The Sixty-Four Yogini Temple of Hirapur, India

By | Jun 27, 2018 | Views: 2,486
The sixty-four yogini temple in Hirapur.

The sixty-four yogini temple of Hirapur

(By Tsem Rinpoche and Pastor David Lai)

The sixty-four yogini temple in Hirapur, Odisha sits on an ancient piece of land once ruled by the old Kalinga kingdom. The site is also a hotbed of various cults and religions that flourished here in ancient times. In fact, Jainism, Buddhism, Shaktaism, Saivaism and later Vaishnavism thrived on these fertile plains for centuries.

During the golden age that followed after the old Kalinga kingdom was annexed and ruled by various succeeding dynasties, Buddhism and Tantric practice flourished here, and the cult of the yogini evolved as Tantra took hold in these lands. The cult of the Sixty-Four Yoginis was one of these prevailing traditions, and it culminated in the construction of these sacred shrines to the yoginis.

 

Tantra

Tantra refers to the esoteric teachings and practices of Buddhism and Hinduism that were developed simultaneously around 500 CE. In the Buddhist tradition, the Sanskrit term “tantra” literally means “something stretched out”, like thread woven into a piece of fabric in a loom. This thread is “stretched out” to represent the everlasting mental continuum, which has no beginning and no end as we experience endless cycles of death and rebirth.

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The practice of Tantra involves tapping into the everlasting continuity of the mind. It operates on three levels — the basis, the pathway and the result. On the level of basis, the everlasting continuity of the mind is at the subtlest level, which is known as the primordial clear light mind. This is our inherent nature that we take from lifetime to lifetime. The nature of this level of mind is clarity and awareness that is free from all conceptual thought or disturbing emotions, and it is what lies beneath all experiences whether we are awake or asleep. Therefore, no passing negative or positive experience, intensity of experience or rebirth can actually affect this clear light mind. Through the practice of Tantra, one taps into this subtlest mind as a basis for attaining enlightenment, which normally surfaces briefly through the bliss of sexual union and briefly at the moment of death as we enter into the bardo – the intermediate state between death and rebirth.

The second level of Tantra is the pathway and this refers to a specific method for attaining Buddhahood, namely the meditative practice of identifying ourselves as our personal Buddha or yidam. Hence, this special tantric method is called deity yoga. Such practices are normally conferred through an initiation ritual of the specific deity during which the lama plants the seeds of Bodhicitta and accomplishment of that deity into our mind-stream. From thereon, the initiate holds vows and is normally required to engage in a daily sadhana, which involves recitation, offerings, visualisations and mantra recitations in order to identify himself/herself as the deity. As a result, the practice of Tantra is sometimes called taking the “fruit”, which is enlightenment in the form of a Buddha-deity onto the “path”, which is our daily sadhana of self-identification as the Buddha-deity.

Finally, the third level of Tantra is the resultant path, which is to merge our mind-stream with the deity and thereby achieve enlightenment. Therefore in short, Tantra involves the practice of identifying ourselves as the Buddha-deity in order to purify our mind-stream of its stains and thereby achieve the basis, which is our primordial nature of clear light — Buddhahood.

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The Cult of the Yogini

According to archaeological findings, the worship of yoginis was prevalent in the 9th century all the way through to the 13th century CE. At least nine yogini temples from this period have been unearthed, of which the best-known examples are in the states of Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu in India.

Despite the fact that a yogini normally refers to a female yogi, it is also used to refer to mysterious female beings who bring about extraordinary tantric attainments for initiates. In this case, she is an adept of tantric lore in any of its various esoteric methods. Thus, the terms yogini and dakini can be used interchangeably in this instance, as they refer to the same type of being.

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Within the Chandi Purana by Sudramuni Sharala Das (15th century) of Orissa, the term yogini refers to the forms or qualities of the Supreme Goddess. Each yogini is also seen as a manifestation of different aspects of her body. However, in other religious texts, the yogini is also an attendant of the Great Goddess.

In Tibetan Buddhism, the term dakini usually refers to an attendant or entourage of a main Buddha-deity. For example, the wisdom dakinis are usually part of the entourage of tantric meditational Buddhas such as Vajrayogini, Heruka Chakrasamvara and so forth. These are enlightened dakinis who are usually emanations of the yidam or our personal meditational Buddha.

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When one engages in a sadhana, the dakinis are called forth from their natural abodes to converge at certain points in our body in order to bless, empower and purify our energy channels so we can develop true spiritual attainments. According to the lore of the dakinis, it is also said that one can acquire ‘siddhis’ or special powers with abilities like being able to transform people into animals or birds through the mastery of certain deity practices.

There are also some worldly dakinis who are known to be frightening beings that are much feared. In some Indian texts, the word dakini is also used to refer to a sorceress, witch or even a flesh-eating ghoul. Nevertheless, a unifying and essential quality of all dakinis is their ability to fly. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why temples dedicated to dakinis are usually open to the sky.

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The Sixty-Four Yoginis

The sixty-four yoginis are based on the Asta Matrakas or the eight major forms of Devi, the mother goddess. Each of these yoginis has eight attendants and when all the yoginis are assembled, they add up to sixty-four yoginis. The legend surrounding the origin of the yogini temple at Hirapur, as told by the local priest, is that the Goddess Durga assumed the form of the sixty-four yoginis in order to defeat a demon. Upon winning the battle, the yoginis turned to Durga and requested to be commemorated in the form of a temple shrine dedicated to the yoginis.

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There is also a tradition of the Sapta Matrikas or Seven Mothers and they are frequently represented on the outer walls of Shiva temples. The eighth yogini is “missing” in this case because Shiva’s consort is the eighth. These yoginis are Brahmi, Maheshvari, Aindri, Kaumari, Vaishnavi, Varahi and Chamunda.

Five out of the six Orissan yogini temples are dedicated to the goddess Chamunda. She is an awe-inspiring divine figure who appears as an emaciated old woman standing over a corpse. Her emaciated form reveals every vein and tendon while her gaping mouth and bulging eyes dominate her face. There is also a shrine of Vetali named after her manifestation as a self-arisen corpse. These are all sixty-four yogini temples and have the complete set of yoginis carved on their inner walls, while the central image is either Chamunda or Vetali. The sixth yogini temple is located in Chaurasi, Orisa and is dedicated to Varahi. She is in the form of a corpulent boar-faced divine lady. In one hand she holds a fish and her vehicle is the buffalo.

A village pond near the temple

A village pond near the Hirapur yogini temple

Aside from the yoginis, there are usually two protective and fearsome bhairava carvings, one wielding a knife and with a severed head next to the figure. Interestingly, two severed human heads take the place of the customary fruit offerings which are found on the tripods of the other images in the shrine. Some experts interpret this imagery to mean that human sacrifice was once practised in these temples.

Ancient inscriptions at the yogini temples indicate that dakini rituals were practised well into the 16th century. Thereafter, the cult diminished to the point that the temples were abandoned. However, the temples continue to see offerings left at the feet of their sacred images to this day.

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The Hirapur Yogini Temple

The plan of the Hirapur temple. Click on image to enlarge.

The plan of the Hirapur temple.
Click on image to enlarge.

The Hirapur Temple is the smallest of all known yogini temples that have been unearthed by archaeologists. This yogini temple is situated in Hirapur, which is 20km away from the eastern part of the modern capital of Odisha, Bhubaneswar. According to legend, the temple was built by Queen Hiradevi of the Bramha Dynasty in the 9th century but was later abandoned. It was only rediscovered in 1953.

The architecture of yogini temples is distinctly different from that of other temples and shrines. Almost all known yogini temples are circular and hypaethral, which means that the temple is without a roof and is open to the elements. The circular construction of the yogini temple represents the chakra — the deeply symbolic wheel that represents the universe of the deity.

The Hirapur temple was constructed entirely out of sandstone blocks. The circular wall has many niches, each enshrining a statue of a yogini. There are approximately 60 such images carved out of black granite and placed within these wall niches. This yogini temple also houses a central altar called the Chandi Mandapa, which enshrines the remaining yoginis on all four sides. Some historians believe that an image of Maha Bhairava was also once enshrined at the Chandi Mandapa.

Apart from charnel grounds, yogini temples are centres for tantric practices, the main purpose of which is to develop attainments (Skt. siddhi) or ‘supernatural powers.’ The tantric practitioner aspires to develop extraordinary control of the body and mind, bring or stop rain, attain supernatural mastery of the elements, the power to heal, wealth, or even destructive abilities.

Today, the Hirapur yogini temple is held with a mixture of awe, reverence and fear. The folk belief of never crossing a yogini (which would result in a fate worse than death) is still very much alive today. The temple caretaker/priest often warns pilgrims and tourists alike not to linger too long after dark as strange sounds are known to emanate from the temple. The yoginis are, after all, the most active at night and no one dares to enter the temple after dark for fear of being cursed by these mysterious celestial beings.

 

Temple Exterior

Two Dvarapala guardians (door guardians) are placed on either side of the temple entrance. The Dvarapala on the southern side is a two-armed male figure with ear ornaments and with a lotus creeper on the pedestal. The northern Dvarapala is a wrathful male figure with disheveled hair, protruding stomach and holds a skullcup in his left hand. There is also a lotus creeper on his pedestal.

The exterior of the temple

The exterior of the Hirapur Yogini Temple

Surrounding the temple are Nine Katyayani figures of varying heights, enshrined in niches. They are carved out of sandstone and have a yellow tinge. The Nine Katyayanis (Nine Forms of the Hindu Goddess Parvati) are:

  1. Katyayani No. 1
    A dynamic female figure with an upraised right hand brandishing a curved sword. She is adorned with necklaces and golden bangles called Churis. Two drum-beating male figures are carved on her pedestal.
  2. Katyayani No.2
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her left. She is adorned with golden necklaces, armlets, anklets and bracelets. A smaller male attendant on her right holds a parasol above her head. A jackal and a dog are carved on her pedestal.
  3. Katyayani No.3
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her left. She carries a katari dagger in her right hand and a skullcup in her left. A smaller female attendant on her right holds a parasol over her head. A jackal and a dog are carved on her pedestal.
The Nine Katyayanis. Click on image to enlarge.

Katyayanis #1-#3. Click on image to enlarge.

  1. Katyayani No.4
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her right. She carries a katari dagger in her right hand and a skullcup in her left. She wears an akshamala (garland of beads) on her arm. A smaller female attendant on her right holds a parasol over her head. A jackal and a dog are carved on her pedestal, as is another female attendant who is feeding the dog.
  2. Katyayani No.5
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her left. She is adorned with golden necklaces, armlets, anklets and bracelets. A smaller female attendant on her right holds a parasol above her head. A jackal and a dog are carved on her pedestal.
  3. Katyayani No.6
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her left. She carries a katari dagger in her right hand and a skullcup in her left. On her right is a tree and a smaller female attendant holding a moon crescent over her head. Two dogs are carved on her pedestal.
The Nine Katyayanis. Click on image to enlarge.

Katyayanis #4-#6. Click on image to enlarge.

  1. Katyayanis No. 7 & 8
    A noble female figure with braided hair tied to her left. She carries a katari dagger in her right hand and a skullcup in her left. A smaller female attendant on her right holds a parasol over her head. A jackal and a dog are carved on her pedestal.
  2. Katyayani No.9
    The last and smallest of the Katyayanis is a wrathful nude female figure. She brandishes a curved sword in her right hand and holds a skullcup in her left while cradling what appears to be a bow or staff. Two jackals are carved on her pedestal.
The Nine Katyayanis. Click on image to enlarge.

Katyayanis #7-#9. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Temple Vestibule

Two guardian images stand on either side of the passage. The ferocious male figure on the right, Kala Bhairav, wears a garland of skulls around his neck and snake anklets. He has a sunken belly, disheveled hair and an emaciated body. He holds a skullcup in his right hand and stands poised to attack the enemy. Underneath him are a jackal and two male attendants holding katari daggers and skullcups.

The other male figure on the left, Bikal Bhairav, is similar to the first but with a few minor differences. He holds a severed head in his left hand and beneath him, an attendant drinks blood while the other holds two skullcups.

The two guardians of the temple. Click on image to enlarge.

The two guardians of the temple. Click on image to enlarge.

 

The Yogini Images

60 yogini figures are housed in the niches along the inner walls of the circular Hirapur yogini temple.

