What’s Your Retirement Plan?

Dec 20, 2015 | Views: 631

Apart from raising family, retirement is one of the most important things that most people plan for. However, can we really be sure that the retirement we plan for will turn out as we expect it to? Can we be sure that the children and family we depend on will be alive and available to care for us when we are old? Nothing is ever certain; no matter how much planning we do, things may go wrong. The economy changes, natural disasters occur, death comes… The reality is, we are never in control of anything around us, much less our own lives. 

While many things in life are uncertain, there is only one thing that will bring about positive results of happiness and that is Dharma. Why? Because throughout the centuries, Dharma practitioners, whether they are lay people or ordained, have shown the results of practicing Dharma that leads to a fulfilling life of happiness. While on the other hand, take a look around you: those who have no Dharma or have not practiced Dharma in their lives… How do they live their life before and after they have retired from secular jobs? In their old age, most people just pass the time in coffee shops, playing chess or mahjong, chatting with the same friends every day, not because they enjoy each other’s company but because there is nothing better to do. I am not putting them down or saying that the way they live their lives is wrong. I’m pointing it out and putting forward this question to you: “Is that all you’re looking forward to doing in your old age?”

Some people may think that they will do Dharma when they are older, and so they continue to indulge and disregard or defer their Dharma practice. But just think: if you are accustomed to living a life that continuously seeks fun, parties, games, money, etc. for the last 50 years, what makes you think that you can change your ways when you’re older? In fact, it will be even more difficult to let go of these attachments when we’re older because the habituation is just too strong… and by the time we are physically unable to have fun and parties, it would also mean we are too old to do much for Dharma… and then this precious human life is wasted.

I’m not writing this to target or hurt anyone. I am just sharing with you my observation of how things work in samsara according to Buddha. The truth always hurts and if you feel irked by what I have mentioned here, then deep down, you know your life is heading in that direction. The good thing is, change is possible and it is all up to us to make that change. You can change now. I hope that this article will help some to start engaging more intensively in Dharma practice for their future lives, and for a more meaningful current life. May many more people have a higher purpose in life such as entering long retreats in their later years, rather than hanging around coffee shops, waiting for death. 

Tsem Rinpoche 

 


 

Not All Smiles for Some Retirees in Chiang Mai

Foreigners who do not plan ahead could end up abandoned and alone, infirm and destitute

Mrs. Nancy Lindley

It is 2pm in Chiang Mai as Mrs Nancy Lindley wheels frail 74-year-old former stockbroker David Descault to the bank to close his accounts.

The American has lived 10 years in Chiang Mai. Thin as a rake and wheelchair-bound after a hip fracture around 19 months ago, he is due to travel home to Los Angeles, his passage funded by a loan under a United States Consulate programme.

As he collects his meagre few hundred baht, he banters with Mrs Lindley, saying with a short acerbic laugh: “I may get depressed, I may have some regrets, but I haven’t lost my sense of humour.”

He is an alcoholic who has no children. He was living alone in Chiang Mai and broke his hip but was “in denial and just lay in bed drinking until the neighbours became concerned and called us”, said Mrs Lindley. Now, out of money and with no family left, he is going directly to a nursing home in the US. His US Government pension cheque will be redirected to the home.

With several thousand foreign retirees in Chiang Mai, Mr Descault’s is not an unusual story, especially for British and American pensioners.

Mrs Lindley coordinates Lannacare Net, a voluntary network which helps retirees live “safe and healthy lives” and, especially, helps those in trouble. And there can be a lot of elderly foreigners in distress in Chiang Mai, long a retirement place for Thais especially from busy Bangkok, and lately a growing retirement destination for foreigners.

But it is also a place where those foreigners who do not plan ahead can disastrously run out of options and end up abandoned and alone, infirm and destitute, or any combination of the above, in a foreign country.

“There’s never any one situation,” Mrs Lindley told The Sunday Times. “The American and British cases tend to be very complex where you have issues of alcohol, orthopaedic fractures and, often, failed relationships with Thai people, financial problems, visa issues, and underlying diseases.”

Lately, there is a new worry: Senior retirees in Chiang Mai unsure of their visa status under the new, tight military regime. Some have stayed beyond their visa limit and, under the tighter regulations, may not be allowed into the country again. Several are leaving now and may never return.

Those on retirement visas are safe. Thailand grants retirement visas if you are over 50 and can show that you have 800,000 baht (S$31,320) in the bank. And while the government welcomes long-staying foreigners, the retirement visa comes with one iron rule – you cannot work.

There is no shortage of people extolling Chiang Mai as a retirement haven. Live And Invest Overseas, a US-based magazine specialising in evaluating overseas destinations, this year rated Chiang Mai among its top 10 retirement cities.

With a population of around 1.5 million, Chiang Mai is about one-fifth the size of Bangkok. It has a distinct character – ancient brick fortress walls, old wooden houses, many temples, changes of season and a cold but not freezing winter, seven international schools and a vibrant cosmopolitan community.

On the downside, it is getting crowded and risks choking on its own success; traffic jams are now common and, in the winter, pollution combines with smoke from open burning across northern Thailand and Myanmar to cast a pall over the city.

But the cost of living is still about half that of Bangkok’s, a third of Singapore’s and a fifth of western Europe’s. Good quality, 24/7 home health care costs roughly 40,000 baht a month – a fraction of what it is in the US or Europe.

In an experiment, Australian-born author and blogger Godfree Roberts, a Chiang Mai fan, spent two months in the city with his wife, mimicking retired life. They found that they lived comfortably on US$1,370 (S$1,744) per month, or US$685 per person. In 2012, he wrote that US$1,200 in Chiang Mai will give you a US$3,000 lifestyle.

Singaporean Jacob Loh, 64, who retired after 25 years in the advertising industry, compared the cost of living in Chiang Mai, Penang in Malaysia and other places in the region before choosing the northern Thai city.

Over coffee at a steak and ribs restaurant in the city’s newest, most glitzy mall, the Promenada, he said: “Food here is about 50 per cent to 60 per cent cheaper than in Singapore.”

Once married and now single with no children, he moved to Chiang Mai in 2009. “My main reason for moving to Chiang Mai is cost. And I need a roof over my head.

“In Singapore, I have one asset – the HDB flat. My CPF gives me just $400 a month. I can’t survive in Singapore,” he said.

In Chiang Mai, he rents a one-bedroom terrace house in a small leafy walled enclave for 8,500 baht a month. If he wanted to, he could get a two-room condo in a building with full amenities for 4 million baht, he said – half the price of a similar place in downtown Bangkok. Foreigners can buy condos, but cannot own land except through a Thai partner or company.

To support himself, Mr Loh rents out his three-room HDB flat back home for $1,600 a month.

That is what most foreigners do, said Mrs June Unland, 46, a Singaporean who lives in Chiang Mai with her husband and is active in the expat community. “You rent out your HDB flat and if you live modestly, you can live in Chiang Mai on $1,000 to $1,500 a month.”

