Do women make good Buddhist Pastors?

Jul 22, 2012 | Views: 1,037
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DO WOMEN MAKE GOOD PASTORS??
 
I created a system within Kechara where ‘ordinary’ people of all backgrounds, genders, orientation and lifestyles can share or teach the dharma to others. They are called Pastors. To me I chose the word Pastor because it is wonderful that lay people wish to do more but are not monks/nuns. Although labels are not necessary to teach dharma, being a Pastor will help others to identify a committed person who shares dharma. Nothing more and nothing less.
 
Almost gone are the days where only monks, men in big hats and titles can efficiently teach the holy dharma. I think there are people with bills to pay, kids to raise, family obligations to complete and who are just fallible human beings who can share dharma from their hearts based on learning and experience. Who are good people. I think the monks/nuns are great and they are an inspiration, but sometimes hard to achieve for many of us. We do have our defilements, attachments and neurosis, but we also have compassion, care, love, life experiences too that can benefit others. So to me Pastors are people who are just people but take the special responsibility to share the dharma along with the responsibilities they have to fulfill or committed to even before they met the dharma.
 
I feel all people can be a great inspiration, great teacher and a great model of pastorship to bring dharma to others. Being a Pastor you take on special Pastor’s vows I have composed, and you engage in dharma studies and practice too. (http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/kechara-13-depts/first-ever-buddhist-pastor-ordination.html )
 
I have had all types of thoughts within the Malaysian Buddhist community that Buddhist Pastors shouldn’t give refuge and how could they replace monks/nuns. They are not replacing the monks/nuns. They are just increasing the chances of many others who are not monks/nuns but qualified to teach and can teach Dharma. They help to bring Dharma to many others. Also just because you are a monk or nun does not mean you are qualified to teach either.
 
I think it is very important to have Buddhist Pastors of all backgrounds and genders to bring dharma to others simply because it would suit many different types of people. I think everyone is the same.
 
I have heard doubts regarding women doing this and I do not see a distinction. I think some women are are much more powerful than men and vice versa. I think the age of discrimination against women or anyone should come to an end.
 
What do you think? Please share your thoughts to help others understand better. Knowledge helps us overcome ignorance. It makes a difference to hear different opinions… 
 
Can women be ‘as’ spiritual as men? Will they be as respected in a spiritual role which is ‘traditionally’ dominated by men? Will women be accepted? Why or why not? If not, how can women become accepted in this? Any sources in history of powerful spiritual women? Is it necesary to have women as Pastors and spiritual leaders?
 
CAN WOMEN MAKE GOOD PASTORS?
 
Tsem Rinpoche
 
 
 

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Pastor Responsibilities/vows in Kechara
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63 Responses to Do women make good Buddhist Pastors?

  1. Seng Piow on Jul 22, 2012 at 6:51 am

    Eastern religions translated into English do not have sufficient words. Pastor is another word associated with Judeo Christianity, but not wholly owned by this faith. It can be used by anyone pertaining to any faith if chosen. So why not use a word that has been popularized and mainstream to describe a job that can be done by any person of any religion pertaining to THEIR FAITH, instead introducing another word and lose the point of the job. People do not need to get stuck on the word, but just think of the job.

    So do not get stuck with the word Pastor, the issue is can women be Buddhist Pastors? Why or why not?

    • Zla'od on Jul 23, 2012 at 10:23 am

      “Pastor” (Greek for “shepherd”) is not so much associated with “Judeo Christianity” as with Christianity in particular–and in modern times, even more specifically with Protestantism. This is why it is greeted with some amusement by people outside of Kechara. (If there can be Buddhist pastors, why not Buddhist rabbis or imams?)

      There is some precedent for other religions borrowing Christian titles: “monk”, “nun”, “priest”, “even “His Holiness” for the Dalai Lama (as a translation for kundun, lit. “physical basis,” nirmanakaya). Of course this obscures the many important differences between bikkhus and Christian monks, Shinshu priests vs. Catholic priests, the pope and the Dalai Lama, etc. New religious movements such as Scientology often adopt “Christian” sounding language in order to blend in, and seem more mainstream than they really are.

      One important consideration has to do with the “pastor’s” role. In Protestantism, a pastor would normally lead a church (there can also be associate pastors); in Kechara this does not seem to apply. In some churches he (or depending on denomination, she) would be appointed by the denominational hierarchy and answerable to them; in others, they would be voted in by the congregation and supervised by a vestry committee. Kecharaian “pastors” primarily exercise duties (such as teaching or spiritual counseling) associated with the diaconate (the ministry of deacons), and answer to Tsem Rinopoche–who seems to have assumed the role of “bishop,” and who probably has the power to “defrock” pastors at will. An important difference is that deacons do not normally lead life-cycle ceremonies such as baptisms, weddings, or funerals.

      I agree with the poster who suggested “Dharma Teacher” as a better term. I also cringe at Kechara’s references to “Buddhist baptism” and the like.

      • Sharon Saw on Jul 23, 2012 at 1:23 pm

        As one of the researchers who worked on Tsem Rinpoche’s biography, I visited Rinpoche’s hometown, Howell, New Jersey, in the United States. Interestingly, i found that the Mongolian community in which Rinpoche spent his childhood (from 7-15 years old), referred to their temples/Dharma centres as “Churches” and the monks were called “priests”. I just think that the references used are simply naming conventions and does not take anything away from what they actually are, which Buddhists would know are very different.

        Tsem Rinpoche is the spiritual guide of Kechara – he is not nor has he assumed the role of a bishop. I may be wrong but I would presume that you would know the role of a guru at a Dharma centre which follows the Vajrayana tradition.

        • Zla'od on Jul 24, 2012 at 11:10 am

          The English word “priest” is a little confusing, because it is usually applied to religious professionals who lead rituals (including pre-Christian or non-Christian ones). However, it comes from a Greek word that simply means “elder.” (presbyteros). “Church” is also confusing, since the English word comes from Gk. Kyrios (“The Lord”), but translates other Greek words (ecclesia synagogos)meaning “assembly.”

          I compare Tsem Rinpoche to a bishop because in Orthodox and Catholic ecclesiology, the bishop–though appointed–is technically the highest religious authority (the pope is technically the bishop of Rome), and within his parish, represents the whole church. To be out of communion with the bishop is to be out of communion with the entire church (i.e. denomination). In the same way, Kecharan pastors remain dependent on the Tsem Rinpoche’s continuing endorsement.

          • David Lai on Oct 11, 2012 at 5:31 pm

            I think it is totally inappropriate to make comparisons to Christian equivalent of a Pastor. Tsem Rinpoche is not a Catholic Bishop and the Pastors are not spreading Christianity. They will be Buddhist pastor and strangely people have huge bias against these terms. They are after all just a word like what Sharon says below this. You know Zla’od, it would be nicer if you have something nice to say for a change…

        • Zla'od on Jul 24, 2012 at 11:17 am

          PS The locus classicus of Buddhist adoption of Christian religious trappings would be the Buddhist Churches of America (which have pews and sing hymns).

          • Sharon Saw on Sep 2, 2012 at 11:23 pm

            I have been to the temples of Rashi Gempil Ling and Nyitsan in Howell, New Jersey, which have been referred to as churches and they look just like Tibetan temples, and nothing like the Christian church. In that sense, they are not like the churches you mention.

            Therefore, i still think it is a question of pedantics…. words are words.. they evolve with time depending on culture and circumstance. Rinpoche has explained in a very straightforward manner why the pastors came about and their function.

  2. tsemtulku on Jul 22, 2012 at 6:55 am

    Feminine wisdom contains power, love, growth, and awakening. Worshipping the feminine energy and showing respect to it’s awesome power is revered in the Buddhist tantras taught by Buddha. Tsem Rinpoche

  3. Seng Piow on Jul 22, 2012 at 7:02 am

    Likewise, priests, priestess, nuns, monks are all words in English, but the actual words in Eastern languages are different and the meanings are different also, therefore it is the same here with the word “pastor”, so we don’t have to get caught up with the technical term as long as we understand the meaning it wants to convey.

    • Zla'od on Jul 23, 2012 at 10:32 am

      One difference is that “pastor” carries specifically Christian connotations (Christ as the good shepherd, Christians as his flock), which cause the Buddhist borrowing to sound humorous or even offensive.

  4. keng tan on Jul 22, 2012 at 7:23 am

    Gone are the days of discrimination be it of age, gender, race or creed. Life is too short for people to pick on some groups of people just because they do not feel ‘comfortable’ around them. We should make the most out of the resources we have today, so if someone has the knowledge and ‘knack’ to impart that knowledge, it really doesn’t matter who or what they are, so long as it benefits the masses. In this modern era, to be spiritual is like facing an uphill challenge due to life’s many distractions. Time is of the essence and we do not need to await for a fully fledged monk/nun to teach. As long as a qualified spiritual teacher has identified the appropriate individuals who can teach/share the ‘knowledge’ that is good enough.

