The Buddha didn’t just believe in rebirth, he argued for it

Oct 6, 2011 | Views: 1,693

(By Tsem Rinpoche)

Thai forest monk Thanissaro Bhikkhu, a frequent contributor to Tricycle, sends the following:

It never ceases to amaze me that scholars—who should know better—keep repeating the idea that the Buddha lived in a time when everyone took for granted two principles: (1) that rebirth happened, and (2) that karma had an effect on how rebirth happened.

You wonder why this idea gets repeated so often, because the Pali Canon provides clear evidence to the contrary, evidence that has been available in Western languages for more than a century.

The Buddha frequently referred to two extremes of wrong view that blocked progress on the path: eternalism and annihilationism. “Annihilationism” is the term he used to describe those who denied rebirth. Apparently he didn’t invent the term himself, as Majjhima Nikaya sutra 22 reports that other teachers sometimes accused him of being an annihilationist as well.

The Canon mentions two people who, in the Buddha’s times, were famous for their annihilationist views. One was Ajita Kesakambalin, the leader of a materialist sect. Digha Nikaya sutra 2 reports his views as follows:

“‘There is nothing given, nothing offered, nothing sacrificed. There is no fruit or result of good or bad actions. There is no this world, no next world, no mother, no father, no spontaneously reborn beings; no contemplatives or brahmans who, faring rightly and practicing rightly, proclaim this world and the next after having directly known and realized it for themselves. A person is a composite of four primary elements. At death, the earth (in the body) returns to and merges with the (external) earth-substance. The fire returns to and merges with the external fire-substance. The liquid returns to and merges with the external liquid-substance. The wind returns to and merges with the external wind-substance. The sense-faculties scatter into space. Four men, with the bier as the fifth, carry the corpse. Its eulogies are sounded only as far as the charnel ground. The bones turn pigeon-colored. The offerings end in ashes. Generosity is taught by idiots. The words of those who speak of existence after death are false, empty chatter. With the break-up of the body, the wise and the foolish alike are annihilated, destroyed. They do not exist after death.’” — Digha Nikaya sutra 2

Digha Nikaya sutra 23 tells of a Prince Payasi who held a similar materialist view and who had used his power to execute criminals as an opportunity to conduct gruesome, quasi-scientific experiments to test whether any part of a human being survived death. Two of the experiments were these:

“There is the case, Master Kassapa, where my men—having caught a thief, a wrong-doer—present him to me, (saying,) ‘Here is a thief, a wrong-doer for you, lord. Decree for him whatever punishment you want.’ And I say, ‘Very well, then, masters, having placed this man while still alive in a clay jar, having sealed the mouth, having covered it with a damp skin, having plastered it with a thick layer of damp clay, having set it in a furnace, light the fire.’

“They—responding, ‘Very well,’ to me—having placed the man while still alive in a clay jar, having sealed the mouth, having covered it with a damp skin, having plastered it with a thick layer of damp clay, having set it in a furnace, light the fire. When we know, ‘The man has died,’ then—removing the jar, breaking through the seal, opening the mouth—we look carefully, (thinking,) ‘Maybe we’ll see his soul escaping.’ But we don’t see his soul escaping….’

“There is the case, Master Kassapa, where my men—having caught a thief, a wrong-doer—present him to me, (saying,) ‘Here is a thief, a wrong-doer for you, lord. Decree for him whatever punishment you want.’ And I say, ‘Very well, then, masters, having weighed this man with a scale while still alive, having strangled him to death with a bowstring, weigh him with the scale again.’

“They—responding, ‘Very well,’ to me—having weighed the man with a scale while still alive, having strangled him to death with a bowstring, weigh him with the scale again. When he is alive, he is lighter, more flexible, and more malleable. But when he has died, he is heavier, stiffer, and less malleable.

“This is the reason, Master Kassapa, for which I believe, ‘There is no other world, there are no spontaneously reborn beings, there is no fruit or result of good or bad actions.’” — Digha Nikaya sutra 23

Digha Nikaya sutra 1 gives a more comprehensive picture of annihilationist views current at the time, classifying them by how they define the self annihilated at death. There were seven types in all. Three of them defined the self in terms of a body: either as a physical body composed of the four material elements, as a divine physical body, or as an astral body. The view espoused by Ajita Kesakambalin and Prince Payasi would fall under the first of the three. Four other annihilationist views, however, defined the self as formless: experiencing the dimension of infinite space, of infinite consciousness, of nothingness, or of neither perception nor non-perception. In each of the seven cases, these doctrines state that the self, however defined, perishes and is annihilated at death.

As for the non-Buddhist schools that affirmed the idea of rebirth, the Pali Canon explicitly names at least four: Brahmans (Samyutta Nikaya 42:6; Anguttara Nikaya sutra 10:177), Jains (Majjhima Nikaya sutra 101), and two contemplative (samana) schools: one led by Makkhali Gosala, and the other by Pakudha Kaccayana. We know from other sources that the Jains and some Brahmans affirmed that action played a role in shaping rebirth; the Canon shows, however, that the other two teachers denied that action played any role in rebirth at all.

“[Makkhali Gosala:] ‘Though one might think, “Through this morality, this practice, this austerity, or this holy life I will ripen unripened kamma and eliminate ripened kamma whenever touched by it”—that is impossible. Pleasure and pain are measured out, the wandering-on is fixed in its limits. There is no shortening or lengthening, no accelerating or decelerating. Just as a ball of string, when thrown, comes to its end simply by unwinding, in the same way, having transmigrated and wandered on, the wise and the foolish alike will put an end to pain.’” — Digha Nikaya sutra 2

“[Pakudha Kaccayana:] ‘There are these seven substances—unmade, irreducible, uncreated, without a creator, barren, stable as a mountain-peak, standing firm like a pillar—that do not alter, do not change, do not interfere with one another, are incapable of causing one another pleasure, pain, or both pleasure and pain. Which seven? The earth-substance, the liquid-substance, the fire-substance, the wind-substance, pleasure, pain, and the soul as the seventh. These are the seven substances—unmade, irreducible, uncreated, without a creator, barren, stable as a mountain-peak, standing firm like a pillar—that do not alter, do not change, do not interfere with one another, and are incapable of causing one another pleasure, pain, or both pleasure and pain.’” — Digha Nikaya sutra 2

So the issues of whether there is rebirth and—if there is—whether karma has an effect on rebirth were hotly debated in the Buddha’s time. And the debate didn’t extend just to philosophers. Ordinary people were also affected by the debate, as is clear in the Buddha’s instructions to the Kalamas, a group of skeptical householders. Knowing that he can’t prove the principle of karmic results to them—proof of that comes only with the first stage of awakening—he says that if you assume that karma has results, you will act skillfully. And when you act skillfully, you gain four assurances in the here and now.

“‘If there is a world after death, if there is the fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then this is the basis by which, with the break-up of the body, after death, I will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world.’ This is the first assurance one acquires.

“‘But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease—free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.’ This is the second assurance one acquires.

“‘If evil is done through acting, still I have willed no evil for anyone. Having done no evil action, from where will suffering touch me?’ This is the third assurance one acquires.