But retirees need to plan ahead, she cautioned. The message was echoed by many expatriates, young and old, and of different nationalities, who spoke to The Sunday Times.

Mrs Lindley, 64, herself a retiree, has been in Chiang Mai with her husband for six years and is also the president of the Chiang Mai Expats Club.

She has seen the enthusiastic newcomers, those who thrive and also those who crash their lives here.

She has also seen foreigners never opening a local bank account and drawing cash from their overseas account through the ATM. She has seen some forget their PIN numbers and lose their cards to the machine. She has seen people incapacitated by an accident or a stroke and forgetting passwords and PINs. Worse, she has seen people trust others with their financial details and passwords.

Financial planning and a reliable social network are critical, she stresses. “You need a trusted friend who is not just a barstool buddy,” she warns.

Lannacare Net also recommends a detailed advance directive, specifying what is to be done in case of an accident or health crisis.

The demographics of the foreign retirees are slowly changing, from single men to couples. The presence of retirees has also spawned support industries, from residential developments to upscale hospitals with multi-lingual staff, said Mr Visut Buachum, Tourism Authority of Thailand regional director.

Assisted living is a new and booming industry, he noted, with at least two or three facilities coming up. Health-care professionals caution, though, that standards at these facilities may be an issue in future.

Currently, Lannacare Net’s website lists just two assisted living facilities. The first to offer such services, and using an Australian model for assisted living, is Dok Kaew Gardens, which opened in 2009.

Some 10km south of Chiang Mai, in the vast compound of the 106-year-old McKean Hospital under towering rain trees, Dok Kaew offers assisted living at 32,000 to 45,000 baht a month, according to the level of care needed.

It has 20 residents, one of whom is Mr Burnett Roberts, 80, a former geologist from the US who planned ahead and does not intend to leave Thailand. He retired in Thailand 15 years ago and lived in Pattaya. Facing failing health, he moved to Dok Kaew just over a year ago.

He rolls around the grounds, covering around 5km every day on his electric wheelchair, and is actively engaged with the world through the Internet in his room. “I have a choice, but I would not go back to the States,” he said. “I tell everyone the only way I’m leaving is through the chimney at the crematorium.”

Not all retirement stories end in misery, Mrs Lindley says.

“I have seen some excellent role models here of people in their 80s who are doing very well, but they have really gone out of their way to establish relationships and keep active,” she says. “Every day, there is something on the calendar, where they will be missed if they don’t show up.

“You have to keep those contacts going. Some people will swear by Thai families to take care of them, and if it is the right person, it can be good, but I think you do need to keep contacts with your own nationality.”

Singaporean Jacob Loh has no illusions. He has friends. He is active, playing badminton and going to the gym.

Like other Singaporeans settled here, he has one advantage over the European, American, Japanese and Australian retirees – Singapore is just three hours away on a plane.

“If you are a sociable person, you will find a lot of opportunities for social interaction here,” he says. “But as a foreigner living anywhere, you have to make sure you can take care of yourself financially. You do have to fend for yourself.”

nirmal@sph.com.sg
This article was first published on Oct 12, 2014

Volunteer John Collins with a resident in the Dok Kaew assisted living facility, also known as Dok Kaew Gardens, which is located 10km south of Chiang Mai, in the vast compound of the 106-year-old McKean Hospital

American David Descault, 74, assisted by Lannacare Net coordinator Nancy Lindley, has lived in Chiang Mai for 10 years. Now, out of money and with no family left, he is due to travel home to Los Angeles

Singaporean Jacob Loh, 64, moved to Chiang Mai in 2009, and rents a one-bedroom terrace house there. To support himself, Mr Loh rents out his three-room HDB flat back home for $1,600 a month

[Source:  http://www.straitstimes.com/news/asia/south-east-asia/story/not-all-smiles-some-retirees-chiang-mai-20141012#xtor=CS1-10]

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29 Responses to What’s Your Retirement Plan?

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  1. Katie Choong on May 2, 2019 at 11:33 pm

    Talking about retirement usually brings to mind financial issues. As I grow, i wonder how much have I given to preparing my psychological portfolio. Also, I think it is important to understand that retirement does not have to occur at a certain age. It is dynamic.

  2. Julia Tan on Apr 26, 2019 at 8:55 pm

    i think i have a good retirement plan by choosing Kechara Forest Retreat, bentong, Malaysia, as my home for the rest of my life. Before I met the Dharma, what i was chasing after simply meaningless. When I think about it now, so much money wasted into those meaningless items and did not bring me any benefits. We work so hard everyday, until we forgot how to live. I was constantly in insecure state of mind. Many times i broke down and cried and cried and cried to those small small matters and i did not know why. I was anger some and gotten frustrated easily. Not knowing the stress and insecure inside me that i have been built up day in day out where i even i have take pills to sleep.

    After started to study and practice Dharma bit by bit, this insecure state of mind slowly disappeared without me even knowing. One day I decided to down scaled what i want and i focus on what i really need and matters that really make me live. I want a life that i can feel self worth everyday. everyday, bit by bit i added Dharma value into my life. That made me feel fresh and happy everyday. That was my story by choosing Dharma for retirement. Many of us choose to retire in Kechara Forest Retreat where we can proceed our spiritual practice at the same time we are building a conscious community.

    I retired at late 30s, because i have seen many regret because of “too late”. We may plan long and old retirement when we got enough money but deep down inside we know, it will never be enough money, until we transform our mind and our life.

  3. Datuk May on Apr 21, 2019 at 5:02 pm

    I like Ming Wen”s comment and for someone so young to think of retirement plan as now and not when. “When” meaning at the time we can no longer conduct secular work normally at 60years old and older or when we are incapacitated and can no longer be in the work force.

    In my point of view, retirement is a form of being out of my normal way of life and I may find idle time on my hands. So retirement plan must be formulated now and retirement must be practised before it happens.

    As mentioned by H.E. Tsem Rinpoche, same applies when we practise the Dharma, it is not when we have time on our hands but rather constantly living the teaching of practising compassion and right view of all phenomena.

    Let us prepare retirement NOW and not WHEN.

  4. Samfoonheei on Apr 18, 2019 at 1:22 pm

    Nevertheless, the weight of planning for our retirement will start to loom heavier each year. Personal retirement planning is often an intense challenge for loving parents with young children. There’s never enough time to do all the nothing we want. Having a family , successful career is not all. Life is uncertain and nothing is permanent. We ought to think further than that , we should make use of our time meaningful . A happy retirement filled with fun, happiness and compassionate where we engage in dharma all the well through, to have it make some difference that we have lived and lived well. Being happy is accepting where we are in life and making the most out of it every day, minutes meaningfully. Choosing to learn and practice dharma , volunteering , helping those who needs help is my choice . And preparing for the next journey as time is running out .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this profound teachings .

