Tsem Rinpoche’s moving experience with Lama Zopa in Kopan (1987)

Mar 30, 2019 | Views: 3,563
Venerable Lama Zopa in front of Kopan's 1000-Armed Chenrezig statue. I was in Nepal when received this initiation from Lama Zopa in 1987, after I had received ordination vows from His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, North India.

Venerable Lama Zopa in front of Kopan’s 1000-Armed Chenrezig statue. Tsem Rinpoche was in Nepal when he received this initiation from Lama Zopa in 1987, after he had received ordination vows from His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, North India.

Everyone knows I had met His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama back in the United States and when I met him, I personally requested him to ordain me to become a monk. And His Holiness was very gracious and he said to me, “You want to be a monk?” I said, “Yes” and he said, “No problem. You come to India.” So, that is what I did. I went to India, back in 1987 around October-ish.

I left America for good and I touched down at Delhi. From Delhi, I went to Dharamsala. Dharamsala is one night’s bus journey, about 14 to 16 hours, depending on weather, to Dharamsala. When I arrived at Dharamsala, Gaden Shartse Monastery has a puja house and guesthouse there so I stayed there for free because I was going to be a Gaden Shartse monk. They hosted me there for about two months for free, food and everything, very kind. And so, then I went to the Dalai Lama’s private office, Kukey Yiktsang, and I registered and I told them what the Dalai Lama had said. And back then, His Holiness was not really that famous although he is great. So it was very easy to get audience and just walk up to his private office. Very casual.

When I was in the USA, I requested His Holiness the Dalai Lama for ordination and he agreed. Somehow, someone was able to capture this moment on film which you can watch here.

When Tsem Rinpoche was in the USA, he requested His Holiness the Dalai Lama for ordination and he agreed. Somehow, someone was able to capture this moment on film which you can watch here.

And so, I went to his private office which was about 20 minutes’ walk away from the Gaden Shartse guesthouse and I registered and they were like, “Sure, sure.” And they said, “Ok, if you want to be a monk, since His Holiness invited you, that is fine.” They didn’t even question if it was authentic or not because, I mean, how many people are going to come and become a monk, right? Apparently, a lot. Anyways, I said to them that that is what His Holiness said. They said, “Fine. The rules of becoming a monk is three at a time. You can’t expect His Holiness to do the whole ceremony for one person. But anyway, the rule is to do three at a time, so you have to find two other persons who want to become a monk, register and then the three of you, very lucky, His Holiness will do the whole ceremony just for the three of you because he promised.” Wow.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama's home in Dharamsala, North India

His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s home in Dharamsala, North India

I went, “Wow.” Can you imagine, the Dalai Lama is going to do it for me? But the other “wow” was “Wow, how am I going to find two more people to be a monk?” So I was standing in front of the Dalai Lama‘s palace, literally scratching my head, thinking, “Now where am I going to interview?” So I started walking around, “Do you know anybody who wants to be a monk? Do you know anybody who want to be a monk?” And then I asked the monks, “Do you know anybody who wants to be a monk?” So they spread the word around and it worked! It actually worked!

Somebody came along and said, “Yeah!” There is actually somebody who wants to be a monk and if they can be with His Holiness, why not? And then, from the Dalai Lama‘s office, they informed me that another person had registered with them and so we have three persons. So, another person registered with His Holiness’s office and then, I think we found somebody. It wasn’t casual, it wasn’t like, “Oh yeah,” you know like, “Let’s have barbeque and I’ll be a monk by evening.” I mean, somebody wanted to and it’s just that they needed ordination. So we have three persons.

Venerable Sangtsang Rinpoche, who helped me to prepare for my ordination ceremony. Sangtsang Rinpoche was a devoted practitioner of Dorje Shugden as were many lamas of the day.

Venerable Sangtsang Rinpoche, who helped Tsem Rinpoche to prepare for his ordination ceremony. Sangtsang Rinpoche was a devoted practitioner of Dorje Shugden as were many lamas of the day.

And there was this wonderful Rinpoche in Dharamsala who was Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen‘s friend, and Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen wrote him a letter. Sorry – he was Zong Rinpoche‘s attendant’s friend. So I was introduced to him and his name was Kushok Sangtsang Rinpoche, who was very learned, very humble, very gentle, very easy-going, always laughing and smiling yet very alert, and he resided in Dharamsala and he worked for the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives. So he worked in the Dalai Lama‘s library there and he was so kind. When he found out I am going to be a monk, because I was introduced to him, he personally took me to Lower Dharamsala where the Indian sellers are and he helped me to buy my robes. He took me to the tailors and he got my robes stitched for me because he knows what to do. He basically just prepared all the things I needed to become a monk.

And when the day came, I had to cut off all my hair except for one little bit here and then they snip it off. And then I walked there with my robes – you go there with your robes on – and I was tripping and falling all over the place ’cause my robes kept going under my feet. And that morning it took me 15 minutes to put my robes on ’cause I didn’t know how to fold it. I fold it, unfold it, fold it, unfold it. The monks were laughing at me ’cause I just didn’t know how to put it on. And you know, if you put it on wrong, you fall down and you’ll be standing there in your underwear. So anyways, I finally figured out how to put on my robes after 15 minutes. Every day for the next two weeks, it took 15 minutes. Now, it takes me 30 seconds.

In Los Angeles, I promised His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that I would become a monk. To show that he accepted my promise, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche symbolically cut a lock of my hair. Many years later, His Holiness the Dalai Lama would do something similar during the ordination ceremony (snipping off the remaining strands of hair on my head).

In Los Angeles, Tsem Rinpoche promised His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that he would become a monk. To show that he accepted Tsem Rinpoche’s promise, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche symbolically cut a lock of his hair. Many years later, His Holiness the Dalai Lama would do something similar during the ordination ceremony (snipping off the remaining strands of hair on Tsem Rinpoche’s head).

The next thing you know, I was standing in front of His Holiness and I received my ordination vows and His Holiness personally cut my hair and He took it, put it on a plate and He gave me my name, Tenzin Zopa. And the whole ceremony took about two and a half, three hours and I was just so happy because my dream came true. So I came out of the… I mean, there was a lot more to the ceremony but I will talk about that for another blogpost.

Then, when I came out of the ordination hall with His Holiness… and the abbot there was His Holiness Kyabje Denma Locho Rinpoche, which I received a lot of teachings from later. And so when I came out, there was another Rinpoche friend of mine there, his name was Sharpa Rinpoche, he was there to greet me. The other monks had their family members there, their parents, they offered khatas, they were happy, they were rejoicing. I was alone. I was alone and that was a little poignant for me because none of my parents supported me but these other new monks, they had their families all support them. So I was a little lonely but I said, “You know, it doesn’t matter. I am here to practise Dharma.”

So after I became ordained, I was so happy. It culminated in so many years of wanting to be a monk. All the times I ran away, all the times I had been beaten by my parents, all the times I was restricted, working so hard in Los Angeles – it all culminated in me becoming a monk finally ’cause it was a journey I had to take alone. So after I finished that, I had to go to Nepal for some work. And while I was in Dharamsala, I stitched a Panchen Sonam Drakpa hat for Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen as a gift and so I sent that to him and he was very happy with the hat. There’s a picture of him wearing it. It was a gift from me, it was my gift to him for allowing me to be ordained and making all the arrangements.

Me with Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen-la. This was taken in India some time after I became ordained. Geshe-la was instrumental in, amongst many other things, helping me to get ordained and preparing for the ceremony.

Tsem Rinpoche with Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen-la. This was taken in India some time after Tsem Rinpoche became ordained. Geshe-la was instrumental in, amongst many other things, helping Tsem Rinpoche to get ordained and preparing for the ceremony.

Geshe-la made all the arrangements for me in Delhi and Dharamsala, for people to help me to be ordained. He did all the arrangements, all. Without him, I wouldn’t have so many doors open for me. So when I went to Nepal, I had a letter from Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen to a Geshe Samdo in Samtenling Monastery in Nepal. And the doors of Samtenling opened for me too and I got free room, free food – everything, because Geshe-la wrote them a letter. So I stayed in Samtenling for two months. I had some work to do. I wanted to go on pilgrimage and after Samtenling, I am going to go back to Gaden Monastery and join Gaden Monastery officially. Officially. So while I was there, as you know, as I told you, I met Gangchen Rinpoche and the whole debacle of my friend not taking me there but I found my way anyways. Meeting Gangchen Rinpoche was not a debacle but everything up to that point was a debacle. Anyways, let’s not get into that right now.