“‘But if no evil is done through acting, then I can assume myself pure in both respects.’ This is the fourth assurance one acquires.” — (Anguttara Nikaya sutra 3:65)

If everyone in his time believed in karma and rebirth, the Buddha wouldn’t have had to state these assurances.

So it’s obvious that that the idea of rebirth and its connection with karma was not an unexamined assumption in Indian culture. It was one of the most controversial issues of the Buddha’s time—which means that we can’t write off his teachings on karma and rebirth simply as an undigested relic from his culture. In teaching these principles, he was consciously taking a stand on an issue that was hotly debated, in a culture that expected him to articulate clearly his explanation for how and why rebirth did or didn’t happen. We know that he didn’t take on all the hot issues of his day—remember the story of the man shot by the arrow (Majjhima Nikaya sutra 63)—so the Buddha must have had his reasons for taking this issue on.

Source: http://www.tricycle.com/blog/guest-post-buddha-believed-rebirth

 


 

Thanissaro Bhikkhu (Geoffrey DeGraff) (1949 – ) is an American Buddhist monk of the Thai forest kammatthana tradition. After graduating from Oberlin College in 1971 with a degree in European Intellectual History, he traveled to Thailand, where he studied meditation under Ajahn Fuang Jotiko, himself a student of the late Ajahn Lee.

He was ordained in 1976 and lived at Wat Dhammasathit, where he remained following his teacher’s death in 1986. In 1991 he traveled to the hills of San Diego County, U.S., where he helped Ajaan Suwat Suwaco establish Wat Mettavanaram (Metta Forest Monastery). He was made abbot of the monastery in 1993. His long list of publications includes translations from the Thai, Ajaan Lee’s meditation manuals; Handful of Leaves, a four-volume anthology of sutta translations; The Buddhist Monastic Code, a two-volume reference handbook for monks; Wings to Awakening; and (as co-author) the college-level textbook, Buddhist Religions: A Historical Introduction.
 

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19 Responses to The Buddha didn’t just believe in rebirth, he argued for it

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  1. Samfoonheei on Apr 17, 2022 at 4:08 pm

    In the teaching of the Buddha, we will pass away eventually in the natural process of birth, old-age and death. We have to cherish what we have in this life and should keep in mind the impermanence of life. Death is not the end of life, where we will be born is a result of the past and the accumulation of positive and negative action. In this life our karmic actions doing good to benefit others and not harming others will benefit us in future lives. Fear not death as it will lead to rebirth as long as we practice spiritually. Interesting read. I do believe in rebirth, our spirit will still remain and seek out through the need of attachment, attachment to a new body and new life. We are fortunate to learn, practice Buddhism and put in good action ,preparing ourselves when the moment of death arrives.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

  2. Alfonso Malagón on Apr 6, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    I think the reason why it’s very much debated is because it’s not something you can see for yourself. It’s primarily based on faith… or unless you have the meditative techniques to see your past lives. I do believe in Rebirth, but I don’t really “know.”

    A monk asks Bodhidharma (founder of Chan/Zen tradition): “Master, where will you go after death?” Bodhidharma responds, “I don’t know.” The monk remarks, “So there is something you don’t know!” Bodhidharma finally ends the discussion, “I haven’t died yet.”

    If we were to try to see everything for ourselves however, it would take much a longer time and could lead us to madness instead (death by a poisonous arrow). Referencing to Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s last note, “The story about the man shot by the arrow.”

    I think it’s also good to ask ourselves this question: If rebirth and karma weren’t true, would we stop practicing Buddhism?
    Someone once debated that the entire basis of Tibetan Buddhism is on Rebirth and Karma. So, okay, all that wisdom and compassion means nothing right? Of course not! The point is that we don’t practice based on metaphysical qualities, but we practice because of our suffering and for the compassion of all sentient beings. Adding the truth of Rebirth and Karma only strengthens are practice even more.

  3. Lim Han Nee on Oct 15, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche. I like this profound post which necessitates deep reflection on every aspect of it.

    Thai forest monk Thanissan Bhikku has very systematically and succinctly shown to us here that Lord Buddha did not just teach and present to his disciples the two principles of Rebirth and Karma by merely building on a prevailing belief of that time. Instead he shows us here that these two profound truths from Lord Buddha were the result/fruit of his own awakening. Lord Buddha had presented these two principles to his disciples in a clear and irrefutable way through logic and logical inferences, and also by showing the irrationality and lack of logic and basis of the two other/alternative views of Nihilism and Eternalism that were also prevalent in his time in India.

    Skillful and compassionate as Lord Buddha was, he even taught skeptical householders, who would not understand these two principles, how one should reap the benefit of conducting one’s life in accord with these two principles of Rebirth and Karma.

    My own intense thoughts and contemplation on karma and rebirth have been triggered by two recent experiences involving two friends.

    Case 1 is that of a close friend’s beloved sister who discovered she had fourth stage cancer. My close friend is a doctor. Yet, the moment she received the news of this ,she turned to me.She told me that her sister was such a sweet and gentle person whom life had treated most unfairly. Having cancer was yet another of the many bitter and painful experiences she had had to face. In opening up to my friend and her sister and gently guiding her and her sister to understand the working of Karma,and also (going forward) in urging her sister to stay open and compassionate towards her ailment and work towards inner healing as well as outer healing(to prepare for a possibility that her cancer would end in death), I came to have a firmer grasp of how important it is that one’s mind be filled with faith and belief in karma and rebirth.This is especially so when disease sets in and death threatens.

    Case 2 is the experience of being called to the bedside of a 61 year old former student of mine. The fact that it was already too late to help her still pains me immeasurably. I was told that, for two full days before she died, her eyes were wide open. She resisted death all the way, most likely thinking that she did not deserve to be stricken with cancer of the most painful kind and to have discovered it too late to seek a cure for it. Her total ignorance of Dharma, of karma and rebirth, still weighs heavily on my mind.

  4. Thierry Janssens on Oct 11, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    Thank you for this post Rinpoche,

    I never thought really that there was wide acceptance of karma and rebirth in the time of Sakyamuni Buddha. For if there was, the buddhist movement would have been even much larger then.

    Though it is clear that there were many beings that had the fortune of understanding easily and applying easily the teachings of the Buddha then.

    When it comes to a debate about how to realise karma and rebirth, I think of it like this:

    1)If one has a REALISATION of karma and rebirth, then one has an easier path, a faster path too. But that is not enough, for to be able to move further in the buddhist path, one must develop faith in the 3rd Nobel truth, or else buddhahood can hardly be achieved, and one remains a practitioner of the so-called “beginner’s scope”.

    2) If one has doubts about karma and rebirth, then one can go through the following steps:
    a. logic and study,
    b. serious contemplation of what is learned through logic and study,
    c. experimentation (with the above a. and b. fully activated),
    d. faith (as the antidote to doubts), in order:
    first: faith in karma and rebirth,
    second: faith in the Buddhist teachings (taking refuge).

