chapel in Lhasa today commemorating Dorje Shugden, built by the great 5th Dalai Lama. The great 5th Dalai Lama even composed a prayer to Dorje Shugden which is still available today and we can recite to invoke the blessings, protection, and assistance of World Peace Protector Dorje Shugden.

    Tsem Rinpoche


    Read more: Trode Khangsar – A 400-year-old Dorje Shugden Chapel in Lhasa
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/trode-khangsar-%E2%80%93-a-400-year-old-dorje-shugden-chapel-in-lhasa.html

    Short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FTybDwTeLAM

    __________________________________

    The 5th Dalai Lama’s Prayer to Dorje Shugden

    HUM
    Though unmoving from the sphere of primordial spontaneity,
    With wrathful turbulent power, swifter than lightning,
    Endowed with heroic courage to judge good and bad,
    I invite you with faith, please come to this place!

    Robes of a monk, crown adorned with rhinoceros leather hat,
    Right hand holds ornate club, left holds a human heart,
    Riding various mounts such as nagas and garudas,
    Who subdues the mamos of the charnel grounds, praise to you!

    Samaya substances, offerings and torma, outer, inner and secret,
    Favourite visual offerings and various objects are arranged.
    Although, previously, my wishes were a bit dense,
    Do not stop your powerful apparitions, I reveal and confess!

    Now respectfully praising with body, speech, and mind,
    For us, the masters, disciples, benefactors and entourages,
    Provide the good and avert the bad!
    Bring increase like the waxing moon in spiritual and temporal realms!

    Moreover, swiftly accomplishing all wishes,
    According to our prayers, bestow the supreme effortlessly!
    And like the jewel that bestows all wishes,
    Always protect us with the Three Jewels!

    From: http://www.dorjeshugden.org/practice/the-5th-dalai-lamas-prayer-to-dorje-shugden

    Tibetan prayer from: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/the-14th-dalai-lamas-prayer-to-dorje-shugden.html

  3. Wan Wai Meng on Aug 20, 2016 at 4:03 am

    Dorje Shugden, was incubated, practiced and was an integral part of the Sakya tradition for the longest time. It is a real shame that the Sakyas so readily gave up the practice of Dorje Shudgen that formed a significant part of their repertoire of their practices.

    To me by giving up a ‘true’ friend in samsara, is not benefitting the practitioners of the Sakya lineage at all.

  4. Shane Jayasuriya on Jun 26, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Thank you Pastor David for this article, Until now I never knew Sakya tradition had practice Dorje Shugden.. As many thinking I also thinking if Dorje Shugden is a evil spirit as HHDL and some saying why cant they control dorje shugden like Guru Rinpoche did to many harmful dangerous spirits..So no trouble for them and many who suffering because of the ban.
    _/\_

  5. Pastor David Lai on Apr 24, 2016 at 11:13 pm

    Someone private messaged me on Facebook about this comment in regards to the Dharma protector Setrap. In the comments to a post on Facebook someone mentioned that Setrap is not a mainstream practice. This is far from the truth.

    Setrap is indeed a mainstream protector given the fact he is the protector of Gaden Shartse Monastery. Gaden is one of the three largest monasteries of Tibet together with Sera and Drepung, which are collectively known as the 3 pillars of the Gaden tradition. Lama Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelug lineage founded Gaden Monastery, making it the heart of the tradition.

    The heads of the Gelug tradition, known as the Gaden Tri Rinpoches are enthroned as such solely at Gaden Monastery. Their thrones must be in Gaden Monastery and this represents their spiritual authority over the entire Gelugpa tradition. Since Setrap is practiced at the heart of the Gelugpa tradition it is an established and mainstream practice.

    Furthermore, Setrap is also the Dharma protector of Nyeari Khangtsen of Drepung Loseling Monastery and also worshipped in the great Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, as part of the liturgies invoking various other Dharma protectors.

    On top of that, one of the state oracles of Tibet is the Tsangpa oracle. This oracle takes trance of the protector Tsangpa Karpo, renowned to be the peaceful aspect of Setrap according to Oracles and Demons of Tibet by Rene de Nebesky-Wojkowitz. This is one of the oracles that the Dalai Lama consults on official state matters for the governance of the Tibetan people prior to the death of the Tsangpa Karpo medium. I have included the excerpt from Oracles and Demons of Tibet, highlighting the fact that Tsangpa Karpo is the peaceful form of Setrap.

    Given all of this, it can certainly not be claimed that Setrap’s practice is not mainstream. In fact as shown it is a very pervasive practice, from the level of an ordinary monk in Gaden Shartse, all the way to matters of state.

    ps – I have included the screenshot of the message I saw on Fb and also an excerpt from the Oracles and Demons of Tibet book.

    Setrap mainstream

    Setrap Tsangpa karpo

  6. Pastor Elena Khong Jean Ai on Apr 24, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    A friend of mine called my attention to this post on Facebook.

    What I find interesting is that after the person has made the effort to highlight Sakya lineage masters who relied on Dorje Shugden (or who were seen to be one with Dorje Shugden), he then degrades the practice of his OWN lineage masters as being a ‘minor practice’.

    Whether minor or major is not the point. The fact is that IT WAS PRACTISED. And it wasn’t being practised by some lama with no name, no reputation or no rank but it was being practised by the head of the WHOLE LINEAGE. If everything else this head did was authentic, then his Dorje Shugden practice was also authentic. So if you look at the level of the practitioner being the lineage head of the Sakya tradition, that validates Dorje Shugden practice within the Sakya tradition as authentic.

    And whether minor or major, the person on Facebook actually RECOGNISES Dorje Shugden was a Sakya practice (although he tried to put it down by calling it ‘minor’). He also stated on Facebook that Dorje Shugden was originally practiced together with Setrap and Tsi’u Marpo, as the Gyalpo Sum. Gyalpos are spirits of monks who broke their vows and samaya with their lamas.

    Why would the Sakya high lamas need to rely on Gyalpo spirits? It doesn’t make sense as these high lamas have their own abilities for protection and blessings, and there are other enlightened Protectors in the Sakya lineage that they can rely on. So why did they rely on Dorje Shugden along with Tsi’u Marpo and Setrap? Because he is an enlightened being.

    On top of that, this same person even wrote that “Sakya Gongma Dragshul Trinley Rinchen states in his diary that Dorje Shugden was an emanation of Avalokiteshvara and that his own father, Kunga Nyingpo (19th century), was an emanation of Dorje Shugden.”

    How is it possible that a Gyalpo spirit can reincarnate as a Sakya throne holder? Wouldn’t this mean that the entire lineage stemming from Kunga Nyingpo has been corrupted?