Samtenling Monastery where I stayed for two months, just 10 seconds away from the famous Boudha Stupa

Samtenling Monastery where Tsem Rinpoche stayed for two months, just 10 seconds away from the famous Boudha Stupa

So while I was in Nepal for two months, I visited all the holy places ’cause I made friends with the monks there and the monastery did Dorje Shugden practice at that time. They did Dorje Shugden practice every single day so I would go there, make offerings and join the pujas and all that stuff. And that monastery is just 10 seconds’ walk from Boudha Stupa, it is very nearby. So it was such a beautiful time, 1987. Nepal was very innocent. It was very simple, there is a lot of backpackers, there is a lot of spirituality, there is a lot of monks, there is a lot of nuns, there is a lot of monasteries, temples – you guys all know, you’ve been there. And it was just a magical place. Just think – from Howell, New Jersey to Sodom and Gomorrah a.k.a. Los Angeles and here am I in Shangri-la. Here I am in the middle of Boudha, the huge stupa, all the temple, all the monks. Everywhere I go there’s Maitreya statues, Buddha statues, Chenrezig statues, butter lamps, incense, sangsol, monkeys, lamas, tulkus, nuns, meditators, practitioners, Mahasiddhas – they are all over the place. Can you imagine me in Nepal? I was like, “Oh my god, I’m home.” It was such a magical time for me.

A map showing all the monasteries and temples surrounding Boudha Stupa. Samtenling, which as you can see is VERY close to the stupa, is circled in yellow.

A map showing all the monasteries and temples surrounding Boudha Stupa. Samtenling, which as you can see is VERY close to the stupa, is circled in yellow.

And then, what was so beautiful was I met so many Vajrayogini hermits, people who meditated on Vajrayogini for their lifetime. That means they never come out of their hermitage, they stay in meditation, I met people like that. And then I met Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche at that time. I had the great honour to go to his house and meet him and receive teachings from him, and receive oral transmissions and blessings from him, and advice from him. And I was also very lucky because while I was in Nepal in 1987, Zopa Rinpoche also came to Kopan Monastery. You see, ’cause Zopa Rinpoche travels so he came to Kopan Monastery and I had visited Kopan Monastery. So I had heard that Zopa Rinpoche is giving a 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara initiation in Kopan. I was so excited. Number 1 – I wanted Avalokiteshvara‘s practice ’cause I love Avalokiteshvara or Chenrezig. Number 2 – Zopa Rinpoche is a great monk. Number 3 – it is in Kopan and I am in Kathmandu. Wow, I mean, it’s magical. Can you imagine me in New Jersey to this? I was so happy.

Zopa Rinpoche, also known as Lama Zopa, was giving 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara initiation in Kopan Monastery in 1987

Zopa Rinpoche, also known as Lama Zopa, was giving 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara initiation in Kopan Monastery in 1987

So, what I did was this. The initiation is around 8pm, if I remember correctly, around 8pm at night. So there are two routes to Kopan from Boudha. You can walk outside of the monastery and you walk to the backroads then you hit a road, about half hour walk then you hit another road that you make a sharp right and then you go up Kopan which is another hour and a half, hour and 45 minutes’ walk. And it is very hard to go up there ’cause the road is dirt and it is mountainous. So, you need… you know, taxis only go up part of the way, the rest you have to walk. The other way is, you come out of Boudha and you take the main road with the taxi and then you go to the main road and then you go… when you hit the dirt road then you go up with the taxi part way and then you walk. So either way, part of the way, you have to walk. If you take a taxi through the main road to Kopan, that time, with those cars back then, it is about an hour. If you go through the back roads and walk, it is about two hours, two and a half hours ’cause I was strong and young and I can move quite fast.

So anyways, you can’t get any taxis at night. They are not going to go there. 8 o’clock, it is already dark. So I couldn’t get any taxis. I had bought a lot of fruits – I had bought about 4, 5 kgs of fruits – then I had my sadhana, I had my Dharma texts and I am wearing my robes. So I carried everything on my back. I had a backpack, I put everything in my backpack, I carried it with my robes and I walked. I took the backroad and walked. When I was walking through Boudha, there are some lights here and there but when I got to the dirt road that goes up Kopan, it was pitch-black. Literally you are walking in the dark. So if you look up the mountain, you see a little bit of lights, little bit of teeny, little balls of lights here and there. They are not spiritual orbs, they are little lights from windows. And you just follow those lights and there is just one road. So I walked up, I walked up in the dark.

As you can see, beautiful Kopan Monastery is on quite a high hill and due to my making a wrong turn when I went there for initiation, I ended up having to scale a cliff to get to the monastery. It was worth it though because I was able to receive the 1000-Armed Chenrezig initiation from Venerable Zopa Rinpoche.

As you can see, beautiful Kopan Monastery is on quite a high hill and due to Tsem Rinpoche making a wrong turn when he went there for initiation, he ended up having to scale a cliff to get to the monastery. It was worth it though because Tsem Rinpoche said he was able to receive the 1000-Armed Chenrezig initiation from Venerable Zopa Rinpoche. It was worth the great effort. We must make great efforts towards getting and practising Dharma.

When I got to the last stretch of the road that was going up Kopan, I took a wrong turn ’cause it is pitch-dark. Literally, you’re just walking like that (waves hands in front). And there is nobody around, nobody, not even a dog. It was pitch-dark so when I got to the last stretch, I took a wrong turn and then I came over to the side of a cliff. On top of the cliff and then it’s Kopan. So I literally was at a perpendicular cliff, horizontal… I was standing horizontal at a perpendicular cliff and I literally climbed up in the dark. And then I threw my bag over and I jumped over. And when I jumped over the cliff and I got on top, then I saw lights there and it was Kopan Monastery. It took me three hours in the dark to walk there. It was freezing, it was really freezing. I was sweaty, my nails were full of dirt now ’cause I was climbing in the dirt. My feet are swollen, I am thirsty, I need to go to the bathroom, I am hungry and I am shivering. But none of that deterred me, I wasn’t upset at all. I was a little upset I took the wrong road but I was so excited I am going to get initiation. And I arrived, I arrived around 7.30pm, 7.45pm. So I ran to the bathroom there, I said to the monks, “Where is the bathroom?” I cleaned up little bit ’cause I don’t want to go to initiation dirty. And then they had a tent set up ’cause back then in 1987, Kopan main prayer hall was very small. So they set up a big tent outside and they expected about 150, 200 persons, something like that. So they set up a big tent and they have a throne there for Lama Zopa and we all sat on the floor. The tent had carpets, it was very nice but it was cold.

The grounds of Kopan Monastery are quite beautiful. To accommodate for all the initiates, a tent was pitched in the grounds of the monastery.

The grounds of Kopan Monastery are quite beautiful. To accommodate for all the initiates, a tent was pitched in the grounds of the monastery.

Lama Zopa changed his schedule and showed up at 1am instead. So the initiation was supposed to start at 8pm but he didn’t show up until 1am. So we just kindda waited in the tent from 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 1. We waited six hours in the tent and I just talked to some of the students there and they said, “Oh, it’s normal.” I am like, “What’s normal?” “That Lama Zopa changes his schedule.” I said, “Oh, okay.” Because Geshe-la wasn’t like that. Geshe-la tells you, “8 o’ clock”, it’s 8 o’clock in Los Angeles. So what I am used to in Los Angeles in Thubten Dhargye Ling Centre is if Geshe-la, our teacher, says it’s 8 o’clock, it’s 8 o’clock. I mean at the most, it’s 5, 10 minutes late. But Lama Zopa was like six hours late. Mind you, I didn’t think anything negative, I wasn’t angry or anything. I was just starving. I was starving and I didn’t have tea, I didn’t have anything to drink and you’re shivering. So I said, “Never mind. This is for initiation” and I said to myself, “Avalokiteshvara is worth this.” So… around 1am rolled around and they announced Lama Zopa is coming. I was so excited, I was so happy. And Lama Zopa came, he sat on the throne and he proceeded to give a teaching on impermanence and refuge, and then he proceeded with the initiation.

Before everyone could drink their tea, Lama Zopa recited offering prayers, similar to what is pictured here.

Before everyone could drink their tea, Lama Zopa recited offering prayers, similar to what is pictured here.

The initiation, if I remember correctly, finished around 4, 5am. I had been up the whole day, climbing the mountain all night and around 3am, there was a little break and they were going to offer all the initiates tea. Tibetan tea, hot and steaming. Just think – you’re freezing to death, you haven’t had anything to drink, now you want that Tibetan soup. Usually, you get Tibetan tea, it’s got like tea and butter and salt and milk and you are like, “Yuck!” That’s so thick, it is like soup, right? I was dying for it. So they gave us… I was like, “I don’t have a cup.” The monks said, “Don’t worry, we’re going to give you a cup.” So I got a cup and they filled up my Tibetan tea and it was steaming. And I could see the butter floating and I was like (slurping sounds). But Lama Zopa had to make an offering first.

