Alexandra David-Néel

Mar 1, 2016 | Views: 7,785

(By Tsem Rinpoche and Pastor Jean Ai)

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraSynopsis.mp4

A short synopsis on the life of Alexandra David-Néel

Alexandra David-Néel was a woman with the “wind beneath her feet”. She was a Buddhist, Orientalist and writer born in France and dedicated her whole life to studying Asian culture and religion, and sharing it with the Western world. In fact, most of her books focus on practices within Tibetan Buddhism. As a Western woman, her dangerous travel to Lhasa, Tibet, which at the time was closed to foreigners, created worldwide renown for her. Here is a short overview of her life and travels.

Tsem Rinpoche, Pastor Antoinette and Pastor Jean Ai

 

Background and Childhood

Alexandra as a child

Louise Eugénie Alexandrine Marie David, later known as Alexandra David-Néel, was born on October 24, 1868, in St. Mandé, close to Paris, as the only child of Louis David and Alexandrine Borghmans.

Her father Louis David, born in 1815, was a teacher by profession but became a journalist to express his political ideas. He was 53 years old at the time of Alexandra’s birth. By religion he was Protestant, but rebelled against the government. He had to leave France during the coup d’état of Napoleon III in 1851 and was sent into exile to Belgium. It was there that he began giving French language lessons to the sons of a Flemish major in Louvain, which was where he met his future wife.

A teenage Alexandra, who had her imagination carried away by the books she was so fond of reading

Her mother, native to Brussels, had mixed Dutch, Norwegian and Siberian ancestry. She was the adopted daughter of the Flemish major and was a devoted Catholic. She was 36 years old at the time of Alexandra’s birth, but strongly hoped to give birth to a boy who would become a high priest. Extremely disappointed by the birth of a daughter, she did not show much love and affection to her. Her parents give her the nickname “Nini” which is the short version of Eugénie. Her father, passionate about politics, instructed his daughter on the governmental repression at that time.

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraFrenchInterview.mp4

A short French interview of the eminent explorer Alexandra David-Néel

At that time, Paris was undergoing political upheaval, which ended with 30,000 victims, the last of which were shot dead at the Père Lachaise cemetery. Wanting his daughter to know about the atrocities of humankind, he brought the 2 ½ year old Alexandra to the Père Lachaise cemetery (Alexandra David-Néel shares about this experience in a letter dated December 19, 1913).

In 1873, the family moved back to Ixelles in Belgium, a suburb of Brussels, where the young Alexandra preferred to flee to the imaginary realms of books. It was then that Louise Eugénie Alexandrine Marie David adopted the pen name of “Alexandra” even though very young in age. She first used the name Alexandra Myrial, which she used during her singing period.

As Alexandra grew older, she spent her time writing and reading, as she is seen doing here in her home

Dolls and dresses bored her and she would ask for books of faraway places during her birthdays. She ran away to Switzerland, crossing the Alps. Her mother brought her back from Italy but it was difficult to punish Alexandra. She was not bothered with hardship and she even hated being comfortable. Before the age of 15, she had already experienced, in secret, several austerities such as fasting and physical torture. She was inspired by different biographies of ascetic saints and slept on a bed of wooden planks. At the age of 15, she began to study music and singing privately.

 

Adult life

In 1889, Alexandra received the first prize in “French theatre chanting” after studying for three years at the Music Conservatory in Brussels. It is was her only diploma. During that period in history there were only two choices a woman could make: marriage or joining a convent. Alexandra however chose a third option, liberty. This was a brave choice as women had to fight to be allowed higher education, or were forced into becoming wives and mothers or maidservants.

With the help of her father, Alexandra continued her education in what mattered to her – Orientalism. Attracted by exotic stories of adventure, Alexandra longed and planned to visit India. With the financial help of her parents she left for the United Kingdom in 1889, to improve her knowledge of the English language and to satisfy her unquenchable curiosity for mysteries surrounding all things and beings. She stayed in London at the Supreme Gnosis club for a few months, studying many philosophical and religious works concerning India and China in the Supreme Gnosis club’s library and the library of the British Museum, and she met members of the Theosophical Society. Through her study of oriental translations Alexandra discovered that learning Sanskrit, the classical Indian language of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism allowed her a deeper understanding.

At a time when Western women had to fight to receive a higher education, Alexandra took matters into her own hands, travelling on her own to the Far East

At 21, she left for Paris, staying in a guestroom at the Theosophical Society for three years. She used her time following classes on various civilizations and oriental languages at the Collège de France, the Sorbonne and at the École des Hautes Études, but she never passed any of the exams. She also spent time at the Guimet museum and joined occult meetings.

In the 1890s, Alexandra decided to visit some of the temples in the region of Ceylon to discover Buddhism. She visited Madura (the sacred Brahmin city), Adyar (to visit the Theosophical Society) and Benares, where she was shocked to find a starving population.

Alexandra David-Neel and her adopted son Aphur Yongden, pose with another equally famous explorer, the Japanese monk Kawaguchi Ekai who also travelled to Tibet. David-Néel first met Kawaguchi in Kalimpong, northern India in the waiting room of the 13th Dalai Lama who lived there for three years. She met Kawaguchi once again while visiting Japan in 1917.

Alexandra David-Neel and her adopted son Aphur Yongden, pose with another equally famous explorer, the Japanese monk Kawaguchi Ekai who also travelled to Tibet. David-Néel first met Kawaguchi in Kalimpong, northern India in the waiting room of the 13th Dalai Lama who lived there for three years. She met Kawaguchi once again while visiting Japan in 1917.

Alexandra was also shocked at the extent of the animal sacrifices performed by the Hindu population, especially during the feast of Durga during which millions of buffaloes were sacrificed. She was even more shocked that even humans were victims of certain rites, especially women who were not spared by some sections of society, as some were condemned alive to join their late husbands on the funeral pyre.

Her first goal was to gain a better understanding of the three branches of Hinduism:

She read a lot, bought texts, learnt and met Swami Bashkaraanda, an old ascetic who lived naked in a rose garden. He accepted her as a student, and gave her some philosophical knowledge and classes in Sanskrit. During each of her stays in Benares, she went to meet him in his rose garden. As for Buddhism, Alexandra was at that time more interested in the Theravada traditions rather than the Mahayana or Vajrayana traditions of Tibet and Mongolia.

Back in Europe, due to bad investments, the family now earned less, and Alexandra had to earn her own keep. In 1893, at the age of 25, she began singing on stage in Belgium and later in Paris. In 1895, Alexandra was hired as the lead singer in operas in Hanoi and Haiphong in Vietnam. During this time, she took the opportunity to visit the Indochinese Peninsula and South China to learn about local Buddhist practice. In 1900, she was hired by the Municipal Opera of Tunis, Tunisia, where she met her husband, Philippe Néel.

 

Her travels

Alexandra was passionate about exploring from a young age. At the age of four or five, she ventured out on her own to explore the woods of Vincennes, an eastern suburb of Paris, but was later brought back home by the police. In 1887, at the age of 17, she ventured out to hike the Saint Gotthard Mountains, but was found by her mother who brought her home.

Taken during Alexandra’s first trip to India where she explored her interest in the Eastern religions like Hinduism

Through her work as singer, but also her interest in writing articles on the political situation, she followed her passion and visited countries in Europe (Spain, Italy, United Kingdom and Greece), in North Africa, and in Asia (India and Indochina).

In India, in the 1890s, she was especially attracted to the character of Annie Besant, who became a disciple of Helena Blavatsky, the founder of the Theosophical Society. Annie Besant was a leading figure and eventually became president of the Theosophical Society after the founder’s death in 1891. Alexandra formally joined the Society the following year, staying with Besant in London, followed by a lengthy stay at the Theosophical compound near Adyar, India in 1893. After returning from her first trip to the East, she continued to ask advice from Besant.

Alexandra on her travels

On August 9, 1911 Alexandra left her hometown Tunis in the direction of Ceylon (modern day Sri Lanka). Alexandra only returned after having visited Lhasa in Tibet in 1925. On her journey, she would visit cities in India first. In early 1912, Alexandra found herself in the little kingdom of Sikkim where she met her future spiritual teacher for the first time, the Gomchen of Lachen, who made a big impression on her. It was not until many years later that he would accept her as a student.

In December of 1912, Alexandra visited Nepal where she was received by the Maharaja in the Valley of Kathmandu. At that time, Alexandra favored Hinduism as opposed to Buddhism. It was in Nepal where she explored Brahminism, as the precursor to contemporary Hinduism. She liked to learn and explore the ideas of people’s rather than buildings and monuments.

Alexandra (far right) and her adopted son Lama Yongden on the road

After visiting Lumbini and Kapilavastu in Nepal (where Buddha was born and raised), she made her way to Benares in India and to her friends in Sikkim, where she was allowed to meet His Holiness the 13th Dalai Lama. In Sikkim, Alexandra stayed in a cave near her teacher’s cave at about 4000m above sea level. She would remain in Sikkim until 1916.

Alexandra outside her retreat cave

Over the years, Alexandra tried many times to reach Lhasa, Tibet but was always discovered by the authorities and stopped. She was finally successful in her attempts in 1924 where she remained until her return to France in May 1925.

In 1937, Alexandra left France again, this time heading towards China. She would only return home in June 1946.

 

Tibet

Alexandra with her adopted son Lama Yongden. He followed her since he was 14 years old.

Tibet during Alexandra’s time was a forbidden land. No foreigner was allowed to enter Tibet and even the population of the country and those bordering it were forced to refer all foreigners to the authorities, who would stop them from entering Tibet and reaching Lhasa, its capital.

The first time Alexandra entered Tibet was in the summer of 1916, when she was successful in reaching Shigatse. Travelling via Sikkim, she would come to meet the Tashi Lama (also known as the 9th Panchen Lama Lobsang Gelek Namgyal) during this trip. The Panchen Lama invited her to stay in Tashilhunpo Monastery but she declined as she had left all her luggage behind in Calcutta. Alexandra returned to Sikkim after a few days.

In the succeeding years, Alexandra would make many attempts to reach Lhasa but was sent back time and time again. In this way her successful attempt to reach Lhasa in 1924 was an enormous achievement on the part of Alexandra and her adopted son Lama Aphur Yongden, whom she had met in Sikkim and had first taken on as an assistant. Lama Aphur Yongden was a young monk from the Karma Kagyu order, who came to consider Alexandra as his guru over time.

Alexandra (third from left) on a yak in Tibet

Alexandra’s multiple attempts to enter Tibet and reach Lhasa helped her to gain a lot of experience, including the enormous hardship in trying to overcome Himalayan Mountains, distances of hundreds of kilometers of difficult terrain, wars and bandits, financial difficulties, difficult hygienic conditions, climates with drastic changes in weather, harsh winters and rainy seasons, sunstroke and precarious rope bridges.

