Four Sacred Sites of Vajra Yogini in Nepal

Jul 12, 2018 | Views: 20,581

The various forms of Vajra Yogini in the Bidjeswori Temple of Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

Each enlightened being in the vast Tibetan Buddhist pantheon represents a unique method or path towards Enlightenment. Amongst all of these deities who lead us to Enlightenment, there are none that can be compared to Vajra Yogini in terms of efficacy and expediency of practice. This has been famously said by many high lamas, including Lama Yeshe who quoted the Chakrasamvara Tantras that attributed Vajra Yogini’s supreme mantra to be the King of Mantras. This means that if you have the initiation and practice of Vajra Yogini, you will not need to recite any other mantras. If your vows and commitments are intact, you can gain spiritual attainments through the mere recitation of her mantra, even if you do not engage in any accompanying visualisations. No other Tantric deity’s mantra or practice can boast of such efficacy.

An old thangka of Chakrasamvara. Click on image to enlarge.

An old thangka of Chakrasamvara. Click on image to enlarge.

Like many great Tantric traditions, the practice of Vajra Yogini has divine origins and according to the various great masters who beheld visions of her, thus arose the various traditions and forms of Vajra Yogini that we rely upon today. In Kechara for example, we rely upon the form of Vajra Yogini that originally arose from a pure vision beheld by the great Indian master and scholar Naropa, who was renowned for having given up everything in order to seek out his master Tilopa. After countless years of struggle, Naropa met his teacher and became thoroughly devoted to him. It was only after years of trials and tribulations that Tilopa initiated his disciple Naropa into the sindhura mandala of Vajravarahi, perhaps the earliest lineage of the Vajra Yogini practice. Naropa was subsequently sent off to meditate and it is said that in six months, he achieved Mahamudra-siddhi and beheld Vajravarahi in the aspect that we know today as Vajra Yogini Naro Kechari (Naro Kachö in Tibetan).

A thangka of Mahasiddha Naropa with his yidam, Vajra Yogini on the top left and smaller figures of his Nepali disciples, the Phamthingpa brothers. Click on image to enlarge.

In his lifetime, Naropa had a multitude of great disciples, many of whom were attained and illustrious figures of India, Tibet and Nepal. However, for the great Vajra Yogini lineage of Naro Kachö that arose from his pure vision, Naropa bestowed it on two brothers from Pharping, Nepal. The eldest, named Vagisvarakirti (Tibetan: Jigme Dragpa), studied under Naropa for nine years and the youngest, named Bodhibhadra (Tibetan: Dus ‘Khorba), studied under Naropa for five years. Within the lineage of masters who transmitted the Vajra Yogini teachings, they are commonly referred to together as the Phamthingpa brothers.

From these two brothers, Vajra Yogini was proliferated all over Nepal. They also taught the practice to Melgyo Lotsawa Lodro Drakpa (Mal Lotsawa), an early Sakya translator who brought the practice to Tibet. As a result, innumerable masters and ordinary disciples held Vajra Yogini as a secret Tantric practice for centuries. Due to his great attainments, Vagisvarakirti (the elder Phamthingpa brother) himself also beheld a vision of Vajra Yogini and that became the heart image of the Pharping Vajra Yogini that we see today in Nepal, along with many other sacred temples and sites.

Therefore, the connection between this Highest Yoga Tantra deity and the Himalayan kingdom of Nepal began with Mahasiddha Naropa and the Phamthingpa brothers, and Vajra Yogini’s practice eventually became immensely popular across the country.

The holy statue of Mahasiddha Naropa found within his meditation cave near Pashupatinath in Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

Naropa is said to have abided in several places in Nepal including Sankhu, famous for being an ancient Vajra Yogini power place. Today, there are five main Vajra Yogini power places in Nepal and, including Sankhu, they are Pharping, Patan, Bidjeswori and Guhyeshwari. The first four accept visitors from all over the world, while Guhyeshwari remains the only Vajra Yogini sacred power place that does not permit foreign visitors.

It is highly recommended that all who wish to be connected with Vajra Yogini or wish to practise her Tantra should travel to these temples to offer powerful prayers and aspirations alongside many types of offerings. In visiting these power places, we gain the blessings of Vajra Yogini regardless of which form of Vajra Yogini is enshrined within, as they are all just different manifestations of the same enlightened being that showed a quick path towards liberation.

 

VIDEO: Tilopa & Naropa Caves Beside the
Pashupatinath Temple, Kathmandu, Nepal

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

 

Why Pilgrimage

A pilgrimage should not be treated just like any other holiday filled with only normal tourist activities like sightseeing and shopping. The purpose of visiting holy sites on a pilgrimage is to further our spiritual practice and to realign ourselves onto the path to Enlightenment.

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa, located about 11km away from the centre of Kathmandu.

In a teaching on the significance of pilgrimages, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche explained that everything holy beings own or use, including the area they live or practise in, is entirely for the benefit of other beings. Therefore the sites where holy beings reside, practise and benefit countless beings become imbued with the everlasting energies of the compassionate, enlightened mind. Hence pilgrimages are an opportunity for us to connect with the sacred energies of these places where holy beings have chosen to take rebirth, gain Enlightenment, teach the Dharma or pass into parinirvana.

When we go to these places, show reverence, make offerings and aspirational prayers, we create the direct causes to attain this same state of compassion and to gain the same enlightened qualities that these beings had. The Buddhist tradition of going on pilgrimages began with Buddha Shakyamuni himself, who advised that after he passed away, disciples should visit the four main sites of his birth (Lumbini, Nepal), Enlightenment (Bodhgaya, India), first turning of the wheel of Dharma (Sarnath, India) and parinirvana (Kushinagar, India) and make aspirational prayers there. He advised that all Buddhas of the past had manifested there, and all Buddhas of the future will also manifest there. By visiting these places, we make a very deep connection to these Buddhas so that we might realise our own inner Buddhahood. This will help our spiritual practice in this and future lives greatly.

Lumbini, the birthplace of the legendary Buddha Shakyamuni.

Lumbini, the birthplace of the legendary Buddha Shakyamuni.

The karmic significance of visiting these four holy sites are further broken down as follows:

  1. When we go on pilgrimage to the Buddha’s birthplace: We create the karma to have control of our own rebirth; to be reborn in pleasant places where we will have the right conditions and opportunities to practise Dharma.
  2. When we visit the place where Buddha attained Enlightenment: Karmic seeds are planted in our mindstreams for us to also gain Enlightenment; we go towards the path of Enlightenment in all future lifetimes; even if we fail to attain Enlightenment within Buddha Shakyamuni’s age, we create the causes to be among the foremost disciples of Maitreya, the future Buddha, when he manifests.
  3. When we visit the place where Buddha first taught the Dharma: We create the karma
    • for the Dharma to really penetrate deep into our minds and we are able to transform our minds when we receive the teachings,
    • to be able to sponsor, propagate and put our energy towards the growth of Dharma,
    • to be able to speak and share Dharma with others and to transform their lives.
  4. When we visit the place where Buddha passed away: We create the causes to increase our lifespan in order to engage in deeper spiritual practices and gain Enlightenment; we will not die ordinary deaths with fear or anxiety, and we create the causes to have control over our death and rebirth.

The day when Buddha Shakyamuni entered into Paranirvana is depicted in this beautiful painting. Click on image to enlarge. Click here to see more paintings.

Buddha Shakyamuni gave these teachings and if we follow them, they can bring us to Enlightenment. Similarly, all those who have followed the Buddha’s teachings in the past have gained attainments and become enlightened, just like him. Therefore, visiting their holy sites is equivalent to visiting Buddha Shakyamuni’s holy sites because the enlightened mind and its energies are all the same.

When embarking on a pilgrimage, all pilgrims are encouraged to contemplate on the selfless motivation and actions of all holy beings, and on their deeply compassionate wish to constantly serve others. By meditating on this and making aspirational prayers to attain these qualities, we forge an incredible connection with the enlightened beings that is carried forward in this and all future lives, spiritual work and practice.

 

Why Vajra Yogini?

Vajra Yogini is the consort of Heruka and her incredible, efficacious Tantra was first expounded by Vajradhara within the 47th and 48th chapter of the Heruka Root Tantra. She is a Highest Yoga Tantra yidam (meditational deity; ishtadevata in Sanskrit) and is considered to be one of the most important deities in the Tibetan pantheon simply because her practice is the easiest.

Vajra Yogini and Heruka. Click on image to enlarge.

Heruka and Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

Therefore, her Tantra is considered to be the most suitable for people of these degenerate times when desire is the strongest energy. The reason for Vajra Yogini’s efficacy lies in her ability to transform ordinary desire energy into great bliss, a quality necessary on the Tantric path to Enlightenment. Hence, she is seen as being ideally suited for people of this day and age because she provides the method to transform desire energy into enlightened virtue.

Vajra Yogini’s practice contains special instructions to transform all ordinary daily experiences into higher spiritual paths; and the prevention of ordinary death, intermediate state (bardo) and rebirth by transforming them into paths towards Enlightenment. It is stated in the Heruka Tantras that it is possible to achieve spiritual attainments by merely reciting Vajra Yogini’s mantra if our vows are intact, along with our spiritual commitments to our lama, known as samaya.

 

VIDEO: H.E. Tsem Rinpoche on Vajra Yogini

 

The History and Lineage of the Five Forms of Vajra Yogini

It is said that Vajradhara manifested as Heruka Chakrasamvara in order to transmit and elaborate on the practice of Vajra Yogini. While all lineages of Vajra Yogini can be scripturally traced back to this original text, the subsequent lineages of her practice can be attributed to various great Indian masters of the past. Although there are innumerable lineages of Vajra Yogini, five main lineages are diffused within Tibetan Buddhism.

 

1. Vajravarahi (Indra Kachö)

One of the oldest and perhaps the earliest lineage of Vajra Yogini’s practice is the Indra Kachö or Indra Kechari lineage of Vajra Yogini. This lineage is also commonly known as the ‘Adamantine Sow’ or Vajravarahi; in Tibetan, this form of Vajra Yogini is known as ‘Dorje Phagmo’.

A depiction of Vajravarahi or also known as Indra Kacho. Click on image to enlarge.

A depiction of Vajravarahi, also known as Indra Kachö. Click on image to enlarge.

Vajra Yogini in her Indra Kachö form stands in the dynamic posture of a great vajra dance, with one foot stomping on Maha Ishvara representing great ignorance and the other leg raised in dance. Her right hand wields a curved knife up to the side and her left hand holds a skullcup at the level of her heart. She is sometimes depicted with the prominent face of a sow protruding from above her right ear; at other times, the sow protrudes from the crown of her head. The sow represents the transmutation of ignorance into the transcendent experience of great bliss and Emptiness.

This ancient lineage of Vajra Yogini can be traced all the way back to Indrabodhi or Indrabhuti, who received the practice from his guru, the Mahasiddha Lawapa also sometimes referred to as the Mahasiddha Kambalapada. The name Indra Kachö literally means that this form of Vajra Yogini was practised by Indrabodhi and so the lineage took his name. According to tradition, Indrabodhi was a king who ruled the kingdom of Sambhola, one of the two kingdoms in the land of the dakinis, Oddiyana. King Jalendra ruled the other non-Buddhist kingdom of Lankapuri. Although there was peace in the land, a propitious marriage was arranged to unite the two kingdoms and so a betrothal took place between Princess Laksminkara, the sister of King Indrabodhi, and the son of King Jalendra.

Map of Oddiyana. Click on image to enlarge.

A map of Oddiyana. Click on image to enlarge.

Princess Laksminkara was just 16 years old when she was escorted to her new home with great pomp and ceremony. Prior to this, she had been practising the sadhana (daily meditational prayers and visualisations) that she had received from her guru and, driven by great renunciation, she was loathe to be bound by her new royal duties. In fact, the moment she arrived in her husband’s kingdom, a deep revulsion for the material world overcame her. She locked herself in her room, tore her clothes and seemed to be overcome with madness. One night, she escaped from the palace and went into the mountains to live in a cave and meditate. There, she is said to have gained Enlightenment (mahamudra-siddhi) and she began preaching the Buddha’s teachings to latrine sweepers and other outcasts of the kingdom.

From the time of her arrival, Princess Laksminkara’s outrageous behaviour brought much shame and trouble for her new royal family-in-law. King Jalendra immediately sent for King Indrabodhi to speak with his sister. However, King Indrabodhi realised that his sister had gained attainments and he himself felt the utmost shame for living a life surrounded by ease and comfort. And while his sister had realised the nature of existence, he had realised nothing and merely ruled his country.

A depiction of Princess Laksminkara. Click on image to enlarge.

A depiction of Princess Laksminkara. Click on image to enlarge.

Thereafter, King Indrabodhi resolved to follow in his sister’s path. After the coronation of his son as the new king, he retired to a small palace where he practised his sadhana for 12 years, finally achieving full Enlightenment himself.

One day, his son came to visit Indrabodhi, accompanied by those who loved the old king. As they were about to enter the palace, a loud voice boomed from over their heads. Looking up, they saw Indrabodhi floating in the air while seated on a magnificent throne.

Everyone prostrated to Indrabodhi and it is said that for seven days, he remained floating in the air while giving teachings to his son and friends on the doctrine of ‘inconceivable profundity and immensity’. On the eighth day, he ascended to Kechara Paradise with 700 disciples. Therefore, according to tradition, the Indra Kachö lineage of Vajra Yogini is one of the teachings that is attributed to the great king Indrabodhi.

 

2. Uddhapada Vajra Yogini (Maitri Kachö)

A thangka of Uddhapada Vajra Yogini, also known as Maitri Kachö Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

Another famous lineage of Vajra Yogini’s practice is the Maitri Kachö or Maitri Kechari lineage. This lineage extends all the way back to the great Indian Mahasiddha Maitripa. It is also known as the Uddhapada Vajra Yogini or ‘One Leg Up’ Vajra Yogini lineage.

Uddhapada Vajra Yogini has her sacred body in a yogic posture with her right leg bent behind her at the knee. Her left arm, holding a skullcup, pulls her left leg up high against her breast while her right arm, holding a curved knife, is flung out behind her, above the sole of her right foot. In the crook of her left arm, she cradles a khatvanga which rests on her left shoulder.

