Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden

By | Jun 7, 2019 | Views: 118,888
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Dorje Shugden, the World Peace Protector, at Kechara Forest Retreat in Bentong, Malaysia. Click to enlarge.

The following article is a beginner’s introduction to Dorje Shugden and his practice. It will briefly cover a range of topics that will hopefully give you a quick and clear idea about Dorje Shugden and his practice. Overarching these topics will be a consideration of a few core ideas:

  1. Dorje Shugden’s role as a Dharma Protector
  2. Dorje Shugden’s lineage and origins
  3. Integrating Buddhist concepts with Dorje Shugden
  4. Practical preparations for Dorje Shugden’s practice
  5. An explanation of Dorje Shugden’s practice

It should be noted that this article will not go into great detail about all there is to know about Dorje Shugden nor many of the Buddhist concepts that will be included. Therefore, if you would like to learn more, there are many detailed articles on this blog that will be plenty of further reading material. Nonetheless, I hope that this article will be able to answer any beginner questions you might have had about Dorje Shugden and his practice.

 



Click to jump to the section you’re interested in

  1. Dorje Shugden’s role as a Dharma Protector
  2. Dorje Shugden’s lineage and origins
  3. Integrating Buddhist concepts with Dorje Shugden
  4. Practical preparations for Dorje Shugden’s practice
  5. An Explanation of Dorje Shugden’s Practice

 


Dorje Shugden’s role as a Dharma Protector

It is important to first establish what a Dharma Protector is before relating it to Dorje Shugden. There are many different Dharma Protectors in Tibetan Buddhism and Dorje Shugden is one of them.

A collage depicting some of Dharma protectors throughout all traditions of Tibetan Buddhism. Click on image to enlarge.

A collage depicting some of the Dharma Protectors throughout all traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.

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What is a Dharma Protector?

The term ‘Dharma Protector’ can be explained clearer by examining both parts separately before being compounded together.

  • Dharma – The word Dharma originates from Sanskrit meaning ‘decree or custom’. In a contemporary and religious context, Dharma can mean different things depending on the religion that defines it, though it can be generally defined as ‘the cosmic law and order of life in the universe’. However, in Buddhism, since the Buddha was able to understand that cosmic law and order, Dharma is considered the application of the Buddha’s teachings towards the goal of understanding that cosmic law and order.
  • Protector – In this context, a Protector is a being that guards and protects from obstacles that can manifest during the application of Dharma.

Therefore, when compounded, the term ‘Dharma Protector’ can be defined as a being who guards the practice of Buddha’s teachings from obstacles that can manifest during the application of Dharma. Notably a Dharma Protector guards not only the practice, but also the practitioners who apply the Buddha’s teachings in accordance to Dharma.

Dharma protector practice is prevalent throughout all traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and relied upon by great masters and lineage holders. Click on image to enlarge.

Dharma Protector practice is prevalent throughout all traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and is relied upon by great masters and lineage holders. Click on image to enlarge.

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Functions of a Dharma Protector and Obstacles

Dharma Protectors are highly recommended for spiritual practitioners as they are able to help us identify and overcome our obstacles. Obstacles on the spiritual path (such as sickness and negative emotions) can slow down or even halt our progress by disturbing our practice. Some obstacles are harder to identify than others due to their subjective nature. For instance, video games may be a big obstacle for me but a small obstacle for you.

In most cases, obstacles can appear seemingly out of nowhere and disturb us in the future. Since we cannot predict a large part of the future, this can negatively affect our lives and in many cases, it can shift the fundamental settings of our lives. Fortunately, Dharma Protectors can identify and remove our obstacles in both the present and future. Although this is not a magic resolution that will completely wipe out all of our problems, you might think of it as a substantial addition of positive energy within the pool of negative energy that our lives are submerged in.

Dharma Protectors are highly recommended for spiritual practitioners as they are able to help identify and overcome their obstacles.

Dharma Protectors are highly recommended for spiritual practitioners as they are able to help us identify and overcome our obstacles.

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Enlightened and Unenlightened Dharma Protectors

Broadly speaking, Dharma Protectors can be classified into two main categories – enlightened Dharma Protectors and unenlightened Dharma Protectors. An enlightened Dharma Protector has perfect wisdom and compassion whereas an unenlightened one does not. You might think of this in relation to a certain craft such as professional cooking. Enlightened Dharma Protectors are like master chefs who are the very best at what they do and how they do it. Unenlightened Dharma Protectors can be very good too but they often fall short compared to the masters.

In a similar fashion, enlightened Dharma Protectors are far more capable at assisting spiritual practitioners than unenlightened ones. The only issue is that enlightened Dharma Protectors also require far more merits to be invoked for their assistance. Fortunately, there exists enlightened Dharma Protectors who appear as unenlightened ones in a ‘worldly form’. This allows more practitioners to request their assistance without the need for as many merits as it would usually require. Drawing from the previous comparison, instead of learning from a master chef in the kitchen, it would be like taking online masterclasses where we could still learn from them in a less intense environment. Dorje Shugden is one of these enlightened Dharma Protectors that appears in a worldly form.

As an emanation of the Buddha of Wisdom, Manjushri, Dorje Shugden is definitely a fully enlightened Dharma Protector. Click on image to enlarge.

As an emanation of the Buddha of Wisdom, Manjushri, Dorje Shugden is definitely a fully enlightened Dharma Protector.

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How Dharma Protectors Deal with Our Obstacles

The cause for obstacles to manifest in our lives is due to our negative karma. Our negative karma is created from negative actions committed by us in the past, over many lifetimes. We cannot outrun our negative karma so obstacles naturally manifest in our lives, no matter where we go or how much we try to change our lives. A relatively easy way to distinguish the difference between positive and negative karma is by a consequentialist approach. If an outcome is positive, then we can generally say it was due to positive karma and if an outcome is negative, then we can say it was due to negative karma.

Dharma Protectors can assist our spiritual practice through our karma. One way is by activating some of our positive karma whilst suppressing some of our negative karma. Another way is by helping us to purify our negative karma. Although we can’t outrun our negative karma, Dharma Protectors can delay its manifestation and through its purification, our obstacles will be less severe.

Click on image to enlarge.

Click on image to enlarge.

There are a couple of factors that can affect the extent to which a Dharma Protector can help us effectively.

The first factor is the concentration of our positive and negative karma. Since a Dharma Protector cannot directly reduce our karma, they can only activate, suppress and help us purify the karma we already have. Therefore, if we have a low concentration of positive karma and a high concentration of negative karma, when obstacles come, a Dharma Protector might only be able to deal with a small portion of the obstacles. Inversely if we have a high concentration of positive karma and a low concentration of negative karma, a Dharma Protector would be able to deal with most (if not all) of our obstacles.

The second factor is the accumulation of merits by the spiritual practitioner. Merits can be considered a positive force like positive karma. However, the difference is where positive karma comes from positive actions, merits come from positive actions alongside the dedication of those actions towards attaining enlightenment and to benefit other sentient beings. Dharma Protectors can tap into this positive energy to assist with our spiritual practice.

In a way, merits act as a connection between us and our Dharma Protector. The more merits we accumulate, the stronger our connection and the sooner our Dharma Protector can help us deal with our obstacles.

The more merits we accumulate, the stronger our connection and the sooner our Dharma Protector can help deal with our obstacles.

The more merits we accumulate, the stronger our connection and the sooner our Dharma Protector can help us deal with our obstacles.

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Dorje Shugden’s Lineage and Origins

One of the highlighting factors of Dorje Shugden’s identity is that he is an enlightened Dharma Protector who arose from an incarnation lineage consisting of many great spiritual masters from India and Tibet. In terms of spiritual attainments, the incarnations of his lineage are often considered to be on par with the Dalai Lama and Panchen Lama lineages. This point of view is supported in the writings of some of the greatest Gelug lamas of the 20th century, including His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche and His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche.

Dorje Shugden lineage tree. Click on image to enlarge.

Dorje Shugden lineage tree. Click on image to enlarge.

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What is an Incarnation Lineage?

Every sentient being is subject to karma which perpetuates their existence within the six realms of Samsara. Since the forms within Samsara are not permanent, sentient beings are subject to death and rebirth. The new forms that are taken are known as incarnations and an incarnation lineage refers to a string of incarnations that arise from the same being. In that sense, all of us have incarnation lineages but most are not worth remembering because they were full of self-cherishing actions.

In contrast, beings who engage in tremendous acts of compassion throughout their lives are worth remembering as they inspire us to be like them, bringing happiness to our lives and eventually elevating ourselves from existing in Samsara. For example, the current Dalai Lama has 14 incarnations which means he has taken rebirth at least 14 times on Earth, to continue benefitting the many sentient beings who have the fortune of learning the Dharma from him. In a similar way, other great spiritual masters also have incarnation lineages and this includes Dorje Shugden.

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Dorje Shugden’s Incarnations

Some of the notable incarnations of Dorje Shugden. Click on image to enlarge.

Some of the notable incarnations of Dorje Shugden. Click on image to enlarge.

The following list includes many notable incarnations of Dorje Shugden (mostly chronological).

  1. Manjushri
  2. Magadha Sangmo
  3. Virupa (Birwapa)
  4. Thonmi Sambhota
  5. King Trisong Detsen
  6. Mahasiddha Naropa
  7. Pandita Akarmati
  8. Lotsawa Loden Sherab
  9. Khedrub Khyungpo Neljor
  10. Je Khutonpa Chenpo
  11. Ra Lotsawa Dorje Drak
  12. Shakyashri Bhadra
  13. Kunkhyen Choku Oser
  14. Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyaltsen
  15. Butön Rinchen Drub
  16. Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen
  17. Tsarchen Losal Gyatso
  18. Panchen Sonam Drakpa
  19. Sonam Yeshe Wangpo
  20. Ngawang Sonam Geleg Pelzang
  21. Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen

 

Manjushri – Buddha of Wisdom

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A thangka of Orange Manjushri, Four-Armed Manjushri, Manjushri Lion’s Roar, White Manjushri, Black Manjushri and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

Dorje Shugden is formally recognised to be an emanation of the Bodhisattva Manjushri. In Sanskrit, Manjushri means ‘Gentle Glory’ and he is also said to embody a Buddha’s transcendent wisdom. In some traditions (such as Gelug), he is considered to be a fully enlightened Buddha and can fulfil the role of a yidam. In China, Mount Wu Tai Shan is considered to be the earthly abode of Manjushri and is home to many monasteries in the modern day.

In his life, Manjushri was one of the eight Bodhisattva disciples of Buddha Shakyamuni. He often asked questions to Shakyamuni which created the cause for certain important teachings to be given. Buddha Shakyamuni also asked Manjushri to give teachings and would sometimes send students to receive teachings from Manjushri due to their greater affinity with him. This greater affinity meant that those teachings would be absorbed and learned faster by those selected students.

In terms of iconography, Manjushri is often depicted holding a flaming sword in his right hand, representing his ability to cut down our ignorance and ego which are the root causes of all our suffering. He is also often depicted holding a lotus which supports a scripture in his left hand. This scripture is the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras, representing his realisation of emptiness and thus his ability to guide practitioners away from their ignorant perceptions. Lastly, Manjushri is sometimes depicted riding a lion, which represents his fearless enlightened mind and his ability to tame the wild minds of other sentient beings.

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Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen (1350 – 1413)

Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

Another of Dorje Shugden’s incarnations is known as Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. ‘Duldzin’ is a special title that was given to him which means ‘Holder of the Vinaya’, and this represented the advanced level of spiritual practice he had achieved. Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen was also one of the eight closest disciples of Je Tsongkhapa, the Tibetan Buddhist lama who formed the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism. Je Tsongkhapa is famous for his teachings on Nagarjuna’s Middle View and he is considered to be an enlightened being by many highly attained spiritual masters.

Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen oversaw the construction of Gaden Monastery in Lhasa, Tibet. Gaden Monastery was the first large scale monastic institution for the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism. Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen offered the monastery to Je Tsongkhapa, with the intention that his aged guru would not have to travel vast distances to give teachings. It was at one of these teachings that Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen made the promise to become the protector of Nagarjuna’s Middle View, as taught by Je Tsongkhapa, in a later incarnation.

After Je Tsongkhapa passed away, Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen was requested to be the Gaden Tripa who is essentially the highest authority figure in the Gelug school. However, he humbly declined the request and suggested the position be taken by another of Je Tsongkhapa’s close students, Gyaltsab Je. Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen instead devoted the rest of his life to spreading and growing the teachings of his guru beyond Gaden Monastery.

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Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen (1619 – 1656)

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A thangka with Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen as the main figure. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen was the final spiritual master in Dorje Shugden’s incarnation lineage before he arose as a Dharma Protector. It is said that from a young age, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen could remember his previous lives clearly. This was taken as an indication that his previous life had achieved an advanced level of spiritual attainments. At the age of six, he was recognised as a tulku and given the name Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, by the Panchen Lama of that time, Lobsang Chokyi Gyaltsen.

Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen was a student of the Panchen Lama and was also recognised to be an incarnation of the late scholar Panchen Sonam Drakpa, whose texts are now used to educate monks in select monasteries. Furthermore, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen had notably inherited the Upper Chamber in Drepung Monastery from his previous incarnation. He also studied peacefully alongside His Holiness the 5th Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lobsang Gyatso, who lived in the Lower Chamber, and they were said to be equal in terms of spiritual attainments.

It is said that Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen was already teaching by the age of nine and as he aged, his spiritual attainments caused his fame to grow across Tibet, reaching as far as China and Mongolia. However, he was known to avoid fame and attention, and instead of teaching in the monastery, he was often found meditating alone in different caves across Tibet. People would try to find his meditation cave to make offerings and receive blessings but favouring his privacy, he would move on in hopes to meditate in solitude.

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Dorje Shugden’s Promise

The three incarnations that have been covered above are particularly relevant to Dorje Shugden’s origins. Manjushri demonstrates not only his direct studentship to Buddha Shakyamuni, but also the level of practice he achieved in that lifetime, providing him with a strong case of legitimacy from the start of his incarnation lineage. Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen and Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen are both key incarnations for Dorje Shugden to become a Dharma Protector. As was briefly mentioned, during his lifetime as Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, a promise was made for Dorje Shugden to become a Dharma Protector of Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings on Nagarjuna’s Middle View.

Click on image to enlarge

A thangka of Buddha Shakyamuni, Lama Tsongkhapa, Guru Rinpoche, Tsangpa Karpo, Nechung Pehar Gyalpo and Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

One day, when Je Tsongkhapa was giving a teaching, a white dove entered the room and began to circle around the teaching hall. As the dove circled around the hall, Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen was able to identify the dove as the Dharma Protector, Nechung. After the teaching had ended and all the other monks had left the hall, Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen stayed behind and asked Nechung why he had disrupted the teaching.