Alexandra (right) travelling with Yongden

She became an expert in disguising herself as a native; only the equipment they carried exposed them as something other than pilgrims. On their last and successful trip to enter Tibet, they left behind their Western equipment and didn’t even take a camera. Alexandra only took a few compasses, and a number of rough map drafts to find her way. She chose a path through previously unexplored territory but was well-prepared.

Eventually forced to leave her horse and much of her luggage behind, and dreading that they would be caught, they eventually entered Tibet via the sacred mountain of Kha Kharpo. There, among some bushes she found an old hat worn by women, which turned out to be a lucky turn of events, as she wore it while being questioned by an officer shortly afterwards. Alexandra asked him for donations for her supposed pilgrimage in Tibetan, and showed him her tongue as was the Tibetan custom. Alexandra played her role well, pretending to be a mother accompanying her ordained son, Lama Aphur Yongden.

Alexandra with Tibetan nuns

It was during this trip that she gained valuable information regarding Tibetan culture that was unknown of outside Tibet. However, her stay in Lhasa did not remain undiscovered. The chief of the police from Darjeeling, who knew her from her stay in Sikkim recognized her. Known for his strict adherence to the law, he would have reported her to the Tibetan authorities if not for holding Alexandra in high esteem, knowing full well her sincere interest in Tibetan Buddhism.

Later in her journey, having become seriously malnourished and suffering from influenza, Alexandra and Lama Aphur Yongden decided to visit the three great monastic institutions of Gaden, Sera and Drepung. Of all the schools of Tibetan Buddhism, Alexandra was especially interested in the Gelug tradition. In fact Alexandra had already met His Holiness the 13th Dalai Lama in Kalimpong in 1912.

Alexandra recognized him from his portrait: a slightly stooped figure with wide open, riveting eyes, slightly evasive, a waxed mustache, and enormous ears (a sign of wisdom), wearing a peaked yellow cap and maroon robes. She pressed her palms together before the heart in salutation. Someone slipped a white silk scarf into her hands and she presented it but forgot the proper words. He wasn’t very tall and, a trifle unwillingly, the rebel bowed her head, whereupon the Dalai Lama reached out to bless her.

As the two conversed, the Thirteenth wondered aloud how the Frenchwoman, alone in her faith in a foreign land, could have become a practicing Buddhist without a master. To himself he must have questioned whether she was a Buddhist at all. The Christian missionaries, fond of disguises, would go to any lengths to convert his people. But David-Neel’s knowledge ran deep, and she soon satisfied him on that score, even made him smile. She tried to ignore the officious chamberlain who continued to interrupt. However, she had to admit that those Europeans interested in Buddhism were generally of the older, Theravadin school.

– The Secret Lives of Alexandra David-Neel: A Biography of the Explorer of Tibet and its Forbidden Practices

On their return, the two pilgrims paid visits to the monasteries of Samye, founded by Padmasambhava and Santarakshita, followed by Mindroling in Tsetang and the monastery of Dorje Phagmo at Samding. Alexandra wanted to see as many places as she could, since she believed these she would never return again. In June 1924, Alexandra returned to India.

 

China

Not slowed by her old age in the slightest, Alexandra David-Néel was 69 years old when she decided to leave for China with her adopted son Yongden. Alexandra had become aware of her advancing age and realised she did not have much time left to commit to travel, so she wanted to make the most of her trip. The year was 1937 and her aim was to study ancient Taoism.

Her arrival however, coincided with the Second Sino-Japanese War. This was followed by civil war, and the outbreak of the Second World War. Finding herself trapped amidst the horrors of war, extreme cold, famine and epidemics, Alexandra escaped to wander throughout China for the next 1.5 years. Her travels covered Beijing, Mount Wutai, Hankou and Chengdu.

Alexandra David-Néel in China, pictured with a grand old Chinese master.

Alexandra David-Néel in China, pictured with a grand old Chinese master.

On June 4, 1938, Alexandra arrived in Tachienlu, the Tibetan town where she would spend the next five years in retreat. It was during this period, in 1941, that she received news about the passing of her husband and best friend. When Alexandra finally left Asia many years later, it would be to organize his estate and affairs.

While in Tibet, Alexandra and Yongden completed circumambulating the holy mountain Amnye Machen. In 1945, Alexandra went back to India, thanks to the help of the French Consul in Calcutta, Christian Fouchet, with whom she remained friends until her death.

The following year, in June 1946, Alexandra David-Néel finally left Asia, departing from Calcutta. She had been in Asia for nearly a decade by this point, and was 78 years old by the time she arrived in Paris on July 1, 1946. Here, she and Yongden remained until returning to her home, Samten Dzong in Digne-les-Bains in October.

The irrepressible traveller however, could not sit still for long and in April 1957, she moved to Monaco. Whilst living in Monaco, she continued to write prolifically. She would also go on to renew her passport at the age of 101, the year of her passing. Until her last moments, it is clear that the thrill of exploration and learning never left this seeker of knowledge.

 

Her practices

Alexandra had received many Buddhist practices from masters in Sikkim and Tibet. These she details in her book Magic and Mystery in Tibet.

One of her masters was the Gomchen of Lachen, Nga-Ouang Rinchen (the abbot of the monastery of Lachen). She met him for the first time in May 1912 but it was not until years later that he accepted her as his student.

On death meditation she notes:

Starting with the idea that ‘method,’ the ‘savoir-faire,’ is of an essential importance, the Lamaists think that after having learned the art of living well one must learn the art of dying well and of “doing well” in other worlds.

Initiates acquainted with mystic lore, are supposed to know what awaits them when they die, and contemplative lamas have foreseen and experienced, in this life, the sensations that accompany death. They will, therefore, neither be surprised nor troubled when their present personality disintegrates.

She also learnt the tantric practice of tummo, or inner heat, from her teacher Lachen Gomchen Rinpoche. This practice she describes in some detail, including conditions one should practice and the actual method of practice. It is said that the yogi-saint Milarepa used this practice when he was surrounded by snow without sufficient provisions and a proper shelter, to keep himself warm. She narrates that practitioners even had competitions during which a wet cloth would be placed on a student’s shoulder and he was supposed to dry one cloth after another till the break of day, through the practice of tummo.

Gomchen Rinpoche gave her the name Yeshe Tome, meaning ‘Lamp of Wisdom‘. This proved very useful as she became known by this name to Buddhist authorities throughout Asia:

He had never been to Lhasa nor to Shigatze, nor travelled anywhere in Tibet and knew nothing of the world outside his cave. His master had lived there for more than thirty years, and when he died the present hermit had walled himself in.

Alexandra had a fondness for Buddhist debates, which she enjoyed due to their philosophical nature:

Both junior and senior students of philosophy hold discussions at regular dates. Often the latter take place in the open, and in all large lamaseries a shady garden, surrounded by walls, is reserved for that purpose.

Ritualistic gestures accompany the controversies and are a lively part of it. There are peculiar ways of turning one’s rosary around one’s arm, clapping one’s hands and stamping when putting a question: there are other prescribed ways of jumping when giving an answer or replying to one interrogation by another.

Later in her book she describes in detail a member of the Lung Gompa, who had developed the extraordinary ability to travel great distances at speed, through tantric means:

By that time he had nearly reached us; I could clearly see his perfectly calm impassive face and wide-open eyes with their gaze fixed on some invisible far-distant object situated somewhere high up in space. The man did not run. He seemed to lift himself from the ground, proceeding by leaps. It looked as if he had been endowed with the elasticity of a ball and rebounded each tine his feet touched the ground. His steps had the regularity of a pendulum. He wore the usual monastic robe and toga, both rather ragged. His left hand gripped a fold of the toga and was half hidden under the cloth. The right held a phurba. His right arm moved slightly at each step as if leaning on a stick, just as though the phurba, whose pointed extremity was far above the ground, had touched it and were actually a support.

While a tantric practitioner herself, she was well aware of the difficulties practitioners faced, and even mentions this in her description of tantra:

As for the method which mystics call the ‘Short Path,’ the ‘Direct Path,’ it is considered as most hazardous. It is – according to the masters who teach it – as if instead of following the road which goes round a mountain ascending gradually towards its summit, one attempted to reach it in straight line, climbing perpendicular rocks and crossing chasms on a rope. Only first rate equilibrists, exceptional athletes, completely free from giddiness, can hope to succeed in such a task. Even the fittest may fear sudden exhaustion or dizziness. And there inevitably follows a dreadful fall in which the too presumptuous alpinist breaks his bones.

 

Books by Alexandra David- Néel

 Book-MagicAndMysteryInTibet Book-MyJourneyToLhasa  Book-ATibetanJourney
Magic and Mystery in Tibet (download PDF) My Journey to Lhasa (download PDF) A Tibetan Journey (download PDF)
 Book-TheSecretOralTeachings  Book-TheSecretLives
The Secret Oral Teachings in Tibetan Buddhist Sects (download PDF) The Secret Lives of Alexandra David-Neel (download PDF)

The texts above were sourced from legitimate book-hosting services offering these texts for free download. They are made available here for purely educational, non-commercial purposes.