Uddhapada Vajra Yogini arose from a vision beheld by the Mahasiddha Maitripa (1007-1078 CE). Maitripa was once a monk who studied at both the great monastic institutions of Nalanda and Vikramashila. While he was at Nalanda, he studied under the famous teacher Naropa, who was then known as the great scholar Abhayakirti.

An image of Maitri Kacho Vajra Yogini from the Rinjung Gyatsa set of initiation. Click to enlarge.

An image of Uddhapada Vajra Yogini or Maitri Kachö Vajra Yogini from the Rinjung Gyatsa set of initiations. Click to enlarge.

Later, Maitripa studied in Vikramashila under the abbotship of the great master Atisha. However, he was expelled because of his controversial behaviour that contravened monastic rules. After leaving the monastery, he took up the practices of a wandering ascetic.

It was then that he met the great mahasiddha Shavaripa and became his student, receiving from him special instructions on Mahamudra. Maitripa went on to become known as a highly-accomplished adept of the Buddhist Tantric system and was renowned for passing the Mahamudra lineage and practice to the legendary Tibetan translator Marpa Chokyi Lodro, who in turn became the master of Jetsun Milarepa.

 

3. Vidyadhari Vajra Yogini (Flying Vajra Yogini)

Vidyadhari Vajra Yogini also known as Flying Vajra Yogini. Click to enlarge.

Vidyadhari Vajra Yogini also known as Flying Vajra Yogini. Click to enlarge.

Vajra Yogini in mid-flight is known as Vidyadhari, which literally means ‘Knowledge Holder’. This name in the Nepali language is ‘Bidjeswori’. Hence, her main shrine in Nepal which is located by the banks of the Bisnumati River is also called Bidjeswori. There is also another very sacred shrine to her at the Mahaboudha Stupa in Patan.

Vidyadhari Vajra Yogini appears to be flying with her legs pulled apart in mid-stride towards the sky. Therefore, she is also known as Akash Vajra Yogini, literally ‘Sky-Going’ or ‘Flying Vajra Yogini’. Her right arm is stretched behind her, holding a curved cemetery knife (drigug). She cradles a khatvanga in the crook of her arm, resting it on her left shoulder while holding a skullcup with the same hand. In some depictions, her left leg is placed on her left arm or shoulder.

This form of Vajra Yogini is known to be a variant of the vision beheld by the Mahasiddha Maitripa and is sometimes known in Tibetan as Maitri Kachö as well. In general however, the name Maitri Kachö is usually reserved for Uddhapada Vajra Yogini.

 

4. Sukhasiddhi Dakini

This form of Vajra Yogini is known as the White Khechari. The practice arose from the 11th Century Indian yogini Sukhasiddhi. After she gained Enlightenment, she appeared to others in various forms. She is traditionally depicted as a dakini who holds a skullcup in one hand, points to the sky with the other and is white in colour. However, in her secret yidam aspect as White Khechari, she is depicted differently.

The practice of White Khechari was disseminated by the Tibetan master Khyungpo Naljor (1050-1140 CE) and was eventually incorporated into the Shangpa Kagyu lineage.

Sukhasiddhi. Click on image to enlarge.

Sukhasiddhi Dakini. Click on image to enlarge.

Vajra Yogini’s form according to this lineage is that of a youthful 16-year-old who bears an expression that combines the sentiments of passion and wrath. She has three piercing eyes and her mouth opens ever so slightly, revealing her white teeth, four sharp fangs and twisting red tongue. White in colour, she sits in the posture of giving birth with her legs spread apart, thereby exposing her sacred secret organ. Her naked form is adorned with bone ornaments and a garland of 50 freshly severed heads. Just like the other forms of Vajra Yogini, she holds a curved knife in her right hand and a skullcup in her left. Her loose black hair flows freely down her back.

The yogini Sukhasiddhi was originally from Kashmir, where she was a kind but impoverished mother of six children. One day, she mistakenly gave away her last bag of rice to a wandering beggar, thinking that her family would return with more food. However, when they returned empty-handed, her own family chased her away in anger. Distraught, she wandered about until she found herself in Oddiyana where she began to earn a living as a brewer of rice beer. It was also in Oddiyana that she gained the allegiance of a female disciple of the famous Indian Mahasiddha Virupa (not the same as the mahasiddha who stopped the sun), to whom she anonymously supplied free beer.

When Virupa learned of Sukhasiddhi’s kindness, he summoned her to his forest hermitage. She arrived bearing offerings of beer and pork. Impressed with her great generosity, Virupa immediately bestowed some of his most profound teachings upon this kindly old woman, who was 61 years old at the time. It is said that Sukhasiddhi attained full realisation that very same night, and spontaneously assumed the guise and appearance of a beautiful young girl.

 

5. Naro Kachö Vajra Yogini

Naro Kachö Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

With one face and two hands, and standing on both legs, this form of Vajra Yogini is the most widely recognisable form of the Queen of Tantras. Vajra Yogini in this form is so named because her lineage and practice first arose through a vision beheld by the great Indian Mahasiddha Naropa, thus giving rise to her Sanskrit name ‘Naro Kechari’, meaning “Naropa’s Dakini”.

Naropa was an eminent scholar of Nalanda Monastery who was especially known for being a faultless debater. Appointed as the “northern gatekeeper” of the monastery, it was his role to deal with anyone who entered Nalanda’s northern gates to challenge the monastery to a debate. It was an enormous responsibility for in those days, debates were a highly sophisticated art, and the defeated debater would have to adopt the practices and views of the victor. Such was the trust that Nalanda, a monastery of tens of thousands of highly accomplished scholars, had in Naropa to guard and protect their views.

A sacred tsa tsa of Vajra Yogini in Naro Kacho form.

A sacred tsa tsa of Vajra Yogini in Naro Kachö form.

Nevertheless, Naropa was soon compelled to leave Nalanda in search of Tilopa, a master he had heard of only in name, but whose very name alone filled him with unshakeable faith. Naropa would go on to receive the practice of Vajra Yogini in the form of Vajravarahi from Tilopa, who initiated his student into her sacred mandala after 23 years of purification and practice.

In the first 11 years, Naropa searched the length and breadth of India for his guru Tilopa, undergoing countless hardships, doubts and mental confusion as he chased every whisper of Tilopa’s name. It is commonly believed that during this time, Naropa purified the karma necessary in order for him to meet his guru. His meeting with Tilopa then began 12 years of punishing training, during which Naropa became a leading exemplar in the practice of guru devotion.

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The Pashupatinath Temple complex on the banks of the Bagmati River in Kathmandu, Nepal. Close by are the meditational caves of the legendary mahasiddhas Tilopa and Naropa.

Naropa’s 12 years of training under his guru culminated on the banks of the sacred Bagmati River, at the Pashupatinath Temple. At this holy site, Tilopa initiated his student into the mandala of Vajravarahi (Indra Kachö) by drawing her mandala in the sand. After receiving the initiation, Naropa entered into deep practice and meditation, and gained siddhis (realisations) within six months. His attainments are attributed not just to the initiation he received and the depth of his practice, but to his trust and devotion in his teacher. It was through this guru devotion that Naropa was able to gain Enlightenment within one lifetime.

Through his supreme practice of Vajravarahi, Naropa later gained a vision of Vajra Yogini in her Naro Kachö form, which he later initiated the Nepali Phamthingpa brothers into. They themselves subsequently became attained through the deep practice of this “new” form of Vajra Yogini.

One generation later, the lineage of Naro Kachö Vajra Yogini arrived in Tibet through Sherab Tseg and Mal Lotsawa, entering first into the Sakya pantheon of practices. To this day, Vajra Yogini remains one of the Sakya lineage’s five principal Tantric practices. In the 18th Century, the Naro Kachö practice was introduced into the Gelug tradition. Later, in the 20th Century, it was His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche who recommended Naro Kachö Vajra Yogini as the main meditational deity (yidam) for the majority of practitioners of the Gelugpa tradition.

A painting of Naropa perceiving Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

A painting of Naropa perceiving Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Sacred Vajra Yogini Temple #1: Bidjeswori

The sacred Bidjeswori Temple of Vajra Yogini lies on the west bank of the Bisnumati River in Kathmandu city. Also known by a few other names such as Bijayaswar, Visyasvari or Vidhyeshvari, the temple was built right at the epicentre of a powerful ancient cremation ground that is described in the Vajravarahi Tantras to be populated by vultures in the day and howling jackals at night. In the text, this cremation ground is known as Ramadoli or Karnadip. Hence, it is said that Citipati, the Protectors of the Vajra Yogini Tantras, also known as the Lord and Lady of the Cemetery, reside on this sacred ground.

Bidjeswori Vajra Yogini Temple located in the Kathmandu Valley.

Bidjeswori Vajra Yogini Temple located in the Kathmandu Valley.

At the centre of the temple’s main altar is a statue of the goddess Vidyadhari, the ‘Knowledge Holder’. ‘Bidjeswori’ being the Newari pronunciation of her name. Her sacred body is poised in mid-flight with her right leg bent behind her at the knee and her left leg pulled up high against her breast with her left arm. In this pose, it is easy to see why she is colloquially referred to as Akash Vajra Yogini or ‘Flying Vajra Yogini’.

Her right arm is flung out behind her, holding a curved cemetery knife (drigug) above the sole of her right foot. She cradles a khatvanga in the crook of her arm, resting it on her left shoulder.

The main altar at the Bidjeswori Temple. Left to right: Vajravarahi (Indra Kachö), Vidyadhari Vajra Yogini, and Uddhapada Vajra Yogini (Maitri Kachö). Click on image to enlarge.

To the left of the central image is Vajravarahi (Indra Kachö) in sacred dance, and to the right of the central image is Uddhapada Vajra Yogini (Maitri Kachö), also known as Phamthing (Pharping) Yogini. This form of Vajra Yogini has one foot extended skywards while the other stomps vigorously down upon the worldly god Maha Ishvara, who acts as a cushion for her foot. She holds the same implements as the other forms of Vajra Yogini.

On the right wall of the temple is a statue of Vajra Yogini Naro Khechari, or Naropa’s Dakini, the form of Vajra Yogini that originated from a vision of the Mahasiddha Naropa.

Naropa’s Dakini is enshrined on the right wall of the temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Carved into the ceiling of the temple is the double-tetrahedral mandala of Vajra Yogini, while the courtyard of the temple is filled with stupas of various shapes and sizes. The temple itself is an ancient Newar Buddhist temple and is topped by a traditional Newari pagoda-style roof constructed directly above the shrine. The roof is intricately carved and ornamented as an offering to the Tantric goddesses residing beneath.

The scriptural basis of the four Vajra Yoginis found within this temple can be traced back to the Chakrasamvara Tantra, which is widely practised by the Newaris. The Newar people are a mixture of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan-Burmese ethnicities and they are the original inhabitants of the Kathmandu Valley.

It is said that a separate Tantra concerning these four dakinis was revealed some time ago but this Tantra is highly secret and little is known about it outside the Sambara guthis or ‘Tantric covens’.

 

VIDEO: Tsem Rinpoche at Bidjeswori Vajra Yogini Temple

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

 

About Bidjeswori

Bidjeswori is located in the Swayambhu area of Kathmandu, a short distance away from Swayambhunath Hill and a short taxi ride from Thamel. It is believed to be the site of the ancient charnel ground of Ramadoli (Karnadip). The Hindu devi temple of Sobha Baghwati stands nearby.

Map of the Bidjeswori Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Map of the Bidjeswori Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Sacred Vajra Yogini Temple #2: Pharping

The Vajra Yogini temple at Pharping is known as Pharping Bajra Jogini in Nepali, or Phamthing Dorje Neljorma in Tibetan. It houses a sacred image of Vajra Yogini which has, in the past, manifested the miracle of speaking.

The Phamthingpa Vajra Yogini temple located in Pharping, Nepal.

The Phamthing Vajra Yogini Temple located in Pharping, Nepal.

The main form of Vajra Yogini at the Pharping Temple is known by many names including Uddhapada Vajra Yogini (Maitri Kachö) and Phamthing Yogini; to the Hindus, she is known as Nil Tara. Like most forms of Vajra Yogini, she is red in colour. With her right foot firmly planted upon the worldly deity Maha Ishvara on the ground, the other is raised straight up into the sky, pulled up by her left arm which holds a skullcup to her mouth. A khatvanga staff rests on her left shoulder and in her right hand she holds a curved cemetery knife to her side. Her attendants Baghini and Singhini, the Tiger- and Lion-Headed Yoginis flank her.

This form of Vajra Yogini is known as Phamthing Yogini, named after the Phamthingpa brothers. Click on image to enlarge.

This unique form of Vajra Yogini first appeared in a vision to Vagisvarakirti, the elder of the two Phamthingpa brothers who was a Nepali master and disciple of the famous Mahasiddha Naropa. Hence it is likely that the statue was originally made during the time of Vagisvarakirti himself but was restored at a later date by a subsequent vajracharya (a Vajrayana Buddhist priest from the Newari community of Nepal).

The famous Vagisvarakirti lived in the 11th Century and was renowned as one of the greatest teachers of his day. This great yogin of the Guhyasamaja, Chakrasamvara and Hevajra traditions was the heart disciple of Naropa, who had most likely spent some time in the Kathmandu Valley. Vagisvarakirti studied under Naropa for nine years, receiving the transmissions of the Chakrasamvara and Hevajra Tantras, amongst many other teachings and transmissions. Vagisvarakirti’s brother Dus-‘khorba also studied under Naropa for five years.

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

According to Tibetan sources, the Phamthingpa brothers were attributed to be Indian, perhaps due to their ancestry or from a prolonged stay in India to receive teachings. It may also be that at the time, the Tibetans themselves made no distinction between India and Nepal and thus, they were called the ‘Indian’ Phamthingpas to identify them as foreigners, since Phamthing could also be a Tibetan name.

The explorer and scholar Nicholas Roerich suggests that the elder Phamthingpa was actually known as Vagisvarakirti (Ngagi Wangchuk Drakpa) and that his sacred remains are preserved at Lo-chia-t’un in Gansu, China where he passed away upon his return from a pilgrimage to the Five-Peaked Mountain Paradise of Manjushri (Wu Tai Shan). He writes that the village of Phambi (Pharping) near Kathmandu is where the descendants of the great Phamthingpa currently live.