So Lama Zopa… by the time they poured the tea, mine was getting warm ’cause they had to pour for 100, 200 persons, right? And then after everybody got their tea, Lama Zopa said he is going to make an offering. So he took his tea cup and he raised it up to the sky and recited a whole bunch of prayers, which took about three, four minutes while I am looking at my steaming tea, thinking, “I don’t think the Buddhas are thirsty. Can we just drink our tea?” And after he finishes offering, you know, I mean he is a great monk, after he finishes offering, we got to drink our tea. I can’t remember a time when tea tasted better than that.

So I drank my tea. If I remember, they give you a little bread so that gave me some nourishment. Then after the tea break, he continued with the initiation. There was no bathroom break and that is typical in Tibetan monasteries. You know, you can go for six to eight hours, no bathroom, I am not kidding. If you go to the bathroom, you miss out. You missed it so you don’t get the whole initiation. So some people who needs to visit the bathroom once every hour, you better look for the fast track. I have gone for teachings, 12 hours I don’t go to the bathroom. You have to go, you just hold it and you learn how to hold it and after a while, you tell your bladder, “You listen to me, I don’t listen to you.”

Many years later in Malaysia with Zopa Rinpoche, who is also known as Lama Zopa.

Many years later in Malaysia with Zopa Rinpoche, who is also known as Lama Zopa. Prior to the unethical ban against Dorje Shugden practitioners by the Tibetan leadership, whenever Lama Zopa was in Singapore or Malaysia, he would contact Tsem Rinpoche to meet up. Tsem Rinpoche would be shy but very happy to meet up with Lama Zopa Rinpoche as Tsem Rinpoche has tremendous faith in Lama Zopa. Tsem Rinpoche often wishes one day before it is too late, he can meet Lama Zopa Rinpoche again to reconnect their spiritual relationship. He says he has some questions regarding some tantric passages he knows Lama Zopa Rinpoche can elucidate for him.

Now… and it was a beautiful teaching and we finished around 4, 5am and I got the whole initiation. Until today, I am doing the practice that I received. I have not missed out on it. So after we finished, I was thinking to myself, “Okay, now I gotta walk down again. It is going to be another three hours, four hours. So by the time I get back to the monastery, about 7, 8am?” The good part is by the time I get back, it will be light. The bad part is, halfway there, it is going to be in the dark again, I hope I don’t fall down. There’s no taxis, there’s no cars, nothing.

Kopan had guesthouses and libraries and all that stuff but it’s been booked. So I was packing up my things and everybody is packing up their things. I don’t have money, I was young and I was thinking, “God, should I just sleep outside somewhere? Should I walk down? What should I do?” While I was thinking that, Lama Zopa signalled to me. Lama Zopa, from the throne, signalled to me and said to me, “Come here.” So I went, “Me?” I mean, I don’t know him, you know. I walked up to him and he said, he just said to me, “Where are you going to stay tonight?” I said, “I don’t have a place to stay. I was thinking about walking back.” He said, “To where?” I said, “To Boudha.” He said, “That’s very far.” I said, “I know but there are no guesthouses here.” He said, “I will make arrangements for you. Don’t worry.”

Oh my god, I was so touched. Out of 200 people, how does he know I don’t have a place to stay? Why does he point out to me? I mean, I didn’t have a signboard, “Give me a free place to stay”, right? And he said that to me and I just folded my hands and said, “Thank you so much.”

The famous Boudha Stupa. I stayed in Samtenling Monastery, which was just 10 seconds away from this beautiful stupa. Kopan Monastery itself was a few hours' walk away in the hills but after the initiation, I was going to walk back to Samtenling, until Lama Zopa kindly intervened.

The famous Boudha Stupa. Tsem Rinpoche stayed in Samtenling Monastery, which was just 10 seconds away from this beautiful stupa. Kopan Monastery itself was a few hours’ walk away in the hills but after the initiation, Tsem Rinpoche was going to walk back to Samtenling, until Lama Zopa kindly intervened.

So a monk came, he escorted me to the library – Kopan’s library – and there were like another 50 people there with sleeping bags and he said, “You sleep here because we don’t have any rooms and this will be warm for you. And then in the morning, you can go downstairs and get breakfast.” I said, “Oh, thank you so much.” I was so happy to stay there with the community of monks and practitioners around the world and I said to him, “I don’t have a sleeping bag” and he said, “Oh, Lama Zopa told us to help you.” So he gave me blankets and a pillow. So I slept on the carpet which was plush – Tibetan carpet – with a pillow and a blanket and it was so comfy.

I couldn’t fall asleep ’cause I was so excited. I was so excited about the initiation, I was so excited about meeting Lama Zopa, I was so excited that everybody was so kind. I was so excited that Lama Zopa showed his clairvoyance. I was so excited that I had a cup of tea. I was so excited that I am going to get a free breakfast. I was so excited that I have a place to stay. And I was really excited I don’t have to walk back to Boudha that night, ’cause it was a dreadful long walk, trust me. And if it rains, you’re finished. I have walked to Kopan when it rained and I was stuck in rain and walking in the mud, caused I walked to Kopan at least 10 to 15 times.

So I couldn’t sleep ’cause I was so excited. I was looking at the library, I was dying… ’cause they had a lot of postcards of Buddhas for sale, I wanted to look at them but there was no lights, they turned it all off. So I waited until morning and when morning came, I got up immediately and all the Westerners got up and they were wandering around – some were sleeping – and I looked at the library, I looked at the postcards. I bought some postcards, I was so excited. Then I went downstairs to the kitchen to have lunch… sorry, to have breakfast and one of the monks announced to me that there will be special thukpa soup – thukpa is noodle soup – sponsored by Lama Zopa for everyone. I was like, “Wow, Lama Zopa is so kind.” So I decided to wait for lunch, for the thukpa. Not because I was looking for a free lunch but I thought, “It’s from Lama Zopa, it’s blessed.” So I walked around Kopan’s grounds, I walked around the temple, I went inside to make offerings, I circumambulated around the stupas ’cause Lama Yeshe had already passed away, I talked to a few monks, I hung out at the library until lunch.

Thukpa is a traditional Tibetan noodle soup. The lunch was delayed because Lama Zopa had done a divination and asked that the thukpa noodles be changed to a different shape, as it would be more auspicious for all of us.

Thukpa is a traditional Tibetan noodle soup. The lunch was delayed because Lama Zopa had done a divination and asked that the thukpa noodles be changed to a different shape, as it would be more auspicious for all of us.

And during lunch, it was supposed to be at 1… 12… 1pm, we were supposed to get lunch, 12 or 1pm, something around that time, midday. And then we got a second announcement: the thukpa is going to be delayed because Lama Zopa did a divination and the shape of the noodles is wrong. So they have to do the whole thing over and do all the noodles in a different shape so it’s more auspicious for all of us and good luck for all of us. I was like, “Uhh, okay.” So we waited another two and a half, three hours for the thukpas to be completely remade because Lama Zopa did a divination that the current shape of the thukpas are not auspicious for us and he wants us to have the best thukpa. I don’t know what they did with the old thukpa, but they made a whole new batch. And I just asked one of the monks… I went down to the kitchen to see if I can help, look around, and they were all very happy chopping away, they are doing the dough again and they were cutting. And I said to them, “It is a lot of work.” And they said, “Oh, it’s normal.” And I said, “What’s normal?” “That Lama Zopa changes the menu at the last minute when everything is done and cooked.” And I said, “Why does he do that?” I wasn’t questioning in a bad way, I just was, “Why?” He said, “Because Lama Zopa does divinations and things change. So things change all the time with divination.” And I went, “Oh, okay.”

Pictured here is 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara or Chenrezig. Tsem Rinpoche received the initiation of this practice from Lama Zopa. Click on the image above for a high resolution version or click here to download more high resolution Buddha images.

Well, the thukpas came out and they were in the shape of little bow ties, you know like bow ties, and I got my big bowl too. It was delicious, I ate that and then I didn’t have a chance to say “thank you” to Lama Zopa because he was in his audience room, his room. So I went in front of the temple where his residence is and I visualised him inside the room, and I folded my hands and I psychically sent him a message – I mean, my pretend ‘psychic’ – and I just said in my mind, “Thank you for the initiation, thank you for the place to stay, for the food, the thukpa and I will do this practice.” So I visualised that and thanked him and then I walked down. And I was very happy to walk down because when I left it was about 4, 5 o’clock and I had a casual walk back to Boudha, two, two and a half hours because it was daytime. And I didn’t get lost this time. When I arrived back to Samtenling Monastery – Samtenling – my monk friends, they were all worried and they were like, “What happened to you? We didn’t know what happened to you.” And I told them everything, and they were so happy for me.