 

  • Pour la vie. 1898
  • Le Philosophe Meh-ti et l’idée de solidarité. 1907
  • Les Théories individualistes dans la philosophie chinoise. 1909
  • Le Modernisme bouddhiste et le Bouddhisme du Bouddha. 1911
  • Souvenirs d’une Parisienne au Thibet. 1925
  • Voyage d’une Parisienne à Lhassa, à pied et en mendiant de la Chine à l’Inde à travers le Tibet. 1927
  • Mystiques et magiciens du Thibet (Magic and Mystery in Tibet). 1929
  • Initiations lamaïques. Des theories – des pratiques – des homes. 1930
  • La Vie surhumaine de Guésar de Ling le héros thibétain, racontée par les bardes de son pays. (avec la collaboration du lama Yongden). 1931
  • Au pays des brigands gentils-hommes. Grand Tibet. 1933
  • Le Lama aux cinq sagesses – Romain tibétain. 1935 (par lama Yongden et A. David-Néel)
  • Le Bouddhisme – Ses doctrines et ses méthodes. 1936
  • Magie d’amour et magie noire. Scènes du Tibet inconnu. 1938
  • Sous des nuées d’orage. 1940
  • A l’ouest barbare de la vaste Chine. 1947
  • Au Coeur des Himalayas. Le Népal. 1949
  • L’Inde. Hier – Aujourd’hui – Demain. 1951
  • Astavakra Gîtâ. Discours sur le Vedânta advaïta (traduit du sanscrit). 1951
  • Les Enseignements secrets des bouddhistes tibétains. La vue pénétrante. 1951
  • Textes tibétains inédits. 1952
  • Le Vieux Tibet face à la Chine nouvelles. 1953
  • La Puissance du néant (par lama Yongden). 1954
  • La Connaissance transcendants d’après le texte et les commentaires tibétains. 1958
  • Avadhuta Gîtâ de Dattatraya. Poème mystique Vedânta advaïta. 1958
  • Le Bouddhisme du Bouddha, ses doctrines, ses methods et ses développements mahâyânistes et tantriques au Tibet. 1960
  • Immortalité et reincarnation. Doctrines et pratiques. Chine-Tibet-Inde 1961
  • Quarante siècles d’expansion chinoise. 1964
  • L’Inde où j’ai vécu. Avant et après l’Indépendance. 1969

 

Published after her death by Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet:

  • En Chine – L’amour universel et l’individualisme integral – Les Maîtres Mo-Tsé et Yong-Tchou. 1970
  • Le sortilege du mystère – Faits étranges et gens bizarres rencontrés au long de mes routes d’Orient et d’Occident. 1972
  • Journal de voyage – Lettres à son mari (11 august 1904-27 – 27 december 1917)
  • Vivre au Tibet – cuisine, Traditions et Images. 1975
  • Journal de voyage – Lettres à son mari (14 janvier 1918 – 3 December 1940). 1976
  • La lampe the sagesse (Thoughts and maxims of Alexandra David-Néel found in her notebooks and her correspondence). 1986

 

Old Age

Aged 78, Alexandra David-Néel returned to France to arrange the estate of her late husband, and began writing from her home in Digne, where she worked tirelessly. It was on October 7, 1955, Lama Aphur Yongden passed away, leaving Alexandra alone. His ashes were kept safe in the Tibetan oratory of Samten Dzong, awaiting scattering in the Ganges river, together with those of Alexandra after her death.

Alexandra in her old age

As she aged, she suffered from articular rheumatism and the discomfort of the increasing paralysis in her legs and deformation of the hands. In April 1957, she left Samten Dzong in order to live in Monaco with a friend who had been typing her manuscripts. She decided then to live alone in a hotel, moving from one place to the next, till June 1959, when she was introduced to a young woman, Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet, her new personal secretary.

Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet would stay with Alexandra until the end, watching over her like a daughter over her mother. Alexandra David-Néel even nicknamed her ‘Turtle’.

Marie-Madeleine on the far right, who would stay with Alexandra until her death in 1969

Alexandra David-Néel passed away on September 8, 1969, almost 101 years old. In 1973, Marie-Madeleine Peyronnet took her ashes to Varanasi to be scattered with those of her beloved adopted son, Lama Aphur Yongden, into the Ganges.

 

More Incredible Photos of Alexandra David-Néel

Alexandra David-Néel (centre; seated) with Silacara Bhikkhu, a Theravadan monk (left) and her main Guru Gomchen Rinpoche of Lachen (right). This photo was taken in Sikkim in 1913. Silacara Bhikkhu was a British national born on October 22, 1871 in Hull, Yorkshire (England). He became a Buddhist monk in 1906 and died on January 27, 1951 in Chichester, West Sussex (England).

Alexandra David-Néel (centre; seated) with Silacara Bhikkhu, a Theravadan monk (left) and her main Guru Gomchen Rinpoche of Lachen (right). This photo was taken in Sikkim in 1913. Silacara Bhikkhu was a British national born on October 22, 1871 in Hull, Yorkshire (England). He became a Buddhist monk in 1906 and died on January 27, 1951 in Chichester, West Sussex (England).

Alexandra David-Néel with the 9th Panchen Lama's mother at Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in Shigatse, Tibet (1916).

Alexandra David-Néel with the 9th Panchen Lama’s mother at Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in Shigatse, Tibet (1916).

Alexandra David-Néel and Sidkeong Tulku Namgyal in Sikkim (c. 1912).

Alexandra David-Néel and Sidkeong Tulku Namgyal in Sikkim (c. 1912).

Alexandra David-Néel (in white dress) with Sidkeong Tulku Namgyal (first row; middle seated) and monks at Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim (c. 1912).

Alexandra David-Néel (in white dress) with Sidkeong Tulku Namgyal (first row; middle seated) and monks at Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim (c. 1912).

Alexandra David-Néel poses in Sikkimese traditional dress, in Sikkim (c. 1913).

Alexandra David-Néel poses in Sikkimese traditional dress, in Sikkim (c. 1913).

Alexandra David-Néel with Tibetans in Eastern Tibet (1921).

Alexandra David-Néel with Tibetans in Eastern Tibet (1921).

Alexandra David-Néel (seated) with Tibetans in Eastern Tibet (c. 1921).

Alexandra David-Néel (seated) with Tibetans in Eastern Tibet (c. 1921).

Alexandra David-Néel at Tashi Lhunpo Monastery (the seat of His Holiness the Panchen Lama), where she met with His Holiness the 9th Panchen Lama. Taken in Shigatse, Tibet in 1916.

Alexandra David-Néel at Tashi Lhunpo Monastery (the seat of His Holiness the Panchen Lama), where she met with His Holiness the 9th Panchen Lama. Taken in Shigatse, Tibet in 1916.

Alexandra David-Néel in Nepal (1912).

Alexandra David-Néel in Nepal (1912).

Alexandra David-Néel (seated) with Silacara Bhikkhu, a Theravadan monk (left) and the 3rd Lachen Gomchen (right). Taken in Sikkim (c. 1914).

Alexandra David-Néel (seated) with Silacara Bhikkhu, a Theravadan monk (left) and the 3rd Lachen Gomchen (right). Taken in Sikkim (c. 1914).

 

Interviews with Alexandra David-Néel (Tibet, India, China)

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/InterviewsWithAlexandraDavidNeel.mp4

 

Le petit Tibet d’Alexandra David-Neel

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraDavidNeelMovie.mp4

 

J’irai au pays des neiges

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraDavidNeelMovie2.mp4

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraLifeandTimes.mp4

 

Alexandra David–Néel: From Sikkim to Forbidden Tibet

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/FromSikkimToForbiddenTibet.mp4

A very touching and beautiful documentary on Alexandra David-Néel as recounted by her personal secretary.  It has wonderful English subtitles and a must watch. Very inspirational. I highly recommend this.

 

Want to Connect More with David-Néel?

Public fascination of Alexandra David-Néel has endured since her passing, and her incredible life and works have been the subject of numerous books and documentaries. While the majority of them are in French, Alexandra’s own native languages, these two videos featured here (produced by CCTV) are in English. They form part of a documentary series on other interesting and notable foreigners who explored China and Tibet like Joseph Rock.

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraDavidNeel-1.mp4

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraDavidNeel-2.mp4

You can also connect more deeply with Alexandra David-Néel by visiting her home in France, which is now a historical monument and museum dedicated to her works and life.

Address: 27 Avenue du Marechal Juin, 04000 Digne les Bains, France
Phone Number: +33 4 92 31 32 38
For more information (French): http://www.alexandra-david-neel.fr
http://www.alexandra-david-neel.com/
http://www.boutique-tibetaine-alexandra-david-neel.com/

Entrance to the museum is free and all tours are guided. A maximum of 20 people are allowed per visit.

Opening Hours
  • July, August: Every day at 10 am, 2 pm, 3:30 pm (please arrive in advance, the visits being limited to 20 persons)
  • September to November: From Tuesday till Sunday: 10 am, 2 pm, 3:30 pm
  • December to March: From Tuesday till Sunday: 2 pm, 3:30 pm
  • April to June: From Tuesday till Sunday: 10 am, 2 pm, 3:30 pm
 MuseumADN-01  MuseumADN-02
The outside of Alexandra David-Néel’s home, now a museum. Click to enlarge. Prayer flags flap in the wind outside the museum dedicated to David-Néel’s life and works. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-03  MuseumADN-04
The wind carries the blessings of the prayers printed onto the flags. Click to enlarge. The peaceful entrance to the museum, formerly David-Néel’s residence. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-05  MuseumADN-06
The reception area of the museum dedicated to Alexandra David-Néel. Click to enlarge. Peaceful grounds but ever the explorer, these never tempted David-Néel to stay for long. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-07  MuseumADN-08
A memorial plaque dedicated to Tibetans lost in the 1950 Chinese Cultural Revolution. Click to enlarge. The entrance to Samten Dzong, Alexandra David-Néel’s home. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-09  MuseumADN-10
Plaques explaining that the site is a historical monument. Click to enlarge. A set-up of a puja and prayer room inside Samten Dzong, a sight David-Néel would have become familiar with on her travels. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-11  MuseumADN-12
Inside the main entrance of David-Néel’s home, Samten Dzong. Click to enlarge. Inside David-Néel’s office in Samten Dzong. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-13  MuseumADN-14
Visit the museum to connect with the first Western person to interview the 13th Dalai Lama. Click to enlarge. Gorgeous, expansive views surround Samten Dzong. Click to enlarge.
 MuseumADN-15
Hidden amongst the foliage is Samten Dzong, David-Néel’s home. Click to enlarge.

 

The Adventurous Life of Alexandra David-Neel by Alexander Maitland

Alexander Maitland, an author/ biographer explores Alexandra David-Neel’s life, travels and her fascinating sojourns among magicians on the Roof of the World in this public talk at The Buddhist Society, London.

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/AlexandraByAlexanderMaitland.mp4

 

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30 Responses to Alexandra David-Néel

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  1. Chris Chong on Feb 7, 2018 at 10:06 am

    Thank you for sharing the story of this incredible lady. Her determination in getting dharma and practicing the dharma in Tibet is very strong. No sickness , laws and hardship can deter this strong lady in pursuing what she wants, which is to meditate in a cave up in the mountains. It is amazing how dharma can influence one’s life choices and also maintain one’s mind. She is amazingly sharp and quick for a lady who is almost 101 years old. Even at her age, she renewed her passport which indicates that she wanted to continue travelling. The picture of her sitting outside her retreat cave is inspiring .

  2. Tsem Rinpoche on Jul 30, 2017 at 9:30 pm

    When I was very young, down the street from where I lived in Howell, New Jersey was a Kalmuck lady who was very spiritual. She was my friend at the time. She was in her 30’s and had a large collection of spiritual books of which many were on Buddhism. I would borrow books from her quite often and read. She would have read them and give me her thoughts on the books and highly recommend this one or that one. I would then read the books she recommended and we would often discuss about them. It was a very enjoyable time in my life. I miss this friend very much. Some of the books she had were from Professor Garma C.C. Chang, Govinda, Alexander David-Neel, Evans-Wentz, John Blofeld, etc.. and I read some of them. Those books inspired me so much. My conversations with this friend inspired me so much and I enjoyed her spiritual company tremendously. That was one part of my childhood that was good.