The Vajra Yogini temple located at Pharping

The Vajra Yogini temple located at Pharping

Aside from the image of Phamthing Yogini in the main chapel, there is another holy statue of Vajra Yogini enshrined in a separate chamber to the side. In terms of iconography, she is exactly the same as the main Vajra Yogini image belonging to Phamthingpa, except that she has a yellow face. It is said that this statue belonged to the travelling Tibetan master Marpa who, while on his travels to India, actually stopped at Pharping to worship Vajra Yogini at this shrine itself.

The Pharping Vajra Yogini Temple is located on the upper level of the building. In the shrine downstairs, a red standing Lokeshvara is in the middle alcove, with Basundara or Yellow Tara on the left, and Buddha Shakyamuni flanked by his two foremost disciples on the right.

According to Chokyi Nyima, the name ‘Pharping’ was derived from Nagaraj Sesa’s epithet Phanathinggu, ‘the Nine Hooded Cobra’. Over time, it has since been corrupted into ‘Phamthing’, which was the name of the village or district in the 18th Century. And so, it was the ‘Indian’ Phamthingpa who was named after his birthplace, the pronunciation of which was presumably further corrupted into ‘Pharping’ over time.

 

VIDEO: Tsem Rinpoche at Pharping Vajra Yogini Temple

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About Pharping

Pharping is about 19 kilometres (about an hour’s drive) south of Kathmandu city. Located on the road to Dakshinkali, it is a major Buddhist pilgrimage destination due to a number of sacred sites. Most people visit Pharping to pay homage to the self-arising Tara image at Drolma Lhakhang (Tara Temple), hike uphill to visit the Guru Rinpoche Cave (Asura Cave temple) where Guru Rinpoche left his handprint in the rocky mountain face, and then continue downhill to visit the Newari-style Vajra Yogini Temple of Pharping.

Those who are unable to walk long distances can hire a car to get dropped off closer to the Vajra Yogini temple. From the drop-off point, the temple is a short walk up a few flights of stairs.

Map of the Pharping Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Map of the Pharping Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Sacred Vajra Yogini Temple #3: Patan

Another sacred Vajra Yogini temple can be found at Patan’s Mahaboudha Temple, which is known in Tibetan as ‘Yerang Sangye Tongku’ or ‘Thousand Buddhas of Patan’. Located in Oku Bahal, the Mahaboudha Temple is an attractive Indian-style stone stupa constructed right in the middle of a courtyard, with the stupa above a shrine to Lord Buddha below. It is a replica of the original stupa that stands at Vajrasana in Bodhgaya, India, the ancient temple constructed at the very spot where Buddha is said to have gained complete Enlightenment.

Patan, the third largest city of Nepal after Kathmandu and Pokhara.

Patan Durbar Square. It is one of three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu Valley, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Abhayaraja of the Sakya caste built the Mahaboudha Temple in 1601, and his contemporary descendants grew in fame as artisans and craftsmen who now live in the Patan area. It is said that the Mahaboudha Temple was built for faithful local devotees who lacked the financial means to travel to India to pay homage to the Buddha. The blessed stone image of Lord Buddha, brought from Vajrasana (The seat of Buddha’s enlightenment-Bodhgaya) itself, resides here in the aspect of Enlightenment.

The original builders of the Mahaboudha Temple probably also constructed the Vajra Yogini Temple located on the first floor directly opposite the Stupa. The main Vajra Yogini image is that of Akash Vajra Yogini, or the ‘Flying Vajra Yogini’.

The Vajra Yogini statue that is being enshrined in the Vajra Yogini temple located in Patan.

The Vajra Yogini statue that is enshrined in the Patan Vajra Yogini Temple. Click on image to enlarge.

The Patan Vajra Yogini Temple is located in the old part of town, not far from Patan Durbar Square. Visitors must walk through a narrow alley in between shops to get to the entrance to the courtyard. The temple is accessible via a steep flight of steps.

 

VIDEO: Tsem Rinpoche at the Patan Vajra Yogini Temple

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About Patan

Patan, also known as Lalitpur, is an ancient city known for its beauty. Located approximately five kilometres south of Kathmandu city on the southern side of the Bagmati River, Patan is the oldest of the three cities in the Kathmandu Valley, the other two being Kathmandu and Bhaktapur. Major sights in Patan include Patan Durbar Square, a stunning collection of temples and palaces and the Golden Temple, a Buddhist monastery which is heavily gilded as its name implies.

Patan is also renowned for being home to a great many craftsmen and artisans, and it is an excellent place to purchase Buddhist and Hindu statues, figurines, paintings and the like.

Map of the Patan Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Map of the Patan Vajra Yogini Temple. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Sacred Vajra Yogini Temple #4: Sankhu

Located at the top of a hill just off the road from Nyanang, the Sankhu Vajra Yogini Temple is actually a temple complex consisting of multiple shrines. The central image worshipped at Sankhu is an ancient and extraordinarily sublime image of the goddess Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara, who is enshrined in the lower temple inside a Newari-style building with a gilded copper roof.

Another Vajra Yogini temple in Sankhu

The Vajra Yogini Temple in Sankhu

The statue, said to be self-arising, is painted red in colour. With one face and four arms, two of her hands hold a skullcup and curved knife at the level of her heart, while the remaining two hold a sword and an utpala lotus on either side of her body. Since the sword is her distinctive implement, she is also popularly known as Khadga Jogini, ‘khadga’ being Nepali for ‘sword’.

The self arising Vajra Yogini of Sankhu, flanked by her attendant yoginis. Click to enlarge.

According to a Tibetan source, a powerful and attained female lama used to live in Sankhu. She is said to have attained Enlightenment by relying on Vajra Yogini and benefited countless beings. After she passed away, many auspicious signs are said to have manifested during her funeral, thus indicating her sublime nature. In the end, her sacred remains were inserted into this statue of Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara.

A larger image of Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara cast in bell metal is enshrined in Sankhu’s main (and larger) upper temple. This statue is the one that lay vajracharya priests take on the annual religious procession (jatra) through the town of Sankhu. In both the upper and lower temples, Baghini and Singhini, the Tiger and Lion-headed Yoginis accompany Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara.

A picture of the Sankhu Vajra Yogini statue that is believed to contain the remains of the great yogini who had become one with Vajra Yogini. Click on image to enlarge.

A picture of Sankhu’s Vajra Yogini statue in the upper temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Next to Sankhu’s self-arising Ugra-tara image, a self-arising stone Swayambhu Stupa is enshrined in another Newari-style chapel. The upper temple at Sankhu also houses the actual loom of the Nepali Princess Bhrkuti. Other notable sights at Sankhu include an ancient solid bronze standing Lokeshvara and a solid bronze standing Buddha.

Due to concerns regarding the structural integrity of the temples after the 2015 Nepal earthquake, many of the statues at Sankhu have been displaced from their original locations and moved to other buildings within the temple complex in order to protect them.

The self arising Swayambu Stupa at Sankhu. Click on image to enlarge.

Both Buddhists and Hindus worship Ugra-tara and have their separate Tantras and sadhanas to propitiate her. Although Ugra-tara’s prevailing reputation is that of an ancient manifestation of Vajra Yogini, to Hindus the goddess is known as Sankhu Narayani, a form of Durga. They acknowledge that Ugra-tara was originally a Buddhist deity but nevertheless, Hindu devotees have incorporated her into the Dasamahavidhya pantheon (the ten aspects of the Mother Goddess’ wisdom) where she is revered as the personification of spiritual hunger.

Like many other temples in Nepal, Sankhu is said to have a connection with Guru Rinpoche. It is said that Guru Rinpoche hid 1000 treasure teachings (termas) throughout Nepal in Sankhu and other monasteries, as well as in the environment itself. These termas were to be discovered at a later time to benefit future practitioners.

A stone image of Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara in one of the meditation caves at Sankhu. Click on image to enlarge.

According to the Newari tradition, the Sankhu Vajra Yogini is said to be the oldest of the four sister yoginis of the Kathmandu Valley, the others being Guhyeshwari, Pharping and Bidjeswori. Therefore, Sankhu is inarguably one of the Valley’s oldest shrines. Having such ancient roots comes with its own set of difficulties, and the origins of Sankhu are somewhat shrouded in mystery although the shrine itself is referred to throughout recorded history.

Sankhu has a 5th Century association with Manadeva, and a 7th Century Amsuvarman inscription that mentions a ‘Gum Vihara’ may be referring to the Gvam Vihara of Bajra Jogini (i.e. Sankhu). In Urgyan Ling-pa’s Padma Kathang, Sankhu is mentioned on three occasions in the history of the 8th Century; later on in the 9th Century, it is said that Sankaracarya, a Hindu, may have visited or even resided at Sankhu.

During the annual Bajrajogini Jatra, the sacred image of Vajra Yogini bedecked in finery is carried in a religious procession to bless everyone in Sankhu town.

During the annual Bajrajogini Jatra, the sacred image of Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara bedecked in finery is carried in a religious procession to bless everyone in Sankhu town. Click on image to enlarge.

Therein lies the mystery of Sankhu’s origins. Vajra Yogini Ugra-tara has sometimes been referred to as a wrathful aspect of Tara and although Tara is originally a Buddhist deity, the Hinayana Buddhists of the time would never have worshipped Tara in her Sankhu form as Ugra-tara. Hence, it seems possible that long before the present temple was built by the Nepali King Prakash Malla in 1655, the site was originally occupied by Hindu priests. It was they who established the Devi (goddess) as the chief image for worship and instituted blood sacrifice to her. The hypothesis that Hindu priests originally occupied the site is further reinforced by the fact a devi pitha is not a likely site for the establishment of a Hinayana vihara (as Sankhu eventually became), and blood sacrifice is never performed for Buddhist yoginis.

Nevertheless, the vihara has long since disappeared and the Sankhu of today is occupied by Buddhist Newar priests who once again attend to the temple. If the name ‘Vajra Yogini’ is Buddhist in origin, and a Buddhist goddess was being worshipped at Sankhu in the 9th Century, author Keith Dowman writes that it is unlikely she was Ugra-tara. He postulates that it is possible she was a different deity, perhaps even Naro Khechari (Naropa’s Dakini) herself.

 

VIDEO: Tsem Rinpoche at the Sankhu Vajra Yogini Temple

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VIDEO: Kathmandu Valley, Nepal: Sankhu Vajra Yogini Temple

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VIDEO: The Vajra Yogini Temple in Sankhu, Kathmandu

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About Sankhu

Sankhu is an ancient Newar town that was once an important stopover on the old trade route between Kathmandu and Lhasa, Tibet. It is located in the northeastern corner of the Kathmandu Valley about 17 kilometres from the capital city of Kathmandu. Unfortunately, earthquakes in 2015 heavily damaged this ancient town and the roads leading there. Fortunately, larger four-wheel-drive cars can still make the journey to Sankhu. At the time of writing, the damaged Vajra Yogini Temple on the northern hillside of the village is being reconstructed but is still open to pilgrims.

Map of the Sankhu Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

Map of the Sankhu Vajra Yogini temple. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Motivation, Prayers and Offerings

While at each of the four sacred sites of Vajra Yogini, you should set a good motivation before engaging in making offerings and prayers there. Setting a good motivation and making a very strong dedication, when combined with the action itself, transforms the energies generated into merit, which is essential for our path towards Enlightenment and ultimate happiness. The immense energies from merit can never be used up; rather, we benefit from them over and over again, and in myriad ways until we achieve our spiritual goals.

 

The Motivation

Since these sacred sites are associated with holy Vajra Yogini, which is a Highest Yoga Tantric practice, our motivation should be geared towards receiving and accomplishing her practice for it is through her practice that we can swiftly achieve Enlightenment.

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As such, His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche recommends to his students to make the following four aspirational prayers, together with the Mahayana motivation of achieving Enlightenment for the benefit of all sentient beings. These are:

  1. To receive the full initiation of glorious Vajra Yogini in this very lifetime from a qualified lama or master, inclusive of the oral transmission and commentary.
  2. To master the 11 yogas and the generation and completion stages of Vajra Yogini practice; and to engage in a long Vajra Yogini retreat during this lifetime.
  3. To ascend to Vajra Yogini’s sacred pure land, Kechara, upon our passing.
  4. To never be separated from Vajra Yogini in this life and all future lives.

 

Prayers

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

Holy sites are excellent places to recite prayers as their benefits are multiplied due to the enlightened energies imbued in the environment by great practitioners and masters who have come before us.

For those who have not yet received initiation, when at these holy sites you can engage in Gaden Lhagyama (Guru Yoga of Lama Tsongkhapa), combined with reciting the mantras of Lama Tsongkhapa, Manjushri, Chenrezig, Vajrapani, Medicine Buddha or Tara. You can also recite your own Guru’s mantra at these sites; it is said that if you are sincere and have tremendous faith, your Guru’s mantra is the most powerful mantra of all.

For those who have received initiation into Vajra Yogini’s Tantric practice, if you have the time, you can engage in your daily sadhana here. Otherwise, you may simply recite her Eight-Line Praise, her holy mantra, and even your Guru’s mantra for the reasons mentioned above.

Before leaving each holy site, recite dedication prayers to dedicate the merits accumulated towards the four aspirations previously mentioned; at the end of your entire trip, seal the merits of your pilgrimage by reciting the King of Prayers, and dedicating it to the great goal of Enlightenment.

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Some of these temples have mani wheels built into the walls. Filled with thousands of mantras and prayers, turning these in a clockwise direction sends the energies of the mantras into the environment, thereby blessing all beings in the area, including yourself and other pilgrims. It is also said that turning these wheels multiplies the effects of our own mantra recitation, and each turn of the wheel is equivalent to reciting the number of mantras that are encased within.

Apart from offering prayers at these sites, visitors and pilgrims can also engage in other merit-generating activities such as prostrations, which help to purify negative karma and lessen the ego; circumambulation, which generates merit and helps us create a stronger connection to the divine through our physical veneration; or even mandala offerings if time, space, and other considerations allow.

