Buried Secrets – Did God have A Wife?

Jan 17, 2013 | Views: 2,412

(By Tsem Rinpoche)

Dear students and friends,

Awhile ago, I came across a thought provoking BBC documentary. The presenter, Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou, is a biblical scholar, and in the documentary she looks at the Bible as ancient literature, not as a holy scripture. She discusses the origins of the Bible, and centralizes this documentary around 2 main topics: “Monotheism vs Polytheism” and “Did God Have A Wife“. Although the title of the documentary might be ‘catchy’, it is a serious scholarly study and very thorough with evidence to support her theory. When I mention her theory, I mean her theory.

BBC is a world established organization that funds very educational programs and reputable, yet it is always good to question, do your research, contemplate and come to your own conclusions. Doing so may actually strengthen your faith or otherwise belief systems. This is what Dr Francesca did herself… she had questions, she did her research, discussed with others and concluded on certain findings herself. In her case, she backed up her findings with archeological evidence. Very well spoken Professor.

This is a modern similarity to the monastic educational system. In Gaden Monastery, the monks have debate sessions every day. They look at a subject matter from all different angles, and question each other back and forth. Pros and cons are discussed within our faith.

I am sharing this video not to challenge the Christian faith but as an educational purpose. I have been promoting interfaith harmony all my life… to me, all religions are beautiful because every authentic religious faith have produced wonderful people and benefits. Even free thinkers are perfectly wonderful if that is what benefits them and helps them to be a good person. It’s only when we don’t practice compassion, tolerance, love and forgiveness that we give a bad image to our faith within our faiths.

I do not necessarily endorse the documentary, Dr. Francesca Stavrokopoulou and Richard Dawkins, but I watch a broad spectrum of documentaries to increase by knowledge always.

Do watch the three videos below. The first is of the BBC documentary by Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou and the 2nd and 3rd are talk shows that have very interesting debates. Watch it with an open mind and let me know what you think about it. What questions come to your mind after watching the videos? How do you feel? Do you think it was well researched?

Tsem Rinpoche
 


 

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/The-Bibles-Buried-Secrets-Did-God-Have-a-Wife.mp4

 

Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou is well spoken, highly educated and I find unbiased. Her film is thought provoking. She has done her homework and ventures into something perhaps would be not very acceptable yet she is passionate for her truth. I admire the passion. Truth has many dimensions.

 

 


 

 

 

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Is-The-Bible-Still-Relevant-Today-with-Richard-Dawkins.mp4

 

Very interesting debate. Please take special note of Dr. Lez Henry (28:20) who speaks so well, clear logic and has points to further ponder from his understanding. Truly a very powerful thinker with much learning and contemplations. Extremely eloquent I might add. Must Watch!

 

 

 

 

Or view the video on the server at:
https://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/Revelation-TV-Interview-with-Richard-Dawkins-amazingly.mp4

 

Slightly long, but nevertheless interesting.

 


 

Transcript for the video “Did God have a wife?”

Transcribed by Sean

Proofread by Jean Ai

 

Israel, the home of monotheism. Here, for thousands of years, people have worshiped just one God. Or so the Bible says. But there’s something about this ancient world that the Bible is not telling us.

Jerusalem, the epicenter of the world’s most widespread monotheistic faiths. The Bible states time and again that the forefathers of Jews and Christians believed in one God. But I believe that hidden in its pages is a secret. A very different story, which fundamentally changes the Bible’s claims.

My name is Francesca Stavrakopoulou. I am a Biblical scholar. In this program, I will be looking at the Bible not as holy scripture but as ancient literature. Literature with a religious agenda, which distorts the past.

I’ll also be looking at archeological finds which show that the ancestors of Judaism and Christianity believed in many gods and even that God had a wife. It is a radical revision which rocks the foundation of monotheism to its core and challenges what the religious past means for faith today.

Rabbi: “Okay, there are three classes. The first is definitely my most politically incorrect class but as they always say reality is sometimes politically incorrect…”

For Jews, monotheism is the ancient foundation on which their faith and morality is built and they trace this belief system to Moses and other legendary ancestral figures including Jacob, Isaac and Abraham.

Rabbi: “But what Abraham brought into the world was a concept monotheism, it didn’t evolve…” 

In this, Jerusalem yeshiva, a Jewish School, Rabbi Ken Spiro reminds his students of their heritage. 

Rabbi: “And they said that Abraham is unique for two reasons. A) He is a freethinking super genius. He is able to think outside the box and come to the realization there is one God. But like I said in the first class, imagine being the only person in the whole world to believe an idea which no one else could comprehend or accept. Few of us have the chutzpah, like the nerve, to whisper to our best friends.

The nature of the God of Judaism, who is the God of all humanity, is an infinite being. That outside time and space, no parts, wasn’t born, doesn’t die, doesn’t need anything,” 

Francesca: “And has this always been the nature of the Jewish…”

Rabbi: “Yeah, absolutely. The very unique concept that Judaism brought in was this, this one God, that is the only God, that there’s nothing besides that God. In Judaism, we say that the most essential statement of theology in Judaism is called the Shma, we say, “Here is the Lord our God, the Lord is God, the God is One.” And it doesn’t mean that He’s one versus many. It means that He’s one meaning the only.”

Francesca: “What was about polytheism that was so problematic?”

Rabbi: “I mean in essence, it’s a lie. You just look at the morality of the ancient world which is polytheistic and you will see the radical contrast between the Jewish idea on one hand, and what came out of the pagan world on the other. And it is very, very clear.” 

But it is not only the Jewish faith that upholds monotheism as a core belief. The Jewish Bible is virtually the same as the Christian Old Testament and for this reason monotheism is at the heart of Christianity too.

Walter Moberly is a Christian theologian who believes that monotheism isn’t just an ancient belief. As the first of the 10 commandments, it’s a moral imperative as relevant today as ever.

Walter Moberly: “The false gods would be money, sex and power. And treating those as gods, as ultimate is, I think, an enduring problem.”

The belief in one God is also the first pillar of Islam. In Jerusalem, I met up with Mushin Yusuf, a leading Islamic scholar. He explained to me the Islamic view of God.

Yusuf: “God is the greatest, God is everything. It is the only thing, in the universe. In Islam, there is one God. There is nothing besides God and that’s it. And believing in two, in Islam, is the worst thing that you can think about, you will definitely go to hell. So, you have to believe in only one, not in two.”

This view of God as a universal all-powerful creator unites Islam, Judaism and Christianity, but though they all appear to trace this monotheistic heritage back to Abraham, Islamic monotheism has developed quite differently. Its roots lie in the Quran and its founding traditions, wholly separate from the Bible.

Yusuf: “Abraham that we have in Islam is definitely different from the Abraham which is mentioned in Judaism or Christianity. Abraham in Islam, well he was the first Muslim, and according to Islam, he believed in only one God. And supposedly there is no difference in the belief of Abraham and in the belief of Mohammed or the other Muslims.” 

As a scholar from the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament, it’s the early history of the Jewish and Christian God that interests me. A history the Bible claims to preserve in its pages.

According to the Bible, the roots of monotheism can be traced back 3500 years, to the legendary Abraham and the pact he made with God.

“Worship me and me alone, and I will give the land of Canaan to your descendants.”

So, the Bible’s claim is that Abraham arrived in Canaan and founded an entirely new belief system, a belief system in which the people worship just one God. In the Bible, God’s pact with Abraham was honored by his heirs, Isaac and Jacob. Joseph then took this belief into Egypt. Moses brought it out of Egypt. And then Joshua led the descendants of Abraham, the Israelites, into a war to conquer Canaan and wipe out its indigenous polytheism, establishing monotheism for further thousand years.

Well, that is the story the Bible tells us, but I disagree. When submitted to rigorous analysis, the Biblical texts actually reveal quite another story. I think that the evidence now shows that the people of the Bible believed in many gods and the scribes who composed the Bible did their best to conceal this, but not altogether successfully.

A close reading of the Bible reveals that its people found it hard to stick to monotheism. There was a competitor to the solitary God of Israel, another god whose name appears in the Bible over 130 times, the god Baal. The Bible presents him as a Canaanite God and the most dangerous of foreign gods. The Book of Kings vividly portrays this competition between Baal and the God of Israel.

Prophets gather on Mount Carmel in Northern Israel. The solitary God of the Bible is represented by his faithful prophet Elijah, but fighting against him are 450 prophets of Baal.

They face off, taking turns to summon their God to set alight a sacrificial offering. The prophets of Baal process ritually around the altar calling out to their God, but there is no response. They begin cutting themselves, slashing themselves, deeper and deeper, until the blood flows but there is still no response.

It’s the God of the Bible who likes the sacrifice, who wins the battle. The Bible presents Baal worshipers as ranting, frantic and entranced deviants whose practices are nothing more than impotent superstitions. But in my view, this crude caricature of Baal worshippers is a warning to people to not lapse from faith in one God. It is a sign that the Biblical writers believed that the people were straying.

Such warnings against Baal worship are found again and again in the Bible. So what was the appeal of the God Baal? The answer is revealed by archeological discoveries.

I am on my way to a site which, in terms of our understanding of the Bible, I think is the most important archeological discovery ever, more important than Qumran, the home of the Dead Sea Scrolls. I am in Syria, on my way to the ancient city of Ugarit.

Standing on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Ugarit was in its prime between 1500 and 1200 B.C. Ugarit was a Canaanite city. Until its discovery in 1929, our only guide to Canaanite religion was the Bible. But now, scholars can piece together a detailed and more objective picture of their gods.

As we’re filming, an odd shaped stone is seen sticking out of the ground. It could be a significant find.

We seem to have, at the moment, what looks like three figures. It’s not clear what they might be, but there seems to be a figure right at the bottom there, on the left, who is in a very striding position. Well, that, it could be a God or it could be a king, or a lead figure of some sort.

The dig supervisor believes that this could be a remnant of Canaanite worship. Together, we suspect that the figure on the left could be the God Baal.

Francesca: “So, this, this could be Baal. So, he has got the conical headgear, he is in a smiting position.”

Dig supervisor: “Yes, yes, yes.”

Francesca: “Oh look, there’s Baal.”

Other examples of Baal unearthed at Ugarit are now on display in museums across Syria and France.

This is a fantastic representation of him. It shows him in typical Baal mode. He’s a strong warrior God, a young thrusting virile deity. He has often got his hand raised up as if to strike down his enemies. He is a warrior God but he is also a storm God, and so his weapons are the thunderbolts in his hand and the clouds he rides, the thunder clouds, terrifying his enemies. It’s his ability to bring fertile rains that would have made this Canaanite God so attractive to the ancient Israelites who were dependent on rainfall for their agriculture.

Baal’s appeal explains why time and time again, the Bible rails against Baal worship. The Biblical texts themselves admit that the people repeatedly failed to be loyal to their God. The monotheism of the Bible wasn’t such a solid foundation after all, but I think this foundation is weaker still. The Bible covers up a much more inconvenient truth about God himself.

The Bible claims that the deity at the heart of its monotheism is unique and distinct, quite separate from Canaanite religion, but amongst the discoveries found at Ugarit, is a Canaanite God whose status, character and name challenged this claim. A God who is even more powerful than Baal, the God El.

The text often described him as an ancient deity, the father of the gods, with a long grey beard. This figurine portrays him in his role as the head of the pantheon. He sits enthroned and enrobed, his hand raised in a gesture of blessing.

He is a very benevolent God. His role is to hold the cosmos in order. The other gods praise his wisdom and mercy and his justice. They ask for his permission to carry out various activities. He is also the father of the gods. It’s El who sits at the very apex of the cosmos.

The discovery of this chief Canaanite God uncovers a religious reality disguised in the Bible, for El is also the God of the ancient Israelites. El is God, and the evidence is there for anyone to see.

I have left Syria and I am back in Israel, in what the Bible claims was the heartland of Israelite monotheism. In the Bible, God reveals his personal name. His proper name’s Yahweh. But even today, it is a name so sacred that observant Jews won’t say it out loud. Instead, they refer to HaShem which means “The Name”, or Adonai which means “Lord”.

The divine name Yahweh is unique to ancient Israelite religion. But the reality is that he wasn’t always known as Yahweh. God used to be known by another name, a name still embedded in this part of the world today. A name that contradicts the Biblical claim that its God of monotheism is unique and distinct.

Across the green line from Israel and the West Bank stands an Israeli settlement. Jewish settlers have occupied this Palestinian land because they believe it is close to the setting of a pivotal moment in the Bible. It is the place where one of their legendary patriarchs, Jacob, the grandson of Abraham falls asleep and has a vision. He dreams of a stairway adorned with angels ascending to heaven. God stands next to Jacob and pledges to give him and all his descendants the land on which he is lying. 

Upon waking, the Bible says Jacob names this place after the God he has encountered there. He calls it Bet-el, which means, The House of the God El. Jacob is clear – later on even later he calls his God El, the God of Israel.

The Bible itself reveals that its God has the same name as the chief Canaanite God. The name El occurs elsewhere in the Bible but it tends to be hidden in English translations. For example, here in the Book of Numbers, the writer celebrates a tradition about God leading his people from slavery in Egypt and into The Promised Land, and then in this verse it says, “God, who brings them out of Egypt.” But when we turn to the original Hebrew, the same line, actually it says. “El, who brings the people out of Egypt.”

