Paul Robeson: The Beacon of Hope for the Oppressed

Apr 6, 2019 | Views: 728

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Paul Leroy Robeson (1898–1976) was a famous Hollywood actor, bass-baritone singer and stage performer who not only contributed to the entertainment industry, but also, as a political activist to the Civil Rights Movement and sociocultural movements around the world.

Robeson was a well-educated man. He earned an athletic scholarship at Rutgers University and continued his studies at Columbia University. Being curious about his roots and the rich African culture, he went to London to the School of Oriental and African Studies to learn the Swahili language.

Paul Robeson as the varsity catcher

Paul Robeson as the varsity catcher

After completing his studies, Robeson pursued acting and singing where he achieved fame and success. Subsequently, he became involved in political activism, which adversely affected his career. Today, Robeson is remembered as the first African American actor who achieved international prominence, a symbol of African American dignity, and a spokesperson for the oppressed.

The scene on Show Boat (1936) where Paul Robeson gave his legendary performance, “Ol” Man River

The scene from the “Show Boat” (1936) where Paul Robeson gave his legendary performance, “Ol” Man River

 

The Early Years

Paul Robeson’s parents, William Drew Robeson (Left) and Maria Louisa Bustill (right)

Paul Robeson’s parents, William Drew Robeson (left) and Maria Louisa Bustill (right)

Paul Robeson was born in Princeton, New Jersey on April 9, 1898. His mother, Maria Louisa Bustill, was a lady who came from a prominent Quaker family, and his father, William Drew Robeson, was a Presbyterian Church Minister at Witherspoon Street. Robeson had one sister, Marian, and three brothers, William Drew Jr, Reeve, and Ben.

St. Thomas A.M.E Zion Church

St. Thomas A.M.E Zion Church
(click to enlarge)

His father, William, had an interesting past. He was born into slavery but managed to escape from a plantation that owned him in his teens. In 1901, William resigned from his position in the Presbyterian Church due to racially charged conflict with the Witherspoon white financial supporters.

After he lost his ministerial position, William worked menial jobs to support his family. In 1904, Maria died in a tragic house fire accident. Robeson was only six years old. As the family’s financial condition worsened, they had to move to a shop’s attic in Westfield, New Jersey.

Fortune started to shine on the Robeson family when William secured a position at St. Thomas A.M.E. Zion Church in 1910 and a proper residence for his family. Paul would sometimes replace his father during sermons whenever he was not available.

Summerville High School

Somerville High School

Robeson attended Somerville High School in 1912. He excelled not only in his studies, but also music, sports, and performing arts. He participated in the school’s chorus and drama productions, “Julius Caesar” and “Othello”, and made a mark in track, baseball, basketball, and football. Robeson ignored any hints of racial discrimination and continued to accumulate academic achievements. Before his high school graduation, he won a statewide academic contest and secured a scholarship to Rutgers University.

A picture of Paul Robeson with the Somerville High School Football Team 1913

A picture of Paul Robeson with the Somerville High School Football Team in 1913

To earn extra income, Robeson took a job as a waiter at Narragansett Pier in Rhode Island. It was here that he became acquainted with Fritz Pollard who would later be the first African American coach in the National Football League.

 

The Rutgers Years

Winants Hall on the Rutgers campus as it looked prior to 1920. This building served as a dormitory for many Rutgers students, including Paul Robeson. In contrast to other Rutgers students, Robeson was not allowed to share room in Winants Hall.

Winants Hall on the Rutgers campus as it looked prior to 1920. This building served as a dormitory for many Rutgers students, including Paul Robeson.

Robeson enrolled at Rutgers University in 1915. He was the only African-American student at the time and the third to be enrolled at the university since its establishment. It was a challenging period for him being a person of colour.

During the tryout for the Rutgers Scarlett Knights Football team, Robeson was sorely tested and ended up with a broken nose and a dislocated shoulder. Seeing his determination, the coach, Foster Sanford, finally announced that he made the cut. In addition to the football team, Robeson joined the debate team and the Glee Club. He also earned pocket money by singing off-campus.

Paul Robeson in the Rutgers Football Team)

Paul Robeson with the Rutgers Football Team

In his sophomore year, Robeson’s skin colour adversely affected a football match, where a Southern American team refused to play with a black man on the field. He was subsequently benched. However, after a standout junior year of football, Robeson was recognised in “The Crisis”, the official magazine for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), for his academic, athletic, and singing talents.

It was around this time, his father fell ill and passed away. At the same time, Robeson was starting to question why African Americans were not given the same opportunities as white people despite the fact that they too fought for America in World War I.

Paul Robeson was a member of Cap and Skull, a senior-year honour society at Rutgers College

Paul Robeson was a member of Cap and Skull, an honour society at Rutgers University

Robeson graduated from Rutgers with honours. He had four annual oratorical triumphs and varsity letters for his athletic achievements under his belt. He was admitted into Phi Beta Kappa, the oldest national honour society, and Cap and Skull, Rutgers University honour society.

“The Daily Targum”, Rutgers official magazine, also featured Robeson’s achievements in the form of a poem. He was elected school valedictorian and in his farewell speech, he encouraged his classmates to work for the equality of all Americans.

 

Columbia Law School

Paul Robeson and his wife, Eslanda Goode

Paul Robeson and his wife, Essie Goode (click to enlarge)

After graduating from Rutgers, Robeson enrolled at New York University (NYU) School of Law in autumn 1919. To support himself through law school, he worked as an assistant football coach. Unfortunately, that was short-lived. He felt that NYU was not for him, and he moved to Harlem. Within less than a year, in February 1920, he transferred his academic credits to Columbia Law School. Robeson was well-known within the African American community for his powerful voice and was asked to perform at the dedication of Harlem YWCA. He was also recruited to play for the National Football League’s (NFL) Akron Pros.

During this time, Robeson also met and developed a relationship with his fellow schoolmate at Columbia, Eslanda “Essie” Goode, who encouraged Robeson to make his theatrical debut in Ridgely Torrence’s “Simon of Cyrene” where he played the lead role of Simon. He also took a short break from his study to play in Mary Hoyt Wilborg’s play, “Taboo” in Britain and sang in the off-Broadway musical production, “Shuffle Along”.

After one year of courtship, Robeson and Essie were married in August 1921. To support his new family, Robeson played professional football and gave Latin courses. He stopped playing football in 1922 and graduated from Columbia Law School in 1923.

