Trisong Detsen, the Great Dharma King of Tibet

Apr 24, 2019 | Views: 1,248
Trisong Detsen, the Tibetan king who firmly established Buddhism in Tibet. Image credit: himalayanart.org

Trisong Detsen, the Tibetan king who firmly established Buddhism in Tibet. Image credit: himalayanart.org. Click on image to enlarge.

King Trisong Detsen, the 38th Yarlung King, ruled over Tibet from 754 CE to 799 CE.1 Known as the second of Tibet’s Three Dharma Kings, he was the monarch responsible for the official adoption of Buddhism as the state religion of Tibet and for putting it under royal patronage.

In a dissertation on the life of Padmasambhava, it is written that the Bodhisattva Manjushri, wishing to spread the Dharma and to ensure its proliferation, decided to take rebirth as a king of Tibet. This incarnation was Trisong Detsen, the second Dharma King.

King Trisong Detsen founded Samye Monastery where the ordination of the first seven Tibetans as Buddhist monks took place, and sponsored the translation of numerous Buddhist texts. It was during his reign that many great teachers from India such as Shantarakshita and Padmasambhava, to name but a few, brought their teachings and lineages to Tibet.

 

The Dharma Kings of Tibet

The first Dharma King was Songtsen Gampo, the 33rd King of the Dynasty of Yarlung, who ruled from around 605 CE to 650 CE.2 He was credited with unifying several small Tibetan kingdoms under his leadership. Through the influence of his Nepali and Chinese wives who were both devout Buddhists, he became an enthusiastic promoter of the Dharma in the Land of Snows.

The first Dharma King was Songtsen Gampo. Image credit: wikivividly.com

The first Dharma King was Songtsen Gampo. Image credit: wikivividly.com. Click on image to enlarge.

King Songtsen Gampo also introduced a writing system for the Tibetan language modelled on the Sanskrit script. He sent his minister, the scholar Thonmi Sambhota along with sixteen other individuals to India to study the various Indian writing systems. When Thonmi Sambhota returned to Tibet, he created a new script and a grammatical system for the Tibetan language. Thonmi Sambhota also collected various important scriptural texts for translation. It is said that Buddhist texts were first translated into Tibetan during the reign of Songtsen Gampo.

The third great Dharma King was Tri Ralpachen, the 41st ruler of the Yarlung Dynasty, who reigned between 815 CE and 838 CE.3 This period was considered the golden age of the Tibetan Empire, which spread its borders to parts of China, India, Nepal and almost the entire area of East Turkestan, also known as Xinjiang. Tri Ralpachen promoted Buddhism throughout Tibet and commissioned further translations of Buddhist texts into the Tibetan language.

Notes 1, 2, and 3: These are approximate dates of the reigns of the three Dharma Kings. Source: Robert E. Buswell Jr. and Donald S. Lopez Jr., The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2014

 

Illustrious Genealogy

The young Trisong Detsen. Image credit: http://tourtraveltibet.com

The young Trisong Detsen. Image credit: tourtraveltibet.com. Click on image to enlarge.

According to one source, Trisong Detsen was born in 742 CE to Emperor Me-Agtsom and Empress Chin Ch’eng Kun Chu. He was a descendant of Songtsen Gampo and a long line of rulers renowned for their spirituality. His mother was a Han Chinese princess from Tang China given in marriage to Emperor Me-Agtsom in an effort to ease tensions between Tibet and China. The Empress was a devout Buddhist who influenced the Emperor’s and her young son’s interest in Han Chinese Buddhism.

Fuelled by his young son’s early interest in Buddhism, Emperor Me-Agtsom sent a delegation to China to learn more about the religion. In 755 CE when Trisong Detsen was just thirteen, Emperor Me-Agtsom was assassinated by ministers of a conservative xenophobic Bön faction at the Tibetan court. They opposed the Emperor’s interest in Buddhism and his continuing conciliatory attitude towards China. This was the same year as the start of the An Lushan Rebellion in China (755–763 CE), which temporarily overthrew the Tang Dynasty.

It was not until 754 CE that Trisong Detsen became old enough to become the 38th king of the Yarlung Dynasty. During the interim period before he ascended the throne, Ba Sangshi, the leader of the delegation sent to China by his father had returned with Buddhist texts which remained hidden until Trisong Detsen became king. With encouragement from Ba Sangshi, the Crown Prince studied these hidden texts and became a devout Buddhist.

 

Marriages and Descendants

Click for high-resolution image

A thangka of Standing Yeshe Tsogyal, Guru Padmasambhava, Wangze (Pema Shugden), Za Rahula and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

King Trisong Detsen had several wives, some of whom were the result of political alliances with bordering countries. The wives and consorts of Trisong Detsen include:

  • Lhamo Tsen from the Chim clan
  • Jangchub Dron from the Dro clan
  • Gyalmo Tsun from the Phoyong family
  • Magyal Tsokarma from the Tsepong clan
  • Yeshe Tsogyal from the Kharchen family

Yeshe Tsogyal, one of the king’s consorts was offered to Padmasambhava by Trisong Detsen as a mandala offering during an empowerment. She became the chief disciple and consort of Padmasambhava, and her phenomenal memory enabled her to receive the complete set of his teachings. She eventually achieved enlightenment through her practice and became a great practitioner in her own right.

There are differing accounts from various sources regarding the number of sons that Trisong Detsen had. Most sources indicate that he had four sons:

  • Mutri Tsenpo
  • Mune Tsenpo
  • Muruk Tsenpo
  • Mutik Tsenpo (who became known as Tride Songtsen)
Princess Pema Sal. Image credit: rigpawiki.org

Princess Pema Sal. Image credit: rigpawiki.org. Click on image to enlarge.

Trisong Detsen also had one daughter, Princess Pema Sal, who died at the age of eight but was brought back to life by Padmasambhava and entrusted with the complete Khandro Nyingtik cycle by the master. She was later reborn as the tertön Pema Ledrel Tsal, who revealed the teachings as a treasure or terma.

Trisong Detsen retired from public life in 797 CE and went to live in Zungkar. Some sources say that he died in Zungkar the following year although the cause of death is not known. Another source, the Kathang Shetrag reported that Trisong Detsen was killed by a stray arrow shot by spectators when he was participating in a horse racing event. He was succeeded by his son, Mune Tsenpo.