So according to this poem, El is the God of the Exodus. It is El who liberates the people and brings them to The Promised Land. So is El of the Israelites the same as El of the Canaanites?

‘El’ can be used simply as a generic term for ‘God’ much like we use the word ‘God’ today and there are a lot of examples of that in the Bible. But there are also lots of cases where it’s being used as an actual name.

Here in the Book of Exodus, God is talking to Moses and he says, “I am Yahweh. I revealed myself to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as El of the Wilderness but by my name Yahweh, I did not make myself known.” This text is really clear. It is asserting that Yahweh, the God of the Bible, the God of the Israelites, used to be known as El.

The word ‘El’ is even found in the name of one of the peoples and nations of this land.

Rabbi: “Now, most of us have a lot of confusion about monotheism, like what is monotheism? We think of monotheism as one God. I mean, I’ve heard…”

A hallmark of monotheism is the claim that God is unique but in fact, I think he was a Canaanite God.

I realize that this challenges those for whom the Bible is a book about the one and only true God. So I suggested to Rabbi Ken Spiro that what his faith professes is not what the Biblical text actually show.

Francesca: “Did you think that Israelite religion was always separate and distinct from Canaanite religion?”

Rabbi: “Absolutely. I mean obviously Abraham himself emerges out of the Canaanites and Middle Eastern religions of the ancient Near East but theologically-speaking, radically different from the beginning and has constant warnings throughout the Bible to avoid of all those Canaanite gods.”

Francesca: “When I read the Hebrew Bible closely, it would appear that God is sometimes called El and we know El as a Canaanite God. What do you make of that?”

Rabbi: “The interesting thing about the Jewish God is that it has many, many different names. As a matter of fact, God Himself says to Abraham, several times, “I am giving you a new name and my names are not who I am. They just deal with different attributes of how I interact with you.” We should not confuse the similarity in the use of name ‘El’ being like a force, with the very radical difference between that Jewish concept which may share a similar-sounding name but is very different from the Canaanite God.”

Francesca: “So, how do we understand that reference to Jacob worshipping a God who appears to be called El, the God of Israel?”

Rabbi: “Depending on how you are approaching the text. If you want to look at this as a way of seeing that the ancient Hebrews were polytheistic, you can read it that way. But the traditional Jewish understanding is that it’s God is making a general statement about the spiritual reality, and He is the only power and there is nothing else beside Him.”

To me, Rabbi Spiro’s response demonstrates how people of faith can sometimes see in the Bible what they want, even though they recognize the texts are much more ambiguous than they’d like. In my view, the Bible’s claim that Abraham and the early Israelites worshipped a God distinct from all others is false.

But the Bible makes yet another false claim. The claim that, apart from occasional lapses, the ancient Israelites were essentially true to one God. Evidence now casts serious doubt on this claim. The Israelites worshipped and believed in many gods. Polytheism wasn’t the exception. It was the norm.

Thanks to the finds at Ugarit, we now have a detailed understanding of what polytheism entailed. As the Chief God of the pantheon, El ruled over a Divine Council, a form of heavenly parliament.

This collection of gods was responsible for maintaining order in the cosmos. But the gods were also responsible for what was going in the human, earthly realm. There were gods of dawn and dusk, plague and pestilence, fertility and death. Each god was responsible for his or her patch of earthly and heavenly affairs. Amongst these gods was of course the weather God Baal, and I think there is evidence that show that ancient Israelites also worshipped many gods.

I have come to the very place where the Bible says monotheism was practiced. This is probably where the temple of Jerusalem once stood. Supposedly, the sanctuary where only one God was revered. And yet, if you examine the Biblical texts, you find within them clear references to more than one God here in Jerusalem itself. God, it seems, didn’t always act alone.

“I saw Yahweh sitting on his throne with all the hosts of heaven standing beside him, to the left of him and the right of him.” ~ 1 Kings 22:19

“God has taken His place in the Divine Council. In the midst of the gods He holds judgment.” ~ Psalm 82:1

“Let us make mankind in our image, according to our likeness.” ~ Genesis 1:26

“Who is like you Yahweh among the gods?” ~ Exodus 15:11

The Bible itself is telling us that Israel had its own Divine Council, its own pantheon of gods.

In other words, the religion of the Israelites was polytheistic just like that of the Canaanites. It’s not the conventional view, and it weakens further the foundations of monotheism.

But Herbert Niehr, a Professor of Biblical History, has researched the real beliefs and practices of the ancient Israelites. He feels we are blinded to the polytheism in the Bible’s pages.

Francesca: “So, do you think Israelite religion was polytheistic?”

Prof. Dr Herbert Niehr: “Of course, I do think that and we have many traces of it conserved in the Old Testament. Only if you read the Old Testament through the lens of monotheism, you should neglect several important texts, and you could come to the conclusion that Abraham and Moses were monotheistic believers of Yahweh. But as we now know, it was quite different. In the Old Testament, we have several texts which speak about a Divine Council for example, also in The Psalms and The Prophets. So there are divine beings helping Yahweh to fulfill his duties. For example, if something has to be done on Earth, Yahweh has to send his messenger.

Francesca: “So, when we read texts like, “Who is like you, O Yahweh, among the gods?” this is a reference to the Divine Council, to a polytheism?”

Prof. Niehr: “Yes, and a very clear reference. Of course.”

Francesca: “So, polytheism was normal in ancient Israel too.”

Prof. Niehr: “Yes. It was normal like in any other ancient Middle Eastern cultures.”

It strikes me that Israelite and Canaanite religion were almost one and the same. I asked Rabbi Ken Spiro if the Jewish faith could acknowledge this.

Francesca: “In reading the Hebrew texts, it would seem that the God of Israel is one of many gods. Who are those other gods?”

Rabbi: “They are intermediary forces between the physical world and God that He puts into motion that sort of operates systems in the lower world. So He is talking to His ministers, His council, but He’s supreme and these are not beings that exist alongside Him but underneath Him, that are also His creations that serve a purpose too.”

Francesca: “Does that mean that God is not alone in the heavens?”

Rabbi: “So to speak, on a certain level, yes. Insofar, as God creates intermediary that He holds Council, whatever that means, that in itself is a very interesting statement. And yes, there is such an idea that there are other beings that are below God, subservient to Him.”

I am convinced that these other beings are Gods. For me, the evidence undermines the basis on which the monotheism of Judaism and Christianity is built.

We are now discovering that the ancient Israelites had a great deal more in common with their neighbors and enemies, and that for almost the entire period in which the Biblical story is set, the ancient Israelites were not monotheistic. The Bible is an unreliable source. It’s not telling us the truth about these ancient people.

In fact, I once argued that the Bible is concealing the biggest secret of all. A secret that shakes the very heart of monotheism. God had a female counterpart. A Goddess.

A clue to Goddess worship in the religion of ancient Israel appears in the Bible itself. For most of the readers of the Bible, it’s a secret overlooked, hidden in the text.

It is the word ‘Asherah’. The word is found 40 times, and it describes something which must be destroyed.

Some people think an Asherah is a wooden stick or a pole because in the Bible it can be planted, cut down, pulverized, crushed, uprooted and burned.

But why is the Bible so unsettled by this apparent object? What is it about this Asherah that’s so dangerous?

Archeology now shows us that Asherah wasn’t always an object.

The Louvre Museum in Paris holds some of the best treasures found at the Canaanite city of Ugarit. Its ancient tablets reveals that prominent in the Canaanite pantheon was a powerful Goddess. The wife of the Chief God El. Her name was Asherah.

Asherah’s role was as a life-giving goddess. She was a very respected Goddess. She was the mother of all the gods. She’s associated with fertility and the perpetuation of generations. And as a result, her iconography associated with her is often very distinctive. She has a very distinctive hairstyle that we find associated with many other fertility goddesses in the ancient Near East. 

She has very heavily emphasized breasts, and a very prominent pubic triangle, emphasizing this life-giving quality. This bodily imaging of Asherah has led some scholars to argue that this is erotic imagery, that somehow this imagery is designed to stimulate and titillate. They’ve even argued that in cults of Asherah, cultic prostitution and ritual sex were the order of the day, but I really don’t think there’s much evidence for that at all. This isn’t about Asherah being a sexy goddess, this is about Asherah being a life-giving goddess.

What’s so striking though is this association of a tree or a branch motif, above her pubic triangle. This motif is often known as the Tree of Life. 

The Tree of Life was frequently used to represent the Goddess. It symbolized her powers of regeneration, fertility and protection. 

In some text, she’s called the Divine Creatrix and in others, she is the Lady of the Sea. But her most important role seems to have been to act as an intermediary between the other gods and her husband El, demonstrating her strong, powerful position.

So is there any evidence to suggest that Asherah was also worshiped in Israelite religion? Well, not if you take the Bible at face value. But all across Israel in almost every excavation of ancient domestic buildings, archeologists are unearthing female figurines.

They appear consistently at ancient Israelite sites, dating between the 9th and 6th centuries B.C., the period in which much of the Hebrew Bible, or Old Testament is set.

I’ve come to Ramat Rachel near Jerusalem, the site of a 7th century B.C. palace to assess the evidence.

Prof. Judith Hadley: “Many of the figurines like this one have molded heads. This would seem to indicate that these are in wide production.”

Judith Hadley is a Professor of Biblical Studies. She thinks it’s possible that the figurines could represent the Goddess Asherah, but opinions are divided.

Prof. Hadley: “We have no record of exactly what they are. As you can see with this one, they have very exaggerated breasts and the arms are coming down, holding the breasts. People say that they are used for magic, and it’s true that with the exaggerated breasts on most of them, it maybe for some type of lactation, because of course lactation was very important in the ancient world and if you couldn’t nurse your child, then the child was gone.”

Francesca: “So to you these figurines represent a Goddess?”

Prof Hadley: “I think they do. I think that’s the most logical explanation. Because actually, it’s the Goddess who was the one who you would pray to for help with nursing your child and many scholars say that it’s a generic Mother Goddess or a mother of fertility. Now, in this period, the goddess who was most worshiped that we know is the Goddess Asherah. So I think it is very possible these are representations of the Goddess Asherah.”

At the very least, what these figurines do tell us is that there was a strong feminine element in the religious practices of ancient Israel, and that’s a revelation that’s completely counter to the male-centered monotheistic message in the Bible. 

But it’s difficult to conclude from these figurines alone that Asherah was worshiped by ancient Israelites. They lack many of Asherah’s signature features, her pubic triangle and the Tree of Life.

However in 1968, a relic was discovered that appeared to link the Goddess Asherah with this part of the ancient world. It was found in the North at a site called Taanach. It dates to about the 10th century B.C. and is now displayed in the Israel Museum. 

This artefact is a cult stand, a sort of pedestal used to make offerings to the gods perhaps by placing a bowl on the top. It’s a real constellation of religious imagery but what’s particularly significant is this female figure at the bottom, a naked women standing full front. with very emphasized breasts and pubic triangle. She has a very distinctive hairstyle and she’s flanked by two lions. And here, two tiers up, a parallel scene but this time the lions flank not a woman but what appears to be a sacred tree being nibbled by two goats. The female image is widely taken to be a representative of a goddess. This very distinctive hairstyle is often associated with the Goddess Asherah, and so too are the lions whose ears she is holding on to. It suggests therefore that the sacred tree image just two tiers up is an interchangeable symbol with the Goddess, that somehow both the tree and the naked woman represent the same Goddess Asherah.

So the Goddess Asherah, whom the Canaanites revered, was clearly known in this region. But was she actually worshiped by the ancient Israelites? Well this time, the clues in the Biblical texts are much more revealing. They say that she was once worshiped in the Jerusalem Temple itself. 

The Bible is actually giving us some very significant information. In one text we’re told tjat a King of Jerusalem set a carved image of Asherah in the temple, and in another we are told that women were weaving for Asherah in the Temple. Asherah worship was clearly going on at the very highest levels of society, at the very heart of Israelite religion, in the Temple of Jerusalem, the very place where the God of Israel resided. 

The Bible itself reveals that the God of Abraham, his sons, was not unique, but he was the deity El, a Canaanite God. And those Israelites claiming descent from Abraham worshiped a Divine Council or Assembly of Gods, and included in this pantheon was a Goddess, Asherah. Despite the Biblical insistence that the religion of the ancient Israelites was monotheistic, the reality is that it was polytheistic. But goddess worship is not in itself the biggest secret of the Bible. In the Canaanite system, Asherah was the wife of the Chief God El. Did she also hold such an exalted position for the ancient Israelites? Could she been Yahweh’s other half, the Wife of God? 

This is Mount Nebo in modern day Jordan. It overlooks the river Jordan and on a clear day, you can just about see Jerusalem. According to the Bible, this is where Moses and the Israelites first see the land promised to them by God.

One of the oldest clues to Asherah worship in the Bible is found in a poem recited by Moses to the Israelite tribes just before he dies. It hints at the real relationship between the Israelite God and Asherah.