  5. Pastor Chia on Apr 18, 2019 at 9:15 am

    As a buddhist for 20 years, my retirement will be engage more spiritual retreat, find peace in mind and prepare for my next life. Most of people forget what meaningful. Just enjoy and relax did not plan for next life , is wasting our perfect human life. All the enjoyment are short after retirement. I would not bring peace and happiness when death come nearby.

  6. Pastor Henry Ooi on Apr 17, 2019 at 5:39 pm

    Most of us would have a retirement plan, a plan we wish to take things easy after working for most of our adult life. The plan varies for each person but most plans did not materialize because of illness, tragedy, death. There could be emergencies where the money put side for the plan was used partially or in full for emergencies, thus dashing the hope for the retirement one envisaged. We may have a retirement plan but we don’t plan for our death of which is certain. When our plan did not materialize, we got disappointed, some of us become bitter and sink into depression because of our expectation that such calamities would happen to some other guy but not to us. We dismiss the thought that we would live forever and in some cultures, it could be taboo to think or speak about death. It would greatly help us to contemplate about death, the only thing in life that is certain.

  7. Mingwen on Apr 17, 2019 at 7:58 am

    A powerful message shared by Tsem Rinpoche.

    If not now, WHEN?

    – Tsem Rinpoche

    Such a big alarm clock in life. This alarm wake us up from our comfort zone, make us move ourselves on from being procrastination, lazy & unmotivated.

    If we don’t do it now, when will we do it? Tomorrow? The day after Tomorrow? Next week? Next month? Next year? Next decade? & we died & regret?

    WHEN..?

  8. June Kang on Apr 17, 2019 at 7:07 am

    We are being educated that success in life is we must have a retirement plan. If we achieved, we are successful persons. Some of us may have it but we give up or totally forgotten it due to life challenges. It is nothing wrong to have a successful retirement life, but are we happy when we get what we want with the death is certain and always waiting for us. As a Buddhist, most of us have no plan for next life which is more important than retirement plan.

  9. Vivian Ong on Apr 17, 2019 at 1:26 am

    The more you plan the more it will not go the way uou want it to be. I think best to apply Dharma to whatever situations we face and overcome it. Doing dharma work is beneficial as it prepares you for your future lives. For a person who is non-dharmic, I would suggest if they retire at the age of 55, best is to find something to do for example helping out at temple or doing something they like to do to keep their mind occupied and alert. People who retire and do nothing at home, their health and mind will deteriorate quicker.

  10. Tek Lee on Apr 17, 2019 at 1:01 am

    Yes, everybody should plan for their retirement. It can be said a goal of life that everybody looking forward for. But in many situations and circumstances, things don’t turn out like what have planned. And, we don’t know whether we can live until retirement. It is true that everybody earn hard and save hard now for their retirement, what if we die tomorrow? there’ll be no retirement for us already. Practicing Dharma is the best way of planning. It works whether we live until tomorrow or we live until retire. Many of us would think to go travel around the world, do gardening, take care of grand children (if we have) after retirement. But how long we can live our life like that? Say we still have another 10 years of life? Even we have the money to travel around the world for 10 years, does our health allow us to do so? By the age we retire, we are actually stepping nearer to our coffin. By practicing Dharma, we are actually preparing for our death, do charity, so that we don’t live our life in vain.

  11. Andrea Lai on Apr 17, 2019 at 12:05 am

    I think this is an important subject that everybody needed to reconsider. As we start aging, all our ability, strength starts stringing. Our brain will start deteriorate. This is circle of life that all sentient beings had to go thru. Before, I start practicing Dharma, I will feel terrified and worried over the issue of being abandon, useless and old. 3 years in Dharma environment now, I realized Dharma is not a one day job. It is a consistency thing we need to practice no matter to our likes and dislikes. Most importantly, apply Dharma to help, lighten others burden and benefit others. Make good use of our life to make others happy and without feeling regret.

  12. Justin on Apr 16, 2019 at 10:47 pm

    Life is impermanent and full of swings from one end to another making it particularly hard to really know what can go wrong for you with your planning. Well things we want might not end up be with ours and this is one basis where people don’t feel happy when this happens as depicted in the Four Noble Truths and then again there might be things you initially planned in the beginning to only do something when you reach certain level like for example; do charity when you are rich. When you are rich, you might have other priorities already by then. So for me, I don’t really plan but learned how to be flexible and change whenever we need to as life is ever changing.

  13. pammie yap on Apr 16, 2019 at 8:31 pm

    Many people work very hard for now thinking that they can save for themselves, family or future. It’s not wrong. But wouldn’t it be better to couple it with Dharma along the way. What if one day, we don’t wake up anymore? What else can we bring after we die? All the riches in the world cannot stop death but with Dharma, it is something we can bring forward and continue because it is the most precious we can have. Learning Dharma is the best way to motivate ourselves to keep on absorbing and expanding. It is the best gift Buddha and our Guru given to us.

  14. Fong on Aug 1, 2016 at 9:30 pm

    We can never be sure of how we will end up as we age. Even our best laid plans may prove to have holes in it. Nothing is sure in Samsara except suffering.

    We can work for a good end and passage to the next life and hope that we have done enough. Some may yearn to get out of this hamster wheel, but then again many get discouraged along the way.

    The younger ones are full of energy and cannot relate to old age and passing on, the older ones do not have the energy to do what is required on the Dharma path. Blessed are the ones who can connect with Dharma early in their lives.

    Thank you, Rinpoche for reminding us always to connect with Dharma and to practice.

    • Marek on Dec 22, 2016 at 11:33 pm

      dharma practice – sure, to “feed your soul”, yet how can you feed your soul if you have no roof over your head, clothes on your back, money in your pocket or food on your table?

      • Fong on Dec 23, 2016 at 1:24 am

        All the more colder without the dharma. Been there done that

        • Marek on Dec 23, 2016 at 10:14 pm

          OK, we need the dharma, I don’t disagree with that, at the same time – we all have physical and material needs – we don’t all need Rolls Royces, BMWs, Mercedes Benz, Rolex watches, we all need to be literate, numerate, fed, clothed, housed, cared for when sick, adequately medicated when sick, capable of acquiring an income for our own security as well as that of our families – Buddha Shakyamuni left his wife and child in silence without notification so that he could attain/discover/reaffirm the truth, HOWEVER, his wife and son weren’t left starving, homeless, hungry or isolated, so we all have to be extremely careful on entering any “spiritual” path – are we genuinely seeking salvation or escaping our responsibilities?

          • Fong on Dec 25, 2016 at 10:54 am

            Agreed, we all have to make our way in this world, we have to survive it, this precious human life also means we have to live this life in this world, we need food, shelter and are subject to the vagaries of this human body. Agreed too that the Buddha was of royal birth and his family were not left in want when he left. We are not so lucky, so we have to work very hard to balance that. It may not be agreeable to many, but it is our family, our responsibility to bear and balance such that it does not disturb their minds and yet be able for them to not be averse but to maybe be able to walk the path too. If that is not appreciated by onlookers, it remains just that, they are on lookers and not in our shoes. It is their perception.