 

Offerings

There is a long history of making offerings in the Buddhist tradition. Practices at these four holy Vajra Yogini sites are no different, although they may take on a form more closely related to local Nepali customs, which are steeped in devotional practices. Such offerings include butterlamps, which are offerings of light that can be purchased from the temple’s caretakers who usually prepare them together with their families. Approach the temple’s caretaker and let them know you wish to offer a butterlamp, and they will be more than happy to assist you.

Butter lamps offering

Butterlamp offerings

It is not uncommon for devout pilgrims to offer hundreds, even thousands of butterlamps. The offering of light symbolises the dispelling of ignorance (represented by darkness) and the gaining of true knowledge of existence and enlightened wisdom. Butterlamps are available at temples and shrines all over Nepal, whether Buddhist or Hindu.

Pilgrims will also find that other methods of making offerings are abundant at these temples, including khatas (silk scarves) which symbolically carry our prayers and aspirations to the divine when offered to Vajra Yogini’s sacred images. Flower garlands are frequently available for offering purposes, as are fruits, milk, yoghurt and tea. These are all symbolic of gaining the sustenance we need in our lives.

Khatas

Khatas

Another very significant offering is incense, widely practised throughout all traditions, schools and vehicles of Buddhism. In Nepal, incense offering commonly takes the form of Indian-style incense sticks, or Tibetan-style incense sticks set to light a mound of powdered juniper. The Tibetan style is especially favoured, as the ingredients are specific herbal combinations prescribed in the scriptures. This smoky offering is so popular for its purification qualities that most temples will provide pilgrims with a large incense burner outside their main entrance for this very purpose. Incense offerings inside the inner sanctum are usually left to the temple caretakers to do.

Visitors to the Vajra Yogini shrines will also notice small amounts of money being offered. These are usually symbolically placed near Vajra Yogini as an offering of both our material and spiritual wealth, as well as offering our wishes.

Nepali throwing sindura powder at each other during the Sindoor Jatra (Vermillion powder festival) as part of the celebrations commencing Nepali New Year.

Nepali throw sindhura powder at each other during the Sindoor Jatra (vermillion powder festival) as part of the celebrations commencing Nepali New Year.

Another form of offering that is closely related to the practice of Vajra Yogini is the offering of sindhura (vermillion or powdered cinnabar). It is said that when we gain realisations through the practice of Vajra Yogini, sindhura powder will spontaneously appear on the crown of our heads as an external manifestation of our spiritual accomplishments. This is one of many signs that indicate Vajra Yogini will take us to Kechara Paradise, her pure land, on our passing. Once there, we can focus on our spiritual path even more intensely and attain higher states of being, leading to Enlightenment.

Before leaving each holy site, do not forget to request the temple caretaker for some flowers or dust from Vajra Yogini’s holy body. More often than not, they will be happy to oblige. Store these well in a clean container, as they can be enshrined in our own statues upon our return home.

 

Nepal: An Overview

Nepal, officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a small landlocked central Himalayan country in South Asia. Nepal has always been a popular tourist destination, not only for its incredible natural beauty or as a mecca for adrenaline junkies but also for its deep spirituality expressed in the daily lives of the locals. With a population of around 26.4 million, this Himalayan nation consists of a multiethnic society with Nepali as the official language. The nation’s largest city is its capital Kathmandu, an urban sprawl which is the location of the country’s only international airport, Tribhuvan.

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The name “Nepal” was first used in the ancient texts from the Vedic Age, the era in which the foundation of the Hindu faith was formed. Hinduism is now the predominant religion of the country. Sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE, Prince Siddhartha, the founder of Buddhism was born in southern Nepal in present-day Lumbini. Thus, Buddhism continues to be practised alongside Hinduism as a major spiritual tradition within the country.

A map of Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

A map of Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

Nepal borders with China to the north, India to the south, east, and west while Bangladesh is just 27 kilometres away from Nepal’s southeastern-most tip. In a roughly trapezoidal shape, Nepal is 800 kilometres (497 miles) long and 200 kilometres (124 miles) wide, with a total land area of around 147,181 square kilometres (56,827 square miles).

The country can be divided into three main geographical regions: the Himalayan region, the mid-hill region, and the Terai region. The diverse landscape includes fertile plains, subalpine-forested hills and eight of the world’s tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, the highest peak on Earth (8,848 metres above sea level). It is precisely this environment that has made Nepal a draw for nature lovers and extreme sports enthusiasts.

 

Kathmandu

Kathmandu is the capital of Nepal and the main gateway for foreigners flying into the Himalayan nation. It is a huge city with a population of 1.5 million in the urban area, and three million across the larger Kathmandu Valley, which includes the surrounding towns of Lalitpur, Kirtipur, Madhyapur Thimi, Bhaktapur and other municipalities.

One of the busy streets of Kathmandu

One of the busy streets of Thamel, Kathmandu.

The entire Kathmandu Valley sits at an elevation of approximately 1,400 metres or 4,600 feet above sea level. Traditionally referred to as “Nepal Mandala”, the Valley has been the home of Newar culture, developed by the ancient inhabitants of the Kathmandu Valley for thousands of years. The city also functioned as the old royal capital of the Kingdom of Nepal and thus, scattered throughout the city are many ancient palaces, mansions and gardens of the old Nepali nobility. Today, the city is the seat of the modern Nepali republic that was established in 2008.

Kathmandu has been the epicentre of Nepali art, culture, history and the economy for centuries. Most of its diverse multiethnic population are adherents of the Hindu and Buddhist faiths and so religious and cultural festivities are an important part of life for people living in the Kathmandu Valley.

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Due to the city’s role as an important gateway to the Nepali Himalayas, tourism is a major source of income and livelihood for Kathmandu’s residents. Since a 7.8 magnitude earthquake destroyed historic areas of Kathmandu on 25 April 2015, the capital is still recovering from the ravages of the devastation and tourism is only just starting to improve again. Tourists will face few challenges navigating their stay in Kathmandu – while Nepali is the most widely spoken language, many of the city’s educated residents can understand and converse in English.

 

VIDEO: 10 Things To Do In Kathmandu, Nepal

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Getting There

As a land-locked country, Nepal cannot be reached by sea; the country is only accessible by land and air.

 

By Land

Visitors can travel overland to Nepal from China via the Kodari crossing on the border; or from India, at either the Kakadvitta, Birgunj, Bhairahawa, Nepalgunj or Gaddachowki entry points. A tourist visa can be obtained at any of these border crossings.

Kodari, a border crossing from Nepal into the Tibet .

Kodari, a border crossing from China into Nepal.

 

By Air

Tribhuvan International Airport is located in the country’s capital, Kathmandu. A tourist visa can be obtained upon arrival at the airport (see below for visa requirements). Airlines that fly to Kathmandu include: Silk Air, Qatar Airways, Emirates, Air Asia, Thai Airways, Cathay Dragon, China Southern, Oman Air, Jet Airways, Etihad Airways, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Regent Airways, US-Bangla Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Himalaya Airlines, Nepal Airlines, Malindo Air, and many others.

Airports in Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

Airports in Nepal. Click on image to enlarge.

 

Visas

All visitors travelling to Nepal will need a valid passport and one passport-sized photograph on a light (or white) background for the tourist visa application process. Upon arrival, visitors should fill out the application form before approaching the payment counter to submit the application fee, whereupon the visa (if approved) will be issued at the immigration desk itself.

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Payment for the tourist visa is only accepted in one of the following currencies: US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Euro, Swiss Franc, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar, Japanese Yen, Singapore Dollar or Hong Kong Dollar.

Note: If you enter the country on a 15- or 30-day visa, these can be extended to the 90-day visa at the Department of Immigration in Kathmandu. The cost of this extension will be the difference between the tourist visa you already have and the one you are applying for. The process of extension is simple and can take as little as 15-20 minutes depending on how busy the office is. Tourists can stay for a maximum of 150 days in Nepal during the calendar year (Jan 1 – Dec 31). Below is a table detailing the types of tourist visas available:

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Free Tourist Visas

Free 30-day tourist visas are granted upon arrival to nationals of the following countries: Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Maldives, Pakistan and Bangladesh. These visas can be extended at the Department of Immigration in Kathmandu after payment of the appropriate fee mentioned above.

Chinese nationals are also provided with a free 30-day tourist visa but need to apply at either the Embassy of Nepal in Beijing, the Consulate General of Nepal in Lhasa, the Consulate General of Nepal in Hong Kong or the Honorary Consulate of Nepal in Shanghai to be eligible.

Indian nationals do not require a tourist visa to enter Nepal as long as they have valid identification such as a passport or Electoral Commission Card.

 

Foreign Nationals Not Eligible for Visas on Arrival

Foreign nationals from Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Cameroon, Somalia, Liberia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Palestine or Afghanistan need to obtain Nepal tourist visas from the Nepal Embassies or Diplomatic Missions in their respective countries before travelling to Nepal.

For more information about tourist visas or for enquiries, please contact:

Department of Immigration Nepal
Kalikasthan, Kathmandu
Tel: 00977-1- 4429660 / 4438862 / 4438868/ 4433934
E-mail: mail@nepalimmigration.gov.np, dg@nepalimmigration.gov.np   
Website: www.nepalimmigration.gov.np

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Getting Around Nepal

Due to earthquakes, poor road maintenance, weather conditions and traffic in Kathmandu, getting around can be difficult. While there is public transport available, local buses are usually overcrowded and quite uncomfortable. Tourist buses are available on major routes, and car and motorcycle hire is readily available.

However most tourists find it easier to hire taxis (abundant at major sites in cities), to charter four-wheel drive vehicles, or simply catch a flight to other destinations in Nepal. If staying at a reputable hotel, the concierge staff can arrange transport for you. Although these are usually more expensive than your average taxi, they are a lot more reliable.

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Nepal Travel Tips

  1. Bring a universal power adapter: Electricity sockets in Nepal are compatible with European plugs (three round prongs) and are powered by 220v/50Hz electricity. Bring extra batteries as well as you may experience power outages.
  2. Safety: Nepal is generally considered a safe country to visit. If you want to take extra precautions you can register with your local embassy while in Kathmandu, and make photocopies of all your important documents, such as your passport, flight tickets and travel itinerary. These should be stored in a separate place from the originals.
  3. Weather: It is essential to know what the weather will be like during the time you plan to be in Nepal, as the climate can vary greatly. Winters are very cold while summers can be scorching. Pack extra layers, woolly hats, and scarves for winter; thinner clothing, a hat, sun screen and sun glasses are essential for the summer.
  4. Clothing: Dress modestly, especially when visiting temples. Women should keep most areas covered, including the shoulders, chest and below the knees. Men should wear long trousers, and avoid wearing shorts.
  5. Hygiene: Keep tissue and hand sanitiser with you. Some public toilets, even in restaurants, may not have running water, and some toilets may even require squatting.
  6. Water: Do not drink water directly from the tap. Use bottled water, even for brushing your teeth, and avoid drinks with ice in them, since the water used for the ice may not be filtered. Bottled water can be found in practically every shop in Kathmandu.
  7. Face masks: Nepal’s climate is extremely dry and Kathmandu is extremely dusty, which turns to mud when it rains. Parts of the city are quite polluted as well, so it is a good idea to have face masks on hand. Even many of the locals opt to wear such masks. The atmosphere can irritate the respiratory system and cause symptoms such as runny noses, blocked sinuses, mild headaches, dry lips, and even general exhaustion. It is better to be prepared.
  8. Connectivity: Do not expect great internet service. In 2016, Nepal was ranked the country with the second lowest internet speed in the world, so visitors would do well to lower their expectations in terms of Internet speed and service.
  9. Entrance fees: Be aware that some tourist sites such as temples charge entrance fees for foreigners. Always check with your local tour guide or look out for signs near the entrances.
  10. Shopping: You can haggle for better prices for just about anything from taxi fares to souvenirs. Do make sure to walk around before you buy, as there may be something better just around the corner. Do remain respectful when haggling – the few rupees you save may hold an entirely different (and much greater) value for local shopkeepers.
  11. Environmental friendliness: Many shops in Nepal no longer use plastic bags but provide cloth bags to customers for a small fee. It is best to avoid using plastic bags altogether to ensure Nepal becomes environmentally-friendly.
  12. Tipping: In general, tipping is not necessary as hotels, cafes and restaurants add a service fee, which is usually around 10%. Exceptions are tour guides, porters, etc., and you should aim to offer them 10-15% of their service cost.
  13. Avoid: Avoid bars and clubs. These are tourist traps that scam you into buying alcohol and food at ridiculously inflated prices. Some of these places even have a history of intimidation and violence. Also avoid displaying food around temples. Many temple complexes in Kathmandu are also home to monkeys, who may often snatch food (and other belongings) away from you if you have it out in the open.
  14. Foreign exchange: Be sure to exchange your excess Nepali Rupees before leaving the country. Many currency exchanges do not accept Nepali Rupees outside of Nepal itself.
  15. Etiquette: Do not touch someone’s head or sit showing the soles of your feet to another person as it is considered extremely rude. Pointing with your finger is also considered rude; it is best to point with your chin if needed. Never pass food or give something to another person using your left hand, as it is considered unhygienic.

about_th_960

 

Where to Stay

As the four holy Vajra Yogini temples are in or around Kathmandu, it is recommended to stay within the city limits. Not only will it be easier to arrange transport to these holy sites, but hotels in the city generally have better facilities.

Most tourists prefer to stay in areas popular with the tourist crowd, such as Thamel. Below are three places recommended as a strategic and comfortable base from which visitors can explore the rest of Kathmandu. You may wish to do further research for other accommodation options to meet your needs.

1. Kathmandu Guest House

Address: PO Box 21218, Ward no. 16, Thamel, Kathmandu, Nepal

Phone: (+977-1) 470 0632/470 0800 & +977 9851020484

Website: https://ktmgh.com/kathmandu-guest-house/

Kathmandu Guest House

Kathmandu Guest House

2. Shambaling Boutique Hotel

Address: GPO Box: 3064, Boudha, Kathmandu, Nepal
Phone: (+977-1) 491 6868
Website: http://www.shambaling.com

3. Hyatt Regency Kathmandu


Address: PO Box 9609, Taragaon, Boudha, Kathmandu, Nepal

Phone: (+977-1) 517 1234
Website: https://kathmandu.regency.hyatt.com/

Those on a limited budget will find many backpacker-style accommodation options online, but be sure to choose one that is in an area with a large tourist population for safety reasons. Those who are adventurous can also check out local homestays for a more authentic experience. Many reputable international platforms have expanded their services into Nepal, for example Airbnb (http://www.airbnb.com). Just be sure to check out previous reviews so that you know what to expect.