Back in Nepal in 1990, a few years after I was ordained. This photo was taken in Gangchen Ladrang in Chabhil, Nepal. His Eminence Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche is seated on the throne. I am very fortunate to have had such a close relationship with so many attained beings throughout my life.

Back in Nepal in 1990, a few years after Tsem Rinpoche was ordained. This photo was taken in Gangchen Ladrang in Chabhil, Nepal. His Eminence Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche is seated on the throne. Tsem Rinpoche says that he is very fortunate to have had such a close relationship with so many attained beings throughout his life. He has had Dharma connections with many attained masters. Here, Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche asked Tsem Rinpoche to give a teaching to Gangchen Rinpoche’s students and Tsem Rinpoche taught them about Guru Devotion.

So that was how I got 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara initiation from Lama Zopa, that is how I made it up to Kopan, that was the adventure that brought me up there and Lama Zopa’s kindness and his compassion and how he took care of every one of his students, even people he had met for the very first time.

His Eminence Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche whom I met in Nepal for the first time in 1987

His Eminence Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche whom Tsem Rinpoche met in Nepal for the first time in 1987

And my two months, two and a half months in Boudha, in Kathmandu in 1987 was one of the best and most magical times of my life. I visited the five holy Vajrayogini places. One place is not open to foreigners but I was able to sneak in ’cause I looked like one of the Tibetans. I was able to visit the Guru Rinpoche cave. I was able to visit many, many holy monasteries of the Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya, Gelug traditions. I met one or two meditators who had gone into meditation for life. That means they will never come out and I met them, made offerings to them. I met innumerable beautiful senior monks who were so kind and so knowledgeable and filled with the traditional, what you’d expect from old monks – compassion.

I was able to meet high lamas for the first time and receive teachings from them like Kyabje Gangchen Rinpoche and spend a lot of time with him, hanging out at his house, getting teachings, assisting him, going shopping with him, visiting his Guru. He had one guru in Kathmandu at that time and the name was Kha Geshe and why? Because Kha Geshe would have an “AH” appear on his tongue from time to time. So when people saw him and he stuck out his tongue, you’d see a clear impression of the Tibetan syllable “AH” which meant the speech of all Buddhas. And sometimes, these mantras will appear at the bottom of his feet. So when you lift his feet up, you will see it.

The statue of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that I commissioned

The statue of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that Tsem Rinpoche commissioned in 1987

So we went to meet Kha Geshe and I had the honour. This was Gangchen Rinpoche’s tutor so I had the honour to go make prostrations to Kha Geshe, make prostrations to him, make offerings to him, receive his blessings and pray in front of him, develop aspirational prayers. In front of holy beings, you make aspirational prayers that you can become like them.

So I met many beings like that. And I was able to circumambulate around the Boudha Stupa for two months, every single night. Every single night, sometimes in the morning, I would go with my monk friends and we’d recite mantras and circumambulate around the stupa. I didn’t miss even one night. And that was the time where I found a sculptor who made a Zong Rinpoche statue for me. It was about 1,500 rupees, out of clay and painted. So I used to visit the sculptor every day to make sure it was done correctly. So I had a Zong Rinpoche statue carved because I wanted my Guru’s statue.

The thangka of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that I commissioned. Later on, I had this thangka reproduced which you can download in high resolution here.

The thangka of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche that Tsem Rinpoche commissioned. Later on, Tsem Rinpoche had this thangka reproduced which you can download in high resolution here.

And then I also had a Zong Rinpoche thangka made where in the centre it’s Zong Rinpoche. On the left is Vajrayogini emanating from his heart and on the right is Dorje Shugden emanating from his heart. So I had that thangka made in Kathmandu. I also made a Dorje Shugden thangka which I have here, the small one. I made a Dorje Shugden thangka there and Geshe Samdo of Samtenling Monastery helped me to stitch it. He found the artist for me and I had a beautiful Dorje Shugden thangka made.

So I had a beautiful Dorje Shugden thangka made which I have with me now. I had a Zong Rinpoche thangka made. I had a Zong Rinpoche statue made. In the marketplace, I found a Dorje Shugden steel tsa tsa, small one which they only had one. Nobody knew who it was but I know it was Dorje Shugden and I bought it, ’cause I was looking for one and I found it. I met yogis, hermits, high lamas, great monks. I went to many temples. I went to the Vajrayogini holy places. I went to the Tara self-arising holy place. So two months in Kathmandu was a magical time and after I had moved to Malaysia, I took a lot of Malaysian friends there to visit all the places that was introduced to me back in 1987. And so it was just such a magical, beautiful time and during that time I was able to receive the 1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara practice, so I wanted to share that. Thank you.

Tsem Rinpoche

 

Getting Chenrezig in Kopan, 1987

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

 

Lama Zopa (left) and his teacher Lama Yeshe. Together, they invoked upon Dorje Shugden's blessings to establish Kopan Monastery and the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT)

Lama Zopa (left) and his teacher Lama Yeshe. Together, they invoked upon Dorje Shugden’s blessings to establish Kopan Monastery and the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT).

Epilogue

Kopan Monastery was established in 1969 by Lama Yeshe and his student Lama Zopa. It is a member of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT), an international network of Dharma centres that was founded by Lama Yeshe a few years later in 1975. Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa are from the exact same lineage as our Tsem Rinpoche; that is, they belong to the lineage of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche and so on. And not only have Lama Yeshe, Lama Zopa and Tsem Rinpoche received direct teachings from His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, but Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa also received the practice of Dorje Shugden from this very precious lineage and these eminent lamas.

Within the lineage that Lama Yeshe, Lama Zopa and Tsem Rinpoche are from, a lot of emphasis is placed on the importance of following our teachers’ instructions. When it comes to the spiritual instructions, Dharma teachings, practices and meditations from our teachers, we should not be selective and think that some of our gurus’ teachings are good while others are false. This is according to advice from Vajradhara himself. Vajradhara, the supreme form that Shakyamuni took to expound the tantras, clearly elucidated that once we have taken refuge, we should not find fault in any part of our spiritual guide (guru).

The Buddha Vajradhara taught that we should see our teachers as perfect Buddhas and that after refuge, we should not seek for faults in our spiritual guides. It therefore goes without saying that we should not be selective with the spiritual instructions and practices we receive from our teachers.

Vajradhara also taught that it is extremely important for us to view our teachers as one with Vajradhara and the Buddha himself. Hence when we say that our teacher is Guru Vajradhara, Buddha Shakyamuni and so on but on the other hand we say he makes mistakes, it is very hard for modern practitioners to reconcile that it is possible for someone we visualise as the perfect Vajradhara to make spiritual mistakes. How else do we expect modern practitioners to feel? If our teachers who are living Buddhas can make mistakes then surely by visualising them as those beings (Vajradhara, etc.), we will not get blessings because we are supplicating imperfect beings who make mistakes. It would therefore be illogical to say that on one hand, our teachers are living Buddhas but on the other hand say they made mistakes. It would be equally illogical to say that living Buddhas like Kyabje Zong Rinpoche and Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche made mistakes by teaching, initiating and proliferating the Dorje Shugden lineage.

There is a great story in the Lamrim that demonstrates how blessings can come even from a dog’s tooth. It involves a merchant who frequently travelled from Tibet to India, leaving his mother in their house in the village. The merchant’s aged mother was a very pious and devoted woman who, like most Tibetans, looked upon India as the Land of the Aryas (enlightened ones). Tibetans consider India the holy land because it is the place where Shakyamuni gained enlightenment as Prince Siddhartha. Therefore every time the merchant went to India, his mother would remind him to bring back a sacred relic so she could place it on her shrine to worship and be blessed.

Buddha Shakyamuni attained enlightenment under the bodhi tree in Bodhgaya, India. Today, the place is one of the major pilgrimage sites for Buddhists all around the world. To read the pictorial biography of Buddha’s life story, please click here.

Each time he returned, the mother would ask her son if he had brought something back for her and each time, he would tell his old mother that, embarrassingly, he had forgotten again. Finally, halfway along his latest return journey, he suddenly remembered his mother’s request to bring back a sacred relic.