    3) to further develop the faith in karma and rebirth into a faith in the Teacher, the sequence should be like this:
    a. reliance on a trusted teacher,
    b. logic and study,
    c. serious contemplation of what is learned from the teacher and through logic and study,
    d. experimentation (with the above a. b. and c. fully activated),
    e. faith (as the antidote to doubts), in order:
    first: faith in karma and rebirth,
    second: faith in the Buddhist teachings (taking refuge),
    third: faith in the 3rd Noble truth,
    fourth: faith in the Teacher (as a being having achieved buddhahood)-the short cut here is to have faith in the teacher.

    3) thus this is the swift path (following the logic of point 3 above): faith in the Teacher (Guru). Faith in the Teacher is like an “all-inclusive” spiritual package.

    Obstacles to the realization of karma and rebirth are our attachments and delusions.
    For as much as karma and rebirth may be difficult to prove to a mind clouded by attachment and delusion, the opposite of karma and rebirth, Annihilationism, finds little friends in our doubts, attachments and delusions to PROVE Annihilationism.
    Then we should be very careful, just as if we were a jury with the power to condemn somebody (in the case: us), and we analyse the “proofs”, are the proofs reliable? In other words, are our attachments and delusions reliable? Stronger than this: ARE DOUBTS RELIABLE? No, doubts are doubts, they are not foundations for anything to be proven, they are questions to be answered that’s all.

    Teaching karma and rebirth, is teaching a controversy, it is a rebellious teaching. Rebellious to our attachments, to our delusions, to our ego!

    Eventually, if one REALLY has full understanding and faith in karma and rebirth, I would assume that being is enlightened or pretty close to it.

  5. Jean Ai on Oct 11, 2011 at 12:24 am

    What I find interesting is that the annihilationism view still exists today, which means that we should not stop the argument for reincarnation and rebirth. Annihilationism helps me to understand hedonism (the view that pleasure is the only intrinsic good). On the one hand, if nothing exists and there is no life after death, then you can be fearless in the pursuit of anything – since nothing really exists, you cannot be hurt because there is nothing to be hurt. But annhilationism also promotes irresponsibility because if there’s no ‘me’, and there’s no ‘you’ then I can do anything to another being and it would not matter.

    I much prefer the view of karma and reincarnation that Buddha argues for because I think it also promotes fearlessness AND responsibility since it recognises the concept of ‘consequence’. The argument of rebirth takes the position that I am responsible for my own actions and its consequences – since I am responsible for my own actions, what is there to stop me except for myself? Therefore I OUGHT to be fearless in the pursuit of virtue because virtuous acts lead to virtuous results and, at the very smallest scope of motivation, I AM selfish and therefore I want a better life and rebirth for myself. More than that, because my actions can only be considered beneficial/virtuous when there is a recipient of my actions, I need other people. Therefore according to the view of rebirth, I want other people to be happy too.

    I also like that the view Buddha promoted made allowances for minds that are still selfish: “But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease—free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.” It’s a good motivator to think that being virtuous is always within our reach, and can happen regardless of our religious beliefs.

    Thank you Rinpoche for posting this!

  6. susan on Oct 10, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Does it mean the light is not on just because it’s inside a closed door room and you can’t see it? We sure are dependent on and conduct our lives and believes around what we can see or not see. What if the majority of people are born blind, or deaf? And a handful of people can see and can hear. Will the majority of the blind and deaf believe what the minority can see and hear?

    Since Buddha’s time till now, majority of the people are still spiritually blinded thus, the ongoing, heated debates surrounding our next lives (if there are any) continues.

    What struck me was that the Prince Payasi, who held the materialist view did his “experiment” to proof/disprove the existence of the soul by using OTHER people as his guinea pigs! And on top of that, his only instrument of observation was his naked eyes. How about people who holds this view be bold enough to conduct the experiment on THEMSELVES, if understanding existence of next rebirths is merely to observe where the soul go if there is such a thing as a soul. It is an insane and totally illogical method to proof or disproof reincarnation.

    Regarding the annihilationist, which holds the view that self is annihilated at death and that’s’ it… well, I’d be very afraid to live in a society with this as the predominant view. If we can’t even bare office politics and the unbiasedness we experiences on a daily basis, can you imagine with this view, what would people be up to for self gratifications?
    Would it then be a world literally, for the survival of the fittest. I can see people with position of power would see how life and death is after all, they are in position to put an end to the anything and anyone and there will be no repercussions of sort. What if you are not in a position of power, would you subject your experience of life on a daily basis to a society which hold such a view?

    What is strikingly different about Buddha’s teachings is that, he did not “use” others as guinea pigs for his experiments. He subjected himself through the process of discovery. What he discovered about reincarnation and the causes, though cannot immediately be proven to us through our senses, yet we ALL can derive benefits from it immediately irregardless of who we are.

    Majority may not accept reincarnation and karma as universal truth, but who can deny that it will bring about universal benefits with this type of view. I am glad that we do not live in a society predominately with Materialist view nor annihilationist view. Aren’t you?

  7. ngeowchin on Oct 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    One of the most beneficial statement here is that we can still receive protection or benefits by living our life based on the assumption there is life after death. Most of us never conduct any proof on the existence of gravity but we don’t jump from a high building.
    The examples of validating a phenomenon mentioned in the article is based on empirical physical measurements. They are useful for establishing gross physical objects. However there are many objects that have subtle forms and formless (like mind )that are beyond the capacities of those instruments based on current technology.
    Until science catches up, we can establish the existence of subtle objects via observation, inferential logic and one’s experiences. I remembered Rinpoche saying that a truth does not depend on us to believe in it for it to function. If we conduct ourselves in accord with it , we will benefit from it. Many don’t know what is karma, but the benefits of doing good can be experienced by all which is what matters ultimately.

  8. Julia Tan on Oct 10, 2011 at 8:43 am

    I read the article a few times, It’s hard for my level of mind to understand. I felt disgusting knowing that this Prince Payasi who held a materialist view had used his power to execute criminals as an opportunity to proved what he believed. 

    There are many things we choose to believe or not to be believe, do to or to do everyday, but how many of them we actually checked whether they are true, exist or even good for us. I think our faith  towards the object play the biggest role in our mind. If everything has an answer then this is not samsara anymore. 

    I believe in reincarnation as this was what my guru taught me as it made sense and very logic to me. By looking it at the most simple level, I can relate and put His teaching into my daily life to practice to be a happier and kinder person day by day which made me looking forward to the next day to come, by simply believing the exist of reincarnation. 

  9. Yoke Fui on Oct 9, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    To me personally,Buddhism makes perfect logical sense – past ,future lives and karma. The dynamic aspect of these teachings give hope to its followers (as compared to the caste system under Hinduism) and sound basis for the need to practice morality.

    One-creator religions cannot provide satisfactory answers to a lot of questions and many Western scientists born of the Christian faith actually relate better to Buddhist teachings & philosophy.

    On the other spectrum, the annihilistic view will make the world a very dangerous place to live because as long as one can think of a way to commit the perfect crime ,there is no moral code of conduct to follow and human beings will behave like animals as they would not be answerable to the conscience that is unique to homo sapiens.

  10. David Lai on Oct 8, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,
    This is a wonderful post. Well, all of Rinpoche’s posts are wonderful because they are informative and thought-provoking. I love the general pervasive mindset of the ancient Indians. They were progressive, organized in their thinking and are willing to push conventional thought through observation and thorough investigation.