  1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika
    She is four-armed standing in the sensual Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) upon a corpse that represents an obstacle. She possesses the braided hair of a noble woman and wears various golden ornaments like necklaces, bracelets, anklets and so forth.
  2. Tara
    She is two-armed standing on a corpse, leaning towards her right and with her left leg outstretched. Her braids of hair are tied to her left in a style that is known as Kesabandha. She wears golden ornaments similar to Yogini Maya.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Tara. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Narmada
    She is two-armed standing on an elephant and wears a garland of skulls around her neck along with various ornaments. She carries a skullcup in her left hand near her mouth and is partaking of the divine nectar/blood within. Her braids of hair are tied to her right.
  2. Yamuna
    She is four-armed and stands in the pratyalidha pose or leaning towards her right. Her mount is a large tortoise and her curly hair is in the Jatamandala style (rising over her head). She carries a skullcup in her upper right hand.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Narmada. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Yamuna. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Shanti / Kanti / Laxmi / Manada
    She is two-armed and stands atop a lotus in full bloom. She has braids of hair over her head and wears various golden ornaments along with Naga Keyura (serpent armlets). She wears a skirt of peacock feathers.
  2. Vriddhi / Kriya / Varuni
    She is two-armed and her braided hair is tied to her left. She stands in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) upon a pedestal of waves suggesting that she is standing atop the ocean.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Shanti / Kanti / Laxmi / Manada. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Vriddhi / Kriya / Varuni. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Ajita / Gauri / Ksemankari
    She is four-armed and stands upon an alligator. Her braided hair is in a chignon and she wears various golden ornaments. She stands in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture).
  2. Aindri / Indrani
    She is two-armed and stands in the Pratyalidha pose (leaning towards her left) upon an elephant mount. Her braided hair is in a chignon and she wears various golden ornaments on her head and body.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Ajita / Gauri / Ksemankari. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Aindri / Indrani. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Varahi
    She is four-armed and has the face of a boar. Standing on top of a buffalo, she carries a skullcup with her upper left hand and cradles a bow in her left arms.
  2. Ratnavira / Padmavati
    She is two-armed and has a wrathful expression. She stands upon the hood and body of a serpent. She wears a garland of skulls and an Alaka hair ornament. She wields a sword with her right hand and her braided hair is in a chignon.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Varahi. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Ratnavira / Padmavati. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Murati / Ostragreeba
    She is four-armed and has the face of a monkey. She stands atop a long-necked camel in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture).
  2. Vaishnavi
    She is two-armed and possesses a graceful face. Her curling hair is adorned with a Sarpa Mukuta and she wears various golden ornaments. She rides on a garuda.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Murati / Ostragreeba. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Vaishnavi. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Virupa / Kalaratri / Panchavarahi
    She is two-armed and has a graceful figure with beautiful braids of hair over her head. She stands smiling atop a boar in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture).
  2. Vadyaroopa
    She is two-armed with braids of hair over her head. She stands in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) atop a drum.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Virupa / Kalaratri / Panchavarahi. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Vadyaroopa. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Charchika
    She is two-armed and stands in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) atop a curly-haired male figure crouching on the ground. He holds a lotus stem in his right hand and a katari dagger is tucked at his waist.
  2. Marjari / Betali
    She is four-armed and stands in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) on a fish. Her hair is braided over her head. She wears a garland of skulls along with other golden ornaments.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Charchika. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Marjari / Betali. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Chinnamastaka
    She is four-armed and stands on top of a severed head. She holds a bow in one of her left hands and stands in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture). Her hair is braided into a chignon.
  2. Vrisabhanana / Bindhya Basini
    She is two-armed and has a wrathful buffalo face. She has disheveled hair (Jatamandal) and stands on a flat-roofed house or cave with a hole in the middle.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Chinnamastaka. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Vrisabhanana / Bindhya Basini. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Jalakamini
    She is two-armed and stands atop a large frog. Her braided hair is tied to her right and her ornaments and clothing are decorative. She stands in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture).
  2. Ghatavara
    She is two-armed and stands in a dancing posture atop a lion. She holds an elephant hide over her head.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Jalakamini. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Ghatavara. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Vikarali / Kakarali
    She is a two-armed graceful figure standing atop a dog. Her braided hair is tied to her right in the Kesabandha style and her right foot is held tightly by both hands and placed on top of her left thigh. She appears to be adjusting an anklet.
  2. Saraswati
    She is four-armed and stands atop a giant serpent. She has a strange moustache and twirls the end of it with one of her left hands. She carries a stringed musical instrument called a tumuru off her shoulder and has intricate braids of hair.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Vikarali / Kakarali. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Saraswati. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Birupa
    She is two-armed and stands atop a wavy pedestal. Her hair is braided and she stands in the Dwibhanga posture (two-curved bodily posture).
  2. Kauveri
    She is two-armed and stands in a dancing pose upon seven Ratna Kalasas (jewels) on a fully bloomed lotus. Her hair is braided in the Kesabandha style and is ornamented by mukuta and kirita. She is adorned with various golden ornaments.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Birupa. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Kauveri. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Bhalluka
    She is two-armed with a boar’s face and her hair is raised in the style of Jatamandal. She stands atop a platform of lotus creepers and holds a damaru in her right hand.
  2. Narasimhi / Simhamukhi
    She is four-armed and has the face of a lioness. Her mane-like hair is in the style of Jatamandal and she holds a pot-like object in her lower hands. She dances atop a platform of five flowers and leaves.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Bhalluka. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Narasimhi / Simhamukhi. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Biraja
    She is a graceful two-armed figure with her braided hair tied to her right. She stands atop a lotus bud with leaves in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture).
  2. Vikatanana
    She is two-armed with a wrathful expression and protruding lips. Her curly matted hair is in the style of Sarpa Mukuta.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Biraja. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Vikatanana. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Mohalaxmi
    She is two-armed and stands atop a lotus in full bloom. She wears an unusual garland of snakes known as Sarpamala and holds a vajra in her right hand and a shield in her left. Her hair is braided to her right in the Kesabandha style.
  2. Kaumari
    She is a graceful two-armed figure standing atop a peacock while holding an akshamala (garland of beads) in her right hand and a shield in her left. She wears golden ornaments just like the other yoginis. Her hair is braided to her right in the Kesabandha style and she stands in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture).
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Mohalaxmi. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Kaumari. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Mahamaya
    As the presiding yogini of the temple, she is slightly larger than the other yoginis enshrined here. She has 10 arms and stands atop a lotus in full bloom. A squarish Shakthi Peetha, representing a holy place of cosmic power, is below her feet. She is adorned with golden ornaments including necklaces, anklets, armlets and a bejewelled girdle. The locals know the temple as Mahamaya Temple, which is named after her.
  2. Usa / Rati
    She is a two-armed figure with a wrathful expression and upraised curly hair known as Jatamandal. She stands in a bended knee pose upon a pedestal that depicts an archer holding a bow and arrow in hand, ready to shoot.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Mahamaya. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Usa / Rati. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Karkari
    She is a two-armed graceful lady standing on a crab. Her braids of hair are tied to her left in the Kesabandha style. She stands regally in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) and wears various golden ornaments.
  2. Sarpasha / Chittala
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture). She has the face of a snake and is adorned with various golden ornaments. The pedestal upon which she stands is broken and it is therefore uncertain what mount she rides on.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Karkari. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Sarpasha / Chittala. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Yosha
    She is two-armed and stands in the Tribangha pose (three-curved bodily posture) on a cot with four legs. She has elaborate braided hair in the style of Jatamukuta, adorned with Kirita and Mukuta ornaments.
  2. Aghora / Vaivasvati
    She is a two-armed figure with a wrathful expression and bulging eyes. She stands atop a horned goat-like animal and her hair is raised over her head. She stands in the sensual Dvibhanga posture (two-curved bodily posture)
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Yosha. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Aghora / Vaivasvati. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Bhadrakali / Rudrakali
    She is a two-armed figure standing on a crow. Her braided hair looks like flames and she carries a sword in her right hand. Her clothes have many intricate designs and she stands in the straight Samabangha pose.
  2. Matangi / Shitala / Vainayaki / Ganeshani / Gajanana
    She is a two-armed, elephant-faced pot-bellied dakini. Her mount is a donkey and she has Jatamukuta-styled hair.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Bhadrakali / Rudrakali. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Matangi / Shitala / Vainayaki / Ganeshani / Gajanana. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Bindhyabalini
    She is a two-armed figure with carefully braided hair tied to her right. She stands in the Pratyalidha pose (right knee bent) on a rat and holds a bow and arrow, poised to shoot.
  2. Abhaya / Veera Kumari
    She is a four-armed figure standing in a dancing pose upon a scorpion. Her upper arms are raised. Her carefully braided hair is in the Jatamukuta style and she wears various golden ornaments all over her body.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Bindhyabalini. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Abhaya / Veera Kumari. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Maheswari
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) atop a bull. Her braided hair is tied to her right in the refined Kesabandha manner and she wears many golden ornaments.
  2. Kamakshi / Ambika
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the bent knee pose on two wheels, below which is a mongoose. Her hair is braided and tied to her right in the Kesabandha style. She holds a damaru in her upper right hand and her two lower hands are on her knees.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Maheswari. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Kamakshi / Ambika. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Kamayani
    She is a two-armed figure and stands in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) atop a rooster. Her braided hair is tied to her right in the Kesabandha style and she is adorned with various golden ornaments.
  2. Ghatabari
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) on a lion. She has curly hair tied up with various ornaments in a style known as Karanda Mukuta.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Kamayani. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Ghatabari. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Stutee
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) on a Haladi Kathua, a pot for turmeric paste. Her braided hair is adorned with flowers and other ornaments. She stands next to a flower vase that is placed on a pedestal.
  2. Kali
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) on a male figure. He has various ornaments like Kirita and Mukuta along with a third eye, and is usually identified as Lord Shiva. Her hair is braided and she carries a trident in her right hand.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Stutee. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Kali. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Uma
    She is a four-armed figure standing on a bed of lotus flowers. Her braided hair is tied up with Kirita and Mukuta in a style known as Jatamukuta. She carries a naga weapon in her upper left hand and her lower left hand is in the Abhaya mudra, representing fearlessness.
  2. Narayani
    She is a two-armed graceful figure standing with her right leg bent and left leg outstretched on an earthen pot with a conical lid. Her left hand is placed over a wine keg and she brandishes a sword in her right. She wears a tiara and is adorned with various ornaments. Her carefully braided hair is in the Kesabhanda style.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Uma. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Narayani. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Samudra
    She is a two-armed figure with her braided hair tied to her left. She wears a tiara on her head and other ornaments on her body. She stands upon a conch shell in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture).
  2. Brahmani
    She has four-arms, three faces and stands on a book. Her carefully braided hair is ornamented with Kirita and Mukuta in the Jatamukuta style. The sacred thread and various other ornaments adorn her body. A decorative lion with beads in its mouth is carved at the left end of her pedestal.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Samudra. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Brahmani. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Jwalamukhi
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Dwibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) upon an eight-legged pedestal. She has unusually long ears that are raised. She has two long knots of matted hair hanging from both sides of her head.
  2. Agneyi
    She is two-armed and stands on a ram. She brandishes a sword in her right hand, ready to strike, and wears various ornaments. Her body is surrounded by an aureole of fire.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Jwalamukhi. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Agneyi. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Aditi
    She is two-armed and stands in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) upon a parrot. Her carefully braided hair is arranged in a chignon on top of her head.
  2. Chandrakanti
    She is two-armed and stands in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) upon a wooden four-legged cot. Her carefully braided hair is tied to her right in the Kesabhanda style. She wears various ornaments.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Aditi. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Chandrakanti. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Vayubega
    She is a two-armed graceful figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) upon a female yak. Her carefully braided hair is tied in a chignon over her head. She is adorned with various golden ornaments.
  2. Chamunda
    She is a powerful four-armed figure standing in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) upon a musk deer. She is unclothed with a skeletal body and flaccid dangling breasts. She wears a garland of skulls and holds a lion skin over her head with her upper hands. Her lower left hand holds a decapitated human head and her lower right hand holds a katari dagger.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Vayubega. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Chamunda. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Murati
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) upon a horned deer. Her hair is flared like the tongues of flames and her body is adorned with various ornaments.
  2. Ganga
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) upon a Makara (water monster). Her carefully braided hair is tied on her head in a chignon and she is adorned with various ornaments. She holds a petiole of lotuses in her upper left hand and a naga noose in her lower left hand.
1. Maya / Bahurupa / Chandika. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Murati. Click on image to enlarge

2. Tara. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Ganga. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Dhumavati / Tarini
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) on a duck. Her braided hair is tied on her head and she holds a winnowing fan in both hands.
  2. Gandhari
    She is a two-armed figure standing in the Samabhanga pose (upright posture) upon a horse. Her carefully braided hair is tied to her left and a Kadamba tree is in the background.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Dhumavati / Tarini. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Gandhari. Click on image to enlarge

Apart from the 60 yogini figures housed in the niches along the inner walls of the Hirapur temple, an additional eight figures (four yoginis and four bhairavs) are enshrined in the four pillars of the Chandi Mandap (central altar).