    I have all these books by these great authors in my library now and still read them. I have made them available from Kechara for invite and also will have them in the future Kechara library coming up.

  3. Freon on Jun 12, 2017 at 12:37 am

    Dear Pastor

    It is very inspiring to read about Alexandra David- Neel. She was so determine to get what she want and she never let the obstacles be an excuses to stop her from achieving what she wanted.

    Amazing for a lady to travel to Tibet, despite world war, authority, language, sickness, she just went all the way to Tibet. Even to the extend pretended to be Tibetan. At this point i admire her determination, her courage and the strength she have.

    Is an inspiring story for me.

    Thank you for this write up, Pastor. Even to the extend some of the books, i could download to read it.

    With appreciation,
    Freon

  4. June Kang on May 14, 2017 at 11:53 pm

    看这篇Alexandra David –Neel 的故事,感觉上她是很传奇又神话般的女士/女藏学家/女探险家/女英雄,佩服她了不起的勇气,在极不习惯的条件和极限下,徒步穿过大部分未曾有人探险考察过的地区,横跨八个月的雪域之旅,让人惊叹,在她那个时代,有多少女性会像她对西藏充满了无限的热爱和崇拜?因为她的勇气,当时西藏以外的人们才能了解到西藏的风俗习惯、宗教信仰、社会经济、历史、文化及政治情况。她所写有关西藏的一些著作被译成了德文、荷兰文、西班牙文和捷克文,间接把藏传佛教带进当时欧洲,对那些想了解藏传佛教启蒙者有很大的帮助,所以她本身的著作对欧洲佛教是很大贡献,是值得我们学习的对象。

  5. Joy on May 13, 2017 at 1:01 am

    When I read this concise bio about Alexandra David-Neel, it gives me an impression of a lady who is seeking for a higher purpose. She definitely took the road less travelled and she really followed her heart and her passion in exploring spirituality to the fullest. This is a clear sign of someone who has great spiritual imprints and definitely she was no ordinary woman!

    Even today not many people would be interested, let alone brave the very harsh environment of Tibet, yet she did with so much drive and determination to explore Tibet. Her story is one that is inspiring as it encourages us, girls, to not limit ourselves, just because we are girls and to also follow our passion wholeheartedly. She is not only courageous, she is also very focused and determined, and she never gives up, no matter how many times she was caught entering Tibet, she still persisted, each time disguising herself better. So if it is Dharma we choose to do, then we should go all they way and do it, to surrender and give our all. She is definitely someone who has led a very meaningful life.

    I find the black and white picture of her sitting outside her retreat hu most inspiring and inviting… inviting us to also go into retreat in a remote quiet environment.

  6. Uncle Eddie on May 12, 2017 at 11:17 am

    In accordance with the write-up of the short synopsis on the life of Alexandra David-Neel, she was described as been one born “with the wind beneath the feet,” a Buddhist oriental and a born writer. Born in France, but dedicated her whole life to the study of “Asian culture and religion”, with most of her books focus on Buddhism and she likes sharing with the Western World! As always been taught by Guru, our aim in taking the spiritual path is to transform ourselves with a view to helping others and ourselves to be ‘free’ from sufferings. This may at first make aware of our present powerless to do so. Then comes the desire to improve ourselves so as to overcome that obstacle, as what we can see in Alexandra David-neel’s outstanding case that, it was what exactly she was doing and finally with endless hardwork, sacrifices and patience, has achieved her aim! Like Alexandra, we sometimes have to feel like explorers, burning with desire to do what’s worth doing. Of cousre, the key of spiritual practice is to gain control over our mind, but as said, the ultimate well-being comes from fully eliminating delusion and mental toxins, and thus sufferings! My deepest wish is hopefully with whatever ideas and good and essential point gathered in this sensational article may serve as important tiny bright lights along the path guiding us to reach the ultimate happiness of all beings! As Shantideva has said, “As long as space endures, and as long as sentient beings exist, May I, too, remain, to dispel the misery of the World.” Thank you Pastor Antionette Kass for the sharing.

  7. Tek Lee on May 11, 2017 at 1:48 am

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for sharing this lovely article. Alexandra David-Néel is a Bodhisatva, she must had done very meritorious thing in her previous life to bring her to this life to pursue for Dharma. Practicing Buddhism in her country is almost not possible during that era in her country. Yet, she was not defeated by the hardship she went through, and go all the way for Dharma. It must be her imprint from her previous life that lead her there. She reminds me of nobody else but our very own Pastor Antoinette. I didn’t mean that Pastor Antoinette went all the hard way to be in Dharma, I mean she came from very far oversea Luxumberg all the way to Malaysia, and became Pastor (Sangha to be), which is really very precious. Many people in their very own country, in their very own hometown, still unable to meet Dharma. May Dharma be stronger and spread to all directions, so that it can reach many other countries to let people practice Dharma, and benefit more people. _/\_

  8. Vivian Ong on May 10, 2017 at 11:17 pm

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette and Pastor Jean Ai for posting this article. I’m amazed at Alenxandra as she is a tough lady and went through many hardships in her life. She also liked and started to practice Buddhism in that era which we could hardly find a Westerner practising it.

    With folded palms,
    Vivian

  9. Pastor Antoinette on May 10, 2017 at 7:33 am

    The life of Alexandra David-Néel is showing that eventhough the conditions are very difficult and unlikely to do, we can reach our goal. Her wish and determination to discover Tibet and to share it with the world has given us a wonderful legacy to read and see by visiting her home Samten Dzong.

    Thank you Pastor Jean Ai for revisiting the article and adding more interesting information and videos from this pioneer from the West.

    The books from Alexandra David-Néel are an inspiration and a treasure to read. Tibet with the monasteries, people, customs and practitices can be discovered through Alexandra David-Néel’s books. Through her sacrifices, inspiration and tremendous hardship, we have the opportunity to dive into the old Tibet and read about it.

    Thank you Rinpoche for giving everyone the opportunity, through this blog, to discover the old Tibet through Alexandra David-Néel.

  10. Pastor Chia on May 10, 2017 at 3:27 am

    Alexandra termination for traveling explore to get more knowledge is very inspiring. With her effort and writing. Western country people able to connect with sacred vajrayana practice in Tibet from the last century. What incredible is Alexandra also the female tantric practitioner from westerner which link the Buddhism from East to the West. Without her avenger journey for her whole life, non of this will happen. Her whole life experience with her journey to the East has dedicated benefit many people.

  11. Mingwen on May 10, 2017 at 1:29 am

    Incredible life stories! So much adventures for a lady from French, 2 centuries ago.

    Nothing is impossible, It’s just difficult! Determination, passion, kindness will lead us to the same way

  12. Justin Cheah on May 9, 2017 at 11:46 pm

    Alexandra gives me an impression as though she is back into this life looking for something. I think she must have made strong prayers to be able to be reconnected back with Buddha’s teachings and be close to Buddhism in her previous life. Her inclination is very strong and I am impressed with her strong will to make it to Lhasa despite facing obstacles after obstacles. She is one real traveller and am glad that I have read one of the most inspiring and interesting life story of a person in Alexandra who lived up to 101 years old. Thank you PAK and PJA for researching and writing this article.

  13. pammie yap on May 9, 2017 at 11:33 pm

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for such an inspiring life story!
    Even since young, her imprints was strong and her curiosity for so many things is amazing! Even meeting high Lamas at a young age showed that her previous aspirations must have been strong. She did things that many people at her age would not want. Why would someone want to live a hard life when you can have a comfortable one?

    Even with many obstacles, she persevered and went on. Such strong spirit! When I read about the conditions she had to endure just to get to Lhasa, I was shocked and amazed at the same time. She is a real strong woman mentally and physically. Spending so much time travelling just to learn. And when she realised she didn’t have more time, instead of resting and writing more books, she continued travelling! Unbelievable!
    H.E. Tsem Rinpoche is another great example of someone who persevered in finding His spiritual path and He did not stop even though He had many obstacles. Today, we have Kechara Organisation where many are benefitting from. https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/h-e-the-25th-tsem-tulku-rinpoches-biography.html

  14. Eric kksiow on May 9, 2017 at 11:25 pm

    Such an interesting article to talked about Alexandra David-Néel, she’s make me think of Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo. She ( Alexandra David-Néel ) don’t give up for her spiritual practices ( journey ), i really admire to all the monks and nuns who’s never give up their spiritual practices and go all the way.

    More info of Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo – https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/videos/tenzin-palmo-cave-in-the-snow.html

    From the deep of my heart
    Much respect _/\_ to all of them ( Monks and Nuns )
    Thank You PAK & PJA for this wonderful article.
    _/\_

  15. Pastor Henry Ooi on May 9, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    Alexandra could have been an adventurer in one of her previous lives for her to have such an early imprint as a young child with the yearn to travel. Perhaps in another life she was born in the Himalayan region. Her story is an inspiration, more so for a woman during her time who broke all rules to explore countries far away from France. Her sheer determination is admirable, true grit.
    This story relates to Rinpoche’s longing to be on a mountain or in a valley surrounded by lush beautiful landscape, water flowing from the mountains forming a crustal clear lake, sharing the land with other creatures of the wild. Living in harmony with nature, making offerings to Buddhas, engaging in spiritual retreats

  16. Pastor Albert on May 9, 2017 at 10:37 pm

    it is really inspiring reading the life story of David-Néel. In some ways, I felt that she is very similar to H.E. the 25th Tsem Rinpoche, such as pursuing something they believe in, even though there are many obstacles, but they will never give up, if one way cant work, they will try another way until they succeed, as Rinpoche always say “what’s there to lose”? Even if we tried till last minute, we only go back to what we were before, there is nothing to lose for trying, but everything to lose for not trying.

    For David-Néel, I cannot imagine the difficulties she has to go through, being born in the time where Buddhist is not so popular in European countries, being born as a female that is encouraged to only get married and take care of the family, being born in a very conservative era, but David-Néel did not bend down to her ‘fate’, she decided to go against the stream and took a different route to chase after her dream, she dedicated her 101 years of life pursuing her Dharma and nothing else but only Dharma in her life.

    She has definitely lived up her life so beautifully, thank you Pastor Antoinette and the team for researching and sharing David-Néel’s life story.

  17. Andrea Lai on May 9, 2017 at 10:31 pm

    Wow! Such an interesting and adventurous story of Alexandra David Neel. I really admire her bravery, confidence and her strong determination and great interest on searching knowledge on Tibetan Buddhism and cultures. Despite of her race and discrimination from entering Lhasa, she never gave up hopes. Obstacles kept coming to her on her spiritual journey and she faced it with much tolerance, endurance and her attempted on achieving her dreams bare fruits in the end. What I like about this lovely lady was her courage, determination and compassion towards her desire on achieving her goal. This is the actual quality one person should acquired in Life.
    I think, Mdm. Alexandra have create a very good karma for herself in this life and next. May she will meet her guru in her next life and continue her spiritual journey to enlightenment. Thank you Rinpoche, Pastor Antoinette and Pastor Jean Ai for sharing this wonderful article.