 

Military Accomplishments

Conquests, Alliances and Their Influence on the Development of Buddhism

Historically, Tibet and China have always had a political relationship marked by conflict and tension along their shared borders, frequently resulting in war despite the presence of Buddhism in the cultural affairs of the two nations. Trisong Detsen proved his military prowess by winning several battles against Tang China and against the Arabs in the west. It was during his reign that Tibet’s military strength reached its peak, capturing large areas of China and regions to the west.

Despite the signing of Sino-Tibetan peace treaties, fighting between the Tibetans and the Chinese continued. In 781 CE, the Tibetan forces captured Dunhuang at the eastern end of the Tarim Basin. This large cave monastery complex became a centre for the translation of Buddhist texts from Chinese into Tibetan. The Peace Treaty of Qingshui in 783 CE, the year of Shantarakshita’s death, established the Sino-Tibetan boundary in Amdo, present-day Qinghai, giving Tibet control of the Kokonor regions. However, peace between the two empires lasted only three years, and war broke out again in this region in 786 CE, six years before the Samye debate.

A pictures scene of Amdo, present-day Qinghai. Image credit: thelandofsnows.com

Picturesque Amdo in present-day Qinghai. Image credit: thelandofsnows.com

Tibet’s military strength was unmatched during Trisong Detsen’s reign and her expansion into these territories, where Buddhism had long been established, strengthened her contact with the Indian form of Buddhism while forcing China to consider establishing diplomatic ties with Tibet. Buddhism entered into Sino-Tibetan relations during the reign of Trisong Detsen when he decreed Buddhism as the Tibetan state religion. This initiated the start of cultural ties which allowed the flow of Buddhist texts and teachers from China into Tibet.

The Sino-Tibetan conflicts were not restricted to the Amdo borders and the Silk Route regions. Tibet had entered into various military alliances under Trisong Detsen, especially with King Kolofeng, the son of King Pilaoko of Siam (Thailand). King Pilaoko (r. 728–750 CE) was the ruler of Nanzhao, the proto-Thai kingdom in Yunnan that he had established by uniting various Bai states in 730 CE. Pilaoko had accepted Tang Chinese overrule in 735 CE and had attacked nearby Tibetan areas in 745 CE. His son and successor, King Kolofeng (r. 750–779 CE), however, rebelled against China and allied with Tibet in 750 CE. In 778 CE, Tibet and Nanzhao fought a battle against the Chinese in Sichuan. This alliance held until 786 CE, when the next Nanzhao ruler, King Imoshun (r. 779–808 CE) allied his kingdom once more with China, and war broke out again between China and Tibet. Thus, China and Tibet fought each other on two fronts at this time. The Kingdom of Nanzhao lasted until 902 CE.

 

Western Alliances

The middle-aged Trisong Detsen flanked by Padmasambhava and Shantarakshita. Image credit: http://tourtraveltibet.com

The middle-aged Trisong Detsen flanked by Padmasambhava and Shantarakshita. Image credit: tourtraveltibet.com. Click on image to enlarge.

In order to secure Tibet’s western borders, Trisong Detsen forged alliances with Arab and Persian states. He was able to rely on their support in conflicts with China and this allowed him to focus on conquering large sections of western China as a result.

Trisong Detsen’s military successes were a key factor in his overcoming the opposition from the pro-Bön faction in his court. In addition, with the help of the powerful tantric master Padmasambhava who had arrived in Tibet, the local deities opposed to the introduction of Buddhism were subdued, and the king was able to invite Shantarakshita once more to Tibet. The return of Shantarakshita to Tibet around 761 CE marked the beginning of an era when Buddhism spread and flourished, penetrating all aspects of life in the Land of Snows.

 

Becoming the Second Dharma King

Buddhism had started to decline in the early 7th century after its introduction by the first Dharma King, Songtsen Gampo. When Trisong Detsen came into power in 754 CE, he proclaimed himself a Buddhist and granted royal patronage to the religion. This effectively formalised Buddhism as the official religion in Tibet. Trisong Detsen proceeded to curb the growing anti-Buddhist movement by removing xenophobic ministers who preferred the Bön religion during and after his father’s assassination. The fact that the king himself had adopted the new faith had tremendous impact on the religious, cultural and political future of the country.

Mural in Samye Monastery showing Trisong Detsen receiving Guru Rinpoche. Image credit: itibettravel.com

Mural in Samye Monastery showing Trisong Detsen receiving Guru Rinpoche. Image credit: itibettravel.com. Click on image to enlarge.

During his reign, Trisong Detsen presided over the administration of the Sangha. He also regulated the Tibetan Buddhist Canon by laying down rules regarding the translation of scriptural texts from a foreign language into Tibetan as well as the types of works that could be translated. It was also during his reign that the first Buddhist monastery was built in Tibet and the Indian Buddhist tradition became the country’s orthodox faith.

 

The King meets Shantarakshita

When King Trisong Detsen was twenty, he aspired to spread the Dharma and to build a temple that would become the seat for the teaching of the Buddha’s doctrine and the site for the growth and training of Tibetan Sangha. Trisong Detsen sent a delegation to China that returned with a thousand classic Buddhist scriptures. However, the xenophobia that existed at the time in the royal court forced Trisong Detsen to send more envoys to Nepal and India to learn Buddhism and to obtain more Buddhist texts. It was in Nepal that one of his envoys first heard of and met Shantarakshita, a famous Indian pandit and master of Buddhist scriptures. On his recommendation, Trisong Detsen decided to invite Shantarakshita to teach in Tibet.

Shantarakshita

Shantarakshita and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

In 761 CE, Trisong Detsen sent his minister Selnang to Nepal and to India to request for assistance and to invite the renowned scholar Shantarakshita, who was also the abbot of Nalanda Monastic University, the most prestigious Buddhist centre of learning in northern India. The scholar-monk was famous for his work, the Madhyamakalamkara or Ornament of the Middle Way, which is among the most important Mahayana Buddhist philosophical treatises to emerge on the Indian subcontinent. This text had a major impact on Tibetan Buddhist philosophy and is considered to be the quintessential exposition or root text of the school of Buddhist philosophical thought known as Yogachara-Svatantrika-Madhyamaka.