  5. Joy on Jul 22, 2012 at 8:33 am

    Pastor is just another word that defines – A layperson having spiritual charge over a person or group/ a spiritual overseers. I find this idea of Female Buddhist pastors really refreshing! In fact it is about time because there is a lack and women are mothers, they are naturally great nurturers, cup with Dharma… what do you get? Tara :) Possessing so much positive energy and strength. If she can share this energy together with Dharma, it would be so powerful and why not??? Women in Tibetan Buddhism has always been revered as supreme. The feminine wisdom contains power, love, growth and awakening and is revered in the tantras taught by Lord Buddha. Hence we have Tara and Vajra Yogini… who is most supreme in helping us achieve our full potential in a single life time. And the fascinating part is that she is ever more so efficacious during this degenerate time. The more degenerate it gets, the more powerful her practice becomes. So yeah… I definitely support this idea, not just because I am a woman myself but well hey EQUANIMITY right?!

  6. patsy on Jul 22, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    Anyone irrespective of gender who is trained, have the knowledge and take the responsibility to share the dharma are qualified to be pastors. A pastor does not be a monk or a nun. There are many monks and nuns who do not have the qualifications to teach. In this modern age, there should not be any discrimination against women. In fact, there are women who are more powerful, respectable and inspirational than men in this age and time. As a woman myself who believes in equality and equanimity, women can be good pastors.

  7. Tenzin Losang on Jul 22, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    Just a little over 200 years ago, having female presidents and heads of states was something almost impossible to even think of. But these days, it’s the norm. We even have female corporate leaders. So people who think that women cannot teach Dharma have a mindset that is just so outdated. They need to update themselves.

  8. Sheryl KH (JB) on Jul 22, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    I believe that both men and women are equally capable of being good pastors. It is discrimination lied within our hearts and minds that make things hard and impossible for women. Nuns of Gebchak Nunnery have already given us very good examples. In the eyes of buddhas, there is no difference between men and women. Spirituality depends on the upbringing, the background, the experiences and the attitudes that a person has, it is not about gender.

    Discrimination kills off many opportunities. At the end we all suffer, because those good ones are ripped off golden chances to do things which they can excel in.

    We all have to open up our hearts, to accept what we see/feel as oddity. Something that looks strange to us does not mean that they cannot perform.

    Women, however, tend to have more emotions than men. It is important that those who aspire to become pastors need to constantly remind themselves that they need to have a well balance of compassion, objectivity and rationality. If women can have a well balance of both emotion and rationality they can make good pastors. Women have this natural inborn ability to relate to people with great compassion, which is a valuable trait in any spirituality works.

  9. Lim (KH JB) on Jul 22, 2012 at 3:48 pm

    We should accept and respect women capability, most of women is more compassion, passion and more mindful. So women sure can be “as” or “more” spiritual as men.

    As Rinpoche comment below “Feminine wisdom contains power, love, growth, and awakening. Worshipping the feminine energy and showing respect to it’s awesome power is revered in the Buddhist tantras taught by Buddha. Tsem Rinpoche” so female is suitable and welcome to be Pastor just like Pastor Susan and Pastor Yek Yee.

  10. Grace ( KSJC ) on Jul 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    Regardless man or women, it depend on how your sincerity & determination to achieve the objective. it depend on individual capability, behavior,attitude..some women also can become president!it is our heart whether want to make things happen, not our gender..

  11. MayOng on Jul 22, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    Any person, regardless of gender – with good intention, sincerity, kind, strong faith, commited, spiritually inclined, well-trained, can help anyone or anything, especially the role of Pastors. The name “pastor” is a label we created. As long as the “pastors” are qualified to teach, given blessings to do so and disciplined – female “pastors” are ok also.

  12. Grace Leong on Jul 22, 2012 at 7:17 pm

    Mother Teresa and Master Cheng Yen are great examples of women “pastors” . Though they were not called “pastors”, they shared wisdom and compassion in everything that they did in their respective organizations . They were very committed to their faith and work , inspiring many around the world . From very humble beginnings , they persevered through trials and tribulations to bring love and care to as many as they could . During their times , women had even less recognition and freedom to “lead”. Women today are generally treated at par with men in most parts of the world . Hence , having more women pastors and spiritual leaders will be a very natural progression and certainly very welcomed by all !

  13. tfreon on Jul 22, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Before Tzu Ji become an international charity organisation like today. Most of the people don’t look up on Nun. Looking around Chinese Buddhist history, mostly monks are the more famous one, i can’t recall any famous nun. To me nuns are very “passive” i am not sure it is because they are a woman thus nothing much can be done.
    This thoughts changed When Master Zheng Yan have done so much to help millions of people. She is a nun, but she did a lot to help others who is in need, she work with many people to make things success. She have many projects that she supervise or gave advise directly.
    The question do women make a good pastor? i personally feel is not the matter the person is a girl or boy. The question is how much you willing to share the Dharma knowledge to other, how much compassion does the person have that she/ him determine to do more for other. Gender can’t be a reason to stop the person from doing anything if she want to.
    Pastorship- Looking at today’s world. Who can truly be a monk or nun? Not easy, but it doesn’t mean that the person not compassion. To be a pastor is a “form” of renunciation or a ‘reminder” that the person needs to do more; to learn seriously more than others; in order to hold the lineage properly. A ‘layman” form of nun and monk is sometimes more convenient to get close to people.
    Thus to me, a pastor, or whether the person is a girl or boy in pastor is not a problems.
    I thanks Rinpoche for providing us a change to learn properly in Buddhism. Not only people from Malaysia but in the future around the world people who are serious to be in Buddhism can be a pastor.

  14. Yvonne on Jul 22, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing, for me what i think for a pastor is the person willing to sharing,willing to learn, willing to spend the time for other, willing the listen for other , willing to do more.
    Can women be ‘as’ spiritual as men? of course ! now a day, women is strong then a men,and characteristics of women is , when she want the things, she will follow until the end !!!This is what is think.

  15. Datuk May on Jul 22, 2012 at 11:53 pm

    In the context of Kechara, a Pastor is ordained by Rinpoche to give us lay people who had missed the chance to be a monk or nun to impart Dharma to others holding onto Pastor vows.

    As such would we not say Pastors are Dharma Teachers. Can you imagine if there are no female teachers in the world.

    To my mind, Teachers are people who imparts knowledge with Passion, Love and Care and therefore if there is such a person who would do so, would it matter on Gender?

    I think women can make good Buddhist Pastors and whatever is to be considered, in the congregation of practitioners there are male and female, why not the female Pastors and male Pastors too.

    Whether any Pastor would be good or not, depends not on Gender but his or her knowledge and passion in spreading the Dharma and love for all sentient beings to be better off in their lives.

  16. Chin on Jul 23, 2012 at 12:07 am

    What makes a good pastor is not an issue of gender. It is rather an issue on how well a person conducts himself/herself, as this person will be looked upon as a role model. The name pastor is but just a title. However when a title is tagged to a person, expectations comes naturally. The bigger the title, the heavier the responsibility. And who are we to say who is qualified to teach and who is not?

  17. Julia Tan on Jul 23, 2012 at 2:31 am

    I think no matter women or men Pastors, they do have many job functions to carry out and they play a very big role in Kechara. Other than teaching Dharma, they pray and do puja, they counseling people, they examine and give advice on cases and issues when people come to them for help. I personally think that women can do a better job especially to help those who are facing domestic problems. Woman pastors normally are more attentive, more intimate, softer etc. They can comfort and accommodate others better especially women.

  18. NadiaG on Jul 23, 2012 at 3:10 am

    Women make excellent pastors in my opinion. We have the natural ability to be compassionate without worrying about what society thinks of us. Our maternal instincts make us natural teachers especially when it comes to nurturing others. In this day and age where society is more evolved women are breaking boundaries…..only because they didn’t have the same opportunities then as they do now….however that is probably more secular in nature. In religious organizations globally, women still take a back seat to men. I am blessed to be in a Sangha that empowers women. Not only do we embrace the idea, it proves how truly progressive we are as an organization. We are truly blessed to have Rinpoche guide us through this in this day and age. If there is one thing that defines us as an organization, I would say that we are extremely progressive in nature.

  19. Ethan Chu on Jul 23, 2012 at 3:20 am

    Men, women alone created so many problems together. We give each other labels, but nothing seem to have a meaning behind. Whether or not Pastor is a label or it is a man or a woman, more importantly is the wonderful meaning behind it. Like I said earlier, we have enough human problems but if there are people who stepped up and do the job to help another sentient being, there is nothing more beautiful than that.