Nechung then transformed into a boy wearing white robes and told Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen that Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings would need a Dharma Protector in the future. Since Nechung was already tasked to protect Tibetan Buddhism in general, he could not assume the role himself. To this end, Nechung requested for Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen to arise as a Dharma Protector for Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings on Nagarjuna’s Middle View. Due to his unfaltering devotion to his guru, Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen accepted this request and made the promise to Nechung.

Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen reincarnated as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen a few lifetimes later. At a time when he was already a well renowned monk, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen spoke to Nechung through an oracle. Nechung asked him if he remembered his promise to become a Dharma Protector as the time had come. Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen said that he did not remember and so Nechung gave him some blessed rice to eat and asked him to meditate. After his meditation, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen remembered his promise but noted that he lacked the wrath necessary to become a Dharma Protector. Nechung responded with reassurance, saying that he would be able to help by creating the conditions for Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen to generate wrath.

In this monastic painting you can see Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen enthroned behind and many visiting him. Below is where he had a khata (white scarf) stuffed down his mouth by members of Tibetan Government during the time of 5th Dalai Lama. Click on image to enlarge.

In this monastic painting you can see Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen enthroned behind and many visiting him. Below is where he had a khata (white scarf) stuffed down his mouth by members of the Tibetan Government during the time of the 5th Dalai Lama. Click on image to enlarge.

Soon after, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen became even more famous than he had ever been before. From the poor to the nobles, people of different backgrounds travelled from all over Tibet and neighbouring countries to seek an audience and to make offerings to him. By the age of thirty-eight, his popularity seemed to eclipse that of the 5th Dalai Lama, which made a few of the Dalai Lama’s close attendants very unhappy. Clouded by overwhelming jealousy, they plotted to assassinate Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen. They attempted to kill him first with poison and then by blade, but because of his spiritual attainments and his lack of karma to be harmed, these methods were unsuccessful.

Consequently, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen realised that to generate the wrath necessary to become a Dharma Protector he would need to let himself be killed. To this end, he told his assailants that they had to suffocate him if they wanted to successfully kill him. Thus, they took a silk scarf (khata) and used it to suffocate him to death. As he was being suffocated, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen generated a small amount of wrathful energy. Together with his motivation to protect the teachings of Je Tsongkhapa, this allowed him to arise as a Dharma Protector, thus fulfilling the promise he had made to Nechung.

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Dorje Shugden Arises

Due to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s fame and monastic prestige, thousands of people which included disciples and spiritual masters from near and far, came to pay their respects at his funeral which was held in Lhasa, Tibet. However, when his funeral pyre was meant to be lit, it would not catch fire no matter how many attempts were made.

5th-DL-Lobsang-Gyatso3

An ancient thangka of H.H. the Fifth Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lobzang Gyatso who was a contemporary of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen and subsequently wrote an apology prayer in relation to the murder of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen. Image credit: himalayanart.org. Click to enlarge.

It was during this time that the 5th Dalai Lama, who had thought Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen passed away from illness, found out the truth about the assassination. With much remorse that he was not able to prevent what had happened, the 5th Dalai Lama composed an apology to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen in the form of a prayer.

The apologetic prayer was read out publicly at the funeral pyre by one of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s assistants. After the prayer was finished, the funeral pyre spontaneously lit.

Upon learning about what had happened, another of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s assistants vocalised strong disagreement with what his master had allowed to happen. The assistant used his monk robe to beat the funeral pyre out of frustration. This led to the rising of a large cloud of black smoke from the pyre. The large cloud of black smoke spread across the skies, covering Lhasa in the shape of a hand, which was considered by many to be the vengeful spirit of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen.

Following this event, there were many natural disasters around Lhasa including earthquakes, famines and droughts. Many people thought that these disasters were caused by Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s vengeful spirit. However, it was instead the manifestation of the negative karma that had been created from the assassination of a high lama. In an attempt to dispel all the negative energy that had manifested after Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s funeral, powerful rituals from highly reputable spiritual masters were requested. The rituals, also known as wrathful fire pujas, were intended to clear the ‘spirit’ that was thought to be the cause of all the negative energy. They attempted to clear the ‘spirit’ in the ritual fires several times but to no avail. It is said that during the fire pujas, many of the attained spiritual masters saw, through visions, emanations of different Buddhas in place of the ‘spirit’.

After many rituals had been conducted unsuccessfully, the 5th Dalai Lama finally concluded that the indestructible ‘spirit’, Dorje Shugden, was instead the rebirth of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen as a Dharma Protector. Consequently, the 5th Dalai Lama composed an official proclamation and prayer to recognise Dorje Shugden as a legitimate Dharma Protector.

From left to right: Panchen Sonam Drakpa, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen and Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. After Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen made the promise to arise as an uncommon Dharma Protector, he would go on to fulfil this promise in his future incarnation as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, who arose as the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

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Integrating Buddhist Concepts with Dorje Shugden

Visualisations of Buddha images are often an integral part of many Tibetan Buddhist practices. This section will cover the mandala and iconography of Dorje Shugden, both of which are depicted in images that lay the foundations of his practice.

The mandala of Dorje Shugden. Click on image to enlarge.

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Buddha Images

The term ‘Buddha image’ can seem broad, but it essentially refers to any visual depiction of a Buddha. Buddha images can come in different forms such as statues, drawings or digital pictures. They can also be stylistically influenced by the culture they have originated from. A Buddha image from one culture is not necessarily more accurate or superior than another as a Buddha can manifest in various ways. This allows a Buddha to attract more people, from different cultures, to the Dharma and thus expand the scope of benefit to more sentient beings.

Buddha images are one of the most important cornerstones to many Dharma Protector and yidam practices in Tibetan Buddhism. It is often encouraged to visualise a particular Buddha image at various points during a practice. If we visualise a Buddha image accurately and understand what the representations mean, our aspirations to develop the particular qualities of a Buddha are stronger reinforced. Consequently, a Dharma Protector or yidam practice will yield greater and swifter results with the visualisation of a relevant Buddha image than without.

Various beautiful depictions of Dorje Shugden. Click on image to enlarge.

Various beautiful depictions of Dorje Shugden.

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Dorje Shugden’s Mandala

The term ‘mandala’ can have different specific meanings based on the context it refers to. In the context where we offer a mandala to a Buddha, it would represent the whole universe which holds all the beautiful and desirable things in Samsara. In the context of Dorje Shugden, the mandala represents his enlightened qualities and the ways he is able to help sentient beings as an enlightened Dharma Protector.

Dorje Shugden’s mandala mainly consists of thirty-two individual deities who each represent his different enlightened qualities. Depictions of Dorje Shugden’s mandala can also include other notable figures such as the Dharma Protector Setrap, or Buddha Amitabha. Although Dorje Shugden’s mandala may be depicted in various ways, the thirty-two core deities ought to be present in any variation. This is because these individual deities are said to be emanated from Dorje Shugden’s enlightened mind, which means they embody Dorje Shugden (in a holistic sense).

A visual depiction of Dorje Shugden’s mandala as a celestial mansion. Click on image to enlarge.

A visual depiction of Dorje Shugden’s mandala as a celestial mansion.

Notes:

  1. Duldzin Dorje Shugden
  2. Vairochana Shugden (Shize)
  3. Ratna Shugden (Gyenze)
  4. Pema Shugden (Wangze)
  5. Karma Shugden (Trakze)
  6. The Nine Mothers
  7. The Eight Guiding Monks
  8. The Ten Youthful and Wrathful Attendants

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Dorje Shugden Rig Nga – The Five Aggregates

The term ‘Dorje Shugden Rig Nga’ can sometimes be translated as ‘Dorje Shugden’s Five Families’ or ‘Dorje Shugden’s Five Types’. This term refers to the five aggregate forms of Dorje Shugden that correspond to the five aggregates of sentient beings. The Buddha explained that every sentient being has these five aggregates and that they essentially enable us to experience our physical and non-physical environments.

The five aggregates are:

  1. Consciousness
  2. Form
  3. Feeling
  4. Discrimination
  5. Mental Composition
A summary of Dorje Shugden Rig Nga. Click on image to enlarge.

A summary of Dorje Shugden’s Five Families. Click on image to enlarge.

Generally speaking, the reason sentient beings exist in Samsara is because our five aggregates are impure with negative karma. The impurity fuels ignorant actions, which then create more negative karma that causes even more suffering. An enlightened being, like Dorje Shugden, has entirely purified their five aggregates and when we do their practices, we begin the process of purifying our own. In this way, Dorje Shugden’s five aggregate forms allow us to purify one specific aggregate much faster than the others. Therefore, based on our current situation, we can choose which form to practice as the karmic results of purifying a specific aggregate can be experienced much sooner than if we were to engage in general purification practices.

 

Duldzin Dorje Shugden – Aggregate of Consciousness

Duldzin Dorje Shugden – Aggregate of Consciousness. Click on image to enlarge.

Duldzin Dorje Shugden – Aggregate of Consciousness. Click on image to enlarge.

Duldzin Dorje Shugden is considered to be Dorje Shugden’s principal form because this was the first form he manifested as after arising as a Dharma Protector. He is named after his incarnation, Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, which was when he made the promise to become a Dharma Protector.

Duldzin Dorje Shugden appears similar to a human monk wearing monk robes, along with a golden domed hat which is a symbol of a travelling lama. He wields a curved sword in his right hand, and he holds a heart jewel, alongside a taming hook and a jewel spitting mongoose in his left hand. His mount is a fierce snow lion which is often associated as a mascot of Tibet.

Corresponding to the aggregate of consciousness, Duldzin Dorje Shugden is known for countering anger and hatred which arises from ignorance in the mind. Consequently, Duldzin Dorje Shugden specialises in bestowing practitioners with wisdom, which helps clear the outer and inner obstacles that plague their lives.

 

Vairochana Shugden – Shize – Aggregate of Form

Click to view the high resolution image and right click to save. This can be printed out for your altar.

Vairochana Shugden – Aggregate of Form. Click on image to enlarge.

Vairochana Shugden, also known as Shize, is considered to be Dorje Shugden’s pacifying form. This form is known to help practitioners overcome their obstacles by using peaceful methods and calming energy.

Shize appears as a white-skinned celestial prince who wears white, silk robes that are decorated with many bright colours. He also wears other ornate items such as a golden headpiece. He wields an arrow which is adorned with silks in five colours and a divination mirror in his right hand, and he holds a noose in his left hand. His mount is a gentle white elephant which is also dressed in a similar ornate fashion.

Corresponding to the aggregate of form, Shize is known for countering the negative karma that causes us to experience physical and mental ailments, and environmental obstacles. Consequently, Shize specialises in granting practitioners longer, happier and healthier lives, along with the ability to tranquilise violent energy in an area. In extreme cases, Shize is able to help practitioners avert natural disasters. Overall, these benefits increase the relatively short time practitioners have to accumulate merits, which helps them on their spiritual journey.

 

Ratna Shugden – Gyenze – Aggregate of Feeling

Ratna Shugden – Aggregate of Feeling. Click on image to enlarge.

Ratna Shugden, also known as Gyenze, is considered to be Dorje Shugden’s increasing form. This form is known to help practitioners overcome their obstacles by using enriching methods and the energies of increase.

Gyenze appears as a yellow-skinned celestial prince who wears yellow, silk robes that are decorated with many bright colours. Like Shize, he too wears other ornate items such as a golden headpiece. In his right hand, he holds a golden long-life vase which is brimming with nectar and carries a branch of a wish-granting tree. In his left hand, he holds a bowl filled with wish-fulfilling jewels and in some depictions, he can be seen holding a victory banner alongside a vajra hook. His mount is a semi-fierce, golden (palomino) horse which is dressed in a similar ornate fashion.

Corresponding to the aggregate of feeling, Gyenze is known for countering the negative karma that both causes us to perceive unpleasant sensations and obstructs our opportunities to perceive pleasant sensations. Consequently, Gyenze specialises in granting practitioners increased inner and outer wealth. This is done by reducing their attachment to experiencing pleasant sensations and averting unpleasant sensations. These attachments create the causes for particular types of suffering, such as how miserliness leads to poverty. Overall, these benefits help practitioners by relieving much of their wealth related burdens along their spiritual path.

 

Pema Shugden – Wangze – Aggregate of Discrimination

Pema Shugden – Aggregate of Discrimination. Click on image to enlarge.

Pema Shugden, also known as Wangze, is considered to be Dorje Shugden’s controlling form. This form is known to help practitioners overcome their obstacles by using influencing methods and subjugating energy.

Wangze appears as a blood-red-skinned celestial prince with a semi-wrathful smile. He wears red, silk robes that are decorated with flowers, and like Shize and Gyenze, he too wears a golden headpiece and other ornate accessories. He holds a taming vajra hook in his right hand and a jewelled noose in his left hand. His mount is a fierce (eastern style) turquoise dragon which is often seen as a symbol of power and strength.

Corresponding to the aggregate of discrimination, Wangze is known for countering the negative karma that causes us to habitually perceive the world with a closed or judgemental mind. Consequently, Wangze specialises in helping practitioners control and discipline their own minds so they may perceive the world in a more objective manner. With the reduction of misperceptions, the suffering of emotions like anger and depression can also be reduced. Furthermore, through one’s speech and actions, others can be influenced and charmed by the display of disciplined control. Overall, these benefits help practitioners influence others positively and turn negative situations into positive ones.

 

Karma Shugden – Trakze – Aggregate of Mental Composition

Karma Shugden – Aggregate of Mental Composition. Click on image to enlarge.

Karma Shugden, also known as Trakze, is considered to be Dorje Shugden’s most wrathful form. This form is often called upon against both powerful delusions and very potent negative energy such as black magic.

Trakze appears as a dark-red-skinned prince with an extremely wrathful expression. He is lightly dressed in black, silk garments and wears a crown on his head which is accompanied by fierce flames. He wields a large sword in his right hand, and he holds a bleeding heart in his left hand with a taming hook sometimes depicted alongside it. His mount is a giant eagle-like bird known as a garuda and it is often depicted with a snake between its claws and beak.

Corresponding to the aggregate of mental composition, Trakze is known for countering the negative karma that causes us to experience potent negative energy from physical and non-physical sources. Consequently, Trakze specialises in granting practitioners protection against very harmful obstacles that may cause devastating physical or mental harm. As Dorje Shugden’s most wrathful form, Trakze is able to help practitioners overcome the largest of obstacles with speed and power. Overall, these benefits relieve practitioners from the worry of obstacles that may knock them off the spiritual path, allowing them to stay focused and consistent in their spiritual practice.