Paul Robeson and the graduation class of 1923 at Columbia Law School

Paul Robeson and the graduation class of 1923 at Columbia Law School

 

Artistic Endeavours and Fame

After his graduation, Robeson had a short career stint at a law firm. However, he experienced racial discrimination at his workplace, and with his wife’s encouragement, he decided to pursue a career as an actor instead. Essie gave up her aspiration to study medicine and took on the role as her husband’s business manager and launched his acting career while working in the hospital to support herself and her husband.

“Even then, I never meant to [become an actor]. I just said yes to get her to quit pestering me.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: Wikipedia.org

Robeson landed a role in a controversial play, Eugene O’Neill’s “All God’s Chillun Got Wings”, about an African American man married to a white abusive woman who resented her husband’s skin colour and destroyed his promising law career. Due to the play’s controversy, the premiere was delayed. Taking the opportunity from this delay, Robeson landed a 90-minute monologue role as Brutus Jones in “The Emperor Jones” revival, which won him critical acclaim and recognition.

Paul Robeson in the film The Emperor Jones (1933)

Paul Robeson in the film “The Emperor Jones” (1933)

In 1925, Essie quit her job at the hospital and negotiated a silent film role, “Body and Soul”, for her husband. Robeson also participated in a charity concert to support single mothers and performed his repertoire on radio shows. Around this time, he became acquainted with a pianist named Lawrence Brown, and the two held a captivating concert of African American folk songs and spirituals at Provincetown Playhouse. After this concert, Robeson won a contract with Victor Records. Robeson’s and Brown’s musical collaboration continued, and they embarked on a one and half year concert tour across the United States from January 1926 to May 1927.

Lawrence Brown and Paul Robeson rehearsing at the piano

Lawrence Brown and Paul Robeson during a rehearsal session
(click to enlarge)

While Robeson and Brown were performing in Europe in November 1927, Essie gave birth to Paul Robeson Jr. However, she experienced childbirth-related complications, and her health quickly deteriorated. Despite Essie’s protest, her mother informed Robeson of her condition, and he rushed home to be with his wife. Several months later, Essie recovered.

In 1928, Robeson landed the role of “Joe” in the widely successful musical “Show Boat” at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London. His performance on one of the songs, “Ol’ Man River” was legendary. The “Show Boat” ran for 350 performances and was considered as one of Theatre Royal’s most profitable show. While in London, he had the opportunity to perform at Buckingham Palace and became acquainted with the Members of Parliament from the House of Commons.

 

Ah Still Suit Me (Show Boat)

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CKsPRIpYKc
 

Following their success, the Robesons bought a house in Hampstead, an area famous for intellectual, artistic, liberal, musical and literary associations. They became a common feature in the high society, went on holidays in the French Riviera and mingled with the likes of Gertrude Stein, an American novelist and playwright, and Claude McKay, a Jamaican novelist.

Although he was more fortunate than many African Americans of his day, a racially charged treatment at the Savoy where he was refused a seat prompted him to issue a press release about this unpleasant experience and insult. Regardless of the racial discrimination he received from time to time, he was grateful for his success and attributed them to God.

“God watches over me and guides me. He’s with me and lets me fight my own battles and hopes I’ll win.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: Duberman, Martin, “Paul Robeson: A Biography” The New Press, p. 220

 

Marriage Crisis

Peggy Ashcroft as Desdemona and Paul Robeson as Othello in Shakespeare’s Othello

Peggy Ashcroft as Desdemona and Paul Robeson as Othello in Shakespeare’s “Othello”

Early in her marriage, Essie realised that her husband was a womanizer and tolerated her husband’s dalliances. However, over time she found it hard to contain her resentment of his illicit affairs.

In 1930, after appearing in the experimental Swiss film “Borderline”, Robeson played the lead in Shakespeare’s “Othello” opposite a famous English actress, Peggy Ashcroft, who played the role of Desdemona. The play was historical because Robeson was the first African American to play “Othello” in Britain since Ira Aldridge.

He understood what it meant to play “Othello” for a black man like him and stated that the best way to diminish the oppression African Americans faced, was for his artistic work to be an example of what “men of colour” could accomplish rather than to

“be a propagandist and make speeches and write articles about what they call the Colour Question.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: Kinni, Fongot Kini-Yen, “Pan-Africanism: Political Philosophy and Socio-economic Anthropology for African Liberation and Governance : Caribbean and African American Contributions”, Langaa RPCIG, Page 201

Paul Robeson and Peggy Ashcroft’s two years affair ended Paul Robeson’s marriage to Essie

Paul Robeson and Peggy Ashcroft

During the play, Robeson and Ashcroft became attracted to each other and this led to an affair. Much hurt by this, Essie sought for a divorce. The affair lasted for two years until 1932, after which Robeson and Essie reconciled.

Paul Robeson and Eslanda Goode with their son Paul Robeson Jr.

Paul Robeson and Essie Goode with their son, Paul Robeson Jr.

 

Returning to his African Roots

Paul Robeson in the Sanders of the River (1935)

Paul Robeson in the “Sanders of the River” (1935)

In the 1930s, Robeson started to embrace his African heritage. In 1933, he went to London and played Jim in Chillun, free of charge. When he returned to the United States, he took the lead role of “Brutus” in “The Emperor Jones”. During this time, Robeson was very sensitive to the slightest actions that he perceived as degrading to his African American root.

Movie poster advertising the Belgian release of the film 'Sanders of the River’ where Paul Robeson played the role of Bosambo

Movie poster advertising the Belgian release of the film “Sanders of the River” where Paul Robeson played the role of Bosambo (click to enlarge)

When he went back to Britain, he complained to the media that the African Americans in the United States have rejected their culture and that he does not want to be associated with European opera as it has no connection with his culture. His controversial comments invited negative reactions from the American press. The New York Amsterdam News sarcastically remarked that Robeson made a fool of himself.

To enhance his knowledge on the African culture, Robeson enrolled at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies to learn about Swahili and other African languages in 1934. He also wrote about his preference for his ancestry in his essay titled “I Want to be African”.

His fondness for the African culture is also reflected in his choice of acting roles. He took part in “Sanders of the River” (1935) as Bosambo because he felt that the movie gave a realistic portrayal of the African colonial culture. However, this enthusiasm soon turned sour when during the retake of some scenes he found out that the message of the movie had been changed to support imperialism.