 

Free Downloads

The texts below were sourced from legitimate book-hosting services offering these texts for free download. They are made available here for purely educational, non-commercial purposes. Some of these texts may require the reader to have the appropriate initiations, transmissions or permissions. Therefore please check with your teacher before reading them.

 

Vajra Yogini and Other Sacred Power Places in Nepal

by Pastor David Lai

Click on image to enlarge. Click here to download book in PDF format.

Click on image to enlarge.

Vajra Yogini and Other Sacred Power Places in Nepal was inspired by His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche when he took 61 people on a whirlwind pilgrimage to Nepal. This book is an account of the amazing spiritual journey with each temple and holy site beautifully captured on camera along with Tsem Rinpoche’s powerful explanations and stories.

The principle pilgrimage sites which the pilgrims were privileged to visit consisted of ancient caves and temples related to the Tantric deity called Vajra Yogini, the Mahasiddha Naropa and his Guru, Tilopa. There are many photographs particularly of the ancient and sacred Vajra Yogini statues that have never been seen in print – in fact, most of these sites are not even mentioned in the usual guidebooks. It is hoped that this book will serve to inspire intrepid spiritual seekers who wish to make their own spiritual journey to discover the ancient world of Vajra Yogini.

Source: https://www.vajrasecrets.com/vajrayogini-and-other-sacred-power-places-in-nepal

Click here to download the PDF version

 

The Life and Teaching of Naropa

Herbert V. Guenther

Click on image to enlarge

In the history of Tibetan Buddhism, the 11th Century Indian mystic Naropa occupies an unusual position, for his life and teachings mark both the end of a long tradition and the beginning of a new and rich era in Buddhist thought. Naropa’s biography, translated by the world-renowned Buddhist scholar Herbert V. Guenther from hitherto unknown sources, describes with great psychological insight the spiritual development of this scholar-saint. It is unique in that it also contains a detailed analysis of his teaching that has been authoritative for the whole of Tantric Buddhism.

This modern translation is accompanied by a commentary that relates Buddhist concepts to Western analytic philosophy, psychiatry, and depth psychology, thereby illuminating the significance of Tantra and Tantrism for our own time. Yet above all, it is the story of an individual whose years of endless toil and perseverance on the Buddhist path will serve as an inspiration to anyone who aspires to spiritual practice.

Source: https://www.amazon.com/Life-Teaching-Naropa-Herbert-Guenther/dp/1570621012

Click here to download the PDF version

 

The Six Yogas of Naropa

By Tsongkhapa (Author), Glenn H. Mullin (Translator)

Click on image to enlarge

Tsongkhapa’s commentary entitled A Book of Three Inspirations: A Treatise on the Stages of Training in the Profound Path of Naro’s Six Dharmas is commonly referred to as The Three Inspirations. Anyone who has read more than a few books on Tibetan Buddhism will have encountered references to the Six Yogas of Naropa, a preeminent yogic technology system.

The six practices — inner heat, illusory body, clear light, consciousness transference, forceful projection, and bardo yoga — gradually came to pervade thousands of monasteries, nunneries, and hermitages throughout Central Asia over the past five and a half centuries.

Source: https://www.amazon.com/Six-Yogas-Naropa-Tsongkhapas-Inspirations/dp/1559392347

Click here to download the PDF version

 

The Practice of the Six Yogas of Naropa

By Glenn H. Mullin

Click on image to enlarge

The Tibetan tradition known as the Six Yogas of Naropa is one of the most popular Tantric systems with all schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Structured and arranged by the 11th Century Indian masters Tilopa and Naropa from various Buddhist Tantric legacies, this system of yogic practice was carried to Tibet by Marpa the Translator a generation later. These six yogas — inner heat, illusory body, clear light, consciousness transference, forceful projection, and bardo yoga — continue to be one of the most important living meditation traditions in the Land of the Snows.

This book on the Six Yogas contains important texts on this esoteric doctrine, including original Indian works by Tilopa and Naropa and writings by great Tibetan lamas. It contains an important practice manual on the Six Yogas as well as other works that discuss the practices, their context, and the historical continuity of this most important tradition.

Source: https://www.amazon.com/Practice-Six-Yogas-Naropa/dp/1559392568

Click here to download the PDF version

 

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19 Responses to Four Sacred Sites of Vajra Yogini in Nepal

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  1. Tsem Rinpoche on Nov 20, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    The Library of Tibetan Works and Archives is in Dharamsala, which is broken into two parts. Upper Dharamsala is where the Dalai Lama’s palace is located with his audience room and main prayer hall. It is also the location of the Dialectics School, Gaden Shartse’s guesthouse, restaurants, tourist hotels and main tourist areas.

    A short ride down takes you to the lower part of Dharamsala where the Tibetan government is located. It is the location of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile, Nechung monastery, the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, the Tibetan arts centre…it’s all in one area. And the reason why it’s split into upper and lower Dharamsala is because the area is mountainous.

    The Library of Tibetan Works and Archives was established by the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government to preserve all the ancient texts – both secular and spiritual – of Tibet and in the process, translate them into various languages like English. This book, Overview of Buddhist Tantra, by Panchen Sonam Drakpa was one of the books translated into English. What’s very interesting is that the book very clearly says that Panchen Sonam Drakpa’s previous life is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, one of the five main disciples of Lama Tsongkhapa. It also says that after that, he was Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen.

    So the book is basically saying that Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, Panchen Sonam Drakpa and Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen – the three Drakpas – are of the same mindstream.

    Now that’s very peculiar because if Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen’s previous life is Panchen Sonam Drakpa, the renowned composer of 45 volumes of Dharma texts, the abbot of three monasteries AND the 15th Gaden Tripa, the holder of Lama Tsongkhapa’s throne…if that’s the case, how can Panchen Sonam Drakpa take rebirth as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen and become an evil spirit and have a negative mind?

    Prior to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, he was Panchen Sonam Drakpa and before that, he was Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, a heart disciple of Lama Tsongkhapa. How can a heart disciple of Lama Tsongkhapa reincarnate as the erudite master Panchen Sonam Drakpa, and then die and reincarnate as Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen…and then Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, due to a bad and negative prayer, become the evil spirit Dorje Shugden? How is that possible? Logically, it’s not.

    What’s incredible is that all of this was printed by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives under the Dalai Lama’s guidance. They contradict themselves because on one hand, the Tibetan leaders say Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit. On the other hand they’re printing a book saying that Panchen Sonam Drakpa, whose later incarnation became Dorje Shugden, is of this illustrious mindstream.

    So how can the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, which is under the auspices of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government, print the translation of a book composed by the previous incarnation of a so-called evil spirit? How can they then say in the book that Panchen Sonam Drakpa’s previous life is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen, and his next life was Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen?

    Prior to the Dorje Shugden ban and controversy, everyone in Tibet knew that Dorje Shugden is Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen, that Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen is Panchen Sonam Drakpa, and that Panchen Sonam Drakpa is Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen. The three Drakpas, they are one mindstream emanating again and again to benefit other beings.

    And as we all know, Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen became Dorje Shugden so it totally doesn’t make sense to call him an evil spirit, then highlight all of his previous lives as erudite masters, and publish all of this information under their own library. So you can see the contradictions. You can read all of this for yourself in Overview of Buddhist Tantra, which was printed by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives.

    —–

    OVERVIEW OF BUDDHIST TANTRA

    GENERAL PRESENTATION OF THE CLASSES OF TANTRA,
    CAPTIVATING THE MINDS OF THE FORTUNATE ONES

    rgyud sde spyi’i rnam par bzhag pa
    skal bzang gi yid ‘phrog ces bya ba bzhugs so

    BY
    PANCHEN SONAM DRAGPA
    (Pan-chen bSod-nams grags-pa, 1478-1554)

    O Choje Sonam Dragpa Pel! (Chos-rje bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal!)
    In the vast expanse of Your bodhi-mind,
    The mind that the Buddhas have lauded for as many as
    one hundred times,
    You have developed “merit” shining like the sun.
    Through Your skill in learning, debate and writing,
    As illuminating as one hundred thousand sun rays,
    You have developed in You a complete knowledge of
    the entire sutras and tantras,
    Resembling a garden of flowers in full bloom.
    The power of Your speech is like the sun;
    The fame of your name has reached the three realms of
    this world.
    O Sonam Dragpa, the teacher of teachers!
    I bow down at your feet.

    In the vast garden of Your great teachings,
    The intelligent young people gather for
    The ‘six ultimates’ and the ‘four modes of transmission,’
    Just as they are attracted to
    The one hundred thousand types of nectar
    Dripping from a flower of one hundred petals.
    May I be able to experience
    The taste of the secret tantra!

    Panchen Choje Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen Chos-rje bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal), the holder of sutra and Vajrayana teachings, was a master whose outstanding learning and spiritual accomplishments are well known by all the learned ones in Tibet. His first incarnation came in the form of one of the five prestigious disciples of Lord Tsongkhapa (Tsong-kha-pa) and became known as Vinaya Holder (Dulzin) Dragpa Gyaltsen (Gragspa rgyal-mtshan). Then came Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal), the author of the present text. The next was Nagri Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen (mNga’-ris sPrul-sku Grags-pa rgyal-mtshan). In this way, a line of his incarnations, each with the Dragpa (gragspa) surname, followed successively.

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) was born in the 14th century in Tsetang (rTsed-thang) in the Lhoka (Lho-kha) region of Central Tibet. He entered the great seat of learning, Sera Thekchenling (Se-ra theg-chen-gling) monastic university, where he became the personal disciple of spiritual master Donyo Dangden (Dhon-yod dang-ldan) and His Holiness the Second Dalai Lama Gedun Gyatso (dGe-‘dun rgya-mtsho). Under them, he studied the entire teachings of sutra, tantra and their commentaries, and became known for his outstanding learning. He also received from them the empowerments, reading transmissions, guides and instructions of the entire body of spiritual training. On becoming the fully blessed one, the Dalai Lama appointed him the abbot of the Loseling (Blo-gsalgling) college, one of the four colleges of Drepung (‘Bras-dpung)- the most prestigious monastic university in Tibet before 1959, with over 10,000 monks on its register. He continued to be the abbot of this college for the next six years; and after him the tenure for each of his successors in this position was fixed for a period of six years, a rule that is followed even today.

    He was then appointed the head of the Gelugpa (dGe-lugs-pa) order, the throne holder of Gaden (dGa’-ldan), thus becoming the 15th regent of Lord Tsongkhapa (Tsong-khapa), the second Buddha. In his eulogy to him, Khedrub Gelek Pelsang (mKhas-grub dGe-legs dpal- bzang) says:

    O Lama, the second successor of the Unsubduable One,
    The regent of the Lord of Dharma,
    You are the one who made the virtuous qualities thrive;
    You are the one who ascended to the golden throne uplifted
    by the fearless lions.
    May Your success thrive forever!

    He continued to be the throne holder for the next seven years, during which time he promoted the spread of Lord Tsongkhapa’s (Tsong-kha-pa) precious teachings, the Gelug (dGe-lugs) tradition, across the land in all directions. He also paid special attention to the practice of monastic rules and the learning and meditation of Buddhism in the monasteries such as Sera (Se-ra), Drepung (‘Bras-spungs), Kyomolung (sKyo-mo-lung), Phagmo Chode (Phag-mo chos-sde), Nyeding (Nye-sdings), Ödna (’Od-sna) and Chöde Rinchen (Chos-sde rin-chen) etc. and improved them to a great extent. He taught the Third Dalai Lama Sonam Gyatso (bSod-nams rGya-mtsho) as the latter’s spiritual master. It was from him that the Dalai Lama received the name Sonam (bSod-nams).

    His contributions in the literary field are enormous; and, indeed, they are the most valuable of all his contributions. Tsongkhapa (Tsong-kha-pa) has rightly said:

    Of all one’s deeds,
    The ‘deeds of speech’ are the most valuable.

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) was a person with an extraordinary talent for teaching, debate and writing. In his colophon to Bu mey chi don zab don sel wey dron mey (dBu ma’i spyi don zab don gsal ba’i sgron me), he wrote:

    In the field of teaching, I am [next to none!] Knowing that
    I would outdo them in this field, Arya Asanga and his
    brother transmigrated into another realm.

    In the field of debate, I am [next to none!] Knowing that
    I would find out the areas they had contradicted and
    that I would examine them and put forth my arguments,
    the logician Dignaga (Digh-naga) and Dharmakirti tactfully
    bypassed me.

    In the field of writing, I am [next to none!] [In my eyes,]
    Arya-sura was just good at spreading the works, which
    are like ‘disputes~ between an insect and a field.’

    I am the learned man. Peerless in the field of teaching,
    debate and writing!

    For some this passage might sound utterly nonsensical, but the most learned master of our age, the talented teacher, logician and writer, the late tutor to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Yongdzin Trijang Dorjechang (Yongs-‘dzin Khri-byang rDorje-‘Chang), said: “Now, some people of our time, who consider themselves learned scholars, think that this is utter nonsense; but they are wrong.”

    Panchen Sonam Dragpa Pel (Panchen bSod-nams grags-pa-dpal) wrote over 45 volumes of books dealing with many different subjects, such as the commentaries on the sutras and tantras, the saddhana manuals of the tutelary deities, history, religious history and so forth. Among these, one that is very important for all who wish to learn and meditate on the path-of the practical aspect of Buddhism in general and that of Vajrayana in particular is the Leg shey gyu de chi nam par shagpa kelsang gi yi trod (Legs bshad rgyud sde spyi’i rnam par bzhag pa skal bzang gi yid ‘phrod). In this book, he has explained precisely how the four tantras differ from one another. He has also fully described the stages of the two spontaneous path practices of the Vajrayana tradition, dealing with the ‘six ultimates’ and the ‘four modes of transmission’, thus interpreting without mistake the intention of Adhi-Buddha Vajradhara.