3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Ajita. Click on image to enlarge

  1. Sarva Mangala
    This carving is missing and there is speculation that it was moved to the Yamuna Kuda near the Kuakhai River. However, iconographic studies of the statues there do not match the ones from this temple.
  2. Ajita
    She is a fearsome four-armed figure standing in the Tribhanga pose (three-curved bodily posture) upon a stag. Her braided hair looks like flames on her head.
  3. Surya Putri
    She is a four-armed figure standing in the Dvibhanga pose (two-curved bodily posture) on a galloping horse. She wears a kirita ornament in her hair and various other ornaments on her body. She carries a bow and arrow and plucks another arrow from the quiver over her shoulder.
  4. Vayu Veena
    She is a two-armed figure standing in a dancing posture upon a black buck. She is adorned with various golden ornaments and wears elaborate earrings known as Kapa. Her hair is braided to her right. There are two vases at the sides of her pedestal.
3. Narmada. Click on image to enlarge.

Yogini Surya Putri. Click on image to enlarge

[#4] Click to enlarge

Yogini Vayu Veena. Click on image to enlarge

 

The Four Bhairavs

  1. Bhairav No. 1
    This is the only standing Bhairav in the temple’s inner sanctum. He is in the southeast corner of the Chandi Mandap and possesses only one leg. Thus he is known as Ekapada Bhairav or Ajaik Pada Bhairav. He is also called Urdhow Linga, and his secret organ is erect and pointing upwards. He has a halo and stands on a lotus in full bloom. He wears a kirita hair ornament on his head, a garland of skulls, as well as snake bracelets and anklets. He holds a sword, a shield and the backbone of a fish. Two attendants equipped with swords and shields are carved on his pedestal.
  2. Bhairav No. 2
    He is a ten-armed figure sitting in the Viswapadmasana posture. His secret organ is erect and pointing upwards. He holds a garland of beads, a skullcup and a drum in his hands and wears a kirita hair ornament. Two flying dakinis are depicted over his halo and on his pedestal, there are armed dakinis carrying conch shells and skullcups.
Bhairav #1. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #1. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #2. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #2. Click on image to enlarge.

  1. Bhairav No. 3
    He is a ten-armed figure sitting in the Viswapadmasana posture. His secret organ is erect and pointing upwards. He wears a kirita hair ornament and holds a damaru, a trident, a shield and a garland of beads in his hands. Two flying dakinis are depicted over his halo and on his pedestal, there are female attendant dakinis with terrifying expressions and carrying skullcups.
  2. Bhairav No. 4
    He is a ten-armed figure sitting in the Viswapadmasana posture. His secret organ is erect and pointing upwards. He wears a kirita hair ornament and holds a damaru and a garland of beads in his hands. Two flying dakinis are depicted over his halo and on his pedestal, there is a male attendant holding up his foot and a female attendant wielding a sword and a skullcup.
Bhairav #3. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #3. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #4. Click on image to enlarge.

Bhairav #4. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Getting There

The Hirapur yogini temple is off the beaten track. It is located in the hamlet of Hirapur on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, the capital city of Odisha state in eastern India. The nearest railway station is 5.9km away at Bhubaneswar. It is also accessible by domestic and international flight via Biju Patnaik International Airport, located 10.5km away from the temple.

Click here for the location pin of the temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Click here for the location pin of the temple. Click on image to enlarge.

At the time of writing, there are no tours or bus services to the Hirapur yogini temple. Visitors can get to the temple by hiring a taxi or a private car. Two routes from the city lead to the temple, both of which converge around half a kilometre from the temple itself along a semi-sealed road.

The first route is via the Bhubaneswar – Puri Road. Upon seeing the Dhauli Stupa, be on the lookout for a distinctive board that shows further directions to the temple.

The second route is more convenient and begins on Tankapani Road from Ravi -Talkies Square (RTS). After 600 metres, you will pass the Rajarani Temple on your right, then the Bhaskareshwar Temple on your left after travelling a further 3 kilometres or so. You will then pass the Megheshwar Temple on your left after driving another 1.5 kilometres and then the Sai Temple, also on your left another 2 kilometres down the road. Travel 2 to 3 kilometres through the fields and head towards the Gangua River. Cross the bridge over the river and take the immediate right. Keep following the road signs until you arrive at the temple.

19bgh_Overview

 

When to Visit

The best time to visit the Hirapur yogini temple is at 9am in the morning. The morning pujas would have finished by this time and temple guides are readily available. Evenings are also a pleasant time to visit. Coming in the afternoon is not recommended as the hot and humid climate can be overwhelming.

It is recommended to avoid visiting during the monsoon season which runs from June to September as there may be flooding.

 

What Visitors Say

64 Yoginis Extraordinarily Exquisite

Veiled in secrecy, this beautiful Yogini Temple is off the map and not easily found. For the truly dedicated! On the outskirts of the temple city of Bhubaneshwar. Unmarred by commercialism in the country amidst paddy fields, a small circular temple, roofless, open to the sky, with inner niches for the finely carved 64 Yoginis. Sensual bodies, some with non human heads, gracefully poised icons about two feet high, each niche is a miniature shrine. The presiding deity is Mahamaya – honoured with Puja by the priests. The smallest Yogini temple yet the power of the circle is immensely inspiring. A unique and mysterious experience. The potency of the Yoginis tangible and humbling.

UshkaDevi from Scarborough, Western Cape, South Africa

A Superb Experience

The visit to the temple gave us a feeling of peace and serenity which we couldn’t find in Lingaraj temple or Puri Jagannath temple. The temple is surrounded by a well maintained garden and it is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the city in a village called Hirapur. You have to hire a taxi to reach there but worth a visit. There is a green field behind the temple which calms your nerves. You can hire a guide (there are 2) if you need them for a paltry sum of Rs.50 but it’s worth it.

Priya B from New Delhi, India

Best Kept Secret of Bhubaneswar

Well, if there is one place where you could get away from Bhubaneswar and just relax in the countryside, Chausath Yogini temple area in Hirapur. Though it used to be far from the city at one time, now with its expanding boundaries the village of Hirapur is getting closer to Bhubaneswar. However the temple of 64 Yoginis has maintained its serenity and uniqueness. One of the four Hypaethral in the country this temple has no roof, circular and is associated with Yogini and Tantra. A guard from ASI, if present will explain to you about its importance or offer you to buy a book which has been written on the Temple. One can spend some good time in the temple and I find it really relaxing to sit on the platform facing the temple. One can also take a walk around the temple which has paddy fields and beautiful water bodies offering a picturesque surrounding. The road approaching the temple has a canal running along & can be refreshing to drive to or away from the temple. Close to the Temple is Dhauli Stupa and visitors can combine both destinations with a Lingaraj temple visit to make a half day tour in Bhubaneswar.

DurgeshSingh from Bhubaneswar, India

Fascinating Temple for History, Architecture and Mythology Enthusiasts

For someone who has always been intimidated by ritualistic worshiping and mystical powers of our female deities, Chausath Yogini is a slightly unnerving place to visit.

But then again, for someone curious about history, architecture and all things heritage, Chausanth Yogini Temple is a delight to explore. This hypaethral (roof-less) shrine has niches that houses the carvings of 64 yoginis – Goddess Durga’s demi-goddess forms.

Besides the many popular jogini forms, there’s the lesser known Ganesharani or Vinayaki (Ganesha’s female energy) and the presiding deity, Mahamaya – after whom the temple is also known as the Mahamaya Temple.

After the Chausanth Yogini Temple at Khajuraho, this was the second such temple that I got to explore at close quarters. While the one at Khajuraho is in dilapidated condition, this one in Hirapur, a hamlet in Khurda district is well maintained and still active as a temple.

The temple is just a few kms outside Bhubaneswar and can be easily accessed by taxi/cab.

Ragini P from New Delhi, India

 

Recommended Videos

 

Chausath Yogini Temple at Hirapur (Part 1)

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Chausath64YoginiTemple.mp4

 

Chausath Yogini Temple at Hirapur (Part 2)

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Backpacking through History Ep 5: Hirapur

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The Cult of Chausath Yogini

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Transcript of ‘The Cult of Chausath Yogini’

Monalisa Behera in conversation with Dr. Nilima Chitgopekar, New Delhi, 2017

Monalisa Behera: How does one introduce a lay man to the concept of yogini? What is a yogini?

Nilima Chitgopekar: The term Yogini has got a huge semantic dimension because it is used in various ways. A yogini, it could be a goddess, it could be a human being, it could be somebody who is adept at yoga, it could be somebody who is just accompanying Shiva. So there are many dimensions to it, but the way I would introduce to a lay person is that basically I would say that this is a cult or a sect which is absolutely esoteric, which had disappeared for the longest time, it had vanished. Publicly nobody knew about it, and then the temples and the shrines were rediscovered in the 19th century to late 19th century, which are just absolutely fascinating, because they don’t go by any trend or any kind of module, or any kind of rules and regulations of the previous Hindu Brahmanical shrines. They seem to be completely wild. They don’t seem to follow Vastu Shastra for instance. They just are completely unusual to look at.

MB: How does one identify a yogini?

NC: You see, identification actually where the shrines are concerned, see architecturally you can immediately identify these shrines, because they have certain very peculiar architectural characteristics. One of them for instance is that they are hypaethral, hypaethral is a term used in architecture for being open to the skies, i.e. roofless. So they are absolutely without any roof at all. And another feature is that they are either circular (maximum ones are circular), and we have some which are rectangular. The icons or the statues whatever you call them, they are sixty four in number. But even that is not steady, that is not constant. There can be sixty four, they can be forty two, they can be eighty one. We have found temples of varying different numbers, but somehow this term has become generic, so even if there are eighty one yoginis in a shrine they are still called the chausath yoginis.

IMG_4178

MB: Is there a yogini typology?

NC: The yogini typology, in the years that I have been studying it is that they are more or less always shown independent of a male consort, independent of a male deity. We are so accustomed to seeing goddesses within Hinduism shown with their male deity, and especially in the ancient times, like Lakshmi is shown with Vishnu, and Parvati is shown with Shiva. Even very often when you go to a shrine you will see the two of them as pairs. But in this context we don’t see any male consort standing with the yoginis. In fact the yoginis are one after the other, are placed together and sixty four of them or eighty four of them. If at all there is a male god, there is Bhairava who is shown in the centre of some of the temples, not all of the temples. So there is an association but there is one Bhairava, sometimes places even a century or two after the making of the shrine. So what I would say the main typology of the yogini goddess is that she is independent, she is autonomously placed – even architecturally, sculpturally she is shown on her own. Of course she has all the attributes for being divine, she is multi-limbed – she can have four heads, she can have many hands. Also another feature is that she is very often therianthrophic i.e. she has the head of an animal and the body of a human being.

MB: Visually what differentiates a yogini from other female divinities?

NC: This would be one of the main features that she is shown independently on her own along with many others like her. Each one is different from the other but the size like they are life-size even when they are seated they are three feet and above (most of them), some of them are of course smaller – the ones we find in Odisha in Hirapur. So the multiplicity, they have to be shown in groups. They are group divinities, the yoginis will always be worshipped in a group, like I said 64, 42, 81. It is not unusual in the Hindu Brahmanical context, we do have group divinities like the Sapta Matrikas which predate the yoginis. And in fact the sapta matrikas are very often included within the yoginis – over the list of the yoginis when they are depicted, you do have Varahi, you have Aindri.

So one is that they have to be in groups and second is just to look at them, they are thrilling to look at. They are so voluptuous, they are so beautiful. They can be saumya, in a very placid and pacific kind of way, depicted very nicely, very calmly. Or they can be absolutely rudra, ugra, or very frightening to look at – with fangs and with skulls everywhere. So they have these different ways of being paradoxical that we are so familiar with even among our goddesses. Because even after all if you look at Kali also, she is the mother, she is Kali Maa but she is shown so fiercely. So this paradoxical nature of the goddess you see very clearly in the yoginis.

MB: How would you say the yoginis blur the boundary between the human and the divine?

NC: Actually when we look at the yoginis, I mean if you go to the yogini temples and the shrines and ask the villagers there, what are these yoginis? Then the stories come up where it seems they are perceived as being human initially and then they become divine. For instance there is this very funny story that in the 1800s, a British man with a gun was chasing some village damsels and when he chased them they got so scared that they ran up to the mountain and prayed to Bhairava, and he almost caught them, but because they prayed they turned into stone. So that they were sixty four of them and they were running away from this British person. So these stories come up which show that there is a correlation.

Not only this kind of a story but even when you go into Odisha and interview the people there, they feel that the human beings can become yoginis; they have certain powers, certain supernatural powers, certain women can have these powers and become yoginis, and then cast spells on men and get rid of all kinds of calamities as well. Yes, there is a connection; there is a sliding between the yoginis and the human adepts. And also the yoginis are supposed to be the women who help the tantric practitioner; a human woman will become a yogini who will help the tantric practitioner to achieve moksha. So there is a very strong human element as well as divine.