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Dorje Shugden’s Entourage

The remaining core deities in Dorje Shugden’s mandala are considered to be his entourage. As individuals, they do not encompass the same level of specialisation when compared to the five aggregate forms of Dorje Shugden. However, as groups, they still bestow practitioners with specific benefits to help them in their spiritual practice. It is important to remember that the deities of Dorje Shugden’s entourage are emanations of his enlightened mind. This means that they are enlightened beings who can be relied upon to assist practitioners with their limitless foresight and power.

It is important to remember that the deities of Dorje Shugden’s entourage are emanations of his enlightened mind. Click on image to enlarge.

The deities of Dorje Shugden’s entourage are emanations of his enlightened mind. Click on image to enlarge or click here to invite home.

 

The Nine Mothers

The Nine Mothers of Dorje Shugden’s entourage appear as beautiful celestial maidens who are dressed in beautiful silks. They wear and hold a range of items that represent the elements, and objects of desire. The Nine Mothers represent Dorje Shugden’s ability to help practitioners protect their five senses and develop control over the four elements of their body. These benefits are considered particularly helpful for practitioners who engage in advanced tantric meditation.

The Nine Mothers of Dorje Shugden’s entourage are considered particularly helpful for practitioners who engage in advance tantric meditation.

The Nine Mothers of Dorje Shugden’s entourage are considered particularly helpful for practitioners who engage in advanced tantric meditation.

 

The Eight Guiding Monks

The Eight Guiding Monks of Dorje Shugden’s entourage appear as fully ordained monks who are dressed in saffron coloured robes. They wear a variety of hats which have different meanings such as the golden dome hat, which represents travelling, and the yellow hat, which represents the Gelug school of Je Tsongkhapa. They also hold various monastic items such as Dharma texts, monk staves and other ritual implements.

The Eight Guiding Monks represent Dorje Shugden’s ability to help practitioners by clearing obstacles and creating the conditions for them to hold their vows and spiritual commitments well. In a wider sense, these benefits will be a positive influence in the growth of Dharma. People are often more inclined to listen and learn from practitioners who speak and act with integrity.

The Eight Guiding Monks represent Dorje Shugden’s ability to help practitioners by clearing obstacles and creating the conditions for them to hold their vows and spiritual commitments well

The Eight Guiding Monks represent Dorje Shugden’s ability to help practitioners by clearing obstacles and creating the conditions for them to hold their vows and spiritual commitments well.

 

The Ten Youthful and Wrathful Attendants

The Ten Youthful and Wrathful Attendants of Dorje Shugden’s entourage appear as warriors who come from a range of different countries such as Tibet, Mongolia and China. Some of the attendants have peaceful expressions and some have wrathful expressions. They wield a variety of different weapons which represent their readiness to protect practitioners by clearing their inner and outer obstacles. This particularly applies to the obstacles that draw practitioners away from promised commitments to their gurus.

The Ten Youthful and Wrathful Attendants of Dorje Shugden’s entourage wield a variety of different weapons which represent their readiness to protect practitioners by clearing their inner and outer obstacles.

The Ten Youthful and Wrathful Attendants of Dorje Shugden’s entourage wield a variety of different weapons which represent their readiness to protect practitioners by clearing their inner and outer obstacles.

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Dorje Shugden’s Ministers

Dorje Shugden also has ministers, within his entourage, who assist in clearing obstacles for practitioners. They may sometimes be depicted within an image of Dorje Shugden’s mandala. Although they are not part of the thirty-two core deities of Dorje Shugden’s mandala, they are still individually considered powerful Dharma Protectors.

 

Kache Marpo

Kache Marpo

Kache Marpo. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

The primary minister of Dorje Shugden is known as Kache Marpo. He is considered to be an enlightened Dharma Protector with his own set of prayers, but after Dorje Shugden arose he offered to become Dorje Shugden’s minister. This demonstrated Kache Marpo’s humility and understanding that Dorje Shugden’s practice would be very effective in the relatively near future.

Kache Marpo appears as a very wrathful warrior with dark red skin, three eyes and protruding fangs with which he gnaws his lower lip. He wears armour on his body, wields a sharp, red lance in his right hand and holds a noose in his left hand. He wears a helmet which is highly decorated with victory banners made of silks in nine colours. His mount is a fierce horse which is adorned with an ornate saddle and accessories.

 

Namkar Barzin

Namkar Barzin. Click on image to enlarge.

Namkar Barzin. Click to enlarge or click here for more high resolution Buddha images.

Another minister of Dorje Shugden is known as Namkar Barzin. He is considered to be an unenlightened Dharma Protector with his own prayer and mantra. Namkar Barzin was originally a Mongolian monk who turned into a vengeful spirit after his untimely death. However, he was soon pacified into a Dharma Protector by H.E. Domo Geshe Rinpoche in the 1920s. He was then offered to Dorje Shugden and was accepted into Dorje Shugden’s entourage as a minister.

Namkar Barzin appears as a very wrathful monk with dark red skin, three eyes and protruding fangs with which he gnaws his lower lip. He wears monk robes on his body, wields a sword in his right hand and in his left hand, he holds a cup which is made from a skull that is filled with blood. His mount is a mythical animal of East Asian origin called a qilin, which is often depicted as a four-legged creature with hooves, antlers and scaled skin.

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Dorje Shugden’s Iconography

In the context of Buddha images, iconography generally refers to the various symbols in a Buddha image which visually represent a certain quality of the depicted Buddha. Breaking down Dorje Shugden’s iconography, we will see that individually, each symbol reflects a certain enlightened quality. However, in a holistic sense, Dorje Shugden’s iconography represents a complete pathway to enlightenment. Therefore, meditating on Dorje Shugden’s form (with an accurate understanding of his iconography) will generate merits that energises a practitioner’s spiritual journey. The following examination will be on the iconography of the principal form, Duldzin Dorje Shugden.

Click on image to enlarge.

Click on image to enlarge.

Notes:

  1. Wisdom Fire
  2. Golden Domed Hat
  3. Wisdom Sword
  4. Third Eye
  5. Taming Hook
  6. Heart Jewel
  7. Jewel Spitting Mongoose
  8. Monk Robes
  9. Tiger Skin Boots
  10. Snow Lion
  11. The Enemy
  12. Lotus and Sun Cushion

 

Wisdom Fire

There is a grand fire that emerges from within Dorje Shugden’s body and surrounds him in a blazing radiance. The fire represents Dorje Shugden’s achievement of Bodhicitta, which means his body, speech and mind act with perfect compassion for the sake of every sentient being.

Furthermore, the fire also represents Dorje Shugden’s ability to burn away the obstacles and ignorance that causes suffering to a sentient being. Practitioners who develop a closer connection to Dorje Shugden will find their obstacles can be cleared much faster, in the same way fire burns more effectively at a closer range.

 

Golden Domed Hat

taming hook

Dorje Shugden wears the golden domed hat of a traveling lama. Click to enlarge.

In Tibetan Buddhism, when a lama travels, they traditionally wear a domed hat for protection. The domed hat of Dorje Shugden represents that he is always on the move and ready to grant protection to sentient beings who request his help. The hat also represents Dorje Shugden’s promise to protect Nagarjuna’s Middle View as taught by Je Tsongkhapa.

 

Wisdom Sword

Dorje Shugden wields a sword in his right hand, which is visually similar to the Buddha of Wisdom, Manjushri. The sword represents his ability to cut down the ignorance which causes sentient beings to generate negative karma and thus, suffer. Consequently, Dorje Shugden grants wisdom to practitioners which not only dispels ignorance, but in the absence of ignorance, more wisdom can arise.

The design of the sword, which is relatively short and curved, represents two things. Firstly, the shortness represents Dorje Shugden’s willingness to closely protect practitioners in their fight against ignorance and negative karma. Secondly, the curvature represents Dorje Shugden’s supreme effectiveness as a Dharma Protector since the curved sword is able to inflict more damage than a straight sword.

Another close up of the magnificent Dorje Shugden.

Dorje Shugden wields a sword in his right hand, representing his ability to cut down the ignorance which causes sentient beings to generate negative karma and thus, suffer.

 

Third Eye

Alongside a regular pair of eyes, Dorje Shugden has a third eye that appears on his forehead. This third eye represents Dorje Shugden’s perfect clairvoyance, which is the ability to perceive the past, present and future, all at once and limitlessly.

In another sense, the third eye also represents Dorje Shugden’s ability to understand the true nature of reality with a perception that pierces ignorance and delusions. This is a very important attribute for a Dharma Protector, as Dorje Shugden is able to act in a way which helps sentient beings in the short and long-term.

 

Taming Hook

On one hand, the taming hook, which is supported by Dorje Shugden’s left arm, represents his ability to control a practitioner’s negative mind. Dorje Shugden is able to subdue the wild and negative mind that propels negative speech and actions, which causes sentient beings to generate negative karma.

On the other hand, the taming hook also represents Dorje Shugden’s ability to generate the conducive conditions for a practitioner to progress smoothly on their spiritual path. Such conditions may come in the form of material wealth, healthy interpersonal relationships or even meeting a qualified spiritual teacher.

 

Heart Jewel

Dorje Shugden wears the golden domed hat of a traveling lama. Click to enlarge.

Dorje Shugden holds a taming hook and heart jewel with his left hand. Click to enlarge.

Dorje Shugden holds a heart jewel in his left hand which can represent different things. One representation is that the heart belongs to ‘the enemy’, which is essentially a sentient being’s ignorance. In this way, Dorje Shugden is seen as a Dharma Protector who arrests and destroys the heart of a practitioner’s suffering which is ignorance.

The heart jewel also represents a sentient being’s innate potential to achieve enlightenment as well as their wish to fulfil that potential. In this way, Dorje Shugden appears to be supporting this potential and protecting the practitioners who aim to achieve the spiritual goal of enlightenment.

 

Jewel-Spitting Mongoose

H.E. Tsem Rinpoche with the world’s largest Dorje Shugden statue in Kechara Forest Retreat. Click to enlarge.

H.E. Tsem Rinpoche with the world’s largest Dorje Shugden statue in Kechara Forest Retreat. Click to enlarge.

The jewel-spitting mongoose, which sits on Dorje Shugden’s left arm, is a traditional symbol of wealth and generosity. In this case, wealth refers to both material and spiritual wealth. The jewels from this mongoose are also known as wish-fulfilling jewels, as opposed to worldly jewels. These wish-fulfilling jewels arise from Dorje Shugden’s enlightened mind that can only assist and benefit us. This is a distinct difference to a worldly jewel, which often creates suffering as the subject of attachment and desire for sentient beings.

Material wealth is evaluated differently for everyone and can come in many forms such as increased money and health, harmonious interpersonal relationships and favourable workplace connections. However, regardless of the form it may come in, without the worry of insufficient material wealth, practitioners are better able to focus on their spiritual practice. Similarly, everyone has different spiritual needs; some may be extremely jealous, and others may be uncontrollably angry. Spiritual wealth may come in the form of reducing such negative emotions, or it may come in the form of granting spiritual attainments as a result of consistent practice.

Therefore, the jewel-spitting mongoose represents Dorje Shugden’s ability to provide practitioners with material and spiritual wealth, in generous amounts, in order to create a smooth environment for spiritual practice.

 

Monk Robes

Dorje Shugden appears as a fully ordained monk who is dressed in three layers of monk robes. His appearance as a monk represents many of his previous lives who were well renowned, highly attained spiritual masters. Particularly, in both the lives where he made the promise to become a Dharma Protector, and arose as a Dharma Protector, he was a monk who was respected at the highest level.

The three layers of monk robes represent him holding three sets of Buddhist vows. This shows Dorje Shugden’s immovable self-discipline, which is an aspiration that any spiritual practitioner should aim towards.

 

Tiger Skin Boots

Dorje Shugden wears a pair of tiger skin boots which represents his close affinity to sentient beings with worldly desires. This means the merits required for a sentient being to receive Dorje Shugden’s assistance is much lower, as compared with other Dharma Protectors who do not manifest in such a worldly form. Furthermore, this means that the results of requesting Dorje Shugden’s assistance can generally be experienced much swifter than other Dharma Protectors.

 

Snow Lion

Dorje Shugden’s mount, a snow lion, is a celestial animal of Tibet. The snow lion is traditionally described as fierce and powerful, and here it is a representation of Dorje Shugden’s fearless mind. Fear arises when there is ignorance, thus Dorje Shugden’s fearless mind is a demonstration of his ability to clear ignorance and bestow wisdom in the minds of other sentient beings.

In another sense, the snow lion also represents Dorje Shugden’s ability to tame such a wild and ferocious mind. Furthermore, the wrath of the snow lion represents both the swiftness with which Dorje Shugden can assist sentient beings and his power to overcome the many large obstacles along a spiritual path.

 

The Enemy

In some depictions, Dorje Shugden’s snow lion can be seen trampling on a human. This human reflects our own human form and it represents the three poisons of the mind; ignorance, attachment, and hatred. These three poisons are the true enemy which causes sentient beings to experience suffering in Samsara. Therefore, Dorje Shugden and his snow lion trampling on the enemy represents his ability to conquer and crush the three poisons of the mind. Furthermore, the enemy is often being pressed into a sun cushion, which symbolises the elimination of the enemy through the understanding of emptiness.

 

Lotus and Sun Cushion

Dorje Shugden rides on a mythical snow lion which stands atop a lotus, representing the purity of the enlightened mind. Click on image to enlarge.

Dorje Shugden rides on a mythical snow lion which stands atop a lotus, representing the purity of the enlightened mind. Click on image to enlarge.

The lotus is a prevalent symbol in Buddhism and can be found in many Buddha images. The lotus flower grows in muddy water but rises above the surface and appears bright and colourful. Therefore, the lotus represents the purity of an enlightened mind, which is untainted by the causes of suffering within Samsara.

Furthermore, there are different interpretations of what a lotus can specifically mean, based on the colour of the flower. However, in Dorje Shugden’s iconography, it represents his enlightened mind and that his actions are motivated by a pure compassion for other sentient beings.

Finally, the sun cushion represents Dorje Shugden’s complete and total understanding of emptiness. This demonstrates his ability to guide practitioners towards that same level of understanding emptiness, which in turn becomes the cause for eliminating the three poisons of the mind.

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Practical Preparations for Dorje Shugden’s Practice

Before beginning Dorje Shugden’s practice, it would be helpful to understand how and why we (as Buddhists) are encouraged to set up an altar. In this section we will go through the basics of altars in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition along with some practical advice. That will include the core components of a Tibetan Buddhist altar and I will give you some ideas for recommended offerings. Particularly in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, altars are helpful for enhancing the benefits of any practices we engage in.