            We must also practice compassion for the family not just for all others and leave the family in want. If we cannot have harmony within the family, if we cannot have compassion for those nearest and dearest to us in this life, how can we have compassion, genuine compassion for others? Who are we to disturb others’ minds? Do we want our children to swear off any religion because we abandoned them? Aren’t we supposed to calm their mind, and bring them to dharma?

            It’s a very fine line to walk. I appreciate those who try to walk the path and yet try to bring their family to dharma. It’s a very exhausting walk. It may not seem that they are interested in the dharma because they care too for their family. Appreciate their striving for their middle way. Walk a mile in their shoes.

  15. Wan Wai Meng on May 22, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    Many people like to delay Dharma or seeking the truth till they have completed their tasks at hand, no matter what it is. Or just enjoying life and party, but party has to stop at some point. I like what Rinpoche said and that is at some point the things we enjoyed before we cannot enjoy it forever. Then what? I suppose since many people our loved ones made so much preparation for us to come into this world,and that is a significant aspect of our lives, the same should also be extended to our departure of this earth as “John Doe” or whomever we have created an identity around. Even more so is to prepare for the next journey after this life. As those of us who believe this life ending is not the END, we should prepare for the countless lives ahead, not just this one life which will end soon enough. If we are not prepared and we still draw breath, NOW is the TIME.

  16. wooishen on Jan 31, 2016 at 12:31 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for sharing this article. you wake me up… we should not waste our time…

    Start it now…. The younger we change our habit and attitude…. The better we are..

    WooiShen

  17. Chris Chong on Jan 17, 2016 at 11:40 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for sharing this article. Many people start to think about their retirement even when they are in the thirties. They need to plan ahead so that when they retire at the ripe age they will have enough resources to last them through the remaining of their lives and they will have activities to occupy all those free times. Most of the people will spend all their time working trying to make their dream retirement come true and they sacrificed other aspects of their life in persue of wealth to sustain the dream. Little did they know that the future is unpredictable. In the worst case scenario, they might not even live till that age to retire. Then, they will have regrets of not treasuring the NOW moment of their life.

    In my hometown, most people there will have the mindset of having a relaxed and minimalistic life when they retire. They will laze their day away in coffee shops chatting away with their friends, or in front of a tv while waiting for their kids to come back from work. This is the ideal retirement plan for most of them. To me, it is very unproductive and they could had engage in more beneficial activities.

    If they know dharma, things will be different. They will cherish their precious human rebirth and make full use of it. They will stop chasing after the retirement dream and work hard to escape from samsara. It is sad to see old people suffer in samsaric means with no way to escape but to endure and the worst part is they will enter into the same cycle over and over again due to their imprints.

    Chris

  18. JP on Jan 9, 2016 at 10:50 pm

    “But just think: if you are accustomed to living a life that continuously seeks fun, parties, games, money, etc. for the last 50 years, what makes you think that you can change your ways when you’re older? In fact, it will be even more difficult to let go of these attachments when we’re older because the habituation is just too strong… and by the time we are physically unable to have fun and parties, it would also mean we are too old to do much for Dharma… and then this precious human life is wasted.”

    The above message makes so much sense. There are so many things I find difficult to change now, let alone decades later when my habits become more ingrained. So if we don’t put in the effort now, then we will most likely not change for the better.

    The article shows how “stuck” the retirees are in their situation and they are pretty much helpless because they didn’t plan for their retirement financially. Some end up depressed and turned to alcohol to numb their suffering. I have met many senior people who become angry and bitter as they age. I believe this is because they have become so fixated with their views and attachments that they become very upset when these views and attachments are not met.

    If they had practiced the dharma teachings and put in the efforts to change these habits, they would be much happier as they age. For advanced practitioners, they can even prepare for their rebirth and not be terrified of their death.

  19. NgJesvin on Dec 31, 2015 at 8:21 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article. Getting older is a process of life. We couldn’t choose our birth but we definitely can choose the way we go through our elderly days.

    This article give me a window to plan on what kind of retirement life that i am looking forward to. Yes, dharma cannot wait, we have to start practice and do dharma work now, otherwise the attachment will get stronger and stronger until we have no room to ease it. Practice dharma plays a very important role because death is imminent.

    Early this year, one my students pass ed away at her age of 21 years old due to cancer. In her last moments the words came out from her mouth is pain. She told her mother, “mummy I am so in pain, I couldn’t breath, I am so scare…”. I am so sad and her incident gave me a realization on impermanence. We have to overcome the fear of death.

    There is one more story of my ex-classmate. He passed away in the mid of this year with his daughter in an accident. The sudden death of both brought a huge sadness to the family especially the wife who had just delivered a baby girl whom is two weeks old and his mother. I attended his wake with tears. Again his incident tells me that it is time to prepare before “it” comes.

    Lastly, I would like to use Rinpoche’s quote “if not now, when?” We have to prepare our retirement plan not only in the sense of material but spirituality.

    With hand folded,
    Ng Jesvin

  20. Eric Ho Kok Meng on Dec 29, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article with us. I totally agreed with Mr Jacob Loh for investing in property, a Singaporean at his 64, moved to Chiang Mai in 2009, and rents a one-bedroom terrace house there. To support himself, Mr Loh rents out his three-room HDB flat back home for $1,600 a month. He is wise in his financial decision because property always align with inflation. By renting out his HDB flat, he would able to survived in Chiang Mai which is much cheaper the living cost there. I also agree with Rinpoche for not procrastinate further in our spiritual practice because we will never put priority in them, until we really need it. But when we really wanted to start, it’s always too late.

    With Folded Hands
    Eric Ho

  21. Uncle Eddie on Dec 24, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    These holy words of Wisdom say it all: “AGE DESTROYS YOUTH, SICKNESS DESTROYS HEALTH, DEGENERATION OF LIFE DESTROYS ALL EXCELLENT QUALITIES AND DEATH DESTROYS LIFE. EVEN IF YOU ARE A GREAT RUNNER, YOU CAN’T RUN AWAY FROM DEATH. YOU CANNOT STOP DEATH WITH YOUR WEALTH, THROUGH YOUR MAGIC PERFORMANCES OR RECITATION OF MANTRAS OR EVEN MEDICINES. THEREFORE, IT IS WISE TO PREPARE FOR YOUR DEATH.” They invite you to begin the journey with the great religious and spiritual masters of all time to save yourself after LIFE. PLEASE DO NOT PROCASTINATE! THANK YOU RINPOCHE FOR YOUR GREAT COMPASSION.