In this poem, he talks about Yahweh coming down from Sinai, with what seems to be a divine being on his right hand side. Now, we are not really sure what this divine being is. The problem is in the Hebrew text, and one of the key issues here is this word, esh dat. Now it is usually translated as something like “his host”, most English translations will say something similar. But actually that does not make much sense at all. Now, recently scholars have suggested that actually this could be a reference to the Goddess Asherah. As you can see, this is the word ‘Asherah’, here is esh dat. Now, these two words are very similar and these letters are often confused. So it is quite possible that originally, this text contained a reference to the Goddess herself.

So if this is a reference to the Goddess Asherah, it is pretty incredible because it is saying that she had a close intimate relationship with God.

Look where she is, at his right hand side. If Asherah was God’s wife, it would seriously damage the foundations of monotheism. 

Some people would argue that the language is just too ambiguous to say for sure. A few would flatly reject the possibility.

Francesca: “One of the gods that appears in the Hebrew Bible is Asherah, a goddess, and a lot of scholars think that she was actually the consort of the God of Israel. What do you make of that?”

Rabbi: “That is sort of a notion that almost all ancient gods had a female consort. But the traditional Jewish understanding is absolutely not. God, being above any physical needs, would not even need a consort and certainly shares the world with no other powers. So, the need for anything else would be antithetical, theologically, to the whole Jewish world view.”

There’s no explicit statement in the Biblical texts coupling Yahweh and Asherah, God and his wife. But evidence has been found which does show them together.

The Sinai Desert, the wilderness where the Bible says Moses received the 10 Commandments from God. It was here just over 30 years ago that an amazing discovery was made. For the first time, we had evidence outside the Bible for the wife of God. It is an inscription written on a piece of pottery.

In 1975, an Israeli archeological team began excavating an ancient travelers’ resting place. It dates to the 8th century B.C., a period in which Israelite culture was flourishing. Just days into the dig they struck gold.

A room filled with shards of pottery and nearly all were covered in ancient scripts.

Unfortunately, I am not able to get access to the actual site. A terrorist group has recently fired on a nearby Israeli tourist resort and the Egyptian army have declared the site too dangerous for me to visit. So I have arranged to meet Ze’ev Meshel, the leader of the dig, in a safer location nearby.

Dr Ze’ev Meshel: “We built a camp down below…”

He remembers the growing excitement on site, as more and more inscriptions were uncovered, fragments of correspondence calling out the diggers from the distant past.

Dr Meshel: “Really people became crazy. It’s the only excavation I did, in weeks, I see guys getting addicted to the excavation. Everyone wanted so hard to find by his own hands, a piece of inscription, a stone bowl with the…”

And among these pieces, written clearly in Hebrew on a fragment of a large pot, was the name ‘Asherah’. But it was how her name appears which startled everyone.

For here, Asherah’s name was found coupled with the word ‘Yahweh’. The name of God.

But before the inscription could be displayed to the world, it fell victim to the politics of the region. In 1979, during the Camp David peace talks, Israel agreed to give the Sinai and all the discoveries back to Egypt. But both countries have since denied ownership of the artefacts, and the inscription, which could transform our idea of God, is currently missing.

Francesca: “When was the last time you saw the inscription?”

Dr Meshel: “We returned all the finds I think about 20 years ago or maybe 15 years ago. And this was the last time.”

Francesca: “Has the original inscription ever been exhibited?” 

Dr Meshel: “I don’t know. I don’t know.” 

It’s distressing to think that perhaps the most important artefact in the history of God has been lost but the recent Egyptian revolution has brought a glimmer of hope.

Fresh reports say the missing artefacts from Sinai have been found, and it is very possible that the inscription may soon be available for the world to see. But until then, all is not lost. Before it disappeared, the inscription was documented and photographed. 

This is a replica of the piece of pottery that’s got everybody so excited. There are three figures plus an inscription running along the top. The inscription is the key part. It is a blessing and the blessing is from Yahweh and his Asherah. It shows for the first time that people in the 8th century B.C. were coupling Yahweh and Asherah, the God of Israel and his wife.

It tells us that the ancient Israelites believed that God had a wife. 

This isn’t just my opinion or even that of a minority. The majority of Biblical scholars throughout the world now accept it as compelling evidence that God once had a consort. But it is a view of God unacceptable to millions of believers today. 

Walter Moberly: “On a classic understanding, God, although the Biblical language is consistently ‘He’, God transcends gender. God is not male in the sense that humans are male. But therefore to give God a consort is very much to anthropomorphize, to make God to male in a way that Jews and Christians have wanted to say, “No, that is actually misunderstanding what God is like.”” 

The traditional view is that the Bible is a book about just one God.

From the time God revealed himself to Abraham through to the founding of Israel, the Israelites promised to worship one God and one God only. That’s generations and generations of a monotheistic ideal. An ideal that’s corrupted from time to time by idolatrous, rebellious Israelites but an ideal nonetheless.

And yet the evidence in the Bible and in archeology reveals that Abraham’s God was not unique. The Israelites were polytheists and God had a wife.

Dr Niehr: “If we take the Old Testament text at face value, we are indeed convinced that there are two different cultures in this land: the culture of the Canaanites who already inhabited this land when Israel came out of Egypt, and then entered Israel entered as a new population with only one God. But nowadays, we know from archeology, from mythology, from ritual text and so on, that Israel is the offspring of Canaanite culture.”

Francesca: “So, the Israelites are essentially a subset of the Canaanites.”

Dr Niehr: “Yes, indeed. And we know that especially, on the background of the text from Ugarit which shows how closely related Israel was to its ancient neighbors.”

Francesca: “And so, the Biblical distinction between Israelite religion and Canaanite religion is essentially a false one.”

Dr Niehr: “From a historical point of view, it is false of course.”

In my view, the Biblical basis for an archaic monotheism just doesn’t stand up, and that suggests to me that the Bible cannot be taken at face value. It is misrepresenting the past. It’s a fictitious account of Israel’s religion.

Today, Jews and Christians practice monotheism. The Bible is read as the story of just one deity, one God. So what happened? What made the people of ancient Israel abandon the worship of many gods and switched to the veneration of just one God. 

Something forced a seismic shift in the Israelite religion that led to a systematic purge of polytheism. Traces of this purge can be detected in polemical stories in the Bible itself, stories in which Yahweh takes on the other gods in a celestial war.

In a way, the Bible is a battleground for the gods. The aim is to assert Yahweh, the God of Israel, over all others and even to kill off the competition. It says so in Psalm 82: “Here Yahweh presides in the great Council of Gods and criticizes the other gods for being unjust.” He says to them, “You are all gods, children of the most high, but you will die like mere mortals.”

The Psalm tells how the other gods are defeated. Only the God of the Bible survives, standing unique and distinct. At the end of the Psalm, the God of Israel takes over the world. This shift in the history of Israelite religion can be traced to a traumatic turning point.

The Babylonian invasion of Jerusalem. In the 6th century B.C., the Israelites are disempowered, humiliated and defeated. They lose their land, their freedom, they lose the Jerusalem Temple and they are exiled to Babylon. In their darkest hour, their God it seems has forsaken them. This is when monotheism begins to displace polytheism.

Yahweh had been the Chief God in Jerusalem, but he has just been vanquished by rival Gods. It’s around this time, from the 6th century B.C. onwards, that the Bible as we know it begins to be written down.

Scribes try to make sense of the fall of Jerusalem. In reflecting on this catastrophe, later writers of the Bible conclude that this is a punishment from Yahweh for the people worshiping other gods. They resolve to appease Yahweh by annihilating all the other deities.

The idea is to make Yahweh more omnipotent and fearsome than ever. He inherits the powers of other gods. Abraham’s God El and the Divine Council get buried in the text.

Even God’s own wife is rendered impotent. Asherah, once symbolized by the sacred Tree of Life, is now insultingly portrayed in Biblical stories as nothing more than a dead piece of wood. Her powers of fertility are stripped and reassigned to Yahweh. Scribes in effect create a new myth of origins, a new religious history of their people. Old and new stories are spun so as to conceal their polytheistic past. 

Dr Niehr: “We have to see the theology behind it. They wanted to make a division between Israel on the one side, and the Canaanites and all other cultures on the other side. So it is an attempt of self-definition, of inventing something new. And with the same for example, in Greek culture, where difference is made between the barbarians on one side and the Greeks on the other side.” 

Francesca: “And in the Hebrew Bible, monotheism is one of those aspects of religion that is used to distinguish Israelite religion and Canaanite religion.”

Dr Niehr: “Between the 10th century and the beginning of the exile in 586, there was polytheism as normal religion also here in Israel. Only afterwards things began to change and very slowly they began to change. I would say it is only correct for the last centuries, maybe only from the period of the Maccabeans, that means the 2nd century B.C., so in the time of Jesus of Nazareth, it is true but for the time before it is not true.”

Judaism and Christianity are proud of their ancient monotheistic pedigree but in my opinion the secret buried in the Bible is that this history has been skillfully manufactured by the scribes who composed these ancient texts. The claims that Abraham and his disciples worshiped a unique and distinctive God just don’t stand up. 

The truth about the Bible is that for most of the time, its people were polytheists and their Chief God had a wife. That undermines the foundations of modern monotheism to its core, but it also sheds a great deal of light on how we understand faith today, for the worship of many gods isn’t just a thing of the past.

Scratch the surface of modern day monotheism and you will find vestiges of polytheism. Take the God Baal. He is assimilated and demonized by Christianity. He lives on today through his title, the Lord of the Flies, Beelzebub. Other deities don’t completely disappear. They become the angels of Judaism and Christianity. But perhaps the most painful loss would have been that of Asherah, the wife of God. 

As a result of monotheism, these religions have become very masculine, but traces of the feminine survive. Asherah’s symbols took on new forms. The sacred Tree of Life gradually evolved into the Menorah, a central feature of modern day Judaism. But perhaps the most conspicuous homage is in Christianity itself. People the world over still pray to the ultimate fertile heavenly female: Mary, the mother of God.

Dr Niehr: “We have saints, we have the Virgin and so on. So we do not escape such a Divine Assembly, it is impossible. Pure monotheism is nearly impossible.” 

Francesca: “And the heavens are still very busy today then?”

Dr Niehr: “Yah, why not?”

The traces of polytheism and monotheism today show how hard it is to suppress it but I don’t think that’s such a bad thing. Monotheism, when it finally came, brought with it a terrible consequence: God is exclusively male and so to be male is to be like God. And this has colored attitudes toward women for centuries and centuries. In toppling the Goddess from heaven, monotheism disempowered women.

The evidence I have presented rocks the foundation of modern monotheism and for some, that may have a severe impact but it seems to me that the loss of God’s wife had an even greater impact on the history of humanity and that’s the painful truth of this story.

Next week, I go in search of another secret buried in the Bible, the real Garden of Eden. 

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36 Responses to Buried Secrets – Did God have A Wife?

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  1. Pastor Elena Khong Jean Ai on Jan 22, 2016 at 8:15 am

    I think it is amazing that people would be so unwilling to examine the evidence objectively because it doesn’t fit their paradigm of something. I like the way Dr Francesca speaks – cool, calm and measured, and totally confident in what she’s saying because there’s proof and logic behind it.

    On the other hand, you have the people she deals with, religious figures within the faiths. Opinionated, argumentative and defensive. You wonder why – if they are so assured that theirs is the truth, is there any need to defend the truth when it will stand up to whatever accusations that may be directed its way?

    That shows you the power of faith. Despite being confronted with the truth, people who have such strong faith can still reject the truth lest it shake their view of things. It also shows you the duty of care and responsibility that people in positions of power within a religion have to play. When dealing with people’s faiths, we have to be very careful not to introduce the wrong thoughts and views in their minds lest it affect their spirituality negatively.