    May the reprint of this text, which the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives is publishing herewith, bring peace and happiness in this world!

    Professor Nawang Jinpa
    St Joseph’s College
    Darjeeling
    January 24 1996

    PSD1

    PSD2

    PSD3

    PSD4

    PSD5

  2. Pastor Niral Patel on Oct 28, 2018 at 1:08 am

    A sacred image of the rare form of Vajrayogini known as Ucheyma, the Buddha that shows us the path to eradicate the ego. For this and many other high-resolution images of the enlightened beings to download for free visit: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    digitalucheyma-s

  3. Valentina Suhendra on Oct 26, 2018 at 11:05 am

    Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini) (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): H.H. the 7th Panchen Lama, Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini), Vajra Varnani (green assistant), Vajra Vairocani (yellow assistant), Dorje Shugden and Citipati.

    The central deity is known as Chinnamasta or Dorje Neljorma Ucheyma. Both Chinnamasta (Sanskrit) and Ucheyma (Tibetan) literally mean, ‘She Whose Head is Severed’. The meaning behind her form is to show practitioners that they need to completely remove the grasping and self-identification with the “I” or the ego. Generally, the identity of the self is strongly associated with our face more than any other part of our body. We usually recognise a person when we look at a person’s face. Hence, our self-identification or ego is strongly associated with our face. To show us that this self-identification needs to be overcome on the spiritual path to enlightenment, Vajrayogini uses her ritual chopper to decapitate herself. This is symbolic of her practice eradicating the ego.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini, as she is also known, removes all afflictive mental constructs by removing the root cause – the identification of the self, the ego. We are either attached to or averse to people and circumstances because we have an ego to please, gratify and protect. But in the grander scheme of things, this self-identification with the ‘I’ is illusory and does not really exist. Therefore, Vajrayogini reveals this ultimate truth through the dramatic decapitation of her head and at the same time is still able to live and function. She is able to live due to her direct perception of emptiness and egolessness.

    Contrary to what some people might think, the eradication of the self does not destroy individualism, our personality or make us into a mindless person. In fact, the eradication of the ego makes us become a vibrant and compassionate person, someone that has greater awareness of the suffering of others. In other words, we become much warmer, kinder, forgiving, tolerant, conscientious, generous, contemplative and we are become a joy to be with. The cutting of the ego or the ‘I’ brings us towards awakening our true self, the Buddha nature within.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini has two dakini attendants. From the trunk of her neck, there are three severed blood vessels spurting three jets of blood that flow into the mouths of her own decapitated head that she carries in her left hand and into the mouths of her two attendants. Tsem Rinpoche explained that the three jets of blood represent that her practice purifies the three psychic poisons of ignorance, hatred and desire. In turn, this leads to the attainment of the three bodies of a Buddha – the emanation body, the enjoyment body and the truth body. In other words, the severance of the ego via her tantric path leads to the purification of all delusions and ultimately, the attainment of Buddhahood itself.

    The 7th Panchen Lama, Palden Tenpai Nyima is featured floating above because of his compilation of sadhanas from the ancient Sadhanamala texts. This includes a particular sadhana or collection of prayers, visualisation and mantra focused on Ucheyma. Incidentally, Dorje Shugden in many of his previous lives was a lineage master of the Vajrayogini tantras as well. These previous lives include the likes of the Mahasiddha Naropa and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso. The Lord and Lady of the Charnel Ground, known as Citipati, are one of the main protectors of the Vajrayogini Tantra.

    Last of all, the ascetic meditator engaging in his devotional practices towards Ucheyma in the cemetery represents the ideal environment for tantric practice because such environments invoke deep renunciation towards worldly affairs and attachments. All Buddhist traditions advocate meditating on the bones of the deceased because it reminds us of our mortality and hence, we develop revulsion towards the transient nature of worldly or ordinary existence.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  4. Joy on Oct 26, 2018 at 12:20 am

    Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini) (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): Maitri Kacho (Flying Vajrayogini), Maitri Kacho (One-Leg Up Vajrayogini), Naro Kacho, Sukhasiddhi, Ucheyma (Severed Headed Vajrayogini), Vajra Varnani (green assistant), Vajra Vairocani (yellow assistant), Citipati, Vajravarahi and Dorje Shugden.

    The central deity is known as Severed Headed Vajrayogini, Chinnamasta or Dorje Neljorma Ucheyma. Both Chinnamasta (Sanskrit) and Ucheyma (Tibetan) literally mean, ‘She Whose Head is Severed’. The meaning behind her form is to show practitioners that they need to completely remove the grasping and self-identification with the “I” or the ego. Generally, the identity of the self is strongly associated with our face more than any other part of our body. We usually recognise a person when we look at a person’s face. Hence, our self-identification or ego is strongly associated with our face. To show us that this self-identification needs to be overcome on the spiritual path to enlightenment, Vajrayogini uses her ritual chopper to decapitate herself. This is symbolic of her practice eradicating the ego.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini removes all afflictive mental constructs by removing the root cause – the identification of the self, the ego. We are either attached to or averse to people and circumstances because we have an ego to please, gratify and protect. But in the grander scheme of things, this self-identification with the ‘I’ is illusory and does not really exist. Therefore, Vajrayogini reveals this ultimate truth through the dramatic decapitation of her head and at the same time is still able to live and function. She is able to live due to her direct perception of emptiness and egolessness.

    Contrary to what some people might think, the eradication of the self does not destroy individualism, our personality or make us into a mindless person. In fact, the eradication of the ego makes us become a vibrant and compassionate person, someone that has greater awareness of the suffering of others. In other words, we become much warmer, kinder, forgiving, tolerant, conscientious, generous, contemplative and we are become a joy to be with. The cutting of the ego or the ‘I’ brings us towards awakening our true self, the Buddha nature within.

    The Severed Headed Vajrayogini has two dakini attendants. From the trunk of her neck, there are three severed blood vessels spurting three jets of blood that flow into the mouths of her own decapitated head that she carries in her left hand and into the mouths of her two attendants. Tsem Rinpoche explained that the three jets of blood represent that her practice purifies the three psychic poisons of ignorance, hatred and desire. In turn, this leads to the attainment of the three bodies of a Buddha – the emanation body, the enjoyment body and the truth body. In other words, the severance of the ego via her tantric path leads to the purification of all delusions and ultimately, the attainment of Buddhahood itself.

    Severed Headed Vajrayogini is surrounded by some of her other forms, including Naro Kacho, two forms of Maitri Kacho, Sukhasiddhi and Vajravarahi. These forms of Vajrayogini are more commonly practised compared to Severed Headed Vajrayogini and are prevalent in most Tibetan Buddhist lineages. Though they may look different, all forms are indivisible from her true nature and all her practices can lead practitioners to enlightenment. Naro Kacho arose from a vision beheld by the Mahasiddha Naropa, Maitri Kacho from a vision beheld by Maitripa, and Indra Kacho from a vision beheld by Indrabodhi. The Lord and Lady of the Charnel Ground, known as Citipati, are one of the main protectors of the Vajrayogini Tantra.

    Last of all, Dorje Shugden is a protector with special affinity with Vajrayogini practitioners because he arose from an incarnation lineage that includes Naropa and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso who practised and proliferated her Tantra.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  5. Pastor Adeline on Oct 26, 2018 at 12:02 am

    Vajrayogini (Main figure)

    (Top to bottom): Naropa, Vajradharma, Hero Vajradharma, Naro Kacho, Maitri Kacho (Flying Vajrayogini), Dorje Shugden and Vajravarahi.

    Vajrayogini is a female tantric Buddha and she has many forms that are derived from various lineages. She mainly embodies the fully enlightened female (shakti) aspect of a Buddha. She belongs to the Mother Tantra classification, which refers to her practice concentrating on the wisdom aspect of the path to Buddhahood. She is also the principal dakini, the compassionate female guides and nurturers of tantric meditation who lead practitioners to enlightenment. In the thangka, the main figure in the middle is Naro Kechari as she arose from the pure vision of the Mahasiddha Naropa.

    In Anuttara (Highest) Yoga Tantra, principal dakinis normally appear in union with a male consort and this can be seen in the cases of deities such as Guhyasamaja, Hevajra, and Kalachakra. In the case of Vajrayogini, she is the principal female Buddha of the Chakrasamvara Tantra and therefore, she is normally in union with Heruka Chakrasamvara. Furthermore, Vajrayogini is also considered a Vajradakini, who are yidams or meditational deities in their own right. Their practices have evolved from the main practices of their consorts, simplifying the otherwise complicated original practice by reducing it to a single-deity meditation without sacrificing the main benefits and features of the original. Hence, Vajradakini practices such as Vajrayogini and Nairatmya are derived from the original Chakrasamvara Tantra and Hevajra Tantra respectively.

    In essence, Vajrayogini is known as “Sarvabuddha-dakini” or the Dakini Who is the Essence of all Buddhas. Her mantra is known as the King of All Mantras as it has the most powerful ability to bless us with spiritual attainments even without any visualisation or meditation. There are 11 Yogas in the generation stage of her practice and a few which have the power of transforming ordinary actions like sleeping, waking and ordinary daily tasks into a collection of merits. Ultimately, her Tantra offers salvation for ordinary practitioners at death with her special promise of guiding practitioners towards Kechara, or the Paradise of the Dakinis, in which we can continue deep practices to become a Buddha without fear, obstacles and interruptions.

    Within Vajrayogini practice, soliciting the blessings of the lama and the lineage master are of paramount importance in order for our practice to bear results. Hence, the lama is visualised as the red Vajradharma with arms crossed at the heart, holding the vajra and bell. The lineage masters are visualised as Hero Vajradharma, holding a damaru and skullcup while cradling a khatvanga. Aside from the main Naro Kechari form, Vajrayogini also appears in the form of Maitri Kechari, who is known as Flying Vajrayogini, and arose from the vision of Maitripa. Another common form is known as Indra Kechari, or Vajravarahi, who arose from the vision of Indrabodhi.

    Last of all, Dorje Shugden is a Dharma protector with a special affinity with Vajrayogini practitioners. This is because he himself arose from an incarnation lineage that includes the likes of Naropa, the progenitor of Naro Kechari practice, and Tsarchen Losel Gyatso who had practised and proliferated her Tantra and is listed as one the lineage masters invoked upon every day by Vajrayogini practitioners.

    More free downloads: https://bit.ly/2oxb4qU

    Read more about Vajrayogini: https://bit.ly/2iVLCuG

  6. Pastor Shin Tan on Oct 4, 2018 at 3:33 pm

    Original illustration and text posted by Eric D Hatchell as a reply to H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche’s facebook post on Vajrayogini here: http://bit.ly/VYogini0001

    The Dākiṇī with the Essence of all Buddhas, Vajrayoginī

    Her practice includes methods to end the otherwise repetitive states of Bardo and rebirth, by transforming the process into a journey, which may lead to full enlightenment. In preparation for which, Vajrayoginī further offers the omnipresent ability to reconstruct the nature of the most, mundane everyday experiences, such that they may reveal higher destinations, via the spiritual paths she may choose to reveal. [1] Vajrayoginī being defined as, “The Dākiṇī who is the Essence of all Buddhas”, [2] is amplified by scholar Miranda Shaw when she implied that this deity is no less than, the supreme nature of the very Tantric pantheon. No male Buddha, including her divine consort, Heruka-Cakrasaṃvara, further advances her in metaphysical implications. [3]

    Vajrayoginī’s sādhanā originates from India circa 10/12th C, [4] when summoned as Heruka-Cakrasaṃvara’s Yab-Yum consort [5], with later forms including Vajrayoginī as “Solitary Hero”, she may be visualized with the deep red complexion of a 16-year-old female, whose stance is nude amidst a blazing fire of pristine awareness and most exalted wisdom. Her head is adorned with a crown of five skulls and upon her forehead, the third eye of wisdom is set vertically (represented here by an auspicious jewel). She drapes a necklace of fifty dried human skulls and is depicted with her traditional vajra-handled knife in her right hand; with a blood filled kapala in her left, she drinks with upturned head while looking above, toward the pure realm of Khechara. This seemingly gruesome gesture is actually symbolic of her clear light in great joy, known as “mahasukha” (the great bliss), [6] [7] thus the blood she drinks may be offered to us all as if a fine wine.

    Resting on the left shoulder is a Katvanga staff as she stands tall with her two feet, trampling the bodies of red Kalaratri and black Bhairava (with heads bending backward), representing the embodiment of illusion and ego-awareness. The composition, all of which rests above a sun disc and multicolored lotus pedestal, she is rendered here after a thankga of Naropa Tradition (passed down from a special teaching of the Indian Mahasiddha Naropa). Vajrayoginī herself may be classified as the personification of “Wisdom” or “Mother” and her practice originates with the Chakrasamvara Cycle of Tantras, which is one of the five principal tantric practices of the Sakya School, although found in one form or another, she is included in all schools of Tibetan Buddhism. [8]

    Vajrayoginī also appears in versions from the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, with one popular system having the practitioner visualize themselves as Vajrayoginī, as such, their guru taking the form of Milarepa. [9] Thus depicted above the central deity here we see Milarepa on our right, with his great Guru Marpa left (whose guru was Naropa himself, and other great Indian masters). [10]

    Vajrayoginī is a simplified, single most form of the female Buddha, who is otherwise a collection of alternate forms. From her sādhanās she is visualized in English terms as “Vajra Sow”, “Wrathful Lady”, “Fierce Black One”, and other such similar manifestations of female energy found in numerous iconographic renderings and traditions. Each feature of Vajrayoginī’s visualization conveys important spiritual concept. For example, her three eyes indicate her ability to see all (past, present and future); her red-colored body symbolizes the blazing of her ”inner fire”, and the curved knife she wields, demonstrates the power to sever the delusions and obstacles of her followers and of all living beings. [11]

    —–

    Wordmarque Design and Photography

    —–

    References:

    [1] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996, p.xii.

    [2] “The Berzin Archives.” Bonding Practices for Mother Tantra. Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.berzinarchives.com/…/bonding_prac_mother_tantra_….

    [3] Shaw, Miranda Eberle. Buddhist Goddesses of India. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006, p. 8.