  18. nicholas on May 9, 2017 at 10:13 pm

    Alexander really led a remarkable life. She live her life as an spiritual explorer to seek for her interest in spirituality. Her courage and never give up spirit didn’t stop her not matter how hard the situation is and with that motivation and perseverance she really go all the way and achieve what she wants. She has a strong realisation from young where she felt that she was wasting time just enjoying holiday with family. Through the spiritual journey she had learn so much and she really fully utilise her life for spiritual and till the end of her life. Inspiring journey and attitude she has.

    Her journey seeking for spirituality just remind me of H.E. the 25th Tsem Rinpoche where left home at early age to seek for his spiritual. From very young Tsem Rinpoche always incline with Buddhism and met the great Lama to learn and with his perseverance even gone through so much hardship, Rinpoche continue to with his believe to be a monk and benefited so many people now not only in Malaysia but also many people around the world through the internet.

  19. Samfoonheei on May 5, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Interesting story …. the adventurous life of Alexandra David Neel.She so courageous,determination and adventurous for such a lady to travel to unknown places to seek Buddhiam knowledge.I do admired her will power and determination.Travelling at that time was really hard,could not imagine that situation.She made it somehow after so many attempts to cross to Tibet. Found her guru,started her spiritual journey and wrote a number of books about Buddhist practices. It is amazing how determined Alexandra David-Néel was.Hope this will inspired more westerner to travel to seek more of Buddism practice.And this will also encourage and inspired us all.
    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for sharing. I do enjoyed reading these post.Will try to get some of Alexandra David Neel’s book.

  20. Julia on May 3, 2017 at 2:14 am

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette. Very interesting and inspiring write up. Alexandra David Neel made full use of her life which is 101 years chasing for what she believed. She following her heart all the way, which I believe due to her strong imprint from her pass life and finally found her guru and started her tantric path during her older age.

    It’s really not easy as a woman at that century to pursue a dream and successful. She over come so much of hardship by having that determination and passion in her mind to look for her spiritual path. She not only opened up the mystery of tantric to the west, she also written down the history from the unexploited part of the spiritual world at that time.

    I would love to read her books. It was amazed to read about her tantric practice in the book The Magic and Mystery of Tibet here.

  21. Anne Ong on Dec 10, 2016 at 9:27 pm

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for sharing an interesting story about the adventurous life of Alexandra David Neel. I really admire for her independant mind at a very young to wandering off alone. And strong courage,brave and determination to travel all the way to Tibet to pursue spirituality. Definitely an awe inspiring read and should be an encouragement for me and everyone to overcome my easy obstacles to reach higher spiritual goals.

  22. Sock Wan on Nov 24, 2016 at 11:24 am

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for sharing with us the life of this adventurous woman called Alexandra David-Neel. It is For a woman in her era, it must have been difficult for her having a different thinking from the ‘normal people’. She liked to explored and she took the courage to explore to far east, to countries she had no idea how they were like. She was never restricted by her gender or her age, I read that at her very old age, she was still writing books.

    She has left behind so many information about Tibet and Buddhist practices, back then it was something very remarkable. She must also have heard a lot of people telling her she cannot do this, she cannot do that, but she did not listen to them and went ahead anyway. We all have our potential, do not let others discourage us. What they don’t want to do or cannot do, does not mean we would not be able to do.

  23. Wan Wai Meng on Jul 29, 2016 at 1:58 am

    What an interesting article about this lady who travelled in search of knowledge and she was not afraid of any kind of hardship. Thank you for this lovely article a most eye opening, Western take at learning about spirituality.

  24. Sofi on Mar 30, 2016 at 9:51 pm

    Thank you Pastor Antoinette for the wonderful write up on Alexandra David Neel. I am absolutely amazed at her courage to fulfill her wanderlust and spiritual exploration. She must have very strong imprints from her past lives to have that urge to seek spiritual although faced with so much obstacles, especially during the times where women either marry or join the convent. She display extraordinary observations and memory, remembering from as young as two years of age, when her father brought her to the cemetery to witness death.
    Her journey of discovery sounds so like an adventurous story book but I am sure it had been fraught with danger and hardship, which she took on as a challenge to be overcome. I certainly would be enthralled at her feet listening to her life.
    Definitely an awe inspiring read and should be an encouragement for me to overcome my easy obstacles to reach higher spiritual goals.

  25. Datuk May on Mar 5, 2016 at 6:12 pm

    I have never heard of nor read about Alexandra David Neel, but reading it now through the contribution of Pastor Antionette, I am both amazed at her feat to study and learn Buddhism.

    Imagine what she had to go through to achieve her knowledge in her faith during the 19th Century when airplanes were non existent. I admire her tenacity to achieve enhancement to her faith. Her affinity and imprint of the Dharma must be huge.

    Today for many of us, we can study the Dharma from the internet and all that is needed is to sit down and do so. It is with this ease that I rejoice and that the Dharma will be learnt by many more people.

    • Pastor Antoinette Kass on Mar 14, 2016 at 8:19 pm

      Dear Datuk May,

      Indeed it is amazing how determined Alexandra David-Néel was. The situation for women was already difficult at that time but she found her way even through the Himalayas and to Tibet. She put a lot of effort to study and share about her travels and the practices she had learnt when very few from the West have travelled so far.

      Thank you for your comment.

  26. Sarah on Mar 3, 2016 at 6:16 pm

    I enjoyed reading this article very much. Thank you Pastor Antoinette. I love reading about spiritual journeys like this one about Alexandra David-Neel. She was indeed a deeply spiritual person and she led a fascinating life. It is said that she was the first woman to interview the 13th Dalai Lama. The first eye-witness account of a lung gompa that reached the Western world came from the graphic description she gave in her book “With Mystics and Magicians in Tibet”.

    Another interesting traveler and researcher of Tibetan culture was Lama Anagarika Govinda who, in his autobiographical work, “The Way of the Clouds”, wrote about Alexandra David-Neel’s work and experiences in Tibet. In 1932, when he was in Gangtok, Sikkim, he stayed with a Sikkimese nobleman called Enche Kazi. He said that he stayed in the same house Lama Yongden had lived as a young boy, serving the family to earn his livelihood and education, since he came from a poor family. It was in Enche Kazi’s house that Alexandra David-Neel met Yongden and decided to take him with her with the Kazi’s consent. According to Lama Govinda, this decision completely changed Yongden’s life as well as her own, and helped to make Tibet known to millions of readers all over the world.

    • Pastor Antoinette Kass on Mar 10, 2016 at 8:11 pm

      Dear Sarah,

      You have inspired me to research and write about Lama Anagarika Govinda. Please see here: http://bit.ly/1RBuKyX

      Thank you for your kind comment.

  27. JP on Mar 2, 2016 at 8:49 pm

    I have never heard of Alexandra David-Neel. But having read this article of her, it gave me an insight of how this curious and determined lady bull dozed her way to learn and quench her curiosity. I can imagine how tremendously difficult it must have been for her to travel alone in a time where it was unheard of for a lady to go to distant places in Asia, let alone Tibet in pursuit of spirituality.

    We have it much easier compared to her when it comes to learning the dharma and other religions. Everything is on the internet and a flight away. So there is really no reason why we can’t dedicate some time to learn and practice any form of spirituality.

    Alexandra had the good merits and fortune to meet HH The 13th Dalai Lama and Panchen Rinpoche. It is through accounts written by people like her that we can get a glimpse of how life was back then in Tibet when Tibet was prohibited from foreigners.

    • Pastor Antoinette Kass on Mar 10, 2016 at 8:01 pm

      Dear JP,

      Indeed her determination was very strong and she benefited so many people by bringing Dharma to many people all over the world.

      Thank you for your comment.

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  • Yee Yin
    Monday, Jan 21. 2019 03:29 AM
    Most of us are very afraid or scared if we see the ghosts because we don’t know what to expect. We are afraid that they might harm us or disturb us. However, Buddha Shakyamuni taught us not to be afraid of them because being born as a ghost or spirit, it is actually a great suffering. We should generate compassion for them.

    We take rebirth as a spirit or ghost due to our miserliness and anger. As a spirit, we will suffer from hunger, thirst, loneliness and tremendous cold and heat. We can also experience these when we are in human form, we should know how much pain it is to be in that state. Imagine if we have to live like this every day for hundreds or maybe thousands of years? Therefore, it is very important for us to cut the miserliness and also the anger.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/helping-ghosts-and-others-through-mantras
    [no sender]
  • Yee Yin
    Monday, Jan 21. 2019 03:04 AM
    Shantideva was born a wealthy prince. However, he gave up material wealth to join the monastery to become a monk. He was an extraordinary scholar, monk and philosopher. He is considered as one of the 84 Mahasiddhas. When Shantideva was in the monastery, he was not liked as he was not seen studying nor participating in the curriculum. But later, his delivery of the teaching of “The Way of the Bodhisattva” had showed him to be very learned to the surprise of his detractors.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/kick-shantideva-out
    [no sender]
  • Yee Yin
    Monday, Jan 21. 2019 02:53 AM
    Have you seen this unique depiction of Vajrayogini before? She is depicted with her holding her own severed head. This form of Vajrayogini is called Ucheyma. The practice of this form of Vajrayogini helps us to cut the root of our sufferings from the source, it is a lineage originated from the Panchen Lama. We are not allowed to do her practice or recite her mantra without the initiation. However, we can keep her image for us to create the cause to be able to receive her teaching in the future.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/why-does-vajra-yogini-remove-her-own-head
    [no sender]
  • Lin Mun
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 09:33 PM
    We are very fortunate to be able to watch these precious video of Dorje Shugden taking trance when Rinpoche was in the monastery and hotel. That shows how close the relationship of Rinpoche with Dorje Shugden. Taking trance in Tibetan Buddhism is very different from what we normally see in the Taoism lineage. An oracle is a sangha member who are specially trained otherwise the holy beings are not able to enter the oracle. Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this precious footage to all of us.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/dorje-shugden/never-seen-before-footage-of-dorje-shugden-oracles.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 07:38 PM
    Been a multi-racial country freedom of religion is enshrined in the Malaysian Constitution. Its not surprised to see so many beautiful Buddhist or Indian statues been built in Malaysia. Just in Malaysia we have six incredibly stunning Big Buddha Statues which is truly amazing. I have visited most of those Big statues except Wat Machimmaran, in Kelantan. Heard of the beauty of the “Sitting Buddha” which is the largest Buddha statue in a seated posture within South-East Asia. Wish I could visit this beautiful statue one day.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/6-incredibl-stunning-big-buddha-statues-in-malaysia.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 07:36 PM
    Great to know the many benefit of Shize’s practice. Shize is no other than Manjushri, emanating to specifically heal our sicknesses, clearing obstacles which enables us to gain realizations and to practice Dharma. Shize’s practice also helps us to calm disharmony situation down and to find peaceful resolutions where there is an argument . This practice has so much other benefits as well.
    Thank you Rinpoche and the writers team for this wonderful article. May it continue to benefit more and more people now and in future.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/downloads/shize-a-practice-for-healing-and-long-life.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 07:35 PM
    Tengboche Monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery of the Sherpa community in the Khumbu valley of eastern Nepal. Wow….It is the largest monasteries in Everest region located at an altitude of 3,867 metres (12,687 ft), As a leading Buddhist centre of spirituality and pilgrims in the Himalayan area, half way to Everest Base Camp trek, the monastery has become a house name to trekkers and climbers to Everest Base Camp. Combine that with the history , rich culture, and unspoilt traditions of the indigenous Himalayan mountain people has attracted thousands of visitors yearly there. With the colourful Mani Rimdu festival, which is a culmination of Buddhist celebrations with religious gathering, songs have attracted tourist as well to Tengboche Monastery every October. I do wish to visit this beautiful monastery with a rich history someday. Beautiful pictures shared and interesting read.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/travel/tengboche-monastery-nepal.html
  • Chris
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 03:03 AM