“The imperialist plot had been placed in the plot during the last five days of the shooting. I was roped into the picture because I wanted to portray the culture of the African people and I committed a faux pas which convinced me that I had failed to weigh the problems of 150,000,000 native Africans. I hate the picture.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: https://www.indiewire.com

Since then, Robeson became more conscious of his choice of role. Regardless of his comment, “Sanders of the River” became a box office hit, and Robeson became an international superstar.

Sergei Mikhailovich Eisenstein (1898-1948)

Sergei Mikhailovich Eisenstein (1898-1948) (click to enlarge)

In December 1934, Sergei Eisenstein, a Soviet film director invited Robeson, Essie and another actress, Marie Seton to the Soviet Union. Robeson was very impressed, “Here I am not a Negro but a human being for the first time in my life. I walk in full human dignity.” So impressed was he with the treatment he received in the Soviet Union, Robeson decided to send his only son to continue his education in the Soviet Union to protect him from racism in early 1936.

His preference for niche roles did not seem to affect his popularity. He participated in a play about solidarity during labour strike titled “Stevedore”. The play received positive reviews from Nancy Cunard of “The Crisis”,

“’Stevedore’ is extremely valuable in the racial-social question – it is straight from the shoulder.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: Cunnard, Nancy, “Stevedore in London”, “The Crisis”, 1935, page 238

After “Stevedore”, Robeson continued to entertain in various stage and screen roles. He was involved in the “Song of Freedom”, “Show Boat”, “My Song Goes Forth”, “King Solomon’s Mines”, and as a narrator in the “Big Fella” documentary. The year 1938 seemed to be the pinnacle of his career when Robeson was named as the 10th most popular star in British cinema by American Motion Picture Herald.

 

The Start of his Political Activism (1937-1939)

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The struggle between Democracy and Fascism in the Spanish Civil War affected Robeson whereby he decided to be a political activist that advocated the war’s refugees and the Republican cause. This political activism was reflected in his arts and performances.

In the rendition of his famous song “Ol’ Man River”, Robeson modified the word “niggers” to “darkies”. He changed the lyrics further and transformed the originally tragic song into a song of protest and defiance, i.e. from the original lyrics, “Ah gits weary, An’ sick of tryin’, Ah’m tired of livin’, An skeered of dyin’”; to the modified version of, “But I keep laffin’, Instead of cryin’, I must keep fightin’, Until I’m dyin’”.

Powerful statement by Paul Robeson that lead the way he lived

Paul Robeson’s famous quote

Robeson’s business agent was concerned about how his political activism would affect his career. However, Robeson believed that the many contemporary events that happened around the world were more important than any commercial interest. He recorded his famous message, “The artist must take sides. He must elect to fight for freedom or slavery. I have made my choice. I had no alternative.” This message would later become his epitaph.

Paul Robeson in New York with Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, 1957

Paul Robeson with the Indian Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru

Robeson continued to advocate world events that supported the Republican cause. In Wales, he commemorated the Welsh who died fighting for the Republicans. He lent his moral support to the Republican soldiers by going to the battlefront in Spain. He hosted Jawaharlal Nehru in England to show his support for the Indian independence cause. He also supported the political independence aspiration of the African nationalists.

 The song “Chee Lai’ by Paul Robeson

The song “Chee Lai’ by Paul Robeson (click to enlarge)

Robeson also sided with China during the Sino Japanese War. He performed and recorded the song, “Chee Lai!” (“Arise!”), which was also known as the “March of the Volunteers”. Robeson lent his fame and popularity to the song. He recorded the song in Chinese and English, and in 1941, premiered the song at New York City’s Lewisohn Stadium and later, performed it at Washington’s Uline Arena to a sold out crowd.

The recording consisted of a 3-disc album with the introduction from Soong Ching Ling, Dr Sun Yat Sen’s widow. Due to the popularity of the song, it became China’s National Anthem after 1949. Although the Chinese lyricist Tian Han, passed away in prison in 1968, Robeson still faithfully sent the royalties from the song to his family.

 

Paul Robeson’s Chee Lai!

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJv0jMLLRcw
 

 

World War II and Return to the United States

After completing his last British film, Robeson and his family returned to the United States and settled in Enfield, Connecticut. He was then hired by Norman Corwin, to perform “Ballad for Americans”, an American patriotic song. However, during the tour to promote the song, Robeson had an unpleasant experience due to racism that was still rampant then. He found that the only hotel that was willing to accept him regardless of his skin colour was the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, but he was required to register under a different name. To support people of his race, he stationed himself at the hotel lobby “to ensure that the next time blacks come through, they’ll have a place to stay.”

He decided to stop taking film roles after acting in “Tales of Manhattan”, where he acted opposite Ethel Walters as a struggling African American. He viewed the role as demeaning and perceived other movie roles available for coloured actors like him as degrading.

Although he no longer acted in films, he was still active on stage. He became the first African American to play the role of “Othello” with white cast members in Broadway. He went on tour to play this role in North America until 1945.

Newpaper cutting of the show in Broadway which Robeson play the role of Othello

Newspaper cutting of the show in Broadway which Robeson played the role of Othello (click to enlarge)

After his move to the United States, Robeson continued his activism to promote the rights of the African Americans and the anti-Fascist group. He participated in concerts to benefit the war effort. He also became acquainted with members of the Jewish anti-Fascist Committee, Itzik Feffer and Solomon Mikhoels. He unsuccessfully attempted to convince the Commissioner of Baseball at the time, Kenesaw Mountain Landis, to allow African Americans to play in the Major League baseball.

 

The Challenging Years

After World War II ended, a new racial dynamic emerged in the United States. The African American men who fought for their country were unhappy to be treated as second-class citizens, while the white supremacists sought to restore their pre-war dominance. Dissatisfaction grew especially in the southern part of the United States.

On July 25, 1946, a white supremacist mob attacked, shot and murdered two African American couples, Roger and Dorothy Malcom, and George W. and Mae Murray on a dirt road near Moore’s Ford Bridge in Oconee and Walton counties. This tragic incident attracted national attention and became known as Moore’s Ford Lynching.