Having realised he had forgotten her request once again, as he was going along the path, he came upon the bones of a dead dog. Stopping, he plucked out a tooth, wrapped it up in silks and brought it home to his mother, saying that it was actually the tooth of Buddha Shakyamuni himself. Needless to say, his mother was in tears, absolutely overjoyed. Overwhelmed with devotion and religious fervour, she prostrated to the tooth and held it to the highest part of her body (her crown) before placing it inside a small stupa. With a lot of faith, she then invited that stupa onto her shrine along with Buddha statues.

The Buddha's relics. The merchant's mother thought that the dog's tooth her son presented to her was the Buddha's tooth, and so similarly enshrined it in a stupa. The tooth later showed miracles, a direct result of the mother's faith which allowed the Buddha's blessings to come through the tooth.

The Buddha’s relics. The merchant’s mother thought that the dog’s tooth her son presented to her was the Buddha’s tooth, and so similarly enshrined it in a stupa, making prayers, offerings and prostrations to it. The dog’s tooth later showed miracles, as a direct result of the mother’s faith which allowed the Buddha’s blessings to come through the dog’s tooth.

Every single day, the devoted mother was unfailing in making offerings of water, incense, flowers, food and so on to the Buddha’s tooth. She prayed to attain higher attainments and gain good rebirths; every single day, she prayed for her village, for her son and for herself to what she thought was the tooth of the Buddha. Any part of an enlightened being (such as the Buddha’s tooth) is considered the enlightened being as a whole, with the ability to impart upon us full blessings, and that is what she fully believed.

So every single day, that is what she did and in fact, her little house became very famous. Neighbouring villages even heard about the relic and a lot of people came along to make offerings, prayers and prostrations to the Buddha’s tooth.

When the son saw his mother’s devotion, he wanted to tell her the truth but he did not have the heart to break it to her. He had really wanted to bring a relic for her but now that all of the neighbours had found out about the tooth, it was very difficult to tell his mother the truth of its provenance. Everybody, even from neighbouring villages, really thought he had a sacred relic in his house and they were coming on a daily basis to pay homage to and get blessings from this tooth.

A few years ago, a small plant started growing from my statue of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche as you can see here. It was determined by my gurus to be a good sign. To read more about this event, please click here.

A few years ago, a small plant started growing from Tsem Rinpoche’s statue of His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche as you can see here. It was determined by Tsem Rinpoche’s gurus to be a good sign. To read more about this event, please click here.

One day however, to the son’s amazement, a small flower bloomed from the tooth in the stupa. It was a very auspicious sign that great blessings had occurred as a result of the mother’s faith and devotion to Buddha Shakyamuni.

This event went on to become a very powerful and famous story in Tibet. It shows that if we have firm, strong and consistent faith in the Buddhas and the Three Jewels, we will definitely get blessings. Even if the tooth was just a dog’s tooth and not the Buddha’s, the mother’s faith transformed the tooth into a vehicle or portal for the Buddha’s blessings. Her faith meant that the blessings of Buddha were able to come through even via the tooth of a dog.

By therefore quoting that story from the Lamrim, we can tell people today that in the remotest possibility Dorje Shugden is not an enlightened being, if we think of him as Manjushri and have devotion to him as an enlightened being, then Manjushri’s blessings will definitely override Dorje Shugden. The fact is that both Kyabje Zong Rinpoche and Trijang Rinpoche have said Manjushri emanated as Dorje Shugden. If we believe and trust our gurus, and we pray and make offerings to Dorje Shugden as the enlightened Manjushri, then the blessings of Manjushri can come through Dorje Shugden just as Buddha’s blessings can arise from a dog’s tooth. This will hold true even if Dorje Shugden is not a so-called enlightened being, as Manjushri‘s blessings can come if we believe in and trust our guru.

Knowing this makes the unethical ban on Dorje Shugden all the more shocking. Imposed in 1996 by the Tibetan leaders, they have since that time told us that those who practise Dorje Shugden must be evicted from the monasteries. In fact, according to the CTA, Dorje Shugden practitioners cannot enjoy the facilities built by the Tibetan diaspora, nor can they be a part of Tibetan mainstream society.

Dorje Shugden practitioners have to be segregated and biased against and as unbelievable and strange as it sounds, this apartheid-type ban is still intact today. There is total religious discrimination and while His Holiness the Dalai Lama would like to say that all of this is just advice and it is not a ban, we have to understand how the Tibetan community operates. In the Tibetan community, things need not be said directly; if His Holiness gives such an advice, it is the same as him giving a non-negotiable edict and it must be carried out.

Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa, both on the right, doing a puja in front of a Dorje Shugden thangka

Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa, both on the right, doing a puja in front of a Dorje Shugden thangka

Due to this ban and edict therefore, Kopan no longer practises Dorje Shugden although its establishment is intimately linked to the practice. Lama Yeshe did numerous Dorje Shugden pujas to bless the land, to build Kopan, to ask for sponsorship, and to ask for help and protection. In fact, until his passing, Lama Yeshe relied on Dorje Shugden very strongly. His student Lama Zopa was similarly devoted too, until the practice was banned by the Tibetan leadership.

Thus when Tsem Rinpoche visited Kopan back in 1987, it was at a time when Rinpoche would join Lama Zopa in doing Dorje Shugden pujas, as it was a practice given to him by his teacher. Those were the times where everyone was welcome to Kopan, and could go there for blessings and teachings. These days however, the situation has changed tremendously because of the politics of the Tibetan exiled government. As a result, Kopan and their affiliates have a policy and signs that if you practise Dorje Shugden, you are not allowed to go to Kopan Monastery or to enter their premises.

So what is incredible is that if Tsem Rinpoche wanted to visit Kopan and bring his students there for a pilgrimage, he would not be allowed to simply because he practises Dorje Shugden. Pure discrimination based on religion. It is as if everyone in the world and samsara including demons, spirits, ghosts, animals, humans, gods, demigods and hell beings are allowed to get blessings from Kopan, and only people who practise Dorje Shugden cannot experience this blessing which is ludicrous. Everyone can visit a holy temple to get blessings and imprints of Dharma…except for Dorje Shugden practitioners. Everyone should be able to visit temples and holy places because the purpose of these places is to bless the visitor. Everyone deserves a blessing no matter their race, economic background, sexual orientation, gender and religion. All the more so in Buddhism as Buddhism teaches us to embrace those different than us with compassion and understanding tolerance. Places that bar people from visiting on the basis of religious discrimination negate the purpose of their existence. It is a shame the religious politics is allowed. For sure if Buddha Shakyamuni was alive He would not approve of this.

It might not sound very Buddhist, compassionate or even spiritual but it is unfortunately the case. Under the current political climate, where politics have gotten in the way of religion, Tsem Rinpoche will not be able to visit Kopan. Tsem Rinpoche keeps an optimistic hope the ban will be lifted as he deeply loves His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He reminisces the few beautiful times he spent with Lama Zopa. While this might be a sad epilogue for the touching story that Tsem Rinpoche has recounted to us, it will not detract from Tsem Rinpoche’s ultimately beautiful experience of meeting Lama Zopa Rinpoche and receiving the initiation of the Buddha of Compassion back in 1987.

Kechara Pastors Niral Patel, Khong Jean Ai and David Lai

 

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5 Responses to Tsem Rinpoche’s moving experience with Lama Zopa in Kopan (1987)

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  1. Tsa Tsa Ong on Apr 13, 2019 at 1:29 pm

    This is a very inspiring article which i enjoyed reading. Rinpoche’s determination to receive the initiation by going through with environmental difficulties, danger, overcoming personal physical needs like hunger, etc, are good examples for us to learn from. As long as we set our mind on the objective, our mindset will be strengthened to overcome outer difficulties. Over the years, there are many ups and downs in Rinpoche’s life but all Rinpoche remembers is the kindness people have given Rinpoche. In order to repay people the kindness Rinpoche has received, Rinpoche always shows kindness to others. I sincerely pray and hope the DS ban be resolved soon. May all friendships, relationships and gurus and students be reunited soon. Thank you very much Rinpoche and blog team for sharing such an inspiring story. 🙏😘

  2. Samfoonheei on Apr 4, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this wonderful experience story of Rinpoche and Lama Zopa in Kopan. With determination and going through long journey of walking, waiting for hour and hours does not deter Rinpoche to give up . Rinpoche wanted so much to receive the1000-Armed Avalokiteshvara initiation by Lama Zopa , and that Rinpoche waited patiently pays off. Rinpoche determination to succeed is so strong that failure will never overtake and cross his path. Rinpoche is truly one example to remind us to stay on course, not give up, to persevere and persist despite obstacles and challenges.
    Lama Zopa Rinpoche is a highly attained Tibetan Buddhist master, he had picked Rinpoche among so many practitioner and offered Rinpoche a place to stay and meals even though they met for the first time. Its a wonderful experience of a lifetime.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing

  3. Stella Cheang on Mar 31, 2019 at 8:28 am

    Thank you, Rinpoche. This is a very inspiring article. Rinpoche’s determination to receive the initiation by going through with environmental difficulties, danger, overcoming personal physical needs like hunger, etc, are shining examples for us to learn from. As long as we set our mind on the objective, our mindset will be strengthened to overcome outer difficulties.