    Thank you, Rinpoche for constantly thinking about ways to let us collect more merits in a short amount of time. Rinpoche is so kind to have placed numerous 9ft outdoor Buddha statues around Kechara Forest Retreat for us to circumambulate daily and collect merits. On top of that, Rinpoche also made mantra stones which can be invited from Naropa’s Cave to offer up to their favourite Buddha and placed them around or near the Buddha statue in Kechara Forest Retreat.

    When more people offer mantra stones around a particular Buddha statue, when we circumambulate, it will be more effective. Why? Because each mantra stone represents the Buddha himself because the mantra is the manifestation of Buddha in the sound form. Hence, if the mantra stones are piling up around the statue and we go and circumambulate around the statue, it will be very powerful.

    The whole place will be very powerful and we can get tons of merits and the person who offered the mantra stone will get tons of merits too! This is just one of the many ways that Rinpoche constantly coming up for us to earn merits in a short but effective way. Thank you, Rinpoche for kindness and compassion.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/underwater-mantra-stone-blessings
  • Yee Yin
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 12:55 AM
    Freda Bedi was the first Western woman who took ordination in Tibetan Buddhism. She was ordained by the 16th Karmapa in Sikkim. She was quite involved in the Tibetan community when the Tibetans first arrived in India in 1959. At that time, Nehru had asked her to help the Tibetans and she was in charge of the Social Welfare Board.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/freda-bedi
    [no sender]
  • Yee Yin
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 12:43 AM
    Why is it important to read the biography of a high lama? Many high lamas have faced downfalls, plots, hatred and backstabbing in their lives. How they deal with them are inspiring and it gives us hopes. We can learn from them how to still be kind and compassionate even though we may be hurt.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/a-group-finished-reading-the-autobiography-of-h-h-kyabje-trijang-rinpoche
    [no sender]
  • Yee Yin
    Sunday, Jan 20. 2019 12:04 AM
    Did you know there is a beautiful forest recreational park in Bukit Tinggi, Bentong called Lentang Forest Recreational Park? There are many tall old trees and scattered boulders in this forest reserve, it even has a look for the Jurassic Park in its more isolated areas. It is a very popular recreational choice for visitors on weekends.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/lentang-forest-recreational-park-pahang-state
    [no sender]
  • Lin Mun
    Saturday, Jan 19. 2019 09:53 PM
    It is so important to support sangha members. Without them we would not have the opportunity to learn dharma and it continue to degenerate. Sangha members are the one who focus full time into dharma and making sure to spread and benefit all sentient beings. Therefore, we should appreciate their kind effort and support them.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/we-gave-alms-to-the-monks
  • Lin Mun
    Saturday, Jan 19. 2019 09:44 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for reminding us to have strong Guru Devotion and practicing it. It is very important as a Buddhist to have this strong relationship with the Guru because he is the one who can lead us to enlightenment.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/great-excerpt.html?fbclid=IwAR3AwANHFFXoqy5WdI1fQnDIA3bbybZoKRlVClyYfdruTHtlN1rNav-OunU
  • Stella Cheang
    Saturday, Jan 19. 2019 12:28 PM
    Thank you, Rinpoche, for sharing with us what constitute a good presentation of a debatable topic. Evidence of visitors from space had been recorded in many civilisation throughout history, it even appeared in the volumes in Tibetan Buddhism scriptures. The fiery chariots of the “Gods” in those ancient records resemble spacecraft by today’s standard. It leads me to feel that as mankind gain more knowledge of the wider horizon of living beings, we are getting closer to realising how small we actually are.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/chariots-of-the-gods.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jan 19. 2019 12:23 PM
    Wow beautiful paintings of the six Sakya Trizins or throneholders of Sakya. Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Dharma Protector has been practiced and propitiated by many high attained great Lamas. Throughout Sakya tradition and up today, besides the Sakya throneholders, there were many other great Sakya throneholders who practised and proliferated Dorje Shugden Tanag.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/throneholders-of-sakya

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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The Unknown

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

Photos On The Go

Click on the images to view the bigger version. And scroll down and click on "View All Photos" to view more images.
California did the right thing! This news makes me very happy and I hope other states in the US and nations will follow suit. - https://bit.ly/2LXo2tg
2 weeks ago
California did the right thing! This news makes me very happy and I hope other states in the US and nations will follow suit. - https://bit.ly/2LXo2tg
The extraordinary life of Lady Lhalu- https://bit.ly/2FbkIdj
2 weeks ago
The extraordinary life of Lady Lhalu- https://bit.ly/2FbkIdj
So many beautiful flowers....There are more on the others side too. I have offered them to the Buddhas...
2 weeks ago
So many beautiful flowers....There are more on the others side too. I have offered them to the Buddhas...
Lovely mini statues perfect for small apartments, your work desk or any space. Vajra Yogini who leads you to Kechara Paradise. Manjushri who confirms great wisdom and realizations. Dorje Shugden in his various forms. The perfect trio at around 7.5 inches each. From www.vajrasecrets.com and Kechara\'s Flea market (Naropa\'s Cave).
2 weeks ago
Lovely mini statues perfect for small apartments, your work desk or any space. Vajra Yogini who leads you to Kechara Paradise. Manjushri who confirms great wisdom and realizations. Dorje Shugden in his various forms. The perfect trio at around 7.5 inches each. From http://www.vajrasecrets.com and Kechara's Flea market (Naropa's Cave).
Click on picture and read and do share with others. Tsem Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
Click on picture and read and do share with others. Tsem Rinpoche
Why bigger Buddha statues are more beneficial | 为何佛像越大、越多越好find out here- https://bit.ly/2FauD2M
2 weeks ago
Why bigger Buddha statues are more beneficial | 为何佛像越大、越多越好find out here- https://bit.ly/2FauD2M
CUTE ATTACK!-

Oser girl loves the balcony so much. She is so cute! - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
2 weeks ago
CUTE ATTACK!- Oser girl loves the balcony so much. She is so cute! - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
Please click on photo and read this one in two languages.
2 weeks ago
Please click on photo and read this one in two languages.
Click on photo to enlarge and please read and share.
2 weeks ago
Click on photo to enlarge and please read and share.
.



As long as a sentient being perceives a non-existent ‘I’ and abides within the state of its resultant projections, both subtle and gross karma will be accumulated even if one is just sitting still and doing nothing.~Tsem Rinpoche 



.
2 weeks ago
. As long as a sentient being perceives a non-existent ‘I’ and abides within the state of its resultant projections, both subtle and gross karma will be accumulated even if one is just sitting still and doing nothing.~Tsem Rinpoche .
Father Spends Quality Time With His Son. See what they do.- https://bit.ly/2Ax5ICN
2 weeks ago
Father Spends Quality Time With His Son. See what they do.- https://bit.ly/2Ax5ICN
Liang Jing who found a wonderful organic hat to block out the sun! Liang Jiang is such a polite, well-mannered, easy going young adult who just cooperates with everything you ask him to help with. He is a delightful young person and he helps his dad maintain our organic vegetable patch on Kechara Forest Retreat land in Bentong, Malaysia.
2 weeks ago
Liang Jing who found a wonderful organic hat to block out the sun! Liang Jiang is such a polite, well-mannered, easy going young adult who just cooperates with everything you ask him to help with. He is a delightful young person and he helps his dad maintain our organic vegetable patch on Kechara Forest Retreat land in Bentong, Malaysia.
Great father and son team at Kechara Forest Retreat harvesting vegetables.
2 weeks ago
Great father and son team at Kechara Forest Retreat harvesting vegetables.
Cute little He Wei working with his dad putting Dorje Shugden mantra stones on the grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat. He is very energetic. Tsem Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
Cute little He Wei working with his dad putting Dorje Shugden mantra stones on the grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat. He is very energetic. Tsem Rinpoche
See what 560 monks in Langmu Monastery are doing | 美丽的朗木赛赤寺与560名寺僧 - https://bit.ly/2VtSIqo
2 weeks ago
See what 560 monks in Langmu Monastery are doing | 美丽的朗木赛赤寺与560名寺僧 - https://bit.ly/2VtSIqo
Meaning Behind the Fasting Buddha Statue- https://bit.ly/2s7Oh79
2 weeks ago
Meaning Behind the Fasting Buddha Statue- https://bit.ly/2s7Oh79
See video- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q53GTR-Kya0&feature=youtu.be


您有没有想过如何用自己有限的预算来供养大佛像?

看看Julia和大家分享她所制造将要来到克切拉禅修林的9尺多杰雄登佛像的经验。你将学会如何将 放进这大佛像里面来累积无休止的功德给您自己和身边的人。

欢迎你来PJ的克切拉佛教中心或文冬的克切拉禅修林做你的供养货上网 
https://www.vajrasecrets.com/9ft-dorje-shugden-statue-insertion-fund
2 weeks ago
See video- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q53GTR-Kya0&feature=youtu.be 您有没有想过如何用自己有限的预算来供养大佛像? 看看Julia和大家分享她所制造将要来到克切拉禅修林的9尺多杰雄登佛像的经验。你将学会如何将 放进这大佛像里面来累积无休止的功德给您自己和身边的人。 欢迎你来PJ的克切拉佛教中心或文冬的克切拉禅修林做你的供养货上网 https://www.vajrasecrets.com/9ft-dorje-shugden-statue-insertion-fund
11 Frightening & Unusual paranormal stories- https://bit.ly/2LQ7zGV
2 weeks ago
11 Frightening & Unusual paranormal stories- https://bit.ly/2LQ7zGV
Respected lamas of any devoted students will have two stupas for their remains. One stupa inside the ladrang of the lama and one stupa outside for the public to worship and do kora. By keeping the remains of the lama\'s previous lives in stupas, and making offerings, generates the merits for the current incarnation and future incarnations of the lama to be able to do more dharma work to benefit others. 