Shantarakshita played an important role in the diffusion of Buddhism in Tibet. He became the Abbot of Samye Monastery and ordained the first seven Tibetan monks. During the remaining years of his life in Tibet, Shantarakshita gave many teachings and transmissions. He was referred to by Tibetans as the “Bodhisattva Abbot.”

 

Padmasambhava Comes to the Rescue

A thangka of Standing Guru Rinpoche along with Vajrakilaya, Samantabhadra, Rahula, Ekajati, Dorje Legpa and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

With the help of Shantarakshita, King Trisong Detsen began the construction of Tibet’s first Buddhist monastery, Samye, built specifically for training and ordaining Tibetan monks, and to translate Buddhist texts primarily from India and China. It is important to note that for several generations after the death of the first Dharma King, Songtsen Gampo, Tibet had modest chapels but no monasteries or resident monks. Thus, the building of this monastery was of considerable significance.

The site of the monastery was chosen and consecrated by Shantarakshita. The initial construction of the temple was dogged by a series of natural disasters created by hostile supernatural forces native to Tibet. In addition, the king had to deal with opposition from the Bön priests and their allies – the pro-Bön ministers within his own court who were against the introduction of Buddhism. The Indian master’s arrival and his teaching of the Dharma in Tibet apparently displeased the local Bön spirits, resulting in storms, floods and a pestilence that swept the country.

According to some sources, Shantarakshita’s visit coincided with a smallpox epidemic that broke out around that time. As a result, he had to leave Tibet for Nepal, but before he left, Shantarakshita advised the King to invite the Tantric master, Padmasambhava to Tibet to subdue the Bön spirits, in addition to spreading Buddhism. On his arrival, Padmasambhava successfully subdued the local Bön demons and placed them in the service of the Dharma.

A thangka featuring Guru Rinpoche, Lama Tsongkhapa, Dorje Dragden and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

It was after the removal of these obstacles that King Trisong Detsen was finally able to build the monastery. Shantarakshita, who designed the monastery, was inspired by the then famous Indian Monastery of Odantapuri, in northern India. The temple complex was laid out in the form of a mandala.

The construction of the monastery was completed in five years. Trisong Detsen filled Samye with representations of enlightened body, speech and mind, and it soon became the hub of Dharma activity in Tibet. It was during this period at Samye Monastery that Trisong Detsen, together with Padmasambhava’s twenty five main disciples, received the empowerments of The Eight Sadhana Teachings directly from Padmasambhava. The king’s yidam was Heruka and he gained many siddhis through this practice. He also received Dzogchen transmissions from Padmasambhava, Vimalamitra and Vairochana and became one of their primary disciples.

Samye Monastery. Image credit: wikipedia.org

Samye Monastery. Image credit: wikipedia.org

 

The Historical Council of Lhasa Debate

Samye Monastery was also the site where the famous “Samye Debate” took place around 792 CE. This event, also referred to as the “Council of Lhasa,” and the “Council of Samye,” was a key moment in the history of Tibetan Buddhism. The debate was held between the Chinese Buddhist monk called Mo-ho-yen (Mahayana) or Hvashang and the Indian Buddhist master Kamalashila.

At the time, Buddhism in Tibet came from two main regions, China and India. Trisong Detsen realised that the two schools of Buddhism had conflicting understanding and interpretations of Buddhist doctrines and practices. The Chinese Chan School taught instant enlightenment through stopping all thought and activity, while the Indian school argued that a gradual path of study, analysis, and ethical discipline would lead to enlightenment.

Prior to his death in 788 CE, Shantarakshita had foretold that such a conflict would arise between the Chinese and Indian disciplines. He had advised Trisong Detsen to hold a debate to resolve the matter by requesting his disciple, Kamalashila to represent the Indian position against Mo-ho-yen, the Chinese Chan master.

This historic series of debates lasting two years finally determined which school of Buddhism would prevail in Tibet. As Shantarakshita predicted, the judges ruled in favour of the Indian view. Mo-ho-yen and all teachings related to the Chinese Chan sect were banished from Tibet and the fledgling Tibetan Buddhist movement became solely influenced by the Indian Buddhist path.

The great Indian scholar and Vajrayana master Kamalashila. Image credit: Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia

The great Indian scholar and Vajrayana master Kamalashila. Image credit: Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia. Click on image to enlarge.

This was a period of intense translation and teaching of the Dharma, during which King Trisong Detsen received every single transmission that these and other masters bestowed, becoming a primary custodian of the teachings. With the assistance of Padmasambhava, the Abbot Shantarakshita, and together with the great translators Vairochana and Vimalamitra and many other scholars and translators, Trisong Detsen was able to fulfil his aspiration of bringing the complete Buddhist teachings to Tibet.

Perhaps one of the greatest legacies of King Trisong Detsen was the preservation of the purity of the Buddhist lineages, ensuring the direct transmission of teachings from master to disciple in an unbroken line of succession spanning centuries. It is partly due to his pure motivation of establishing the Dharma in Tibet, that for more than a thousand years, countless people have benefitted and gained attainments through the study, contemplation and practice of the teachings. This lasting legacy of his benevolence and patronage continues right up to the present day, both within Tibet and extending to the furthest corners of the world.

 

VIDEO: King Trisong Detsen Biopic

The dance depicted in this video commemorates the historic event in Tibet when Dharma King Trisong Detsen invited the Abbot Shantarakshita and Acharya Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche) from India to Tibet to help spread Buddhism there. They are referred to as the Sun, Moon and Star in the lyrics. The dance is part of the King Trisong Detsen biopic, composed by the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts in Dharamsala, India.

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Trisong-video4.mp4

 

Places of Interest: Samye Monastery

Samye Monastery was first built around 762-775 CE and the original structure has been destroyed and reconstructed a number of times since. The monastery is located at the foot of Mount Haibu Rishen, north of the Yarlung Tsangpo River, three hours’ drive south-east of Lhasa in the beautiful Chongye Valley. It is open all year round to visitors for a fee. It can be visited as a day trip by taking a regular bus from Lhasa. Many Tibetan monks still study here and receive ordination.