  2. Bryan on Jan 29, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    I always think religion is a very sensitive issue, religion could bring people harmony at the same time it could also destroy a family, and hence to follow an authentic religion which based on a pure lineage is very important. That’s why we shouldn’t choose a belief or religion just because it show us miracle, good fortune or give us “power”, we should know the core meaning about before we take refuge, baptize or follow the path of this very religion. Due to the lineage is extremely important and it could affect us deeply hence every single of us should find out, observe, examine again and again before we follow what the pastor, sifu, master, Rinpoche, teacher and tell us what to do.
    In the past a lot of religion/political leaders used religion to control the people by saying he/she (the leader) have a vision of this Buddha or that God, and if people not follow what this Buddha or GOD said, they will sure be boil in the hell, but think again, is it really the God talking the guru ?? or the guru (human) using the name of Divine to get what they want.
    A lot of time the spiritual/political leaders in the past will said: “It’s because of the words “Devine”, we shouldn’t have any question or doubts or it will seem we are challenging the divine.” But if the divine can’t answer one’s question how can the person gain the 100% faith or trust in the Divine?? If one couldn’t have the 100% strong faith towards this Divine when he/she is alive, does it make sense at the moment of death he/she will have faith the Divine will bring to heaven, Nirwana, pure land and etc?
    In this documentary status clearly that’s a lot of history and belief of ancient religion been changed again and again for the benefit of people. Based on the ancient people have high respect of religion figure, whatever the authority said equal to the words from above, they better follow of they will get punished by the divine. Let’s think about it, will the benevolent God so cruel just because we, the normal people don’t understand his words? Will the compassionate divine so evil just punished the people because they are so not educated and really understand his holy words?? Will the almighty One act so selfish and only protect those who believe in him ? Why the holy One want to created disharmony or hatred between belief? We are all supposed to be his children. Based on this documentary, it show facts that because of greed, power, position, control of human, human actually recreated THE GOD to fit what God supposed to be, to speak what human want to speak, to do what human want to do. They new god that “created” by human will punished/kill/burn/stone people who doesn’t follow the religion leader, who have doubts in the authority, and this continue until now.
    The reason I like Buddhism it’s not because of after I take refuge in the 3 jewels I will be safe, or I will guarantee going to the Nirvana and be one with the Buddha that need not to go thru any kind of suffering.
    Buddhism teach us the universal system, where every single human have the power to control/ to be what we want to be in the future, we decided the path that we want. Buddha’s teaching is just a guideline for us along the way to enlightenment. Buddha himself need to gain his attainment, power, clairvoyant, free from suffering by himself, what makes you think that we can just sit down here without doing anything and we will get endless happiness? We will need to work our butt off just to get a big house or a comfy house, does it make sense that all we need to do is just believe in this DIVINE and we will get endless happiness? It’s doesn’t sound convincing to me.
    My point is since we have the free and powerful mind by it own, we should understand more about the true meaning of religion, it’s for us or for the benefit of all beings. Do not just have blind faith towards something that couldn’t even give us an answer, take refuge in the real teaching but not the religion leader.
    Bryan

  3. jennifer on Jan 27, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    One must watch these 3 videos, especially Did God have a wife?

    Dr Francesca brings to the viewer the truth what about the Bible had being concealing all these thousands of years. She did an amazing amount of research and had most courageously presented these facts based on archeological findings , interviews and unbiased research into the Bible.

    As the truth unfolds, there seemed to be a whole saga where words like deceit, corruption, bribery, revenge, sacrifice, punishment annihilation, jealousy comes to mind.

    In the hands of the scribes ( a handful of men) , the actual history of the Bible – the Truth , had been altered and manipulated to the convenience of man. It makes me wonder are the men of that time so insecure that the truth must be concealed or are they just plain arrogant ?

    Why hide the fact that God did indeed have a wife, that God sits on his throne , surrounded by the Divine Council.

    Even in the New Testament of the Bible, one must read between the lines and discern for himself what is the Truth.
    Jesus had 12 apostles (13 if one includes Mary Magdalene), then why was only 4 Gospels selected into the New Testament. Are the remaining 8 apostles not good enough or did they include facts that might be controvesial to what the church wants the flock to believe ? Example: is Mary Magdalene actually Jesus’s wife, and not the woman ‘ from whom seven demons had gone out’ and a prostitute as claimed in the Bible? There are many theories upon theories that Jesus was actually married and had a child. Then there was the historical finds of ‘The Dead Sea Scrolls’, whereby Jesus said that the Kingdom of God is in men’s heart and not in buildings made of stones.
    With a stroke of the pen, the scribes had rewritten the Bible yet again.

    Phrases like ‘Gospel Truth’ and ‘Etched in stone’ now seems most unappropriate in the English language.

  4. Lanse on Jan 25, 2013 at 3:49 am

    “The Bibles Buried Secrets Did God Have a Wife” is such an eye opening documentary. I never thought that the most popular monotheistic religion in this world was once polytheistic. I feel heavy after watching this video. If whatever found by Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou is true, I guess many will start to get confused about their own faith.

    From this video, many evidences show that the content of the Holy Bible has been changed over the centuries only to suit the need of a certain group of people. If human is the key controlling factor behind the Holy Bible, Christians today must be living in dilemma. Whom shall they believe in? Do they still believe in God? If yes, who is the God that they are supposed to rely on? Is He God, Yahweh, or the father of all God, El? How about Goddess Asherah who used to be so close to Yahweh?

    However, regardless of the history or the archeological findings, it is undeniable that many Christians who study the bible their whole lives are actually very kind people. What they value the most is the moral teachings in the bible but not the history behind it. I used to think that it is good enough as long as they are practicing the true loving kindness. However, when I think deeper, it worries me.

    Why do I say that? I believe that the mindset of most people during 8th century B.C. were quite similar to the people now. Only minority are keen in gaining political power. Majority of them just wanted to live a normal, happy life which is free of disaster. Yet, what happened after that? The truth is the history has been changed. The holy scripture has been changed. Goddess Asherah has been totally removed from the bible as well as their lives. What is the impact of her being removed? Didn’t it create huge impact on how women are treated all these while? For the past 21 centuries, how many women were treated unjustly eg being raped, put down, bullied just because God is He?

    We may be so holy and innocent to say that the history is not important, what important is the moral value. However, if we do not learn and be critical about what really happened in the past, are we not indirectly saying that we agree to what they did and the consequences of their action? History is always a lesson to learn, whatever happened in the past may happen again in the future as human’s nature is the same. If we still think that the history is not important and we do not want to learn and progress from here, one day, we will totally lost our freedom to even practice the correct moral attitude which we value so much.

  5. Philip Yong on Jan 25, 2013 at 1:18 am

    This documentary is a must watch! Unlike the others, this documentary presented by Dr Francesca is based on research and facts. She presented it very well and more often than not, there is no way we can dispute her findings.

    What stuck out for me in this documentary is how RELIGIONS are being used as a tool by human beings to satisfy their own desire and attachments. Something so sacred yet we human beings are able to change the course of history just with a pen. Does this not mean whatever we are practicing today may not be the truth? Are we really praying to God or the ‘God’ made up by men?

    Another point is that because of the manipulation of the bible, the female race for thousands of years were discriminated. The facts presented by Dr Francesca very clearly shows that there was a female goddess in the name of Asherah. I would say this really unfair to all the ladies today.

    Perhaps it is our karma that all these happened. But that can change..we just have to be less self centered and think for others more than for ourselves. IF this were the case thousands of years back, perhaps the discrimination would not have happened and our religions today would not be so corrupted!

  6. Lam on Jan 25, 2013 at 1:17 am

    Such a great documentary video with true facts and findings on two controversial topics; one being on monotheistic and polytheistic faith in religion and the other on whether did God have a wife.
    The research done by Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou, the biblical scholar is amazing. Her research covered from the ancient world till the present era. Her discoveries were that the ancestors of Judaism and Christianity believed in many gods and even that the God had a wife, Asherah. This conclusion of her research was supported by the enormous amount of evidence she discovered through her archeological finds and analysis on the text in the Hebrew bible and its English translation.
    As a Buddhist, I believe that there are many gods. It is disappointed and sad to know that the scribes who composed the Bible and others who, out of their own gain and greed had distorted the fact and conceal the truth. Even some of the present rabbi and Christian pastors still deny and argue over the issue that the ancestors of Judaism and Christianity were polytheism, and not monotheism.
    Watch this informative documentary video. You will enjoy it and at the same time realize the truth!

  7. Pastor Yek Yee on Jan 24, 2013 at 11:12 pm

    Did God have wife? When I just read this title, it is really triangle my curiosity. I not a Christian bt I do curious what happen in other religion.

    Francesca Stavrakopoulou, a Biblical scholar. Her passionate into her research make something happened. First, after watched this video I have a new perspective about polytheism and monotheism. I had born in polytheism culture. Peoples around me, they have more than one god normally. I too have monotheism friends. But majority my friends are polytheism. And 60% of my friends are freethinking and they don’t care about future life or they even lazy to find out their previous life and who they are. This is the trend for modern society nowadays. It is quite sad and sometimes you feel hopeless.

    Our education system did not teach us how to make our life more meaningful but the education just feed us with all kind materialistic desires and attachment. Our parents teach us must scored A in school, after graduated must get big house, get a man or woman to marry (they did not give the right for homosexual group), fight higher status in society, holding more power and so on. They labelled this kind of achievement as successful.

    The scary part I watched this video was all I mentioned above, more and less influenced from our religion. The a few group of peoples used religion control people to get what they want. Francesca found out more and more evident to prove that the Bible teach us is wrong…??!! Can you believe it? This is a huge lie!!!!!!

    She also found out religion become a tool in politic. The King used religion as a tool to hold on his power, to conquer other lands, countries and build up empire.

    Another thing shocked me was the scribes changed some part of content, the wife of the God disappeared just because to stronger the masculine power. The name of Asherah had been amended 40 times and then disappeared in Bible without any reason.

    Why? The few reasons I can think off: a) to build up man power and status in whole society, b) to press down woman as their asset or slave, c) lack of confident or insecure and so on. Because of the selfish group, woman has been pressed down, bullied, slaved for so many centuries. So scary!!!

    To me, Bible can be very holy! Who make Bible become a controversy holy book in among of us???It is us!!! The scribe, who wrote the Bible, the conqueror who want more power, land and money…all the faults created by human. Nothing wrong about the Bible, all faults were created by human!!!
    I do not interested that God have wife or not, but I feel very frustration why man can use religion poisoned peoples mind from so many centuries just because of save their face, can lost the power? That is so stupid!!!

    Although the faults already made so long ago, the truth still will be appear. The research finding of the Biblical scholar, Francesca Stavrakopoulou proven that how ugly who are as a human! I make myself contemplate on this topic this few days, my conclusion is the truth is truth, no matter how much you want to cover it, that will be explore one day…..!!! Francesca’s research finding is an excellent example.

  8. sarahyap on Jan 24, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Thank you for the sharing Rinpoche. This documentary certainly tells us something about mankind… when spiritual values are not well ingrained, even holy texts can be misinterpreted to suit their benefit.

    Professor Francesca certainly is a very well educated person. I like how she studied the bible without any form of biasness but as pure literature. On top of that, I like how she search of evidence to support her claims. This is not some low-class research where people write it base on hypothesis… there is solid evidence which means it is no longer hypothetical that Christianity started out as polytheistic and God had a wife; but it is the truth.

    With all the proof that shows how polytheistic society used to be the norm in their earlier culture and how Abraham and up to his grandsons believed in the old Gods that was named El, it certainly is illogical to refute the fact that other Gods exists.

    Putting aside all the hard proof, what made me most disappointing about the lies of the scribes in the ancient times was how they eliminated God’s equal/wife, Asherah. Why? Because it is common knowledge that by the deletion of Her presence, it placed men in a more ‘superior’ position within society, which caused so much suffering for the women… I suppose the scribes back then didn’t know how altering the actual history would cause such a huge consequences to billions of people around the world…

    Personally, I believe that Jesus taught very good teachings but it was men that corrupted Jesus’ actual teachings for their own benefit. Take for example the debate video… We all know truth cannot be disputed, but look at how these Bishops are being nasty and angry that they cannot proof their point. I don’t blame them, but it certainly proof that there really is nothing they can do to ‘challenge’ the opposing point.

  9. Paris on Jan 24, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    This has been a fascinating documentary to watch (the others in the series are fantastic too). I think though, from the onset, it must be made clear that we’re not discussing this as a means of putting down any one’s religion, but to examine how the distortions of the religion BY MAN have become problematic and used as a tool to control people the world over.

    What surprised me most (in both the BBC documentary and the TBQ interview) was to see the aggressive (passive or overt) in the people speaking about their religion. (this is to be differentiated from passion, which doesn’t come across with quite so much aggression). In the first, it was disappointing to see how the Rabbi assumes this moralistic high ground and judgement, to have made a stark comparison between how cultures “were” when they were polytheistic, and how cultures are now that they accept monotheism (“You just look at the morality of the ancient world which is polytheistic and you will see the radical contrast between the Jewish idea on one hand, and what came out of the pagan world on the other.”)

    If we wish to look at something quite so simplistically, then we also have to examine the “radical” contrast between modern wars and terrorism being caused by the monotheistic religions and the lack of wars being caused by the polytheistic religions in the world – a simple question, when was the last time we heard of a global-scale (or any scale!) war led by Hindus, or Buddhists or Jainists?

    One of the defining characteristics of many Christians I have met is their total fear and apprehension of any kind of idol worship, or even the notion of polytheism. There is such a marked differentiation between themselves, worshipping only one god, and others, who worship many. This is something that’s alluded to throughout the BBC documentary too. What is there so much to be afraid of, really? And the greatest irony? That the monotheists aren’t really too different from the rest of us “pagans” – for while they make such a clear distinction between “us” and “them”, the heart of their religion arises precisely from a polytheistic foundation! The evidence is astounding and extremely clear.

    And you know what? So what if that really is the truth? If we were really confidence in our belief system and so sure of God (his compassion, his all-knowing wisdom, his grace and forgiveness), then this shouldn’t shake us up so much. We should just adapt, consider that yes, God is still there, but also assisted by other beings. Isn’t that better, in fact? That instead of just having one almighty, powerful god to look after you, you have now discovered a whole HOST more of them! There’s already the belief in Mother Mary, the angels and saints (which Francesca points out, very cleverly!, towards the end of the documentary) – so what’s another few more powerful beings? Why does the acceptance of polytheism have to be such a bad thing? Couldn’t it also be something good? And why so much fear? If there really is so much fear in a such an angersome, jealous god, then why are we even in a religion that is based on so much fear? And is that really what we want?