    So which one is it? Is Dorje Shugden a minor practice? Is Dorje Shugden a Gyalpo spirit practice and so the previous Sakya Trizins broke their refuge vows AND invalidated the whole Sakya lineage by relying on him? Or is Dorje Shugden NOT a spirit practice, but actually the worship of an enlightened being? Or were all the previous Sakya Trizins wrong and only the current Sakya Trizin is correct about Dorje Shugden being a so-called spirit? Or is the current Sakya Trizin wrong, and the previous ones correct?

    To put it simply – are the Sakya lineage masters wrong, or is the current Sakya Trizin wrong?

    If you call into question Dorje Shugden’s validity within the Sakya lineage, you can’t do it without creating doubt in people’s minds about the Sakya lineage masters, their decisions and who is correct – the lineage masters or the current Sakya Trizin.

    Speaking of the Sakya Trizin, the same person on Facebook claims to know what various lamas do and do not practice. I don’t think this can be very accurate. Tibetan Buddhist lamas of all traditions are known to keep their personal yidam and protector practices hidden, even from their own students. To categorically state that a lama does or does not practice a particular deity cannot be a reliable statement.

    Even if Sakya Trizin does not practice Dorje Shugden, it has been proved that the previous Sakya Trizins HAVE PRACTICED. Kunga Lodro (31st Sakya Trizin) and Kunga Nyingpo (37th Sakya Trizin) are even known to be emanations of Dorje Shugden.

    According to the logic of those who denounce Dorje Shugden, people who practice Dorje Shugden have broken their refuge vows. In this case the Sakya Trizins mentioned above and others in the lineage had broken their refuge vows many hundreds of years ago. This would mean the transmission of the entire corpus of Sakya teachings has been corrupt since that time.

    If that is really the case then the current Sakya Trizin has received and is practicing a false and inauthentic lineage. Therefore we should not listen to any of the current Sakya masters who received transmissions of a false and inauthentic lineage. This is the conclusion according to the people who preach that the current Sakya Trizin is correct on Dorje Shugden, and all of the previous lineage masters were wrong to rely on Dorje Shugden.

    Even a cursory examination of these comments, with logic applied, shows that the person posting doesn’t actually understand the implications of their inflammatory comments…

    001

    002

    • MartinC on Apr 25, 2016 at 2:12 am

      Thank you Pastor Jean Ai. Your comments are very logical and valid.

      The Sakya have always considered their Throne Holders to be reincarnations of enlightened beings and hence the claim to the sacredness of the lineage and their succession.

      It is amazing how, one the one hand critics make the claim that the Sakya’s hail from a divine line of Throne Holders, and now on the other hand state that one of their illustrious Throne Holders, Kunga Ningpo was in fact an emanation of Dorje Shugden which according to this critic of Shugden, to be no more than a minor unenlightened protector. So either established Sakya history is wrong (in which case, it has to be corrected that not all Sakya Throne Holders were emanations of divine beings) or this particular critic is wrong. It cannot be both.

      If this critic were to insist that Dorje Shugden is merely a spirit, then he is saying that Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyeltsen (one of the Founding fathers of the Sakya lineage), Kunga Lodro (the 31st Sakya Trinzin), and Kunga Lodro’s rebirth as his own grand-son Kunga Ningpo, the Mahasiddha Padma Dudul Wangchuk (the 33rd Throne Holder) and other great and enlightened Sakya masters were all wrong and he is right.

      What a way to undermine one’s one lineage by trying to insist that one is right while one’s lineage history is wrong.

  7. Pastor Niral Patel on Apr 24, 2016 at 10:23 pm

    This was sent to me by my cousin, whom I shared the practice of Setrap with in the past and who benefited from Setrap’s practice when she was going through a particularly turbulent time in her life. It was stated recently on Facebook that Setrap was brought over to Tibet from India by Lotsawa Loden Sherab, which is a well-known fact amongst those who know about Setrap’s practice. Loden Sherab’s spiritual reincarnation lineage is very much recognised and is today known as Dagyab Kyabgon Rinpoche, who as others commenting have mentioned is still very much respected in Gaden Shartse.

    In other comments in the same post, Setrap is labelled as an unenlightened being. This contradiction in viewpoints really doesn’t make sense for a number of reasons. The first is that the spiritual incarnation lineage of Loden Sherab is respected BECAUSE he brought the practice of Setrap over from India, so the practice did not originate from a valid source.

    Secondly would such a high incarnate lama really bring an unenlightened protector all the way from India and spread his practice? This doesn’t make sense, as surely he would rely on an enlightened protector. Why spend time, effort, energy establishing something unenlightened, if there is a pantheon of enlightened protectors he can propagate?

    If the people on that Facebook thread want to believe that Setrap is unenlightened, then they also believe that Loden Sherab isn’t a high lama and he has no attainments since he could not recognise that Setrap is unenlightened, but mistakenly thought that he is an enlightened Dharma protector.

    So if we follow this course of reasoning, it can only mean two things. The first is that Setrap really is in fact an enlightened protector, as mentioned by some of those who commented on the original post, and the whole of Gaden Shartse and its eminent teachers will attest to. Or secondly, that Setrap is not enlightened, Loden Sherab was wrong and the whole of Gaden Shartse and its eminent teachers have all been mistaken in their propitiation.

    The second reasoning cannot be true because if all of Gaden Shartse was wrong about Setrap, this would negate all Buddhist practice from Shartse, AND it would negate Shartse’s opinion of Loden Sherab as a lama to be respected.

    Screenshot

    LodenSherab

  8. Jason on Mar 27, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    Thanks Pastor David for sharing.Pastor write up really add up my knowledge on Dorje Shugden. Before I read this article, I thought only Gelug lineage practice Dorje Shugden. From the Pastor David write up showed that Dorje Shugden also widely practice in Sakya lineage.Further more 31st and 37th Sakya Trizin were confirmed as incarnation of Dorje Shugden.
    Besides that, Sakya lineage high lama did practice an unelightened protector Sangmo Dorje Putri.This protector is under control by Karhe Mapo who is entourage of Dorje Shugden.
    From the above evidence, how can Dalai Lama claimed Dorje Shugden is spirit can be true?Two lineages also practice Dorje Shugden.
    At last but not least, I plea to Dalai Lama uplift the ban of Dorje Shugden and let more sentient being get benefit of the practice and towards enlightenment.
    Thanks again Rinpoche and Pastor David for sharing.

  9. samfoonheei on Mar 26, 2016 at 9:52 am

    Thank you…Pastor David Lai for sharing
    I have learned so much and discovered so much about Dorje Shugden.
    I have more to learn…i am still very new to all these..
    Thank you again for this wonderful post.