Altars can vary greatly in terms of how elaborate or creative they are. Our personal shrines should be in accordance with our lineage, and reflect the deities we rely on and the practices we do. Click on image to enlarge.

Altars can vary greatly in terms of how elaborate or creative they are. Our personal shrines should be in accordance with our lineage, and reflect the deities we rely on and the practices we do. Click on image to enlarge.

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What is an Altar?

An altar is a specific area where offerings are made towards a particular subject. This is why altars can be found in most prominent religions as well as smaller cults. Even in Tibetan Buddhism, altars can be set up to unenlightened beings, such as to the unenlightened Dharma Protector, Namkar Barzin. However, in this section we will focus on how to set up a Tibetan Buddhist altar to Dorje Shugden, an enlightened being.

An altar can be set up in many places such as an office, bedroom or living room. Out of respect and practicality, we are encouraged to avoid setting up an altar at the foot of a bed, in the bathroom or any loud/busy places such as the kitchen. Offerings on the altar can include items such as water, incense, fresh fruits and flowers. This marks our intent to treat the subject of the altar as if they were an honoured guest.

There is not a minimum or maximum size restriction for an altar but it is generally encouraged to have one as large and enriched as we reasonably can. Overall, the more important trait of a Tibetan Buddhist altar is that it should be easily accessible, so it should not be set up too high nor too low.

 A Buddhist altar is used by the practitioner to purify negative karma, and to generate merits which will create the causes for us to have conducive conditions in order to further our spiritual practice. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddhist altar is used by the practitioner to purify negative karma, and to generate merits which will create the causes for us to have conducive conditions in order to further our spiritual practice.

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Functions of a Tibetan Buddhist Altar

In Tibetan Buddhism, an altar generally provides a designated space for someone to engage in various spiritual activities such as meditation, preparing offerings and reciting prayers. Through these practices, an altar acts as a platform for practitioners to purify negative karma and generate merits to energise their spiritual path.

An altar ought to have a Buddha image on it, and the image should preferably be of the particular Buddha we are praying to. For example, if we are praying to Dorje Shugden, we should have at least one image of Dorje Shugden on our altars. This is because an altar can also serve as a visual aid for practitioners during meditation and prayer recitation.

An elaborate traditional Tibetan altar. Click on image to enlarge.

An elaborate traditional Tibetan altar. Click on image to enlarge.

Although we can set up altars to unenlightened beings, we are generally encouraged to set up altars to enlightened beings separately. This is to remind ourselves of the ultimate Buddhist goal, that is to achieve enlightenment. It is important to note that we are not praying to the enlightened being itself, but to their attainment of enlightened qualities. Therefore, an altar reminds practitioners of their spiritual aspiration to develop the qualities of an enlightened being.

Overall, altars exist to benefit practitioners rather than the subject of the altar. Our altars should not be mistaken as a platform to bribe an enlightened being to fulfil our self-centred wishes. Since enlightened beings do not have any attachment or desire, attempting to bribe them will never work. Instead, they will only grant our wishes if it helps us on our spiritual journey. Therefore, altars benefit people who engage in their spiritual practices genuinely, with an aspiration to positively transform their minds in order to benefit other sentient beings.

Having an altar creates a stronger connection with the enlightened beings to generate incredible transformation in our lives.

Having an altar creates a stronger connection with the enlightened beings to generate incredible transformation in our lives. Click on image to download high resolution file or click here for more images.

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Core Components of an Altar

In Tibetan Buddhism, we are encouraged to have the three core components on our altar.

  • Buddha’s body
  • Buddha’s speech
  • Buddha’s mind

One of the overall functions of an altar is to assist the purification of negative karma and generation of merits. Our body, speech and mind are the means through which we collect negative (and positive) karma as well as generate merits. Therefore, the three core components on an altar act as a general reminder for practitioners to focus and control their body, speech and mind. Furthermore, when we prepare offerings for a Buddha’s body, speech and mind, we generate the merits for ourselves to achieve those enlightened qualities in the future.

 

Buddha Body

A Buddha’s body is typically represented by a Buddha image such as a statue. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s body is typically represented by a Buddha image such as a statue. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s body is typically represented by a Buddha image which can come in many various forms such as statues, digital pictures or paintings. Buddha images are often used to represent a Buddha’s body as they display the many enlightened qualities that practitioners should aspire to achieve. It is often positioned in the centre of an altar as this symbolises that our wider spiritual practice originates from the Buddha. The Buddha’s body also provides practitioners with a helpful visual reference during their meditation.

 

Buddha Speech

A Buddha’s speech is typically represented by a Dharma text such as a prayer book. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s speech is typically represented by a Dharma text such as a prayer book. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s speech is typically represented by a Dharma text, which can come in various forms such as an educational book or a prayer booklet. We are encouraged to place a Dharma text on the left side of our altars as it represents all of the Buddha’s teachings in written form. Dharma texts are highly valued as they provide a pathway for practitioners to receive the Buddha’s teachings, whilst being relatively accessible. Any Dharma text can be used regardless of its difficulty or size, as long as the text contains some essence of the Buddha’s teachings. Furthermore, we can use texts of different languages as it does not matter if we are able or unable to understand its contents.

 

Buddha Mind

A Buddha’s mind is typically represented by a stupa. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s mind is typically represented by a stupa. Click on image to enlarge.

A Buddha’s mind is typically represented by a stupa, which is a dome shaped structure which often contains holy relics and is often associated with the activity of circumambulation. In Tibetan Buddhism, there are different types of stupas but for our altar, we can have a small stupa of any kind. Stupas act as a reminder that every sentient being has the potential to attain an enlightened mind, which is free from ignorance and perfectly compassionate. Therefore, a stupa is placed on the right side of the altar to represent a practitioner’s sincere intention to control and develop their mind towards the goal of enlightenment.

 

Guru Image (Optional Component)

It is worth noting that alongside the three core components, we are highly encouraged to have an image of our guru on our altar. This is to remind us that we were able to receive the Buddha’s precious teachings because our guru took the time and effort to teach us. Spiritual development is much slower and inconsistent if we only learn from Dharma texts, without a guru to clarify our misunderstandings and malpractices. However, this is only an optional component so that practitioners who may not have a guru can still set up a complete altar.

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Yidam and Dharma Protector Altars

An altar for Dharma Protector, in this case, Karma Shugden or Trakze. Click on image to enlarge.

An altar for a Dharma Protector, in this case Karma Shugden or Trakze. Click on image to enlarge.

There are generally two types of altars within Tibetan Buddhism, the yidam and Dharma Protector altars. Generally, the main difference between a yidam and Dharma Protector altar, is the Buddha image used to represent the Buddha’s body. As the names suggest, a yidam altar uses a Buddha image of an enlightened meditational deity such as Manjushri. A Dharma Protector altar uses an image of a Dharma Protector such as Dorje Shugden.

Traditionally, in Tibetan Buddhist temples, yidam and Dharma Protector altars are typically set up in different rooms or buildings. This is because some Dharma Protectors are not allowed to be seen or practiced without initiation from a guru. Initiation is sometimes required as Dharma Protectors can have extreme visual depictions such as severed heads or naked bodies, which may confuse and distress people who are unfamiliar with those representational meanings.

If we are unable to set up separate altars for a yidam and Dharma Protector, we can place an image of our Dharma Protector on the right side of the altar, alongside the stupa, or on a level below the main platform of the altar. Notably, whilst the image of our yidam remains in the middle of the altar, any extra Buddha images that are not of Dharma Protectors can be placed on the left side of the altar, alongside the Dharma text.

Where there are space constraints, practitioners may incorporate an image of their Dharma Protector (in this case, Dorje Shugden) into their main shrine at home, by placing the image of Dorje Shugden on the right side of the shrine. Click on image to enlarge.

Where there are space constraints, practitioners may incorporate an image of their Dharma Protector (in this case, Dorje Shugden) into their main shrine at home, by placing the image of Dorje Shugden on the right side of the shrine. Click on image to enlarge.

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Offerings for Beginners

The following sections will consist of brief introductions to types of offerings that are both easy for beginners to prepare and are relevant to Dorje Shugden’s practice. We are generally encouraged to prepare as many offerings of the highest quality, but we should also be pragmatic given our varying circumstances. For example, if we are only able to offer one bowl of water, then we should do that as it would be better than leaving our altar bare. The practice of preparing these offerings is a means to augment an altar’s function of purifying negative karma and generating merits. For example, assuming gold is more valuable than wood, we ought to prepare offerings in golden bowls instead of wooden ones. This would help purify the negative karma that causes miserliness and when we develop generosity, we will generate merits to help alleviate financial obstacles in the future.

We are also encouraged to prepare and replace the recommended offerings on a consistent basis (such as daily or weekly). This is to develop greater stability in our mind as we engage in spiritual practice over time. Disposing of any offerings should be done so respectfully, for example, we should not pour water offerings down the toilet. Furthermore, any offering bowls that are not being used should be cleaned thoroughly and turned over or stowed away. It is considered to be inauspicious to leave empty offering bowls on our altar, as this would be like giving empty plates to our dinner guests.

Buddhists are encouraged to set out offerings on the altar, to generate merits by making offerings to the Three Jewels. Click on image to enlarge.

Buddhists are encouraged to set out offerings on the altar, to generate merits by making offerings to the Three Jewels. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Water Offerings

A type of offering commonly found on a Tibetan Buddhist altar is the water offering. Water offerings are a simple yet powerful way to purify negative karma and generate merits as water is relatively accessible. They are most often prepared with clear water to symbolise the qualities of an enlightened mind. However, if we would like to (as part of decorating the offerings), we may also lightly infuse the water with flowers or spices such as chrysanthemum petals or saffron. Furthermore, offering water on our altar creates the causes for practitioners to receive several different benefits.

  1. Crystal Clarity – Development of a clear and alert mind
  2. Coolness – Development of pure and disciplined morals
  3. Sweetness – Provisions of pleasurable food and drink in future lives
  4. Lightness – Rebirth in a strong and wholesome physical body
  5. Softness – Development of a calm and gentle mind
  6. Free from Impurity – Powerful purification of negative karma
  7. Soothes the Stomach – Development of good health, without illnesses
  8. Clears the Throat – Development of powerful and attractive speech

It is recommended that water offerings are prepared in bowls that are filled up to the rim and placed very slightly apart from each other in a straight line. The offering bowls are traditionally prepared specifically from left to right on the altar. Inversely, the offering bowls are traditionally stowed away when they are not in use, from right to left. If we physically do not have enough bowls in which to offer water, we may first prepare the water offering in the bowls as normal, but then empty them and repeat the process until we are satisfied with the total count.

Water offerings are the most fundamental offerings we can make to the Three Jewels. Click on image to enlarge.

Water offerings are the most fundamental offerings we can make to the Three Jewels. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Incense Offerings

Incense offerings are often prepared as burnable incense sticks that are made from a mixture of ingredients, such as fragrant leaves and the wood of various trees, butter, sugar, and other medicinal herbs. Overall, the smell of our incense offering should be one we find pleasant and soothing, as they function to clear the environment of foul odours. Therefore, we should try to ensure that the ingredients are pure and uncontaminated by pollutants such as garlic and onion.

Incense offerings symbolise the quality of having pure morals and help to create the causes for practitioners to develop the strong discipline required to keep those morals. In a secular sense, we will be better able to keep our promises to our family, friends and colleagues. In a spiritual sense, we will be better able to hold any spiritual vows we have made with our guru, which may include completing our assignments or putting in consistent effort to transform our body, speech and mind.

The offering of incense reminds us to hold our vows purely and creates the causes for us to do so. Click on image to enlarge.

The offering of incense reminds us to hold our vows purely and creates the causes for us to do so. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Light Offerings

Traditionally, light offerings are prepared in the form of butterlamps and candles. However, in contemporary times, we are also encouraged to offer artificial lights as an alternative. Electric candles or lamps are recommended as they are often relatively accessible, fit comfortably on an altar and reflect the traditional light offerings. However, other types of lights can be offered, such as small LED lights or spotlights.

Light offerings have several general benefits for practitioners such as creating the causes to have a healthy body, sustainable wealth, and the development of clairvoyance. However, there is often a particular emphasis on how light offerings create the causes for practitioners to have a clear mind that is able to develop great wisdom and understanding of the Dharma.

As light dispels the darkness and allows us to see things that would otherwise be hidden, light offerings symbolise the dispelling of ignorance which can be equated to darkness that clouds our minds. Ignorance is considered to be the primary cause for sentient beings to remain unaware of the potential enlightened qualities that they may develop. Therefore, light offerings are a direct and powerful counter to the primary cause of our suffering.

Making light offerings is a very good method for cutting through obstacles. Click on image to enlarge.

Making light offerings is a very good method for cutting through obstacles. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Serkym (Black Tea Offering)

Serkym offerings are commonly associated with Dharma Protector practices as they are requests for swift assistance against our obstacles. The word ‘ser’ means golden and the word ‘kym’ means beverage, and thus ‘serkym’ is usually translated as ‘golden drink’. Tea is often offered as the serkym due to its natural colour, and therefore serkym offerings are often referred to as ‘black tea offerings’. Furthermore, we are encouraged to prepare the serkym as hot as possible because heat represents energy for the Dharma Protector to assist practitioners swiftly. We can also prepare serkym offerings with substitute substances that we commonly regard as drinks, such as milk or carbonated drinks like cola.

Serkym offerings are often prepared in a two-tiered vessel which consists of a longer part on top and a wider part as a base. We are encouraged to use a serkym set made of traditional materials such as brass, copper or silver, but if that is not feasible, we are able to use substitute materials such as glass, crystal or wood. To prepare a serkym offering, the upper part should be placed on the lower part and the serkym substance should be poured into the upper vessel until it overflows into the lower vessel. The overflowing serkym represents an abundance of merits being generated to fuel our spiritual practice. Lastly, serkym offerings can be incrementally poured alongside a prayer recitation, but it can also be fully poured prior to the prayer recitation.

Serkym is a very powerful extended offering to the Dharma Protector requesting swift assistance. Click on image to enlarge.

Serkym is a very powerful extended offering to the Dharma Protector requesting swift assistance. Click on image to enlarge.

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Cleaning and Maintaining an Altar

We should remember a general rule of thumb when disposing of or preparing our offerings; that is, we are preparing symbolic offerings for an honoured guest. However, since the honoured guest is an enlightened being who is willing and able to assist us with our secular and spiritual problems, we should try our best to be generous with our preparations. This is to develop a closer karmic connection to the enlightened beings on our altar so that we will be able to swiftly receive their assistance. Therefore, to the best of our ability, we should ensure that our offerings are prepared in vessels of good condition, are replaced regularly and we should not leave empty vessels out on the altar. Furthermore, we should regularly dust and wipe down the surface and core components of our altar with a clean cloth.