    I think the questioning and examination of what we’ve believed to be traditionally true is always useful and always important and necessary. This is why Buddhists are STILL “questioning”, and why debate is still so strongly encouraged across the monasteries and all Buddhist learning institutions – and it’s okay if you disagree in the beginning. Talk it out until it does make sense to you. And the beautiful thing is that even if it doesn’t ever make sense to you, it’s still okay. The Buddhist who’s debating with you won’t proclaim that you’re going to hell!

  10. abby f on Jan 24, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    This documentary is not to put down any religions, and it brings out one very important point to me, that Bible or any religious texts are not necessarily can be used as a foundation to know/understand the history. After all, some religions are distorted by those who wants power, or money or whatsoever. Bible or religious texts are one of the materials that give us directions to go nearer to the truth.

    Like what this documentary presented to us, from a historical point of view, the God that Abraham called, is actually the God El. God El has a Divine Council that has different goddess, and this is stated in the old testament. From this we know that Israelites are actually polytheistic, just like the Canaanites.

    I am shocked that to look good, people would distort the truth, like what the they did to justify their lose to Babylon. They said the lose is because God angry at them for having belief in more than one god, just to cover their mess up. Still they want to ‘look good’ even they lose to Babylonian who are polytheistic, so they take 600 years to establish a new belief system and hide the truth behind. They give up the female god Asherah and god Baal. They change their belief and hide the truth, just to look good.

    They cover up and justify so much to look superior than the other religion as other religions are polytheism. But history and all the research tell us the totally different thing. One of the oldest clues to Asherah worship in the Bible is found in a poem recited by Moses to the Israelite tribes just before he dies. It hints at the real relationship between the Israelite God and Asherah.

    They hide the very two facts that in the past Israelites are polytheistic and God actually had a wife and the wife God Asherah was highly respected by the people. Because they wipe out these two facts from their text, therefore nowadays they put down people with polytheism belief and they put down the females as slave/ someone who are inferior to the men. This is convenient to rule people, to control and manipulate people. And they even turned God Baal into demon and God Asherah into an object. The goddess they worshiped in the past turned into demon, then it shows that they were wrong in the past and everything comes from the past. So all the things in past cannot be trusted, then what shall we believe after all?

    Religion is not just believe and accept. We need to also evaluate and think. Religion is not just about believing in God, but is to change/transform our mind to become a better person. To be superior than the others is not the priority of the religion. So why hold on to it and always attack people with what you believe? It doesn’t make sense.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this to all of us and talk/explain to us that night. It really goes in my mind. 🙂

  11. Joy on Jan 24, 2013 at 4:38 am

    Watching this type of documentary has given me so much more answers then any Bible class could, why because it really dig deep, and answers a lot of the questions we were told not to ask in SUnday school.

    What amazes me is that Christians today go around condemning other faiths and say negative things of other faiths, they we are all basically “pagan” worshipers and then you watch this and you discover, hey they too were pagan worshipers in reality! The facts that Dr. Francesca reveals are mind blowing and the whole entire reasons for doing God’s work, for believing in this ONE GOD theory was all for a patch of “land”, oh dear! What kind of God is this? And God had a name… El, and he had a consort!!! And there was not only 1 God, there were many Gods like Baal who controls the eather, rides on clouds and holds a lighting. Wow! this is news that would certainly shake the foundation of any Christian church, bishop and believers of today for sure. It is amazing that for centuries all this truth has been changed by man who basically was very creative and rewrote history and the future literally. Hence now I know why, up until today no Christians would like to answer complex questions of their lineage and also about God’s motivation. Because from what it is said in old testament, God is a pretty easily angered, jealous being who only wants everyone to worship only HIM alone! He punishes people, destroys the earth/cities, creates disharmony, offers you land if you did his bidding and basically makes mistakes… look at adam and eve and why he put the tree there in the first place? Everything is so illogical and every question ask, there is a justification for it. Now I know why.

    This documentary reveal a whole lot of answers about the monotheistic thinking of the one “GOD”, if UNTRUE which to many Jews, Christians and Islam, is not a possibility because even to think in such a way could mean they will be damned to hell! It is so aggressively and arrogantly defended and quick to cover just like the Jewish Rabbi in the video being interviewed by Dr. Francesca and how he talks about the one and only one God in this whole universe is a concrete permanent fix that has no other possibilities. Even if facts were presented to them they would not accept because their mind is fixed to this concept… this is fine… but it is not fine when religion is being used to put down another religion or being used to put people down, cast and degrade them as 2nd class and not equals like how they have done so towards women for centuries – that is an astonishing fact – a fact that could possibly liberate women all around the world and change the course of the future which is happening as we speak. I guess the one thing that man made a huge mistake even though they conquered lands was to allow and adopt the democratic view and thought (thank goodness) which allows religious freedom, which allowed other possibilities, thinking and concepts… like Buddhism – which allows us to think deeper and further.

    I’m glad I am a Buddhist even more so after this documentary. From a Buddhist perspective, it is easier to see through all this information and that this angry jealous “God EL” is probably just a worldly God and hence the many mistakes he has done, the many loop holes in this monotheistic belief system. And no matter how it is being covered up, humans are still pron to a polytheistic view knowing or unknowingly as it clearly shows that, up till today, Christianity still worships more then just one God. Hence mother Mary, Jesus, the angels and for the Jews the tree of life is represented by the 7 candle holder.

    I guess truth is truth, not matter how hard you try to cover it up, one day someone’s going to discover it. I wonder what the karma would be like to those who have taken this twisted view and imposed it on others and to the suppressing of women for centuries? Definitely don’t think it would be a good one.

  12. Li Kim on Jan 24, 2013 at 2:21 am

    Firstly, we have to be clear that watching this video is not about putting down or nullifying a God nor a religion BUT attaining knowledge and seeing how mankind/scribes can “change” how things can and will be based on concealing truths and facts… sigh…Again, we face another truth that all religion is wonderful but the practitioners are the ones which make a difference both positively and negatively.

    After watching this video I do not doubt there is God but I am seeing that the One Almighty concept is not the original method of worship and that the single God, monotheistic method was from Abraham based on what “God” said. There is more evidence, if we dare to explore which shows that Judaism, which is the same source for Christianity and Islam, was polytheistic in origin.

    The other buried truth is that Asherah is the wife of God. God HAD a wife? This was most mind blowing. I was just thinking the fundamentals and foundation of Christianity would collapse with this fact. However, it has not. I am not sure how many people have watched this video. I guess it would be ruled as a farce and thus told not to believe the contents researched and presented by Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou.

    The information provided here is powerful and really makes us see another truth behind Christianity. Again, I stress that I am not attacking the religion nor God, personally the more Gods the better especially in today’s world where degeneration is so prevalent, the more Gods to help us the better! The point here is that what Christians have studied in the New Testament may not be everything which is true or shall I say it may be “twisted truths” rewritten to suit the people and those who want control, power and greed…

    Watch this video… examine the information…make your own deductions.

  13. Ethan Chu on Jan 24, 2013 at 1:18 am

    This blog post and facts and findings about this video really blew my mind away, this really contradicts the one god theory which will perhaps shocked the world to know.

    If a holy scripture is based on these findings and historical facts, then it will be a major disappointment as The God has demonstrated no difference than human kind in samsara; anger, greed, power, jealousy, violent, desire… And the text is actually refered to “divine beings”. So where is the morale in the story?

    Why would a God who is suppose to be almighty, the creator – to be jealous of another god, created human kind, communicate with the human kind and ordered them to “conquer” the land so to wipe out other divine beings? Years later, not only they are buried, unheard, unknown of and some even degraded to becoming a candle holder. Is that an act of a god? What was he promoting? A god doesn’t need to demonstrate killing to prove that killing exist. Imagine to teach a lesson to his disciples, how many times he need to demonstrate as such to get a message across? just don’t make sense to me.

    This really challenged the belief system of the monotheism society. But it is proven that there is a higher being, male or female which also proven that reincarnation exists. A continuation after life. To be a god is possible.

    In fact, historical facts were just proof of existence but what is more important in for a religion is to promote better quality in mankind like care, compassion, giving, generous, etc. This is regardless what religion you are in. Whatever happened in the “divine council” we can only read through scriptures and artifacts to know the truth about their existence. I just don’t understand why mankind would just twist things around to hide things and even had the guts to twist things within the divine realm.

    This no doubt created doubt in man kind and it will continue because it is not the truth. We spend more time debating than to practice really dharma in life just to prove a god existed. How ignorant and silly of us really.

  14. Jutika on Jan 24, 2013 at 12:00 am

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for inviting me watch this wonderful, mind blowing and full of facts documentary called Did God have a wife?

    Here is what stuck out for me.

    What that has been proven here that the Holy Bible had hidden 3 big secrets is very true the fact that there is much evidences and prove to prove it.

    It is just wonderful how they managed to disguise the word Asherah in Hebrew.

    But what was even more amazing was that Francesca managed to be able to decode it.

    This took me in to quite a surprise as I too did not know that people praying to God used to pray to God and many other Gods as well.

    To me those archaeological finds of statues of El’s wife proves that she used to be the mother of all Gods.

    It is true that Dr Meshel sadness is genuine because he was sad that the greatest and most important in the History of God had been lost and it saddened because that would prove to millions of people that God actually had a wife.

    I was very annoyed on how the Rabbi Ken Spiro and the Indian Bishop in the second in the second video reacted to the real facts and trying to argue very aggressively when they slip to the obvious facts that had proof attached to it as well.

    I find The African guy in the second video very cool and also very smart, true to the fact he was a very knowledgeable guy.

    Thank You Rinpoche for giving me a wonderful explanation on the video as well as making sure we understood by asking us questions.

    Have a good day!

    Love
    Jutika

  15. Lim Han Nee on Jan 23, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    In the first video, Biblical scholar, Dr Francesca sets out to show through her carefully extracted evidence from the Bible and through archaelogical findings that the ancestors of Judaism and Christianity believed in many gods and that God had a wife. Dr Fransesca impresses me with her methodical and systematic way of presenting her case at every turn.

    For the Jews,and Christians, and even Muslims,their faith and morality are founded on their belief in one God who is unique.

    However, the God of Judaism and the Christian God are strikingly different in character. The former is seen as a jealous God, an angry God and a scheming God. He ‘schemed’ to have Abraham and his descendants wage war against the Canaanites so as to topple a competitor God so that allegiance and offerings would be switched over to him.

    The God of the New Testament, the Christian God, is the opposite. He is the God of Love and Compassion.He is Jesus Christ who sacrifices himself on the Cross to redeem all mankind from the Original Sin of Adam and Eve.

    Dr Francesca shows very convincingly that the Bible is a collection of writing by scribes and there are few historical facts. Thus she regards the Bible as ancient literature rather than holy scripture.”Literature with an agenda which distorts the past”.

    However, she has collected convincing evidence from the Bible and from archaelogical findings that the God of the Israelites is not the one and only God, but head of a pantheon or council of Gods.The following are some of the biblical evidence:

    “I saw Yahweh(God) sitting on his throne with all the hosts of heaven standing beside him, to the left of him and to the right of him”.1 Kings 22:19
    “God has taken His place in the Divine Council. In the midst of the gods he holds judgement.”- Psalm 82:1

    Be it as Yahweh or as El,figurines of him and other gods like Baal have been excavated from the ancient Canaanite city of Ugarit. Museums from Syria to France also display figures of these gods.

    However, the greatest surprise and the greatest secret uncovered was that God had a wife.Her name was Asherah. The word Asherah appears 40 times in the Bible. Asherah is also to be found in the Louvre Museum in Paris in the ancient tablets on display there. She is characterized by two symbols – the Tree of Life and the very prominent pubic triangle which emphasizes her life-giving quality.

    Biblical research also shows that the God of Israel is also the God of the Canaanites.

    With the fall of Jerusalem to Babylon in 600 BC, Judaism to save face, restored their belief in monotheism. The god of Judaism became once more the all-powerful omnipotent God. Asherah disappeared only to be replaced by the Tree of Life. Other gods became angels or demons, like Baal who became Beelzebub.

    The greatest blow that monotheism dealt to women was that it disempowered women. As long as monotheism continues to exist, so will women continue to suffer behind their veils, as in the Middle East.

    Monotheism creates divide and duality. “I am the Lord thy God. I am the only true God. All other gods are false”. As we can see in the group interview in the second video – Is the Bible Relevant Today –
    the one-god believers were generally acting with the arrogance and intolerance of the chest-thumping kind , whilst the scholarly and knowledgeable atheists behaved with quiet dignity and spoke with facts and reason behind them.

    Last but not least, I agree with Dr Les Henry that the Bible is a “document which contains some truths but not the absolute truth because everything discussed in it has been meditated by human beings.”

  16. Pastor Susan on Jan 23, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    I don’t think there is a religion out there where everyone agrees and accepts because it is free of controversies. It could derive from our own laziness to research, lack of ability to understand or to muster up faith to believe and finally, the fear to be labelled, boxed in and to live a life of discipline according to the religion. Some remain as free thinkers but really is there such a reality? Or do free thinkers abide by their own principles which serves as their own self made religion?