A historical marker commemorating the Moore's Ford Bridge Lynching

A historical marker on the Moore’s Ford Bridge Lynching (click to enlarge)

This invoked mass protests in New York City and Washington, D.C. which prompted President Harry S. Truman to introduce the draft of the anti-lynching legislation. However, some members of Congress opposed this legislation. Despite the FBI’s attempt to investigate and identify the guilty party, no one was prosecuted.

After the mass lynching incident, Robeson met with President Truman, and said that if the President did not enact the legislation to end lynching, “the Negroes will defend themselves”. President Truman immediately terminated the meeting with Robeson.

Robeson then made a public call for the Congress to pass the anti-lynching legislation and established the American Crusade Against Lynching organisation. He received support from famous civil right activist, William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (W.E.B. Du Bois). Around this time, Robeson also became enchanted with the concept of trade unionism and became a staunch supporter of Revels Cayton, a union activist.

W. E. B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson World Peace Congress in Paris, 1949

W. E. B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson at World Peace Congress in Paris, 1949

In the late 1940s to the mid-1950s, McCarthyism practice was rampant in the United States. The practice was named after Senator Joseph McCarthy. This era was characterised with accusations of treason and subversion without regard for proper evidence. McCarthyism era was triggered by the fear of espionage by Soviet agents and Communist influence in the American Institutions.

Senator Joseph McCarthy, the person who started the McCarthyism practice

Senator Joseph McCarthy

Robeson’s activism and sympathy with the Soviet Union raised suspicions about his communist tendencies. Jack B. Tenney (1898-1970) was a member of the United States Senate and Chairman of the California Committee of the Un-American Activities or also known as the Tenney Committee. Tenney believed that “You can no more coexist with communism than you can coexist with a nest of rattlesnakes” and attacked everyone whom he suspected to be a communist or had a communist tendency. Robeson was one of them. In front of the Tenney Committee, Robeson testified that he was not affiliated with the Communist Party USA. However, he was involved with the Civil Rights Congress (CRC) and Council on African Affairs (CAA) that were included in the Attorney General’s List of Subversive Organizations (AGLOSO).

Paul Robeson with Henry A. Wallace who ran for the 1948 presidential race

Paul Robeson with Henry A. Wallace who ran for the 1948 presidential race

After the preliminary inquiries by the Tenney Committee, Robeson was questioned by the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary regarding his connection with the Communist Party. During this questioning, Robeson made his famous remark, “Some of the most brilliant and distinguished Americans are about to go to jail for the failure to answer that question, and I am going to join them, if necessary.” In 1948, Robeson became involved in the unsuccessful presidential campaign of Henry A. Wallace, which worsened his political situation.

Paul Robeson listens to a speech during the Peace Partisans World Congress in Moscow 20 April 1949

Paul Robeson listening to a speech during the Peace Partisans World Congress in Paris

In the subsequent years, Robeson began to feel the pinch of his political activism. His concert performances were cancelled and he was forced to find work abroad. During his overseas tour, he continued his activism and refused to lay low. He made a speech at the World Peace Council whereby he was accused of equating the United States of America with a Fascist state.

After this speech, he received much criticism and was viewed as the enemy of mainstream America. He refused to submit to public criticisms and continued his controversial political activities such as supporting the twelve defendants in the Smith Act trials of suspected Communist Party leaders.

Paul Robeson with his old friends, Itzik Feffer and Solomon Mikhoels

Paul Robeson with his old friends, Itzik Feffer and Solomon Mikhoels

When Robeson went to Moscow to visit his old friends, Feffer and Mikhoels, he was unable to locate them and had to ask the Soviet authorities of their whereabouts. Because Robeson had always portrayed the Soviet Union in a favourable image, the authorities allowed him to meet with Feffer. During this meeting, Feffer informed Robeson that Mikhoels was dead and he would be executed next. To protect the Soviet Union’s reputation, Robeson kept this meeting a secret and denied the persecution that occurred.

In 1949, Robeson made a speech at the Paris Peace Congress that alarmed many in his native country,

“We in America do not forget that it was on the backs of the white workers from Europe and on the backs of millions of blacks that the wealth of America was built. And we are resolved to share it equally. We reject any hysterical raving that urges us to make war on anyone. Our will to fight for peace is strong. We shall not make war on anyone. We shall not make war on the Soviet Union. We oppose those who wish to build up imperialist Germany and to establish fascism in Greece. We wish peace with Franco’s Spain despite her fascism. We shall support peace and friendship among all nations, with Soviet Russia and the People’s Republics.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: “The Emperor Robeson”, The New York Review of Books, P. 4

Paul Robeson giving speech at the Paris Peace Congress

Paul Robeson giving a speech at the Paris Peace Congress (click to enlarge)

After that speech, Robeson was politically isolated in the United States. Jackie Robinson, an African American professional baseball player, testified in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) that Robeson’s speech “if accurately reported, was silly”. Robeson’s scheduled concert in New York City was cancelled. His appearance on NBC’s Eleanor Roosevelt’s television program was also cancelled. The State Department denied him a passport and therefore restricted his movements within the United States. The State Department officials informed him that the reason for his passport denial was “his frequent criticism of the treatment of blacks in the United States should not be aired in foreign countries”. In 1951, an article that featured Robeson in unfavourable light was published in “The Crisis”. The article was also distributed in Africa to defame Robeson and reduced his popularity there.

Regardless of the pressures and the backlash to his career, Robeson remained true to his activism. On December 17, 1951, he presented We Charge Genocide, an anti-lynching petition, to the United Nations. The document stated that based on Article II of the United Nation Genocide Convention, the United States was “guilty of genocide” due to failure to act against lynching.

Paul Robeson presents “We Charge Genocide” by William Patterson to UN Secretary in New York

Paul Robeson presented “We Charge Genocide” by William Patterson to UN Secretary in New York

It did not help matters much that Robeson accepted the International Stalin Prize in New York due to travel restriction. Not long after Stalin’s passing in April 1953, Robeson wrote a praise to Stalin as a beacon of peace to the world,

“Through his deep humanity, by his wise understanding, he leaves us a rich and monumental heritage.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: marxists.org

While the McCarthyism put a halt to Robeson’s career and restricted his movement, the parties he championed supported him. In May 1952, the labour unions in Canada and the United States held an International Peace Arch Concert on the border between Washington State in the United States and British Columbia Province in Canada. The labour union held three similar concerts within the next three years. Aneurin Bevan, a Welsh politician, encouraged Robeson to record several radio concerts for his supporters in Wales.