I mean we are not calling them ‘mata’, we are not calling them ‘maa’, we are not calling them ‘devi’, and so they clearly have had a different role to play within Hinduism, within the Brahmanical faith. We can call them semi-divine. We do hear that they helped Durga, that they were attendants of Durga. They were polymorphous, their roles were changing all the time. They had different roles to play not only within the texts that we find them in but even in the different regions, they are region-specific.

IMG_4171

MB: Can it be argued that construction of temples dedicated to yoginis marked their materialisation into popular devotional theism from a distinctly esoteric cult? Did the proliferation of Chausath yogini temples lead to the absorption of local goddesses?

NC: I don’t think that the transfer was there, I think it is mainly to do with the fact that these probably were like folk deities, village deities – like you have these gramdevatas, these kshetrapalas, you have people who are protecting your village, protecting a region; now those have been included in this yogini cult which are getting Brahminised. So they are getting included within Saptamatrakas, they are getting included with different forms of Durga, and the number is increasing. And so the folk culture is coming into the Brahmanical culture – that is one evidence. And the shrines are made with a lot of cost, they are expensive to make those shrines. Royalty, the richer community, the elite may have been involved in this. That is how I see the shrines coming up at a particular period of time like from c. 9th to c. 12th century.

MB: What could have been the reason that they disappeared suddenly?

NC: I think when you look at what many of the Marxist historians have said, historians like R.S. Sharma, what they have said is that this was the bringing in of the tribal belt. When the Brahmins went into the tribal belts with land grants being given in different areas like in Madhya Pradesh, like in Odisha where you find most of the temples. Then the Brahmins going in sort of adopted or took over many of the deities that belonged to the tribes. So there was a mixture between the Brahmanical and the non-Brahmanical, however you want to call it Vedic – non-Vedic, the tribal and the priestly. Once this kind of assimilation took place, which may have started at around 8th century, it went on, it is possible that people didn’t need them anymore. And also actually, let me put it like this – many scary stories were associated with the yoginis. When you look at their temples, their shrines are always a little outside the main city or the main town. This could be due to various factors, one of the factors may be that since it was so esoteric so many of the initiations, the rites, the rituals; the practitioners did not want everyone to get to know about them.

MB: Thank you! That was very enlightening.

NC: Thank you

Source: https://www.sahapedia.org/the-cult-of-chausath-yogini

 

Recommended Reading (Free Download)

Sixty Four Yogini Temple Hirapur by Suresh Balabantaray. Click on image to enlarge.

Click to download book in PDF format.

Sixty Four Yogini Temple Hirapur

by Suresh Balabantaray

Click to download

 

The Ancient Mythology and Iconography of the 64 Hindu Yoginis

by Neha Mubeen

Click to download

 

Quick Facts

  • The Hirapur Yogini Temple is also known as Chausathi Jogini Mandir.
  • It is a Chausath yogini temple; as such, the yoginis are all depicted as individual goddesses, independent of their consorts.
  • No two Chausath yogini temples have the exact same set of yoginis.
  • The Hirapur temple is the smallest yogini temple and is also believed to be one of the oldest.
  • It is the only Chausath yogini temple which has sculptures on its outer walls. These sculptures are of the nine Katyayanis (female guardians).
  • The temple has 63 yogini sculptures within. The 64th sculpture is missing.

 

Conclusion

Hirapur and many other forgotten yogini temples arose during the height of the proliferation of Tantra within Buddhism and Hinduism. As can be seen in the images above, the rich iconography employed to depict these divinities undeniably belongs to the realm of Tantra, a sacred movement proliferated amongst Hindu and Buddhist yogis, monastics and scholars alike. Therefore, the sixty-four yoginis of these temples are believed to be none other than celestial dakinis in reality .

64yoginistemple079

The rich iconographic language which is still evident in Hirapur is far more identifiable within the Buddhist context. For example, compared to Hinduism, there are more examples of Buddhist divinities possessing similar iconographic traits such as animal faces, animal mounts, the wielding of skullcups and so forth. In fact, there are documented incidents where an originally Buddhist deity was adapted and appropriated into the Hindu pantheon of gods and a prime example of this is Chinnamasta, the Headless Vajrayogini who is now worshipped both within the Hindu and Buddhist traditions.

Ultimately, it is not a matter of whether the sixty-four yoginis are Buddhist in origin or not, but whether the origin of this form of worship is authentic. In the Buddhist context, tracing any practice to a valid source is of utmost importance in order for the practitioner to possess a sense of confidence in the efficacy of the practice. Needless to say, the sixty-four yoginis must have been the result of a pure vision by an attained meditator-yogi or a great master. However, the record of this lineage is now lost and all that is left are the ruins of this once mighty and pervasive lineage and practice.

64yoginistemple086

 

Addendum:

  1. There are many types of dakinis. The word ‘dakini’ denotes a female mystical being that has varying degrees of power. Some dakinis are harmful. Some are mediocre. Some are helpful. Some are spiritual and some are enlightened. There are many types of dakinis. Some are old in appearance. Some are maidens. Some are wrathful, peaceful, scary, gentle and in many colours and sub-colours. They can even come with various animal heads. They can appear in dreams, be holders of secret teachings and be knowledge ladies who bestow wisdom.
  2. In Tantra, the spiritually-awakened dakinis bless the tantric practitioner to achieve high results in their practices. These dakinis can be the entourage of certain deities, protectors or even teachers. They can be teachers themselves and grant instructions to enlightenment or simply higher states of consciousness. Many dakinis are highly attained or even enlightened and they can give teachings and initiations to beings with affinity.
  3. Normally the dakinis gather in the night. When Tsok or a special tantric rite is performed, the dakinis will be invited to enjoy the ritual and offerings. In return they are requested to bless the practitioners to gain high realisations in their meditations. They are requested to protect the practitioners as well.
  4. Some dakini gathering places are only for spiritually-attained beings, so the dakinis will keep others out. Some places are the gathering areas of ordinary dakinis who can be fierce and protective of their ‘properties’. There are many types of places like this. There are 24 main holy places in India where there is a main guardian dakini in each place with hundreds of her entourage. Spiritually-inclined people who meditate in those places are blessed by these dakinis.
  5. These dakinis can also be summoned to one’s meditational place through mantra, mudra, visualisation and or rituals. When they are summoned, they are requested (depending on the ritual) to bless, protect, gather the inner winds or simply to grant blessings.
  6. Generally because the dakinis are more ‘active’ at night because night is associated with female energy and female energy represents supreme wisdom. Therefore these places of gathering of dakinis are sacred. Many tantra practices rely strongly on female wisdom energy, therefore you practise at night to gain wisdom.

I hope this helps. Tsem Rinpoche

 
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About Pastor David Lai

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

David is a lover of Buddhist art and whenever he can, he shares his knowledge of the Dharma with everyone, giving frequent teachings and writing on his blog www.davidlai.me.
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29 Responses to The Sixty-Four Yogini Temple of Hirapur, India

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    Dear friends around the world,

    Many people have asked how to connect with Sacred Diamond Dakini Vajra Yogini without initiation and formal commitments. I have explained how to do so here: https://bit.ly/2JjTTXp

    Any form of Vajra Yogini you worship leads to the same benefit. All her forms are just her wisdom manifesting for different karmic propensities at different time periods.

    Please be blessed with these beautiful pictures of Ucheyma (Severed Head Vajra Yogini) from my personal shrine. Read more on this sacred form.- https://bit.ly/2QghvhS

    May you all be blessed and ascend to Kechara Paradise.

    Humbly, Tsem Rinpoche

    ——————————————————————————

    致世界各地的朋友:

    人们曾无数次问我:如何在没有受灌顶和誓言的情况下,跟殊胜的金刚空行母——金刚瑜伽母结缘。我已经在此文中跟大家解释:https://bit.ly/2JjTTXp

    不管我们供奉以哪种形象示现的金刚瑜伽母,所得的益处是一样的。她以无上智慧,顺应不同时代众生的业力而示现不同形象。

    衷心希望我佛坛上的“乌切玛”(断首金刚瑜伽母)像的这些庄严相片能加持你的心续。更多关于这一殊胜法相的资料,可在此阅读:https://bit.ly/2QghvhS

    祈愿你获得加持,日后能登克切拉净土。

    詹杜固仁波切敬启
    https://video.tsemtulku.com/videouploads/comment-1552837081.mp4


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  3. Pastor Loh Seng Piow on Mar 17, 2019 at 11:36 pm

    Dear friends around the world,

    Many people have asked how to connect with Sacred Diamond Dakini Vajra Yogini without initiation and formal commitments. I have explained how to do so here: https://bit.ly/2JjTTXp

    Any form of Vajra Yogini you worship leads to the same benefit. All her forms are just her wisdom manifesting for different karmic propensities at different time periods.

    Please be blessed with these beautiful pictures of Ucheyma (Severed Head Vajra Yogini) from my personal shrine. Read more on this sacred form.- https://bit.ly/2QghvhS

    May you all be blessed and ascend to Kechara Paradise.

    Humbly, Tsem Rinpoche

    ——————————————————————————

    致世界各地的朋友:

    人们曾无数次问我:如何在没有受灌顶和誓言的情况下,跟殊胜的金刚空行母——金刚瑜伽母结缘。我已经在此文中跟大家解释:https://bit.ly/2JjTTXp

    不管我们供奉以哪种形象示现的金刚瑜伽母,所得的益处是一样的。她以无上智慧,顺应不同时代众生的业力而示现不同形象。

    衷心希望我佛坛上的“乌切玛”(断首金刚瑜伽母)像的这些庄严相片能加持你的心续。更多关于这一殊胜法相的资料,可在此阅读:https://bit.ly/2QghvhS

    祈愿你获得加持,日后能登克切拉净土。

    詹杜固仁波切敬启

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  4. Sunil Gorawara on Feb 26, 2019 at 11:31 am

    Simply superb. Profuse thanks to Pastor Lama for such a illuminating write up. On of the best I have read on this fascinating subject. More of such material. Naman hai.🌷🌷🌷😇🌷🌷🌷

  5. Tsem Rinpoche on Nov 20, 2018 at 2:42 pm

    The Library of Tibetan Works & Archives is in Dharamsala, which is broken into two parts. Upper Dharamsala is where the Dalai Lama’s palace is located with his audience room and main prayer hall. It is also the location of the Dialectics School, Gaden Shartse’s guesthouse, restaurants, tourist hotels and main tourist areas.

    A short ride down takes you to the lower part of Dharamsala where the Tibetan government is located. It is the location of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile, Nechung monastery, the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, the Tibetan arts centre…it’s all in one area. And the reason why it’s split into upper and lower Dharamsala is because the area is mountainous.

    The Library of Tibetan Works and Archives was established by the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government to preserve all the ancient texts – both secular and spiritual – of Tibet and in the process, translate them into various languages like English. This book, Overview of Buddhist Tantra, by Panchen Sonam Drakpa was one of the books translated into English. What’s very interesting is that the book very clearly says that Panchen Sonam Drakpa’s previous life is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, one of the five main disciples of Lama Tsongkhapa. It also says that after that, he was Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen.

    So the book is basically saying that Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, Panchen Sonam Drakpa and Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen – the three Drakpas – are of the same mindstream.

    Now that’s very peculiar because if Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s previous life is Panchen Sonam Drakpa, the renowned composer of 45 volumes of Dharma texts, the abbot of three monasteries AND the 15th Gaden Tripa, the holder of Lama Tsongkhapa’s throne…if that’s the case, how can Panchen Sonam Drakpa take rebirth as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen and become an evil spirit and have a negative mind?

    Prior to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, he was Panchen Sonam Drakpa and before that, he was Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, a heart disciple of Lama Tsongkhapa. How can a heart disciple of Lama Tsongkhapa reincarnate as the erudite master Panchen Sonam Drakpa, and then die and reincarnate as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen…and then Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, due to a bad and negative prayer, become the evil spirit Dorje Shugden? How is that possible? Logically, it’s not.

    What’s incredible is that all of this was printed by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives under the Dalai Lama’s guidance. They contradict themselves because on one hand, the Tibetan leaders say Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit. On the other hand they’re printing a book saying that Panchen Sonam Drakpa, whose later incarnation became Dorje Shugden, is of this illustrious mindstream.

    So how can the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, which is under the auspices of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government, print the translation of a book composed by the previous incarnation of a so-called evil spirit? How can they then say in the book that Panchen Sonam Drakpa’s previous life is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, and his next life was Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen?

    Prior to the Dorje Shugden ban and controversy, everyone in Tibet knew that Dorje Shugden is Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, that Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen is Panchen Sonam Drakpa, and that Panchen Sonam Drakpa is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. The three Drakpas, they are one mindstream emanating again and again to benefit other beings.

    And as we all know, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen became Dorje Shugden so it totally doesn’t make sense to call him an evil spirit, then highlight all of his previous lives as erudite masters, and publish all of this information under their own library. So you can see the contradictions. You can read all of this for yourself in Overview of Buddhist Tantra, which was printed by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives.