    I thank Rinpoche for being so modern and creating such new legacy in serving the people. As far as I know, there are many powerful well respected female icons throughout the decade. Even in Tibetan Buddhism there are many dakinis, female buddhas emanation and I think it suited the whole spiritual job perfectly with these kind of energy. Besides that, I also hope that there are more different genre of pastors like gays and lesbians, the single mother, the abused ones, the poor one, the beautiful ones, the unwanted in the society. Why? Because they will represent true human voice in the world because even though we are made of men and women, but we come in different kinds. This is what religion is all about, true acceptance.

  20. Jace Chong on Jul 23, 2012 at 10:23 am

    I think the function of pastor is not affected by the gender. In fact, I think it’s good to have pastors of different gender, race and background, they can relate and connect to different type of people to help them.

    For me, seeing Pastor Susan and Pastor Yekyee is very inspiring. They are going all out to help people with their knowledge; there’s no different with male Pastor, like Pastor Chia.

    I have very good experience with Pastor Yekyee, whenever my friend has problem, I will immediately call her up, and she is always be there to help.

    Recently, I have a friend, Shane Lee, her mother had accident and was coma in the hospital. Pastor Yekyee arranged her time to visit her mother a few times, to do prayer. She also taught Shane what to do to dedicate merits to her mom by doing puja, offerings, animal liberation etc. Shane follows the instructions, a few weeks, the mom is awake, everything is ok beside the eyesight yet to recover, but for a coma patient, it’s very good improvement.

    Shane appreciates Pastor Yekyee’s help very much, and would like to bring her mom from Melaka to visit Kechara, and to thank Pastor Yekyee personally.

    Shane read about a similar case of her mom happened to a girl in Penang, who’s coma after accident. She sent a FB message to the girl family and told them what she knew, what to do as taught. The girl gets lots of spiritual support and she is awake now.

    This is one of the example of how a pastor relief one’s from fear and sufferings, and the benefits continue to spread. Thank you Pastor Yekyee and all the pastors in the world, giving your life to serve others. _/\_

  21. Zla'od on Jul 23, 2012 at 10:52 am

    In the comments here I see a lot of reductionist language about gender, e.g. that women are naturally more compassionate than men, or that they possess a special kind of feminine wisdom, etc. To me this kind of rhetoric is as much of a distortion as the belief that women are naturally weak and subordinate.

    As a real-world political matter, Thai Buddhism strongly resists proposals to re-establish the bikkhuni lineage–there are even laws enforcing this. There is a lay class of white-clad dharma practitioner which anyone can join; it confers no special privileges. Tibetan Buddhism does have nuns, but remains male-dominated. It is hard to imagine this changing.

    Taiwan is really the only country where a female Buddhist leader has managed to effect fundamental changes. For example, nuns far outnumber monks now, and tend to be more respected. However, Master Zhengyan is in many ways a very traditional Confucian, who urges women to obey their husbands. Her own role is rather unique, since within the organization she is held to be a manifestation of the bodhisattva Guanyin. Ordinary women in Tzu Chi (Ciji) would not experience the organization as especially feminist, and other major Buddhist organizations continue to be led by men.

  22. Mei Fong on Jul 23, 2012 at 11:35 am

    I think women are fine to be Pastors as we currently already have two in Kechara house and they are absolutely fantastic. There are more girls / women pastor in training currently and i am happy for that. There are certain issues girls could touch and not by men and vice versa. I am thinking sex discrimination should no longer exist in this era where we are moving from the non-technological era to a more advance technological era where the amount of information is the key to success. Last but not least, would like to thank Rinpoche for initiating such a beautiful position of Pastors to reach out to more needful people

  23. Judy Lam on Jul 23, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    There are so many women who are inspiring figures such as Mother Teresa, Lady Diana, Master Zheng Yan, Aung San Suu Kyi and Oprah Winfrey. I do believe women can do great things. Women has a natural ability to bond with people and a motherly instinct to care for and nurture people. Others skills like hardwork, commitment, passion, knowledge & experience can be acquired regardless whether you are male or female. Therefore, I am convinced that women will make good pastors.

  24. Valentina Suhendra on Jul 23, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    Dear Lama

    Thank you for giving this assignment. Please find my response below.

    Can women be ‘as’ spiritual as men?

    Yes. Women can be as spiritual as men because being spiritual is in the mind not in the physical appearance. Tara has proven this by vowing that she will take woman form to achieve enlightenment.

    Will they be as respected in a spiritual role which is ‘traditionally’ dominated by men? Will women be accepted? Why or why not?

    The term “traditional” in here implies custom. Just because many people follow a certain custom, it does not imply that it is correct. History has proven time and time again that custom can be changed. A good example is foot binding custom in China.

    Yes. Women will be accepted. We are currently living in the world where substantial progresses to recognize women rights have been made.

    If not, how can women become accepted in this? Not applicable. See above.

    Any sources in history of powerful spiritual women? Is it necesary to have women as Pastors and spiritual leaders?

    Several examples of powerful spiritual women in history: Holy Mary – Jesus’s mother, Mother Theresa, Aung San Suu Kyi, Mr. Cheng Yen from Tzu Chi, Machig Labdron, and many others. Information about them can be easily available in the internet.

    CAN WOMEN MAKE GOOD PASTORS? YES

  25. Ong Moh Mei on Jul 23, 2012 at 9:38 pm

    Do women make good pastors? Yes. Can women make good pastors? Yes. Men and women may be biological and physically different. The mind or consciousness is not bound to sex/gender. So men and women equally make good pastors.

  26. Lim Han Nee on Jul 23, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    I agree with Seng Piow. The word ‘pastor’ as in ‘Buddhist pastor’ is defined by the roles and functions of a Buddhist pastor as has been clearly delineated already. We should not dwell on its connotative meaning or the conventionality of using the word.We should not try to define it as used in a Christian context.

    The two lady pastors in Kechara are fine examples of very committed, dedicated and caring pastors, who have performed their roles and functions very well. In a recent bereavement,for instance, where one of our Dharma brothers lost his only daughter of nineteen( who drowned while on a turtle rescue mission), the two pastors rallied around him and his family instantly. One of the pastors was with them all the way, day and night, right until the cremation and burial and afterwards.

    Having said that, I think, that any person can make a good pastor, be they a man or a woman.Not only must they be good as Dharma teachers, they must also at all times fulfill their pledge of serving others in any of the following capacities- as counsellors, nurturers, and giving solace and support in times of need – with an attitude of humility, care and great empathy and compassion.

    Pastors in Kechara have a ‘role model’ in their midst; and this is our Guru. At 3am of the morning of Saturday 21st July, Rinpoche visited the family in bereavement over their daughter and sister who had drowned. He comforted each of them, counselled and advised and put their minds at ease. When he saw the mother of the decease crying inconsolably, he hugged her and cried with her and said(as he always does),”May all your pain and suffering come to me”.

  27. Pastor Yek Yee on Jul 24, 2012 at 12:34 am

    DO WOMEN MAKE GOOD PASTORS??

    Yes, I totally believed that a woman can done a good as a pastor! The role or function of a pastor is help or benefit others. So, to me that is no gender differential. A man or a woman will done a great job while they really do what they are suppose to do.

    Woman more detail, sensitive, soft, easy to approach, skillful, patient and friendly than a man. The qualifies be a good pastor sometime woman will be more powerful than man.

    Who can done a good job depends of the motivation! That is not differentiate between woman or man, only the care, love and compassion you willing to offer…

  28. henry ooi on Jul 24, 2012 at 12:52 am

    I agree with the majority that women can be as spiritual as men. I view spiritually as one who has studied, contemplated and had spiritual experiences that have changed one to be a happy person and not judge one because of their gender. 100 years ago it was almost unheard of that women could be a leader, a politician, an astronaut, an engineer, an architect, and so on. Times have changed and women of today are intellectually smart, passionate, committed and have the experiences in fields that men are excelled in. I have met women with strong mind and I have met men with weak mind. Hence it is not the gender, color or creed of the person but the mind of the person.

    So, it is not a question whether to have women as Buddhist pastors and spiritual leaders or not, it is about that person having the knowledge and experiences, care and kindness and practicing compassion, integrity, passion, and wanting to go all the way to share and teach dharma and to benefit others. After all, a Buddhist pastor or dharma teacher is the same, just the names differ.

    The former presidents of Kechara were women, so is the current president. And Kechara is a spiritual organization.

  29. william on Jul 24, 2012 at 2:59 am

    Why so stuck with the term “pastor”? Does it really matter what name we use and the term pastor is not exclusive to the Christian faith only, just because it is used more widely in that area. In the context of this post, it means lay people who are empowered to teach dharma and help others.

    Coming back to the question of whether female males good pastors? I think they do because women now are as knowledgeable as men and are worldly people. The role of pastors are to teach and help people but there are some people who prefers to open up to a female. So, female pastors will fill this gap in society.

    Women are also just as strong, compassionate and intelligent as all human race. So why discriminate in this modern age.