 

Continuing Political Oppression

Paul Robeson: activist, communist and spokesperson for the oppressed of the earth

Paul Robeson led Moore Shipyard workers in singing the Star Spangled Banner

In 1956, Robeson invoked the Fifth Amendment and refused to declare his political affiliation in front of HUAC. He was summoned after refusing to sign an affidavit to confirm that he was not a Communist. He was questioned as to why he did not stay in the Soviet Union since he liked their political ideology so much. He replied,

“Because my father was a slave and my people died to build the United States and, I am going to stay here, and have a part of it just like you and no fascist-minded people will drive me from it!” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: cpsr.cs.uchicago.edu

Robeson explained further,

“Whether I am or not a Communist is irrelevant. The question is whether American citizens, regardless of their political beliefs or sympathies, may enjoy their constitutional rights.”

Source: Bailey, Budd, “Red Scare: Communists in America” page 102

 

Paul Robeson at the House Un-American Activities Committee

In 1956 Paul Robeson was dragged in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee. His defiant answers to baiting by right-wing politicians were dramatized by James Earl Jones in this reproduction.

Although his recordings and movies were removed from public distribution in the United States, his political activism did not dim his popularity overseas. In 1956, Topic Records in the United Kingdom released a single from Robeson titled Joe Hill, based on an early 20th-century labour activist (1879-1915). Joe Hill became the third popular songs on Desert Island Discs, a BBC radio program, and the top fourteen most popular songs for British politicians.

In 1956, Robeson performed at two concerts, one in Toronto and the other at Sudbury, Ontario, after he was given a one-time permission to travel to Canada due to public pressure.

As he was not able to travel overseas to entertain his fans, he would hold telephone concerts. “We have to learn the hard way that there is another way to sing”. His telephone concert in 1957, at St. Pancras Town Hall, London, was sold out within one hour. He also held a similar telephone concert in Wales via transatlantic telephone cable and sang to the 5,000 audiences who attended.

 

Paul Robeson’s Joe Hill

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8Kxq9uFDes
 

 

The Revival of a Brilliant Career

Paul Robeson, member of the World Peace Council, in Moscow 1958

Paul Robeson in Moscow (click to enlarge)

In June 1958, the United States Supreme Court via Kent v. Dulles, ruled that the right to travel is a part of the ‘liberty’ of which a citizen cannot be deprived without due process of the law under the Fifth Amendment. Following this landmark decision, Robeson’s passport was restored and in the same year, he published his autobiography titled “Here I Stand”.

Upon receiving his passport, he went on a world tour. He performed classic Russian songs at the Lenin Stadium, Moscow, and received a thunderous reception. He and his wife, Essie, then went to Yalta to meet with Nikita Khrushchev and to rest. In October 1959, Robeson became the first African American performer to sing at St. Paul’s Cathedral.

 

Paul Robeson: Here I Stand

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BUki-v-NvoE
 

During a trip to Moscow, the Robesons experienced a health scare. He was hospitalised for two months due to having heart problems and dizziness. During this time, Essie was diagnosed with operable cancer. Upon his recovery, the couple went back to the United Kingdom.

Paul Robeson, singer, performer and civil rights activist, was welcomed in Russia, Moscow, Russia, January 19, 1935

Paul Robeson, singer, performer and civil rights activist, was welcomed in Russia, Moscow on January 19, 1935

In 1959, Robeson participated in Tony Richardson’s production of “Othello” at Stratford-Upon-Avon and befriended fellow actor, Andrew Faulds. Robeson stayed with Faults’ family in the nearby Shottery Village. In 1960, Robeson sang at the Royal Festival Hall to raise funds for the Movement for Colonial Freedom.

In October the same year, Robeson and his wife travelled to New Zealand and Australia on a two-month concert tour at the invitation of William Morrow (1888-1980), an Australian politician. Robeson was the first artist to perform at the construction site of Sydney Opera House.

Paul Robeson was the first singer to perform at the Sydney Opera House

Paul Robeson sang for the workers at Sydney Opera House’s construction site

During his time in Australia, he became acquainted with Australian Civil Rights activist, Faith Bandler, and attacked bigoted perception that Aborigines were uncultured. In his speech, he mentioned that “There’s no such thing as a backward human being, there is only a society which says they are backward.”

After his performance at the Brisbane Festival Hall, Robeson and his wife visited Auckland, New Zealand. There, Robeson became a staunch defender of the Maori people’s rights and denounced the inequality faced by the Maoris.

 

Paul Robeson Speaks! 1958 KPFA Radio Interview

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YeHzzyisfM
 

 

Retirement and Death

After Robeson’s return to the United States In 1963, he started making appearances in support of the Civil Rights Movement, but soon his health worsened. In 1965, he suffered a kidney blockage and double pneumonia that almost killed him. His wife, however, was not so lucky. Essie was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1963 and two years later, Robeson lost not only his wife but his spokesperson and most loyal supporter.

Paul Robeson Jr, and his father

Paul Robeson and his son, Paul Robeson Jr.

After Essie’s passing, Robeson hardly appeared in public. In reply to questions about his father, his son said that his “father’s health does not permit him to perform or answer questions.” In 1968, Robeson moved into his sister’s home in Philadelphia. During his old age, there were many events held to honour his achievements and activism. However, other than the few messages in support of the civil rights movements, nationally and internationally, he seldom appear in public as he believed that his record spoke for itself.

In 1974, an American painter and sculptor, Kenneth Hari, drew a portrait of Robeson that is still displayed to this day at his alma mater at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. In 1973, his health deteriorated, and he was unable to attend the tribute to mark his 75th birthday at Carnegie Hall. However, he recorded a message that was played during the event, in which he said,

“though I have not been able to be active for several years, I want you to know that I am the same Paul, dedicated as ever to the worldwide cause of humanity for freedom, peace, and brotherhood.” ~ Paul Robeson

Source: Wikipedia.org

On January 23, 1976, Robeson suffered a stroke and passed away from the complications. He was 77 years old. After the funeral service at Mother Zion AME Zion Church, Robeson was laid to rest at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York. Robeson’s biographer, Martin Duberman, wrote that, “the white American press ignored the continuing inability of white America to tolerate a black maverick who refused to bend, …downplayed the racist component central to his persecution during his life, as they paid him gingerly respect and tipped their hat to him as a ‘great American’; while the black American press, ‘which had never, overall, been as hostile to Robeson as the white American press had, opined that his life ‘would always be a challenge to white and black America.'”