As with most things we use in our lives, the physical benefits of cleaning and maintaining our altar is very important. However, there are also spiritual benefits to be gained from practicing this. It is said that by cleaning and maintaining the altar, or any area that houses the Buddha’s body, speech and mind, we are purifying negative karma and generating merits. Particularly, we are purifying the negative karma that causes our minds to be unclear and unfocused. Therefore, by cleaning and maintaining our altar, we are creating the causes for our minds to be clear and focused. This can help us succeed on a secular level, and with the support of merits on a spiritual level, we will be better able to understand and practice the Dharma.

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An Explanation of Dorje Shugden’s Practice

Due to the relatively fast paced nature of contemporary life and the many distractions that challenge us, we may find it difficult to set aside time dedicated solely for preparations and practice. Fortunately, Dorje Shugden’s practice can be done at different amounts and levels. For the purpose of this beginner’s introduction to the practice, this section will provide a quick and easy version of the practice, focusing on the principal form, Duldzin Dorje Shugden. This practice can be done without the need for any initiation from a guru. It can be done by anyone of any religion or ethnic background.

 

The Preliminaries and Dharma Activities

The preliminaries are a brief set of recitations that traditionally set a pure and positive motivation before engaging in any Dharma activity. Overall, Dharma activities not only help to purify our negative karma and generate merits, but they also shift our predominantly egocentric perspectives into more altruistic ones. This means they can come in many various forms as different individuals require different types of Dharma activities. For example, in some contexts, a Dharma activity may be volunteering at a soup kitchen or at an animal shelter. Through our thoughts and actions, Dharma activities often demonstrate gratitude, love and kindness to those who are close to us, as well as to those who are not. Engaging in Dorje Shugden’s practice can be considered a Dharma activity as it creates the causes to swiftly develop and attain the enlightened body, speech and mind, which is ultimately the best way to benefit other sentient beings.

 

Taking Refuge

In Tibetan Buddhism, the term ‘taking refuge’ refers to being protected against Samsara. In other words, taking refuge is a method to counter the fundamental causes of our suffering. We are encouraged to take refuge in the ‘Three Jewels’, which consists of the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. In this context, the Buddha refers to the historical Shakyamuni Buddha; the Dharma refers to the Buddha’s teachings; and the Sangha refers to the practitioners who have chosen to live by the Pratimoksha vows as taught by the Buddha. The Three Jewels, as objects of refuge, are able to protect us from Samsara as they stem from an enlightened being. Thus when we engage in Dharma activities before them, we will generate merits with our body, speech and mind.

(Recommended recitation – 3 times)

I take refuge in the Guru
I take refuge in the Buddha
I take refuge in the Dharma
I take refuge in the Sangha

 

Generating Bodhicitta

Bodhicitta is generated next as it is the purest level of motivation that we can engage any Dharma activity with. Bodhicitta describes the body, speech and mind acting with perfect compassion for the sake of all sentient beings. Generating Bodhicitta will augment the benefits we receive from our engagement with any Dharma activity. Similarly, this is reflected in how information is often learned faster and recalled easier if we are interested in a certain topic. Therefore, when we generate Bodhicitta here, we are not expected to be perfect like a Buddha or Bodhisattva, but we are instead creating the causes to attain their level of compassion and motivation to benefit all sentient beings.

(Recommended recitation – 3 times)

In the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha
Until enlightened, I take refuge.
Through giving and other perfections,
To aid all, may I become a Buddha!

 

The Four Immeasurables

The ‘Four Immeasurables’ refers to meditative procedures which consist of the immeasurable wish, prayer, thought of responsibility, and request. The meditation of the Four Immeasurables is based on the idea that every sentient being is karmically connected with each other and ultimately wish to be happy. However, since ultimate happiness cannot be achieved through a self-cherishing mind, the Four Immeasurables helps to develop the mind with love, compassion, appreciative joy, and equanimity towards every sentient being. Therefore, the Four Immeasurables generally help to establish a mind that is averse to self-cherishing, which strengthens the Bodhicitta motivation.

May every sentient being have happiness and its causes!
May every sentient being be free of suffering and its causes!
May every sentient being never be parted from happiness, free of suffering!
May every sentient being abide in equanimity free from bias, attachment and aversion!

 

A Daily Request for Wealth, Peace and Protection

The following prayer was composed by His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche, for practitioners who have many secular responsibilities and who do not have enough time for the more extensive versions of Dorje Shugden’s practice.

In the heavens there are myriad manifestations of the divine. All those manifestations specifically show us different aspects of divinity1 in order to be of benefit to all living beings. All the rupakaya forms of the divine have compassion, skilful means and wisdom.2 We invoke upon them whether we are happy, sad, down, lost, fulfilled, confused, empty, and during the whole range of emotions we constantly experience due to an untrained mind.

Understanding our nature, Great Wisdom Being Dorje Shugden, therefore all the more so, please hold us close to your bosom as an only child to a parent.

Though the manifestations of the divine need no offerings and gifts from us, we offer you supreme Manjushri Dorje Shugden, a libation of tea, incense and mantras, in order to ask you to bless us, to be a part of our lives, to abide in our dwellings, and to give us signs, omens and portents of both good and bad. When the negative arises, quell them immediately. Please increase the positive for my weary and worn mind as I lay my hopes in you.

When difficulties, problems and confusion arise, we ask you, who is but the culmination of all that is powerful, holy and omniscient to bless myself, family, loved ones, environment and even my pets. May I see wisdom, find hope, and be at peace.

I request you, O Divine Lord Dorje Shugden, who wears a round dome hat and the three saffron robes of a fully ordained monk, who wields a sword of liberty, justice and wisdom, and clutches a wish-fulfilling jewel, who rides on a supreme lion of subjugation of all that is negative, to fulfil my wishes. I understand my wishes may not be the best, so I surrender to your wisdom for the outcome though it may not be what I have in mind. Please bless myself and everyone, that we may enter into the supreme city of liberation.

Great Lord Dorje Shugden, I request you sincerely from my heart to be a part of my life, bless my home, and grant me wisdom, solace and comfort, that I might be of service to others without agenda, and that I may focus onto others and not be fixated on myself, creating more problems for all that I hold dear.

Bless me to become kinder, wiser, more compassionate, tolerant and very forgiving to all those who hurt and love me. In order to become close to you, Dorje Shugden, we must surrender the banal. We must abandon fixed views, projections and rigidity. Lastly, in my final moment, when I leave this plane of existence, only the positive actions I have done will matter, as everything and everyone will be left behind. Let me realise this and act upon this now! At this crucial moment, please may I have a vision of yourself, the powerful and merciful Dorje Shugden, to take me to where I may course in the sky3, to continue my journey of spiritual waxing.

I offer you saffron-coloured tea and my faith to fulfil my prayers and gain common attainments.4 By reciting your mantra5, may healing, peace, love, long life, protection and perfect view of emptiness arise.

Mantra to Generate Fulfilment, Peace and Wisdom

OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA
(Recommended recitation – at least 108 times)

I dedicate this supreme heartfelt prayer to the all-knowing Celestial and Supreme Protector Dorje Shugden, that I may quickly become a being of light, compassion, love and enlightenment.

Footnotes:
1.‘Aspects of divinity’ here refers to the qualities of an enlightened being such as bodhicitta and wisdom.
2. Rupakaya refers to the various emanations of an enlightened being, such as a guru.
3.‘The sky’ here can refer to future lives that are spiritually rich and/or the pure land of an enlightened being, such as Tushita Heaven.
4.Common attainments can include mental tranquillity, and supernatural abilities such as being able to influence the weather, subjugating harmful spirits, and clairvoyance. In contrast, higher attainments can include bodhicitta and perfect view of emptiness as they are much more essential for transcending Samsara.
5.This is also known as Duldzin Dorje Shugden’s mantra for general activities.

 

Simple visualisation

If we wish to engage in a relevant but relatively simple visualisation during the mantra recitation, we can first visualise Duldzin Dorje Shugden in front of us. Then we should visualise radiant white lights coming out from his heart and shining upon us. When this happens, we should think that our negative karma and obstacles are being purified and cleared by him. Furthermore, we can visualise Duldzin Dorje Shugden helping us to achieve our secular goals, healing and protecting us from diseases, and creating the causes for us to develop his enlightened qualities.

Alternatively, instead of ourselves, we may also visualise these radiant white lights shining upon someone else, such as our close relatives. When this happens, in a similar fashion, we should think that their negative karma and obstacles are being purified and cleared by Duldzin Dorje Shugden, and that they will be positively energised by the other aforementioned benefits of this visualisation.

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

 

Serkym

The function of a serkym offering is to request the Dharma Protector to provide swift assistance for our obstacles. For this reason, serkym offerings are highly recommended for practitioners who are engaging in or are about to engage in large Dharma projects where many obstacles can arise. As a brief reminder, serkym offerings are traditionally prepared with hot tea, and although it is generally recommended to serve the serkym as hot as possible, we are allowed to use other substitute drinks such as milk or cola.

Regardless of how we choose to prepare the serkym offering, we may also engage in a visualisation alongside the serkym prayer. If we wish to do so, we should visualise the serkym as something akin to a vast and expanding ocean of celestial nectar. The ocean of celestial nectar represents all the beautiful and desirable things in the universe that we find pleasurable, especially through our five main senses. We may also first visualise our current problems and obstacles being swiftly destroyed and cleared, followed by visualising that any future obstacles will be prevented by Dorje Shugden’s supreme power as a Dharma Protector.

On a closing note, if we do not have time to engage in the entire serkym prayer, with the visualisation, we may simply recite the main verse (third verse) at least seven times. Conversely, if we have the time, and we currently require swift assistance with any type of obstacle, we may recite the main verse many more times to generate an abundance of positive energy.

HUM!
O Gurus who rain down accumulations of excellence fulfilling our own and others’ purposes,
And Yidams who bestow all ordinary and supreme attainments,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

O all hosts of heroes and dakinis of the three places,
And ocean of powerful, oath-bound Dharma Protectors,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

(This is the main verse and we are recommended to recite this verse at least 7 times)
And especially, supreme, supramundane Dharmapala,
Forcefully powerful, strict, and swift Dorje Shugden,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

O five families who openly bestow
Infinite activities of peace, increase, power, and wrath,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

O nine beautiful consorts, eight guiding monks,
And ten fierce and youthful guardians, and so on,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

HRI
Especially, principal guardian of the Conquerors’ Teachings,
Setrap Chen along with entourage to you
This golden drink replete with all one could wish is offered; (Pour serkym)
Never waver in your protection!

O extremely fierce Kache Marpo, the strict attendant,
Executioner of those with degenerated samaya,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss, (Pour serkym)
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

Vow-breakers’ heart-blood purified like gold,
This drink of fully boiling serkym,
I offer to Namkar Barzin and entourage (Pour serkym)
Accepting, accomplish the yogi’s intended purpose!

(Pour the remaining serkym throughout this verse)
As well as the inconceivable emanations and their emanations,
Attendant deities and demons who shake the three thousand worlds,
Through offering you this ambrosial drink which bestows bliss,
May you, having partaken, swiftly and spontaneously accomplish our wishes!

Thus, by the force of this offering and exhortation,
May you grant your activity throughout the six time periods
And, without wavering, always protect me
And care for me like a father for his son!

Hosts of wrathful attendants, as well,
Remember your sworn oaths of promise to Lord Duldzin
And accomplish swiftly now, without distraction,
Whatever activities I have requested!

 

Dedication

Dedication is an important part of concluding any Dharma activity in Tibetan Buddhism. As I previously mentioned, during our engagement with Dharma activities we generate merits that will help us along our spiritual path, even if our current goal may not necessarily be enlightenment. However, when we dedicate these merits towards attaining enlightenment, we are essentially channelling that positive energy into our minds where it will crystallise and benefit us until we are enlightened. This means the merits we have generated will not be extinguished by the negative karma that we will inevitably create with our body, speech and mind.

(Recommended recitation – 1 time)

Precious supreme Bodhi mind,
May it arise where unborn,
And where born, never decline,
But increase forever more!

Precious view of Emptiness
May it arise where unborn,
And where born, never decline,
But increase forever more!

May whatever virtue that I have gathered here,
Bring benefit to every being and the Dharma,
And may it make Venerable Losang Drakpa’s
Essence teachings specially shine forever!

In all lives may I never be parted
From perfect Gurus and may I enjoy the glory of Dharma.
By perfecting the qualities of the paths and stages,
May I quickly attain the state of Vajradhara!

Through this virtue may I swiftly
Attain the Guru Deva’s state,
And place each and every being,
Without exception, in that state!

May all obstacles be pacified
And all good conditions be complete
For the fully pure Dharma system
Of Dharma King, Tsongkhapa, to flourish!

Because of the combined two accumulations
Of others and I in the three times,
May the Teachings of the Conqueror Tsongkhapa
Losang Drakpa, brightly blaze forever!

May all be auspicious, day and night!
May auspiciousness increase both day and night
Like the sun rising to its highest in the heavens!
Three Jewels of Refuge, please bless us!
Three Jewels of Refuge, please bestow attainments!
May there be auspiciousness of the Three Jewels!

May the Venerable Guru’s life be completely stable,
May pure deeds spread to the ten directions,
And may the lamp of Lama Tsongkhapa’s Teachings
Always remain, dispelling the darkness of the ignorance of beings!

 

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Wei Tan
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About Wei Tan

Born and raised in England. Graduate of BSc (Hons) Philosophy with Psychology. Tendency towards philosophy and analytical thinking. Enjoys learning about things that can be applied in daily life. Also enjoys video games, spiritual people, and hamsters. Respects hard work, consistency, generosity, compassion, and self-improvement. Supports Dorje Shugden and logical thinking. Rejects blind faith, illogical propositions, reluctance to learn, and self-centred attention seeking. Reasonably self-aware. Dislikes his hypocritical tendencies. Is a work in progress.
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16 Responses to Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden

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  1. Samfoonheei on Feb 13, 2020 at 3:42 pm

    A well details information and explanation all about Dorje Shugden, for beginners. It would be wonderful for beginners to learn and practice with this brief introductions to setting an altar and to which the different types of offerings to offer. This post will definitely help those who are new .All I can say is very informative indeed.
    Dorje Shugden’s lineage and origins came from an incarnation lineage consisting of many great spiritual masters. From Manjushri until Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen before arosing as Dharma Protector more than 350 years ago. It’s a very beneficial practice which will help us effectively.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Wei tan for this wonderful sharing.