    The contrasting atmosphere of wealth and power with the extreme poverty, downtrodden and the war-mongering because suitable environment in India for a great pursuit of spirituality – the answer to man’s existence. Hence, the conditions brought about the thoroughly original theory of reincarnation. I do not know of any other culture that carries this thought of a man’s consciousness taking rebirth again and again after death due to the force of karma.

    Hence, I am not surprised that there were other theories that were contrary to the theory of karma and reincarnation. I find it an evidence of the progressive nature of ancient Indian society. I am sure the theory of karma and reincarnation was an offbeat theory at first but survive culture and time because it was logical and humanistic.

    In India, there were many great masters during, before and after the Buddha but almost none of them became as popular as the Buddha. In part, it is due to the timeless and logical nature of his doctrine along with the transformative qualities of his teachings. Reading about these offbeat theories of annihilism just reminds me of the great culture that bred such questioning theories and masters. More importantly, it reminds me that such questioning mind brought about the sublime Buddha and his equally sublime Buddha.

  11. henry ooi on Oct 8, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    Maybe reincarnation may be proven by science in 500, 1000 etc. years from now. Maybe it will never be proven. I think it may not be proven because reincarnation may not be calculated or quantified. I think it takes a mind that has gone through transformational meditation and having acquired compassion and wisdom with the clarity of emptiness. The Buddha experienced, saw and gained all these enlightened qualities but to prove them to others who were unenlightened was another thing.

    No one has proof of an all-creator god also. Who is this all-creator god? How does he look like? Where was he born? When was he born? How was he born? Did he have parents? Is he male or female, etc.?

    Scientific discoveries like electricity, atoms, penicillin, rockets, etc. can be proven because those scientists were brilliantly knowledgeable and highly intelligent. But that did not mean they have enlightened attainments. Even an enlightened scientist still may not prove to others who are unenlightened of reincarnation, just like the greatest scientist of all times, The Buddha.

    Accepting and believing in reincarnation makes me more aware not to do actions that may cause harm to others but instead do more deeds to benefit instead.

  12. James Long on Oct 8, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Due to selfishness, we hurt others direct or indirectly such as lying, stealing, killing etc…we created negative Karma. Some might say: I do not believe in Karma, so what for I hold vow or be a vegetarian?

    Even if we do not believe in Karma or re-incarnation, don’t you think that, do not lie, do not steal and do not kill make us a good person? We will respect ourselves later when we look back what we have done. If not there will be a lot of regret and insecurity.

    In fact, after so many years of proved result from the Master, who am I to judge and say they are wrong?

  13. Joy on Oct 8, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Buddhism is about the only philosophical “religion” or “way of life”… that gives a clear understanding of where we could end up after this life stops… why reincarnation exist. I believe it exist simply because to have just your mind existing in just this one sad finite life is hard to believe.

    Even believing one will ascend in to the heavens explains the continuity of the mind/soul. It obviously does not seize to exist after you are pronounced dead. And how does one explain all the souls that are stuck/lurking here on this planet appearing as “spirits” after passing? Almost all major “religions” acknowledge their existence, otherwise we won’t hear about ghost and exorcism. There wouldn’t be a hell realm nor a heaven in the teachings. They’ve all got special prayers/rituals to help these beings to migrate, what for if life stops when the heart stops.

    So reincarnation definitely exist and this is how my take of it…
    It simply means you take on a new form after this present form ends. Hence the importance of cause and effect (karma) which explains so many of our experiences, likes and dislikes now, and the experiences we’ll have in the next life form. These imprints must have happened before, perhaps in a previous life, which explains why we have certain gifted people with a talent they don’t need much learning, just a refresher will trigger their “genius”…e.g. child prodigies, mozart, da Vinci, Michelangelo etc.
    The planet also operate on these laws.
    We can see this at it’s evidence is in the global warming we’re experiencing now.

    Based on so much truth around us, I find Buddhism helps us put it in the best logical perspective which tells us why cultivating virtues and compassion now will create the imprints of good experiences in the next life.

    If I never come across Buddhism… I think my mind would still be puzzled, perhaps even more confused by the supernatural, the great extremism of those in comfort and those sufferings on this earth. I would probably still be searching for the answers of life… and like many perhaps fall prey to the bliss of ignorance, which I hope not.

    Thank you Rinpoche for a great reminder of the precious human life…

  14. Steve Tobias on Oct 8, 2011 at 8:35 am

    Thank you for the article Rinpoche.

    I think many people believe in rebirth without knowing it.

    My friend said to me once (rhetorically) “what happens when we die, everything turns black? That’s messed up.”

    I thought to myself that this view is actually rebirth. If anyone experiences or “sees” black then it means the mind continues after the body. If the mind continues after the body then it must go through changes or go somewhere eventually. If it goes through changes or goes somewhere then there must be a force which determines it. If there’s a force that determines it then it cannot inherently exist or come from a higher power or from nowhere, it must be interrelated and have cause and effect behind it. This is what karma describes.

    If one believes in heaven or hell it’s rebirth, because the mind moves on and takes a new bodily form. And then since logically all phenomena are impermanent, one must leave and then go somewhere else, so then it matches the Buddhist concept of rebirth.

    I think in general there is an intuitive sense that there’s something unique about consciousness, and it doesn’t “wipe out” for no reason. If it wiped out at death then why doesn’t it wipe out now? And this deals with a “lower level” of understanding.

    Higher level of understanding: monks who enter the jhanas or deep tantric meditation can remember previous lives. They can see the mind as it is and become very familiar with its nature. Independently they meditate and come to the same conclusions. Then when they explain, even through perfect speech, people reject or it’s difficult to understand. They haven’t meditated though, or don’t have the merit, or haven’t investigated it at a basic level.

    IMO all conclusions, even at a low level of understanding, point to rebirth. It should be easy to trust the high monks, lamas, even HH the Dalai Lama, who are pure and without our own defilements, with much greater knowledge and wisdom that immediately penetrates and makes us think. When their words or actions penetrate our minds we feel inspired and great, maybe learned something, but when their subject changes to rebirth we ignore? Doesn’t make sense.

  15. wanwaimeng on Oct 8, 2011 at 1:25 am

    This is a very interesting article I must read it again I am sure I will find a lot more substance from it. Buddhist philosophies if we allow has a lot of benefits. If we wish to discount karma and rebirth, we will have peace if we for example live our lives skilfully!

  16. Wendyyyho on Oct 7, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    It is quite illogical not to believe in reincarnation even if we can’t prove it at this point of time.

    We have heard of many people recalling their previous lives. There are people who can describe a place in their previous life so well that when they actually go to that place it is exactly what they described.

    There was a case where the father of a man reincarnated as his son and his son could tell him things he said to him in his previous life that only both of them knew about.

    There are other cases and most of these cases are experienced by people who are not Buddhist or even heard of the concept of rebirth.

    Also, how do we explain why everyone is born different. If we are created by God then why God is so unfair that some are more blessed than others?

    Therefore, the only logical explanation is that there must be rebirth and due to different karma created in our previous lives, we experience different situation in this life.