Paul Robeson’s grave at Ferncliff Cemetery, New York, United States

Paul Robeson’s grave at Ferncliff Cemetery, New York, United States

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Today, Paul Robeson’s achievements and activism are commemorated across the United States.

 

Sources

  • Duberman, Martin, “Paul Robeson: A Biography”, The New Press, New York, 1995, eBook (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Sparrow, Jeff, “How Paul Robeson found his political voice in the Welsh Valleys”, The Guardian, 2 Jul 2017, [website], https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/jul/02/how-paul-robeson-found-political-voice-in-welsh-valleys (accessed: 21 March 2019)
  • Sparrow, Jeff, “Paul Robeson’s songs and deeds light the way for the fight against Trump”, The Guardian, 20 Feb 2017, [website], https://www.theguardian.com/music/2017/feb/20/paul-robesons-songs-and-deeds-shine-a-light-for-the-fight-against-trump (accessed: 21 March 2019)
  • “Paul Robeson”, Wikipedia.org, 26 March 2019, [website], https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Robeson (accessed: 26 March 2019)
  • “Eslanda Goode Robeson”, Wikipedia.org, 31 January 2019 [website], https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eslanda_Goode_Robeson (accessed: 21 March 2019)
  • “Paul Robeson (1898-1976)”, Coalfield Web Materials, [website], http://www.agor.org.uk/cwm/themes/life/international_relations/paul_robeson.asp (accessed: 21 March 2019)
  • Farell, Jenny, “Paul Robeson: activist, communist, and spokesperson for the oppressed of the earth”, culturematters.org.uk, 31 March 2018, [website], https://www.culturematters.org.uk/index.php/arts/music/item/2772-paul-robeson-activist-and-spokesperson-for-the-oppressed (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Nair, R. Divya, “Oraa Aamaader Gaan Gaaite Dyay Naa: A Bengali Panegyric to Paul Robeson”, Black Agenda Report, 20 June 2018, [website], https://www.blackagendareport.com/oraa-aamaader-gaan-gaaite-dyay-naa-bengali-panegyric-paul-robeson (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • “Paul Robeson, a Brief Biography”, uchicago.edu, [website], http://www.cpsr.cs.uchicago.edu/robeson/bio.html (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Duchen, Jessica, “Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film.” Independent, 20 November 2014, [website], https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/features/paul-robeson-the-story-of-how-an-american-icon-was-driven-to-death-to-be-told-in-film-9874111.html (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Pollock, Arthur, “All God’s Chillun Got Wings” Brooklyn Daily News, 16 May 1924, [website], http://www.eoneill.com/artifacts/reviews/agc1_brooklyn.htm (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Sergio, “Paul Robeson Rarity ‘Proud Valley’ Airing on Turner Classic Movies This Thursday”, IndieWire, 1 April 2013, [website], https://www.indiewire.com/2013/04/paul-robeson-rarity-proud-valley-airing-on-turner-classic-movies-this-thursday-136819/ (accessed: 21 March 2019).
  • Robeson, Paul, “To You Beloved Comrade” Marxists.org, [website], https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/stalin/biographies/1953/04/x01.htm (accessed: 21 March 2019).

 

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6 Responses to Paul Robeson: The Beacon of Hope for the Oppressed

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  1. Samfoonheei on Dec 26, 2020 at 3:01 pm

    Paul Leroy Robeson an American singer, actor, and political activist famous for his involvement of campaigning for the rights of blacks around the world. An international public champion of the socialist who created hope among black people around the world when its constitution outlawed racism. He was an acclaimed stage actor and had the most beautiful voices of the 20th century. While the backlash of his civil rights activities and left-wing ideology left him embittered .
    His career as a singer, actor was practically ruined as he fights for human rights as to this day, he remains a durable symbol of racial pride and consciousness. Interesting and inspiring read.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this inspiring sharing of a black man.

  2. Wai Meng Wan on Oct 8, 2019 at 6:34 pm

    Thank you for this, I found Paul Robeson a man who believed in his ideals and gave it all to defend the rights of others and quick to highlight whatever inequalities he saw in the world..

  3. Ummamageswari on Jun 27, 2019 at 2:44 pm

    Thank you so much for this article. Paul Leroy Robeson was a well-educated man where he earned an athletic scholarship at Rutgers University and continued his studies at Columbia University. He always been curious about his roots and the rich African culture.

    Today, Robeson is remembered as the first African American actor who achieved international prominence, a symbol of African American dignity, and a spokesperson for the oppressed. Thank you.

  4. Chris on Apr 13, 2019 at 7:07 am

    Paul Robeson is a remarkable man with many achievements in his career as an actor cum singer. He is incredible because he is able to achieve so much when racism is still rampant in America. [/color]He has been lucky with his chances but he also possesses the talents that propelled him to stardom.

    He is a passionate human rights activist that fights for inequally wherever he goes and whenever he feels there is an injustice. He does not only fight for racial issues or issues that concern himself. He is a selfless man that would speak up for the weak and not afraid of the consequences that may come.
    [/color]
    His determination is legendary when he presses on with his career and activism even during the toughest time where he was accused of being a communist. He is still able to sell out concerts and even perform through a telephone. There is nothing that can stop him and his passion. His legacy has inspired so many activist and also performers around the world.

    images

  5. Yee Yin on Apr 11, 2019 at 6:13 am

    Many people have not heard of Paul Robeson before, including me. He is inspiring and his achievements are remarkable even though it is a bit sad towards the end of his life. He is inspiring because he fought for justice and equality regardless of their skin colour.

    Back in early 1900, black people in America were badly discriminated against by the white people. But against all odds, Paul Robeson still managed to excel in his study and his career. His success was mainly due to his determination and perseverance. Once he had made the choice, he just did it without giving up.

    What we can learn from Paul Robeson is his determination and that he didn’t give up no matter how difficult things are. He was bullied in the school but it didn’t affect him negatively, he used his experience to motivate himself to be better so he can overcome it. His bad experience made him a stronger and more positive person. Whatever pain he has gone through, he did not do the same to other people.