    —–

    OVERVIEW OF BUDDHIST TANTRA

    GENERAL PRESENTATION OF THE CLASSES OF TANTRA,
    CAPTIVATING THE MINDS OF THE FORTUNATE ONES

    rgyud sde spyi’i rnam par bzhag pa
    skal bzang gi yid ‘phrog ces bya ba bzhugs so

    BY
    PANCHEN SONAM DRAGPA
    (Pan-chen bSod-nams grags-pa, 1478-1554)

    O Choje Sonam Dragpa Pel! (Chos-rje bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal!)
    In the vast expanse of Your bodhi-mind,
    The mind that the Buddhas have lauded for as many as
    one hundred times,
    You have developed “merit” shining like the sun.
    Through Your skill in learning, debate and writing,
    As illuminating as one hundred thousand sun rays,
    You have developed in You a complete knowledge of
    the entire sutras and tantras,
    Resembling a garden of flowers in full bloom.
    The power of Your speech is like the sun;
    The fame of your name has reached the three realms of
    this world.
    O Sonam Dragpa, the teacher of teachers!
    I bow down at your feet.

    In the vast garden of Your great teachings,
    The intelligent young people gather for
    The ‘six ultimates’ and the ‘four modes of transmission,’
    Just as they are attracted to
    The one hundred thousand types of nectar
    Dripping from a flower of one hundred petals.
    May I be able to experience
    The taste of the secret tantra!

    Panchen Choje Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen Chos-rje bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal), the holder of sutra and Vajrayana teachings, was a master whose outstanding learning and spiritual accomplishments are well known by all the learned ones in Tibet. His first incarnation came in the form of one of the five prestigious disciples of Lord Tsongkhapa (Tsong-kha-pa) and became known as Vinaya Holder (Dulzin) Dragpa Gyaltsen (Gragspa rgyal-mtshan). Then came Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal), the author of the present text. The next was Nagri Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen (mNga’-ris sPrul-sku Grags-pa rgyal-mtshan). In this way, a line of his incarnations, each with the Dragpa (gragspa) surname, followed successively.

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) was born in the 14th century in Tsetang (rTsed-thang) in the Lhoka (Lho-kha) region of Central Tibet. He entered the great seat of learning, Sera Thekchenling (Se-ra theg-chen-gling) monastic university, where he became the personal disciple of spiritual master Donyo Dangden (Dhon-yod dang-ldan) and His Holiness the Second Dalai Lama Gedun Gyatso (dGe-‘dun rgya-mtsho). Under them, he studied the entire teachings of sutra, tantra and their commentaries, and became known for his outstanding learning. He also received from them the empowerments, reading transmissions, guides and instructions of the entire body of spiritual training. On becoming the fully blessed one, the Dalai Lama appointed him the abbot of the Loseling (Blo-gsalgling) college, one of the four colleges of Drepung (‘Bras-dpung)- the most prestigious monastic university in Tibet before 1959, with over 10,000 monks on its register. He continued to be the abbot of this college for the next six years; and after him the tenure for each of his successors in this position was fixed for a period of six years, a rule that is followed even today.

    He was then appointed the head of the Gelugpa (dGe-lugs-pa) order, the throne holder of Gaden (dGa’-ldan), thus becoming the 15th regent of Lord Tsongkhapa (Tsong-khapa), the second Buddha. In his eulogy to him, Khedrub Gelek Pelsang (mKhas-grub dGe-legs dpal- bzang) says:

    O Lama, the second successor of the Unsubduable One,
    The regent of the Lord of Dharma,
    You are the one who made the virtuous qualities thrive;
    You are the one who ascended to the golden throne uplifted
    by the fearless lions.
    May Your success thrive forever!

    He continued to be the throne holder for the next seven years, during which time he promoted the spread of Lord Tsongkhapa’s (Tsong-kha-pa) precious teachings, the Gelug (dGe-lugs) tradition, across the land in all directions. He also paid special attention to the practice of monastic rules and the learning and meditation of Buddhism in the monasteries such as Sera (Se-ra), Drepung (‘Bras-spungs), Kyomolung (sKyo-mo-lung), Phagmo Chode (Phag-mo chos-sde), Nyeding (Nye-sdings), Ödna (’Od-sna) and Chöde Rinchen (Chos-sde rin-chen) etc. and improved them to a great extent. He taught the Third Dalai Lama Sonam Gyatso (bSod-nams rGya-mtsho) as the latter’s spiritual master. It was from him that the Dalai Lama received the name Sonam (bSod-nams).

    His contributions in the literary field are enormous; and, indeed, they are the most valuable of all his contributions. Tsongkhapa (Tsong-kha-pa) has rightly said:

    Of all one’s deeds,
    The ‘deeds of speech’ are the most valuable.

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) was a person with an extraordinary talent for teaching, debate and writing. In his colophon to Bu mey chi don zab don sel wey dron mey (dBu ma’i spyi don zab don gsal ba’i sgron me), he wrote:

    In the field of teaching, I am [next to none!] Knowing that
    I would outdo them in this field, Arya Asanga and his
    brother transmigrated into another realm.

    In the field of debate, I am [next to none!] Knowing that
    I would find out the areas they had contradicted and
    that I would examine them and put forth my arguments,
    the logician Dignaga (Digh-naga) and Dharmakirti tactfully
    bypassed me.

    In the field of writing, I am [next to none!] [In my eyes,]
    Arya-sura was just good at spreading the works, which
    are like ‘disputes~ between an insect and a field.’

    I am the learned man. Peerless in the field of teaching,
    debate and writing!

    For some this passage might sound utterly nonsensical, but the most learned master of our age, the talented teacher, logician and writer, the late tutor to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Yongdzin Trijang Dorjechang (Yongs-‘dzin Khri-byang rDorje-‘Chang), said: “Now, some people of our time, who consider themselves learned scholars, think that this is utter nonsense; but they are wrong.”

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) wrote over 45 volumes of books dealing with many different subjects, such as the commentaries on the sutras and tantras, the saddhana manuals of the tutelary deities, history, religious history and so forth. Among these, one that is very important for all who wish to learn and meditate on the path-of the practical aspect of Buddhism in general and that of Vajrayana in particular is the Leg shey gyu de chi nam par shagpa kelsang gi yi trod (Legs bshad rgyud sde spyi’i rnam par bzhag pa skal bzang gi yid ‘phrod). In this book, he has explained precisely how the four tantras differ from one another. He has also fully described the stages of the two spontaneous path practices of the Vajrayana tradition, dealing with the ‘six ultimates’ and the ‘four modes of transmission’, thus interpreting without mistake the intention of Adhi-Buddha Vajradhara.

    May the reprint of this text, which the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives is publishing herewith, bring peace and happiness in this world!

    Professor Nawang Jinpa
    St. Joseph’s College
    Darjeeling
    January 24th, 1996

    PSD1

    PSD2

    PSD3

    PSD4

    PSD5

  6. Pastor Shin Tan on Nov 20, 2018 at 3:53 am

    All enlightened beings are worthy of homage and worship. They are the best beings to take refuge in and we should offer them our prayers as we can put our full confidence in them. Of all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, I personally find that Manjushri is extremely important. This is because what keeps us in samsara (cyclic rebirth) is our total ignorance and misunderstanding of the reality of existence. What is necessary to penetrate this deep ignorance that keeps us bound in a perpetual state of reincarnation is wisdom. We need many types of wisdom which can be acquired by relying on Manjushri as our yidam (meditational deity). By focusing on his meditation, practice, mantra and path we can gain wisdom in order to have the tool to penetrate the reality of existence. Therefore, Manjushri is an extremely important Buddha for us to focus on and take refuge in.

    Tsem Rinpoche

    (Photograph: this is the beautiful outdoor Manjushri statue who is in a teaching pose. He is floating above a koi fish pond nestled among lush greenery in Kechara Forest Retreat, Malaysia)

    每一位觉者都能成为我们朝拜、膜拜的对象。他们是我们至高、至好的皈依,我们应该向他们做祈请,并且对他们生起全然的信念。在众佛菩萨之中,我个人认为文殊菩萨极为重要。这是因为使我们身陷娑婆(轮回)的是我们自身的无明,以及对实相的曲解。智慧是一种必要,它能穿透我们深不见底的无明,那个使我们受困于无止境投生的无明。我们需要多种智慧,而依止文殊菩萨作为我们的本尊,即能使我们成就多种智慧。透过文殊菩萨的观想、修持法门、心咒及修行道路,我们能成就智慧,拥有了知实相的“器具”。故此,专注于文殊菩萨的修持法门、皈依他,对我们而言都极为重要。

    詹杜固仁波切

    (相片:这尊户外文殊菩萨像呈转法轮姿。他被茂密的草木环绕,安坐在马来西亚克切拉禅修林的鱼池之上。)

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  7. Pastor Niral Patel on Oct 28, 2018 at 1:09 am

    A sacred image of the rare form of Vajrayogini known as Ucheyma, the Buddha that shows us the path to eradicate the ego. For this and many other high-resolution images of the enlightened beings to download for free visit: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    digitalucheyma-s

  8. Valentina Suhendra on Oct 26, 2018 at 11:07 am

    Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini) (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): H.H. the 7th Panchen Lama, Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini), Vajra Varnani (green assistant), Vajra Vairocani (yellow assistant), Dorje Shugden and Citipati.

    The central deity is known as Chinnamasta or Dorje Neljorma Ucheyma. Both Chinnamasta (Sanskrit) and Ucheyma (Tibetan) literally mean, ‘She Whose Head is Severed’. The meaning behind her form is to show practitioners that they need to completely remove the grasping and self-identification with the “I” or the ego. Generally, the identity of the self is strongly associated with our face more than any other part of our body. We usually recognise a person when we look at a person’s face. Hence, our self-identification or ego is strongly associated with our face. To show us that this self-identification needs to be overcome on the spiritual path to enlightenment, Vajrayogini uses her ritual chopper to decapitate herself. This is symbolic of her practice eradicating the ego.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini, as she is also known, removes all afflictive mental constructs by removing the root cause – the identification of the self, the ego. We are either attached to or averse to people and circumstances because we have an ego to please, gratify and protect. But in the grander scheme of things, this self-identification with the ‘I’ is illusory and does not really exist. Therefore, Vajrayogini reveals this ultimate truth through the dramatic decapitation of her head and at the same time is still able to live and function. She is able to live due to her direct perception of emptiness and egolessness.

    Contrary to what some people might think, the eradication of the self does not destroy individualism, our personality or make us into a mindless person. In fact, the eradication of the ego makes us become a vibrant and compassionate person, someone that has greater awareness of the suffering of others. In other words, we become much warmer, kinder, forgiving, tolerant, conscientious, generous, contemplative and we are become a joy to be with. The cutting of the ego or the ‘I’ brings us towards awakening our true self, the Buddha nature within.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini has two dakini attendants. From the trunk of her neck, there are three severed blood vessels spurting three jets of blood that flow into the mouths of her own decapitated head that she carries in her left hand and into the mouths of her two attendants. Tsem Rinpoche explained that the three jets of blood represent that her practice purifies the three psychic poisons of ignorance, hatred and desire. In turn, this leads to the attainment of the three bodies of a Buddha – the emanation body, the enjoyment body and the truth body. In other words, the severance of the ego via her tantric path leads to the purification of all delusions and ultimately, the attainment of Buddhahood itself.

    The 7th Panchen Lama, Palden Tenpai Nyima is featured floating above because of his compilation of sadhanas from the ancient Sadhanamala texts. This includes a particular sadhana or collection of prayers, visualisation and mantra focused on Ucheyma. Incidentally, Dorje Shugden in many of his previous lives was a lineage master of the Vajrayogini tantras as well. These previous lives include the likes of the Mahasiddha Naropa and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso. The Lord and Lady of the Charnel Ground, known as Citipati, are one of the main protectors of the Vajrayogini Tantra.

    Last of all, the ascetic meditator engaging in his devotional practices towards Ucheyma in the cemetery represents the ideal environment for tantric practice because such environments invoke deep renunciation towards worldly affairs and attachments. All Buddhist traditions advocate meditating on the bones of the deceased because it reminds us of our mortality and hence, we develop revulsion towards the transient nature of worldly or ordinary existence.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  9. Joy on Oct 26, 2018 at 12:22 am

    Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini) (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): Maitri Kacho (Flying Vajrayogini), Maitri Kacho (One-Leg Up Vajrayogini), Naro Kacho, Sukhasiddhi, Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini), Vajra Varnani (green assistant), Vajra Vairocani (yellow assistant), Citipati, Vajravarahi and Dorje Shugden.