    The current 2 lady Pastors in Kechara, Pastor Susan and Pastor Yek Yee, has been very good examples of strong women who are compassionate and kind. THey are always there for the members when they need her. They are also available to perform pujas and counseling to members. On that note, I think there should be more pastors (male or female) so that more people could be served.

    • Zla’od on Jul 25, 2012 at 6:53 am

      Can you name another religion other than Christianity (and Kechara) which uses the term “pastor”?

      • Carmen on Aug 3, 2012 at 5:19 am

        I don’t see why using the word ‘pastor’ for a Buddhist disturbs others so much.

        From the Collins dictionary, one of the meanings of a pastor is : “a person who exercises spiritual guidance over a number of people”.

        A pastor is a role, it is a function, like any other roles/functions that one can have. Therefore, since it is a role or a function, it applies across genders, across religion, across creed, race, wealth. Regardless of these defining minor characteristics, the fundamental role remains the same: to be a pastor; a person who gives spiritual guidance to others. Spiritual, can be in relation to any religion, which relates to the wellbeing of the spirit or soul of someone.

        Therefore, the context of pastors or how it is use does not matter and requires no need for debating. How well the role is exerted should be of more importance than in what context it is used in.

  30. Mic on Jul 24, 2012 at 5:13 am

    Whether you like it or not, we are still living in a patriarchal society and discrimination against women still exist. Thus, I have no surprise there are people who still doubt about the capability of women and these people are not just limited to men. Most of the societies are still practising gender inequality without realising it. It is very difficult to unwind the perception, norm and culture of the people. Societies are still suppressing women in order to secure the position and power of men.

    At anytime, women can be as spiritual as men. Women are smart, wise, caring, committed, strong, responsible, etc as any other men. Women sometimes have to keep low profile in order to make their male boss, husband or partners feel comfortable. I have no doubt women will definitely make good pastors. Whether the society can accept that, it will be a different story.

    Whether women will be respected in a spiritual role which is traditionally dominated by men, this will really depend the perception of the society. Whether you like it or not, there will be still a certain degree of discrimination exist. Just imagine, if HH Dalai Lama was a female, how would the buddhists world perceive the female HH Dalai Lama? Will she still gain the equal respect as compare to the current HH Dalai Lama? Imagine the Bishop of Rome, Pope Benedict XVI was a women? Imagine the Muslim Imam was women? Will the world accept them? I personally feel that women will definitely be accepted as a spiritual leader but NOT the highest level. Women like Mother Teresa, Mata Amritanandamayi and Mary Baker Eddy were few of the example of women spiritual leaders, but could they hold the highest position in the religion like HH Dalai Lama and Pope?

    It is necessary to have women to be spiritual leader as they can understand women better, understand better the human’s need, show by example to the women that women are as important as men in spiritual practise , to nurture the women to be more spiritual, and to show the religion itself is not bias that the religion itself does not discriminate women.

    Women can make good pastors.

  31. Zla'od on Jul 24, 2012 at 11:26 am

    The Gelugpa monastic order is male-dominated. If women and men are equally capable of spiritual leadership, then does this mean that the Gelugpa hierarchs are unenlightened?

    But perhaps their good intentions are constrained by the wider sexism of their host societies. In that case, when do you suppose that female Rinpoches will begin to appear in Gelugpa circles?

  32. Leann Lim on Jul 24, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    I think women can be a good pastor, as responsibility of Pastor is to teach and spread the Dharma knowledge, is not affect by the physical form. I was thinking about mother Tara that to correct there wrong views from the mind of certain beings and determination forever be reborn as a female! “Therefore until this world is emptied out, may I be able to serve the aims of beings with none but a woman’s body” by Tara. can see the Tara story here : http://arya-tara.blogspot.com/

    And look at to Mother Teresa – winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979; the vows is to give “Wholehearted and Free service to the poorest of the poor”. And Lady Amma – Free hugs lady that has given over 31 million hugs and blessing to the world. I did not see any doubt of why women cannot as spiritual as man, and gain respect from people. For me if the person is sincerity, great knowledge, love, caring, compassion,think for others, humble, she or he can be a good Buddhist pastor, no matter of the gender and no different each of this.

    Like Kechara 2 female Pastor : Pastor Yek Yee & Pastor Susan, they are great Pastor, through their spiritual practice that always giving their help without day and night, just hope to plant the Dharma seeds in people they meet and hope the suffer will be reduce of the blessing. Thank you Pastor and Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

  33. Milly on Jul 24, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Women can make good Buddhist pastors. Women are born with motherly instincts and have a lot of compassion in them. In difficult situations, mothers persevere in hardships to bring up their children and family. Some big corporations are now being helmed by women. In some countries, women are head of state or ministers. Society has now accepted women holding top positions or other male dominated positions. Hence, if a woman chooses to study the Dharma well and become a pastor, I believe they will be able to benefit many. Just like some women feel more comfortable to consult a female gynaecologist, hence female pastors can reach out to the category of women who feel they are able to relate better with their own gender.

  34. Irene Lim on Jul 24, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    This is what my friend James Brady commented:

    Hi Irene. I tried the link you sent with the same result. here is my view on Women Pastorrs. The breakthrough for women Pastors was started in the Church of England. There was adversity to it, but now part of the church daily life. Why should there not be women pastors. Should there not be equality for all women at all levels of Life. In Buddhisim, you have Nuns, why not as Pastors. They gave there life to there calling In life, and for the belief they share in the Buddha. I agree with Women Pastors in Buddhisim. Whe ever said it was a Gentlemans Clum. With Women Excluded. Namaste. James. <3

    • Irene Lim on Jul 24, 2012 at 5:49 pm

      Yes, women are equally spiritual as men. Women are equally important as men. There is no more or less in their role in gaining spirituality and nurturing spirituality in Buddhism or other religions. In fact they both compliment each other to bring spirituality to greater heights and accomplishment. Both ‘yin and yang” energy are required in this world system to make the entire world go round and to bring goals to accomplishment. Every man are born out of women; Buddhas are born from woman. Hence, there should never be any discrimination of women and this question of whether women make good Buddhist Pastors should never arise.

  35. Han on Jul 24, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    Regardless of gender, woman can be a good Buddhist pastor too.
    In history, woman was rare to be ordained as a Buddhist pastor. In today world, woman can be a spiritual leader as much as man.

    The two wonderful female pastors from Kechara, Pastor Yekyee and Pastor Susan they are equally good as the male pastor.
    They teach dharma, they nurture newbie, perform pujas etc.
    They take up the responsibility and learn up dharma and share with others compassionately, they selflessly choose dharma as to benefit others, regardless of gender, definitely true enough that woman can be a good Buddhist Pastor.

    I like what Rinpoche mentioned,
    “Feminine wisdom contains power, love, growth, and awakening. Worshipping the feminine energy and showing respect to it’s awesome power is revered in the Buddhist tantras taught by Buddha.”

  36. sockwan on Jul 24, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    Gender should not become a limitation for someone who understand and practice Dharma well to teach Dharma with the intention to benefit others.

    It is so true that in our world today, it is not easy to find monks or nuns. Let’s face it, it is not a path that most parents would like their children to pursue. If we only rely on monks/nuns to give Dharma teachings, Dharma would eventually disappear.

    Laypersons who are passionate and practice Dharma well will be able to deliver Dharma easily to other laypersons because their experiences can be easily related to.

  37. Thierry on Jul 24, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    To say that a woman would not make a good pastor is to say that they could not get enlightened and is to contradict the posit that a human being can achieve enlightenment.
    If a woman can get enlightened, then she can make a good pastor.
    Simple, shirt, logical.

  38. Karen C. on Jul 25, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Stereotyping social roles based on gender is not unusual in the society. However the fact that the society now is getting more women-dominated has made gender discrimination invalid. There are so many female leaders in the world, Ang Su Kyi is one of the foremost female leaders who radiates the powerful potent female energy. Her spiritual practice has brought tremendous results in her life.

    I strongly believe that female can be good pastor. Why not? Personally I respect Pastor Yek Yee of Kechara a lot. She is always available 24/7 to help others and she never make any complaints. She dedicates her life to Dharma and benefitting others. She is beautiful in all aspects…

  39. NadiaG on Jul 26, 2012 at 3:27 am

    I find it a little condescending to say the word Pastor is borrowed. What if it was? Is there a point here? We live in an age where English is the language to communicate in globally….and here in Malaysia, where there are four main race and many other indigenous peoples…English is probably the best language to communicate in. The word Pastor is eaily recognized. I doubt when Christianity first arose the word Pastor was the first word on their minds. it might have even been a hebrew word to begin with. Buddhism is 500 years or more older in origin that Christianity…if anyone’s borrowed anything….it’s probably semantics.