  6. Samfoonheei on Apr 7, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    Paul Leroy Robeson was an American singer, actor, and political activist. He became famous both for his cultural accomplishments and for his political activism. He was one of the most gifted men of the 20th century been inspired and deeply influenced by his father. An international activist fighting for equality and justice for black people. Robeson has devoted full time to campaigning for the rights of blacks around the world. Inspiring Renaissance man who spent most of his life fighting injustice, for which he was roundly persecuted. Interesting read.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this inspiring post of a great man.

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  • sarassitham
    Thursday, Jan 21. 2021 12:02 AM
    Wow! Those people are really creative and such awesome ideas! The way the houses are designed is just spectacular. The immediate surroundings of your nature house are perfectly suited for a good break and it’s important that people realize that living a healthy life is essential to living a good life. One will never imagine in this remote forest there is such a comfortable, cozy lodging completes with every facilities you can think of.

    Thank you for the beautiful photos and interesting sharing.

    https://bit.ly/2KuP1Qm
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Jan 20. 2021 02:59 PM
    Wow amazing discovery like Indiana Jones adventure. A rare 1,000-year-old Buddhist statue found by a Nazi expedition in 1938. It seem a meteorite that crashed into the Earth about 15,000 years and it have been carved into a Buddha statue by Tibetans as claimed. With this it has proven that the people living in that time were already practicing Buddhism.
    With this discovery scientist had classified the statue as a rare class of iron meteorite. They mentioned that the meteorite must have fell to Earth approximately 15,000 years ago.
    Interesting discovery . The priceless statue is believed to originate from the pre-Buddhist Bon culture of the 11th Century. It sounds like an artifact from an Indiana Jones film.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/1000-year-old-meteorite-buddha.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Jan 20. 2021 02:56 PM
    Rejoice to Pastor Lanse receiving such a blessed, precious, and sacred Vajrayogini image from Rinpoche. Pastor Lanse is one of the many fortunate students who did received gifts from Rinpoche. Reading those comments and from this blog, tells us more of Pastor Lanse . Pastor lanse must have worked very hard benefiting many though. May more people be inspired by her going all the way working for Dharma.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/letters-cards-gifts/a-precious-vajrayogini-for-someone-special.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Jan 20. 2021 02:54 PM
    Merely by looking at the holy image of H H Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche is a blessing. Could imagine it when those who have met H H Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche in person…. the kind of feeling . What a blessing it is to see such a very rare and holy image of H H Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche in Tantric dress. He was one of the great lamas of the twentieth century. He was the root lama of both tutors of the 14th Dalai Lama and the teacher of many of the other Tibetan lamas who have been bringing the Dharma to the West.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/kyabje-pabongka-rinpoche-in-tantric-dress.html
  • sarassitham
    Tuesday, Jan 19. 2021 11:51 PM
    The soothing sounds of nature have helped literally hundreds of thousands of people across the world with finding an inner calmness to help them with study, getting to sleep, relaxing, meditating and chill out.

    I enjoyed all the sharing but I loved to hear the spring bird songs. To me the calming sounds of nature are a natural tonic for mind, body and wellbeing. Thank you for the interesting sharing.