  22. Lin Mun on Dec 24, 2015 at 11:33 am

    Thanks Rinpoche for sharing this articles and what is happening around us. Some points I learned from this articles :

    1) Nothing is certain so it is very important for us to plan for our retirement. It is not only about material but spiritual preparedness.

    2) Don’t waste time thinking that we will only do dharma work only when we retire. We can start now. Most of the time we put others as priority and dharma as the last.

    3) We can start planning for retirement and doing dharma work at the same time. It is how we plan our time.

    4) We should plan to retire happy and not regret for not doing enough.

    5) It is not too late to change now if we want to. Do it now.

  23. Stella Cheang on Dec 23, 2015 at 7:20 pm

    Retirement is certainly on the top of our head for people in rat race like myself. Many lunch sessions were well spent discussing and exchanging notes on retirement plan or finding ways towards early retirement. By the time we retire, we are old and unproductive, there is little meaningful things we can do. By that time, should we decide to engage in Dharmic activities, there will be little or no effect. In a spiritual sense, it is like a whole life wasted.

    In summary, if we are serious about Dharma, why wait until we retire. We can start doing something now. Thank you so much, Rinpoche, for sharing this thought provoking article with us.

    Humbly, bowing down,
    Stella Cheang

  24. Jason on Dec 23, 2015 at 2:51 am

    Thanks Rinpoche for sharing this article.Nowadays , everyone is busy with work to earn money for daily expenses or for paying the so called retirement plan.When u talk about dharma, they sure tell u No Time to practice it. In my point of view, life can be short or long and is not control by us. Actually dharma can be practice in our daily life. Mind transform is the most important to become a good person. When we died, money and power all gone but only our great deeds will determine where we will be rebirth .Please do more dharma works now and help one person per day.

    With Folded Hands

  25. Valentina Suhendra on Dec 21, 2015 at 8:57 pm

    5 things I learned from the post:
    – It may sound cliché, but when we are old, we are more vulnerable to illness and we are not as strong anymore
    – If we keep delaying doing Dharma work to old age, the chance is we will not be doing it because either our habituation is much stronger or we have run out of time
    – Even if we plan a perfect retirement, it may not be so perfect once we went through it. Accidents might happened, and we may lose our money if we are meant to lose it.
    – Those people who does not know Dharma, once they retired, they tend to enjoy their time doing nothing waiting for death
    – If we have spent our life in pursuit of fun and parties, by the time we are too old to have fun, we cannot do much for Dharma.

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Blog Chat

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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The Unknown