  2. Jeremy Tan on Dec 22, 2019 at 1:38 pm

    Thank you for the article, it was very helpful and now I can perform my DS prayers properly.

    • Pastor Elena Khong Jean Ai on Jan 27, 2020 at 12:37 pm

      Hi Jeremy,

      Very happy to hear that you found the article helpful! Do leave a comment or message the Pastors if you have any further questions, and we will be happy to help.

      Thank you,
      Pastor Jean Ai

  3. kay on Dec 9, 2019 at 1:19 pm

    Dharma Protectors are highly recommended for spiritual practitioners as they are able to help us identify and overcome our obstacles. Enlightened Dharma Protectors are far more capable at assisting spiritual practitioners than unenlightened ones. Dorje Shugden is one of these enlightened Dharma Protectors that appears in a worldly form. Dorje Shugden is the incarnation of Lord Manjushri and many high lamas. He was full of compassion towards sentient beings. This article had showed us how Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen arises as dharma protector Dorje Shugden. We also can get the clearly explanation about Dorje Shudgen in this article.
    The cause for obstacles to manifest in our lives is due to our negative karma. Although we can’t outrun our negative karma, Dharma Protectors can delay its manifestation and through its purification, our obstacles will be less severe.
    From here, we get to know Dorje Shudgen was a powerful dharma protector, he is extremely effective in clearing obstacles. When we start practicing Dorje Shugden, it can benefits us, and we can generated merits, and reduce our negative karma. So, let start practice Dorje Shugden.Thanks to Wei Tan and Rinpoche for sharing this article. It was very suitable and helpful to the beginner who interested to practice Dorje Shugden.

  4. m.priya on Aug 30, 2019 at 3:50 pm

    thank you Rinpoche, the explanation on dharma protectors is excellentFor Daily blessings, chant this sacred powerful mantra: Om Benza Wiki Bitana Soha . Dorje Shugden has helped me swiftly recover when I was in the hospital.

  5. Pastor Albert on Jul 22, 2019 at 5:20 pm

    A very precise and detail information about Dorje Shugden, whatever you need to know for starting your practice of Dorje Shugden, from the previous incarnation of Dorje Shugden, to his emanations, entourages, offerings and its benefits, daily sadhana and the meaning.

    Thank you Wei for writing this article so that people who are interested with Dorje Shugden can come here to read and get all information they want in order to understand Dorje Shugden better.

  6. nicholas on Jul 16, 2019 at 1:58 pm

    At this degenerate time, we believe that we have accumulated negative karma that causes us to be so attached to our delusion in samsara. This scenario can also be seen in our daily life where we through so much negative experienced. All these are the manifestation from the ripening of our negative karma. As time goes, we will collect more and more negative karma as the world changes to the way to attract us to be more non-spiritual and self-centered.

    How can we get out from this samsara trap?
    Realize that we are not happy with the attachment and delusion that we had because it will only bring us down further. Then we would like to stop it by making a change in our action by learning the dharma and engage in Protector practice, in this case, will be Dorje Shugden practice.

    Dorje Shugden able to help by holding hour negative karma from ripening to let us have enough time to collect more merits. This is important because of Dorje Shugden only able to help us by providing a conducive condition for our spiritual path through the merits we accumulated. If we don’t have enough merits that will be too bad.

    Never wait for another day to do dharma and collect merits as we don’t know what will happen to us in the next second. We don’t want one day someone tells us that sorry, nothing can be done because you have out of merits.

  7. Wylfred Ng on Jul 10, 2019 at 12:02 am

    谢谢 Wei 和仁波切编写和上载这篇关于多杰雄登的文章。

    这篇文章非常适合多杰雄登初学者。 从多杰雄登前世、来历、造像学、眷属、修持法等等都有非常详细的讲解。 也非常适合想更了解多杰雄登的人。

    而且要在网上找到所有最完整多杰雄登资料的地方就是这个博客。

    谢谢

  8. So Kin Hoe (KISG) on Jul 3, 2019 at 2:42 pm

    Thank you Wei Tan and Rinpoche for writing and sharing this article that describes the practice of Dorje Shugden with important points to assist us during our recitation of the prayer text and the mantra of Dorje Shugden. This article precisely explains on how Dorje Shugden can help us if we meet with any obstacles when practicing Dharma during our current degenerate age with so much of outer and inner distractions.

    After learning and contemplating on this article, we need to start the practice of Dorje Shugden now in order to clear our obstacles ahead and accumulate merits with the motivation of compassion or Bodhicitta towards others, so that we can continue to progress smoothly towards higher Dharma practice or else, we will remain to stay stagnant in samsara that will continuously bring us more sufferings and pain due to our ignorance and untamed mind. The worldly happiness that we perceive currently are merely short term relief that will never be brought forward to the next lifetime because only our good karma, negative karma or merits accumulated in this life will determine our next rebirth.

    According to Dorje Shugden’s incarnations which started from Lord Manjushri until Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen before Dorje Shugden arose as Dharma Protector 350 years ago, we are given the opportunity to tap into the wisdom, energies and blessings from many highly attained masters through the practice of Dorje Shugden. Further, the entourage of Dorje Shugden which consists of Kache Marpo as chief minister of Dorje Shugde and many other deities emanated from Dorje Shugden’s enlightened mind, able to help practitioners in many aspects with unlimited power if the practitioners encounter with difficulties, obstacles and other unforeseen happening that could block or totally stop our Dharma practice.

    In conclusion, practicing Dorje Shugden will always benefit us in this life and many future lifetimes as Dorje Shugden is an enlightened Dharma Protector who has the ability and capability to see through our past, present and future lives. May the ban of Dorje Shugden will be lifted as soon as possible for the growth of Dharma and for the benefit of many sentient beings.

    Thank you with folded hands,
    kin hoe

  9. Samfoonheei on Jun 15, 2019 at 1:05 pm

    Wonderful post for beginner’s introduction to Dorje Shugden. Many will get to understand , learn and practice it. Very details for any beginners , for most to understand the many types of dharma protectors, the benefits and the history. May more and more people get to understand Dorje Shugden’s practice better.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Wei Tan for this wonderful sharing.

  10. Yee Yin on Jun 13, 2019 at 12:51 am

    This article is very useful, especially for beginners. Many people who have heard of Dorje Shugden or search for Dorje Shugden on the internet, they will probably see he is a very controversial protector. But thanks to Rinpoche and the blog team, many information on Dorje Shugden is made available for people to do a fact check before making a conclusion.

    Dorje Shugden is an enlightened protector, this I have no doubt at all. Many high lamas are Dorje Shugden practitioners and after they enter into clear light, they come back again in perfect human form. For examples, Trijang Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Lama Yeshe, Pabongka Rinpoche, etc. Besides, a high caliber lama such as Trijang Rinpoche had written a text about Dorje Shugden called “Music Delighting Ocean of Protectors”, in which, he mentioned Dorje Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri.

    Dorje Shugden is a fairly new protector who arose 350 years ago. Therefore, karmically, he is closer to us and more effective to help us clear our obstacles compared to other protectors. Since he is an enlightened protector, it is safe for us to propitiate him as he has the ability to see what lies ahead of us. He will create a condition as such that we are able to walk on the right path.

  11. Mark R.A. Steeves on Jun 10, 2019 at 12:49 am

    Many thanks to you Wei Tan for this blog offering of Beginners Introduction to Dorje Shugden. Most complete, featuring the various aspects of Dorje Shugden Protector Practice, essential to understanding the plentiful benefits in relevance to the many ways Dorje Shugden Practice helps all sentient beings with discernment and without discrimination. Knowing the iconography, history, method and manifestations of Dorje Shugden, through your offering here, brings wisdom and knowledge to the would be practitioner and provides a platform for others to better comprehend themselves, this samsara and the true nature of mind when free from attachment, ignorance and desire. Hence to better come to know a mind inseparable from the Buddha mind of compassion. Rejoice for having the blog to refer with thanks of course to the blog team, Kechara Pastors, the many sponsors, contributors and His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche for sharing with us all, conceiving such opportunity to promote positive change with a selfless dedication to aid others now, and working to ensure the future is one which embraces peace for all. Sarva Mangalam. May you be happy, may you be well!

  12. Lum Kok Luen on Jun 8, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for this wonderful article which is very insightful, concise and simple enough for the beginners to DS practice. Even for me, it is a good summary of all the key practices, history, incarnation that we need to have a good foundation to start off His practice.

    Humbly yours
    Lum Kok Luen

  13. Tsa Tsa Ong on Jun 8, 2019 at 2:30 pm

    A very nice and neat sharing on Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden. It’s very simple and clear to read and understand. Thank you very much Rinpoche and Wei Tan for this wonderful sharing. Do keep up with your great work Wei Tan!????

  14. Tenzin Jamkar on Jun 8, 2019 at 7:51 am

    Excellent article encompassing a wide range of topics within Dharma practice. It is important for one to read and understand what and who Dorje Shugden is and his function within Dharma practice. As Buddha said to a renowned person Upali: “Make a proper investigation first.”Proper investigation is good for a well-known person like yourself.” Hence, before anyone begins to follow or shuns the practice, one has to investigate and understand first.

  15. Ummamageswari on Jun 7, 2019 at 1:58 pm

    Thank you for this article. There is a lot of information in this article. I just know that there is Dharma protector in Buddhism but I’ve no idea how many of them was. Dorje Shugden is actually one of the six Dharma protectors. Dorje Shugden as a Dharma protector able to help us identify any obstacle in the future.

    There are actually two categories of Dharma protectors, enlightened and unenlightened Dharma protectors. Dharma Protectors able to help us to deal with the obstacle which was caused by our negative action in past life. At the same time, i can get to know what each symbol of Dorje Shugden’s means. This article is really helpful. Thank you.

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  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 12. 2021 04:12 PM
    Looking at those very unique house been built simply stunning. Creatively with nature indeed , salute to those architecture who has such a wild ideas and innovations building such an incredibly unique houses in nature. No easy though but everything is possible.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/into-the-wild.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 12. 2021 04:11 PM
    Truly stunning Kuanyin Statue also know as”Goddess of Mercy” Statue designed by Portuguese architect . Very serene with the huge golden statue seemingly floating over the sea at high tide. One of the underrated landmarks in Macau. It is believed that when this statue is built, Macau has become more prosperous, peaceful and economically better. Many locals and tourist visited this beautiful Statue and it’s a popular spot where they will walk along the sea watching sunset. Merely by looking at this Statue is a blessing. Those beautiful pictures tells us all.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/kuan-yin-of-macau-city.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 12. 2021 04:07 PM
    Beautiful Yonghe Temple in Beijing, China known to some locals as the‘Palace of Peace and Harmony Lama Temple’ has three world-record masterpieces. This temple is a temple and monastery of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism built during the reign of Emperor Kang Xi (1694). Very impressive buildings and a great insight into Chinese Buddhist temples with 300 years of history . The building and artwork of the temple is a combination of Han Chinese and Tibetan styles.
    Looking at the restoration and conservation work of the Lama Tsongkhapa Statue in Yong He Gong is not easy after all. Thanks to Liu Yuming,77, restoration masters of China’s Cultural Relics. He had done a good job helping to preserve those rare cultural relics left in China. It is indeed a uphill task that needs a lot of patience , skill, delicate , and love . Interesting read even though it an old post. Would love to see this master piece of Lama Tsongkhapa Statue one day .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/an-age-of-restoration.html
  • sarassitham
    Monday, Apr 12. 2021 01:47 PM
    Sometimes a single image can speak much louder than words. It’s very painful to see the abused and made to suffer of a Monkey and Child.

    It is really sad to discover how many animals sacrificed for fulfilling our taste buds. and not only sacrificing their life.

    Why don’t we try to eat more vegetables instead of eating more animals. Vegetables are healthy too, you know! And do you also know that being vegetarian or vegan will not only make you become healthier, it will also make you feel more energetic.
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Apr 10. 2021 03:59 PM
    A legendary figure of Buddhism in Buryatia was Lubsan Samdan Tsydenov, charismatic Buddhist master and visionary and national hero, who had spread the Tantric Buddhist tradition. Interesting read of this forgotten story of Lubsan Samdan Tsydenov, a monk who briefly ruled as a dharma king. He amazingly created a nonviolence Buddhist kingdom who protected thousands of women, children, and men at that time. In 1920’s Soviet government considered Lubsan Samdan Tsydenov to be rebels and Traditional Buryat culture was erased since then. Buddhist monasteries in Buryatia were destroyed and many followers were murdered. He was well remembered as a true Dharma King and a national hero. Interesting read of a Great Lama.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/lubsan-samdan-tsydenov-the-dharma-king-of-buryatia.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Apr 10. 2021 03:57 PM
    We came to this world with nothing and leaving with nothing. There nothings that belongs to us. Whatever we own is temporary on loan only, so we should be glad in this life we are in human form. We should appreciate what we have at this moment, , doing , learning Dharma and practicing Dharma for a good and meaningful cause. Transforming our mind and benefiting others instead of ourselves.
    What Rinpoche had said and explained , very true indeed … we don’t own our body. Well use our body for the greater good of others. Reading the transcript by Tsem Rinpoche tells us more understanding .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this profound teachings.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/transcript-you-dont-own-your-body.html
  • sarassitham
    Friday, Apr 9. 2021 11:20 PM
    Thank you for the wonderful sharing, it’s truly amazing. Each one of these statues is special and drool-worthy, and they have rightly signified the place where they stand today.