  17. Andrew James Boon on Oct 7, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    I do like articles like these because it sheds light on both side of the fence and gives on the opportunity to contemplate and actually come to our own conclusions on the topic at hand.

    Personally, I do believe there is life after death as there are strong “examples” or situations which does point to that. However, can I conclusively prove to anyone, apart from myself, that it does indeed exist, beyond a doubt, perhaps not!

    But then again if we need conclusive proof, beyond a doubt, for anything to exist, then, don’t we even question our very own existence? I liken it to breathing. No one had to prove to us that we need to breathe to survive. We do it subconsciously… we just do.

    I speak for myself when I say this, but I do take a leap of faith when it comes to certain things. But within reason. It has to be somewhat logical to begin with of course. Sometimes the unexplainable are merely indications of my own shortcomings when it comes to understanding and knowledge.

    As Rinpoche clearly shared in a teaching recently… if indeed reincarnation exists and we have our spiritual practice to guide us, we should be fine in our next life. However should reincarnation not exist, our spiritual practice has made us better people while in this so called finite life. Nothing wrong with that! So all in all, it is a win win situation. 🙂

    • Doreen Teoh on Oct 13, 2011 at 5:31 pm

      Hi Andrew, thank you for sharing the last paragraph, it is so true, we have everything to gain and nothing too lose. Everyone wants a guarantee or warranty when we buy goods and services, this is best buy we can obtained for ourself when we die. Do what is good in this life and follow our spiritual practise no matter what happens, we are guarantee be fine.

  18. MayOng on Oct 7, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Can we just dismiss the idea of “rebirth” when we hear stories of people looking at their own body lying down on the operations table while they were afloat up in the ceiling in the same room.

    Clearly, this shows we have a traveling non-physical form and mind that exist out of the physical human body.

    So how do we proof that if our karmic actions in this life or past lives will benefit us in future lives? It can be tested here and now when we are still alive.

    If we decide to be kind in words and deeds to any being first thing in the morning when we get up, we will have a happier day. The decision comes from making up our mind about the action we will take that day. In Buddhism we are taught “being mindful”. If we are careful and mindful in every action (karma) we do daily, we can expect certain fruitful results from it. That is proof that positive mind have positive results already.

    I can conclude through this logic that if we had been practicing virtue in past lives, we would have gain the result we achieved in this life. In the same logical conclusion, if we plant good deeds now, we can reap the benefit in our future lives. The conclusion is we can proof certain results by taking appropriate actions, and we decide whether its positive or negative action to gain the result that we want. We do not need physical proof to do that. The result speaks for itself.

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  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 2. 2024 02:06 PM
    Very interesting and informative article. In most cultures, women is consider as lower in status compared with men. Ancient times in India, man took the lead while women is seconded. But times has changed for the better where women are not degraded in society. They receive equal recognition, appreciation, and stature, yet in countries and places around the world, women are still viewed as inferior and treated accordingly. But in Buddhism women have been increasing in number and has proven that many of them have gained full enlightenment in a female body. In Buddhism is concerned there’s no discrimination toward women ,both men and women are equal. There‘s many female Mahasiddhas and Yoginis as in this blog. May it inspired many more to come. Interesting article and its great sharing knowledge.
    Thank you Rinpoche with folded hands,

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/courtesans-of-ancient-india.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 2. 2024 02:05 PM
    Sleep paralysis is a feeling of being conscious but unable to move. It occurs when a person passes between stages of wakefulness and sleep. During these transitions, one may be unable to move or speak for a few seconds up to a few minutes. Some people may also feel pressure or a sense of choking. Sleep paralysis is a temporary inability to move or speak. It’s not harmful and should pass quickly, but at times can be frightening. It can affect anyone but is most common in young adults and they might have hallucination. The scary facts about sleep paralysis is those who suffer from it have said it felt like someone was choking them on their chest so they could not breathe.
    As for me I have not experience as such before as least i know now what i can to do.
    Thank you Vinnie Tan for sharing. Interesting read of these stories related to sleep paralysis.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/sleep-paralysis-medical-or-paranormal.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 2. 2024 02:03 PM
    nteresting as this texts been composed after being inspired to do so . That’s interesting as this nature are traditionally considered exceptionally potent in their blessings if the claim of divine inspiration is authentic. According to the account in the introduction, the author composed this text after being divinely inspired to do so. It’s a very rare kind and its acceptance been recognised and received praise by very high lamas of our tradition. Reading this article tell us all of how powerful Dorje Shugden when we invoke in our prayers.
    Interesting read of the short biography of Ven. Geshe Kunchok Gyaltsen, the author of Mass of Vajra Fire.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/mass-of-vajra-fire-invocation-of-the-mighty-dorje-shugden.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 2. 2024 02:01 PM
    That’s wonderful Rinpoche has composed prayers in English so as everyone could recite and practice. For beginners is such a meaningful insights and perspectives without commitments and initiation. Moreover each prayers is for a specific blessing that helps practitioners to gain attainments and overcome obstacles. Easy and simple for everyone to start off.
    We are fortunate that everything Rinpoche did brought tremendous benefit to all sentient beings. Whatever prayers Rinpoche has composed are especially potent with blessings.
    Thank you Rinpoche and writers for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/holy-prayers-to-invoke-the-divine.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Apr 2. 2024 01:59 PM
    A great article , revisit this again of Tibetan Lamas and their dogs. As now I have a pet doggie with me, I came to understand more of them . Dogs are the most amazing creatures, they give us unconditional love. For me, they are the role model for being alive. Buddhists believe dogs also have the potential to become enlightened and can teach us about responsibility, love, and other Buddhist principles. The Q & A by Sandra Klein’s interview with the Venerable Gonsar Rinpoche gave us a better understanding and very informative of Tibetan dogs under Lamas care. ccording to the Buddha Dharma, all sentient beings have Buddha nature — from ants to humans. Though we often look at dogs as wonderful companions an teach us to embrace Buddhist principles. They, themselves, embody many of these principles.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this great sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/dogs-in-tibetan-monasteries.html
  • Brent
    Tuesday, Mar 26. 2024 04:47 PM
    Living with my wife, whose world is meticulously painted with the hues of OCD, is a journey that intertwines the essence of love with the complexities of the human mind. Her relentless pursuit of cleanliness and order, transforming even the most negligible corner into a testament of organization, often dances on the fine line between admiration and frustration. The sight of her steering clear from trash bins as if they were labyrinths of chaos, serves as a poignant reminder of the battles she fights within. Yet, it’s through these very battles that I’ve learned the profound language of patience and the unspoken strength of support. Therapy, in its gentle embrace, has been a beacon of light for her, guiding her through the stormy seas of OCD. It has not only offered her solace but has also unveiled the strength of her spirit, teaching us both the beauty of resilience. As she journeys through the pathways of healing, I stand by her, a testament to the power of love and the enduring promise of hope. Together, we navigate the complexities of her world, discovering that within the challenges lie opportunities for growth, understanding, and an unbreakable bond. https://www.mindfullyaliveonline.com/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-ocd/
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 15. 2024 07:31 PM
    Venerable Ajahn Chah was a Thai Buddhist teacher of the Buddhadhamma and a founder of two major monasteries in the Thai Forest Tradition. Well respected and loved as a man of great wisdom, he was also instrumental in establishing Theravada Buddhism in the West. Interesting life story, how he chose to leave the settled monastic life and became a wandering ascetic. Walking across Thailand, lived in forests, caves and cremation grounds while learning from the meditation monks of the Forest of various monasteries. He wandered through the countryside in quest of quiet and secluded places for developing meditation. He even lived in tiger and cobra infested jungles, using reflections on death to penetrate to the true meaning of life. After years of wandering, Venerable Ajahn Chah established a monastery where he taught simple, practice-based form of meditation, and attracted a numerous of students including western foreigners. He was one of the greatest Dhamma teachers of the modern era. His wise teachings have continued to guide thousands of people along the path of Dharma. Venerable Ajahn Chah’s teachings of the Thai Forest Tradition gradually spread across all over the world. Several of Ajahn Chah’s Western students have since established monasteries throughout the world. Just in Thailand itself, there are more than 300 branch monasteries in Ajahn Chah’s tradition. Ven erable Ajahn Chah used his ill health as a teaching point, emphasizing that it was a living example of the impermanence of all things and reminded people to endeavour to find a true refuge within themselves. The legacy of Venerable Ajahn Chah’s teachings and legacy continues into the modern age.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this great sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/venerable-ajahn-chah-the-forest-monk.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 15. 2024 07:30 PM
    Wonderful blog written on the practice of Kalarupa for us to understand better. As an emanation of Manjushri, Kalarupa’s practice helps us to destroy ignorance and to develop wisdom overcoming our anger and suffering . Awesome Kalarupa manifested in multiple forms to help sentient beings who personifies enlightenment by the conquest of anger. Kalarupa also regard as one of the three main Dharma protectors of the Gelugpa is extremely fierce and ugly, and tames all kinds of spiritual ugliness. The fierceness of his iconography teaches us to remind ourselves that all the causes and effects of anger arising from ignorance are dreadful and distorted.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Antionette for this detailed sharing,