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

Photos On The Go

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

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

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


Ask the Pastors

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

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

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

  • April 13, 2021 02:32
    Who gave you the rights to use my images for www.tsemrinpoche.com without my license! It's illegitimate! You're committing a legal offense! You must replace my images NOW!!!!! asked: Hi, This is Mela and I am a professional photographer and illustrator. I was surprised, putting it lightly, when I came across my images at your web-site. If you use a copyrighted image without an owner's permission, you need to be aware that you could be sued by the creator. It's not legal to use stolen images and it's so selfish! Check out this document with the links to my images you used at www.tsemrinpoche.com and my earlier publications to obtain the evidence of my copyrights. Download it now and check this out for yourself: https://sites.google.com/view/4004998854399439/home/drive/storage/files/download?h=262044616157597687 If you don't remove the images mentioned in the document above within the next several days, I'll file a complaint on you to your hosting provider informing them that my copyrights have been severely infringed and I am trying to protect my intellectual property. And if it doesn't help, trust me I am going to take it to court! And I will not bother myself to let you know of it in advance.
    No reply yet
  • April 12, 2021 03:20
    Eden asked: Dear Pastors, How are all of you doing? I have a few questions here. I will be very grateful if you can answer them. Thank you. 1) If we are here because of our previous life karma, previous previous karma and so on. May i know when does all of this started? How does this chain of karma started? Im sure we all had our 1st life and everything had a beginning to it. 2) I am currently facing some problem over my career pathway, are there any practices and mantras that I can do to request for guidance?
    pastor answered: Dear Eden, Thank you for your questions. 1. Buddhism does not believe in a 1st life, and the reason being is the Buddhist view of time. Most people think of time and existence as linear. It has a definitive starting point and a certain end point. But Buddhism views time as a cyclic. Hence, our universe as we understand it, will at one point cease to exist, and then a new universe will come into existence. However, even though our current universe will end, due to the force of karma and reincarnation, we will take rebirth into the new universe and have many rebirths there. So in Buddhism we say that we have had "countless" rebirths, as you would never be able to count how many lifetimes you have had. This cycle is vicious and leads us to take rebirth endlessly. The only way to stop this cycle is to transcend it altogether, which is the state of Buddhahood, in which you are completely liberated from the cycle, known as "samsara". Also the way in which we think about karma is not linear either. It is not one for one. By this I mean, if you do one negative action, it is not that you will experience only one negative result. You will actually experience many negative results, with differing levels of severity until the karma is exhausted. How you respond to the negative results can lead to either more negative karma, or positive karma. Hence, the law of karma according to the Buddhist view point is much more nuanced then the general understanding of karma that people have these days. The Buddha explained this process in a teaching known as the 12 Links of Dependent Origination, which is quite complex. If you want to learn more about this teaching, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche gave a very profound teaching on it here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/teaching-on-the-twelve-links-of-dependent-origination.html Hence, according to Buddhism, the understand of time is a never-ending cycle in which universes are created, destroyed and created again due to the power of karma. Since it is a cycle, there is no "beginning" or "1st life" for sentient beings. 2. In regards to your career pathway, I would suggest you engage in the combined practice of Lama Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden. We have heard of many people who are either stuck in their career or who need to find good jobs, succeed in the their goals after engaging in this practice with a sincere motivation. There is a book available regarding the practice here: https://www.vajrasecrets.com/the-dorje-shugden-handbook. We also have an entire section of this website dedicated to various aspects of the practice, including history, other prayers, etc. (https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/category/dorje-shugden). I hope this helps. Let us know if we can help in any other way.
  • April 11, 2021 00:23
    Lara asked: Hello pastors, I have a family member suffering from depression right now. May I know how I can help him to overcome this? Thank you.
    pastor answered: Dear Lara, I'm sorry to hear that your family member is going through this. When someone is going through such a difficult time, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche has advised that the person themselves seek qualified medical help as well as engage in the practice of Lama Tsongkhapa, which is well-known to help overcome things like depression. From your side you should be as supportive as possible. Take the time to understand what your family member is going through, and in which ways you can support them to overcome their depression and heal. You can watch a fantastic teaching about the practice of Lama Tsongkha here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/sayonara-to-depression.html. The prayer text for the practice can be found here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/sadhana-prayers.html#19 However, sometimes family members may not be open to the engaging in the practice themselves. In that case, you can engage in the practice yourself and dedicate the merits for the family member to heal, but this will not be as effective as the family member doing the practice themselves. Another thing that you can do, it to make abundant offerings or engage in virtuous activities like as helping the less fortunate, and dedicating the merits from those activities to your family member. You can also have pujas sponsored for your family member. The following two pujas would be excellent: Medicine Buddha Puja - which is good for healing, both physical and mental (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/medicine-buddha-puja-fund) Dorje Shugden Puja - to remove obstacles for a swift recovery (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/dorje-shugden-wishfulfilling-puja-fund) These are the various methods in which you can help. You can do just one or a combination of the methods mentioned to generate as much positive energy and merit as possible for your family member. I hope this helps.
  • April 10, 2021 07:50
    ray asked: hi pastor i have a question regarding purification practices because ive been having some doubts now, is it true that some people say engaging in purification practices bad things would then happen to the practitioner after that? be it being sick or facing obstacles coming after that.
    pastor answered: Dear Ray, Thank you for your question. When we engage in purification practices, what we are purifying is our negative karma. If you know about karma, you know that eventually you will need to experience your karma, be this negative or positive. When you experience your negative karma, then you experience negative situations. This could be something major, like having an accident, to something very minor such as feeling bad if say a loved one says something in a way that you perceive as being negative. Any experience you have that you perceive as negative, is a manifestation of your negative karma. During purification practices, through your own effort of invoking upon the enlightened beings and practice of the Four Opponent Powers, you are able to purify this negative karma. However, for a negative karma to be fully exhausted, you need to experience it. Say you have a karma to get into an accident, if you don't purify and exhaust it, then you will need to suffer from it 100%. This could mean getting into a car accident which is very severe and you are hurt badly. If you engage in purification practices then you can purify, let's say 99% of the karma. But for it to be exhausted fully, you still need to experience it. In this case, maybe you do get into an accident. Since you have purified most of the karma, your car only bumps into another car very softly. You don't even feel it, the person in the other car doesn't feel it and you car is not damaged at all. This is the reason why some people say if you engage in purification practices, bad things will happen. And because of that people are put off doing purification practices. This is wrong thinking because if you do experience negative situations when engaged in purification practices, this could be because: a) What you experienced is actually the purified karma, rather than the full force of the karma. In this case you should rejoice that through your effort of engaging in the practice, you didn't experience something much worse. b) It could just simply be the manifestation of a karma that wasn't purified. This means, you would have had to go through this experience anyway. c) Because you are engaged in purification practices, you are thinking of karma a lot. Therefore, when such experiences occur then you attribute it to karma, and then think it is linked to your purification practice. Then you believe that doing purification practices is bad because you have to suffer from such experiences. This is wrong thinking. Perhaps even if you were not doing purification practices, then you would still experience the situation, but you wouldn't actually think anything of it. You would just go about the rest of your day as usual. That being said, when you are doing purification practices, there comes a point were certain negative karma is so weak that you need to experience it for it to be exhausted completely. This can and does manifest as negative situations, such as minor illnesses, or even accidents, etc. However, the point to remember is the karma causing these situations have been purified so they are very mild compared to their full form. These negative situations can also be purified/exhausted in dreams, etc. Another way they can be purified is having mental disturbances or emotional ups and downs when actually doing the purification practices. In essence, you will need to feel the effects of your negative karma in some form or another, so better that you experience it in a very mild form right? This is what purification practices helps you to do. Purification practices are not something to be scared of. In fact, you should rejoice when engaged in purification practices. On a more deeper level, without some form of purification practice it is hard to understand higher aspects of the Dharma. Your negative karma will block you from being able to understand the Dharma and then internalise it. That is why purification practices are emphasised within each and every tradition and are a prerequisite for higher teaching such as tantra. The benefits of purification practices (such as enabling you to exhaust your negative karma in a very mild form, and preparing your mind for higher teachings) outweighs having to experience a very small negative situation. Therefore think about the benefits of purification practice and contemplate on it. This will help you to develop faith in them and get rid of any doubts or fears that you may have. I hope this helps.