  40. Veron Tung on Jul 27, 2012 at 9:11 am

    I would say definitely Yes Yes Yes that women can too make good Buddhist Pastors. Why not? Gender should not be an issue to define whether a person is compassion or tolerate. As a matter of fact, women somehow is compassionate, as it is their nature instinct to nurture others. I do believe that pastors should be from different background, gender, races & languages. It would be easier for them to connect to different people who needs their guidance.
    Our lady Pastors in Kechara has always be a very good model role to all of us. They are compassion, responsible, loving & caring, which is equally as good as male pastors. To me, “pastor” is just a form and labelling, a word that is easy to let people seek for comfort, guidance and help from them. Normal ladies like Aung San Sung Khi and Mother Teresa is humble, sincere, great knowledge, loving, caring, compassion,always thinking for others, they also qualified with the word “pastor”.

    Hence, YES! Definitely Women can make good Buddhist Pastors!

  41. Uncle Eddie on Jul 28, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    “Feminine Wisdom containing power, love, growth and awakening. Worshipping the feminine energy and showing respect to its “Awesome Power” is revered in the Buddhist Tantras taught by Buddha.” As shared by Rinpoche with us in the mentioned-teachings of Lord Buddha, women can and will certainly make make good Buddhist pastors as what what have been disclosed. Thank you Rinpoche for your kind thoughts that “discrimation against women or anyone should come to an end”. Buddhist pastors of all backgrounds and genders can definitely help to bring Dharma to many others, as what they already have been doing and fine too! Many find it easier to listen to women speakers than men in respect of their feminity and gentleness.

  42. jennifer on Jul 28, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    I believe that women can do anything that a man can do. In fact women have a stronger sense of intuition, are less ego orientated and feel more deeply.
    I don’t like labels. Labels are man made ( no disrespect nor pun intended here ). It’s just a name placed upon someone or something , more as a point of reference. So if one is called a pastor,a nun, a monk, a priest , be the person male or female, as long as that person has the knowledge, commitment , compassion and ability to bring Dharma to all, to relief suffering of others , then the label of ‘women pastor’ or ‘male pastor’ is irrelevant.
    Kechara’s Pastor Susan and Pastor Yek Yee are wonderful examples of women pastors performing their duties with so much conviction, i truly respect them, as i respect pastor Chia and all the other members who put in their whole heart and mind in bringing the Dharma to the world.

  43. lewkwanleng on Jul 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Though male and female are different both physically and emotionally, I strongly believe that women and man can both do the Pastor duty well.

    Female Pastor will also be respected if they do their duty well. Just look at Mother Theresa as one of the many examples.

    One of the duties of Pastors are giving counselling, and to me, women are generally better listeners than man. Actually, when it comes to the concept of compassionate, people are easier to relate to female figures because mother are usually kinder and closer to us especially when we are young.

    One of the things I am proud about Buddhism is that it does not discriminate on gender, and having women Pastors is a solid proof that Buddhism does not discriminate.

  44. Carmen on Aug 3, 2012 at 5:33 am

    Yes, I don’t see why woman cannot be as spiritual as men, as it does not require any physical strength (which of course men in general will surpass women in that case) to be spiritual. The spirit and mind of one is independant of any physicalities, thus independant from gender. Like there are good male prime ministers, there are good female prime ministers (otherwise how do they get voted into that role anyways?), like there are good male doctors, there are good female doctors and so on and so forth. Therefore, yes, women can be as spiritual as men.

    I don’t know if they will be as respected in a spiritual role, as people’s mindsets are hard to change. But with any changes, when there are results, people will tend to support and respect, so even if they are not as respected to begin with, it can be and will be earned. Acceptance will be dependent on results and consistency, but initially, I think people will give the benefit of doubt, as in today’s society, gender equality is getting more prevalent.

    Yes I feel it is necessary to have women as Pastors and spiritual leaders because, like the reason there are so many emanations of Buddha/enlightened beings, having women as Pastors may attract a different audience than men Pastors. Therefore, if it reaches people who otherwise might never seek spirituality, why not! Every avenue to spread spirituality should be necessary to make it (and anything else) successful.

  45. sweekeong on Aug 3, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    I feel women do make good pastors. Caring, helpful, discipline, good conduct, perseverance, persistence, optimistic, realistic, and humane, qualities people whould look up to. Women have these qualities too to some degrees or even better than men. Pastorship is about committing more to Dharma as compared to previous duties, doing more, taking the responsibility to help others by many means, continuously, working on your own weaknesses.

    Does this mean anyone can be a pastor? Yes, everyone, women and men, young and old. The qualities of the person make him or her to a be good pastor, people would look up to her for guidance and advice when they are having difficulties, and the person to go to for learning Dharma knowledge.

    Ultimate it is up to the individual to take up the responsibility as lay out in the pastors vows. At the end day no matter what is gender, or race of the teacher the student is the one who would benefit the most is what matters most.

  46. Paris on Aug 7, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    This is amusing. The point of the post, I think is not about the term of “pastor” – that’s just a matter of words / language and I don’t think we should get caught up in that. I think the point of the post is about women in spirituality and whether or not we think that women are just as capable – well, OF COURSE.

    I think there is no denying that physically, women do suffer more than men, and I think that’s probably what it means when they say that men “have more merit” than women. This is probably because it’s just easier for men to move around, it’s safer for them, they’re stronger and they don’t have to suffer the pains of things like childbirth. But that’s just on a physical level. The question I think is whether or not men and women have the same emotional, mental, intellectual and spiritual capacity to be spiritual and gain attainments.

    Logically, of course, men and women are equal in this sense. This is clear just in the way we consider reincarnation. We’re not just born as females over and over and over again in every lifetime. We may be women now, but we may have been men in a previous time, and vice versa. So would that mean that we’re more “capable” in one life than another? Surely not, since the mind itself is genderless and moves across incarnations. You don’t suddenly just become less attained because your gender changes from one lifetime to another.

    Another perspective, and something Rinpoche just mentioned the other day: that women have to suffer more, either physically or in the way that societies are set up and “function”. When we suffer more, we become stronger, gain more attainments – in this way, women have a greater capacity for practice as they have a stronger level of tolerance and endurance. (Having said that of course, there are many, many men who go through an equal amount of suffering. This isn’t specific just to women).

    I think it is also useful to study the story of Tara, and how she championed the way for women the universe over to gain true equality in our spiritual practices. Rinpoche has given an account of this here, in a beautiful story I never tire of hearing (well of course not, it’s all about girl power!) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtYVQH1oKz0

  47. EricLee KHJB on Aug 14, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    对于女人的能力,我从来多没有怀疑过,只是有很多时候,她们会比较情绪化和比较难以拥有持续性。但是,只要她们拥有佛法的加持,能身体力行佛法,我相信不管是任何人,都能够胜任讲法的责任。而且,只要她的动机是为了利益大众,我相信她们也能和任何人一样,把讲法师的责任担当的很好。

  48. likheng on Sep 4, 2012 at 5:14 am

    Based on the principal of reincarnation, i am certain that our mind streams have been male and female thousands if not millions of times. Thus, gender is really not important until defined and confined by society. As an example, in animal kingdom such as that for the lion, the “bread winner” are the lionesses.

    It is mostly out of fear that some individuals impose restraining definitions upon other members of society. Limitations are also introduced as a consequence of the desire to control, manipulate and benefit from others based on the belief that we are unable to practice the act of willful giving.

    As our world continues to degenerate, it is of great importance that we do not get distracted by the petty reasons that causes a separation within our society. Instead, we should focus our intelligence and effort on matters that pull us together because harmony is the key to long term success.

    Thus, I believe women can be great pastors just like men can be because we are much the same and extremely capable of complimenting each other as pastors.

  49. Jessica Yap on Apr 17, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    I think we shouldn’t focus so much on the title here.
    According to dictionary.com , one of the meaning of Pastors are: a person having spiritual care of a number of persons.. So the term Pastor is just a mere label that was used by other religions for years and years.. They could be labeled headmasters or doctors or anything, so long they are helping others.
    To me, so long the Pastor is someone who is able to help and guide us and answer our questions on our spiritual path, that is the most important factor to me. I am not saying that the gender and the title isn’t important but it’s just another label. This is just my opinion.

    Thank you dearest Rinpoche for making it possible for laypersons to be trained up as Pastors.

  50. Vinnie Tan on Nov 28, 2013 at 4:33 am

    Definitely women can be as spiritual as men, or in fact, some maybe even more spiritual then men as for women, once they have a direction in life, they would go all the way to fulfil that goal.

    I do not believe that only men can be better at doing spiritual things, there are nuns out there that are as good as some monks, or even better. It would definitely be good that there are female pastors as well as they too can benefit and help others, just like how Pastor Yek Yee has benefited and helped so many people. She is also a female, and it has proven that as a female, the females too can do magical things to help and benefit others.