  10. Datuk May on Mar 24, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    Knowing history in this instance is knowing and being extremely clear in our faith of our lineage Protector, that of Dorje Shugden.

    With so much written and documented evidence by great throne holders, it seem so illogical that the Dalai Lama would proclaim contrary to the truth and that Dorje Shugden is a spirit and worshipping Him would cause harm to HH Dalai Lama and the Tibetan cause.

    Great and erudite Masters and Lamas are emanation and incarnations of highly attained beings and Buddhas and 2 of the Shakya Trizins the 31st and 37th are incarnations of Dorje Shugden.

    Thank you Pastor David for this post and the historical and documented facts of our Protector, Dorje Shugden.

  11. Kelsang Choden on Mar 24, 2016 at 7:13 am

    I am a 12 year old tibetan girl that was born in america.But I dont know much about dorge shugden but my parents are dorge shugden practitioners. I saw some tibetan kids that were dalia lama followers they say I am a spirit worshipper i asked them if they consider dalia lama their god then why cant he get rid of this “spirit”.sometimes I ‘m confused because the tibetan community talks about dorge shugden and how dorge shugden is a evil spirit but if dalia lama is so good and powerful why cant he get rid of the spirit? The reason i am interested about dorge shugden because my whole family doesnt talk to me and my parents because dalia lama banned dorge shugden. Also i have another question before dalia lama banned dorge shugden for many years he was a dorge shugden practitioner and he considered dorge shugden as a god when he starts not liking dorge shugden thats when he tells people that dorge shugden is bad. Tsem rinpoche i read you blogs my parents have a hard time trying to explain this to me because i cant really speak tibetan that well your blog answers a lot of my questions.Your blog is the most helpful website for me to get my answers.Thank you. I focus a lot on my studies for school but i also have to be knowing about the dorge shugden ban because it caused me to lose my family.

    • Pastor Niral Patel on Mar 24, 2016 at 5:39 pm

      Dear Kelsang Choden,

      I’m glad that His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s blog has helped you. In answer to your first question, the reason why His Holiness Dalai Lama cannot get rid of Dorje Shugden and neither can anyone else for that matter is because Dorje Shugden is Manjushri, a Buddha. You cannot get rid of Buddha. This just goes to show that Dorje Shugden is not a spirit. The Dalai Lama can definitely get rid of a spirit, so he would definitely get rid of Dorje Shugden if he could. His Holiness Dalai Lama is actually Chenresig and is very powerful. In the past some different high lamas tried to get rid of Dorje Shugden but they could not. You can read about this in the comic book of Dorje Shugden, click the link here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/dorje-shugden-illustrated-story-graphic-novel.html

      Yes, the Dalai Lama did practice Dorje Shugden when he was younger. He even wrote a prayer which you can read here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/the-14th-dalai-lamas-prayer-to-dorje-shugden.html. Since then he has told people not to practice Dorje Shugden if they want to have a spiritual relationship with him. As Dorje Shugden practitioners, however, we should not hate the Dalai Lama because he is actually Chenresig. Tsem Rinpoche has a very nice post about the Dalai Lama, which you can read here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/what-i-think-of-his-holiness-the-14th-dalai-lama.html.

      You are right that you should know about the Dorje Shugden because of what has happened to you and your family. Do you know that Dorje Shugden can help you with your studies? This is because Dorje Shugden is Manjushri. Reciting his mantra and prayers can help you do well in your studies.

    • Pastor David Lai on Mar 27, 2016 at 4:22 am

      Dear Kelsang Choden,
      It is very heart-warming to hear from you. Thank you very much for writing in as it is very rare to hear from our Tibetan friends. I am glad you have learned from Rinpoche’s blog and enjoy learning about Dorje Shugden. I hope you will read more and leave your comment or even your questions if you do not understand. Do not be shy to ask questions no matter how small they are. Many of Rinpoche’s learned senior students will help to answer them. Please also share with your friends and maybe your parents too even if they may no understand English very well. Very nice to hear from you. Thank you!

  12. Tomtom on Mar 24, 2016 at 6:50 am

    I am tibetan and a Dorge Shugden practitioner. HH Tsem Rinpoche your blog is very interesting. People that don’t know about Dharma will find this website very useful. Everything you have said is true.I go to other lama’s websites most of them mix religion with politics. Rinpoche you are only talking about Dharma and thats why i am always reading your blogs.Also you don’t do this for money or fame thats why i really enjoy them and also you are a very busy with your practice but still you still give advice and help those who dont know about Dharma and you always continue.

    • Pastor David Lai on Mar 31, 2016 at 6:01 pm

      Hi Tomtom,
      Nice to see you here. Hope to see you more and do post what you feel about the article that you have read. It is very encouraging to hear a respectable Tibetan man like you give feedback. It doesn’t have to be long but enough to tell what you feel or think.

  13. JP on Mar 23, 2016 at 11:53 pm

    Thank you Pastor David for the extensive explanation on Dorje Shugden practice in the Sakya tradition. Contrary to what the Sakya’s denial that they practice Dorje Shugden, it is actually one of the main protector practices in the Sakya lineage. Dorje Shugden was even enthroned by Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen!

    For the Sakyas to deny that they practice Dorje Shugden shows how they choose to bow down to CTA’s pressures of banning the practice in order to be in their good books.

  14. Joy on Mar 21, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    This is amazing Pastor David! Now the world can witness for themselves the truth with these clear proofs that Dorje Shugden was greatly practised not just by the Gelug schools but also Sakya in which DS was originally from!

    Wow looking at how extensive their text on Dorje Shugden is… this is their DS Kangso, 149 pages long! If it was merely just a minor ‘spirit’ practice then why is there a whole Kangso text on Shugden? This is another truth unveil about the lies the Tibetan Leadership tells people and WHY did the Sakya Trinzin lie? Was his arm twisted by the CTA? I suppose it could be so. Why else would He make such a grave lie when all the older monks of Sakya would be know and would probably have these same thangkas, which apparently was distributed freely 20 years ago.

    Now what else are the Tibetan leadership going to say and if they or Sakya Trinzin continues to deny any of this, it will be clear for the world to take note on how they much lies have been created to support the illegal ban on DOrje Shugden practice.

    How can Dorje Shugden be considered a spirit or evil if two of the Sakya Trizins (31st and 37th) were even considered incarnations of Dorje Shugden? If the Sakyas accuses and keep saying Dorje Shugden is a spirit or demon, then it is saying that their lineage masters were “possessed by spirits and so many masters could be fooled and not see through them? What is the use of believing and taking refuge in your Guru or Buddhism then?

  15. Chris Chong on Mar 20, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for sharing this article. Thank you Pastor David for the extensive research and present it in such nice tabs.