A complete view of the monastery illustrating the mandala. Image credit: himalayan-dreams.com

A complete view of the monastery illustrating the mandala-inspired layout. Image credit: himalayan-dreams.com

The monastery was built in the 8th century by King Trisong Detsen, in consultation with the scholar-monk, Shantarakshita and with the aid of the Indian sage, Padmasambhava. The temple was destroyed during the civil war in the 11th century, by fire in the 11th and 17th centuries, and by earthquakes in the 18th century.

The grounds are laid out in a mandala pattern and the main building is said to be inspired by the architecture of Odantapuri, a great Indian Buddhist university that has since been destroyed. According to some sources, the appearance of its Buddha statues is influenced by the Tibetan style to make it more appealing to locals.

One of the interesting feature of the monastery that itis encircled by a wall which is considered to be the representation of Mount Cakravada which means that the monastery is protected by a symbolic iron fence. Image credit: tibettravel.org

One of the interesting features of the monastery is that it is encircled by a wall which is considered to be the representation of Mount Cakravada. This indicates that the monastery is protected by a symbolic iron fence. Image credit: tibettravel.org

The Cham Dance festival held every year at Samye Monastery is one of the most important festivals in the Tibetan calendar. The Cham dances are performed by the monks for the local lay people and consist of a variety of different performances, all of which have one similar strand running through them – the use of colourful and extravagant costumes and huge colourful masks. The masks are meant to drive fear into the demons of the Plateau, and it is believed that the older the mask, the more powerful its effect on the demons.

 

VIDEO: Samye Monastery, Tibet

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Trisong-video2.mp4

 

VIDEO: Cham Dance at Samye Monastery

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Trisong-video1.mp4

 

VIDEO: The Brahmaputra and Samye Monastery (Tsetang, Tibet, China)

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Trisong-video3.mp4

 

Legacy

An older Trisong Detsen. Image credit: tourtraveltibet.com. Click on image to enlarge.

King Trisong Detsen’s reign had a great impact on the development of Buddhism in Tibet. In declaring Buddhism as the official religion under royal patronage, he effectively removed political opposition to the introduction of Buddhism in the country. His military power, together with diplomatic and cultural ties, paved the way for Buddhist texts to be brought into Tibet for translation into Tibetan.

The invitation of accomplished and realised Indian Buddhist masters to teach in Tibet, not to mention the complete removal of the Chinese Chan sect after their defeat in the Samye Debate, meant that Tibetan Buddhism was not diluted by other cultural influences. It is because of King Trisong Detsen that Guru Rinpoche Padmasambhava and Shantarakshita were invited to Tibet. The construction of the first Tibetan monastery by this King ensured that there would be Tibetan Sangha members and an established holy institution in which they could be trained and ordained. It became the institution for the translation of Buddhist texts and it was one of the largest repositories of Buddhist texts in Tibet in its heyday.

 

Recommended Reading

Buton’s History of Buddhism in India and its Spread to Tibet translated by Lisa Stein and Ngawang Zangpo

Buton’s History of Buddhism in India and Its Spread to Tibet (Translated by Lisa Stein and Ngawang Zangpo)

Political and Military History of Tibet, Vol-1 by Gyaltse Namgyal Wangdu

Political and Military History of Tibet: Vol 1 (Published by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives)

Buddhism Between Tibet & China, edited by Matthew T. Kapstein.

Buddhism Between Tibet and China (Edited by Matthew T. Kapstein)

Tibet: A Political History by Tsepon W.D. Shakabpa.

Tibet: A Political History (by Tsepon W.D. Shakabpa)

Concise Edition of a General History of Tibet by Chapel Tseten Phuntsog, Nortrang Urgyan and Phuntsog Tsering

Concise Edition of a General History of Tibet (by Chapel Tseten Phuntsog, Nortrang Urgyan and Phuntsog Tsering)

 

Image Gallery (Free Download)

 

Sources

  • Tibet’s Three Dharma Kings (https://kagyu.org/buddhism-in-tibet/)
  • Buddhism Comes to the Rugged Land of Tibet. Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche. (http://www.dpr.info/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/dpr_buddhismcomestotibet.pdf)
  • From King Trisong Detsen to the revival of Buddhism (https://studybuddhism.com/en/advanced-studies/history-culture/buddhism-in-tibet/history-of-the-early-period-of-buddhism-bon-in-tibet/from-king-trisong-detsen-to-the-revival-of-buddhism)
  • http://www.druponrinpoche.org/King-Trisong-Detsen
  • https://earlytibet.com/2008/08/21/buddhism-and-empire-iii-the-dharma-king/
  • Trisong Detsen and his accomplishments (https://studybuddhism.com/en/advanced-studies/history-culture/buddhism-in-tibet/tibetan-history-before-the-fifth-dalai-lama/the-empire-of-the-early-kings-of-tibet)
  • https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-great-council-of-lhasa.html
  • A discussion of the debate known as “The Council of Lhasa” by Simon Man Ho Wong in his book Wisdom in China and the West
  • http://www.rinpoche.com/stories/tibet2.htm
  • The Life Stories of Padmasambhava and their significance for Tibetan Buddhists (http://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:601766/FULLTEXT01.pdf)

 

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11 Responses to Trisong Detsen, the Great Dharma King of Tibet

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  1. Hi on Jan 9, 2020 at 11:37 am

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this interesting article. King Trisong Detsen was one of the Tibet’s Three Dharma Kings. He was the monarch responsible for the official adoption n of Buddhism as the state religion of Tibet. King Trisong Detsen also was the founder of Samye Monastery, which the full name is Bsam yas mi’ gyur lhun grub gtsug lag khang. Samye Monastery was the first monastery built in Tibet. And in 762, King Trisong Detsen built this monastery by person and took 12 years to complete in 775. It was probably founded in 767 under the patronage of King Trisong Detsen, with the work being directed by famous Indian pandit and master of Buddhist scriptures Guru Rinpoche and Shantarakshita.

    In 761 CE, Trisong Detsen request for assistance and to invite the renowned scholar Shantarakshita to Tibet in order to spread the dharma. Shantarakshita played an important role in the diffusion of Buddhism in Tibet. He become the abbot of Samye Monastery. During his life, he gave many teachings and transmissions to many people.