    I am also very thankful to Kushok Sangtsang Rinpoche for being kind and helpful to our Guru. He had made it less difficult for Rinpoche to be ordained. It is a very good example for me to learn up to become someone who make things easier and convenience for others.

  4. Yee Yin on Mar 31, 2019 at 3:19 am

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing with us such a nice story of Rinpoche and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Over the years, there are many ups and downs in Rinpoche’s life but all Rinpoche remembers is the kindness people have given Rinpoche. In order to repay people the kindness Rinpoche has received, Rinpoche always shows kindness to others.

    Lama Zopa must be a highly attained Buddhist master. Out of so many people, he just knew Tsem Rinpoche didn’t have a place to stay and kindly offered Rinpoche to stay in Kopan Monastery. Lama Zopa even instructed people in the monastery to help Tsem Rinpoche. If it was not because of Lama Zopa’s kind offer, Tsem Rinpoche might have to walk in the dark to go back to Boudha.

    Another thing that strikes me is Tsem Rinpoche’s determination. Tsem Rinpoche knows how precious Dharma. As a result, no matter how difficult or tough the situation is, he will overcome it. Not many people will want to walk for 3 hours with 4kgs of weight on the back to receive initiation. I think it is important for us to understand Dharma is the solution to all our problems and we should never give up Dharma practice even when things get more difficult. If we don’t try to overcome the difficulty, we will not grow to become a better person.

  5. Sofi on Mar 31, 2019 at 3:11 am

    Thank you, Rinpoche for sharing your experience here with us. I love reading or listening to Rinpoche’s experiences as Rinpoche makes them so alive for us and it is so inspiring in Rinpoche’s deep love for the Dharma as well as the great respect and devotion to the highly attained Gurus/Lamas. No matter how difficult the situation is, as shared by Rinpoche the long journey of walking in pitch black condition, scaling a cliff to reach Kopan and the cold long wait, it is all worth it to receive the initiation, to always be with good motivation and a happy mind. This is such an important state of mind to be in towards our practice of Dharma. May we always be blessed with our Guru’s long life and continual turning of the Dharma Wheel, most importantly to practice as our Guru had practiced.🙏

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  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 01:07 PM
    Inspiring story of Mahapajapati Gotami who initiated the tradition of female monastic. She was known to be the first woman to seek ordination for women. It was not easy for her to become the ordained women since it wasn’t practiced and the women were not in the equal position as men. She goes against the odds and was fortunate that she received ordination directly from the Buddha and became the first female bhikkhuni of our time. Story of Mahapajapati Gotami ,has proven that women gain attainment same as men.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this inspiring story.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/mahapajapati-gotami-the-first-buddhist-nun.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 01:06 PM
    Wonderful post for beginner’s introduction to Dorje Shugden. Many will get to understand , learn and practice it. Very details for any beginners , for most to understand the many types of dharma protectors, the benefits and the history. May more and more people get to understand Dorje Shugden’s practice better.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Wei Tan for this wonderful sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/beginners-introduction-to-dorje-shugden.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 01:05 PM
    Interesting article on Uppalavanna first time coming across this , something to add to my knowledge. Uppalavanna was considered to be one of the two chief female disciples of the Buddha. The story on Uppalavanna is not only the longest in this collection, but also the most complicated and fantastical. Many ancient tales, twists and turns about her to date, being the daughter of a wealthy merchant.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this interesting sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/uppalavanna-the-chief-female-disciple-of-buddha-shakyamuni.html
  • Ummamageswari
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 11:40 AM
    Thank you so much for this article. It is true that Rinpoche’s advice is hundred percent relevant to today’s modern lifestyles.

    Valentina, as a writer at Kechara Forest Retreat, Bentong, Pahang, Malaysia is trying her best to spread Dharma practice by sharing Rinpoche’s inspiring life story from his biography, “The Promise”, with explanation in the Indonesian language. Thank you.

    Read more: https://bit.ly/2UjT06k
  • Stella Cheang
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 11:00 AM
    The White Old Man is a well known iconic figure symbolises wisdom, longevity and to some cultures, prosperity. Therefore it is not surprising to find the worshipping of a similar While Old Man amidst Russian and Mongolia local folklores. The incorporation of the White Old Man into Buddhism goes to show that there are many shared values in the two. Most importantly the White Old Man is a source of strength and blessing to those who prayed to him, as prescribed in his prayers and mantras. Thank you for the informative sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-white-old-man-tsagan-evgen.html
  • Ummamageswari
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 10:52 AM
    Thank you so much for this article. I feel that her entry in fashion world started when she could not find the perfect props and costumes, she was given the freedom to make them herself where the experience gave her the confidence to strike out on her own as a freelance stylist in 1967.

    And the happy thing is within two years, the clothes she made garnered enough attention for her to create her own label. At the same time, she reiterates that her creativity feeds from a wider perspective and has “nothing to do with politics or war”.

    Read more: https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
  • Ummamageswari
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 10:43 AM
    Thank you so much for this article. In many article, I have came across the word ‘sadhana’, but i don’t have any idea what the word really means. Sadhana mainly helps us to achieve union with that particular Buddha-deity and that means taking on the enlightened qualities of that particular Buddha.

    Even though Rinpoche has become so exhausted where he is unable to recall whether he has done or not his sadhanas, he still makes up for it the following day. Thus, he has maintained his sadhana steadfastly, never wavering or giving up on his practice.

    Read more: https://bit.ly/2HCqx3G
  • Pastor Lanse
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 08:11 AM
    The Sacred Vajrayogini of Ratsag Monastery

    Some oral accounts said that Ratsag monastery is a founded by Ra Lotsawa who introduced Yamantaka Tantra to Tibet. This monastery used to house a very special Vajrayogini statue which is the personal vajrayogini statue of Mahasiddha Naropa, the founder of Naro Kacho lineage. The statue is widely regarded as sacred not only because it is said to have self-arisen during Buddha Shakyamuni’s lifetime, but also because it has the power to “liberate through seeing” means that the statue is so powerful, it can change the course of the person’s results who is praying to it for a better outcome. The dakinis later offered the statue to the Mahasiddha Naropa and it became his principal object of worship.

    https://bit.ly/2PqY9Tt
  • Yee Yin
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 04:48 AM
    The Baba Nyonya, also known as Peranakan or Straits-Chinese, are the descendants of Chinese immigrants who married and assimilated into local communities in Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia between the fifteenth and seventeenth centuries. They have their own unique culture compared to traditional Chinese culture. Their language, food and custom is a mixture of Chinese and local Malays. In Malaysia, you can find them in Malacca and Penang.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/malaysia/baba-and-nyonya.html
  • Chris Chong
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 04:45 AM
    Thank you, Rinpoche and the blog team for this excellent article. From this article, we can clearly see the struggle of female monastic in Thailand and the challenges they face in their daily lives. Even though the problem of female ordination in Thailand seems to be a religious issue, it is in fact more complicated that it seems.

    It is inspiring to see courageous nuns that fight against social norms to be ordained. They are literally fighting for their spirituality. People like Venerable Dhammananda and Venerable Dr Lee fought against all odds to set up their monastery in Thailand and began the tradition of ordaining women.

    Even after Venerable Dr Lee’s monastery was attacked several times, she refused to leave the country against the advise of the embassy. She is willing to risk her life to take care of the spirituality of the nuns who are in her monastery. She is a true following of Buddha’s teachings which is to be selfless.

    http://bit.ly/2ZjZBLY
  • Yee Yin
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 04:43 AM
    Bigfoot, Yeti, Sasquatch and Migo are some of the names of the creature that was once known as the ‘Abominable Snowman’. This hairy and bipedal creature is known to roam the Himalayas (and many other regions around the world) and evaded mankind for thousands of years. In Tibetan Buddhism, it is believed that Bigfoot or Yeti serves the lamas by helping them to deliver messages. They are very mystical and mysterious, learn more about them here:

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/yeti-bigfoot-sasquatch/hunting-for-the-yeti.html
  • Yee Yin
    Saturday, Jun 15. 2019 04:37 AM
    Thank you Joy for sharing with us your experience with Rinpoche over the years. This photo is simply magical. We cannot see supernatural phenomena with our naked eyes but the camera somehow managed to capture it. What we cannot see or perceive does not mean it is not real.