    [4] English, Elizabeth. Vajrayoginī: Her Visualizations, Rituals & Forms: A Study of the Cult of Vajrayoginī in India. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2002.

    [5] “Vajrasattva (Buddhist Deity) – White (with Consort).” Vajrasattva (Buddhist Deity). Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.himalayanart.org/items/77598.

    [6] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996 p. 123-127.

    [7] Glenn H. Mullin

    [8] “Item: Vajrayogini (Buddhist Deity) – (Naropa Tradition).” Vajrayogini (Buddhist Deity). Accessed February 18, 2016. http://www.himalayanart.org/items/290.

    [9] English, Elizabeth. Vajrayoginī: Her Visualizations, Rituals & Forms: A Study of the Cult of Vajrayoginī in India. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2002, p. xxiii.

    [10] Drinking the Mountain Stream: Songs of Tibet’s Beloved Saint, Milarepa … by Mi-la-ras-pa, Rinpoche Lama Kunga, Brian Cutillo, p.305.

    [11] Gyatso, Kelsang. Guide to Dakini Land: The Highest Yoga Tantra Practice of Buddha Vajrayogini. London: Tharpa, 1996, p.123-127.

    VY

  7. Chris on Aug 24, 2018 at 10:18 am

    Thank you, Rinpoche for sharing this blog post. It is very informative and whoever that wishes to go for pilgrimage in Nepal will be greatly benefited from this article. I still remember due to Rinpoche’s kindness. I am able to visit all of the above holy sites to pay homage to Vajrayogini. it was a magical and spiritual journey.

    Out of all of the 4 temples, I feel most connected to Bijesvari and Sankhu Vajrayogini the most. It was just magical to be able to visit both temples. Vajrayogini very long and deep connection with Nepal and her practice is very prevalent. Many signs and miracles surrounded deep Vajrayogini practitioners and it shows how powerful her practice is. It is very important for us to make a connection with her now and pray to receive her practice in the future.

    Rinpoche is exceptionally passionate in Buddha Vajrayogini and keep urging us to make a connection with this female Buddha in Kechara. We have Vajrayogini’s stupa here on our land to bless everyone and everything on the land. Even the name of the place is called Kechara which is Vajrayogini’s pure land. So whoever that came across Kechara or anything that is associated with us, a seed of Vajrayogini will be planted into their mindstream and one day it will germinate and bring him/her to Vajrayogini.

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  8. Beatrix Ooi on Aug 23, 2018 at 10:53 am

    For more free high resolution images of Vajrayogini, visit: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/downloads/buddha-images.html?nggpage=9

    Vajrayogini

    Vajrayogini

    Vajrayogini

  9. Tsem Rinpoche on Jul 29, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    This eldery & innocent monk in India was brutally attacked, find out why. Shockinghttps://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=163953

    2018-07-29_10-31-56

  10. Pastor Adeline on Jul 28, 2018 at 2:32 am

    Nice short video of a new LED signage reminding us of who we can go to for blessings in case of need: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBwrkaKUoH0

  11. Pastor Adeline Woon on Jul 27, 2018 at 6:25 am

    This is my beautiful Bodhgaya Vajra Yogini on my personal altar. May you be blessed by her always. Read about her here https://bit.ly/2AfEK4Q

    Tsem Rinpoche

  12. Joy Kam on Jul 26, 2018 at 2:12 am

    Listening to the chanting of sacred words, melodies, mantras, sutras and prayers has a very powerful healing effect on our outer and inner environments. It clears the chakras, spiritual toxins, the paths where our ‘chi’ travels within our bodies for health as well as for clearing the mind. It is soothing and relaxing but at the same time invigorates us with positive energy. The sacred sounds invite positive beings to inhabit our environment, expels negative beings and brings the sound of growth to the land, animals, water and plants. Sacred chants bless all living beings on our land as well as inanimate objects. Do download and play while in traffic to relax, when you are about to sleep, during meditation, during stress or just anytime. Great to play for animals and children. Share with friends the blessing of a full Dorje Shugden puja performed at Kechara Forest Retreat by our puja department for the benefit of others. Tsem Rinpoche

    Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbzgskLKxT8&t=5821s

  13. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 25, 2018 at 2:29 am

    The current form of Naro Kacho Vajra Yogini appeared to the Indian Mahasiddha Naropa after he meditated intensely on her practice inside a cave. He beheld her glorious form in a vision. This unique form became known as Naropa’s Vajra Yogini or Naro Kacho, as it had never existed before. Later, in Tibet, His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche also had visions of Vajra Yogini. His vision differed slightly from the vision of her that Naropa beheld. In the original Naro Kacho form, Vajra Yogini looks towards her pure land named Kechara. However in Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche’s vision, she looked straight at him, symbolic of the deity empowering him to bestow her practice to many people in order to benefit them. The practice of Vajra Yogini belongs to the Highest Yoga Tantra classification that leads to tremendous inner transformation and can even grant enlightenment within just one lifetime.

    PabongkaRinpocheVY

  14. yin ping on Jul 23, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Buddhists are encouraged to make pilgrimage to the 4 holy places, the Buddha’s birth place, place where the Buddha enlightenment, place where Buddha gave his first teachings, and lastly place where Buddha passed away. Visiting any holy places indeed connects us with the blessed energies where the holy beings existed, practiced tirelessly and selflessly for the sake of sentient beings. This creates a strong Dharma imprints and it opens up good karma and merits for a better living and also very beneficial for our spiritual path. We are creating the cause to attain the same virtuous quality of a enlightened beings.

  15. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 22, 2018 at 11:03 pm

    Video of Tsem Rinpoche’s shrine taken July 16, 2018. Very beautiful, well done and meticulous.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPAfpMoN2bA

  16. Pastor Shin Tan on Jul 21, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Video of Tsem Rinpoche’s shrine taken July 16, 2018.
    Very beautiful, well done and meticulous.

    https://video.tsemtulku.com/chat-videos/chat-1531752637.mp4


  17. Samfoonheei on Jul 18, 2018 at 2:33 pm

    A wonderful details write-up for anyone who is planning a pilgrimage or visiting there. Its will makes the trip such easier. A very profound teachings and explanations of the four Sacred sites of Vajra Yogini in Nepal. Beautiful pictures of 4 important sites of Vajra Yogini which I am fortunate to have a look at. I have not been to Kathmandu before but would love to visit if I have the opportunity. In fact getting excited after reading this article and watching those videos. Learning some new knowledge of what to do after visiting each site and at the end of trip and making the four aspirational prayers as recommended.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

  18. Anne Ong on Jul 16, 2018 at 9:21 pm

    Love the wonderful write up and explaination of sacred Lady Vajrayogini iconography and benefits of her practice. I find all forms of Lady Vajrayogni very interesting and captivating.
    Am considering taking up her preliminary practice in the near future if i have the merits to do so. Thank you very much Rinpoche and Pastor David for this blessed and interesting article on four sacred sites of vajrayogini in nepal 🙏👍😘🌈🌻

  19. Jacinta Goh on Jul 15, 2018 at 8:45 pm

    Dear Rinpoche and Pastor David,

    I’ve just downloaded the teachings (both audio and PDF) above in my external hard disk, together with The Promise e-book https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/tsem-rinpoches-inspiring-biography-now-in-ebook-format.html , and few other teachings here https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/free-downloads-texts. I always run out of the phone data due to my addiction towards listening to the teachings. I can spend hours listening to it and that’s crazy! I’ve heard the teachings above before and there was once Victor uploaded Pastor David’s teachings in FB about Vajrayogini also.

    I like it the most when Rinpoche explained the correct postures or ornaments for different lineages of Vajrayogini. Although at this moment I may not have the fortune to visit there, but there’s hope right? May I remember this when I visit KFR Vajrayogini’s stupa:

    1.To receive the full initiation of glorious Vajra Yogini in this very lifetime from a qualified lama or master, inclusive of the oral transmission and commentary.
    2.To master the 11 yogas and the generation and completion stages of Vajra Yogini practice; and to engage in a long Vajra Yogini retreat during this lifetime.
    3.To ascend to Vajra Yogini’s sacred pure land, Kechara, upon our passing.
    4.To never be separated from Vajra Yogini in this life and all future lives.

    Thanks for the teachings above, as it did help me when I was in KFR. I love circumambulating the VY Stupa especially early in the morning when there wasn’t anyone there. The guards must be thinking that I was crazy to do my rounds and sitting there for nothing… hehehe. Sometimes if I have more time, I’ll recite the King of Prayers too.

    Thanks for the awesome blogpost on Lady Vajrayogini, where her practice can confer enlightenment in this very lifetime.

    Thank you.
    P/s: Those who are residing in KFR now should be grateful for this opportunity!

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Noticeboard

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  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Dec 15. 2018 10:29 AM
    The mystery of Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov, a mummy whose body defies time has amazed the world. Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov was a Buryat Buddhist lama of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. According to his last will and testament he requested to be buried as he was at the time of his death, sitting in lotus posture Only that he asked to be exhumed after 30 years Later. His body was exhumed and examined by Buddhist monks, discovered surprisingly that there is no signs of decay of his body after so many years. Interesting read.
    Thank you Rinpoche this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/hambo-lama-itygelovs-body-after-75-years
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Dec 15. 2018 10:28 AM
    Stupas were built in ancient times serving as tombs for important figures, but has since been renewed by the Buddha to represent the heart of Enlightenment. Since then , many Dorje Shugden stupas have built in every Buddhist country in the world and by Buddhists of all traditions especially inTibet . Every corner over Tibet many Dorje Shugden stupas have been erected then. This is a sign that the magnificent Protector and its practice is spreading far and wide.
    Due to the power of its blessings to practitioners, stupas are often a pilgrimage destination for Buddhists and many will circumambulate the stupa as it is a very meritorious. One such place is the famous Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal and our very own Kechara Forest Retreat at Bentong ,Pahang Malaysia.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/why-construct-a-dorje-shugden-stupa
  • Sofi
    Saturday, Dec 15. 2018 04:39 AM
    Videos Redressing the Misinformation About Dorje Shugden and the Tibetan Situation

    Please do watch these enlightening videos that serves to clarify the truth about the Tibetan situation. You owe it to yourself to understand the disinformation that the Tibetan Leaders are dispensing to their people to divert attention away from their failures. Very disgraceful!

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/videos-redressing-the-misinformation-about-dorje-shugden-and-the-tibetan-situation.html
  • Sofi
    Saturday, Dec 15. 2018 04:35 AM
    Dr. Ambedkar: Supreme Champion of Human Rights

    Dr. Ambedkar is a hero and icon for the Dalits of India who were once called ‘Untouchables.’ He fought to eradicate the discrimination and inequality that he knew all too well because he, too, was an Untouchable by birth. He was a leader of the Dalits and the Law Minister of the Government of India from 1947 to 1951.

    Mahatma Gandhi’s fight for freedom involved uniting India to rise against an external enemy – the colonial British regime that ravaged the country – but Dr. Ambedkar’s struggle was a far more challenging one as he was fighting against his own people. He was fighting the oppression and inequality that has been deeply entrenched for thousands of years as part of his society’s religious and cultural dogma.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/inspiration-worthy-words/dr-ambedkar-supreme-champion-of-human-rights.html
  • Sofi
    Saturday, Dec 15. 2018 04:33 AM
    Huge outdoor Tsongkapa!

    Both Buddha Shakyamuni and Guru Rinpoche prophesied Tsongkhapa’s birth and attainments. At the time of Buddha Shakyamuni, a young boy who was a previous incarnation of Tsongkhapa presented a crystal rosary to Buddha and received a conch shell in return. Buddha prophesied Manjushri would be born as a boy in Tibet, would found Ganden monastery, and would present a crown to my statue. Buddha gave the boy the future name Sumati-kirti (Blo-bzang grags-pa, Lozang-dragpa). Guru Rinpoche also prophesied a monk named Lozang-dragpa would be born near China, would be regarded as an emanation of a great bodhisattva, and would make a Buddha-statue into a Sambhogakaya representation.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/tsongkhapa/huge-outdoor-tsongkapa.html
  • Yee Yin
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 09:23 PM
    Wow, this young boy could paint like an experienced painter with a style that is so unique. He is very talented since young. But where does the talent come from? How come some people have a special talent since birth but some do not? For Buddhists, we believe that the talent is actually the imprint from the previous life. It is something that the person has done so much in their previous life that when they take rebirth in another body, they still have the tendency to do the same thing if the condition is right.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/kid-painter-is-mini-monet.html
    [no sender]
  • Tsem Rinpoche
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 07:31 PM
    This special post “Kyabje Zong Rinpoche’s Advice on Dorje Shugden’s Practice” contains His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche’s actual speech and the accompanying English translation on the benefits of Dorje Shugden’s practice and lineage. Fantastic! We all know Kyabje Zong Rinpoche is the same nature as Heruka-Chakrasamvara. To hear his voice is a tremendous blessing as he was an erudite Pandit, master artist, supreme debater, historian, Mahasiddha and highly attained yogi. He was also extremely kind, loving, caring and he dedicated his whole life to teaching the Dharma to thousands. He was a beautiful human being. He was also my spiritual father and root guru.

    I came across his beautiful speech on the World Peace Protector Dorje Shugden and I have blogged his holy speech so that many around the world can listen to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche explain the benefits of this supreme protector. There can be no doubts after this.

    Who dare say that Kyabje Zong Rinpoche was wrong, errant, without knowledge or evil? No one can say this as it is untrue. So far this blog post has garnered over 134k (one hundred thirty-four thousand views)!! It has reached a vast amount of people so they can hear first hand from an enlightened lama how beneficial Dorje Shugden is!! Many wonderful people who seek knowledge and wisdom will benefit from this and I rejoice.

    In his love for me, over 30 years ago Kyabje Zong Rinpoche personally instructed me to practice Dorje Shugden and I know he would never give me anything that would harm me or anyone else. As such, I have great confidence and I share Dorje Shugden with thousands including family, close friends, benefactors and so many others who need help because I know he will benefit others as he did me. His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche was a Bodhisattva who lived his life only to benefit others. Whatever promises I have made to him, I will never abandon. I will forever bow to his holy feet.