    After that , King Trisong Detsen listened to the advised from Shantarakshita to invite the Tantric master Guru Rinpoche to Tibet to subdue the Bon spirits. Later, King Trisong Destsen successful to changed the official religion from Bon to Buddhism in Tibet.
    We should appreciate to King Trisong Detsen because he devoted to spreading dharma so that more people can see and hear it.

  2. Wai Meng Wan on Nov 12, 2019 at 11:21 pm

    The Kings of Tibet were really Bodhisattvas, who were so determined to bring the dharma to Tibet. The debate at Samye was truly momentous, and pivotal to the dharma that took root in Tibet, the dharma landscape forever changed, and the Buddha dharma that eventually spread to Tibet came exclusively from India and Nepal.

  3. Ummamageswari on Jun 27, 2019 at 2:20 pm

    Thank you so much for this article. King Trisong Detsen was the monarch responsible for the official adoption of Buddhism as the state religion of Tibet and for putting it under royal patronage. The incarnation was Trisong Detsen, andThe Bodhisattva Manjushri, wishing to spread the Dharma and to ensure its proliferation, decided to take rebirth as a king of Tibet.

    King Trisong Detsen founded Samye Monastery where the ordination of the first seven Tibetans as Buddhist monks took place, and sponsored the translation of numerous Buddhist texts.Thank you.

  4. Cc on May 21, 2019 at 3:16 am

    🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏 Thank you Rinpoche for shating.

    Indeed thankful and greatful.
    Without King Trisong Detsen , there won’t be buddhism and dharma in Tibet.

    It is indeed inspiring.

  5. Lin Mun on May 5, 2019 at 9:08 pm

    It is very interesting to read the story of King Trisong Detsen , the 2nd Dharma King of Tibet. He has put so much effort in order to spread dharma to Tibet. Building a monastery is necessary so it can function as the dharma center and house the sangha members. It is definitely not an easy journey to build a strong military force to overcome the opposition (Bon practitioners), getting the right person and text from China and Nepal to spread dharma in Tibet. So much hardship and such strong determination. Without such work from the King and Buddhas, we may not even have the opportunity to learn dharma now, especially in the degenerate period.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article and bringing the dharma to us. Coming back to this human realm for many lifetime after lifetime to continue to uphold the dharma, lineage and help all sentient beings to be from suffering.

  6. Sharon Ong on May 3, 2019 at 3:00 am

    King Trisong Detsen’s life deeds are truly remarkable and it is no wonder that he is known as one of the 3 Dharma Kings who were instrumental for bringing and spreading Tibetan Buddhism in Tibet. Among the notable deeds by this Bodhisattva King include:
    1) The establishment of Samye Monastery, the first monastery in Tibet and where the ordination of the first seven Tibetans as Buddhist monks took place.
    2) The sponsorship of the translation of numerous Buddhist texts. Without these translations, Tibetan Buddhism not only cannot be spread but will not endure to this day.
    3) For bringing many great teachers from India such as Shantarakshita and Padmasambhava, who brought their teachings and lineages to Tibet.
    4) During his reign, his minister Thonmi Sambhota invented the Tibetan script. Without the Tibetan script, many great Buddhist literature would not have been translated to Tibetan and Tibetan Buddhism would not have spread and exist to this day.

    Interestingly, King Trisong Detsen’s incarnation lives to this day in the form of Tsem Rinpoche, whose life’s deeds mirror those of King Trisong Detsen in the form of Kechara Forest Retreat as a Tibetan Buddhist temple to preserve and spread Tibetan Buddhism. Rinpoche’s efforts to translate Dharma into various languages like Chinese and Nepali helps spread Buddhism to far off places where Dharma centres are non-existent, let alone a Guru of Rinpoche’s calibre.

  7. Pastor Albert on Apr 29, 2019 at 6:03 pm

    In just less than 100 years, the Buddhism built by the first King, King Songtsen Gampo has declined tremendously, until King Trisong Detsen came on throne, then only Buddhism in Tibet flourished again, I heard about Padmasabhava subduing powerful spirits and transform them into a Dharma Protector, But this article, it explained that King Trisong Detsen is the one who invited Padmasambhava to Tibet.

    Usually Politics and religion doesn’t goes along, but as the leader of Tibet, Songtsen Gampo and Trisong Detsen has done something amazingly great, they know what is important for the country, they know what is good to introduce to their people, hence, they brought in Buddhism, they have successfully utilize a religion to benefit their country and Tibet has become one of the powerful holy place to visit even until today.

    • BK on May 2, 2019 at 10:51 pm

      You’re right Pastor Albert. We owe a lot to King Trisong Detsen. Without him, the entire landscape of Tibetan Buddhism would look totally different to what it is today. Buddhism may never have spread in Tibet and it could have remained a Bön-practicing country. Or…Tibetan Buddhism could have taken a similar path to Chinese Chan Buddhism rather than staying true to its original Indian roots.

      Some may not know that Trisong Detsen was one of the previous lives of Dorje Shugden. In fact, even Thonmi Sambhota who invented the Tibetan script was one of the previous lives of Dorje Shugden. So the people of Tibet and in fact the entire Tibetan Buddhist practicing world owes their spirituality and culture to Dorje Shugden’s incarnation line. Dorje Shugden is definitely a Bodhisattva whose foresight and compassionate wisdom has lifted a multitude of spiritual practitioners to higher states of existence. And that is no surprise as he is none other than Manjushri, the Buddha of Wisdom.

      3DharmaKings1-S

  8. Samfoonheei on Apr 28, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    In the history of Tibetan Buddhism ,Trisong Detsen is as one of the three ‘Dharma Kings’ who established Buddhism in Tibet. It was due to his efforts that the great masters Shantarakshita and Guru Padmasambhava came from India and established Buddhism firmly in Tibet. He believed to be an emanation of the bodhisattva Manjushri, built the first monastery – Samye Chokor Ling on the model of Odantapuri. It was to be the first Buddhist monastery of the country devoted to use primarily by Tibetans. Interesting read, and do enjoyed watching the videos of the famous cham dance, the Brahmaputra and Samye Monastery at Tibet.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

  9. Tsa Tsa Ong on Apr 27, 2019 at 1:57 pm

    This is really an interesting write up about Trisong Detsen, the Great Dharma King of Tibet. And I’m quite surprised to know his mother was a Han Chinese princess from Tang China given in marriage to Emperor Me-Agtsom in an effort to ease tensions between Tibet and China. The Empress was a devout Buddhist who influenced the Emperor’s and her young son’s interest in Han Chinese Buddhism. When Trisong Detsen came into power in 754 CE, he proclaimed himself a Buddhist and granted royal patronage to the religion. This effectively formalised Buddhism as the official religion in Tibet. Perhaps one of the greatest legacies of King Trisong Detsen was the preservation of the purity of the Buddhist lineages, ensuring the direct transmission of teachings from master to disciple in an unbroken line of succession spanning centuries. I also enjoyed watching the video clips on this post. Thank you very much Rinpoche and blog team for sharing this great article!👍😘😍👏🙏

  10. Marvin on Apr 25, 2019 at 3:18 am

    In case people forget how interconnected we are,[br] remember this, King Trisong Detsen’s mother…[br][br] Chinese!