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/kalarupa.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 15. 2024 07:27 PM
    Nepal is a very spiritual country, having a huge Dorje Shugden mural in Kathmandu, is indeed a big achievement for Kechara. Located on Charkhal Road in Dilli Bazaar, the mural can be found midway between our two Dorje Shugden chapels which are in Putalisadak and Chabahil. It is also very close to one of Kathmandu’s largest shopping malls. Many locals , tourist will be able to connect them to a powerful deity that is so closely associated with their culture. Well the mural not only beautiful but also full of symbolism and everyone merely by seeing it is blessed. Thanks to those talented artists and generous sponsors making it a success.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/travel/spectacular-dorje-shugden-mural-in-kathmandu-nepal.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Mar 15. 2024 07:24 PM
    All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on. Letting go helps us to live in a more peaceful state of mind and helps restore our balance. A reminder for us all to go of attachment and meditating on impermanence and emptiness. We are to relinquish the domination of our ego and its habits to transform ourselves. A great reminder not to waste our previous life.
    Quoted Ceasing to do evil, Cultivating the good, Purifying the heart .
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing such a meaningful teachings with folded hands.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/pointing-the-staff-at-the-old-man.html
  • james belich
    Friday, Mar 8. 2024 09:43 PM
    Winning the lottery was part of my dreams, I tried so hard to win big but all to no avail, until I came across Dr Lucas online who made my dreams come through and made me win 10 million dollars. I was a logistics manager who lives in Lancaster, S.C. and works about an hour’s drive away, in Charlotte, N.C., I stopped at a store to buy a scratch-off lottery ticket during my lunch break, because Dr Lucas gave me all the assurance that the numbers are not going to fail after I did all he asked me to do. Dr lucas is a powerful Dr that is on a mission to eradicate poverty from people’s lives and i have confirmed that by winning $10 million with the numbers he provided for me, it is my promise to tell the world about my experience with Dr Lucas and that’s what I’m doing now, you can win the lottery fast with the help of Dr Lucas he is tested and trusted Email: Drlucasspelltemple@gmail. com or WhatsApp +234 904 794 3567 he will help you.
  • james belich
    Friday, Mar 8. 2024 09:42 PM
    Winning the lottery was part of my dreams, I tried so hard to win big but all to no avail, until I came across Dr Lucas online who made my dreams come through and made me win 10 million dollars. I was a logistics manager who lives in Lancaster, S.C. and works about an hour’s drive away, in Charlotte, N.C., I stopped at a store to buy a scratch-off lottery ticket during my lunch break, because Dr Lucas gave me all the assurance that the numbers are not going to fail after I did all he asked me to do. Dr lucas is a powerful Dr that is on a mission to eradicate poverty from people’s lives and i have confirmed that by winning $10 million with the numbers he provided for me, it is my promise to tell the world about my experience with Dr Lucas and that’s what I’m doing now, you can win the lottery fast with the help of Dr Lucas he is tested and trusted Email: Drlucasspelltemple@gmail.com or WhatsApp +234 904 794 3567 he will help you.
  • lee
    Thursday, Mar 7. 2024 07:06 PM
    We are members of the Buddhist Temple in Taman Desa Jaya, Kepong, Kuala Lumpur and we have been issued membership by the president (DATUK YIP KUM FOOK), we are very sad because we are the foundation of this Temple

    Now we can know who is always messing with people, and he always cheats money and women, he even uses Buddhism to find money.

    Also, need to be careful with his brother-in-law (Simon Low Kok Meng) because he is a spy (CID) for DATUK YIP KUM FOOK and we will write some letters to AGONG SULTAN IBRAHIM IBN ALMARHUM SULTAN ISKANDAR as soon as possible.

    From Jesmond Yap, Kepong Baru…Kuala Lumpur
  • Phoenix the Shaman Elder
    Thursday, Mar 7. 2024 01:40 AM
    The matriarchal cultures of the grandmothers have specific symbolism of animism shamanism, such as the horse, especially the blue horse, and the deer. These are two main symbols of a shaman woman and you can find them in many cultural folk lore, especially the Russian, Slavic, Siberian, Nordic, Finland, and Norway. It’s nice to see the Matriarchal Shaman Animism diety represented in Chinese.
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Mar 4. 2024 06:59 PM
    An inspiring act of a selfless Lama feeding strays whether its night or day. Truly an example for us all to feed those lonely strays . Yes I do agree compassion starts with feeding strays. Reading this blog again to refresh myself to do more. Strays animals generally lead a life of poor welfare on the street. Feeding strays is a compassionate act.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Anila for this sharing.