  51. jerry_sito on Nov 28, 2013 at 11:30 am

    感恩仁波切的开示与教诲

    佛法最终抵达的是菩提心与空性,那么无论是什么性别,只要精进地修学佛法,并严守戒律,待持修得了完全的菩提心与空性,那么不都一样能证悟成佛吗?

    金刚瑜伽母,绿度母及21度母,同样的以女性的形象来渡化众生,那么无论讲法师是以什么性别,他们都是秉着诸佛菩萨的慈悲心识,无论是什么性别,他们的目的就只是,弘扬佛法及救渡一切有情众生,那不是一样吗?

    感恩尊贵的仁波切您,成立了讲法师制度,并在您慈爱与祝福下,让我们有更多的机会,修学与分享佛法,一切有情众生无论性别还是其他,您都用您的大爱包围着我们,教导我们佛法,让我们迈向证悟

    感恩仁波切,祈愿您长驻在世,常转法轮

  52. Alice Tay on Dec 12, 2013 at 9:42 am

    众生皆有佛性。简单说,众生皆能成佛,只不过这是要看个人的坚持,能耐与修持心。。

    既然众生皆能成佛,那么如果讲法师是女儿身或是男儿身也不是重点了。。。

    般若波罗密心经有提到,舍利子,色不异空,空不异色。色即是空,空即是色,受想行识,亦复如是。
    简单说,女儿身或男儿身只不过是个形体上的差别。我们不需那么执著于不一样的形体,因为到最后也是空。。

    因此,一位授予讲法师 ,他(她)必需有一定的佛法知识和最重要的是由上师詹杜固仁波切所确认的。。。既然已经选择追从上师仁波切的教导,那么仁波切所做的一切也是为了达成目的,利益众生。。。

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Tsem Rinpoche


 

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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

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  • Pastor Jay Jae
    (Monday, Sep 1. 2014 06:20 PM)
    Being passionate for the Dharma and also serving His Eminence Tsem Tulku Rinpoche full time, PastorLoh Seng Piow is one of the eyewitness to many of the incidences which we don’t see when we meet Rinpoche. Pastor Seng Piow on his personal accord has compiled all these stories and made it available in visual comic form for everyone to see. On one hand, this has increased the faith in many on Rinpoche and on the other, this shows how devoted Pastor Seng Piow is in serving H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche.

    See the comics here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-7.html

    Pastor Seng Piow now is a residet pastor in the Tsem Foundation in USA. If you have any problems on your spiritual path, he’s a good person to see:
    Tsem Rinpoche Foundation is located at:
    Unit #5 Soledad Plaza
    20655 Soledad Canyon Road
    Santa Clarita,
    California 91351, USA
    For further information about Tsem Rinpoche Foundation, Inc., please contact foundation@tsemrinpoche.com.
  • bengkooi
    (Monday, Sep 1. 2014 05:19 PM)
    The next Saturday Blog Chat Topics have been announced! Study up and prepare yourself: (1) H.H. Trijang Rinpoche’s biography (http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/his-holiness-kyabje-trijang-dorje-chang.html) and tantra teachings (http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/various-aspects-of-tantra-by-his-holiness-kyabje-trijang-rinpoche.html) See you on Saturday!
  • Pastor Adeline
    (Saturday, Aug 30. 2014 02:05 PM)
    Next Saturday (6 Sept 2014) 11am Malaysia time, we’ll be learning about Trijang Rinpoche, our erudite lineage master! Here’s some read up to prepare yourself http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/his-holiness-kyabje-trijang-dorje-chang.html; http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/various-aspects-of-tantra-by-his-holiness-kyabje-trijang-rinpoche.html. Looking forward to seeing you there!
  • tsemtulku
    (Saturday, Aug 30. 2014 12:38 PM)
    Dear Everyone, I was very happy to observe blog chat. Excellent questions, excellent answers and excellent participation. Joy had good questions prepared. Joy will be in charge of the next ten BLOG CHAT SHARINGS. She will announce and inform people (reminders) on social media. Every week I will give Joy the subject she should research on and come up with the questions and be prepared for the answers too. Next week will be on His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche bio and you can all study up here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=4340 and also his teaching on: Various Aspects of Tantra- http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=4621 So next week Blog Sharing will be on Trijang Rinpoche’s life and his teachings on tantra. This will everyone to learn and understand dharma more. Study up! Tsem Rinpoche
  • tsemtulku
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 02:26 PM)
    Incredible Tsongkapa Retreat In Kechara:

    There are 24 persons who have just started a holy Tsongakapa retreat in Kechara. More and more people are engaging in Tsongkapa retreats, meditations, mantras, prayers and practice as they can feel the practice. Pastor PastorYek Yee kindly updated me on the retreat and Pastor Lanse conducted a Drukchoma (Kalarupa puja) for the success of the retreatants. I sincerely rejoice.
    It is wonderful to find the dharma. Then investigate and learn the dharma. Then adopt the dharma. Then adapt the dharma into our body, speech and mind and that is called practice. With practice we become familiar and it definitely becomes easier. To support our transformation (practice), retreats are necessary to increase merits to back up the transformations. Buddha Tsongkapa retreat is one of the best ways to collect merit, purify karma and help us to connect to our divinity. Help us to expunge old negative thinking and let go of pain and adopt new and wisdom filled ways of observing the happenings around us. A new way to observe that does not cause pain. As Tsongkapa is a Buddha, His practice will confer great blessings.

    Reciting his potent mantra (migtseyma) daily and consistently, making offerings to Tsongkapa and doing His meditations over time is excellent. I am very happy to hear there are 24 persons engaged in a short and blessed Tsongkapa retreat now in Kechara. Excellent news. Thank you for sharing. Tsem Rinpoche…
  • Pastor Adeline
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 02:04 PM)
    I love this poem His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche wrote for his root guru, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche. It never fail to bring tears to my eye. http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/a-poem-to-my-teacher.html
  • Pastor Adeline
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 02:01 PM)
    When we have one or two persons who brave releasing samsara and become ordained and become monks or nuns, then it will inspire others. When the sangha behave according to dharma, it will inspire many other people to take ordination also. Tsem Rinpoche

    Today another Kecharian has shaved the head and preparing for ordination as a full sangha.

    Messages from His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche on blog chat
  • Pastor Adeline
    (Friday, Aug 29. 2014 02:00 PM)
    For SIM CHIN YEE – Thank you for sharing! Please also take part in the contest and win yourself a Manjushri! http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/win-a-manjushri-statue.html
  • SIM CHIN YEE
    (Thursday, Aug 28. 2014 01:21 PM)
    Hi,

    Am really cannot imagine this is still happening in Australia, “Cage Egg System” has already been banned in many countries. I will share this in FB, share it to my friends.I am sure there must be a more systematic way than this “Cage Egg System”.
  • tsemtulku
    (Wednesday, Aug 27. 2014 08:59 PM)
    I get thanks and appreciations very often from people all around the world for our blog here. Majority of the people I do not have the pleasure to know who they are. Yet they write in always. They read and leave comments. We get now between 100,000 to 120,000 views per month now on the blog I am told and it is consistent ever month. I am AMAZED, HUMBLED AND HAPPY. I am glad so many around the world learn and benefit from this blog. I got two messages today. One from Penang and one from Italy thanking me for the blog and how much they learn from this blog and how much they appreciate it. It makes all the hard work worth it. Wonderful. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Pastor Jay Jae
    (Wednesday, Aug 27. 2014 04:38 PM)
    RARE and precious pictures of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Dorje Chang. Without Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, we won’t be blessed with such a mighty Guru such as HE Tsem Rinpoche today. Brace yourselves and be showered with the rain of Kyabje Zong Rinpoche here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52782
  • Pastor Adeline
    (Tuesday, Aug 26. 2014 06:21 PM)
    Dear friends, I just posted this on our LINEAGE lamas and how we should cultivate our attitude toward our lamas for successful practice: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52656 Tsem Rinpoche
    yesterday. http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?nggpu=http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/wp-content/gallery/photos-on-the-go/photo_140825140522_0.jpg (copied from Photo on the Go at http://www.tsemrinpoche.com)
  • tsemtulku
    (Tuesday, Aug 26. 2014 07:54 AM)
    His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche’s biography has been posted here finally. Pastors David, Niral, Jean Ai and Seng Piow worked for long hours into the wee hours of the morning to get it done. I have been wanting to compile one from various sources for the longest time and add the beautiful pictures, but I hadn’t gotten around to it. I asked the four Pastors to do so last night and they were here till 6AM completing it. Then I added the finishing touches and finally finished around 8AM. It’s important to read the biography to understand this great master and why he has affected me and thousands so deeply and the lineage I belong to. To understand a teacher is to understand their guru. To understand a lineage is through the biographies of the great masters of the lineage. It is a blessing to read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52782 Tsem Rinpoche
  • Pastor Niral Patel
    (Tuesday, Aug 26. 2014 07:25 AM)
    Easy and Effective – The practice of Tsongkhapa. Go to the link to read a beautiful prayer invoking the blessings of Lama Tsongkhapa, one of my favorite prayers!
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/tsongkhapa/easy-and-effective.html
  • tsemtulku
    (Monday, Aug 25. 2014 11:36 PM)
    We spent around 5 hours blogging about H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche’s biography. Take a look: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52782)—- For further interesting posts and pictures on Zong Rinpoche, click here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/…/cate…/kyabje-zong-rinpoche