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Blog Chat

BLOG CHAT

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

Tsem Rinpoche


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

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  • S.Prathap
    Monday, Mar 30. 2020 02:26 PM
    The Yant tattoos have developed over the centuries under the influence of several different religious.They have their reasons to do it as it represents vows and commitments, blessings, kindness and love. It is a spiritual method to help someone become a better person.
    From this article we can see most people are seeking for mundane help which is quite common but what most important is how one would be able to transform their mind for better and ultimately achieve liberation from suffering.Thank you very much for this interesting article and video for exploring another type of unique spiritual tradition.

    https://bit.ly/3dH8JlA
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Mar 29. 2020 01:26 PM
    Beautiful thangka of Mahasiddha Naropa and Niguma, the Lady of Illusion paints a thousand words. In this painting the great Tantric mahasiddha Naropa sits gazing up,together with Niguma a dakini and was one of the influential yoginis and Vajrayana teachers. Niguma is one of the two female founders of the Shangpa Kagyu school of Vajrayana Buddhism. A beautiful thangka depicted with the powerful dharma protector Dorje Shugden will be wonderful to have.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/mahasiddha-naropa-and-niguma-the-lady-of-illusion
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Mar 29. 2020 01:25 PM
    Janguli is a Buddhist goddess who protects from snakes and poisons, worshiped in the ancient past. By nature Janguli is actually Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion who will protects us against snakes but actually dissolving our anger. Our anger is the root cause for destruction of merits and causes us to stay in samsara longer. A beautiful thangka depicted with Dorje Shugden the Buddha of Wisdom, Manjushri will definitely wonderful to have in our home protecting us and helping us to clear obstacles in our spiritual path.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/janguli-the-ancient-snake-goddess
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Mar 29. 2020 01:23 PM
    The practice of Vajrayogini is especially popular in the Highest Yoga Tantra of the Kagyu, Sakya and Gelug schools. Her Tantra promises rebirth in her pure land known as Kechara Paradise. When Vajrayogini is portrayed in this appearance with the left hand raised and the two feet firmly planted she is commonly referred to as the Naro Khachodma. Red in colour with one face, three eyes and two hands the left holds aloft a white skullcup. As depicted with Dorje Shugden forms a beautiful and powerful thangka.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/homage-to-the-powerful-kechari
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 27. 2020 09:15 PM
    We are so blessed hearing a sacred, holy recording of the two holy tutors of the Dalai Lama performing a Dorje Shugden kangsol (puja). Great masters HH Kyabje Ling Rinpoche and HH Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche chanting the powerful puja to Dorje Shugden. Both of them were the tutors of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. This is definitely has proven that HH Kyabje Ling Rinpoche had a close connection with Dorje Shugden. HH Kyabje Ling Rinpoche has even composed a combined prayer offering to propitiate the blessings of this enlightened Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden, which no one can denied. Both Kyabje Ling Rinpoche , Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and many Highly attained lamas of Tibet did propitiate Dorje Shugden lamas of Tibet. That’s the truth which cannot be hidden. But HH Dalai Lama insists that Ling Rinpoche, his own tutor, never relied on Dorje Shugden at all. Interesting read, may more people know the truth and understand better of the Dorje Shugden controversy.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Khong Jean Ai for this wonderful sharing .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/kyabje-ling-rinpoche-does-dorje-shugden.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 27. 2020 09:08 PM
    Tsunami Memorial in Sri Lanka is a monument remembering the 35,000 people who lost their lives just in Sri Lanka during the 2004 tsunami. In loving memory of the 40,000 people who died in the tsunami and the thousands largest single rail disaster in world history. The powerful Sri Lanka tsunami-rail disaster occurred when a crowded passenger train was destroyed on a coastal railway in Sri Lanka by a tsunami. Built by Japanese Buddhist community to commemorate this tragedy, Sri Lanka has erected a Buddha Statue dedicated to everyone who lost their lives, as well as the people who survived. A beautiful place of sad memory . Having this Buddha statue built there will definitely plant the seeds of enlightenment for who visited this place and seeing is a blessing.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this beautiful sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/touching-and-beautiful-tsunami-memorial-in-sri-lanka
  • sarassitham
    Thursday, Mar 26. 2020 11:01 PM
    Thank you for the sharing the Buddhist Tsunami Memorial in Sri Lanka. Very touching article, heart breaking to read and to see pictures of the Tsunami tragedy. It was Sri Lanka’s worst and biggest natural disaster in recorded history. Many people were killed and thousands lost their home and family.

    As we know horrify incident always remarks many unpleasant feelings and memories.
    Despite the widespread wreckage and the unfathomable lives claimed, there remains a sense of optimism in the country.

    Appreciation the people involved to build a Buddha statue to purify the mind, builds up the serenity within ones and motivates to overcome the negative emotions of fear, hence uplifting the mind and focusing the attention on the reality of the materialistic world. May Buddha bless and calm all those that passed away from the tsunami.
  • S.Prathap
    Thursday, Mar 26. 2020 02:13 PM
    Dorje Shugden is a protector that is karmically very close to us which enables him to help us with such effectiveness and speed. There are many similar testimonies which prove to us that this protector is very beneficial for us.
    Due to the power of Dorje Shugden , miracles happened and she is well after many offerings such as incense, light and pujas following Rinpoche’s advice.Thank you for this amazing miracle story of Dorje Shugden.