    The central deity is known as Severed Headed Vajrayogini, Chinnamasta or Dorje Neljorma Ucheyma. Both Chinnamasta (Sanskrit) and Ucheyma (Tibetan) literally mean, ‘She Whose Head is Severed’. The meaning behind her form is to show practitioners that they need to completely remove the grasping and self-identification with the “I” or the ego. Generally, the identity of the self is strongly associated with our face more than any other part of our body. We usually recognise a person when we look at a person’s face. Hence, our self-identification or ego is strongly associated with our face. To show us that this self-identification needs to be overcome on the spiritual path to enlightenment, Vajrayogini uses her ritual chopper to decapitate herself. This is symbolic of her practice eradicating the ego.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini removes all afflictive mental constructs by removing the root cause – the identification of the self, the ego. We are either attached to or averse to people and circumstances because we have an ego to please, gratify and protect. But in the grander scheme of things, this self-identification with the ‘I’ is illusory and does not really exist. Therefore, Vajrayogini reveals this ultimate truth through the dramatic decapitation of her head and at the same time is still able to live and function. She is able to live due to her direct perception of emptiness and egolessness.

    Contrary to what some people might think, the eradication of the self does not destroy individualism, our personality or make us into a mindless person. In fact, the eradication of the ego makes us become a vibrant and compassionate person, someone that has greater awareness of the suffering of others. In other words, we become much warmer, kinder, forgiving, tolerant, conscientious, generous, contemplative and we are become a joy to be with. The cutting of the ego or the ‘I’ brings us towards awakening our true self, the Buddha nature within.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini has two dakini attendants. From the trunk of her neck, there are three severed blood vessels spurting three jets of blood that flow into the mouths of her own decapitated head that she carries in her left hand and into the mouths of her two attendants. Tsem Rinpoche explained that the three jets of blood represent that her practice purifies the three psychic poisons of ignorance, hatred and desire. In turn, this leads to the attainment of the three bodies of a Buddha – the emanation body, the enjoyment body and the truth body. In other words, the severance of the ego via her tantric path leads to the purification of all delusions and ultimately, the attainment of Buddhahood itself.

    Severed Headed Vajrayogini is surrounded by some of her other forms, including Naro Kacho, two forms of Maitri Kacho, Sukhasiddhi and Vajravarahi. These forms of Vajrayogini are more commonly practised compared to Severed Headed Vajrayogini and are prevalent in most Tibetan Buddhist lineages. Though they may look different, all forms are indivisible from her true nature and all her practices can lead practitioners to enlightenment. Naro Kacho arose from a vision beheld by the Mahasiddha Naropa, Maitri Kacho from a vision beheld by Maitripa, and Indra Kacho from a vision beheld by Indrabodhi. The Lord and Lady of the Charnel Ground, known as Citipati, are one of the main protectors of the Vajrayogini Tantra.

    Last of all, Dorje Shugden is a protector with special affinity with Vajrayogini practitioners because he arose from an incarnation lineage that includes Naropa and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso who practised and proliferated her Tantra.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  10. Pastor Adeline on Oct 26, 2018 at 12:04 am

    Vajrayogini (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): Naropa, Vajradharma, Hero Vajradharma, Naro Kacho, Maitri Kacho (Flying Vajrayogini), Dorje Shugden and Vajravarahi.

    Vajrayogini is a female tantric Buddha and she has many forms that are derived from various lineages. She mainly embodies the fully enlightened female (shakti) aspect of a Buddha. She belongs to the Mother Tantra classification, which refers to her practice concentrating on the wisdom aspect of the path to Buddhahood. She is also the principal dakini, the compassionate female guides and nurturers of tantric meditation who lead practitioners to enlightenment. In the thangka, the main figure in the middle is Naro Kechari as she arose from the pure vision of the Mahasiddha Naropa.

    In Anuttara (Highest) Yoga Tantra, principal dakinis normally appear in union with a male consort and this can be seen in the cases of deities such as Guhyasamaja, Hevajra, and Kalachakra. In the case of Vajrayogini, she is the principal female Buddha of the Chakrasamvara Tantra and therefore, she is normally in union with Heruka Chakrasamvara. Furthermore, Vajrayogini is also considered a Vajradakini, who are yidams or meditational deities in their own right. Their practices have evolved from the main practices of their consorts, simplifying the otherwise complicated original practice by reducing it to a single-deity meditation without sacrificing the main benefits and features of the original. Hence, Vajradakini practices such as Vajrayogini and Nairatmya are derived from the original Chakrasamvara Tantra and Hevajra Tantra respectively.

    In essence, Vajrayogini is known as “Sarvabuddha-dakini” or the Dakini Who is the Essence of all Buddhas. Her mantra is known as the King of All Mantras as it has the most powerful ability to bless us with spiritual attainments even without any visualisation or meditation. There are 11 Yogas in the generation stage of her practice and a few which have the power of transforming ordinary actions like sleeping, waking and ordinary daily tasks into a collection of merits. Ultimately, her Tantra offers salvation for ordinary practitioners at death with her special promise of guiding practitioners towards Kechara, or the Paradise of the Dakinis, in which we can continue deep practices to become a Buddha without fear, obstacles and interruptions.

    Within Vajrayogini practice, soliciting the blessings of the lama and the lineage master are of paramount importance in order for our practice to bear results. Hence, the lama is visualised as the red Vajradharma with arms crossed at the heart, holding the vajra and bell. The lineage masters are visualised as Hero Vajradharma, holding a damaru and skullcup while cradling a khatvanga. Aside from the main Naro Kechari form, Vajrayogini also appears in the form of Maitri Kechari, who is known as Flying Vajrayogini, and arose from the vision of Maitripa. Another common form is known as Indra Kechari, or Vajravarahi, who arose from the vision of Indrabodhi.

    Last of all, Dorje Shugden is a Dharma protector with a special affinity with Vajrayogini practitioners. This is because he himself arose from an incarnation lineage that includes the likes of Naropa, the progenitor of Naro Kechari practice, and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso who had practised and proliferated her Tantra and is listed as one the lineage masters invoked upon every day by Vajrayogini practitioners.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  11. Pastor Shin Tan on Oct 4, 2018 at 3:48 pm

    Original illustration and text posted by Eric D Hatchell as a reply to H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche’s facebook post on Vajrayogini here: http://bit.ly/VYogini0001

    The Dākiṇī with the Essence of all Buddhas, Vajrayoginī

    Her practice includes methods to end the otherwise repetitive states of Bardo and rebirth, by transforming the process into a journey, which may lead to full enlightenment. In preparation for which, Vajrayoginī further offers the omnipresent ability to reconstruct the nature of the most, mundane everyday experiences, such that they may reveal higher destinations, via the spiritual paths she may choose to reveal. [1] Vajrayoginī being defined as, “The Dākiṇī who is the Essence of all Buddhas”, [2] is amplified by scholar Miranda Shaw when she implied that this deity is no less than, the supreme nature of the very Tantric pantheon. No male Buddha, including her divine consort, Heruka-Cakrasaṃvara, further advances her in metaphysical implications. [3]

    Vajrayoginī’s sādhanā originates from India circa 10/12th C, [4] when summoned as Heruka-Cakrasaṃvara’s Yab-Yum consort [5], with later forms including Vajrayoginī as “Solitary Hero”, she may be visualized with the deep red complexion of a 16-year-old female, whose stance is nude amidst a blazing fire of pristine awareness and most exalted wisdom. Her head is adorned with a crown of five skulls and upon her forehead, the third eye of wisdom is set vertically (represented here by an auspicious jewel). She drapes a necklace of fifty dried human skulls and is depicted with her traditional vajra-handled knife in her right hand; with a blood filled kapala in her left, she drinks with upturned head while looking above, toward the pure realm of Khechara. This seemingly gruesome gesture is actually symbolic of her clear light in great joy, known as “mahasukha” (the great bliss), [6] [7] thus the blood she drinks may be offered to us all as if a fine wine.

    Resting on the left shoulder is a Katvanga staff as she stands tall with her two feet, trampling the bodies of red Kalaratri and black Bhairava (with heads bending backward), representing the embodiment of illusion and ego-awareness. The composition, all of which rests above a sun disc and multicolored lotus pedestal, she is rendered here after a thankga of Naropa Tradition (passed down from a special teaching of the Indian Mahasiddha Naropa). Vajrayoginī herself may be classified as the personification of “Wisdom” or “Mother” and her practice originates with the Chakrasamvara Cycle of Tantras, which is one of the five principal tantric practices of the Sakya School, although found in one form or another, she is included in all schools of Tibetan Buddhism. [8]

    Vajrayoginī also appears in versions from the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, with one popular system having the practitioner visualize themselves as Vajrayoginī, as such, their guru taking the form of Milarepa. [9] Thus depicted above the central deity here we see Milarepa on our right, with his great Guru Marpa left (whose guru was Naropa himself, and other great Indian masters). [10]

    Vajrayoginī is a simplified, single most form of the female Buddha, who is otherwise a collection of alternate forms. From her sādhanās she is visualized in English terms as “Vajra Sow”, “Wrathful Lady”, “Fierce Black One”, and other such similar manifestations of female energy found in numerous iconographic renderings and traditions. Each feature of Vajrayoginī’s visualization conveys important spiritual concept. For example, her three eyes indicate her ability to see all (past, present and future); her red-colored body symbolizes the blazing of her ”inner fire”, and the curved knife she wields, demonstrates the power to sever the delusions and obstacles of her followers and of all living beings. [11]

    —–

    Wordmarque Design and Photography

    —–

    References:

    [1] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996, p.xii.

    [2] “The Berzin Archives.” Bonding Practices for Mother Tantra. Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.berzinarchives.com/…/bonding_prac_mother_tantra_….

    [3] Shaw, Miranda Eberle. Buddhist Goddesses of India. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006, p. 8.

    [4] English, Elizabeth. Vajrayoginī: Her Visualizations, Rituals & Forms: A Study of the Cult of Vajrayoginī in India. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2002.

    [5] “Vajrasattva (Buddhist Deity) – White (with Consort).” Vajrasattva (Buddhist Deity). Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.himalayanart.org/items/77598.

    [6] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996 p. 123-127.

    [7] Glenn H. Mullin

    [8] “Item: Vajrayogini (Buddhist Deity) – (Naropa Tradition).” Vajrayogini (Buddhist Deity). Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.himalayanart.org/items/290.

    [9] English, Elizabeth. Vajrayoginī: Her Visualizations, Rituals & Forms: A Study of the Cult of Vajrayoginī in India. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2002, p. xxiii.

    [10] Drinking the Mountain Stream: Songs of Tibet’s Beloved Saint, Milarepa … by Mi-la-ras-pa, Rinpoche Lama Kunga, Brian Cutillo, p.305.

    [11] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996, p.123-127.

    VY

  12. Beatrix Ooi on Aug 23, 2018 at 11:15 am

    For more free high reolution images of Vajrayogini, visit: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/downloads/buddha-images.html?nggpage=9

    Vajrayogini

    Vajrayogini

    Vajrayogini

  13. Pastor Adeline Woon on Aug 22, 2018 at 11:24 pm

    Medicine Buddha puja encourages healing of all levels – physical, mental and emotional healing for those in need.

    High resolution file of this thangka is available for download for all dharma practitioners around the world and for those who just want sacred images in their environment. Enjoy, be blessed and share this with others.

    Here is the link to free download of this image and many other images: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/downloads/buddha-images.html?nggpage=7

  14. Wai Meng Wan on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:05 am

    This article told me that there are so many types of dakinis out there. I remember that when we attended tsog, we had very quiet in case we disturbed the unenlightened dakinis.

  15. Pastor Adeline on Jul 28, 2018 at 3:01 am

    Nice short video of a new LED signage reminding us of who we can go to for blessings in case of need: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBwrkaKUoH0

  16. Pastor Adeline Woon on Jul 27, 2018 at 6:33 am

    This is my beautiful Bodhgaya Vajra Yogini on my personal altar. May you be blessed by her always. Read about her here https://bit.ly/2AfEK4Q

    Tsem Rinpoche

  17. Joy Kam on Jul 26, 2018 at 2:29 am

    Listening to the chanting of sacred words, melodies, mantras, sutras and prayers has a very powerful healing effect on our outer and inner environments. It clears the chakras, spiritual toxins, the paths where our ‘chi’ travels within our bodies for health as well as for clearing the mind. It is soothing and relaxing but at the same time invigorates us with positive energy. The sacred sounds invite positive beings to inhabit our environment, expels negative beings and brings the sound of growth to the land, animals, water and plants. Sacred chants bless all living beings on our land as well as inanimate objects. Do download and play while in traffic to relax, when you are about to sleep, during meditation, during stress or just anytime. Great to play for animals and children. Share with friends the blessing of a full Dorje Shugden puja performed at Kechara Forest Retreat by our puja department for the benefit of others. Tsem Rinpoche

    Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbzgskLKxT8&t=5821s

  18. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 25, 2018 at 2:46 am

    The current form of Naro Kacho Vajra Yogini appeared to the Indian Mahasiddha Naropa after he meditated intensely on her practice inside a cave. He beheld her glorious form in a vision. This unique form became known as Naropa’s Vajra Yogini or Naro Kacho, as it had never existed before. Later, in Tibet, His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche also had visions of Vajra Yogini. His vision differed slightly from the vision of her that Naropa beheld. In the original Naro Kacho form, Vajra Yogini looks towards her pure land named Kechara. However in Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche’s vision, she looked straight at him, symbolic of the deity empowering him to bestow her practice to many people in order to benefit them. The practice of Vajra Yogini belongs to the Highest Yoga Tantra classification that leads to tremendous inner transformation and can even grant enlightenment within just one lifetime.