    Is religion bad? I don’t think so but what is important is knowing the ramifications and the basis of our belief systems.

    If we are talking about mainstream religion which has so much power and influence on entire civilizations then the basis of these religions is something everyone should be concerned with. We ought to concern ourselves with it whether we like it or not as it becomes the fiber to shape ourselves, our families and our society.

    Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou’s work is highly admirable and respected. I can only imagine how much criticism she receives daily yet, her stance is unshakeable due to the confidence she has from her knowledge which is based on solid, unbiased research.

    There are many controversies in Judeo-Christian religion. Dr Stavrakopoulou being a biblical scholar, tackles one of them as she discovered that the root of Judaism which is founded on monotheism contradicts with the historical facts.

    The historical facts showing the formation of the monotheistic religion and the signs which it never happened is a big deal! It is the foundation of the belief system which the laws and principles are built upon, which has given privileges and power to certain groups of people, shaped society’s inequalities based on color, based on gender, based on anything that does not comply to the laws of the One True God which has been the cause to segregate more than unite humanity and to bring about full potential everyone.

    God having a female counterpart further crumbles the already weak foundation of a religion which is male dominant. I do not see Dr Stavrakopoulou as being a feminist in anyway as some might label her perhaps to distract from the real issue on hand. It is common that when someone speaks for the rights of the female gender, they are quick to be labeled in a negative way. Doesn’t this show how strong the male gender dominates today’s society then? Is this a reflection of and influence from the ONE TRUE MALE GOD HEAD culture? If i understand correctly, Dr Stavrakopoulou’s message is to show the great dangers posted by the monotheistic religion and the extensive effort put towards keeping these facts hidden and in secrecy will further perpetuate harm which is derived from a lie, a literature written from a distorted past.

    Am i against Christianity? Absolutely not. My message to christians is be the best christians you can and while we are still living on earth, let’s live harmoniously and strive for equalities as we share the same resources from mother earth.

    Don’t you want to know what really happened? Watch the video then! 🙂

  17. Sharon Saw on Jan 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm

    Thank you for sharing the documentary by Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou which was very well presented, logical and objective, backed up with solid archaeological research and scriptural references. It throws the basis of the monotheistic god of the Abrahamical traditions into question, which is not surprising because the bible is well known to have been compiled and recompiled by human beings who do have their agendas.

    For example, the changing of polytheism to monotheism by the scribes was triggered by the fact that the israelites wanted to ‘save face’ of their Gods after they were defeated by the Babylonians. Instead of saying their Gods were less powerful than their conquerors, they decided that it was their polytheistic practice which angered their god, El, and thus their defeat was because of El’s displeasure. Hence they began to change their practice over time to a monotheistic faith. What disturbed me was not so much what was changed but the fact that the bible, which is seen as the absolute authority of everything according to Christians, is not based on fact but what human beings wished to present.

    This was emphasised in the second video also “Is the Bible still relevant today” where Dr Lez Henry, author of “Whiteness made simple”, says that the bible was used by people to justify certain tenets but if you question other points in the bible, suddenly you would not be able to dispute them. For example, the bible was used to enslave the Africans and also to free them so the bible should be used as “a document that contains some truth but it is not the absolute truth because it is mediated from human beings”.

    Because the bible is given some suprahuman authority, Dr Henry says that people can pick a passage to justify and support any stance or negative activity. I strongly agree with this as we have seen people use the bible over time to condemn others for racial, cultural and behavioural issues. Many people today don’t realise that it was only in 1967 that interracial marriages (Loving v. Virginia) were allowed in the United States. Forbidding of interracial marriages came about purely because of laws made from the basis of biblical references. Today there is a huge debate over gay marriages again because of the supposed references from the bible.

    I was surprised that even the rather flustered Former Bishop of Rochester, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali says that Leviticus “certainly from the Christian point of view, none of that applies to any of us today. What we are talking about is the moral and not the cultic teaching of the bible.” It is a pity that the host of the show did not press him more about the laws in Leviticus which supposedly does not apply today, for one of the main laws in leviticus is the root of the condemnation of homosexuality today.

    In any case, I did enjoy the videos very much as they were provocative and gave much food for thought and I hope that people will watch this blog post and the videos and think carefully about where our moral stances arise from and how valid they are.

  18. Andrew Boon on Jan 23, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    Very revealing and extensive research by Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou. I especially like how she says in the very beginning of the 1st video “In this program, I will be looking at the Bible not as holy scripture but as ancient literature. Literature with a religious agenda, which distorts the past.”

    This clearly indicates she is not out to get any religious establishment nor to demean anyone but is purely looking at it from a factual standpoint based on solid evidence and meticulous research. I like it when the agenda is not to put down but educate!

    However that said, as a reader/listener, it is hard not to be livid with anger and a pronounced sadness… these feelings are not necessarily directed at anyone per se, as the ‘wrongs’ were done by people long gone and the ones that perpetuate the lie just do not know any better or are in a position to do anything for fear or mere selfishness.

    The point that evokes these feelings are the fact that through the systematic “elimination” of a female divine, the domino effect for more than half the human race, our female counterparts, has been detrimental in the views of society for thousands of years.

    So much angst and suffering could have been averted for all humankind in general. Imagine what negative karma it must befall these fact changing scribes!!!! Scary to say the least…

    Now where we go from here is in question… do we just ignore this glaring injustice and blatant distortion of the truth or do we try to right the wrong?

  19. David Lai on Jan 23, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Oh my! This is such a fantastic documentary and I do not know of another biblical scholar who would develop such a powerfully compelling revelation of the true origins of the Judeo-Christian world. I myself have come from a Catholic background and I fully appreciate Dr Francesca’s findings and it makes me wonder what I would have done if I found out about this information much earlier.

    Its incredible that the biblical scribes in ancient times had created such an enormous deception. No wonder when I attempted to read the bible when I was younger, I became more confused. I think I am not the only one as there are millions of Christains who are still struggling today and either they accepted it blindly like most Christians tend to do or they engage in a rather grueling task of assigning a loose meaning to the inconsistencies as some sophisticated Christians would do to justify their faith. Despite the very best intentions to hide the polytheistic nature of the bible and the Judeo-Christian past, there is an incredible amount of evidence as discovered by Dr Francesca archaeologically and scripturally.

    I like Dr Francesca’s approach and stance as I find her views unbiased and I think she was trying to present facts. It is an archaeological fact that the ancient Canaanites and the Jewish people are the same and they both share the same polytheistic past. The God of Israel also known as Yahweh is also known as El and he once had a consort (wife) and her name was Asherah. He also had a divine council of Gods including a powerful weather God called Baal. Its incredible how powerful the scribes must have been to be able to rewrite the faith of an entire civilization and alter the shape of history.

    Dr Francesca traces the catalyst for this seismic shift from polytheism to monotheism to the historic Babylonian invasion. The Canaanite priests including the scribes were worried because the fall of Jerusalem rendered their Gods impotent and they worried about their lost of status in the eyes of the ordinary people. So, the scribes and priests probably held council to discuss this grave situation. Meanwhile, the ordinary Canaanites were exposed to the new culture and the Gods that they brought with them. This made the scribes and religious men even more worried about their future position and so they quickly hatch a contingency plan by declaring that El, the heavenly father was angry and the invasion was his divine retribution for worshipping other lesser Gods. After that, there was a systematic purge of the other Gods, including the all-powerful consort of El, Asherah.

    This is unfortunate because this new religion had a socio-political implication on the future of its adherents. The worship of a single God made it a male-dominated society because to be “male is to be like God”. This disempowered women for generations in Judaism and its offspring faiths of Christianity and Islam. Hence, we see inequality of men and women that is still very much prevalent in society today. Perhaps, if the Canaanites preserved their Gods, the world would be a lot different today.

  20. Andrew Boon on Jan 21, 2013 at 5:52 am

    Its sad that historical facts can be contorted to subjugate and suppress the majority for the mere gain of a small minority! In a way, history shows us the glaring teaching of selfishness and greed of humankind but yet we choose to think we are better than anyone else. Strange how the mind works!

  21. Jean Ai on Jan 19, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    For the most part, I do find this well-researched. The only part that I found a bit suspicious was the archaelogical dig…how coincidental that just as they are filming, they stumble upon an artefact featuring Baal -_-

    Cynicism aside (after all this IS the BBC, ahem), what I liked about this video is that it shows the extent to which people will cover and manipulate things in their favour, to the point of changing and creating a faith for billions of people. And no matter how hard I try, I can never fully understand the Christian faith. I just find that the parts I have been exposed to lack the clarity and logic I appreciate and find in Buddhism.

    This video also made it clear what is necessary to spread Dharma – no matter what your faith or beliefs are, when you are well-spoken and highly intelligent, and speak to present a different perspective (instead of put others down), people will be more willing to listen. In the video “Is the Bible still relevant today?”, the atheists trounced the religious people which just goes to show you can be in Dharma, but Dharma isn’t in you – it was such a turn off to watch the Christians argue and get riled up, instead of practising tolerance in the moment it mattered.

    I appreciated the fact that right off the bat she viewed the Bible as a piece of literature, rather than a spiritual doctrine. Of course there will always be one group of people who cannot go beyond that, and insist that she is a heathen, that her research is sacriligous and she is going to Hell. But their defensiveness intrigues me – why are they so defensive, if they are secure in their faith? Who cares if God had a wife? Because to care would mean God is as human as the rest of us, and why would anyone want to worship someone who possesses the same desires as them?

    I’ll watch this video again and again (especially “Is the Bible still relevant today?”), to ask the same tough questions to myself and challenge my own faith, and figure out what will destabilise my practice so that I can fix it before it gets me.

  22. KYC on Jan 19, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    I’m not surprised that archaeological findings as well as textual research have revealed that ancient Israel was polytheistic. The description of God and the Divine Council reminds me of the visualization of Buddha Shakyamuni surrounded by the Buddhas and the Bodhisattvas like the full moon surrounded by stars. I have read of arhats who have visions of such a pantheon. The theory that God has a wife also reminds me of certain Hindu and Buddhist deities who are often portrayed with their consorts or shakti. Could there have been influence from Hinduism in ancient times? This is not impossible due to the existence of the Silk Road and the mixing of people from different cultures along this route.

    • Zla'od on Jan 20, 2013 at 8:08 am

      There has been some speculation to the effect that Yahweh / El began as a sort of warrior storm God who defeats a dragon and cuts him in two, creating the sky and ocean (this is mentioned briefly in the Psalms and in the Book of Job). This would make him similar to Zeus or Marduk, who do have Indic counterparts in the distant past before the Indo-European languages and mythologies split. (The name of Zeus / Jupiter, for instance, is a cognate with Dyaus Pitar from the Vedas.) But Yahweh / El is Semitic, so we should be looking to other Semitic peoples for his nearest relatives.

  23. Martin on Jan 18, 2013 at 1:14 am

    The unique characteristic of Judaism (which is the basis for Christianity and Islam) is the one God theory, and in these series of videos, we see a number of intriguing revelations that for me, changes everything I understood about those religions. Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou’s presentation clearly debunks that theory and what is worrying is the way the truth can be altered to suit political and religious agendas. To begin with, the character of the Christian God was already quite different as we transit from the Old Testament to the New Testament and now as we go into the history of the time, we see that not only is the character of god different to what we have been told but also that the dynamics of god-hood were misrepresented.

    The second video and was extremely interesting and it examined how relevant the Bible is today, but for me it also enquired into how accurate the Bible is as a historical text. There was no conclusion in the end but along the way, it became clear that the way the Bible was written is open to many different forms of interpretation. In fact, it is so open that the book can be used to justify any act, good or bad and yet there are those who literally believe in each and every single word in the Bible. I am not saying that these religions are wrong. Far from it and in fact the Torah, the Bible and Qur’an have formed the moral matrix of many successful ethical societies and communities.

    I guess there are 2 ways to approach religion: one from a completely devotional perspective which takes everything based on faith and the other, from a logical perspective where the religion is closely examined and can stand up to all forms of questioning even those questions beyond our immediate scope of logic. And it is there that we actually learn, i.e. when we expand our scope of knowledge based on information that can be explained logically. An example of the difference is one, to learn what a clock is, what it does and develop a certain faith that the clock gives us accurate time; and the second to actually know not only the mechanisms that move the hands on the clock but also to understand the concept of time itself. Buddhism to me is the second example and it is a vast lesson which requires make lifetimes to grasp and learn.

    • Zla'od on Jan 18, 2013 at 11:46 am

      Of course archeology can never disprove God! As for the evolution of the idea of God, Jews and Christians (or the more intellectual ones, anyway) have long understood that the idea of God has changed over thousands of years, and that the Bible reflects some of these earlier stages.

      • David Lai on Jan 18, 2013 at 7:05 pm

        Well, the deception in the bible is quite glaring and destabilizing. If the entire faith of a religion is based on just one thick book and we find inconsistencies and hidden agenda within its pages, then I really wonder why God allows this to be perpetuated. Wouldn’t he want the truth to be told? Why does he sanction this book which bears his name in it?