    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/a-dorje-shugden-miracle
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Mar 26. 2020 01:46 PM
    Venerable Geshe Sopa-lah a learned-monk spoke from his heart feelings and thoughts about what happening around the Dorje Shugden controversy and Dalai Lama as well. Those years back in India Geshe-lah did helped in the many buildings in Gaden Shartse Monastery where our Lama helped in the funds. He paints the truth of his experience sharing what he knew and gave a few points of advice. A friend of our lama for over 20 years, Venerable Geshe Lobsang Sopa-lah visited Kechara Forest Retreat, Malaysia in 2016. Geshe Sopa-lah has been actively involved in the campaign against the Dorje Shugden ban since 1996. He is in fact blacklisted, ostracised and persecuted, family tides cut as he bravely spoke about ban and even attended the protests. Sadly all of his family have since cut communications with him. Geshe Lobsang Sopa-lah now lives in Vermont, USA ,serving HH Kyabje Trijang Chocktrul Rinpoche.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/learned-monk-geshe-sopa-lah-really-shares-his-experiences.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Mar 26. 2020 01:45 PM
    Ooh dear could not imagine a well known man …James Jameson heir to the whiskey empire did such a cruel act. Well he might have his reason to do but I am sure the horrific incident will haunt him foe life. He was the grandson of the man whose signature appears on the whiskey bottles. Heartfelt reading what he did, bought an 11-year-old girl for the price of six handkerchiefs and gave her to a local chief where cannibalism existed at that time in Africa. He witnessed the most horribly sickening sight of the girl being dismembered piece by pieces , cooked and eaten without a particle remained, while he sketched the whole process. This is the most horrific, shocking story I came across.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sad sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/james-jameson-disturbing.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Mar 26. 2020 01:44 PM
    Everyone of us have the freedom of thought, conscience and religion. In this modern time I would not imagine such incident of religious liberty exist. In a school of Louisiana, USA, a teacher spoke against a Asian student CC of his religious beliefs in a number of ways. CC was berated, harassed by teachers, administrators and even to that extend of receiving calls to his house. CC ‘s parents could not tolerate anymore and decided to file a lawsuit and won the case. Religious freedom, should be allow to all. Freedom of religion requires not only freeing religion from undue government regulation and interference from any one.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/so-much-ignorance.html
  • sarassitham
    Wednesday, Mar 25. 2020 10:57 PM
    Surprise to know our colon contain of poison due to unbalance diet of food intake. It really true, our body is often conceded toxins as a result of an unhealthy food consumed. However i think it is best to keep a food journal correctly to maintain and track our food intake.

    It is really important to eliminate waste from your body every day to maintain a good lifestyle and stay healthy. Hoping to keep the simple ingredients in mind and help many to keep their colon healthy.

    Thank you very much for the article sharing a great fact that we need to take it
    seriously to save life.
  • S.Prathap
    Wednesday, Mar 25. 2020 04:09 PM
    A very good choice to place a Buddha statue there to bless the beings that are around that area. Many people had lost their lives during the tsunami in 2004 and I believe that area will be full of the spirits of the people that lost their lives during disaster.
    It good that Sri Lanka has since built and dedicated a Buddha statue for the deceased and to plant the seeds of enlightenment for all who visit and see it. Thank you for sharing nice article with us.


    https://bit.ly/2UC2g2K
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Mar 25. 2020 03:45 PM
    Winston Churchill was a British politician, military officer and writer who did twice served as the prime minister of Great Britain. Churchill did helped to lead a successful Allied strategy with the U.S. and Soviet Union during World War II. I did not know of his dark side till this post. Winston Churchill was in fact a clear racist and a stubborn imperialist. To many historians Churchill was seen as at the most brutal and brutish end of the British imperialist spectrum. Churchill’s imperialism was motivated only by an altruistic desire to elevate the putatively lower races. Winston thinks only of the colour of their skin. He hate Indians recording to him they are a beastly people with a beastly religion. These are another side to Churchill’s politics and career that should not be forgotten amid the endless parade of eulogies.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this interesting sharing of this great statesman with a darker side behind.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/not-his-finest-hour-the-dark-side-of-winston-churchill.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Mar 25. 2020 03:44 PM
    Thank you H.E. Gyara Rinpoche for spreading the Dorje Shugden practices to many thousands Tibetans in Tibet . H.E. Gyara Rinpoche an erudite scholar recently gave Dorje Shugden’s life entrustment initiation to thousands of monks and lay people in Yangting Dechen Ling Monastery. The Tibetan Leadership (CTA) has claimed that Dorje Shugden practice is a minor practice on many occasions. This is not true at all, looking at the pictures tells all. Thousands of Tibetans gathers at Yangting Dechen Ling Monastery, listening to Gyara Rinpoche’s teachings as well as the Guhyasamaja initiation clearly has proven it. He also gave commentary on Dorje Shugden’s qualities, history to strengthen the people’s faith in Dorje Shugden and explaining about the controversy.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this great news and may more people have knowledge and understanding of Dorje Shugden . May the ban on it be lifted soon.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/gyara-rinpoche-gives-dorje-shugden-sogtae.html

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The Unknown

The Known and unknown are both feared,
Known is being comfortable and stagnant,
The unknown may be growth and opportunities,
One shall never know if one fears the unknown more than the known.
Who says the unknown would be worse than the known?
But then again, the unknown is sometimes worse than the known. In the end nothing is known unless we endeavour,
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According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn\'t this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
2 months ago
According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn't this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden\'s blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
2 months ago
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden's blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
2 months ago
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat\'s doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
2 months ago
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat's doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
2 months ago
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
2 months ago
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
2 months ago
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
It\'s very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it\'s very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
2 months ago
It's very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it's very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
3 months ago
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
3 months ago
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
8 months ago
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
8 months ago
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
8 months ago
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
8 months ago
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
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At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
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At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
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See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
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Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
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Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat's land here in Malaysia
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Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
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Sacred Vajra Yogini
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha\'s mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
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Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha's mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha\'s. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
10 months ago
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha's. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
10 months ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
10 months ago
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
This is pretty amazing!