    I have read some article on Rinpoche’s blog that explains how if we hold our vows and also keep our Samaya clean we will be able to get the blessings from the Buddha to help us in our practice. With the blessings of the Buddhas, our prayers will become powerful and we will be able to help others.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/rinpoche-through-my-eyes-invoking-the-buddhas-to-come-forth
  • S.Prathap
    Friday, Jun 14. 2019 03:11 PM
    Thank you for sharing this pictures. I can imagine how suffer is their life. For those children who are living in a good condition, we can know their thought by observing their room, so is very important for the parents to pay attention on the children room. It is heart breaking to see these unfortunate young children living in such a harsh condition .Once again thanks for reminding us how important to appreciating what we have .

    https://bit.ly/2KRpYEO
  • Balachandran
    Friday, Jun 14. 2019 10:55 AM
    இந்த பூமியை யாரும் உரிமை கொண்டாட முடியாது. தன் முடிவை அறியாத மனிதன் இந்த பூமி தனது என்ற எண்னத்தில் மற்ற உயிரினங்களை வாழவிடாமல் வதைக்கிறான், புசிக்கிறான்.

    கொரிய நாட்டில் நாய் இறைச்சியை உண்பவர்கள் அதிகமாக இருக்கிறார்கள். அந்த நாட்டில் நாய்கள் இறைச்சிக்காகவே வளர்க்கப்பட்டு கடைகளுக்கு விற்கப்படுகிறது. கடைகளில் நாய்கள் சிறிய கூண்டில் அடைக்கப்பட்டு, தலையில் அடிக்கப்பட்டு . கத்தியால் வெட்டப்பட்டு, உயிரோடு நெருப்பில் வாட்டப்பட்டு உணவுக்காக கொல்லப்படுகிறது. நாய்களை இப்படி சித்திரவதை செய்து கொல்கிறார்கள்.

    மிருக வதை இயக்கங்களாலும், அங்குள்ளவர்களின் மன மாற்றத்தாலும், இன்றைய இளைய தலைமுறையின் எதிர்ப்பின் விளைவினாலும் கொரிய நட்டில் நாய் இறைச்சிகள் விற்கும் கடைகள் மூடப்படும் என்ற செய்தி வெளியாகியிருக்கிறது. இது நமக்கெல்லாம் சந்தோசமான செய்தியாக அமைகிறது என்பதில் ஐயமில்லை.

    இந்த செய்தியை நம் பார்வைக்குக் கொண்டுவந்தது,
    தி செம் ரென்போச்சே அவர்கள்
  • Balachandran
    Friday, Jun 14. 2019 10:31 AM
    பிராணிகள் எல்லாம் மனிதனின் அடிமை என்று எண்ணி, அவற்றைக் கூண்டில் அடைத்து, சித்திரவதைச் செய்து கொன்று தனது உணவாக்கிக்கொள்கிறான்மனிதன். ஒவ்வொரு நாளும் பல ஆயிரக்கணக்கான பிராணிகளின் உயிர்கள் மனித உணவுக்காக பலியாகின்றன. பிராணிகளுக்கும் உணர்வுகள் இருக்கிறது என்று தெரிந்தே அவற்றைக் கொலை செய்கிறான். இது எவ்வளவு ஒழுக்கமற்ற செயல். சிந்திப்போம் வாரீர்.

    இந்த பரந்த உலகத்தில் பிராணிகளும் வாழ வழி விடுவோம். அவைகளிடத்து அன்பு செலுத்துவோம். இயற்கையைப் போற்றுவோம் இன்பமாய் வாழ்வோம்.

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

Messages from Rinpoche

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

Tsem Rinpoche

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Animal Care Fund
  Bigfoot, Yeti, Sasquatch

The Unknown

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

Photos On The Go

Click on the images to view the bigger version. And scroll down and click on "View All Photos" to view more images.
See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
18 hours 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
3 days ago
Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
1 week 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
1 week 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
1 week 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
1 week 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 weeks 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 weeks ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 weeks ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
3 weeks ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha\'s mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
3 weeks ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha's mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha\'s. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
3 weeks ago
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha's. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
3 weeks ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
3 weeks ago
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
This is pretty amazing!

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

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
3 weeks 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
4 weeks 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
4 weeks 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
4 weeks 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
4 weeks 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
1 month ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
1 month ago
Silver Manjusri figure from Ngemplak Semongan (Indonesia). Apparently during the Shailendra Dynasty, Mahayana Buddhism was very strong in Indonesia. This Dynasty promoted Mahayana Buddhism and Manjushri was a principal Buddha of worship.
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
1 month ago
In Buddhism: The Importance of Having a Clean Room- https://bit.ly/2ZgrbKS
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
1 month ago
There is an area near Lumbini, Nepal, they have sightings of Yeti for hundreds of years. So they have signages in the area with Yeti artwork to highlight this. Interesting. TR
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
1 month ago
Photos of footprints (Yeti) are from a high altitude pass (Darwa Pass) connecting Gangotri valley to Yamunotri valley through old pilgrim route.
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
1 month ago
Beautiful picture. Rare. Three holy beings.
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden\'s grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
1 month ago
May 1, 2019-I really enjoy this picture of these visitors visiting Dorje Shugden's grotto in Kechara Forest Retreat today. They look happy, light and blessed after doing their prayers to Dorje Shugden. I wanted to share this picture.- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
A postcard of my great grand aunt Princess Nirgidma of Torghut-Tsem Rinpoche
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
2 months ago
Rei Kawakubo – Grand Dame of ‘Hiroshima Chic’- https://bit.ly/2Vz4N06
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
Just now, this beautiful grape and orange infused water drink with a blue glass was brought in for me. I was amazed at the colors. Tsem Rinpoche
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche 

www.tsemrinpoche.com
2 months ago
We have to look in and change from within to find the way out of all that makes us unhappy.~Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
2 months ago
文冬野人咖啡厅开张了!- https://bit.ly/2IRGdBM
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
2 months ago
Click on this picture and read about this very sad girl. Please offer your prayers for her to take a good rebirth. Tsem Rinpoche
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
2 months ago
Bigfoot cafe in Bentong, Malaysia-Delicious vegetarian food in a beautiful setting- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
Tsem Rinpoche\'s personal shrine.
2 months ago
Tsem Rinpoche's personal shrine.
In Kechara Forest Retreat- Bentong, Malaysia, we have a beautiful outdoor offering grotto dedicated to Lord Dorje Shugden who fulfills the wishes of many visitors- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
2 months ago
In Kechara Forest Retreat- Bentong, Malaysia, we have a beautiful outdoor offering grotto dedicated to Lord Dorje Shugden who fulfills the wishes of many visitors- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Guhya Manjushri of the Forbidden City| 密德文殊室利佛- https://bit.ly/2J3HIvM
2 months ago
Guhya Manjushri of the Forbidden City| 密德文殊室利佛- https://bit.ly/2J3HIvM
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