        • Zla'od on Jan 20, 2013 at 7:54 am

          Even to believers, the Bible is a dark and problematic book–not least because God is reported to have ordered massacres. Different religious groups disagree as to whether the biblical text was directly revealed by God, or inspired more obliquely. Many would recognize that the Bible comes filtered through the lens of human culture, perhaps developing a more sophisticated idea of God over time. But God does not confide in me, so I cannot speak for him!

  24. Zla'od on Jan 17, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Although I often criticize Tsem Rinpoche for his uncritical belief in many New Age type subjects, the above remarks represent mainstream scholarship and are, in my opinion, true. Unfortunately, few Christians are aware of these discussions (though more Jews are). They also resonate with the early history of Islam, in which the Ka’aba was filled with the votive images of some 360 gods and goddesses (representing the cosmos, the number of degrees in a circle). You may remember the episode of the “Satanic Verses,” in which Muhammad was apparently tricked by the devil into deifying several goddesses as the daughters of Allah.

    The same critical approach can be applied to the history of Buddhism. For example, no serious scholar thinks that the historical Buddha taught the Mahayana sutras, let alone the tantras (which came centuries later).

    • David Lai on Jan 18, 2013 at 12:43 am

      Well Zla’od, you don’t have a clear point in what you are saying. Are you trying to disprove all faiths and religions? There are other aspects of a faith that cannot be traced by archaeological findings especially when it comes to Tantric lineage.

      Tantrism swept throughout India and brought about the final flourishing of Buddhism in India. However, the flourishing was brought about mostly by the need to overcome the limitations imposed by monastic discipline. Many of the great Mahasiddhas arose from expelled scholars and pandits that to the casual observers, were cavorting with women and drinking alcohol.

      The truth was that they were in communion with their inner deity by overcoming spiritual limitations by partaking of a Tantric feast, which ritually involves alcohol and meat (they were taboo in ancient India). Divine women are said to come to partake of the feast and their sole reason are to aid Tantric and spiritual attainments. Many of these celebrated masters bore all the signs of spiritual accomplishments. Therefore, these practices must be legitimate and although the liturgy was not written or spoken by the Buddha directly but it carries the spirit of his intent and teachings. That’s all that matters.

      • Zla'od on Jan 18, 2013 at 11:34 am

        More clearly, then: the article is probably right about the origins of the God of the Abrahamic religions. The same historico-critical approach also poses challenges for Buddhism, especially Tibetan Buddhism. I guess it is human nature to be more critical of others.

        I wish that Buddhists would be more open to questioning traditional views–for example, on the origins of tantra, which is the subject of several recent academic works. This need not mean rejecting Buddhism altogether. After all, many Jews accept that the Bible is the work of human authors (who were not even necessarily monotheistic), yet continue to identify as Jews.

        • David Lai on Jan 18, 2013 at 6:50 pm

          Zla’od,
          Ok, thank you, You have made yourself clearer. Well, I think you can very well present your views on Tantra. For most Tantric lineages (if not all), there’s really no direct connection with the Buddha.

          They are mostly meditation instructions that came down from a visionary experience of a specific Tantric deity called Vajradhara or an equivalent Tantric deity. Vajradhara is not Buddha Shakyamuni but a mystical manifestation of Buddha Shakyamuni. There’s no way one can trace that archaeologically and scripturally because most of the body of Tantric liturgy was only developed towards the later development of Buddhism.

          However, even when it was not taught directly by the Buddha, they were still developed in reference to mystical and spiritual experiences with the Buddha. Out of these experiences came instructions that benefited many practitioners developed tremendous spiritual attainments. Hence, these makes the lineage of great spiritual masters, leading all the way to Vajradhara… real. So, you can give you own theories and probes but it does little to discount the results of Tantra and its enduring legacy in Tibetan Buddhism.

          • Jean Ai on Jan 19, 2013 at 11:50 pm

            Well said David! But I have a much simpler explanation for those who find yours a little tougher to digest. It’s an explanation that I myself believe – thousands of monks and 600 years of Gaden tradition are wrong, and I’m right? Trijang Rinpoche is wrong and I’m right?

            Hmmm…doesn’t sound logical at all to me!

          • Zla'od on Jan 20, 2013 at 7:45 am

            David, I think we are basically in agreement on this. Scholarship can have little to say about whether a reported divine revelation has really occurred (unless the existence of the recipient is in doubt, as it is with Moses), or whether certain spiritual practices are effective. Those are fundamentally matters of religious opinion.

            Jean (below), you surely realize that there are many other religious groups to choose from, and yet you have somehow settled on Ganden. Somewhere out there on the internet, someone else is using your argument to say that a billion Catholics and their 2000 years of tradition can’t be wrong!

          • Joy on Jan 24, 2013 at 12:22 am

            I like what you said David… “So, you can give you own theories and probes but it does little to discount the results of Tantra and its enduring legacy in Tibetan Buddhism.”

            I agree because I see the results and that is what matters most. I mean even if things can be proven to be the truth, traced back, written and signed n seal accurate… what’s the point of the religion if “man” does not practice it and gain results – attainments. And what is this attainments we are in awe about, that moves us, moves the very core of our being that inferential logic tells us it rings “truth”? Well take for instance Mother Teressa, now she applied what Jesus taught – compassion and see her results… how many people she benefits and look at her foundation now, still benefiting thousands in poverty. She would hug and kiss and love people who have leprosy… yet with all her success she remains humble. To me that is real Christianity.

            So for those who practice the tantra… we can check the results just by their actions. Hence even if you are the highest scholar, if you do not apply the teachings, no results will come anyone and no one will believe you anyway. Hence for me looking at the results of highly attained Lamas who practices, the evidence is clear already. So at the end of the day how much we practice, how humble we become, how beneficial we are to others, how compassionate we are, how kind we are is where and how the teachings live on.

        • Jean Ai on Jan 24, 2013 at 1:00 pm

          Yes David, which is why I prefer not to criticise religious thought or leaders because unless I’ve committed myself to studying the teachings, I have no basis for critique.

          I studied Psychology and Buddhism at Warwick, and on my first class my Professor told me that the failing of Western scholars and psychologists is that they have become overly objective, forgetting that they are also human because their findings always apply to everyone else, and not to them.

          So when I say committed, I don’t mean a scholarly kind of commitment but an actual commitment to practise and live the teachings…experiential, so to speak.

          • Paris on Jan 24, 2013 at 4:39 pm

            Great discussion going here! I do think it’s quite interesting to consider the role of scribes within the recording of scriptural texts. I remember a particularly funny section in Salman Rushdie’s Satanic Verses, where he gets into the head of one of the scribes who’s writing down the words of the prophets. The passage describes him getting a bit bored and restless, he’s sleepy and is trying to keep himself awake, what he’s writing bores him or he doesn’t quite get it, so he decides to make up a story himself. So he (re)writes a whole section for his entertainment. It’s wholly blasphemous to consider he’d do this of course, but the caricature is also funny and calls into question that very pertinent consideration of just how much these religious texts are subject to human error, human passions / boredoms and emotions.

            The thing is though, at the heart of the matter, there shouldn’t be anything wrong in questioning this in order to better understand what we’re learning. That’s not to say we question everything to a point of nihilism, where nothing is sacred or important anymore, but to question the relevance that the teachings may or may not have for us as we practice. I think this is why Buddhism works for many, because although there are written scriptures (and also ear-whispered, oral lineages), we are encouraged to question the logic of the teachings so that they become true and real for us.

            Personally, I have met Christians for whom the belief in one god has worked and they have become better people for it – more peaceful, more giving, less angry. There are also Christians like Mother Theresa who show us the beauty of their religion – whether there is one god or not doesn’t matter as much as what she does out of that belief. Isn’t that the bottom line – the kind of people we become? While it helps to understand the basis and history of how each religion developed, I think it’s more important to consider how the religion makes us better or worse people in the end.

            So if questioning the religions help us to get a stronger understanding to become that better person, then so be it. If questioning the religion makes us more angry, more frustrated, more doubtful, then it’s time to have a long hard look at why we’re in that religion in the first place!

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  • Lin Mun
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 10:10 PM
    Rejoice for Jie that he can now speaks. All appreciation to the kindness of Guru, Tsem Rinpoche for blessing him and all the children. Besides, I believe it is because Chef Au has been working as a vegetarian chef and retrained himself from meat that have accumulated the merits to help his son. A wonderful miracle story to share to all. Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Seng Piow for sharing this story.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/behind-the-scenes/miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-4.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:49 PM
    First time coming across this game, sound interesting and challenging with difficult questions. Its through the way we answering will some how reveal individual’s behaviour and personality. Rinpoche is able to see the weaker and stronger side of us individually. It is a game of fun and laughter, learning as well even though it reveals each psyche behaviour .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/tales-with-my-lama-the-famous-pick-game
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:47 PM
    Dorje Shugden’s connection with the Sakya School began hundreds of years ago. The truth is Dorje Shugden was first practiced within the great Sakya tradition where Dorje Shugden was first enthroned as an enlightened Dharma Protector before becoming a widespread protector practice within the Gelug tradition. Many Sakya throne holders and many great lamas had practiced Dorje Shugden and proliferated the practice. Even though Sakya and Gelug are from a different schools and traditions the core teachings in Buddhism is the same. We are all connected to each other though the teachings comes from a different tradition. Living in a way that embraces respect, and tolerance, without violence, physically, mentally and spiritually. We should practice the Buddha Dharma, the benefits will be immeasurable, support the Guru and to benefit all sentient beings .
    (What we all want is peace, both inside and around us, for ourselves and for others.)….quoted.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/growing-up-with-rinpoche-we-are-all-connected
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:45 PM
    Wow…… incredible experiences with Rinpoche. I could imagine the joy of witnessing and feeling the powerful energy at that time. We won’nt see this happening often. Reading this article , I understand much better now. Wow….. that’s a miraculous picture , seeing a streaming of lights out from Rinpoche , that was after looking at the photo taken earlier. I am fortunate to see and first time coming across picture of lighting phenomena. Hence visualization in our prayers is very important whether we can see or not do not matter as long as we trust and have faith in our guru in the practice.
    (To keep our Samaya clean with our teacher, we will always see our teacher and Buddha as one.)…. I will keep in mind.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Joy Kam for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/rinpoche-through-my-eyes-invoking-the-buddhas-to-come-forth
  • Yee Yin
    Sunday, Jul 21. 2019 12:26 PM
    UFO is another interesting paranormal subject. There were many sighting reports on UFOs all around the world. It is not an isolated report. The universe is so big, there are still many things we have not explored. Therefore, there is a very high possibility there are UFOs out there.

    The fact that we are not able to encounter one face to face could mean that they are much more advanced and intelligent than human beings. They do not want to have direct connection with human beings because they know we will keep them in captivity and hurt them.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/second-ufo-sighting-baffles-china-malaysia.html
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:57 PM
    Ganden Sumtseling or Songzanlin or Guihua Monastery is also known as “Little Potala Palace”. Sumtseling Monastery is located just outside the city of Zhongdian (later renamed to Shangri-la in 2001). It is the largest Buddhist monastery in Yunnan province. Established by the Great Fifth Dalai Lama in 1679, the monastery was built during the rule of Qing Dynasty Emperor Kangxi, who fully patronized the development of the monastery. One of the most special features of the monastery is its blending of Tibetan and Chinese-style architecture.

    Read more about this monastery at https://bit.ly/2xiTMCC
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:52 PM
    Archaeologists have come across a vast network of underwater ruins making up the ancient Roman city once known as Neapolis, which was largely washed away by a powerful tsunami around 1,700 years ago.

    Read more this at https://bit.ly/2ZNWVXi
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 12:47 PM
    He is known as the ‘guardian of Fukushima’s animals’ because of the work he does to feed the animals left behind by people in their rush to evacuate the government’s 12.5-mile exclusion zone. He is aware of the radiation he is subject to on a daily basis, but says that he “refuses to worry about it.” He does take steps, however, by only eating food imported into the zone.

    See more about his work https://bit.ly/2IQlI76
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:50 AM
    Over the last decades , China have since built more, huge impressive mega statues around the Chinese landscape. It seem these mega-statues are even more stunning than its towering skyscrapers and indeed very impressive. China is a great Buddhist land, with Buddha statues of all sizes rising up through history. And some of which are among the largest or tallest in the world. China has a long history of Buddhist art and sculpture. Through out history China been a great Buddhist land had built many awe-inspiring, Buddha statues, from been the highest to the largest statues in the world. I wish I could visit and see those huge Buddhist statues in future.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing with beautiful pictures of those huge statues.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/chinas-huge-buddha-statues.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:48 AM
    China is a vast country with many huge statues been built over the centuries. Having a long history of Buddhism, the statues been built with ancient architectures ,art and sculpture of various sizes . Some of those seem to be the world largest and tallest . Amazing to look at those beautiful statues been rich in their culture for thousands of years. They are built all over China, every province there are at least one or two amazing structure. Buddha statues are getting bigger on mainland China in bid to lure pilgrims and tourists. I would love to see those amazing structures Buddhist statues. Out of those 24 huge Statues in China , I have only visited Big Buddha of Lingshan (Buddha Shakyamuni), Big Buddha of Leshan, Sichuan, Samantabhadra, Sichuan Province and Manjushri, Shanxi Province.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/travel/chinas-huge-buddha-statues-chinese.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 11:47 AM
    Wow ….what a fantastic discovery by astronomers’ search . There are other habitable planets out in the sky. Planets like earth in the out space are not rare to the scientist. There’s more to life on earth and earth is often referred to as a Goldilocks planet. Astronomers found a first truly earth-like planet in habitable zone after years of research. New discovery lead by Steven Vogt and Paul Butler suggested our galaxy may be teeming with potentially habitable planets . Could not have imagine there are 200 billion stars in the universe, there could be a possibility that there are more life in other planets which are not yet found. Steven Scott Vogt and Paul Butler are one of those astronomer whose main interest is the search for extra solar planets. The planet Earth was believed to be the center of the universe, there are innumerable beings in the universe. Interesting read.
    According to the Buddha, there are some other forms of life existing in other parts of the universe. I do believe that as found in other Buddhist scriptures.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/a-planet-discovered-that-could-have-life.html
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:30 AM
    HONG KONG: Microplastic contamination has been found in tap water in countries around the world, leading to calls from scientists for urgent research on the implications for health.