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Archives

  • 2014 (207)
  • 2013 (364)
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CREDITS

Concept: Tsem Rinpoche
Technical: Lew Kwan Leng, Justin Ripley, Yong Swee Keong
Design: Justin Ripley, Cynthia Lee
Content: Tsem Rinpoche, Khong Jean Mei, Justin Ripley, 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 I am writing now

Scroll down and click on "older messages" to view archived chit messages. Use 'prev' and 'next' links to navigate between pages

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.
This is so perfect! Really direct wisdom and to the point. Tsem Rinpoche
yesterday
Interesting deduction. TR
yesterday
When we need to support, we should not remain quiet or indifferent. Tsem Rinpoche 
yesterday
This is so true. It's hard but it applies. Tsem Rinpoche 
yesterday
I get thanks and appreciations very often from people all around the world for my blog (www.tsemrinpoche.com). Majority of the people I do not have the pleasure to know who they are. Yet they write in always. They read and leave comments on the blog also. We get now between 100,000 to 120,000 views per month now on my blog I am told and it is consistent ever month. I am AMAZED, HUMBLED AND HAPPY. I am glad so many around the world learn and benefit from my humble blog. I received two messages today. One from Penang (North Malaysia) and one from Italy thanking me for the blog and how much they learn from my blog and how much they appreciate it. It makes all the hard work worth it. Wonderful. Thank you everyone for the learning and feedback. Humbly, Tsem Rinpoche
5 days ago
We spent around 5 hours blogging about H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche's biography. Take a look: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52782)---- For further interesting posts and pictures on Zong Rinpoche, click here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/.../cate.../kyabje-zong-rinpoche
7 days ago
His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche with his two disciples H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche. Perfect triad of blessings. Tsem Rinpoche 
1 week ago
Dear friends, I just posted this on our LINEAGE lamas and how we should cultivate our attitude toward our lamas for successful practice: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52656 Tsem Rinpoche
1 week ago
Tsem Rinpoche: The most BEAUTIFUL Dharma wallpaper downloads in both English and Chinese language here for FREE: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=7052 and many free high resolution Buddha picture downloads here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52713
1 week ago
Wonderful! Today I went out briefly from my retreat and I found a BEAUTIFUL holy Dalai Lama pendant in a store. Am not going out much these days at all. It's nice to have His Holiness close to my heart. I wore the pendant immediately. When I was a child, people had similar ones and I always wanted one. Many of the Kalmyk people would wear it. Now I have one of my own. I really like it. Tsem Rinpoche.. Myself requesting H.H. Dalai Lama to bestow on me ordination: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=19322
1 week ago
This is important to read, see and contemplate. Tsem Rinpoche 
1 week ago
What is on your altar? Take a look: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52604
1 week ago
My little 4 inch Bigfoot figurine arrived today also. I sure like seeing this fellow around. Makes me feel like he belongs around my environment.
1 week ago
A beautiful Lord Manjushri arrived and He is in standing form. Absolutely beautiful. only around 8 inches in height and very graceful. I really treasure all forms of Manjushri and He is gracing my working table where I can see him very clearly. I offer incense to Him throughout the day as I do my work. I like to have incense and offerings throughout the day as much as possible. In fact 24 hours a day.
1 week ago
Read this book by John Blofeld over 30 years ago. Now getting another copy of it to re-read. Tsem Rinpoche
1 week ago
An EXCITING contest going on now! It starts today August 21, 2014-September 4, 2014. Anyone from anywhere around the world may join in!!! You have a chance to win a fabulous Manjushri statue and some wonderful great books. Take a look: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52496
1 week ago
The Shwedagon Great stupa in Myanmar, it holds the hairs of Buddha Shakyamuni. Very holy and worthy of a visit. Tsem Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
Great words of wisdom from Bruce Lee. Must read. Tsem Rinpoche 
2 weeks ago
This is corn that is grown on our Kechara Forest Retreat land in Malaysia,. Fantastic!!!!! Julia said it's very juicy and sweet! Tsem Rinpoche 
2 weeks ago
Locked up her whole life. Never sees sunshine, grass, dirt, or the sky. She is forced to lay eggs constantly and daily. She does so until she's dead, then they send her to be eaten. She has no feathers and can barely stand due to no space and sunlight. She is locked in this tiny space always.
2 weeks ago
Wonderful plants to have in the room. 
2 weeks ago
Amazing Rescue: Last week in Goalpara, India, train passengers spotted this baby elephant struggling in a muddy ditch and had the conductor stop the train, so they could keep the elephant company and feed it local vegetation until a rescue team arrived!-from FB
2 weeks ago
Beautiful outdoor large Lord Buddha in Bhutan.
3 weeks ago
The discovery of this giant Sonoran Desert Toad yesterday outside the Chiricahua Desert Museum the locals are sure this toad is responsible for the loss of their pets This toad weighed in at 57 pounds, that was after it dispensed about 2 gallons of urine during its capture. the largest native toad in North American does not typically get any larger than about 1.5 pounds length of 7.5 inches this is a new world record. -from FB
3 weeks ago
Kalarupa thangka sent to me by Pastor JJ. Thank you so much.
3 weeks ago
This is wonderful. Full of thought and deep. Please read and share. Tsem Rinpoche 
3 weeks ago
This is one of my MOST favorite science fiction movies of all time. It's a little B-rated, but I find it super cool still. LOL. Do watch and leave a comment and let me know what you think: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=34750
4 weeks ago
His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche was said to be a fully attained great lama. He was one of the greatest teachers of his time. He has achieved one-ness with his Yidam Heruka Chakrasamvara. There was many indications of this. Tsem Rinpoche 
4 weeks ago
My bigfoot area in my room with books and statues..
1 month ago
Great Buddha Tsongkapa.
1 month ago
There are more Buddhist Priests, Ministers and Pastors now. This is a wonderful trend. Do see what a great job Rev Christina Yanko is doing in Canada: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=52129
1 month ago
If everyone can realize this would eliminate so many problems.
1 month ago
This is one of the best Avalokitesvara thangkas I have ever seen. I rarely see an Avalokitesvara that draws me or I really like. I am very particular about thangka paintings. But this one is really done by a super skilled artist. The eyes are perfect and the gaze is the correct angle of calm/contemplativeness. The lips, nose and proportions are stunning. The coloring and feel is regality and serenity with great compassion. He feels alive. I would love to get a copy of this very much. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Look at this massive thangka of the Lord of Wisdom Manjushri in Tibet. The bigger the thangka it is believed, the more blessed the area will be. See all the people congregated around it to pay homage and make offerings. Amazing. May you all be blessed by this too and be connected to Manjushri. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
There is a devil there is no doubt, but is he trying to get into us or trying to get out? ~Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
These fresh tomatoes just plucked from our garden here in our USA Ladrang. Tomatoes are some of my favorite foods. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
We had some very special guests come to volunteer at Kechara? Guess who they were? And they turned out to be very humble in their works that night. Please see the love and care: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=51852
2 months ago
This is so true. When teach dharma to some and ask them to change or explain why, they reject and become unhappy and speak ill. 
2 months ago
If my endurance of so much suffering these past years have benefitted you and took some away from you, then it was not in vain and I am content and I would take more.~Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
A sketch by a eye witness in California-1987
2 months ago
Existing is not true existence but mere labelling because the causes removed, we are empty.~Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
People from different parts of the world who have no prior obvious connections can connect to do dharma together. This is wonderful because what we did in the past together can manifest in the present again to continue where we left off. Tsem Rinpoche 
2 months ago
ELEPHANT WEEPS AFTER RESCUE: A 50-year-old elephant that had spent much of his life shackled in chains, wept when he was finally freed from captivity. "Raju" had tears streaming down his face, as wildlife rescuers released him. SHARE this amazing story. -Details of Raju's rescue: http://kiro.tv/AmazingElephantStory
2 months ago
This is profound and the secrets to our success or failure. Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
Are you the sign of the pig? Do you want to know more about yourself? It would be interesting: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=23608
2 months ago
Vegetables harvested from our garden in our USA residence today...nice. TR
2 months ago
See who are in these nice pictures and how they are connected to me please....I just posted the Gratitude series #2...do take a look: See: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=51490
2 months ago
Powerful!!
2 months ago
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