    From this article, I had learnt that Dorje Shugden is not a gelug-only Protector. It was said that Dorje Shugden only protects the Gelug lineage and only the Geluga propitiates him. The evidence is found here. The earliest lineage that added Dorje Shugden into their panteon of protectors is the Sakyas. They are the first one to entrone him as a Protector and propitiated him. Even until now, the main temple at Mug Chung is still a holy place for Dorje Shugden where we invoke him during the Pujas.

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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

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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.

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

Noticeboard

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  • Stella Cheang
    Monday, Jan 23. 2017 09:46 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for this contest to create awareness on the plight of our dinner, before they ended up on our plate. The meat that ended up on our dinner plates are not some chemically produced lifeless “thing”. They are animals who have feelings, can feel pain and suffer a great deal under unhygienic environment, probably able to feel more than us for that matter. This is a fact. We should not ignore it and blindfold our conscious by pretending that the meat we are consuming led a happy life and died peacefully before they ended up on our plate. Do our part by contributing to less suffering for the animals. Go vegetarian.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/win-a-manjushri-statue.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Monday, Jan 23. 2017 09:23 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for the sharing.
  • Tsem Rinpoche
    Monday, Jan 23. 2017 05:52 PM
    The Tibetan government in exile in North India (CTA) has in their laws and charters that if you practice Dorje Shugden as your spiritual path:

    1. You are not allowed in Tibetan hospitals.
    2. Your children are not allowed in Tibetan schools.
    3. You may not join in community events in the refugee communities throughout India.
    4. You may not work in any jobs provided by Tibetan govt even if you are qualified within India.
    5. You are not allowed to attend any public talks by the Dalai Lama even secular in nature. You are checked for ID at the door claiming it’s for security.
    6. They restrict your travel by taking extra lengths to complicate issuing you proper papers.
    7. During public speeches, they denigrade the deity Dorje Shugden in order to have public opinion turned against those who practice Dorje Shugden.
    8. They create videos, documentaries and books ‘advertising’ Dorje Shugden as a bad deity. But they call this ‘advice’ only. They allocate much needed funds towards materials with ‘evidence’ that Dorje Shugden is harmful. What kind of government fund campaigns against a particular religion?
    9. They bar/expel you from from entering monasteries based on the fact you practice Dorje Shugden.
    10. Because they have received international pressure and was embarassed, they do not directly restrict you from the practice of Dorje Shugden but produce materials to speak against this faith isolating individuals who continue from the community.
    11. They have smear campaigns funded by the CTA’s Dept of Information & International Relations on social media to destroy the reputation of certain Tibetan teachers who continue to practice Dorje Shugden.
    12. They villify Dorje Shugden practitoners as people who are against Tibetan freedom, Tibetan culture and conveniently called them China spies and violent. This is part of their campaign. Why would China pay anyone to pray to Dorje Shugden? I do not know about others, but I receive no payment for my spiritual practice of Dorje Shugden from any individual, organization or government. I am accused of this as a smear campaign to silence me. But prove clearly that I receive payment from any govt or organization for my practice of Dorje Shugden. If you cannot prove it but continue to say so, then it’s an organized smear campaign from the Dept of Information & International Relations of the CTA in Dharamsala for what they see as defiance when it’s really religious freedom.
    13. Tibetan government in exile has been known to encourage the crowd to harm Dorje Shugden practitioners by posting ‘wanted’ posters of well known and defiant Dorje Shugden practitoners in the 24 refugee communities throughout India.
    14. Whatever donations, gifts, items, help given to the Tibetan govt, their hospitals, Monasteries, schools, individuals by Dorje Shugden practitioners prior to the ban against Dorje Shugden in 1996 has not been refunded or returned. Many Dorje Shugden practitioners including myself have made substantial donations to many sectors of the Tibetan refugee communities and monasteries and all items and monies have not been returned. If Dorje Shugden practitioners are bad, why keep their donations and gifts but restrict their presence?

    I have nothing against Tibet, Tibetans or His Holiness the Dalai Lama. In fact I wish His Holiness long life and health always. I have never said in speech or print any negative word against His Holiness the Dalai Lama. But this ban against Dorje Shugden practitioners is unfair, undemocratic and against human rights. It must be addressed, revoked and removed. It is creating a huge rift within Tibetan communities where we need to be united to preserve our culture, religion and way of life around the world. Whether an individual wishes to practice Dorje Shugden or not is up to the individual, but there should be no restrictions or prejudice created by CTA for engaging in this practice. Now in the 21st century, only in the Tibetan communities lead by CTA, there is heavy religious discrimination. But some find it hard to believe because it does not match the reputation of the Dalai Lama in which the CTA is under. If there is no ban and systematic controlled and funded tyranny against Dorje Shugden practitioners like myself, why should I speak up or say these things? I have no gains to speak up if it was not true. There are thousands of other individuals who can attest to all I have said and much proof to find even on the internet. This systematic tyranny against the fundamental human right of religious choice to practice Dorje Shugden must stop before it creates more damage to individuals and groups and at the same time bringing down the reputation of the CTA or Tibetan govt in exile headquartered in Dharamsala, North India as backward and tyrannical.

    Tsem Rinpoche
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
  • sonnytan
    Monday, Jan 23. 2017 01:37 PM
    sonny tan on Jan 23, 2017 at 1:33 pm
    Hello jeff Weegee, you came here to insult our guru and claimed that he gets monetary support from China without any documentary,evidential, bullet proof and solid evidence. In the eyes of the learned criminal court judges this statement itself is very defamatory and you can be sued for character assasination and defamation. However, you are not very smart enough thinking that by coming here and abusing our kind guru’s nature and forgiving heart with such nonsensical unproven lies he will not institute further action. It only means that you wantonly and deliberately wants to hurt my guru’s good name thinking that by saying the above he will not retaliate but I beg to differ as you will never know what his students have in store for people of loose characters. We may not be as forgiving as our guru because you intentionally wants to ruin my guru’s reputation and that itself is an urgent call for us to defend him when viciously attacked. We will vehemently pursue such unproven accusations without repose and put to rest all these once and for all and eventually let justice prevails
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 22. 2017 06:05 PM
    Yes it is time to worry for sure if we are not doing anything to protect our earth , environment and animals .There’s the threat that climate change will do more harm.One recent study found that as temperatures rise over the next century.Marine life of dolphins , leatherback sea turtles and so forth are affected .Sooner or later they will be extnct due to global warming. .Scientists discovered environmental pollution can cause human fertility.
    Human activity, including over fishing, unsustainable agriculture, a dramatic loss in natural habitats, and—of course—climate change are to be blamed. Hence it is indeed a time to worry and put in more effort to protect our environment and earth.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this informative article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/is-it-time-to-worry.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 22. 2017 03:27 PM
    The global warming has become alarming and at risks. Arctic drilling could speed up global warming and harm endangered wildlife in the Arctic. Its good that former US President Obama ban offshore drilling untill 2022. Even though this ban only last for five years it is at least protected. With the new President Trump ,i do hope he won’t withdrew global effort to reduce fossil fuel emission and hoping that more people are aware of what happening to the arctic .
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article and videos too.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/offshore-drilling-in-arctic-banned.html
  • Lin Mun
    Saturday, Jan 21. 2017 08:47 PM
    It is very sad that the effect of pollution and rubbish is getting worse. All of us are living in this world and have the responsibilities to take care of our environment. We can stop all this by starting from our self. Always be mindful, throw rubbish in the right place and use more recycle items.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/plastic-pollution-in-deep-sea-is-alarming.html
  • Lin Mun
    Saturday, Jan 21. 2017 08:33 PM
    Kaizen practise is a good method to start training our mind to push ourselves and do something new everyday for 1 minute. Because it start with 1 minute, we would not have reason to not do it. Once we started to learn something new and continuously doing it, we will get use to and improve it further.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/the-one-minute-method-for-overcoming-laziness.html
  • Alice Tay
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 10:38 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for your kindness and compassion and also the support team to have this short prayer translated into Tibetan language. This is great to let more people from different countries and races to read this wonderful prayer to Dorje Shugden.