    https://bit.ly/2XR7NVk
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Jan 19. 2021 02:38 PM
    Rei Kawakubo, self-taught Japanese fashion designer known for her avant-garde clothing designs and her high fashion label. She is one of the most influential designers of the late 20th century. Making a name in the western fashion world with very unique design . She has changed not the way we think of the fashion world but the way fashion and thought can coexist in culture and commerce inspiring new generation of designers. Looking at those clothing she had designed is unbelievable and truly unique indeed.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful sharing of a talented Japanese designer.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/rei-kawakubo-grand-dame-of-hiroshima-chic.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Jan 19. 2021 02:36 PM
    Reading this interesting post again of the 5th Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden . The story of how Dorje Shugden become the Protector of Our Time. Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen was an important Gelugpa lama and a contemporary of the 5th Dalai Lama. His extraordinary scholarly knowledge, spiritual practice and having a very close relationship with the 5th Dalai Lama had then causing a lot of jealousy and tension among the officers of the 5th Dalai Lama. Tulku Drakpa was often considered to be more popular then it eclipsed the Dalai Lama’s. Many people all over Tibet, Mongolia and China would come to pay their respects to Tulku Drakpa, and request teachings from him. As Tulku Drakpa’s fame grew, it eclipsed the Dalai Lama’s. Without the 5th Dalai Lama knowledge the officers who was so devoted to their master plot the murder of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen. They had different ways to kill Tulku Drakpa many times without any success. As Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen earlier promise to Nechung to arise as an Protector, finally revealed the method to his own death. Interesting story one must read to understand better. It was a sacrifice he chosen to fulfil and uphold in order to become the Protector of Our Time.
    After realized the mistakes done by his officers, the 5th Dalai Lama composed prayers, crafted a statue to recognize Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen as a Dharma protector. He even built Trode Khangsar which now stand in the heart of Tibet.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/downloads/the-fifth-dalai-lama-dorje-shugden.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 17. 2021 06:28 PM
    Chengdu is a sub-provincial city which serves as the capital of the Chinese province of Sichuan. The city is also home to the famous Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, a conservation center where visitors can view endangered giant pandas in a natural habitat. Been an ancient city with a history of more than 3,100 years, it offer many tourist attraction. Many of the ancient sites around Chengdu reflect the influence of Buddhism, as well as the agricultural history of the region. Thousands of tourists both locally and internationally will flock to this city the beauty of it. It seem Chengdu is one of the most leisurely cities in the world. Well , Chengdu is famous for its spicy hot pot and many other mouth tingling dishes. This is because of the world famous Sichuan peppercorn that is grown in the region. Not only that the Giant statues of the Buddha one in Leshan, show the enduring presence of Buddhism on the area.
    Reading this post help a lot for those first timers visitors like me. I am glad my friends and me made it there to see for ourselves. I wish i could revisit this beautiful and exciting Chengdu again in future. Loved seeing those ancient architecture of those temples and of the city.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this wonderful post with details.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/must-visit-chengdu-exotic-and-exciting.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 17. 2021 06:26 PM
    Many monasteries have their own Dharma Protectors to safeguard the organisation and its interests. Setrap is one of them , they will propitiate their Dharma protectors every month to request for protection, blessings, and assistance for the growth of the Dharma and the well-being of the sangha. Each and every monasteries have their own. Interesting read of this article all about the close historical relationship between Dorje Shugden and Setrap.
    Setrap is emanation of the wrathful emanation of Buddha Amitabha, while Dorje Shugden is emanation of Manjushri. Setrap is an ancient Dharma Protector from the holy land of Bodhgaya in India. Sworn to protect the teachings and the practice was introduced to Tibet, and has since flourished. Many great Lamas and Geshes are known to have practised both Setrap, as Gaden Shartse’s Dharma protector, and also Dorje Shugden. They cannot be wrong definitely where Dorje Shugden is not an evil as claimed by the CTA. They knew the practice is very beneficial . has been the Dharma Protector of Gaden Shartse Monastery for the past 600 years. Dalai Lama visited the Dharma protector Setrap’s chapel in Gaden Shartse Monastery, South India. Dalai Lama even consecrated the chapel with prayers and sees Setrap as an enlightened being. Dalai Lama also endorsed Setrap and his practice as a beneficial one where he did affirmed the practice of Dorje Shugden through such close association. Interesting read may more people read this article to have a clearer understanding.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/dalai-lama-blesses-setrap-chapel-in-gaden-monastery.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Jan 17. 2021 06:24 PM
    Looking at those pictures and videos tell a thousand words. What is underneath those lakes mentioned , cannot be taken too lightly. Well-known lake monsters such as
    Loch Ness , Champ, Ogopogo and so forth has been sighted in those lakes around the world. Stories of a sea monster lurking in the depths of lakes are actually centuries old. To believe or not its up to individual. The unexplored darkness of lakes serve as one of the gateways for these fascinations. Many had claimed witnessing those creatures but with no hard evidence. People love to fill in mysterious areas of nature with myths of monsters. Sightings of such lakes creatures is interesting to many. I do believe there are such sea creatures inhabiting in those lakes centuries ago. Some of those creature’s names indeed new to me. Interesting to know that they do exist after all.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this interesting article.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/7-lake-monsters.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Jan 15. 2021 04:00 PM
    Amazing ,truly beautiful 1000-armed Avalokitesvara. A special gift given by Joshua and family from Singapore to Rinpoche. I love looking at 1000-armed Avalokitesvara where ever I went seeing any images of it i will always stare at it hoping to get hold of it. Avalokiteśvara is one of the most famous bodhisattvas in Buddhism, who embodies the quality of compassion and having the ability to understand the suffering of others. Merely looking at this beautiful 1000-armed Avalokitesvara paints a thousand words.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/beautiful-1000-armed-avalokitesvara.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Jan 15. 2021 03:58 PM
    Revisit this blog again as the miracles stories of Lama Tsongkhapa Statues truly interesting. We are fortunate to have met our Lama Tsem Rinpoche learning all the wonderful teachings of Lama Tsongkhapa. Its such a beneficial teachings and practicing it with so many amazing benefits for us all. Reading this post have me increased my knowledge. Looking at the rare foot print of Lama Tsongkapa which is a sign of his tantric achievements is indeed a blessing for us. The practice of Migtsema is amazing and powerful as it contains the meaning of all the Buddha’s 84,000 teachings.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/benefits-and-miraculous-signs-of-lama-tsongkhapas-statues.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Jan 15. 2021 03:54 PM
    Since the monks are holding so many vows, serving them is an opportunity for HUGE merit. They are a source of inspiration for others who are seeking spiritual solace. We need to support them and creates the causes for the Dharma to remain , creating the causes for an abundance of spiritual and material wealth for ourselves as well. In Bangkok , its amazing having the opportunity to make offerings to the monks and nuns early in the morning. Giving to the monks and nuns is an incredible thing, we create unbelievable merit if we offer to the monks with the motivation of Bodhicitta. Looking at Angel makes offerings, reminds me of my trip to ChiangMai where I have an opportunity to give packed foods to monks early in the morning. Its truly wonderful indeed. If I have the opportunity again I will definitely love to offer foods to the monks.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/students-friends/angel-makes-offerings.html
  • sarassitham
    Friday, Jan 15. 2021 01:02 AM
    Wow! Thank you for the wonderful sharing. I love the amazing recipe on sauces it looks healthy and delicious. I found this recipes very nutritious with all fresh ingredients, spices and herbs. I would love to try it out the Savory Mushroom Gravy.

    https://bit.ly/39MFWeD
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Jan 14. 2021 03:13 PM
    Wow interesting one of the most fantastic escapes in history now comes in comic for everyone to know the truth. The true story of how HH the 14th Dalai Lama had made a daring and dangerous escape. Dalai Lama had secretly travelled to India back in 1959. The truth not many knew but with this comic , more people will understand better. Its in simple and yet easy diagrams where kids and adults would love it. The great Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden through the esteemed Panglung Oracle had helped Dalai Lama .
    Interesting comic book one must read it .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-greatest-escape-in-history.html

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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)
1 year 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)
1 year 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)
1 year 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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Videos On The Go

Please click on the images to watch video
  • Pig puts his toys away
    1 years ago
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  • Cute Tara girl having a snack. She is one of Kechara Forest Retreat’s resident doggies.
    2 yearss ago
    Cute Tara girl having a snack. She is one of Kechara Forest Retreat’s resident doggies.
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    She’s going to spend her whole life here without being able to move correctly. Like a machine. They are the slaves of the people and are viewed as a product. It’s immoral. Billions of terrestrial animals die annually. Billions. You can’t even imagine it. And all that because people don’t want to give up meat, even though there are so many alternatives. ~ Gabriel Azimov
  • Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
    2 yearss ago
    This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
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  • This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
    2 yearss ago
    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
  • These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
    2 yearss ago
    Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
  • Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
    2 yearss ago
    Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
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    2 yearss ago
    Beautiful
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  • My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
  • Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
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  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
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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.

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CHAT PICTURES

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 weeks 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 weeks 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 weeks 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
2 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
2 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
2 months ago
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
2 months ago
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 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
4 months ago
Fwd: Dear Sotha
Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
4 months ago
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
4 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
5 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
5 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
6 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
7 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
8 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
8 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
8 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
8 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
8 months ago
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
8 months ago
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wesak 2020
8 months ago
Wesak 2020
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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.
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months 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
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
10 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
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