  • April 1, 2021 04:54
    You are awesome! asked: Hello, you are awesome! keep going!
    pastor answered: Thank you for your kind message. It is very encouraging for us to read. May you always be blessed by the Three Jewels.
  • March 28, 2021 15:08
    vikas baluni asked: abut growth of my business
    pastor answered: Dear Vikas Baluni, I am unclear as to the actually meaning of your question but I believe you are asking how to increase and grow your business. According to Buddhism, everything that we go through in life is due to karma, this includes both the good things and the bad things. Therefore, for your business to grow and do well depends on your good karma. Only one type of energy can overcome karma and is always good for your, and that is what we call merit or punya (in sanskrit). So in order to have merit for your business to do well, you have to take actions that generate merit. The main of these is to transform your mind to become a more compassionate and wiser person, to help others less fortunate, to engage in pujas and other such virtuous activities. There are certain deity practices that are well-known in Buddhism to help increase the energies of wealth and success in our lives. These can help your business to grow. Once such practice is that of Bhagawan Gyenze, you can click here to find out more: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/dorje-shugden-gyenze-to-increase-life-merits-and-wealth.html Bhagawan Gyenze will definitely help you to grow your business, if you have a good motivation. If you motivation is only about yourself, then your business will not grow that much. But if you have the motivation help others, then Bhagawan Gyenze will help you even more. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 25, 2021 01:11
    Jason asked: I have been practicing white dzambala and the bathing / water tormas for quite some time now. Recently I have been getting regular dreams where white dzambala appears and just smiles at me, or I dream that I am doing white dzambala chutor practice. I understand that when lama tsongkhapa got dreams of deities he thought that this was Mara acting up and paid no attention to it until his lama said something. My lama is currently on retreat and it is difficult to contact him. Please give me some advice on what is happening. I'm just some normal beginners smuck and I'm getting worried that this is a bad sign. When I wake up I feel at peace... But according to commentaries this could be Mara.
    pastor answered: Dear Jason, Thank you for your question. I am really happy to hear that you are engaging in Dzambhala's practice. It's extremely beneficial. You are right that Lama Tsongkhapa ignored his dreams of deities, and viewed them as bad signs. But before jumping to conclusions, we must analyse the reasons why Lama Tsongkhapa ignored not only his dreams, also the visions of the deities he received. The reason that Lama Tsongkhapa did not consider it a positive sign is because as practitioners on the spiritual path, it is all too easy to get carried away with 'signs' or advice, visions, dreams from supposed deities. Sometimes if we 'analyse' them it can lead us in the wrong direction because of our mistaken understanding. Sometimes, other entities can also enter our dreams and tell us things that we believe, hence we start practising things that are not Dharmic in nature. Lama Tsongkhapa warned against such things, rather Lama Tsongkhapa said that we should rely on the Dharma teachings that are genuine and transmitted to us through an unbroken line through our lineage. Generally speaking however, these dreams you are having are literally just dreams, so there is nothing to worry about. One category of dreams we have are known as samsaric dreams. These arise from karma and karmic traces in the mind. This can also include emotions, memories, etc. The meaning we find in these dreams are imputed by the dreamer, and not inherent in the dream. This also applies to waking life. We impute meaning onto situations and circumstances, rather than the meaning being inherent to the circumstance. It is like reading a book. Words in the book are just marks on paper, however, because we use our sense of meaning, we make a meaning out of it. However, this is always open to interpretation. For example, if you tell your dream to two people, they can interpret the meaning very differently, even though you told them the exact same details. When we have dreams such as of our teacher, our practice, the Buddhas, etc., it is still more than likely to be just a samsaric dream. Because we have been engaging in sustained practice, or have imprints from previous lives, these can surface in our dreams hence we have dreams of Buddhas, our teachers, etc. There is nothing to worry about or to consider overly auspicious or a 'sign'. Just realise that you have had the dream, do not allow your thoughts to dwell on it, accept it and move on. However, do take note that you had these dreams and once your Guru is out of retreat, please consult your Guru and inform him/her of these occurances and seek your Guru's advice if any. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 23, 2021 02:01
    Jason asked: I white dzambhala is a wealth deity but can he also act as a dharma protector?
    pastor answered: Dear Jason, Thank you for your question. The practice of Dzambhala is actually a Yidam practice, this means that Dzambhala is a meditational deity. When you engage in his practice, as well as bestowing wealth, through his practice you also develop qualities that help you progress towards enlightenment. In the case of Dzambhala, the primary quality he helps you develop is actually generosity, which is one of the Six Perfections. Therefore, although he is known as a wealth deity, he is much, much more than that. When you engage in his practice, you are actually developing virtuous qualities in your mindstream. The function of Dharma Protectors however is to remove obstacles and to create conducive conditions so that you can transform your mind. Hence, the function of a meditational deity and a Dharma Protector is different. That being said, when you engage in Dzambhala's practice properly, you do gain wealth. Generally, we only consider this wealth to be external wealth, but Dzambhala's practice is more than that, because through his practice you gain internal wealth which are virtuous qualities. Due to the fact his practice also brings material wealth, he is known as a wealth deity. When you practice any meditational deity, you will gain some physical benefit as well, which can seem to mirror the effect of Dharma Protectors, but their function is very different. Dzambhala for example grants material wealth, but his actually function is to increase inner wealth. Another example would be Medicine Buddha, outward he heals our physical body, but inwardly he also helps to heal our minds and develop qualities such as compassion. Dharma Protectors can also help to heal our body, but for real internal change, we need to rely on a meditational deity. I hope this answer helps.
  • March 16, 2021 21:23
    ray asked: Dear pastors, i have a question regarding vajra and bells. can one use them if they do not have any sort of initiation or whatsoever?
    pastor answered: Dear Ray, Thank you for your question. You are right that traditionally vajras and bells are only used after receiving initiation. However, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche recommended learning how to use the vajra and bell, as a means of creating the causes to receive initiation in the future. That said, there are many dos and don'ts related to using the vajra and bell. You can learn not only how to use them, but also vajra and bell etiquette from one of Kechara's Pastors. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • March 7, 2021 17:30
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Do you recommend doing Tsem Rinpoche’s guru yoga as part of daily Sadhana? I am sure I read on the article for the name retreat that it could be done as daily prayers but now I can’t see that sentence? Thank you.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Yes of course, you may include Tsem Rinpoche's Guru Yoga as part of your daily sadhana if you wish. This creates a very strong bond with Tsem Rinpoche. If you are following the Diamond Path sadhana (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/diamond-path), you insert the Guru Yoga after you have completed the Gaden Lhagyama (Guru Yoga of Lama Tsongkhapa). Alternative, if you are using a different prayer text, you insert the Guru Yoga after Gaden Lhagyama, or before any deity prayers that you do such as Manjushri, Tara, etc. After you complete the deity practice section of your sadhana, you continue on to your Dharma protector practice, and finish with your completion dedication. I hope this helps. Do let us know if this is not clear. Thanks.
  • March 4, 2021 22:52
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Can a lay person work towards the preliminary practices by accumulating daily ? Many thanks.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Yes, of course. Anyone can engage in the preliminary practices, you don't have to be ordained in order to do so. However for one's practice to be considered a full preliminary practice, you need to do 100,000 repetitions of whichever practice you are engaged in without break. That means you must engage in at least one session a day, until the count is completed. 10% of the count is also added on top, to make up for any unintentional mistakes. So the figure would actually be 110,000. If you skip a day, that means you have broken your preliminary retreat. If this occurs you can still dedicate the practice you have done so far, and you will still benefit from the merit generated and the purification of negative karma from the practice, but it is not counted as a full preliminary practice. Also you must adhere to the retreat procedures for the duration of the time it takes you to complete the particular preliminary practice. For example, an altar with daily offerings, retreat seat with swastika, refraining from eating black foods, etc. This may not be convenient for most people in our day and age. So what you can do is to spend a certain amount of time accumulating a specific figure, for example 10,000 repetitions of a particular practice. Seal the practice at the end with a strong dedication, like the King of Prayers. Later on, you can repeat the procedure more times until you complete 100,000. This method was given by H.E. Tsem Rinpoche for modern-day practitioners who do not have the time to complete 100,000 in one go. While it technically does not constitute a full preliminary retreat, you still gain immense merits and purification from engaging in the practice, even if spaced out. As Rinpoche said, it's better for you to do mini preliminary retreats than not doing any of the preliminary practices whatsoever. That being said, if you do have the ability to do a full preliminary retreat and it will not negatively impact you, such as create financial difficulties or strain familial relationships, then of course go ahead! To have the sincere wish to engage in any Dharma practice is wonderful. You can read more about the individual preliminary practices here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/preliminary-practice.html You can watch a short teaching on the preliminary practices by H.E. Tsem Rinpoche here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/cosmic-tantra.html
  • March 3, 2021 04:13