    May everyone be blessed by Dorje Shugden and able to meet a qualified guru to learn and practice dharma for the benefit of others.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/a-short-prayer-to-dorje-shugden-tibetan.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 08:33 PM
    Beautiful, inspiring and so touching story…. of Alvaro Munera a former bullfighter. He is a real hero who learned his lesson through reason and thinking.That is really great of him and even campaigning against bullfighting.He accepted his faith and realized that animals do have feelings too.Not to harm them but to protect them.
    Thank you Rinpoche foe sharing such a touching story
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/do-not-miss-this-so-touching.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 07:50 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing Its alarming that plastic pollution has already reached deep oceans which has negatively affecting deep sea animals.The researchers found inside the deep sea animals were polyester, nylon and acrylic.That is bad enough causing ingestion in deep sea animals, such as sea cucumbers, hermit crabs and squat lobsters .Sooner or later they are becoming extinct due to all these plastic pollution. Deep sea animals have the freedom to live too. Do hope all of us take responsibility to care for the environment. Attitude and educating ourselves and sharing with others on the best and safest ways of disposal of rubbish will be wonderful.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/plastic-pollution-in-deep-sea-is-alarming.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 04:33 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing. It is so sad to learn about the negative impact of our human lifestyle and usage on the animals living in deep sea. Nothing on this Earth can escape our influence because we are a member and a crucial one for all intent and purposes, of this big ecosystem call Earth. I hope through these discoveries and learning, it will awaken our conscious to do something to preserve Earth.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/plastic-pollution-in-deep-sea-is-alarming.html#comments
  • Stella Cheang
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 04:21 PM
    It is wonderful to learn about the Yayasan Kechara Indonesia team’s effort in fundraising by conquering Mt Rinjani. It is also very meaningful to find out the members of this hike overcome personal and physical limitation to reach the peak. “…thinking Instead of just letting life throw random challenges at me, I should go ahead and provide myself with truly meaningful challenges.” Rejoice and well done! Thank you for this sharing, Valentina.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/students-friends/guess-what-we-did-on-mt-rijani.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 12:28 AM
    Taking baby steps to train up our consistency and persistency is really a cool innovation from the traditional “cold turkey” approach. Since this is a trust and proven method, we should give it a try and conquer one of our limitation. Thank you Rinpoche for the sharing.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/the-one-minute-method-for-overcoming-laziness.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Friday, Jan 20. 2017 12:22 AM
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing. Great to be informed of this alternative that deters insects and rodents from getting too intimate with us. The smell of mint is really nice and it has many benefits to our human body too. Hence, it will be a good idea to add mint leaves into our grocery shopping list.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/try-this-to-repel-insects-in-your-house.html

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

CREDITS

Concept: Tsem Rinpoche
Technical: Lew Kwan Leng, Justin Ripley, Yong Swee Keong
Design: Justin Ripley, Cynthia Lee
Content: Tsem Rinpoche, Justin Ripley, Pastor Shin Tan, Sarah Yap
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.
I am in the process of creating beautiful Dorje Shugden and Kechara Forest Retreat watches at this time. So we can take precious protector and Kechara Forest Retreat wherever we go and be blessed everytime we see what time it is. 
I am perfecting the designs with a great team and will update when done but these are just some samples that arrived. 
Feast your eyes! 