Here is a beautiful indoor stupa to a lama in Tibet. It is up to the strength of the devotion of the students to create such stupas in respect and dedication of their lama\'s previous incarnation(s). TR
2 weeks ago
Respected lamas of any devoted students will have two stupas for their remains. One stupa inside the ladrang of the lama and one stupa outside for the public to worship and do kora. By keeping the remains of the lama's previous lives in stupas, and making offerings, generates the merits for the current incarnation and future incarnations of the lama to be able to do more dharma work to benefit others. Here is a beautiful indoor stupa to a lama in Tibet. It is up to the strength of the devotion of the students to create such stupas in respect and dedication of their lama's previous incarnation(s). TR
The Phenomena of Oracles among various cultures. Very interesting- https://bit.ly/2s3vTfF
3 weeks ago
The Phenomena of Oracles among various cultures. Very interesting- https://bit.ly/2s3vTfF
His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in Heruka Tantric dress
3 weeks ago
His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in Heruka Tantric dress
His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in front of the bodhi tree in Bodhgaya. The bodhi tree Lord Buddha sat under and became enlightened. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche in front of the bodhi tree in Bodhgaya. The bodhi tree Lord Buddha sat under and became enlightened. Tsem Rinpoche
When you don\'t have sangha/centre to bless your Buddha images, here\'s how you can do it yourself- https://bit.ly/2TmtJn2
3 weeks ago
When you don't have sangha/centre to bless your Buddha images, here's how you can do it yourself- https://bit.ly/2TmtJn2
Lovely people who are so faithful and interested in Dorje Shugden when they visited us. They understand the benefits and embrace the practice. I wish them well, happiness, peace and spiritual growth. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Lovely people who are so faithful and interested in Dorje Shugden when they visited us. They understand the benefits and embrace the practice. I wish them well, happiness, peace and spiritual growth. Tsem Rinpoche
Dear everyone, 


Plse take a peek at this one. Cute and interesting. Don\'t miss it: 




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmC4fYVePms





TR
3 weeks ago
Dear everyone, Plse take a peek at this one. Cute and interesting. Don't miss it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmC4fYVePms TR
One of my favorite sci-fi movies when growing up as a kid.  It was a B-movie, but somehow it worked & I liked it. :)
3 weeks ago
One of my favorite sci-fi movies when growing up as a kid. It was a B-movie, but somehow it worked & I liked it. :)
Doing Dharma work and a powerful motivation: https://bit.ly/2EXfeTh
3 weeks ago
Doing Dharma work and a powerful motivation: https://bit.ly/2EXfeTh
Another piece of beautiful artwork for you to enjoy-please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
3 weeks ago
Another piece of beautiful artwork for you to enjoy-please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
A beautiful Tsunami memorial in Sri Lanka. Such a placid and calm place. A must see- https://bit.ly/2QSV1Vf
3 weeks ago
A beautiful Tsunami memorial in Sri Lanka. Such a placid and calm place. A must see- https://bit.ly/2QSV1Vf
A touching and moving hug- https://bit.ly/2Q5PtBv
3 weeks ago
A touching and moving hug- https://bit.ly/2Q5PtBv
The Reputation of Brave Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Tenzin- https://bit.ly/2RhoWpr
3 weeks ago
The Reputation of Brave Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Tenzin- https://bit.ly/2RhoWpr
His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche the compassionate vidyadhara and yogi. He always manifest wrathful energy on the outside, but on the inside he is filled with compassion. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche the compassionate vidyadhara and yogi. He always manifest wrathful energy on the outside, but on the inside he is filled with compassion. Tsem Rinpoche
Please see more beautiful pictures of this huge golden outdoor Tsongkapa overlooking mountain ranges Xiaqiong (Jakhyung) Monastery, Qinghai, Tibet- Click here- https://bit.ly/2GGw1Mh
4 weeks ago
Please see more beautiful pictures of this huge golden outdoor Tsongkapa overlooking mountain ranges Xiaqiong (Jakhyung) Monastery, Qinghai, Tibet- Click here- https://bit.ly/2GGw1Mh
The Magnificent Standing Dorje Shugden -

High resolution download-please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
4 weeks ago
The Magnificent Standing Dorje Shugden - High resolution download-please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The forward on the book authored by the erudite Panchen Sonam Drakpa is highly unusual but good. The background on this great master is even more interesting. Read here- https://bit.ly/2EzT5Kx
1 month ago
The forward on the book authored by the erudite Panchen Sonam Drakpa is highly unusual but good. The background on this great master is even more interesting. Read here- https://bit.ly/2EzT5Kx
Kechara Saraswati Arts (KSA) offers a comprehensive statue and tsa tsa painting service. We are able to paint both the face and body, using traditional Tibetan techniques and materials.

KSA can transform a ‘bare’ or ‘raw’ object of art into a living masterpiece through a variety of painting techniques. There are several ‘finishes’ to choose from. Be it an ‘antique’ look, a fully-painted colourful finish or a simple ‘gold dusted look’, your imagination and heart’s wishes are fulfilled through KSA’s mastery and artistry in action.

Our team have learnt the techniques of traditional statue painting from the finest artists of India, Tibet and Nepal. Through months of intense training and practice, our talented artists have mastered the art of painting both peaceful and wrathful features.
1 month ago
Kechara Saraswati Arts (KSA) offers a comprehensive statue and tsa tsa painting service. We are able to paint both the face and body, using traditional Tibetan techniques and materials. KSA can transform a ‘bare’ or ‘raw’ object of art into a living masterpiece through a variety of painting techniques. There are several ‘finishes’ to choose from. Be it an ‘antique’ look, a fully-painted colourful finish or a simple ‘gold dusted look’, your imagination and heart’s wishes are fulfilled through KSA’s mastery and artistry in action. Our team have learnt the techniques of traditional statue painting from the finest artists of India, Tibet and Nepal. Through months of intense training and practice, our talented artists have mastered the art of painting both peaceful and wrathful features.
Unusual depiction of Lord Manjushri. I like it.
1 month ago
Unusual depiction of Lord Manjushri. I like it.
Stunning!!!
1 month ago
Stunning!!!
If we have eye problems, this is a good practice and it\'s simple- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=180488
1 month ago
If we have eye problems, this is a good practice and it's simple- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=180488
Many times in the morning my Oser girl will go sunbathe. She really enjoys it. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Many times in the morning my Oser girl will go sunbathe. She really enjoys it. Tsem Rinpoche
My Oser girl is very photogenic. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
My Oser girl is very photogenic. Tsem Rinpoche
Vintage stunning thangka of Lord Tsongkapa with many other enlightened beings.
1 month ago
Vintage stunning thangka of Lord Tsongkapa with many other enlightened beings.
Beautiful antique thangka of Sakya Pandita
1 month ago
Beautiful antique thangka of Sakya Pandita
The last Lama-Ruler of Mongolia was 8th Jebtsundamba Khutughtu. He did not have a good ending as Mongolia \'fell\'. Read about him- https://bit.ly/2UD83oa
1 month ago
The last Lama-Ruler of Mongolia was 8th Jebtsundamba Khutughtu. He did not have a good ending as Mongolia 'fell'. Read about him- https://bit.ly/2UD83oa
Last Queen of Mongolia-Very interesting what happened to her and tragic too- https://bit.ly/2GcfhfF
1 month ago
Last Queen of Mongolia-Very interesting what happened to her and tragic too- https://bit.ly/2GcfhfF
The famous and powerful state oracle of Mongolia- Interesting and must read- 
 https://bit.ly/2Py3QhI
1 month ago
The famous and powerful state oracle of Mongolia- Interesting and must read- https://bit.ly/2Py3QhI
1984 Los Angeles-Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination. Read more-  https://bit.ly/2C5OM7l
1 month ago
1984 Los Angeles-Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination. Read more- https://bit.ly/2C5OM7l
Nice to see Blog Chat going on
1 month ago
Nice to see Blog Chat going on
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