Videos On The Go

Please click on the images to watch video
  • Rescuing dog in LA river
    Rescuing dog in LA river
    3 days ago
  • This is a very inspiring video by Jim Carrey you must see
    This is a very inspiring video by Jim Carrey you must see
    2 weeks ago
  • Dalai Lama watching TV
    Dalai Lama watching TV
    2 weeks ago
  • Dog with a heart of Gold
    Dog with a heart of Gold
    Description
    3 weeks ago
  • 14th Dalai Lama with Mrs.Indira Gandhi , Delhi INDIA 1966
    14th Dalai Lama with Mrs.Indira Gandhi , Delhi INDIA 1966
    3 months ago
  • The Girl Who Couldn't Cry - Water is Life
    The Girl Who Couldn't Cry - Water is Life
    It's really hard to educate a generation of people born in conditions where they take things for granted. A simple slogan campaign that says, "Save water, It's precious" isn't sticky enough to make inroads. That's exactly where this video steps in: to make people realize how precious water actually is. A brilliant video that follows the heartbreaking story of a young girl that cannot cry. Sounds like fiction? Sadly, it is not.
    4 months ago
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    Dear everyone, All sentient beings deserve to live, be happy and not hurt, including animals. We should never hurt them or eat them. Look how much this chicken welcomes a hug and love. Observe carefully. Don't eat beings who can feel pain because the karma comes back. Tsem Rinpoche
    4 months ago
  • The appreciation shown here is so deep and touching.
    The appreciation shown here is so deep and touching.
    Dear friends, See this incredible video. This chimp was found in captivity for many years. Dr Jane Goodall released him into the wild. Look how he comes back to thank her with deep apprecition. It's amazing. Animals have such strong feelings of pain and happiness just like us. We should never hurt them and share with others to not hurt them. Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
    4 months ago
  • Aki drinking some water in the aviary
    Aki drinking some water in the aviary
    Aki is a rescued bird, he now lives in Kechara Forest Retreat Aviary
    6 months ago
  • Jamyang enjoying some fresh corn
    Jamyang enjoying some fresh corn
    Jamyang is one of our rescue birds that live in Kechara Forest Retreat Aviary
    6 months ago
  • The Cute Mumus Practising Dog Orchestra at Kechara Forest Retreat
    The Cute Mumus Practising Dog Orchestra at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Today the Mumus (dogs) decided to do a dog orchestra rehearsal together with the Kechara Forest Retreat (KFR) dogs.
    6 months ago
  • Incredible footage you must see!
    Incredible footage you must see!
    Description
    7 months ago
  • -
    -
    Gongkar is our new bird for Kechara Forest Retreat's aviary. Gongkar never had friends and the original owner could not bring him to his destination. Now he is with us and assimilating in his cage within the aviary for a few weeks then released into aviary. Look at how much he wants attention from the other birds. Cute. Tsem Rinpoche
    10 months ago
  • Mumu, Oser and Dharma running and having a good time. I love seeing them playing. Tsem Rinpoche
    Mumu, Oser and Dharma running and having a good time. I love seeing them playing. Tsem Rinpoche
    10 months ago
  • Mumus running at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Mumus running at Kechara Forest Retreat
    11 months ago
  • Kechara Forest Retreat panorama, September 2013
    Kechara Forest Retreat panorama, September 2013
    12 months ago
  • -
    -
    Dechog our cockatoo at Kechara Forest Retreat grabbing long beans which he loves. Nice bird. We love him. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
  • The mumus having outdoor evening stroll!!!
    The mumus having outdoor evening stroll!!!
    1 years ago
  • -
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    17 May 2013, heavy rain at Kechara Forest Retreat from 7am-8am (1 hour). Water overflowed the existing drain and also opened up a much wider new "route" for itself.
    1 years ago
  • Must see video from Rajendra on our disciplined dogs
    Must see video from Rajendra on our disciplined dogs
    1 years ago
  • -
    -
    Dato' Ruby won the Bella Awards!
    1 years ago
  • -
    -
    This is a wonderful video for Moh Mei because she is sleeping in the KECHARA FOREST RETREAT CONTAINERS all alone...ehehehhehe...this is a new friend to keep her company....tsem rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Answer to Jo
    2 yearss ago
  • -
    -
    The 2 tortoises in Tsem Ladrang, Kadro and Menlha are enjoying their fresh veggie meal.
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Organic vegetables at Kechara Forest Retreat
    2 yearss ago
  • -
    -
    This is Dorje our friendly fish that lives with us. He captured my attention the first time because he was exceptionally friendly. TR
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Mumus go bye bye!!!
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    SP's mom said that she is from Penang. This is her first trip to bodhgaya, and she truly finds bodhgaya is very holy and spiritual.
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Very touching video...Buddha said it was very important to visit the four holy places associated with Him before our deaths. Remembering this, I had instructed Paul to take this senior group to Bodhgaya and make sure they are able to plant imprints. When this life of 'fun', money, parties and socials are over, we cannot leave empty handed. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Our two rescued tortoises who live at Tsem Ladrang happily and will be transferred to Kechara Forest Retreat where they will have much more space to roam and run. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago

ASK ME A QUESTION

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Related Links To Myself

My Blog in Chinese:
zhandugu.blog.163.com
My website:
www.tsemtulku.com
My organisation's website:
www.kechara.com





CHAT PICTURES

Registration and briefing prior to 3D2N Lama Tsongkhapa retreat from 29th Aug to 31 Aug 2014 at Kechara Forest Retreat, Bentong, Malaysia_PB
2 hours ago
Anyone can be a leader. It’s not a big deal. LEADERS are people who just get things done on time, correctly and without being pushed. (Sourced from 108 ways to grab my APPLES from Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, conceptualised by Sharon Saw)_PB
2 hours ago
Complaining is another way of saying to others, “YOU SOLVE THE PROBLEM!” (Sourced from 108 ways to grab my APPLES from Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, conceptualised by Sharon Saw)_PB
2 hours ago
Imprint in Tibetan is bak-cha; means something that is planted in our consciousness, that is stored in our consciousness ~ H.E.Tsem Rinpoche _Hee TS
4 hours ago
The more I know about people ,the better I like my dogs.~Mark Twan_Hee TS
5 hours ago
One who is given to solitude knows things as they really are ~Buddha _Hee TS
5 hours ago
After 3 days 2 nights Lama Tsongkhapa Retreat, the participants still so excited and happy. Selfie first before leave KFR. Pastor Yek Yee
20 hours ago
Medic team nursing a client outside of KSK. Justin Cheah@KSK
22 hours ago
~Twenty-Seven Verses On Mind Training~ (Composed by Lama Je Tsongkhapa ~1357-1419 ) http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/tsongkhapa-prayers.html #19 Transform the intense activity of daily life into the harmonious expression and teaching of truth by affectionately reminding and being reminded that the bitter dark fruits of negating others are poisonous, to be most carefully avoided, while the sweet bright fruits of affirming others are life-giving, to be thoroughly enjoyed. Authentic delight exists only in serving others, and suffering springs only from harming others or insensitively ignoring the needs of living beings, all of whom are as intimately related to us as our own precious mother and father. From: June Tang (Khjb)
22 hours ago
~Twenty-Seven Verses On Mind Training~ (Composed by Lama Je Tsongkhapa ~1357-1419 ) http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/tsongkhapa-prayers.html #18 Never offering the slightest encouragement to hostility, never hesitating to embrace the concerns of others, pay complete attention to every altruistic impulse that arises in the stream of pure awareness. Contemplate the teaching of selfless compassion, calming and clarifying the turbulent flood of egocentric mind with the sweetest meditation. Renounce the meaninglessness of selfish life. Become devoted to the true meaning of existence: the spontaneous, active compassion for all living beings. If one does not refute self-centered motivation, the subtle tendencies of the mind can never be free from the gross or subtle disposition to negation. From: June Tang (Khjb)
22 hours ago
经常为你心爱的宠物持诵药师佛祈愿文、心经、仪轨或心咒,给它们加持. ~詹杜固仁波切 http://weibo.cn/comment/kAc3HE?uid=1837031263&rl=0#cmtfrm From: June Tang (Khjb)
23 hours ago
你到底是谁?内心深处,你是一个善良、有爱心的好人。你要做的仅是立即把这些特质化现出来! ~ 詹杜固仁波切 http://weibo.cn/comment/kAcaG2?uid=1837031263&rl=0#cmtfrm From: June Tang (Khjb)
23 hours ago
绝不企图伤害任何人,即便对方是再容易欺负不过的对象。业力总让你自食其果。 ~詹杜固仁波切 http://weibo.cn/comment/kAbGaL?uid=1837031263&rl=0#cmtfrm From: June Tang (Khjb)
23 hours ago
Rice blessing at The Tara Walk and Medicine Buddha Hill on 31 Aug 2014 after the 3D2N Lama Tsongkhapa retreat at KFR_PB
yesterday
Lama Tsongkhapa retreat participants sharing their experience, feeling or thought with Rinpoche after the retreat_PB
yesterday

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