First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
10 months ago
This is pretty amazing! First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
10 months ago
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can\'t stop thinking of you and I can\'t forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
10 months ago
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can't stop thinking of you and I can't forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
10 months ago
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
10 months ago
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
10 months ago
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
10 months ago
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
11 months ago
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
11 months ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
11 months ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
11 months ago
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
DON\'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
11 months ago
DON'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
11 months ago
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
11 months ago
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
11 months ago
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
11 months ago
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
11 months ago
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
11 months ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

Videos On The Go

Please click on the images to watch video
  • Pig puts his toys away
    2 months ago
    Pig puts his toys away
    Animals are so intelligent. They can feel happiness, joy, pain, sorrow, just like humans. Always show kindness to them. Always show kindness to everyone.
  • Always be kind to animals-They deserve to live just like us.
    8 months ago
    Always be kind to animals-They deserve to live just like us.
    Whales and dolphins playing with each other in the Pacific sea. Nature is truly incredible!
  • Bodha stupa July 2019-
    8 months ago
    Bodha stupa July 2019-
    Rainy period
  • Cute Tara girl having a snack. She is one of Kechara Forest Retreat’s resident doggies.
    9 months ago
    Cute Tara girl having a snack. She is one of Kechara Forest Retreat’s resident doggies.
  • Your Next Meal!
    10 months ago
    Your Next Meal!
    Yummy? Tasty? Behind the scenes of the meat on your plates. Meat is a killing industry.
  • This is Daw
    10 months ago
    This is Daw
    This is what they do to get meat on tables, and to produce belts and jackets. Think twice before your next purchase.
  • Don’t Take My Mummy Away!
    10 months ago
    Don’t Take My Mummy Away!
    Look at the poor baby chasing after the mother. Why do we do that to them? It's time to seriously think about our choices in life and how they affect others. Be kind. Don't break up families.
  • They do this every day!
    10 months ago
    They do this every day!
    This is how they are being treated every day of their lives. Please do something to stop the brutality. Listen to their cries for help!
  • What happened at Fair Oaks Farm?
    10 months ago
    What happened at Fair Oaks Farm?
    The largest undercover dairy investigation of all time. See what they found out at Fair Oaks Farm.
  • She’s going to spend her whole life here without being able to move correctly. Like a machine. They are the slaves of the people and are viewed as a product. It’s immoral. Billions of terrestrial animals die annually. Billions. You can’t even imagine it. And all that because people don’t want to give up meat, even though there are so many alternatives. ~ Gabriel Azimov
    10 months ago
    She’s going to spend her whole life here without being able to move correctly. Like a machine. They are the slaves of the people and are viewed as a product. It’s immoral. Billions of terrestrial animals die annually. Billions. You can’t even imagine it. And all that because people don’t want to give up meat, even though there are so many alternatives. ~ Gabriel Azimov
  • Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
    11 months ago
    Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
    11 months ago
    This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
  • Beautiful Monastery in Hong Kong
    12 months ago
    Beautiful Monastery in Hong Kong
  • This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
    12 months ago
    This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
    12 months ago
    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
  • These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
    12 months ago
    These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
    12 months ago
    Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
    12 months ago
    Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
  • Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
    1 years ago
    Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
  • Beautiful
    1 years ago
    Beautiful
    Beautiful sacred Severed Head Vajra Yogini from Tsem Rinpoche's personal shrine.
  • My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
  • Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    1 years ago
    SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    Tsem Rinpoche's dog Oser girl enjoying her snack in her play pen.
  • Cute!
    1 years ago
    Cute!
    Oser girl loves the balcony so much. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
  • Uncle Wong
    1 years ago
    Uncle Wong
    We were told by Uncle Wong he is very faithful toward Dorje Shugden. Dorje Shugden has extended help to him on several occasions and now Uncle Wong comes daily to make incense offerings to Dorje Shugden. He is grateful towards the help he was given.
  • Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
    1 years ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
  • Cute baby owl found and rescued
    1 years ago
    Cute baby owl found and rescued
    We rescued a lost baby owl in Kechara Forest Retreat.
  • Nice cups from Kechara!!
    1 years ago
    Nice cups from Kechara!!
    Dorje Shugden people's lives matter!
  • Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    1 years ago
    Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Chirping birds and other forest animals create a joyful melody at the Vajrayogini stupa in Kechara Forest Retreat (Bentong, Malaysia).
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    2 yearss ago
    This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    This video is thought-provoking and very interesting. Watch! Thanks so much to our friends at LIVEKINDLY.
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    Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
  • Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
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    2 yearss ago
    Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    2 yearss ago
    This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
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    2 yearss ago
    Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
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  • Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
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    Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
  • What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    2 yearss ago
    What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    Sick animals are more profitable... farms calculate how close to death they can keep animals without killing them. That's the business model. How quickly they can be made to grow, how tightly they can be packed, how much or how little can they eat, how sick they can get without dying... We live in a world in which it's conventional to treat an animal like a block of wood. ~ Jonathan Safran Foer
  • This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
    2 yearss ago
    This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
  • SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    2 yearss ago
    SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    This happens daily in slaughterhouse so you can get your pork and Bak ku teh. Stop eating meat.

ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

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

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

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CHAT PICTURES

Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
2 weeks ago
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
2 weeks ago
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
3 weeks ago
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Rinpoche & Geshe Janchup making last minute checks before the commencement of the Jinsek or Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Rinpoche & Geshe Janchup making last minute checks before the commencement of the Jinsek or Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The arrival of the Sangha conducting this sacred puja accompanied by Changtso Beng Kooi and Pastor Niral Patel - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The arrival of the Sangha conducting this sacred puja accompanied by Changtso Beng Kooi and Pastor Niral Patel - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The site of the Peaceful Fire Puja the calls upon the pacifying energies of Shize Shugden. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The site of the Peaceful Fire Puja the calls upon the pacifying energies of Shize Shugden. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: A close-up of the ladle. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: A close-up of the ladle. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Substances such as sticks, melted butter, kusha grass, lentils and barley were traditionally offered during the prayers to create the causes for merits, long life and to pacify obstacles. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Substances such as sticks, melted butter, kusha grass, lentils and barley were traditionally offered during the prayers to create the causes for merits, long life and to pacify obstacles. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Beautifully handcrafted torma or food offering to the Buddha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Beautifully handcrafted torma or food offering to the Buddha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Some of the many offering items & substances used during this highly blessed Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
3 weeks ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Some of the many offering items & substances used during this highly blessed Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
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