    PabongkaRinpocheVY

  19. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 22, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    Video of Tsem Rinpoche’s shrine taken July 16, 2018. Very beautiful, well done and meticulous.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPAfpMoN2bA

  20. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 21, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Video of Tsem Rinpoche’s shrine taken July 16, 2018.
    Very beautiful, well done and meticulous.

    https://video.tsemtulku.com/chat-videos/chat-1531752637.mp4


  21. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 7, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    Vajra Yogini has many different forms and in each of these forms, the positioning of her sacred body, the various implements she holds and the expressions on her face have profound meaning into various aspects of enlightenment. The implements she holds, the expressions on her face, and her body symbolise specific aspects of enlightenment that suit people during a particular time and place according to their karma. So, therefore, Vajra Yogini’s pose, forms and emanations change over time in order to suit different karmically-connected practitioners. It will keep changing because enlightenment is fluid, compassionate and skilful. To gaze upon Vajra Yogini is to look at a complete ‘roadmap’ to enlightenment as every aspect of her body is a manifestation of enlightenment. Therefore to have her form, picture, painting or statue is very blessed. We should make offerings to her daily diligently.

    After the great Mahasiddha Naropa had served his guru the Mahasiddha Tilopa for 12 years, Tilopa conferred the Vajra Varahi (another form of Vajra Yogini) initiation with full instructions unto Naropa. Then, Naropa diligently meditated on Vajra Varahi and had a vision of her, and when she appeared to him directly, she appeared in the form of Vajra Yogini. Normally, when he engaged in the Vajra Yogini (Vajravarahi) practice, she was in the form of facing him directly, holding a skull cup and a curved flaying knife in front of her heart. One leg was up and one leg was down as in a dancing pose. That was the form of Vajra Yogini that he had meditated on to gain the highest attainments.

    After he had meditated on Vajra Varahi and gained visions of her, she appeared to him in a different form, with her face looking up at Kechara Paradise instead of facing him directly. Her left hand holding the skullcup was thrust in the air and her right hand holding the curved flaying knife, also known as a cemetery knife was facing down at sentient beings or samsara to help beings cut their bonds to suffering. Her left leg was bent, and her right extended while standing in a pose of looking towards Kechara Paradise like she is about to take off there. This form signifies she will take you there and out of suffering. That form of Vajra Yogini became special and that was called Naro Kacho or the Vajra Yogini of Naropa. This Naropa’s Vajra Yogini was initiated to the Nepalese Pamtingpa brothers and they meditated diligently and this tradition of Naropa’s Vajra Yogini just became prevalent and took off from there. Naropa started initiating his other disciples as well into this special form of Vajra Yogini and she became known as Naropa’s Vajra Yogini till this day and it is considered a highly blessed lineage. That is the lineage we have now and most prevalent.

    She is looking up because this Naropa’s Vajra Yogini is indicating she will lead her practitioners to her Kechara Paradise within one lifetime if you are diligent in her practice. Realizing enlightenment is harder for people in today’s world and needs more time during Kaliyuga degenerate period, she leads you to her paradise where you can practice undisturbed to Buddha-hood.

    In this brilliant artwork, what you see is the Mahasiddha Naropa having a direct vision of Vajra Yogini. It’s the first time she has appeared to Naropa in this form. This form is associated with Naropa. Prior to Naropa, this form of Vajra Yogini did not exist. She in this vision is initiating him into this form (Naro Kacho) of herself indicating this form will be most efficacious now according to our karmic period. In the background, you will see a cave with a light in it because when Naropa used to meditate in that cave, it is said that from his body would emit a light and people could see it from afar. You can also see animals surrounding Vajra Yogini, they can feel her compassion and her great blessings and they are at peace around her.

    Vajra Yogini brings peace, love, compassion, wisdom and freedom to everyone who practices her incredibly powerful tantra. Therefore, this artwork is a very beautiful representation of the time when Naropa had a vision of Vajra Yogini in this form for the first time and it is now known as Naropa’s Vajra Yogini. This artwork was offered to me as a gift from a very talented artist. I deeply appreciate this piece of visual spirituality very much.

    Tsem Rinpoche

    To download for your shrine, please click here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=62528

  22. Samfoonheei on Jun 29, 2018 at 12:47 pm

    Wow such a beautiful discovery by historian and archaeologist, a mystic site of ancient tantric practices .It seem that these temple were abandoned long ago for mysterious reasons. It were then rediscovered and restored by archaeologists only in the last century. Amazing …. sixty-four yogini temple structure is smallest roofless temples in India, built many centuries AD ago. Some of the beautiful yoginis structures still reminds .The mysteries of dakinis reminds till today as the locals believed these mysterious celestial beings will cause harm if coming across one. The temple of Hirapur is located extremely isolated, is certainly worth a visit. This temple is known for its beauty of its architectural and unique structures.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Davis Lai for this sharing of a better knowledge of the many dakinis.

  23. Jacinta on Jun 29, 2018 at 11:09 am

    Dear Rinpoche and Pastor David Lai,

    I am fascinated with this topic about Dakas-Dakinis and have been thinking about this a lot in these two three days. I’ve finished reading a book that discussed about Guru Padmasambhava and His virtuous activities in Bhutan, about termas, the tertons, the Dharma Protectors and Guardians and the sites. When I read back this post, the last paragraph caught my attention~ that summarises the whole essence of why we need to know this and the importance of this article. I hope I get what Rinpoche wanted us to realise by posting this topic up.

    1. “ Ultimately, it is not a matter of whether the sixty-four yoginis are Buddhist in origin or not, but whether the origin of this form of worship is authentic. In the Buddhist context, tracing any practice to a valid source is of utmost importance in order for the practitioner to possess a sense of confidence in the efficacy of the practice. Needless to say, the sixty-four yoginis must have been the result of a pure vision by an attained meditator-yogi or a great master.”
    —- Rinpoche has stressed on the importance of knowing the lineage and the authenticity of the practices that we are about to engage. It’s so important so that we carry on the pure lineages in order to spread pure and genuine BuddhaDharma to others for as long as we can. We should strive to do this and not simply make up a lineage and passing it on. It will affect many things including the correct way to practice, the accomplishments and the eventually future of the students. We cannot make fun of other people’s enlightenment and hence we sure of this. This is why (with correct motivation) we pray that we will be a lineage holder ourselves by study, contemplation and practice. May we be able to do that. If not us, who else? Even though it sounds silly but however difficult it may seem we should pray for that. Even flowers bloomed from a tiny seed. It’s due to Bodhicitta, that all those lineage masters willingly to commit themselves for many hours of studying, training and reincarnating back again and again to carry on the lineage. Even Gyalchen Shugden reincarnated back into Sakya family. Besides, with patience in particular, genuine Lamas will need to wait wait for the positive karma of the students to open up so that the students can realise and practice Dharma.

    2. “However, the record of this lineage is now lost and all that is left are the ruins of this once mighty and pervasive lineage and practice.”
    —- In order to preserve Dharma, we need lineage holders as discussed above. A lineage will die off when people no longer practices it and the best example to elucidate this is the article itself. It reminds me of the Shangpa Kagyu Lineage where Venerable Kalu Rinpoche single-handedly spreaded the lineage of Shangpa Kagyu. It also reminds me of the lineage of Dorje Shugden where Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche requested His Lama to ask for the DS teachings and rituals as the previous texts was lost. Hence, how precious it is that we should carry on the rituals and the lineage. In one of the paragraphs in DS prayer, it says something like this “ If one performs the fulfilling and restoring ritual delighting Gyalchen’s mind, with substances and requisites of pure Samaya, ….. “
    for me this shows how important it is to uphold the prayer, the rituals, the practices and so on. Also, in particular I remember Rinpoche mentioned in a video about rain dances and why it doesn’t work anymore. Rinpoche touched on the importance of elements (in this case perhaps the Dakas and Dakinis also ), the rituals, purification and etc. Spirituality erodes due to many factors such as when elements are gone, people do not practice the rituals and etc. It’s all interconnected. https://youtu.be/aFhbYU5rxB4

    Many things were in my mind but I would like to pen down some of my thoughts here so that I can come back to read it later. Or perhaps seniors can correct me on this. Thank you for this blog in particular. Because of this, I can learn more and share my thoughts as well. Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor David Lai.

    • Jacinta on Jun 29, 2018 at 11:25 am

      Sorry for the grammar. It was written down in a hush. 🙏

  24. Anne Ong on Jun 28, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    This is really an interesting topic and at first i was pretty confused why some Dakinis have negative reaction towards people until Rinpoche explained to us on facebook this morning. Really love this mysterious and yet beautiful, sacred and holy place. Thank you very much Rinpoche and Pastor David for this great write up! Hope for more of these to come!👍👏🙏😘

  25. Datuk May on Jun 28, 2018 at 7:28 pm

    Tantric practice in Vajrayana doctrine of Buddhism had always intrigued me. However I was given the point of view that unless one is a very dedicated practitioner who hold her/his vows strictly, tantric practice would not be initiated by a responsible teacher. The reason being that there can be repercussions which may be severe.

    This article is such an empowering piece of learning on the mysteries of dakinis and how we should have their existence in mind and be mindful of being respectful to them.

    I have read of dakinis helping with practitioners on the tantric path and learning more about dakinis/yoginis make me realise like most things life there are different categories of these special beings.

    It is not possible for me to think that yoginis do not exist as temples like the 64 Yogini Temple of Hirapur, India is definitely testament to their existence and practice and the higher learning of Buddhism.

    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor David for this enlightening article.

  26. Meghna on Jun 28, 2018 at 2:10 pm

    This was a powerhouse of information! When you know more information, even a little bit – about the intricacies it does make a huge difference. There are many sites like this which are known all over India, however all the shrouded in mystery, superstition and a feel of danger due to the lack of knowledge.

    The correlations between the Hindu and Buddhist pantheons is very interesting. The Buddhist concept of yidam and higher practices are also somewhat similar to the Hindu practices of the isht -devta; which according to vedic astrology is the being which guides to liberation. The take on the origins was intriguing – pure lineages which were lost?

    (Also deities like chinnamasta, Maha kali, Hayagriva and mahakala which appear, albeit differently.)
    The information of the 64 Dakinis and their details was highly enlightening as out of them mostly nine or the ten are widely known to the masses.

    Thank you for explaining the details. As mentioned, the slightest amount of knowledge can make one see the imagery and help understand and perceive the importance.

    Also the books WOW!

  27. Tsem Rinpoche on Jun 28, 2018 at 10:03 am

    Pictures attached: Dog headed dakini and owl headed dakini

    ugdongma_full_508_792

    Dog headed Dakini-edited-2 jpg

  28. yin ping on Jun 27, 2018 at 10:54 pm

    The Hirapur temple is the smallest and oldest yogini temple. The architecture of this temple is unique compare to typical Hindu temple which is square with linear orientation. This yogini temple is open to the sky in circular shape.

    The craftsmanship of the sculptures is amazing. Each sculpture is distinctive from one with another in different pose and ornaments adorned. Although prayers are carry on daily by care taker, the original record of this lineage is lost. Perhaps this practice is not meant to be found anymore.

    If I have a chance to visit this temple, it would be one of a kind experience to be surrounded by small Yoginis statues made of black Chlorite on all side.

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  • Yee Yin
    Thursday, Aug 22. 2019 06:30 PM
    This is such a beautiful story. When Joao found Jinjing the penguin, out of compassion, he rescued Jinjing. He made sure Jinjing has recuperated before releasing Jinjing back to where it came from. Joao didn’t expect anything from Jinjing.

    However, Jinjing remembers the kindness of Joao and comes back to visit Joao every year. Animals may not be able to talk but they can feel the sincerity of human beings. Jinjing knows that Joao is very kind and will never hurt it.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/jinjing-the-penguin-swims-5000-miles-every-year-to-visit-the-man-who-saved-him
  • S.Prathap
    Thursday, Aug 22. 2019 02:52 PM
    Thank you very much for beautiful and good article about pilgrimage to Bodhgaya.Buddhist around the world is encourage to make a trip to Bodhgaya.Just Bodhgaya itself there is so many beautiful places to visit.

    The Bodhi tree where Buddha Shakyamuni attain enlightenment is consider the most significant of the 7 sacred sites in Bodhgaya.Here the details enough for us to plan a trip to Bodhgaya.