    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/rinpoche-through-my-eyes-compassion-starts-with-feeding-strays

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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The Unknown

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

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According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn\'t this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
4 years ago
According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn't this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden\'s blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
4 years ago
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden's blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
4 years ago
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat\'s doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
4 years ago
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat's doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
4 years ago
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
4 years ago
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
4 years ago
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
It\'s very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it\'s very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
4 years ago
It's very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it's very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
4 years ago
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
4 years ago
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
5 years 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)
5 years 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)
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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!
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
5 years ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
5 years 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.
5 years 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.
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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!!!
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
5 years ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years 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
5 years ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
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    5 years ago
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CHAT PICTURES

Powerful Dorje Shugden puja @ Jalan Seang Tek, Penang. Every Saturday, 3 pm. Remove obstacles and grant blessings to fulfil wishes. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta. 6th April 2024
6 days ago
Powerful Dorje Shugden puja @ Jalan Seang Tek, Penang. Every Saturday, 3 pm. Remove obstacles and grant blessings to fulfil wishes. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta. 6th April 2024
Rejoice to the volunteers (also kind sponsors) who cleaned the Gyenze Chapel and made abundant offerings to Gyenze. ~ Alice
2 weeks ago
Rejoice to the volunteers (also kind sponsors) who cleaned the Gyenze Chapel and made abundant offerings to Gyenze. ~ Alice
Offered beautiful flowers abundantly to Gyenze. ~ Alice
2 weeks ago
Offered beautiful flowers abundantly to Gyenze. ~ Alice
Offered beautiful flowers abundantly to Gyenze. ~ Alice
2 weeks ago
Offered beautiful flowers abundantly to Gyenze. ~ Alice
Our weekly Dorje Shugden Puja @ 23/3/2024 . William, as the umze is seen here burning incense powder as we are about to recite the Sangsol Prayer to Dorje Shugden composed by Ganden Serkong. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
3 weeks ago
Our weekly Dorje Shugden Puja @ 23/3/2024 . William, as the umze is seen here burning incense powder as we are about to recite the Sangsol Prayer to Dorje Shugden composed by Ganden Serkong. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
And here's Mr Wong of KSK Ipoh who dropped by to pray and offered some donation to the Chapel. Kechara Penang Study Group. Pic by Siew Hong & uploaded by Jacinta.
4 weeks ago
And here's Mr Wong of KSK Ipoh who dropped by to pray and offered some donation to the Chapel. Kechara Penang Study Group. Pic by Siew Hong & uploaded by Jacinta.
Today's puja (16/3/2024) ended around 420pm, Jacinta was the umze of the day. Pic by Siew Hong. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
4 weeks ago
Today's puja (16/3/2024) ended around 420pm, Jacinta was the umze of the day. Pic by Siew Hong. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Group photo taken after the last session, sealed with King of Prayers. Come and join us next time! Sayonara - 9-10th March 2024 - Kechara Penang DS Retreat by Jacinta.
1 month ago
Group photo taken after the last session, sealed with King of Prayers. Come and join us next time! Sayonara - 9-10th March 2024 - Kechara Penang DS Retreat by Jacinta.
Abundance altar! Fruits, flowers, Mee Koo (traditional Penang buns), Bee Hoon, sourdoughs and snacks are some of the offerings to Rinpoche, Buddhas & Bodhisattvas. Kechara Penang Dorje Shugden Retreat 9-10th March, 2024 by Jacinta.
1 month ago
Abundance altar! Fruits, flowers, Mee Koo (traditional Penang buns), Bee Hoon, sourdoughs and snacks are some of the offerings to Rinpoche, Buddhas & Bodhisattvas. Kechara Penang Dorje Shugden Retreat 9-10th March, 2024 by Jacinta.
Siew Hong, one of retreatants and an active member of Kechara Penang group proudly presented her torma to be used during the Kalarupa puja. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
1 month ago
Siew Hong, one of retreatants and an active member of Kechara Penang group proudly presented her torma to be used during the Kalarupa puja. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
Torma making was taught by Pastor Seng Piow and held one day before the retreat. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
1 month ago
Torma making was taught by Pastor Seng Piow and held one day before the retreat. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
Penang Dorje Shugden Retreat cum Puja, 9-10th March 2024 led by Pastor Seng Piow with 12 retreatants. Uploaded by Jacinta
1 month ago
Penang Dorje Shugden Retreat cum Puja, 9-10th March 2024 led by Pastor Seng Piow with 12 retreatants. Uploaded by Jacinta
The celebration ended with a Dorje Shugden puja, dedicated to all the sponsors, our loved ones and as well as for the happiness & good health for all sentient beings. May Rinpoche return swiftly too and taking this opportunity wishing all Happy Chinese New Year and Gong Xi Fa Cai from all of us, Kechara Penang Study Group. Uploaded by Jacinta.
2 months ago
The celebration ended with a Dorje Shugden puja, dedicated to all the sponsors, our loved ones and as well as for the happiness & good health for all sentient beings. May Rinpoche return swiftly too and taking this opportunity wishing all Happy Chinese New Year and Gong Xi Fa Cai from all of us, Kechara Penang Study Group. Uploaded by Jacinta.
Seen here, Pastor Seng Piow set off firecrackers - welcoming of the upcoming year with enthusiasm and positive energy. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
2 months ago
Seen here, Pastor Seng Piow set off firecrackers - welcoming of the upcoming year with enthusiasm and positive energy. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
In this pic, Pastor Seng Piow is sharing Dharma with newbies ~ Sharyn's friends. It's always good to make light offerings at the beginning of new year. By making light offerings, you are able to dispel the darkness of ignorance and achieve wisdom. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
2 months ago
In this pic, Pastor Seng Piow is sharing Dharma with newbies ~ Sharyn's friends. It's always good to make light offerings at the beginning of new year. By making light offerings, you are able to dispel the darkness of ignorance and achieve wisdom. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
One the day of Losar (new lunar year), it is always beneficial for Buddhist practitioners to get together in making abundant offerings to Buddhas on the altar to usher in goodness, prosperity and well-being of our loved ones. It's more auspicious this year as Losar and the Chinese New Year begin on the same date, 10th Feb, 2024. Back in Penang, our Kechara members came together to decorate the altar with abundance offerings for Dorje Shugden puja @3pm. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
2 months ago
One the day of Losar (new lunar year), it is always beneficial for Buddhist practitioners to get together in making abundant offerings to Buddhas on the altar to usher in goodness, prosperity and well-being of our loved ones. It's more auspicious this year as Losar and the Chinese New Year begin on the same date, 10th Feb, 2024. Back in Penang, our Kechara members came together to decorate the altar with abundance offerings for Dorje Shugden puja @3pm. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Mr. Dared Lim was offering water bowls on behalf of Kechara Ipoh Study Group. (Kin Hoe)