Videos On The Go

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  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    1 week ago
    SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    Tsem Rinpoche's dog Oser girl enjoying her snack in her play pen.
  • Cute!
    2 weeks ago
    Cute!
    Oser girl loves the balcony so much. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
  • Uncle Wong
    2 weeks 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!
    3 weeks ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
  • Cute baby owl found and rescued
    3 weeks ago
    Cute baby owl found and rescued
    We rescued a lost baby owl in Kechara Forest Retreat.
  • Nice cups from Kechara!!
    1 month ago
    Nice cups from Kechara!!
    Dorje Shugden people's lives matter!
  • Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    1 month 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).
  • His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche makes offering of khata to Dorje Shugden.
    1 month ago
    His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche makes offering of khata to Dorje Shugden.
    Trijang Rinpoche never gave up his devotion to Dorje Shugden no matter how much Tibetan government in exile pressured him to give up. He stayed loyal inspiring so many of us.
  • Very rare video of His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche the 10th, the all knowing and compassionate one. I pay deep respects to this attained being who has taken many rebirths since the time of Lord Buddha to be of benefit to sentient beings tirelessly. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 month ago
    Very rare video of His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche the 10th, the all knowing and compassionate one. I pay deep respects to this attained being who has taken many rebirths since the time of Lord Buddha to be of benefit to sentient beings tirelessly. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This bigfoot researcher gives good reasonings on bigfoot. Interesting short video.
    1 month ago
    This bigfoot researcher gives good reasonings on bigfoot. Interesting short video.
  • His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Shartse Monastery was one of the teachers of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Here in this beautiful video is Geshe Kelsang Gyatso showing his centre to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, then proceeding to sit down to receive teachings. For more information- https://bit.ly/2QNac1u
    1 month ago
    His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Shartse Monastery was one of the teachers of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Here in this beautiful video is Geshe Kelsang Gyatso showing his centre to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, then proceeding to sit down to receive teachings. For more information- https://bit.ly/2QNac1u
  • Tsem Rinpoche’s dog, Oser girl always sits on Rinpoche’s chair. When Rinpoche’s other dog, Dharma tries to get into the chair, he is chased away. Oser is the boss. She is possessive. Cute.
    2 months ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s dog, Oser girl always sits on Rinpoche’s chair. When Rinpoche’s other dog, Dharma tries to get into the chair, he is chased away. Oser is the boss. She is possessive. Cute.
  • Lama Yeshe talks about how to practice at the beginning and at the end of each day during teachings given in London during the Lamas’ first European teaching tour in 1975. Lama Yeshe was a brilliant teacher and I wanted to share this with everyone so his teachings can reach more people. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Lama Yeshe talks about how to practice at the beginning and at the end of each day during teachings given in London during the Lamas’ first European teaching tour in 1975. Lama Yeshe was a brilliant teacher and I wanted to share this with everyone so his teachings can reach more people. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Our beautiful Dorje Shugden shop in the busiest part of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Many tourists visit our store and this area.
    2 months ago
    Our beautiful Dorje Shugden shop in the busiest part of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Many tourists visit our store and this area.
  • Living off the grid in Australia
    2 months ago
    Living off the grid in Australia
    A Jill Redwood is a jack of all trades, Jill built her own house on her property and lives entirely off the grid with no mains power or town water, mobile reception or television. Living on around $80 a week, Jill has over sixty animals to keep her company and an abundant garden that out serves as an organic supermarket right at her doorstep. Her main expenses are animal feed and the rates on her property. Watch this incredible three minute video and be inspired to live differently.
  • Kyabje Dagom Choktrul Rinpoche offering gold on a 350 year-old Dorje Shugden statue in his chapel in Lhasa. This is how Tibetans show homage and pay respect to a holy image. This chapel and statue of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa dedicated to Dorje Shugden was built by the Great 5th Dalai Lama. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Kyabje Dagom Choktrul Rinpoche offering gold on a 350 year-old Dorje Shugden statue in his chapel in Lhasa. This is how Tibetans show homage and pay respect to a holy image. This chapel and statue of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa dedicated to Dorje Shugden was built by the Great 5th Dalai Lama. Tsem Rinpoche
  • My sweet little Oser girl is so photogenic and adorable. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    My sweet little Oser girl is so photogenic and adorable. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Heart Sutra sang by a monk for the modern crowd. Very interesting and beautiful. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Heart Sutra sang by a monk for the modern crowd. Very interesting and beautiful. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Submerging powerful mantra stones in water at Kechara Forest Retreat in Malaysia.
    2 months ago
    Submerging powerful mantra stones in water at Kechara Forest Retreat in Malaysia.
  • Wylfred explains in Chinese the benefits of mantra stones at Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia   |  黄明川以华语解释在马来西亚克切拉禅修林的玛尼堆(刻有心咒的石头)的利益
    2 months ago
    Wylfred explains in Chinese the benefits of mantra stones at Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia | 黄明川以华语解释在马来西亚克切拉禅修林的玛尼堆(刻有心咒的石头)的利益
  • My Oser girl and Dharma boy love the verandah where they can see the greens. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    My Oser girl and Dharma boy love the verandah where they can see the greens. Tsem Rinpoche
  • If there were more schools like this, then our kids would grow up with more caring awareness and kind emotions towards our environment and the people around them. They would grow up knowing that chasing materialism is not going to bring any happiness. I hope very much more schools like this would materialise. I hope in my future life I can attend a school like this. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    If there were more schools like this, then our kids would grow up with more caring awareness and kind emotions towards our environment and the people around them. They would grow up knowing that chasing materialism is not going to bring any happiness. I hope very much more schools like this would materialise. I hope in my future life I can attend a school like this. Tsem Rinpoche
  • My Oser girl and Dharma boy in their cosy little bedroom next to me sleeping away. Cute.
    3 months ago
    My Oser girl and Dharma boy in their cosy little bedroom next to me sleeping away. Cute.
  • It is incredible how smart Oser girl is. She can steal the treat away from Dharma boy and so casually. Wow. She is so smart. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    It is incredible how smart Oser girl is. She can steal the treat away from Dharma boy and so casually. Wow. She is so smart. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Kechara Forest Retreat Dogs. Dharma boy is tiny and trying to scare off big boy Johnny. Johnny is so patient and just ignores Dharma. They are both cute and both live in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    Kechara Forest Retreat Dogs. Dharma boy is tiny and trying to scare off big boy Johnny. Johnny is so patient and just ignores Dharma. They are both cute and both live in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Tsem Rinpoche
  • BREAKING EYEWITNESS FOOTAGE: Workers violently punched, kicked, cussed out, & left sheep to die on dozens of Scottish farms 💔 Sheep bled after rough shearing & were stitched up without painkillers.–From Peta2
    3 months ago
    BREAKING EYEWITNESS FOOTAGE: Workers violently punched, kicked, cussed out, & left sheep to die on dozens of Scottish farms 💔 Sheep bled after rough shearing & were stitched up without painkillers.–From Peta2
  • Super cute seal and so gentle. Must watch this video and realize we are all one. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    Super cute seal and so gentle. Must watch this video and realize we are all one. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Legendary Heart sings “Stairway to Heaven” in tribute to Led Zeppelin. Incredible tribute and rendition. Everyone is blown away. TR
    3 months ago
    Legendary Heart sings “Stairway to Heaven” in tribute to Led Zeppelin. Incredible tribute and rendition. Everyone is blown away. TR
  • In a low-income neighbourhood, this man is growing his own organic produce, and giving extras away for free to neighbours who can’t afford fresh ingredients from the store. Must watch!
    3 months ago
    In a low-income neighbourhood, this man is growing his own organic produce, and giving extras away for free to neighbours who can’t afford fresh ingredients from the store. Must watch!
  • Neat little video
    3 months ago
    Neat little video
  • This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    1 years 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.
  • Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
    1 years ago
    Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
  • BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
    1 years ago
    BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
  • Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
    1 years ago
    Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
  • Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
    1 years ago
    Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
  • Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    1 years ago
    This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    she received “one last visit from an old friend” 💔💔
  • Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
    1 years ago
    Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
  • Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
    1 years ago
    Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
  • Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant  Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
    1 years ago
    Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
  • Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
    1 years ago
    Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
  • Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    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.
    1 years 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!!
    1 years ago
    This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
  • SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    1 years 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.

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

View All Questions

CHAT PICTURES

Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Promoting Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Today Louise is guiding KISG to promote Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
13 hours ago
Today Louise is guiding KISG to promote Dorje Shugden at Kuil Siva Sri Subramaniam at Gopeng, Perak. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Thank you very much to this group of Sunway University students for assisting us with #food #surplus pick up & food surplus #distribution yesterday. If you wish to be a part of this activity, kindly WHATSAPP to 010-3333 260 for further inquiries and booking. Thank you in advance. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
yesterday
Thank you very much to this group of Sunway University students for assisting us with #food #surplus pick up & food surplus #distribution yesterday. If you wish to be a part of this activity, kindly WHATSAPP to 010-3333 260 for further inquiries and booking. Thank you in advance. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Breathing meditation is done before the start of the dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
yesterday
Breathing meditation is done before the start of the dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Nice picture of teacher Victoria with students during the 2017 Lantern Festival Charity dinner. Lin Mun KSDS
yesterday
Nice picture of teacher Victoria with students during the 2017 Lantern Festival Charity dinner. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback - KSDS Halloween 2017 held in Kechara Oasis. Lin Mun KSDS
yesterday
Throwback - KSDS Halloween 2017 held in Kechara Oasis. Lin Mun KSDS
So glad parents & students join the monthly animal liberation before the dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
yesterday
So glad parents & students join the monthly animal liberation before the dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Egg sandwich class- Students have opportunity I learn and make their own breakfast. Lin Mun KSDS
yesterday
Egg sandwich class- Students have opportunity I learn and make their own breakfast. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
“Food is the only thing that I have been longing for” - a single mother of two who currently living in Kuala Lumpur city. She mentioned that getting surplus food is not a matter of ignorance but a matter of not being able to afford “fresh” food. This is because when it comes to distributing salary, there are things such as house rental and utility fees that have to come before food. With welfare reforms, benefits being cut and sanctions, this marginalised community find themselves looking for a way to get through another day. #Kechara #foodbank #urbanpoor - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 days ago
“Food is the only thing that I have been longing for” - a single mother of two who currently living in Kuala Lumpur city. She mentioned that getting surplus food is not a matter of ignorance but a matter of not being able to afford “fresh” food. This is because when it comes to distributing salary, there are things such as house rental and utility fees that have to come before food. With welfare reforms, benefits being cut and sanctions, this marginalised community find themselves looking for a way to get through another day. #Kechara #foodbank #urbanpoor - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Big thanks to Chloe Chan, Tracy, and Mun Mun for helping to send monthly food provision to the urban poor families. With busy lives, it can be really hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. The right match can help you to reduce stress, find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. Giving to others can also help protect your mental and physical health. Be one of us by registering yourself at 010-3333260. ❤️ #Kechara #foodbank #urbanpoor - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 days ago
Big thanks to Chloe Chan, Tracy, and Mun Mun for helping to send monthly food provision to the urban poor families. With busy lives, it can be really hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. The right match can help you to reduce stress, find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. Giving to others can also help protect your mental and physical health. Be one of us by registering yourself at 010-3333260. ❤️ #Kechara #foodbank #urbanpoor - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 days ago
Young adults from Sunway College, experiencing awesome, planet saving food from Kechara Oasis, after recycling ~Wai Meng
7 days ago
Young adults from Sunway College, experiencing awesome, planet saving food from Kechara Oasis, after recycling ~Wai Meng
Andrea received Participation Awards from Pastor Gim Lee. Alice Tay, KSDS
1 week ago
Andrea received Participation Awards from Pastor Gim Lee. Alice Tay, KSDS
Teacher Julie is very patient to teach and guide the kids to do a good Nagomi Art. Alice Tay, KSDS
1 week ago
Teacher Julie is very patient to teach and guide the kids to do a good Nagomi Art. Alice Tay, KSDS
The young kids of KSDS have completed and showing their artworks happily. Alice Tay, KSDS
1 week ago
The young kids of KSDS have completed and showing their artworks happily. Alice Tay, KSDS
The champers learned to clean the place in Kechara Forest Retreat. Alice Tay, KSDS
1 week ago
The champers learned to clean the place in Kechara Forest Retreat. Alice Tay, KSDS
Taking refuge to the Three Jewels and prostrate to Guru and Buddha. Alice Tay, KSDS
1 week ago
Taking refuge to the Three Jewels and prostrate to Guru and Buddha. Alice Tay, KSDS
Wonderful the children sitting in full lotus position and recite mantra together with teacher Laura. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Wonderful the children sitting in full lotus position and recite mantra together with teacher Laura. Lin Mun KSDS
DIY toy done by students. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
DIY toy done by students. Lin Mun KSDS
Children enjoyed the art & craft session during dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Children enjoyed the art & craft session during dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
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Dorje Shugden
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