    Read more : https://bit.ly/2TPVu8I
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Aug 22. 2019 02:11 PM
    It’s a great experience where a small group of Kechatians of a live time going on a meritorious journey to Shar Gaden Monastery in Mundgod, South India . On behalf of His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche and Kechara in making an offerings to all 650 monks of the monastery. Wow…..that’s really wonderful , looking through at those beautiful pictures tell us a thousands words.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/journey-to-shar-gaden-monastery-2019-making-offerings-to-the-sangha.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Aug 22. 2019 02:10 PM
    Wow beautiful photos of Buddhas and Great Lamas paints a thousands words. Found this old post which is amazing with many old photos. ….a safe keeping of Rinpoche collected over the years. Some of those photos where rare such as the one of HH Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang and the Kuan Yin statue kept in Rinpoche’s audience room in Kechara. Well maintained even it’s a decade ago. We are also fortunate to see the sacred altar of Pelden Hlamo in Rashi Gempil Ling Temple in Howell, New Jersey.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing of those old photos in Rinpoche’s photo album.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/gallery/photo-album-buddhas-and-great-lamas.html
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 10:16 PM
    If you can’t bear the pain of watching these videos, why do you bring them pain? | 若你不忍心看这些视频,那为何却忍心伤害它们?

    Eating meat causes killings which is a choice you make at every meal. Make the conscious choice of kindness. Don’t eat meat and their wishes to be alive are yours to fulfill.

    http://bit.ly/2YapO3B
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 10:08 PM
    The Importance of Tibet Befriending China

    After 60 years of strife, is it time to mend the fences for mutual benefits and harmony? Read more here and decide for yourself: http://bit.ly/2ZegOXs
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 10:00 PM
    Racism Against Tibetans in America

    When I was sent the article below today by one of my friends, I was not surprised because from my experience growing up in America, I know many people have experienced and continue to experience racism just because of something they cannot change which is their ethnicity and skin colour. So while I was not happy to read what Tenzin has experienced, sad to say but now he knows what it feels like as a Tibetan to be called something derogatory because of who you are.

    Read more here how where there is discrimination, there is suffering: http://bit.ly/2YxFY2k
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:55 PM
    Mokele-Mbembe: The Last Living Dinosaur | 摩克拉姆贝贝: 地球上仅存的恐龙

    Do dinosaur still exists? Find out more of this creature whom the natives know as Mokele-Mbembe and all the close-encounters that most often will end in disasters.

    http://bit.ly/2SNKCrv
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:50 PM
    What is andagu?

    Today, Pagan is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site because over 2,200 of these ancient temples and pagodas still survive. The Pagan plains, by the way, are only 104 square kilometres so you can imagine how the landscape must have looked with so many monasteries, temples and stupas. The city itself must have been teeming with artisans, carvers, painters and sculptors all working on these holy sites. After all, if people were building the temples and monasteries, there had to be other people creating the Buddha images to be enshrined within.

    Find out more here: http://bit.ly/2Ygq29q
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:39 PM
    Puja to Guru Chakrasamvara

    According to the Heruka Tantras, Buddha Shakyamuni himself laid down the practices they contain. To do this, the Buddha manifested on Mount Kailash as Buddha Heruka Chakrasamvara in sacred union with Vajra Yogini and the 62 deities in his entourage.

    Read more of this authentic practice by Buddha himself: http://bit.ly/2K4n91a
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:13 PM
    What Lama Zopa Teaches About the Dorje Shugden Ban

    FPMT centres today however, no longer rely on Dorje Shugden, on the advice of their current spiritual advisor and spiritual heir of Lama Yeshe, Venerable Lama Zopa. The new FPMT policy to no longer follow the practice of Dorje Shugden is in contrast with Lama Yeshe who was extremely devoted to Dorje Shugden and relied on him until the day he passed. This is something that Lama Zopa himself has previously acknowledged; despite halting the practice at FPMT centres, Lama Zopa said in the past that:

    Kopan Monastery had been performing the Dorje Shugden practice from the beginning, as this was Lama Yeshe’s main protector, on whom he relied whenever he needed help for anything.~Lama Zopa

    Find out what is going on here: http://bit.ly/2SR24eW
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:08 PM
    Translator Ven. Helmut Gassner on Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden

    As if by some divine plan, Helmut Gassner’s role as the Dalai Lama’s interpreter ended just a year before the Dalai Lama’s ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden in 1996. After having interpreted for the Dalai Lama during a series of events organised by the University for Peace in Berlin, they said goodbye to each other at the airport, where the Dalai Lama told him, “I never worry when you are there as my interpreter.” That was the last time Helmut Gassner interpreted for the Dalai Lama.

    For interesting read, visit here: http://bit.ly/32XzFZd
  • Sofi
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 09:02 PM
    Enlightened childhood paintings by Tsem Rinpoche

    Some of the artwork, which took hours to create, even won Rinpoche prizes at school. For his artwork, Rinpoche used a variety of mediums; some of the Buddha images would be painted and others would be coloured with crayons or magic markers. Once finished, Rinpoche would also wrap some of the drawings with Saran Wrap (cling wrap) plastic and attach a string to them, before passing the images out to friends and relatives to wear for blessings and protection.

    Read more here: http://bit.ly/32Y12T2
  • Yee Yin
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 08:11 PM
    It is great that Kechara Puja House is offering pet funeral service. This will give comfort to the pet owners as they can do something beneficial for their pets. After the funeral rite is performed, the owner can continue to help the pets to accumulate merits by making offerings to the 3 Jewels and dedicate the merits to them.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/kechara-13-depts/dog-funerals-held-by-kechara.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Aug 21. 2019 04:05 PM
    Stephon Marbury is an American former basketball player who played for NBA All Star in 2001 and 2003. The Two-time NBA All-Star embraced China after accepting China offer and turned his career and life around. Even though thousands of miles away from his former life in America , leaving everything behind. Through a series of remarkable games and scripted events he became one of the most beloved people in China. Stephon Marbury went from NBA outcast to Chinese legend and left behind a complicated legacy in the NBA. He is the first foreign celebrity to receive permanent residency in China.
    He never give up even though he did failed in his career with NBA and embracing China was the right choice.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing.
    Positivity, confidence, and persistence are key in our life, so never give up in whatever we do…..

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/stephon-marbury-embraces-china.html

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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Technical: Lew Kwan Leng, Justin Ripley, Yong Swee Keong
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I must thank my dharma blog team who are great assets to me, Kechara and growth of dharma in this wonderful region. I am honoured and thrilled to work with them. I really am. Maybe I don't say it enough to them, but I am saying it now. I APPRECIATE THESE GUYS VERY MUCH!

Tsem Rinpoche

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  Bigfoot, Yeti, Sasquatch

The Unknown

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

Photos On The Go

Click on the images to view the bigger version. And scroll down and click on "View All Photos" to view more images.
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
4 weeks 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)
4 weeks 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)
4 weeks 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
1 month 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
1 month 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 months 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 months 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 months 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
3 months 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
3 months 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
3 months 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
3 months 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
3 months 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
3 months ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
3 months ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
3 months 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.
3 months 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.
3 months ago
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha's. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
3 months ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
3 months ago
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
This is pretty amazing!

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

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
3 months ago
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can\'t stop thinking of you and I can\'t forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can't stop thinking of you and I can't forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
3 months ago
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
3 months ago
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
3 months ago
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
3 months ago
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
3 months ago
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
3 months ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
3 months ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
4 months ago
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
DON\'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
4 months ago
DON'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
4 months ago
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
4 months ago
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
4 months ago
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
4 months ago
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
4 months ago
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
4 months ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
4 months ago
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
4 months ago
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
4 months ago
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
4 months ago
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
4 months ago
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden\'s grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
4 months ago
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden's grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
4 months ago
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
4 months ago
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche 

www.tsemrinpoche.com
4 months ago
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

Videos On The Go

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

ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

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

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

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

View All Questions

CHAT PICTURES

Teacher Jayce explained the good value from Rinpoche’s teachings. Alice, KSDS
3 days ago
Teacher Jayce explained the good value from Rinpoche’s teachings. Alice, KSDS
“Be kind to animals.” Let your kids join the monthly Animal Liberation at Kechara House, Sunwaymas.
3 days ago
“Be kind to animals.” Let your kids join the monthly Animal Liberation at Kechara House, Sunwaymas.
Chern Chern learnt dharma and show the good attitudes to others. Alice, KSDS
3 days ago
Chern Chern learnt dharma and show the good attitudes to others. Alice, KSDS
Encourage the kids to express their feelings and at the same instill the dharma to them. Alice, KSDS
3 days ago
Encourage the kids to express their feelings and at the same instill the dharma to them. Alice, KSDS
Teacher Grace taught the participants for the DIY candles. Alice , KSDS
3 days ago
Teacher Grace taught the participants for the DIY candles. Alice , KSDS
Children recite Migtsema and Manjushri mantra before the start of dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Children recite Migtsema and Manjushri mantra before the start of dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Student do full prostration before the start of dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Student do full prostration before the start of dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wen Yue led students to do key chain as part of art and craft activity. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Wen Yue led students to do key chain as part of art and craft activity. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Kien shared some photos of sangha members. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Teacher Kien shared some photos of sangha members. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- close bonding during WOAH camp. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Throwback- close bonding during WOAH camp. Lin Mun KSDS
Teenage dharma class in Kechara House . Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Teenage dharma class in Kechara House . Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- Chinese New Year activity, calligraphy with best wishes words. Lin Mun KSDS
6 days ago
Throwback- Chinese New Year activity, calligraphy with best wishes words. Lin Mun KSDS
KISG has been performing White Tara and Dorje Shugden puja for 4 consecutive nights. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
7 days ago
KISG has been performing White Tara and Dorje Shugden puja for 4 consecutive nights. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
KISG members travelled to KFR for Ullambana today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
2 weeks ago
KISG members travelled to KFR for Ullambana today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
After the Bird Liberation, we proceeded with Dorje Shugden puja. Just before we started our puja, Pastor Patsy gave us a short Dharma Sharing. Pastor spoke about Dharma practice in these days and reminded us to always keep our samaya with Guru intact. To honour our promises, reduce our worldly activities and practice Dharma strongly. Thank you Pastor for the valuable advice~Jacinta, KPSG
2 weeks ago
After the Bird Liberation, we proceeded with Dorje Shugden puja. Just before we started our puja, Pastor Patsy gave us a short Dharma Sharing. Pastor spoke about Dharma practice in these days and reminded us to always keep our samaya with Guru intact. To honour our promises, reduce our worldly activities and practice Dharma strongly. Thank you Pastor for the valuable advice~Jacinta, KPSG
We chanted Medicine Buddha's mantra before we blessed them. May they be connected with Buddha always. ~Jacinta , monthly Bird Liberation Kechara Penang Study Group
2 weeks ago
We chanted Medicine Buddha's mantra before we blessed them. May they be connected with Buddha always. ~Jacinta , monthly Bird Liberation Kechara Penang Study Group
Special thanks to Linny Neoh and her friend for joining our Kechara Penang Study Group Bird Liberation. ~Jacinta, KPSG
2 weeks ago
Special thanks to Linny Neoh and her friend for joining our Kechara Penang Study Group Bird Liberation. ~Jacinta, KPSG
Birds were blessed before their departure to freedom. They deserved love & freedom too ~Jacinta,KPSG
2 weeks ago
Birds were blessed before their departure to freedom. They deserved love & freedom too ~Jacinta,KPSG
Pastor Patsy giving explanation during Bird Liberation event. Kechara Penang Study Group's monthly bird liberation - Jacinta
2 weeks ago
Pastor Patsy giving explanation during Bird Liberation event. Kechara Penang Study Group's monthly bird liberation - Jacinta
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma Class every Sunday morning, Teachers and students start dharma learning at this blissful morning ~By KSDS Jayce Goh
3 weeks ago
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma Class every Sunday morning, Teachers and students start dharma learning at this blissful morning ~By KSDS Jayce Goh
Kechara Sunday Dharma Class every Sunday morning, Teacher Lin Mun start class with Manjusri prayers after prostration ~By KSDS Jayce Goh
3 weeks ago
Kechara Sunday Dharma Class every Sunday morning, Teacher Lin Mun start class with Manjusri prayers after prostration ~By KSDS Jayce Goh
Mdm Glian Sim offered Serkym on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
3 weeks ago
Mdm Glian Sim offered Serkym on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Janice So offered water to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara, Dorje Shugden and all Buddhas. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
3 weeks ago
Janice So offered water to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara, Dorje Shugden and all Buddhas. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Ms. Leow offered lights and incense prior to the prayer session in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
3 weeks ago
Ms. Leow offered lights and incense prior to the prayer session in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
KISG has carried out a session of 21 Praises to Taras prayer recitations today in Ipoh. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
3 weeks ago
KISG has carried out a session of 21 Praises to Taras prayer recitations today in Ipoh. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
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Dorje Shugden
Click to watch my talk about Dorje Shugden....