2 months ago
Mr. Dared Lim was offering water bowls on behalf of Kechara Ipoh Study Group. (Kin Hoe)
Jun from Ipoh was offering mandarin oranges to Mother Tara and The Three Jewels. (Kin Hoe)
2 months ago
Jun from Ipoh was offering mandarin oranges to Mother Tara and The Three Jewels. (Kin Hoe)
Prior to our puja in Ipoh, Mr. & Mrs. Cheah Fook Wan were preparing for the offerings to the Buddhas. (Kin Hoe)
2 months ago
Prior to our puja in Ipoh, Mr. & Mrs. Cheah Fook Wan were preparing for the offerings to the Buddhas. (Kin Hoe)
On Sunday afternoon, Kechara Ipoh Study Group has carried out Mother Tara prayer recitations in Ipoh. (Kin Hoe)
2 months ago
On Sunday afternoon, Kechara Ipoh Study Group has carried out Mother Tara prayer recitations in Ipoh. (Kin Hoe)
Some of the best shots taken during Thaipusam in Penang. Swee Bee, Huey, Tang KS, Nathan, Choong SH and Jacinta volunteered. Wai Meng came all the way from KL to help out. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
2 months ago
Some of the best shots taken during Thaipusam in Penang. Swee Bee, Huey, Tang KS, Nathan, Choong SH and Jacinta volunteered. Wai Meng came all the way from KL to help out. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
Simple yet powerful ally ~ Bhagawan Dorje Shuden. Kechara Penang Study Group consists of Chien Seong, Hue, Choong SH, Tang KS, Swee Bee and Jacinta. Wai Meng came all the way from KL to help out. Uploaded by Jacinta.
2 months ago
Simple yet powerful ally ~ Bhagawan Dorje Shuden. Kechara Penang Study Group consists of Chien Seong, Hue, Choong SH, Tang KS, Swee Bee and Jacinta. Wai Meng came all the way from KL to help out. Uploaded by Jacinta.
Thaipusam in Penang. Some of the best shots. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
2 months ago
Thaipusam in Penang. Some of the best shots. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
Nothing beats having a sacred audience with our lineage lamas. It's not selfie or wefie, but we have the best 'groufie'!!! 20th Jan 2024, Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
3 months ago
Nothing beats having a sacred audience with our lineage lamas. It's not selfie or wefie, but we have the best 'groufie'!!! 20th Jan 2024, Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Welcoming our lineage Gurus to our Penang Chapel today! Pastor Seng Piow explained the significance of having Guru Tree and introduced to us our lineage lamas, Buddhas, deities, protectors and etc.
3 months ago
Welcoming our lineage Gurus to our Penang Chapel today! Pastor Seng Piow explained the significance of having Guru Tree and introduced to us our lineage lamas, Buddhas, deities, protectors and etc.
Umze for the day was Siew Hong. She's just been with us for slightly more than a year now but she's proven her capability in leading the puja. Our Penang group members are so proud of her and her commitment in attending the weekly puja. Despite being eloquence and smart, she has beautiful chant as well. When she leads, make sure you are there to hear her chant for yourself! Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
3 months ago
Umze for the day was Siew Hong. She's just been with us for slightly more than a year now but she's proven her capability in leading the puja. Our Penang group members are so proud of her and her commitment in attending the weekly puja. Despite being eloquence and smart, she has beautiful chant as well. When she leads, make sure you are there to hear her chant for yourself! Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Umze for the day was Siew Hong. She's just been with us for slightly more than a year now but she's proven her capability in leading the puja. Our Penang group members are so proud of her and her commitment in attending the weekly puja. Despite being eloquence and smart, she has beautiful chant as well. When she leads, make sure you are there to hear her chant for yourself! Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
3 months ago
Umze for the day was Siew Hong. She's just been with us for slightly more than a year now but she's proven her capability in leading the puja. Our Penang group members are so proud of her and her commitment in attending the weekly puja. Despite being eloquence and smart, she has beautiful chant as well. When she leads, make sure you are there to hear her chant for yourself! Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Tara Recitation is on now at KISG - Wai Meng
4 months ago
Tara Recitation is on now at KISG - Wai Meng
Photo from Wan Wai Meng
4 months ago
Photo from Wan Wai Meng
A sea of yellow ~usually in Tibetan Buddhism yellow represents growth. We prayed that our Penang group will grow in terms of people, wealth and attainments too. _/\_ Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
4 months ago
A sea of yellow ~usually in Tibetan Buddhism yellow represents growth. We prayed that our Penang group will grow in terms of people, wealth and attainments too. _/_ Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
After Dorje Shugden puja @3pm, we had Rinpoche's Swift Return puja too. We laughed as Sis Swee Bee was commenting that Tang should smile ~ here's the reason why we laughed.  Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta Goh
4 months ago
After Dorje Shugden puja @3pm, we had Rinpoche's Swift Return puja too. We laughed as Sis Swee Bee was commenting that Tang should smile ~ here's the reason why we laughed. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta Goh
4 months ago
Today's (9/12/2023)Dorje Shugden puja led by Gordon. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
4 months ago
Today's (9/12/2023)Dorje Shugden puja led by Gordon. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
4 months ago
4 months ago
Dharma sharing by Hue before we proceeded with DS puja & Rinpoche Swift Return puja. Hue is one of the long time Kechara Penang members and he comes to puja regularly. He shared that he truly believes that Dorje Shugden and Rinpoche always there guiding him. He shared how sometimes DS will give him hints to avert troubles ahead or to alert him when he 'misbehaved'. Hope many will come to know more about this powerful Dharma Protector, Dorje Shugden aka DS. Having Dorje Shugden is like having a powerful ally that will protect us day and night. Just trust Him and have faith. Kechara Penang Study Group, 25/11/2023 by Jacinta.
5 months ago
Dharma sharing by Hue before we proceeded with DS puja & Rinpoche Swift Return puja. Hue is one of the long time Kechara Penang members and he comes to puja regularly. He shared that he truly believes that Dorje Shugden and Rinpoche always there guiding him. He shared how sometimes DS will give him hints to avert troubles ahead or to alert him when he 'misbehaved'. Hope many will come to know more about this powerful Dharma Protector, Dorje Shugden aka DS. Having Dorje Shugden is like having a powerful ally that will protect us day and night. Just trust Him and have faith. Kechara Penang Study Group, 25/11/2023 by Jacinta.
Kechara Penang Study Group had our weekly DS puja , led by our beloved sis Swee Bee and serkym by Mr. Lee. After that, we completed Swift Return puja also. 18th Nov 2023. By Jacinta
5 months ago
Kechara Penang Study Group had our weekly DS puja , led by our beloved sis Swee Bee and serkym by Mr. Lee. After that, we completed Swift Return puja also. 18th Nov 2023. By Jacinta
#Back2back 11th Nov 2023 Dorje Shugden puja & Rinpoche's Swift Return puja @Penang Chapel, 49 Jalan Seang Tek, Georgetown, Pulau Pinang. Every Saturday @3pm/5pm. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
5 months ago
#Back2back 11th Nov 2023 Dorje Shugden puja & Rinpoche's Swift Return puja @Penang Chapel, 49 Jalan Seang Tek, Georgetown, Pulau Pinang. Every Saturday @3pm/5pm. Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
Pic: Rinpoche Swift Return puja ~ 21/10/23 Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
6 months ago
Pic: Rinpoche Swift Return puja ~ 21/10/23 Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta.
#Backtoback A few months back, Kechara Penang Study Group started to have two pujas consecutively on Saturday. Dorje Shugden puja @3pm and thereafter Rinpoche Swift Return puja. This can only be achieved due to the committed members from Penang. A big round of applause...... Pic : DS puja on 21/10/2023 Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
6 months ago
#Backtoback A few months back, Kechara Penang Study Group started to have two pujas consecutively on Saturday. Dorje Shugden puja @3pm and thereafter Rinpoche Swift Return puja. This can only be achieved due to the committed members from Penang. A big round of applause...... Pic : DS puja on 21/10/2023 Kechara Penang Study Group by Jacinta
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Dorje Shugden
Click to watch my talk about Dorje Shugden....