Tsem Rinpoche
1 week ago
I am in the process of creating beautiful Dorje Shugden and Kechara Forest Retreat watches at this time. So we can take precious protector and Kechara Forest Retreat wherever we go and be blessed everytime we see what time it is. I am perfecting the designs with a great team and will update when done but these are just some samples that arrived. Feast your eyes! Tsem Rinpoche
                        Pick the practice, devotion and precepts of Vajra Yogini\'s path over everything and anything in samsara. Samsara has nothing of value and nothing lasting to offer. You are born in suffering, live in suffering, die in suffering and enter bardo and future lives expecting more sufferings. This is not a negative way of looking at things but the truth. If the truth is negative, so it is the truth. Devote oneself to the guru, dharma work, dharma practice and bringing dharma to others compassionately. Choose to practice Vajra Yogini now with the preliminaries. You can start right now: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/starting-on-vajra-yogini-now.html  Much care, Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Pick the practice, devotion and precepts of Vajra Yogini's path over everything and anything in samsara. Samsara has nothing of value and nothing lasting to offer. You are born in suffering, live in suffering, die in suffering and enter bardo and future lives expecting more sufferings. This is not a negative way of looking at things but the truth. If the truth is negative, so it is the truth. Devote oneself to the guru, dharma work, dharma practice and bringing dharma to others compassionately. Choose to practice Vajra Yogini now with the preliminaries. You can start right now: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/starting-on-vajra-yogini-now.html Much care, Tsem Rinpoche
Message to Tibetans in English
3 weeks ago
Message to Tibetans in English
Message to the Tibetans
3 weeks ago
Message to the Tibetans
Left to right: Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, 101st Gaden Tripa Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal. Great lamas of Gaden Shartse Monastery
4 weeks ago
Left to right: Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, 101st Gaden Tripa Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal. Great lamas of Gaden Shartse Monastery
A beautiful Indian rendition of Gyenze Dorje Shugden manifesting in wealth form
4 weeks ago
A beautiful Indian rendition of Gyenze Dorje Shugden manifesting in wealth form
This is my thoughts and determination to share with you. Please open and read. Thank you for your time. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
This is my thoughts and determination to share with you. Please open and read. Thank you for your time. Tsem Rinpoche
Nepalese King Birendra receives His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche in Nepal
1 month ago
Nepalese King Birendra receives His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche in Nepal
Guess what Zava Damdin Rinpoche did in Mongolia recently with 7,800 people??? Very interesting and it is a must read:  http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116206
1 month ago
Guess what Zava Damdin Rinpoche did in Mongolia recently with 7,800 people??? Very interesting and it is a must read:  http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116206
This huge Buddha in Korea is magnificent
2 months ago
This huge Buddha in Korea is magnificent
The very first oracle of Dorje Shugden in trance statue. I have commissioned this.
2 months ago
The very first oracle of Dorje Shugden in trance statue. I have commissioned this.
Such a old and ancient thangka painting of Dorje Shugden. He has been around in Tibet practiced for hundreds of years.
2 months ago
Such a old and ancient thangka painting of Dorje Shugden. He has been around in Tibet practiced for hundreds of years.
One of the "Four Exalted Brothers" Avalokiteshvara statues, Phagpa Wati of Kyirong, which is now with H.H. the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala.
2 months ago
One of the "Four Exalted Brothers" Avalokiteshvara statues, Phagpa Wati of Kyirong, which is now with H.H. the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala.
Kyabje Zemey, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche and Kyabje Pabongka Choktrul Rinpoche
2 months ago
Kyabje Zemey, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche and Kyabje Pabongka Choktrul Rinpoche
My Oser girl and Mumu boy are so adorable
2 months ago
My Oser girl and Mumu boy are so adorable
Wow this meditator in his cave in front of a painting of Yamantaka draped with a white khata of respect. He sits among bones to remind him of impermanence and our future. The bones inspire him strongly to let go of all attachments in this life and focus on dharma, meditation and liberation and he is doing so. Very beautiful and inspirational. Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
Wow this meditator in his cave in front of a painting of Yamantaka draped with a white khata of respect. He sits among bones to remind him of impermanence and our future. The bones inspire him strongly to let go of all attachments in this life and focus on dharma, meditation and liberation and he is doing so. Very beautiful and inspirational. Tsem Rinpoche
Tenzing Norgay found this in Nepal. Guess what it is?
3 months ago
Tenzing Norgay found this in Nepal. Guess what it is?
Sir Edmund Hillary
3 months ago
Sir Edmund Hillary
Halloween is my favorite holiday. Wild natural plants and flowers are my favorite offering. Buddha\'s teachings on meditation and Yidam practice bring the ultimate results and happiness. ~Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
Halloween is my favorite holiday. Wild natural plants and flowers are my favorite offering. Buddha's teachings on meditation and Yidam practice bring the ultimate results and happiness. ~Tsem Rinpoche
Previous lives do resemble current lives especially if they are a recognized incarnation. If notice how similar the previous and current Trijang Rinpoche looks. The eyes, bone structure, expression, long neck, thin and overall look. Beautiful. I\'ve seen this phenomena over and over in many Rinpoche incarnations. Especially when you compare them with pictures of previous and current lives at around the same ages. Something powerfully karmic about this. Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
Previous lives do resemble current lives especially if they are a recognized incarnation. If notice how similar the previous and current Trijang Rinpoche looks. The eyes, bone structure, expression, long neck, thin and overall look. Beautiful. I've seen this phenomena over and over in many Rinpoche incarnations. Especially when you compare them with pictures of previous and current lives at around the same ages. Something powerfully karmic about this. Tsem Rinpoche
It\'s nice to have monks visitors and resident monks in Kechara
4 months ago
It's nice to have monks visitors and resident monks in Kechara
                         Taken in Lake Champlain in Canada. A huge water monster...neat...
4 months ago
Taken in Lake Champlain in Canada. A huge water monster...neat...
Beautiful! His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang has always been good friends with His Holiness Karmapa. No wonder H.H. Karmapa never spoke against Dorje Shugden. Two reasons perhaps: One is he knows the qualities of Trijang Rinpoche who is a attained being. And Karmapa himself has clairvoyance to perceive the true nature of Dorje Shugden directly. I love to see great beings like this manifesting closeness. When I see, I just want to prostrate to them and thank them for sharing such good examples to someone like me. Praise to the ego-less mind! Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
Beautiful! His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang has always been good friends with His Holiness Karmapa. No wonder H.H. Karmapa never spoke against Dorje Shugden. Two reasons perhaps: One is he knows the qualities of Trijang Rinpoche who is a attained being. And Karmapa himself has clairvoyance to perceive the true nature of Dorje Shugden directly. I love to see great beings like this manifesting closeness. When I see, I just want to prostrate to them and thank them for sharing such good examples to someone like me. Praise to the ego-less mind! Tsem Rinpoche
Serkong Dorje Chang on the left and his son Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche on the right.
4 months ago
Serkong Dorje Chang on the left and his son Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche on the right.
High lamas in France September 2016
4 months ago
High lamas in France September 2016
༧གོང་ས་ཆེན་པོ་སྐུ་འཕྲེང་བཅུ་བཞི་པ་མཆོག་དང་རྡོ་རྗེ་ཤུགས་ལྡན། - Interesting relationship between 14th Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden:   http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=109757
4 months ago
༧གོང་ས་ཆེན་པོ་སྐུ་འཕྲེང་བཅུ་བཞི་པ་མཆོག་དང་རྡོ་རྗེ་ཤུགས་ལྡན། - Interesting relationship between 14th Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=109757
Dalai Lama Says We Can Practise Dorje Shugden Finally! Read more on this development--- http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=109777
4 months ago
Dalai Lama Says We Can Practise Dorje Shugden Finally! Read more on this development--- http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=109777
More time spent in dharma work is more karma collected to be happy and more time spent in non-dharma works is more karma collected to be unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
More time spent in dharma work is more karma collected to be happy and more time spent in non-dharma works is more karma collected to be unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche
All Dorje Shugden prophesizes will come to pass,
 Those who generate refuge and merits will trust, 
 By trusting one will see the good results of his pronouncements,
 By seeing the good results, one\'s path becomes more clear, 
 The path of practice, purification and siddhic results, 
 This would eliminate the samsara within our minds.
 ~Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
All Dorje Shugden prophesizes will come to pass, Those who generate refuge and merits will trust, By trusting one will see the good results of his pronouncements, By seeing the good results, one's path becomes more clear, The path of practice, purification and siddhic results, This would eliminate the samsara within our minds. ~Tsem Rinpoche
Large Dorje Shugden statue built by the 5th Dalai Lama and housed in Trode Khangsar. Sock Wand and Mdm Chuah took this picture in Lhasa, Tibet 2016
4 months ago
Large Dorje Shugden statue built by the 5th Dalai Lama and housed in Trode Khangsar. Sock Wand and Mdm Chuah took this picture in Lhasa, Tibet 2016
Our own Kecharian Mdm. Chua with the oracle of Dorje Shugden Gen Tenzin Tsultrim in Lhasa, Tibet 2016
4 months ago
Our own Kecharian Mdm. Chua with the oracle of Dorje Shugden Gen Tenzin Tsultrim in Lhasa, Tibet 2016
Our very own Kecharian Mdm Chua standing in front of holy Trode Khangsar-the Chapel to Dorje Shugden built 400 years ago by the Great 5th Dalai Lama-Tibet 2016
4 months ago
Our very own Kecharian Mdm Chua standing in front of holy Trode Khangsar-the Chapel to Dorje Shugden built 400 years ago by the Great 5th Dalai Lama-Tibet 2016
Our very own Kecharian Mdm Chua standing in front of holy Gaden Monastery, Tibet 2016
4 months ago
Our very own Kecharian Mdm Chua standing in front of holy Gaden Monastery, Tibet 2016
                         This is the oracle of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa, Tibet. His name is Gen Tenzin Tsultrim of Sera Monastery in Tibet.
4 months ago
This is the oracle of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa, Tibet. His name is Gen Tenzin Tsultrim of Sera Monastery in Tibet.
Ms. Sock Wan, Oracle of Dorje Shugden in Tibet Gen Tenzin Tsultrim, Mdm Chuah and Mr. Tashi in Tibet 2016
4 months ago
Ms. Sock Wan, Oracle of Dorje Shugden in Tibet Gen Tenzin Tsultrim, Mdm Chuah and Mr. Tashi in Tibet 2016
Mahasiddha Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche, H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and Ven. Rabten Choktrul Rinpoche 2016
4 months ago
Mahasiddha Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche, H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and Ven. Rabten Choktrul Rinpoche 2016
His Eminence Mahasiddha Gangchen Rinpoche and the official oracle of Dorje Shugden Panglung Kuten Choji lah in Italy together September 2016
4 months ago
His Eminence Mahasiddha Gangchen Rinpoche and the official oracle of Dorje Shugden Panglung Kuten Choji lah in Italy together September 2016
My thoughts on Malaysia. Thank you. Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
My thoughts on Malaysia. Thank you. Tsem Rinpoche
Beautiful thangka of Vajra Yogini. Look at the details where she appears in visions and also takes people to Kechara.
4 months ago
Beautiful thangka of Vajra Yogini. Look at the details where she appears in visions and also takes people to Kechara.
Left to right:

His Holiness the Gaden Throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche (very young) and His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Prayer Hall during prayers.
4 months ago
Left to right: His Holiness the Gaden Throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche (very young) and His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Prayer Hall during prayers.
 It\'s nice when families support the spiritual journeys of their children. This is one beautiful family of Pastor Niral of Kechara
4 months ago
It's nice when families support the spiritual journeys of their children. This is one beautiful family of Pastor Niral of Kechara
Jog Falls a power place of Vajra Yogini and Heruka: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=108652
4 months ago
Jog Falls a power place of Vajra Yogini and Heruka: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=108652
Don\'t wait for the perfect group. Don\'t wait for the perfect person. Don\'t wait for the perfect situation. Don\'t expect yourself to be perfect. Don\'t even look for perfection at least in our realm as it does not exist or time will run out. Just get going and keep doing good. It\'s between you and yourself. Tsem Rinpoche
5 months ago
Don't wait for the perfect group. Don't wait for the perfect person. Don't wait for the perfect situation. Don't expect yourself to be perfect. Don't even look for perfection at least in our realm as it does not exist or time will run out. Just get going and keep doing good. It's between you and yourself. Tsem Rinpoche
Kind people are to be treasured. They make life worth living. ~Tsem Rinpoche
5 months ago
Kind people are to be treasured. They make life worth living. ~Tsem Rinpoche
Don\'t you love her bag? She\'s stylish and at one with the universe. OM Shanti. ~Tsem Rinpoche
5 months ago
Don't you love her bag? She's stylish and at one with the universe. OM Shanti. ~Tsem Rinpoche
Beautiful Manjushri carved in China
5 months ago
Beautiful Manjushri carved in China
Sent from Samsung tablet.
5 months ago
Sent from Samsung tablet.
We must loyal to our guru. How to be loyal? To always do the teachings and practice he gave us and to conquer our laziness. We must make our gurus more important than our ego. So it is important to always let our guru win and not our ego. If our ego wins, many will suffer and we will suffer. If our guru wins, temporarily we suffer, but long term we will be happy and many around us will be happy. You see, the guru is always on the look out to give us methods and teachings that we can engage in to bring us happiness. The biggest happiness is overcoming our ego and it\'s traces and the guru always directly and indirectly focuses on that. Our guru will always love and help us, but we must meet our guru half way too. Tsem Rinpoche
5 months ago
We must loyal to our guru. How to be loyal? To always do the teachings and practice he gave us and to conquer our laziness. We must make our gurus more important than our ego. So it is important to always let our guru win and not our ego. If our ego wins, many will suffer and we will suffer. If our guru wins, temporarily we suffer, but long term we will be happy and many around us will be happy. You see, the guru is always on the look out to give us methods and teachings that we can engage in to bring us happiness. The biggest happiness is overcoming our ego and it's traces and the guru always directly and indirectly focuses on that. Our guru will always love and help us, but we must meet our guru half way too. Tsem Rinpoche
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Videos On The Go