    Even when we don’t have the opportunity too witness those beautiful Buddha Statues, yet we are blessed merely by looking at it.
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Apr 9. 2021 01:19 PM
    Reading this article again, truly feeling sorry those refugees in Netherlands. Staying in another country far away from homeland is already sad. They need to start from scratch, could imagine their situation living in a foreign facing a lot of hinders such languages, cultures and so forth. The sad state of refugees living in Netherlands is really bad. The Netherlands has had a reputation as a humanitarian haven, with refugees and immigrants as the situation in their country isn’t safe enough. But entering as refugees they ended up living in empty offices, as room . The government authorities failed to provide basic amenities for those rejected ones who have not or cannot leave the country. The refugees are stuck in a system, were call as an illegal immigrant. They wandered in the streets of Amsterdam, moving from one place to another left in the cold winter. Lucky enough they have volunteers helping them supplying blankets , foods for them. Hopefully the authorities could do more to help those refugees out there and the situation right now has improved.
    Thank you Melissa for sharing this .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/the-building-wanderers-of-amsterdam.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Apr 9. 2021 01:17 PM
    Being generous also makes us feel better about ourselves. Generosity is both a natural confidence builder and a natural repellent of self-hatred. By focusing on what we are giving rather than on what we are receiving. Acts of generosity, such as giving our time, talent or resources, and expecting nothing in return, have been proven to be good for our health. Generous individuals are personally more fulfilled, happier and more peaceful within themselves. Enrich our life and that of others by practicing generosity. That’s what I consider true generosity without anything in return.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Datuk May for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/students-friends/generosity-giving-gifts.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Apr 9. 2021 01:15 PM
    A Stunning Chenrezig Thangka with an interesting story behind it.Detailed explanations of the iconography of this Buddha. Having understand about it ,will help us to practice better . Chenrezig is the bodhisattva that symbolizes the compassion of all Buddhas.The qualities of Chenrezig is indeed amazing in such away benefited many of us. According to legend, Chenrezig made an vow that he would not rest until he had liberated all the beings in all the realms of suffering. Reciting the Chenrezig mani mantra and practising profound meditation on the nature of sound is believed to be powerful.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Beatrix for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/a-chenrezig-thangka.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 6. 2021 04:52 PM
    Meaningful poems tells us a thousand words. Value and appreciate every moment of our life with those around us. Rinpoche had a very strong connection with Manjushri since childhood and its not surprised the way Rinpoche describe the divine. Lovely poems for us to ponder deeply.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this with us.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/purpose.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 6. 2021 04:52 PM
    It is important to use these difficult times as life lessons, growing and shaping us to blossom into a stronger and wiser person every day. Stay strong and be tough, working as a team, sharing out as a team. Whatever happen then through thick and thin, individual commitment to work as a team is what makes a team work successful toward a common vision. It is true that we can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed as a team. Never give up even its hard with nothing much. Alone, we can do so little compare to working together, we can do so much.
    Reading this quote will inspire us to improve ourselves and our life so that we may be successful someday as a team.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/dont-see-the-porridge-and-run.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 5. 2021 03:04 PM
    The incredible story of the Chinese paper cut artist Ku Shulan. She is one such inspiring lady in the Chinese world of paper cutting. Been born in poor peasant family, doesn’t deter her from doing what she loves most. She had come along way of struggles and hardship to be where she was. She only showed her talent in later life following awakening from a coma after a head injury, discovered by Shanxi Province Cultural Center. Ku Shulan was designated “Master of China Folk Art and Crafts” by UNESCO and was bestowed many domestic awards for her beautiful paper cuttings. Sadly Ku Shulan passed away in 2004 at age 84, but her popularity, and reputation continue to grow . Her unique coloured paper cuttings are the jewel of Chinese folk art and will remain forever so.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this inspiring post of a talented lady.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/ku-shulan-goddess-of-paper-cut.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 5. 2021 03:03 PM
    Do Dharma work. Do Dharma practice. Chase after Dharma…..well said by Rinpoche. Life is meaningless when we only chase for money, fame only at the of life nothing is left for us. What remains is just memories when we are gone. As we grew older , it’s time to chase after something that can last long till our last breathe. Learning, practicing Dharma is the best choice. Since learning and practicing dharma have my life change, benefiting other makes my wonderful.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing with folded hands. Rinpoche had showed me the way and so as many more others.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/chasing.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Apr 5. 2021 03:00 PM
    Inspiring comment by Claire Briard who only met Rinpoche on facebook gave up eating meat. It has since changed his life and she have so much more respect for the all animals. She did wonderfully by encouraging her friends and anyone she met to go meatless. Beautiful message . Do not harm animals , give them a chance to live.
    Thank you Rinpoche this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/claire-briard.html

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

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According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn\'t this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
1 year ago
According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn't this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden\'s blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
1 year ago
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden's blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
1 year ago
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat\'s doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
1 year ago
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat's doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
1 year ago
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
1 year ago
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
1 year ago
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
It\'s very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it\'s very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
1 year ago
It's very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it's very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
1 year ago
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
1 year ago
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
2 yearss ago
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
Very powerful story! Tibetan Resistance group Chushi Gangdruk reveals how Dalai Lama escaped in 1959- https://bit.ly/2S9VMGX
2 yearss ago
Very powerful story! Tibetan Resistance group Chushi Gangdruk reveals how Dalai Lama escaped in 1959- https://bit.ly/2S9VMGX
At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
2 yearss ago
At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
2 yearss ago
See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
2 yearss ago
Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
2 yearss ago
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat's land here in Malaysia
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
2 yearss ago
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
2 yearss ago
Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
2 yearss ago
The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
Sacred Vajra Yogini
2 yearss ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 yearss ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha\'s mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha's mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha\'s. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
2 yearss ago
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha's. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
2 yearss ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
2 yearss ago
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
This is pretty amazing!