    Scores of tap water samples from more than a dozen nations were analysed by scientists for an investigation by Orb Media, who shared the findings with the Guardian. Overall, 83 per cent of the samples were contaminated with plastic fibres.

    The US had the highest contamination rate, at 94 per cent, with plastic fibres found in tap water sampled at sites including Congress buildings, the US Environmental Protection Agency’s headquarters, and Trump Tower in New York. Lebanon and India had the next highest rates.

    Read more about this article at https://bit.ly/2xRfi1x
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:22 AM
    Every time you buy a fashion item made from leather – be it a trendy handbag, a piece of comfortable shoes – please think about the tremendous cruelty that stands at the foundation of that product. This petition targets both the Chinese government – who has repeatedly failed to adopt animal welfare laws and has allowed this industry to thrive – as well as consumers worldwide, to take the pledge to go cruel-free and stop purchasing leather products.

    Please stop buying leather products from today https://bit.ly/2sWcGMW
  • nicholas
    Saturday, Jul 20. 2019 02:16 AM
    There is some wonderful news in the animal world after California pet stores have been told they must get their puppies, kittens and rabbits from shelters and rescue centres only.

    As of January 2019, it will be illegal for stores to buy animals from pet breeders and any store being caught will face a fine of $500.

    Individual, private buyers will still be able to buy their pets from a breeder, reports the New York Times.

    Read more about this great news at https://bit.ly/2Jy8j1E
  • Anonymous
    Friday, Jul 19. 2019 10:06 PM
    [22:04, 19/7/2019] Vajrasecrets.com: Thanks to H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche for spreading information about Dorje Shugden.


    I am happy to say that Dorje Shugden is my new best friend. But he feels very familiar to me. It’s as if this is not my first encounter with him. Perhaps I was a Dorje Shugden fan in one of my past lives.


    I’ll keep this testimony simple without going into much detail about what happened. All I can say is I love you Dorje Shugden and I hope to have a better connection with you.


    Although I am not a Buddhist, I respect and accept other religions. I wish I had known about Dorje Shugden much earlier because I have been volunteering for Kechara since 2017.



    Here are a few situations where I have experienced miraculous results:
    1. I had problems waking up on Saturday. After saying OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA once, I could feel my muscles getting better and it was just easy for me to wake up.
    2. My eyes suddenly hurt when I was doing my work in front of the computer. I could not open them so I began uttering OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA in silence. To my surprise, my eyes were not sore anymore. After the third recitation, my problem went away.
    I am not going to go into detail about what happened because I am a private person, but DS is amazing.
    3. I have awards in my field of work, but I could not do my work. That was my first encounter with Dorje Shugden’s mantra. After I said the mantra, I started coughing and felt like throwing up. The next day, I could finish my work.
    4. A lady suddenly caused me trouble. I accepted the fact that she did not like me and expressed how I felt to her expecting that day would turn into a horrible day. She suddenly told me that she would follow everything I told her without any questions asked.
    I did not say OM BENZA WIKI BITANA SOHA at that time, but at that moment when she responded to me in that way, I somehow knew or felt that it was Dorje Shugden’s assistance. I did not even ask him and he was there.
    5. I felt a positive shift….like a strong knowing that everything is going to be alright. And I felt that message was from Dorje Shugden.
    There are too many stories to share.
    Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
    I love you. Thank you.
    Anonymous
    (Discovered about Dorje Shugden on 27th June, 2019, From YouTube, Dorje Shugden’s mantra)
    [no sender]

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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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
6 days 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 week 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 weeks 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
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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
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Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
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1 month 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
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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
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Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 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.
2 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.
2 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.
2 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
2 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
2 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!!!
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 months ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
2 months ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
2 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
2 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
2 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
3 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
3 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
3 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
3 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
3 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.
3 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
3 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
3 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.
3 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.
3 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
3 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
3 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
3 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
3 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
3 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
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
3 months ago
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
3 months ago
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
3 months ago
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
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Videos On The Go

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    3 weeks ago
    Cute Tara girl having a snack. She is one of Kechara Forest Retreat’s resident doggies.
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    1 month ago
    Your Next Meal!
    Yummy? Tasty? Behind the scenes of the meat on your plates. Meat is a killing industry.
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    They do this every day!
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    2 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
    3 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.
    3 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
    3 months ago
    Beautiful Monastery in Hong Kong
  • This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    4 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.
    4 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.
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    5 months ago
    Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    6 months ago
    SUPER ADORABLE and must see
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  • Cute!
    6 months ago
    Cute!
    Oser girl loves the balcony so much. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
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    7 months ago
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    Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
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    7 months ago
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    7 months ago
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    7 months ago
    His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche makes offering of khata to Dorje Shugden.
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    This happens daily in slaughterhouse so you can get your pork and Bak ku teh. Stop eating meat.

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

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CHAT PICTURES

Madam Glian Sim prepared the water bowls before the water offerings were started. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
4 hours ago
Madam Glian Sim prepared the water bowls before the water offerings were started. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Mr. Cheah Fook Wan offered lights and incense to The Three Jewels on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
4 hours ago
Mr. Cheah Fook Wan offered lights and incense to The Three Jewels on behalf of KISG today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
Janice So has offered flowers to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara and all Buddhas prior to the prayer. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
4 hours ago
Janice So has offered flowers to Lama Tsongkhapa, Mother Tara and all Buddhas prior to the prayer. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
KISG has carried a session of prayer recitations to Mother Tara in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
5 hours ago
KISG has carried a session of prayer recitations to Mother Tara in Ipoh today. So Kin Hoe (KISG)
We have new student last week. He is only 3 years old. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
We have new student last week. He is only 3 years old. Lin Mun KSDS
Wow most students can do full lotus. Rejoice. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Wow most students can do full lotus. Rejoice. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Alice guided students to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Teacher Alice guided students to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
We have Robey showing us the right way to do plank during the exercise session. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
We have Robey showing us the right way to do plank during the exercise session. Lin Mun KSDS
Students enjoyed activities last Sunday. Exercise and stretching lesson. Lin Mun KSDS
2 days ago
Students enjoyed activities last Sunday. Exercise and stretching lesson. Lin Mun KSDS
Thanks to Uncle Edward, Karen, Ashley Tan, Ashley Eng, Neil, Usha and Sudharshan for helping out for our lunch distribution today. We would also like to thank our sponsors Sogo and Munchy's for their continuous support. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 days ago
Thanks to Uncle Edward, Karen, Ashley Tan, Ashley Eng, Neil, Usha and Sudharshan for helping out for our lunch distribution today. We would also like to thank our sponsors Sogo and Munchy's for their continuous support. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
These are some of the food distribution photos taken from our kitchen last Saturday. We thanked all volunteers who have come to help for the preparation since 3pm. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 days ago
These are some of the food distribution photos taken from our kitchen last Saturday. We thanked all volunteers who have come to help for the preparation since 3pm. ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Teacher Julie taught children Nagomi Art and they love it. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Teacher Julie taught children Nagomi Art and they love it. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback - Children volunteered in Kechara Soup Kitchen. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback - Children volunteered in Kechara Soup Kitchen. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- Fun activity in camp. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback- Fun activity in camp. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback - DIY soap making activity. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback - DIY soap making activity. Lin Mun KSDS
Throwback- KSDS camp in Kechara Forest Retreat. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Throwback- KSDS camp in Kechara Forest Retreat. Lin Mun KSDS
A simple but meaningful way to spend the weekend liberating birds. Animals deserve lots of love, care and freedom too. Through them, we learn to be more compassionate! ~Kechara Penang Study Group Jacinta
1 week ago
A simple but meaningful way to spend the weekend liberating birds. Animals deserve lots of love, care and freedom too. Through them, we learn to be more compassionate! ~Kechara Penang Study Group Jacinta
Some members from Kechara Penang Study Group get together to do a Dorje Shugden puja this afternoon. Join us if you're in Penang next time. ~KPSG Jacinta
1 week ago
Some members from Kechara Penang Study Group get together to do a Dorje Shugden puja this afternoon. Join us if you're in Penang next time. ~KPSG Jacinta
Today we received a lot recycling items from the public. Thanks for supporting us always. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Today we received a lot recycling items from the public. Thanks for supporting us always. KEP-Serena
Today we are doing recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Today we are doing recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 1st Prize Winner is Stella Cheang. Congratulations! Stella wins a Dorje Shugden Puja worth RM400 + Dorje Shugden pendant on black onyx. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
1 week ago
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 1st Prize Winner is Stella Cheang. Congratulations! Stella wins a Dorje Shugden Puja worth RM400 + Dorje Shugden pendant on black onyx. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 2nd Prize Winner is Wylfred Ng. Congratulations! Wylfred wins a Gyenze pendant + Original Red Crystal incense. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
1 week ago
Winners for Blog Chat Quiz in June 2019: 2nd Prize Winner is Wylfred Ng. Congratulations! Wylfred wins a Gyenze pendant + Original Red Crystal incense. (Joy - Blog chat moderator)
How to Clear Spirit Disturbances by Pastor Chia Today at 9:30 PM – 11 PM in Kechara House, PJ
2 weeks ago
How to Clear Spirit Disturbances by Pastor Chia Today at 9:30 PM – 11 PM in Kechara House, PJ
Join us for the annual Ullambana Festival on Saturday August 10th at Kechara Forest Retreat and make the most of the auspicious Ullambana month. PROGRAMME: 9:00am – Opening speech & Dharma sharing 9:30am – Grand Ullambana Gyenze Puja for good fortune, long life & merits 12:15pm – Free vegetarian lunch 2:00pm – Grand Ullambana Trakze Puja for protection & blessings 5:00pm – End The highlight of the Ullambana Festival is two powerful & extensive pujas that will be performed according to the tradition of Gaden Monastery. We've also prepared a wide selection of traditional offerings to send bountiful merits to the people who matter in your life. Don't miss this opportunity to bring tremendous benefits to your dearly departed as well as those who are still with you. For more information on the Ullambana Festival and Ullambana offerings, please get in touch with us at +609 221 5600, +603 7803 3908, +6012 987 3908 (WhatsApp only), care@kechara.com or visit our online partner
2 weeks ago
Join us for the annual Ullambana Festival on Saturday August 10th at Kechara Forest Retreat and make the most of the auspicious Ullambana month. PROGRAMME: 9:00am – Opening speech & Dharma sharing 9:30am – Grand Ullambana Gyenze Puja for good fortune, long life & merits 12:15pm – Free vegetarian lunch 2:00pm – Grand Ullambana Trakze Puja for protection & blessings 5:00pm – End The highlight of the Ullambana Festival is two powerful & extensive pujas that will be performed according to the tradition of Gaden Monastery. We've also prepared a wide selection of traditional offerings to send bountiful merits to the people who matter in your life. Don't miss this opportunity to bring tremendous benefits to your dearly departed as well as those who are still with you. For more information on the Ullambana Festival and Ullambana offerings, please get in touch with us at +609 221 5600, +603 7803 3908, +6012 987 3908 (WhatsApp only), care@kechara.com or visit our online partner
Join us this weekend for SPIRITUAL SATURDAY in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 13 JULY 9.00 am: Cook for the community - salted eggs & pineapple jam 11.00 am: Book Club - Compassion Conquers All (Eng) / Time To Wake Up (Chi) 12.30 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!), contact us: +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See all July activities: bit.ly/2FCrJm6
2 weeks ago
Join us this weekend for SPIRITUAL SATURDAY in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 13 JULY 9.00 am: Cook for the community - salted eggs & pineapple jam 11.00 am: Book Club - Compassion Conquers All (Eng) / Time To Wake Up (Chi) 12.30 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!), contact us: +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See all July activities: bit.ly/2FCrJm6
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Sri Lanka 80,382
United Arab Emirates 74,853
South Africa 73,319
Mexico 72,127
Myanmar (Burma) 68,036
New Zealand 67,737
Switzerland 63,990
Japan 60,228
Cambodia 58,155
South Korea 56,956
Bangladesh 51,753
Pakistan 51,032
Egypt 45,203
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Dorje Shugden
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