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  • Great spiritual rock carving in Tibet
    3 days ago
    Great spiritual rock carving in Tibet
  • You will Never be Ready
    1 month ago
    You will Never be Ready
    Dear friends, watch this video and ready, if we keep waiting till we are ready, that day will never come. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Stop asking for Easy
    1 month ago
    Stop asking for Easy
    This video is powerful because it's the truth. It applies to anything. It applies to our dharma practice. Watch the video and share it. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Must Watch this Video!
    2 months ago
    Must Watch this Video!
  • Sacred Tibetan Incense - Nyimo County, Lhasa, Tibet
    3 months ago
    Sacred Tibetan Incense - Nyimo County, Lhasa, Tibet
  • Kyabje Denma Gonsa Rinpoche on Samaya
    3 months ago
    Kyabje Denma Gonsa Rinpoche on Samaya
    ཁྱེད་ཀྱི་བཀའ་སློབ་དོན་སྙིང་དེ།།གང་གི་རྣ་བར་བདུད་རྩི་མོད།།འོན་ཀྱང་འགའ་ཡི་རྣ་ལམ་དུ།། བྲག་ཆ་བཞིན་དུ་འགྱུར་སྲིད་མོད།། ཚང་མས་ཚར་རེ་གཟིགས་རོགས།། Kyabje Denma Gonsa Rinpoche telling people that it is important to have guru samaya. It use to be that way in the great monasteries. We should not create problems and schisms. If we want to practice a protector, then do so, if not it's okay, but don't make trouble. One should just practice the Buddha Dharma well. To do good practice. If you have faith in Dorje Shugden and trust all the way, he will definitely help you. But most important is to practice the dharma. This is his advice in short here. It's good to let more Tibetans hear this holy speech and appeal by this very senior Rinpoche. TR
  • His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Propitiating Protectors & Oracles
    3 months ago
    His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Propitiating Protectors & Oracles
    This was on FB and I came across it. His Holiness said in Tibetan institutions there is a lot of propitiating protector/oracles and this is not what Buddhism is about. So they are putting Nechung/Tema oracles within the video to say what is he talking about when he does it himself. This is confusing is the message to his people. TR
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    3 months ago
    Look how this crab eats a cherry.. Incredible and cute... Never seen this before. They have feelings too. Tsem Rinpoche
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    Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche recites offering stanza to Dorje Shugden Septemeber 2016
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    Flying the flag proudly
    Just like the rays of the sun, Dorje Shugden's blessings shines on all
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    Make your commutes a little more interesting with an article from TsemRinpoche.com

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CHAT PICTURES

Students are drawn to Teacher Irene because of her kind and loving demeanour. Stella, KSDS
9 hours ago
Students are drawn to Teacher Irene because of her kind and loving demeanour. Stella, KSDS
Teacher Zhen Yue is really good with kids. Stella, KSDS
9 hours ago
Teacher Zhen Yue is really good with kids. Stella, KSDS
Kechara Sunday Dharma School opens for students from as young as 2 years old up until 18 years old. Classes are conducted in both english and mandarin. Stella, KSDS
9 hours ago
Kechara Sunday Dharma School opens for students from as young as 2 years old up until 18 years old. Classes are conducted in both english and mandarin. Stella, KSDS
Jarrett Yu is 5 years old and he can do prostration and recite Migtsema mantra on his own. Stella, KSDS
9 hours ago
Jarrett Yu is 5 years old and he can do prostration and recite Migtsema mantra on his own. Stella, KSDS
Lovely sister and brother attending KSDS classes. KSDS welcome enrolments from students as young as 2 years old. Stella, KSDS
9 hours ago
Lovely sister and brother attending KSDS classes. KSDS welcome enrolments from students as young as 2 years old. Stella, KSDS
Learn for meditation for calm and peaceful mind. Alice Tay, KSDS
yesterday
Learn for meditation for calm and peaceful mind. Alice Tay, KSDS
KSDS students followed Teacher Kien to do prostrations before the class start. Alice Tay, KSDS
yesterday
KSDS students followed Teacher Kien to do prostrations before the class start. Alice Tay, KSDS
Beautiful artworks done by Kechara Sunday Dharma School from age 2-17 years old. Alice Tay, KSDS
yesterday
Beautiful artworks done by Kechara Sunday Dharma School from age 2-17 years old. Alice Tay, KSDS
Participants take turn to do the soap. Alice Tay, KSDS
yesterday
Participants take turn to do the soap. Alice Tay, KSDS
Woah Camp 2016 participants were happy with their own make soap. Alice Tay, KSDS
yesterday
Woah Camp 2016 participants were happy with their own make soap. Alice Tay, KSDS
Yesterdays Visitors in Kechara Forest Retreat at the Vajrayogini Stupa
2 days ago
Yesterdays Visitors in Kechara Forest Retreat at the Vajrayogini Stupa
17 fortunate visitors had the opportunity to make offering and circumambulate at World Largest Dorje Shugden statue at Wisdom Hall, Kechara Forest Retreat. Lucy Yap
2 days ago
17 fortunate visitors had the opportunity to make offering and circumambulate at World Largest Dorje Shugden statue at Wisdom Hall, Kechara Forest Retreat. Lucy Yap
Circumambulating at Lama Tsongkapa Shrine. Lucy Yap
2 days ago
Circumambulating at Lama Tsongkapa Shrine. Lucy Yap
Today's visitors to Kechara Forest Retreat. They were taken on a tour by Puja Team members. Lucy Yap
2 days ago
Today's visitors to Kechara Forest Retreat. They were taken on a tour by Puja Team members. Lucy Yap
Learn about birds & how to take care of them. Lin Mun KSDS
3 days ago
Learn about birds & how to take care of them. Lin Mun KSDS
Look at my new skirts. I'm ready for graduation rehearsal. Lin Mun KSDS
3 days ago
Look at my new skirts. I'm ready for graduation rehearsal. Lin Mun KSDS
The dharma sisters :) Lin Mun ksds
3 days ago
The dharma sisters :) Lin Mun ksds
Great sharing from the teenage class on Rinpoche's bio. Lin Mun KSDS
3 days ago
Great sharing from the teenage class on Rinpoche's bio. Lin Mun KSDS
Nurture the children with good values from young. The aim of Kechara Sunday Dharma School. Lin Mun KSDS
3 days ago
Nurture the children with good values from young. The aim of Kechara Sunday Dharma School. Lin Mun KSDS
Pastor Gim Lee perform prayers for a sponsor during her beloved pet dog's funeral. Lucy Yap
5 days ago
Pastor Gim Lee perform prayers for a sponsor during her beloved pet dog's funeral. Lucy Yap
Make lots of merits for the Year ahead! Join our Grand Dorje Shugden Pujas next 3. & 4. February 2017 with many Highlights!
5 days ago
Make lots of merits for the Year ahead! Join our Grand Dorje Shugden Pujas next 3. & 4. February 2017 with many Highlights!
Pet Funeral services provided by Heavenly Gate Memorial Service Sdn Bhd, Bentong , Malaysia.  YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
5 days ago
Pet Funeral services provided by Heavenly Gate Memorial Service Sdn Bhd, Bentong , Malaysia. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
Visitors visited Mother Tara and pay respects. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
5 days ago
Visitors visited Mother Tara and pay respects. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
Another New Dorje Shugden Chapel at Bentong. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
5 days ago
Another New Dorje Shugden Chapel at Bentong. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
Treat others like the way you wish to be treated.  YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
5 days ago
Treat others like the way you wish to be treated. YEO KWAI GIN ( KKSG )
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Dorje Shugden
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