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

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


Ask the Pastors

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

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

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

  • April 12, 2021 03:20
    Eden asked: Dear Pastors, How are all of you doing? I have a few questions here. I will be very grateful if you can answer them. Thank you. 1) If we are here because of our previous life karma, previous previous karma and so on. May i know when does all of this started? How does this chain of karma started? Im sure we all had our 1st life and everything had a beginning to it. 2) I am currently facing some problem over my career pathway, are there any practices and mantras that I can do to request for guidance?
    pastor answered: Dear Eden, Thank you for your questions. 1. Buddhism does not believe in a 1st life, and the reason being is the Buddhist view of time. Most people think of time and existence as linear. It has a definitive starting point and a certain end point. But Buddhism views time as a cyclic. Hence, our universe as we understand it, will at one point cease to exist, and then a new universe will come into existence. However, even though our current universe will end, due to the force of karma and reincarnation, we will take rebirth into the new universe and have many rebirths there. So in Buddhism we say that we have had "countless" rebirths, as you would never be able to count how many lifetimes you have had. This cycle is vicious and leads us to take rebirth endlessly. The only way to stop this cycle is to transcend it altogether, which is the state of Buddhahood, in which you are completely liberated from the cycle, known as "samsara". Also the way in which we think about karma is not linear either. It is not one for one. By this I mean, if you do one negative action, it is not that you will experience only one negative result. You will actually experience many negative results, with differing levels of severity until the karma is exhausted. How you respond to the negative results can lead to either more negative karma, or positive karma. Hence, the law of karma according to the Buddhist view point is much more nuanced then the general understanding of karma that people have these days. The Buddha explained this process in a teaching known as the 12 Links of Dependent Origination, which is quite complex. If you want to learn more about this teaching, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche gave a very profound teaching on it here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/teaching-on-the-twelve-links-of-dependent-origination.html Hence, according to Buddhism, the understand of time is a never-ending cycle in which universes are created, destroyed and created again due to the power of karma. Since it is a cycle, there is no "beginning" or "1st life" for sentient beings. 2. In regards to your career pathway, I would suggest you engage in the combined practice of Lama Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden. We have heard of many people who are either stuck in their career or who need to find good jobs, succeed in the their goals after engaging in this practice with a sincere motivation. There is a book available regarding the practice here: https://www.vajrasecrets.com/the-dorje-shugden-handbook. We also have an entire section of this website dedicated to various aspects of the practice, including history, other prayers, etc. (https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/category/dorje-shugden). I hope this helps. Let us know if we can help in any other way.
  • April 11, 2021 00:23
    Lara asked: Hello pastors, I have a family member suffering from depression right now. May I know how I can help him to overcome this? Thank you.
    pastor answered: Dear Lara, I'm sorry to hear that your family member is going through this. When someone is going through such a difficult time, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche has advised that the person themselves seek qualified medical help as well as engage in the practice of Lama Tsongkhapa, which is well-known to help overcome things like depression. From your side you should be as supportive as possible. Take the time to understand what your family member is going through, and in which ways you can support them to overcome their depression and heal. You can watch a fantastic teaching about the practice of Lama Tsongkha here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/sayonara-to-depression.html. The prayer text for the practice can be found here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/sadhana-prayers.html#19 However, sometimes family members may not be open to the engaging in the practice themselves. In that case, you can engage in the practice yourself and dedicate the merits for the family member to heal, but this will not be as effective as the family member doing the practice themselves. Another thing that you can do, it to make abundant offerings or engage in virtuous activities like as helping the less fortunate, and dedicating the merits from those activities to your family member. You can also have pujas sponsored for your family member. The following two pujas would be excellent: Medicine Buddha Puja - which is good for healing, both physical and mental (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/medicine-buddha-puja-fund) Dorje Shugden Puja - to remove obstacles for a swift recovery (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/dorje-shugden-wishfulfilling-puja-fund) These are the various methods in which you can help. You can do just one or a combination of the methods mentioned to generate as much positive energy and merit as possible for your family member. I hope this helps.
  • April 10, 2021 07:50
    ray asked: hi pastor i have a question regarding purification practices because ive been having some doubts now, is it true that some people say engaging in purification practices bad things would then happen to the practitioner after that? be it being sick or facing obstacles coming after that.
    pastor answered: Dear Ray, Thank you for your question. When we engage in purification practices, what we are purifying is our negative karma. If you know about karma, you know that eventually you will need to experience your karma, be this negative or positive. When you experience your negative karma, then you experience negative situations. This could be something major, like having an accident, to something very minor such as feeling bad if say a loved one says something in a way that you perceive as being negative. Any experience you have that you perceive as negative, is a manifestation of your negative karma. During purification practices, through your own effort of invoking upon the enlightened beings and practice of the Four Opponent Powers, you are able to purify this negative karma. However, for a negative karma to be fully exhausted, you need to experience it. Say you have a karma to get into an accident, if you don't purify and exhaust it, then you will need to suffer from it 100%. This could mean getting into a car accident which is very severe and you are hurt badly. If you engage in purification practices then you can purify, let's say 99% of the karma. But for it to be exhausted fully, you still need to experience it. In this case, maybe you do get into an accident. Since you have purified most of the karma, your car only bumps into another car very softly. You don't even feel it, the person in the other car doesn't feel it and you car is not damaged at all. This is the reason why some people say if you engage in purification practices, bad things will happen. And because of that people are put off doing purification practices. This is wrong thinking because if you do experience negative situations when engaged in purification practices, this could be because: a) What you experienced is actually the purified karma, rather than the full force of the karma. In this case you should rejoice that through your effort of engaging in the practice, you didn't experience something much worse. b) It could just simply be the manifestation of a karma that wasn't purified. This means, you would have had to go through this experience anyway. c) Because you are engaged in purification practices, you are thinking of karma a lot. Therefore, when such experiences occur then you attribute it to karma, and then think it is linked to your purification practice. Then you believe that doing purification practices is bad because you have to suffer from such experiences. This is wrong thinking. Perhaps even if you were not doing purification practices, then you would still experience the situation, but you wouldn't actually think anything of it. You would just go about the rest of your day as usual. That being said, when you are doing purification practices, there comes a point were certain negative karma is so weak that you need to experience it for it to be exhausted completely. This can and does manifest as negative situations, such as minor illnesses, or even accidents, etc. However, the point to remember is the karma causing these situations have been purified so they are very mild compared to their full form. These negative situations can also be purified/exhausted in dreams, etc. Another way they can be purified is having mental disturbances or emotional ups and downs when actually doing the purification practices. In essence, you will need to feel the effects of your negative karma in some form or another, so better that you experience it in a very mild form right? This is what purification practices helps you to do. Purification practices are not something to be scared of. In fact, you should rejoice when engaged in purification practices. On a more deeper level, without some form of purification practice it is hard to understand higher aspects of the Dharma. Your negative karma will block you from being able to understand the Dharma and then internalise it. That is why purification practices are emphasised within each and every tradition and are a prerequisite for higher teaching such as tantra. The benefits of purification practices (such as enabling you to exhaust your negative karma in a very mild form, and preparing your mind for higher teachings) outweighs having to experience a very small negative situation. Therefore think about the benefits of purification practice and contemplate on it. This will help you to develop faith in them and get rid of any doubts or fears that you may have. I hope this helps.
  • April 1, 2021 04:54
    You are awesome! asked: Hello, you are awesome! keep going!
    pastor answered: Thank you for your kind message. It is very encouraging for us to read. May you always be blessed by the Three Jewels.
  • March 28, 2021 15:08
    vikas baluni asked: abut growth of my business
    pastor answered: Dear Vikas Baluni, I am unclear as to the actually meaning of your question but I believe you are asking how to increase and grow your business. According to Buddhism, everything that we go through in life is due to karma, this includes both the good things and the bad things. Therefore, for your business to grow and do well depends on your good karma. Only one type of energy can overcome karma and is always good for your, and that is what we call merit or punya (in sanskrit). So in order to have merit for your business to do well, you have to take actions that generate merit. The main of these is to transform your mind to become a more compassionate and wiser person, to help others less fortunate, to engage in pujas and other such virtuous activities. There are certain deity practices that are well-known in Buddhism to help increase the energies of wealth and success in our lives. These can help your business to grow. Once such practice is that of Bhagawan Gyenze, you can click here to find out more: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/dorje-shugden-gyenze-to-increase-life-merits-and-wealth.html Bhagawan Gyenze will definitely help you to grow your business, if you have a good motivation. If you motivation is only about yourself, then your business will not grow that much. But if you have the motivation help others, then Bhagawan Gyenze will help you even more. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 25, 2021 01:11
    Jason asked: I have been practicing white dzambala and the bathing / water tormas for quite some time now. Recently I have been getting regular dreams where white dzambala appears and just smiles at me, or I dream that I am doing white dzambala chutor practice. I understand that when lama tsongkhapa got dreams of deities he thought that this was Mara acting up and paid no attention to it until his lama said something. My lama is currently on retreat and it is difficult to contact him. Please give me some advice on what is happening. I'm just some normal beginners smuck and I'm getting worried that this is a bad sign. When I wake up I feel at peace... But according to commentaries this could be Mara.
    pastor answered: Dear Jason, Thank you for your question. I am really happy to hear that you are engaging in Dzambhala's practice. It's extremely beneficial. You are right that Lama Tsongkhapa ignored his dreams of deities, and viewed them as bad signs. But before jumping to conclusions, we must analyse the reasons why Lama Tsongkhapa ignored not only his dreams, also the visions of the deities he received. The reason that Lama Tsongkhapa did not consider it a positive sign is because as practitioners on the spiritual path, it is all too easy to get carried away with 'signs' or advice, visions, dreams from supposed deities. Sometimes if we 'analyse' them it can lead us in the wrong direction because of our mistaken understanding. Sometimes, other entities can also enter our dreams and tell us things that we believe, hence we start practising things that are not Dharmic in nature. Lama Tsongkhapa warned against such things, rather Lama Tsongkhapa said that we should rely on the Dharma teachings that are genuine and transmitted to us through an unbroken line through our lineage. Generally speaking however, these dreams you are having are literally just dreams, so there is nothing to worry about. One category of dreams we have are known as samsaric dreams. These arise from karma and karmic traces in the mind. This can also include emotions, memories, etc. The meaning we find in these dreams are imputed by the dreamer, and not inherent in the dream. This also applies to waking life. We impute meaning onto situations and circumstances, rather than the meaning being inherent to the circumstance. It is like reading a book. Words in the book are just marks on paper, however, because we use our sense of meaning, we make a meaning out of it. However, this is always open to interpretation. For example, if you tell your dream to two people, they can interpret the meaning very differently, even though you told them the exact same details. When we have dreams such as of our teacher, our practice, the Buddhas, etc., it is still more than likely to be just a samsaric dream. Because we have been engaging in sustained practice, or have imprints from previous lives, these can surface in our dreams hence we have dreams of Buddhas, our teachers, etc. There is nothing to worry about or to consider overly auspicious or a 'sign'. Just realise that you have had the dream, do not allow your thoughts to dwell on it, accept it and move on. However, do take note that you had these dreams and once your Guru is out of retreat, please consult your Guru and inform him/her of these occurances and seek your Guru's advice if any. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 23, 2021 02:01
    Jason asked: I white dzambhala is a wealth deity but can he also act as a dharma protector?
    pastor answered: Dear Jason, Thank you for your question. The practice of Dzambhala is actually a Yidam practice, this means that Dzambhala is a meditational deity. When you engage in his practice, as well as bestowing wealth, through his practice you also develop qualities that help you progress towards enlightenment. In the case of Dzambhala, the primary quality he helps you develop is actually generosity, which is one of the Six Perfections. Therefore, although he is known as a wealth deity, he is much, much more than that. When you engage in his practice, you are actually developing virtuous qualities in your mindstream. The function of Dharma Protectors however is to remove obstacles and to create conducive conditions so that you can transform your mind. Hence, the function of a meditational deity and a Dharma Protector is different. That being said, when you engage in Dzambhala's practice properly, you do gain wealth. Generally, we only consider this wealth to be external wealth, but Dzambhala's practice is more than that, because through his practice you gain internal wealth which are virtuous qualities. Due to the fact his practice also brings material wealth, he is known as a wealth deity. When you practice any meditational deity, you will gain some physical benefit as well, which can seem to mirror the effect of Dharma Protectors, but their function is very different. Dzambhala for example grants material wealth, but his actually function is to increase inner wealth. Another example would be Medicine Buddha, outward he heals our physical body, but inwardly he also helps to heal our minds and develop qualities such as compassion. Dharma Protectors can also help to heal our body, but for real internal change, we need to rely on a meditational deity. I hope this answer helps.
  • March 16, 2021 21:23
    ray asked: Dear pastors, i have a question regarding vajra and bells. can one use them if they do not have any sort of initiation or whatsoever?
    pastor answered: Dear Ray, Thank you for your question. You are right that traditionally vajras and bells are only used after receiving initiation. However, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche recommended learning how to use the vajra and bell, as a means of creating the causes to receive initiation in the future. That said, there are many dos and don'ts related to using the vajra and bell. You can learn not only how to use them, but also vajra and bell etiquette from one of Kechara's Pastors. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 7, 2021 17:30
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Do you recommend doing Tsem Rinpoche’s guru yoga as part of daily Sadhana? I am sure I read on the article for the name retreat that it could be done as daily prayers but now I can’t see that sentence? Thank you.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Yes of course, you may include Tsem Rinpoche's Guru Yoga as part of your daily sadhana if you wish. This creates a very strong bond with Tsem Rinpoche. If you are following the Diamond Path sadhana (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/diamond-path), you insert the Guru Yoga after you have completed the Gaden Lhagyama (Guru Yoga of Lama Tsongkhapa). Alternative, if you are using a different prayer text, you insert the Guru Yoga after Gaden Lhagyama, or before any deity prayers that you do such as Manjushri, Tara, etc. After you complete the deity practice section of your sadhana, you continue on to your Dharma protector practice, and finish with your completion dedication. I hope this helps. Do let us know if this is not clear. Thanks.
  • March 4, 2021 22:52
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Can a lay person work towards the preliminary practices by accumulating daily ? Many thanks.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Yes, of course. Anyone can engage in the preliminary practices, you don't have to be ordained in order to do so. However for one's practice to be considered a full preliminary practice, you need to do 100,000 repetitions of whichever practice you are engaged in without break. That means you must engage in at least one session a day, until the count is completed. 10% of the count is also added on top, to make up for any unintentional mistakes. So the figure would actually be 110,000. If you skip a day, that means you have broken your preliminary retreat. If this occurs you can still dedicate the practice you have done so far, and you will still benefit from the merit generated and the purification of negative karma from the practice, but it is not counted as a full preliminary practice. Also you must adhere to the retreat procedures for the duration of the time it takes you to complete the particular preliminary practice. For example, an altar with daily offerings, retreat seat with swastika, refraining from eating black foods, etc. This may not be convenient for most people in our day and age. So what you can do is to spend a certain amount of time accumulating a specific figure, for example 10,000 repetitions of a particular practice. Seal the practice at the end with a strong dedication, like the King of Prayers. Later on, you can repeat the procedure more times until you complete 100,000. This method was given by H.E. Tsem Rinpoche for modern-day practitioners who do not have the time to complete 100,000 in one go. While it technically does not constitute a full preliminary retreat, you still gain immense merits and purification from engaging in the practice, even if spaced out. As Rinpoche said, it's better for you to do mini preliminary retreats than not doing any of the preliminary practices whatsoever. That being said, if you do have the ability to do a full preliminary retreat and it will not negatively impact you, such as create financial difficulties or strain familial relationships, then of course go ahead! To have the sincere wish to engage in any Dharma practice is wonderful. You can read more about the individual preliminary practices here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/preliminary-practice.html You can watch a short teaching on the preliminary practices by H.E. Tsem Rinpoche here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/cosmic-tantra.html
  • March 3, 2021 04:13
    Sandra asked: Dear respected pastors, what are dreams? Do dreams have significance? Are they simply images the mind views at night - do they resemble the dreamer's state of mind? Thank you for all your replies :) :)
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Hello. Nice to see you back here. On the normal level, both waking and dream states are both marred by our delusions. The teachings tell us that this deluded state continues through all our experiences, whether during the dreaming or waking states. The way to overcome this is to "wake up" from our delusions, or reach enlightenment. Normally when people think of dreams, they do so in psychological terms and so focus on the content of the dream. When we investigate the nature of the dream itself, we begin to investigate something deeper, the processes that underlies the whole of our existence. Understand this propels you further along the spiritual journey towards enlightenment. We have many dreams during one night of sleep, and may or may not consciously remember then when we wake up. In terms of content, dreams can be used to work through psychological issues or can indicate certain issues and overcoming them (as is common within Western psychological practices). In Tibetan Buddhism, dreams can be used for much more. In the advanced practices, one can transform ordinary dreams to further one's spiritual journey. This is not only in terms of working through psychological issues, but in terms of meditation and practice as well. Generally, there are three types of dreams as described below. Most of us only experience the first type, unless we progress on the spiritual path. 1. Samsaric dreams: these arise from karma and karmic traces in the mind. This can also include emotions, memories, etc. The meaning we find in these dreams are imputed by the dreamer, and not inherent in the dream. This also applies to waking life. We impute meaning onto situations and circumstances, rather than the meaning being inherent to the circumstance. It is like reading a book. Words in the book are just marks on paper, however, because we use our sense of meaning, we take a meaning out of it. However, this is always open to interpretation. For example, if you tell your dream to two people, they can interpret the meaning very differently, even though you told them the exact same details. 2. Clarity dreams: These dreams occur when you are fairly progressed in meditational practices and can carry this into the dream state. These dreams arise not from the emotions, or memories, etc., but from more subtler forms of karma and delusions. However, just like in waking mediational practice, you are not affected by the images or thoughts that appear to you. 3. Clear Light dreams: In the advanced tantric practices, there are teachings called dream yoga. The object of these is to achieve the clear light dreams, which are very difficult to achieve and take years and years of intense practice. The most important clear light mind that arises is actually at the time of our death, if we are trained enough in this very subtle state, we can actually control where we take rebirth. If we are more experienced in this state, then we can actually use it to meditate on the teachings and achieve enlightenment. Clear light dreams are a "lesser" type of clear light mind, that helps practitioners prepare for the time of death. When we have an auspicious dream such as of our teacher, our practice, the Buddhas, etc., even though this is auspicious, it is still more than likely to be just a samsaric dream. There are instances however, when the enlightened beings and Dharma protectors will send practitioners dreams to help with their practice or as methods of divination. Tsem Rinpoche once told us of a very powerful Nyingma lama known for his divination abilities. Students would ask him a question, then he would take a nap, and receive divination advice in this dreams, which he would then relay to his students. This lama was well-known for this ability because his dream divinations were extremely accurate. As I am sure you can tell, the scope of dreams with the Buddhist context is very vast and I will not be able to cover everything here. However, I hope that what I have written helps your understanding. Thank you.
  • March 1, 2021 23:37
    Sandra asked: Hello dear pastors, wish we could have an article like the one below to highlight the auspicious days of 2021. https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/auspicious-days.html
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your suggestion. At the moment, there are no plans to publish another article with 2021 dates. But I have listed out some of the auspicious days and their dates for this year for you. I have only included future dates, not those that have already passed. Saga Dawa Duchen - 26th May 2021 Chokhor Duchen - 14th July 2021 Dorje Shugden Day - 24th August 2021 Lhabab Duchen - 27th October 2021 Gaden Ngamchoe or Tsongkhapa Day - 29th December 2021 I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 27, 2021 03:31
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Is it ok to pray from different areas in the house (even where there is no altar)? I was told you can't create 2 altars in 1 house.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your question and its nice to see you here again. The reason why we pray in front of our altars is because it becomes a focal point of the enlightened energies we are invoking. Therefore it becomes a kind of portal for the energies of transformation, peace, healing, prosperity and protection. It is also the place where we make offerings to the Buddhas. As such, most people usually only have 1 altar in their home. However, you can have more than 1 altar in your home. As it is an altar, it should be complete with representations of the body, speech and mind of the Buddhas. This would be an image (either a statue, thangka, tsa tsa, poster, framed picture, etc), a Dharma text and a stupa. In front of these, you should have at least 1 type of offering or more. This can be a fixed offering or maybe even a set of water offerings, which you make every day. Since practitioners make offerings on a daily basis, most opt to have only 1 altar, but there is no rule in Buddhism to say you can only have 1 altar. The altar however, should be placed in a respectful place. So, not in the bathroom. Or if in the bedroom, you should put a screen up to block it when you are changing, sleeping, etc. Alternatively, you can keep it in a cupboard, and close the doors during such activities. But altars should be dedicated places to the Buddhas, so don't put secular items in the same place, such as on the same shelf, etc. When it comes to praying, it is usually done in front of the altar, as you are invoking the enlightened beings. When you do your prayers there it becomes a powerful place in your home, and provides you with a sacred space to pray and meditate. However, if circumstances are difficult, then of course you can pray elsewhere. For example, when I first set up an altar, I was living in a single room with not much space. I set up an altar on a shelf but was not able to pray in front of it. Once I had made offerings, I would simply sit in another part of the room and do the prayers there. If it is really not convenient, then of course it is permissible to do the prayers elsewhere. It is better to do the prayers, than not do them at all if you can't be in front of your altar. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 25, 2021 01:33
    Kuenzang wangdi asked: What would be my most suitable colour ?
    pastor answered: Dear Kuenzang Wangdi, Thank you for your question. The following calculators may be of interest to you: Chinese Zodiac: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/horoscopes/the-chinese-zodiac.html Tibetan Astrology: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/tibetan-astrology/tibetan-astrology.html In relation to which colour if most favourable for you, unfortunately our calculators do not give this information. However, from a Buddhist practice viewpoint, what is more important is the transformation of the mind. Once we transform our minds according to teachings, we are able to overcome any obstacle and create good conditions for our lives. You can learn a very short mind transformation teaching here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/eight-verses-of-thought-transformation.html You can couple this with formal practice. If you are interested, a very good practice to bring energies of increase and generate a long life, merits, wealth and prosperity in your life, is the the practice of Gyenze. You can find information about the practice here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/dorje-shugden-gyenze-to-increase-life-merits-and-wealth.html. I hope this helps. Thanks.
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CHAT PICTURES

Fwd: 12 minute Affiliate Multiple Ways to Earn Commissions
2 days ago
Fwd: 12 minute Affiliate Multiple Ways to Earn Commissions
#kecharafoodbank: In collaboration with Good Shepherd Services (GSS) based in Ipoh, we travelled to Buntong with food rations for 33 families. Some of the food items given include rice, noodles, cooking oil and biscuits; in total, we gave 726kg of food to these beneficiaries from the underprivileged class. We are glad to have been able to contribute, especially to families with children and in poor living conditions. We wish to thank GSS for alerting us about those in need, and we look forward to extending more support in the future together with this not-for-profit organization doing good work. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 month ago
#kecharafoodbank: In collaboration with Good Shepherd Services (GSS) based in Ipoh, we travelled to Buntong with food rations for 33 families. Some of the food items given include rice, noodles, cooking oil and biscuits; in total, we gave 726kg of food to these beneficiaries from the underprivileged class. We are glad to have been able to contribute, especially to families with children and in poor living conditions. We wish to thank GSS for alerting us about those in need, and we look forward to extending more support in the future together with this not-for-profit organization doing good work. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In an urgent effort to provide food and necessities to the poverty-stricken in Bentong and rural areas of Pahang, we are launching Food Bank Bentong. With your support, Food Bank Bentong would be able to feed 500 families totaling 2,300 people on a regular basis, giving them a chance to enjoy a basic sense of security we consider a human right. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 month ago
In an urgent effort to provide food and necessities to the poverty-stricken in Bentong and rural areas of Pahang, we are launching Food Bank Bentong. With your support, Food Bank Bentong would be able to feed 500 families totaling 2,300 people on a regular basis, giving them a chance to enjoy a basic sense of security we consider a human right. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
2 months ago
Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
2 months ago
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 months ago
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 months ago
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 months ago
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
5 months ago
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 months ago
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Fwd: Dear Sotha
6 months ago
Fwd: Dear Sotha
Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
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Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
7 months ago
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families  ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
7 months ago
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
7 months ago
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
9 months ago
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
10 months ago
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
10 months ago
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
10 months ago
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
11 months ago
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
11 months ago
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
11 months ago
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
11 months ago
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wesak 2020
11 months ago
Wesak 2020
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
1 years ago
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
1 years ago
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
1 years ago
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
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Dorje Shugden
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