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    2 weeks ago
    She’s going to spend her whole life here without being able to move correctly. Like a machine. They are the slaves of the people and are viewed as a product. It’s immoral. Billions of terrestrial animals die annually. Billions. You can’t even imagine it. And all that because people don’t want to give up meat, even though there are so many alternatives. ~ Gabriel Azimov
  • Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This is the first time His Holiness Dalai Lama mentions he had some very serious illness. Very worrying. This video is captured April 2019.
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    2 months ago
    Beautiful Monastery in Hong Kong
  • This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    This dog thanks his hero in such a touching way. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
    2 months ago
    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
  • These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
    2 months ago
    Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
  • Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
    3 months ago
    Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
  • Beautiful
    3 months ago
    Beautiful
    Beautiful sacred Severed Head Vajra Yogini from Tsem Rinpoche's personal shrine.
  • My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
  • Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 months ago
    Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
    4 months ago
    Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    5 months ago
    SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    Tsem Rinpoche's dog Oser girl enjoying her snack in her play pen.
  • Cute!
    5 months ago
    Cute!
    Oser girl loves the balcony so much. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
  • Uncle Wong
    5 months ago
    Uncle Wong
    We were told by Uncle Wong he is very faithful toward Dorje Shugden. Dorje Shugden has extended help to him on several occasions and now Uncle Wong comes daily to make incense offerings to Dorje Shugden. He is grateful towards the help he was given.
  • Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
    5 months ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
  • Cute baby owl found and rescued
    5 months ago
    Cute baby owl found and rescued
    We rescued a lost baby owl in Kechara Forest Retreat.
  • Nice cups from Kechara!!
    6 months ago
    Nice cups from Kechara!!
    Dorje Shugden people's lives matter!
  • Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    6 months ago
    Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Chirping birds and other forest animals create a joyful melody at the Vajrayogini stupa in Kechara Forest Retreat (Bentong, Malaysia).
  • His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche makes offering of khata to Dorje Shugden.
    6 months ago
    His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche makes offering of khata to Dorje Shugden.
    Trijang Rinpoche never gave up his devotion to Dorje Shugden no matter how much Tibetan government in exile pressured him to give up. He stayed loyal inspiring so many of us.
  • Very rare video of His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche the 10th, the all knowing and compassionate one. I pay deep respects to this attained being who has taken many rebirths since the time of Lord Buddha to be of benefit to sentient beings tirelessly. Tsem Rinpoche
    6 months ago
    Very rare video of His Holiness Panchen Rinpoche the 10th, the all knowing and compassionate one. I pay deep respects to this attained being who has taken many rebirths since the time of Lord Buddha to be of benefit to sentient beings tirelessly. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This bigfoot researcher gives good reasonings on bigfoot. Interesting short video.
    6 months ago
    This bigfoot researcher gives good reasonings on bigfoot. Interesting short video.
  • His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Shartse Monastery was one of the teachers of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Here in this beautiful video is Geshe Kelsang Gyatso showing his centre to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, then proceeding to sit down to receive teachings. For more information- https://bit.ly/2QNac1u
    6 months ago
    His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Shartse Monastery was one of the teachers of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Here in this beautiful video is Geshe Kelsang Gyatso showing his centre to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, then proceeding to sit down to receive teachings. For more information- https://bit.ly/2QNac1u
  • This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    2 yearss ago
    This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    This video is thought-provoking and very interesting. Watch! Thanks so much to our friends at LIVEKINDLY.
  • Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
    2 yearss ago
    Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
  • BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
    2 yearss ago
    BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
  • Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
    2 yearss ago
    Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
  • Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
    2 yearss ago
    Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
  • Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    2 yearss ago
    This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    she received “one last visit from an old friend” 💔💔
  • Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
    2 yearss ago
    Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
  • Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
    2 yearss ago
    Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
  • Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant  Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
    2 yearss ago
    Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
  • Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
    2 yearss ago
    Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
  • Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
    Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
  • What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    2 yearss ago
    What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    Sick animals are more profitable... farms calculate how close to death they can keep animals without killing them. That's the business model. How quickly they can be made to grow, how tightly they can be packed, how much or how little can they eat, how sick they can get without dying... We live in a world in which it's conventional to treat an animal like a block of wood. ~ Jonathan Safran Foer
  • This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
    2 yearss ago
    This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
  • SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    2 yearss ago
    SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    This happens daily in slaughterhouse so you can get your pork and Bak ku teh. Stop eating meat.

ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

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

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

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View All Questions

CHAT PICTURES

Join us this weekend for the Spiritual Saturday Programme in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 15 JUNE: 7.00 am - 9 am: KFR Pilgrimage 9.00 am - 10.45 am: Design & string malas (Tibetan rosaries) 11.00 am - 12.30 pm: Rinpoche's Recommendations - Liz Taylor 12.30 pm - 2.30 pm: Lunch @ MGH INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!) contact us at least two days in advance. Call +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See you Saturday! More info: bit.ly/2X6FpML
2 days ago
Join us this weekend for the Spiritual Saturday Programme in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 15 JUNE: 7.00 am - 9 am: KFR Pilgrimage 9.00 am - 10.45 am: Design & string malas (Tibetan rosaries) 11.00 am - 12.30 pm: Rinpoche's Recommendations - Liz Taylor 12.30 pm - 2.30 pm: Lunch @ MGH INTERESTED? To RSVP your place (and your meal!) contact us at least two days in advance. Call +6017 965 9484 (WhatsApp) retreat@kechara.com See you Saturday! More info: bit.ly/2X6FpML
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
2 days ago
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
2 days ago
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
2 days ago
We are very blessed to be here in Kechara Forest Retreat as we work to preserve the sacred lineage of Dorje Shugden and we wish to share Dorje Shugden’s blessings with the world. http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
A big thanks to Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur for sponsoring and serving lunch yesterday to our street friends. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 days ago
A big thanks to Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur for sponsoring and serving lunch yesterday to our street friends. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Rejoice for the Dorje Shugden works and archives in Kechara Forest Retreat! The new signage is dedicated to all the beautiful Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world for over 350 years, who have kept their commitment to their teachers to practice and hold the lineage, and share the lineage with others. Read here: http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
5 days ago
Rejoice for the Dorje Shugden works and archives in Kechara Forest Retreat! The new signage is dedicated to all the beautiful Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world for over 350 years, who have kept their commitment to their teachers to practice and hold the lineage, and share the lineage with others. Read here: http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
Rejoice for the Dorje Shugden works and archives in Kechara Forest Retreat! The new signage is dedicated to all the beautiful Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world for over 350 years, who have kept their commitment to their teachers to practice and hold the lineage, and share the lineage with others. Read here: http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
5 days ago
Rejoice for the Dorje Shugden works and archives in Kechara Forest Retreat! The new signage is dedicated to all the beautiful Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world for over 350 years, who have kept their commitment to their teachers to practice and hold the lineage, and share the lineage with others. Read here: http://bit.ly/2Mzm9qq
Our food bank distribution activities throughout the #HariRaya week. Couldn\'t thank the volunteers and everyone from Tesco Malaysia and AEON Retail Malaysia for the great cooperation to help make sure everything is ok on the supplying side. Their professionalism is second to none and that enabled our team to collect and disseminate the food in an orderly manner. #KecharaFoodBank #foodbank #HungerKnowsNoBarriers #Perak #Volunteers - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 days ago
Our food bank distribution activities throughout the #HariRaya week. Couldn't thank the volunteers and everyone from Tesco Malaysia and AEON Retail Malaysia for the great cooperation to help make sure everything is ok on the supplying side. Their professionalism is second to none and that enabled our team to collect and disseminate the food in an orderly manner. #KecharaFoodBank #foodbank #HungerKnowsNoBarriers #Perak #Volunteers - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 days ago
Pastor Han Nee blessing the birds during animal liberation before releasing them. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Pastor Han Nee blessing the birds during animal liberation before releasing them. Lin Mun KSDS
So wonderful to have parents and children participating in monthly animal liberation in Kechara House
1 week ago
So wonderful to have parents and children participating in monthly animal liberation in Kechara House
Teacher Laura and teacher Asyley guided children to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Teacher Laura and teacher Asyley guided children to do prostration. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Kien sharing Rinpoche’s book The Promise during dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Teacher Kien sharing Rinpoche’s book The Promise during dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Thanks for continuous supporting on recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Thanks for continuous supporting on recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
We received a few electrical items that were sent here for recycling purposes. KEP- Serena
1 week ago
We received a few electrical items that were sent here for recycling purposes. KEP- Serena
Recycling day at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
1 week ago
Recycling day at Kechara Soup Kitchen. KEP-Serena
‪It is so lovely to see Kar Leng and family volunteer regularly under Kechara Food Bank programme. #Kechara #foodbank #family ‬- Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 week ago
‪It is so lovely to see Kar Leng and family volunteer regularly under Kechara Food Bank programme. #Kechara #foodbank #family ‬- Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
2 weeks ago
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
2 weeks ago
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more on Dorje Shugden here: Dorje Shugden – The Protector of Our Time https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugden.html - picture courtesy Wong Yenpin
2 weeks ago
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more on Dorje Shugden here: Dorje Shugden – The Protector of Our Time https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugden.html - picture courtesy Wong Yenpin
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
2 weeks ago
Visit Kechara Forest Retreat for manyfold blessings by the Buddhas! Open daily from 10am till 5pm. Read more here: https://www.kecharaforestretreat.com - picture courtesy by Wong Yenpin
These are some of the regular faces in our Saturday night kitchen distribution. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 weeks ago
These are some of the regular faces in our Saturday night kitchen distribution. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
We are thankful to have volunteers coming in to help out with food distribution on weekdays. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 weeks ago
We are thankful to have volunteers coming in to help out with food distribution on weekdays. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - And many more stunning photos to view - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 weeks ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - And many more stunning photos to view - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - Find many more stunning photos to view - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 weeks ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - Find many more stunning photos to view - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
The Promise
  These books will change your life
  Tsem Rinpoche's Long Life Prayer by H.H. Trijang Choktrul Rinpoche
  Support Blog Team
Lamps For Life
  Robe Offerings
  Vajrayogini Stupa Fund
  White Tara Mantra Bank Project
  Rinpoche's Medical Fund
  Dana Offerings
  Soup Kitchen Project
 
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Dorje Shugden
Click to watch my talk about Dorje Shugden....