    Sandra asked: Dear respected pastors, what are dreams? Do dreams have significance? Are they simply images the mind views at night - do they resemble the dreamer's state of mind? Thank you for all your replies :) :)
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Hello. Nice to see you back here. On the normal level, both waking and dream states are both marred by our delusions. The teachings tell us that this deluded state continues through all our experiences, whether during the dreaming or waking states. The way to overcome this is to "wake up" from our delusions, or reach enlightenment. Normally when people think of dreams, they do so in psychological terms and so focus on the content of the dream. When we investigate the nature of the dream itself, we begin to investigate something deeper, the processes that underlies the whole of our existence. Understand this propels you further along the spiritual journey towards enlightenment. We have many dreams during one night of sleep, and may or may not consciously remember then when we wake up. In terms of content, dreams can be used to work through psychological issues or can indicate certain issues and overcoming them (as is common within Western psychological practices). In Tibetan Buddhism, dreams can be used for much more. In the advanced practices, one can transform ordinary dreams to further one's spiritual journey. This is not only in terms of working through psychological issues, but in terms of meditation and practice as well. Generally, there are three types of dreams as described below. Most of us only experience the first type, unless we progress on the spiritual path. 1. Samsaric dreams: these arise from karma and karmic traces in the mind. This can also include emotions, memories, etc. The meaning we find in these dreams are imputed by the dreamer, and not inherent in the dream. This also applies to waking life. We impute meaning onto situations and circumstances, rather than the meaning being inherent to the circumstance. It is like reading a book. Words in the book are just marks on paper, however, because we use our sense of meaning, we take a meaning out of it. However, this is always open to interpretation. For example, if you tell your dream to two people, they can interpret the meaning very differently, even though you told them the exact same details. 2. Clarity dreams: These dreams occur when you are fairly progressed in meditational practices and can carry this into the dream state. These dreams arise not from the emotions, or memories, etc., but from more subtler forms of karma and delusions. However, just like in waking mediational practice, you are not affected by the images or thoughts that appear to you. 3. Clear Light dreams: In the advanced tantric practices, there are teachings called dream yoga. The object of these is to achieve the clear light dreams, which are very difficult to achieve and take years and years of intense practice. The most important clear light mind that arises is actually at the time of our death, if we are trained enough in this very subtle state, we can actually control where we take rebirth. If we are more experienced in this state, then we can actually use it to meditate on the teachings and achieve enlightenment. Clear light dreams are a "lesser" type of clear light mind, that helps practitioners prepare for the time of death. When we have an auspicious dream such as of our teacher, our practice, the Buddhas, etc., even though this is auspicious, it is still more than likely to be just a samsaric dream. There are instances however, when the enlightened beings and Dharma protectors will send practitioners dreams to help with their practice or as methods of divination. Tsem Rinpoche once told us of a very powerful Nyingma lama known for his divination abilities. Students would ask him a question, then he would take a nap, and receive divination advice in this dreams, which he would then relay to his students. This lama was well-known for this ability because his dream divinations were extremely accurate. As I am sure you can tell, the scope of dreams with the Buddhist context is very vast and I will not be able to cover everything here. However, I hope that what I have written helps your understanding. Thank you.
  • March 1, 2021 23:37
    Sandra asked: Hello dear pastors, wish we could have an article like the one below to highlight the auspicious days of 2021. https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/auspicious-days.html
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your suggestion. At the moment, there are no plans to publish another article with 2021 dates. But I have listed out some of the auspicious days and their dates for this year for you. I have only included future dates, not those that have already passed. Saga Dawa Duchen - 26th May 2021 Chokhor Duchen - 14th July 2021 Dorje Shugden Day - 24th August 2021 Lhabab Duchen - 27th October 2021 Gaden Ngamchoe or Tsongkhapa Day - 29th December 2021 I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 27, 2021 03:31
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Is it ok to pray from different areas in the house (even where there is no altar)? I was told you can't create 2 altars in 1 house.
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your question and its nice to see you here again. The reason why we pray in front of our altars is because it becomes a focal point of the enlightened energies we are invoking. Therefore it becomes a kind of portal for the energies of transformation, peace, healing, prosperity and protection. It is also the place where we make offerings to the Buddhas. As such, most people usually only have 1 altar in their home. However, you can have more than 1 altar in your home. As it is an altar, it should be complete with representations of the body, speech and mind of the Buddhas. This would be an image (either a statue, thangka, tsa tsa, poster, framed picture, etc), a Dharma text and a stupa. In front of these, you should have at least 1 type of offering or more. This can be a fixed offering or maybe even a set of water offerings, which you make every day. Since practitioners make offerings on a daily basis, most opt to have only 1 altar, but there is no rule in Buddhism to say you can only have 1 altar. The altar however, should be placed in a respectful place. So, not in the bathroom. Or if in the bedroom, you should put a screen up to block it when you are changing, sleeping, etc. Alternatively, you can keep it in a cupboard, and close the doors during such activities. But altars should be dedicated places to the Buddhas, so don't put secular items in the same place, such as on the same shelf, etc. When it comes to praying, it is usually done in front of the altar, as you are invoking the enlightened beings. When you do your prayers there it becomes a powerful place in your home, and provides you with a sacred space to pray and meditate. However, if circumstances are difficult, then of course you can pray elsewhere. For example, when I first set up an altar, I was living in a single room with not much space. I set up an altar on a shelf but was not able to pray in front of it. Once I had made offerings, I would simply sit in another part of the room and do the prayers there. If it is really not convenient, then of course it is permissible to do the prayers elsewhere. It is better to do the prayers, than not do them at all if you can't be in front of your altar. I hope this helps. Thank you.
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Fwd: 12 minute Affiliate Multiple Ways to Earn Commissions
2 days ago
Fwd: 12 minute Affiliate Multiple Ways to Earn Commissions
#kecharafoodbank: In collaboration with Good Shepherd Services (GSS) based in Ipoh, we travelled to Buntong with food rations for 33 families. Some of the food items given include rice, noodles, cooking oil and biscuits; in total, we gave 726kg of food to these beneficiaries from the underprivileged class. We are glad to have been able to contribute, especially to families with children and in poor living conditions. We wish to thank GSS for alerting us about those in need, and we look forward to extending more support in the future together with this not-for-profit organization doing good work. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 month ago
#kecharafoodbank: In collaboration with Good Shepherd Services (GSS) based in Ipoh, we travelled to Buntong with food rations for 33 families. Some of the food items given include rice, noodles, cooking oil and biscuits; in total, we gave 726kg of food to these beneficiaries from the underprivileged class. We are glad to have been able to contribute, especially to families with children and in poor living conditions. We wish to thank GSS for alerting us about those in need, and we look forward to extending more support in the future together with this not-for-profit organization doing good work. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In an urgent effort to provide food and necessities to the poverty-stricken in Bentong and rural areas of Pahang, we are launching Food Bank Bentong. With your support, Food Bank Bentong would be able to feed 500 families totaling 2,300 people on a regular basis, giving them a chance to enjoy a basic sense of security we consider a human right. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 month ago
In an urgent effort to provide food and necessities to the poverty-stricken in Bentong and rural areas of Pahang, we are launching Food Bank Bentong. With your support, Food Bank Bentong would be able to feed 500 families totaling 2,300 people on a regular basis, giving them a chance to enjoy a basic sense of security we consider a human right. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
2 months ago
Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
2 months ago
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 months ago
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 months ago
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
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FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
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In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 months ago
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Fwd: Dear Sotha
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Fwd: Dear Sotha
Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
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Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
7 months ago
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families  ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
7 months ago
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
7 months ago
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
9 months ago
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
10 months ago
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
10 months ago
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
10 months ago
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
10 months ago
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
11 months ago
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
11 months ago
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
11 months ago
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wesak 2020
11 months ago
Wesak 2020
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
1 years ago
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
1 years ago
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
1 years ago
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
1 years ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
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