    Humbly, Tsem Rinpoche

    Click here to see this beautiful post with many vintage photos- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=122352

    P.S. To this post I have recently added translations of these speeches into Japanese, Nepalese and Spanish.
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 12:44 PM
    Queen Genepil, the last queen of Mongolia and last wife of the last Mongol Khan. Interesting short biography of this Mongol queen. At age 33 in her 5 months pregnancy , she was executed with her father because of her involvement with the Japanese forces . Queen Genepil had in fact concealed many mystery and past secrets in the palace unknown to many. She looked pretty in the queen costumes with a beautiful head gear, just wondering if nowadays the Mongolian Queen wear this . We are considered fortunate able to see this rare costumes. Interesting history to read.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/last-queen-of-mongolia
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 12:43 PM
    Interesting news …… Oklahoma Supreme Court had decide to separate religion and politics. The history of the world, we can see clearly how the involvement of government in religious matters has caused great discrimination among the communities. An example in the Tibetan Leardership , because of the ban on Dorje Shugen practice it cause hardships, suffering ,discrimination, disharmony, and many more. For the past decades , many of the Tibetans in exiles had suffered badly. Where religion is concern ,politics should not comes in. Freedom of religion is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or community, and so forth without government influence and intervention. It also includes the freedom to change one’s religion or beliefs. No government should speak against another religion or any religion. Peace, harmony and happiness can only materialised with respect among and within all people. Everyone of us should be given the choice to what we want to pray.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/current-affairs/the-ten-commandments-monument.html
  • Sofi
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 08:38 AM
    Dorje Shugden Gyenze to Increase Life, Merits and Wealth

    In one of our private sessions, I asked Kensur Rinpoche, “If we fully rely on Dorje Shugden, and focus on Dorje Shugden, technically can we become fully enlightened?” And Kensur Rinpoche thought about it and he said, “Yes, we definitely can become fully enlightened because Dorje Shugden is a fully enlightened being.”

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/dorje-shugden-gyenze-to-increase-life-merits-and-wealth.html
  • Sofi
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 08:25 AM
    Bodhi Tree Vajra Yogini

    All of Rinpoche’s Buddha statues are beautiful and yet, what is so special about this particular Buddha Vajra Yogini? Did she perform some miracle? Well to me this beautiful Lady Vajra Yogini gave us the best miracle! Find out what and share with us your thoughts.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/bodhi-tree-vajra-yogini.html
  • Sofi
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 08:21 AM
    THIS IS ME IN HOLLYWOOD IN THE 80′S

    Rinpoche in his youth enjoying Hollywood, yet never giving up on any of his duties and practices. Read of Rinpoche’s survival after he left home to pursue his dream.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/this-is-me-in-hollywood-in-the-80s.html
  • Sofi
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 08:15 AM
    5-Foot Gyenze Statue Arrives in Kechara Forest Retreat

    With this in mind, His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche envisioned and built a chapel specifically dedicated to Gyenze and his beneficial energies. Located at the front of Kechara Forest Retreat, it has become a place of spiritual pilgrimage for many people of all backgrounds and Gyenze has manifested signs of fulfilling people’s wishes.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/kechara-13-depts/5foot-gyenze-statue-arrives-in-kechara-forest-retreat.html
  • Tsem Rinpoche
    Friday, Dec 14. 2018 12:56 AM
    Very inspirational movie on the race divide in the US-good story line, good acting & lessons to be learned- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-65f3ISewk


  • Yee Yin
    Thursday, Dec 13. 2018 09:47 PM
    Tsem Rinpoche has been very kind to commission many Dorje Shugden paintings for us to download for free. These Dorje Shugden images are depicted in different styles and cultures or painting techniques. Even though Dorje Shugden is depicted in different styles but the iconography is according to the scripture, which is the most important thing to consider.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/art-architecture/which-dorje-shugden-style-is-your-favourite.html
    [no sender]

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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Concept: Tsem Rinpoche
Technical: Lew Kwan Leng, Justin Ripley, Yong Swee Keong
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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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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.
Kechara Saraswati Arts (KSA) offers a comprehensive statue and tsa tsa painting service. We are able to paint both the face and body, using traditional Tibetan techniques and materials.

KSA can transform a ‘bare’ or ‘raw’ object of art into a living masterpiece through a variety of painting techniques. There are several ‘finishes’ to choose from. Be it an ‘antique’ look, a fully-painted colourful finish or a simple ‘gold dusted look’, your imagination and heart’s wishes are fulfilled through KSA’s mastery and artistry in action.

Our team have learnt the techniques of traditional statue painting from the finest artists of India, Tibet and Nepal. Through months of intense training and practice, our talented artists have mastered the art of painting both peaceful and wrathful features.
yesterday
Kechara Saraswati Arts (KSA) offers a comprehensive statue and tsa tsa painting service. We are able to paint both the face and body, using traditional Tibetan techniques and materials. KSA can transform a ‘bare’ or ‘raw’ object of art into a living masterpiece through a variety of painting techniques. There are several ‘finishes’ to choose from. Be it an ‘antique’ look, a fully-painted colourful finish or a simple ‘gold dusted look’, your imagination and heart’s wishes are fulfilled through KSA’s mastery and artistry in action. Our team have learnt the techniques of traditional statue painting from the finest artists of India, Tibet and Nepal. Through months of intense training and practice, our talented artists have mastered the art of painting both peaceful and wrathful features.
Unusual depiction of Lord Manjushri. I like it.
2 days ago
Unusual depiction of Lord Manjushri. I like it.
Stunning!!!
2 days ago
Stunning!!!
If we have eye problems, this is a good practice and it\'s simple- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=180488
2 days ago
If we have eye problems, this is a good practice and it's simple- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=180488
Many times in the morning my Oser girl will go sunbathe. She really enjoys it. Tsem Rinpoche
3 days ago
Many times in the morning my Oser girl will go sunbathe. She really enjoys it. Tsem Rinpoche
My Oser girl is very photogenic. Tsem Rinpoche
3 days ago
My Oser girl is very photogenic. Tsem Rinpoche
Vintage stunning thangka of Lord Tsongkapa with many other enlightened beings.
3 days ago
Vintage stunning thangka of Lord Tsongkapa with many other enlightened beings.
Beautiful antique thangka of Sakya Pandita
3 days ago
Beautiful antique thangka of Sakya Pandita
The last Lama-Ruler of Mongolia was 8th Jebtsundamba Khutughtu. He did not have a good ending as Mongolia \'fell\'. Read about him- https://bit.ly/2UD83oa
3 days ago
The last Lama-Ruler of Mongolia was 8th Jebtsundamba Khutughtu. He did not have a good ending as Mongolia 'fell'. Read about him- https://bit.ly/2UD83oa
Last Queen of Mongolia-Very interesting what happened to her and tragic too- https://bit.ly/2GcfhfF
3 days ago
Last Queen of Mongolia-Very interesting what happened to her and tragic too- https://bit.ly/2GcfhfF
The famous and powerful state oracle of Mongolia- Interesting and must read- 
 https://bit.ly/2Py3QhI
3 days ago
The famous and powerful state oracle of Mongolia- Interesting and must read- https://bit.ly/2Py3QhI
1984 Los Angeles-Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination. Read more-  https://bit.ly/2C5OM7l
4 days ago
1984 Los Angeles-Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination. Read more- https://bit.ly/2C5OM7l
Nice to see Blog Chat going on
4 days ago
Nice to see Blog Chat going on
In the middle of the metropolitan city of Bangkok near the upmarket shopping district is a chapel dedicated to Tara right in the centre of town. Lovely. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
In the middle of the metropolitan city of Bangkok near the upmarket shopping district is a chapel dedicated to Tara right in the centre of town. Lovely. Tsem Rinpoche
Cheeky and cute little He Wei is telling you to get a Dorje Shugden pamphlet now!!!
4 days ago
Cheeky and cute little He Wei is telling you to get a Dorje Shugden pamphlet now!!!
My little cute Oser girl doggie is always nearby. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
My little cute Oser girl doggie is always nearby. Tsem Rinpoche
Tsem Rinpoche\'s father with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The little girl is his brother\'s daughter. Her name is Tara.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche's father with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The little girl is his brother's daughter. Her name is Tara.
Our Gyenze Chapel in Kechara Forest Retreat is visited by people from all over Malaysia now. Many have had their wishes fulfilled.
4 days ago
Our Gyenze Chapel in Kechara Forest Retreat is visited by people from all over Malaysia now. Many have had their wishes fulfilled.
Very nice class going on in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Learning Dharma is the key to overcoming our mind that is unsettled. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
Very nice class going on in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Learning Dharma is the key to overcoming our mind that is unsettled. Tsem Rinpoche
Left to right: 103rd Gaden Tripa Lobsang Tenzin, Gaden Shartse Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche and Tsem Rinpoche.
4 days ago
Left to right: 103rd Gaden Tripa Lobsang Tenzin, Gaden Shartse Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche and Tsem Rinpoche.
Tsem Rinpoche holding the young incarnation of Zong Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Monastery.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche holding the young incarnation of Zong Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Monastery.
In Gaden Monastery.

Left to right: Tenzin Trinley Rinpoche, Kari Kentrul Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Tsem Rinpoche, Gyalkhangtse Rinpoche, Kating Rinpoche and Genpa Rinpoche. Extreme right is the senior Dorje Shugden oracle of Gaden Monastery, Choyang Dulzin Kuten.
4 days ago
In Gaden Monastery. Left to right: Tenzin Trinley Rinpoche, Kari Kentrul Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Tsem Rinpoche, Gyalkhangtse Rinpoche, Kating Rinpoche and Genpa Rinpoche. Extreme right is the senior Dorje Shugden oracle of Gaden Monastery, Choyang Dulzin Kuten.
Tsem Rinpoche with the Abbots of Gaden Jangtse Monastery and Gaden Shartse Monastery escorting a photo of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This is in the main prayer hall of Gaden Monastery.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche with the Abbots of Gaden Jangtse Monastery and Gaden Shartse Monastery escorting a photo of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This is in the main prayer hall of Gaden Monastery.
Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Monastery
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Monastery
My father Mr. Lobsang Gyatso and myself. He came to Gaden Monastery to visit me. While he was alive he lived in Taiwan. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
My father Mr. Lobsang Gyatso and myself. He came to Gaden Monastery to visit me. While he was alive he lived in Taiwan. Tsem Rinpoche
The most precious Buddha Shakyamuni of Tibet. He is called Jowo Rinpoche and He is in the central Cathedral of Lhasa, Tibet. All the crowns, earrings, necklaces and jewels were constructed and offered by Je Tsongkapa onto this Buddha 600 years ago. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
The most precious Buddha Shakyamuni of Tibet. He is called Jowo Rinpoche and He is in the central Cathedral of Lhasa, Tibet. All the crowns, earrings, necklaces and jewels were constructed and offered by Je Tsongkapa onto this Buddha 600 years ago. Tsem Rinpoche
Click on picture to enlarge, I have something to share.
4 days ago
Click on picture to enlarge, I have something to share.
This is how you can practice Tantric Buddhas without initiation or commitment- https://bit.ly/2PstN28
5 days ago
This is how you can practice Tantric Buddhas without initiation or commitment- https://bit.ly/2PstN28
Many great lamas are pictured here together. I have met many of them and they are very learned and holy. Tsem Rinpoche
6 days ago
Many great lamas are pictured here together. I have met many of them and they are very learned and holy. Tsem Rinpoche
Do share this picture message with friends.
6 days ago
Do share this picture message with friends.
Faster, Faster!!! Can\'t you go any faster! We are late for our puja! Read on- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179695
6 days ago
Faster, Faster!!! Can't you go any faster! We are late for our puja! Read on- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179695
Has Pastor David achieved enlightenment under the bodhi tree?
6 days ago
Has Pastor David achieved enlightenment under the bodhi tree?
Very nice. Pastor Seng Piow\'s beautiful Kalarupa statue has finally arrived.
6 days ago
Very nice. Pastor Seng Piow's beautiful Kalarupa statue has finally arrived.
Animals are made to suffer so much. We should never add to their sufferings. We should never beat, abuse, use, kill or eat them. We should be loving with them or just leave them to live their lives.~Tsem Rinpoche
6 days ago
Animals are made to suffer so much. We should never add to their sufferings. We should never beat, abuse, use, kill or eat them. We should be loving with them or just leave them to live their lives.~Tsem Rinpoche
It will break your heart, but you need to see this- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179733



Thank you, Tsem Rinpoche
7 days ago
It will break your heart, but you need to see this- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179733 Thank you, Tsem Rinpoche
Find out what happened to this baby- https://bit.ly/2RdxM4o
7 days ago
Find out what happened to this baby- https://bit.ly/2RdxM4o
A very sad true story

Please sign to help end animal experimentation:
https://www.change.org/p/tell-neutrogena-to-stop-all-animal-testing
7 days ago
A very sad true story Please sign to help end animal experimentation: https://www.change.org/p/tell-neutrogena-to-stop-all-animal-testing
My grandaunt Nirgidma whom I have never met but learning more about her now. She lived and died in France. Tsem Rinpoche
7 days ago
My grandaunt Nirgidma whom I have never met but learning more about her now. She lived and died in France. Tsem Rinpoche
Did you know we can grow vegetables under water contrary to need the bright sun, earth and on the surface? Very interesting- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179595
7 days ago
Did you know we can grow vegetables under water contrary to need the bright sun, earth and on the surface? Very interesting- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179595
A very rare Buddha hardly seen. He is said to help us overcome laziness. Understand more- https://bit.ly/2EaEtk3
7 days ago
A very rare Buddha hardly seen. He is said to help us overcome laziness. Understand more- https://bit.ly/2EaEtk3
 
 
When you are sleeping, do you get disturbed by supernatural entities or re-occurring dreams that are frightening? Do you sometimes feel a presence in the room with you when sleeping? I have something here that might help you as I have been asked many times about these occurrences. - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179116
2 weeks ago
When you are sleeping, do you get disturbed by supernatural entities or re-occurring dreams that are frightening? Do you sometimes feel a presence in the room with you when sleeping? I have something here that might help you as I have been asked many times about these occurrences. - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179116
Foretelling the future in the Tibetan tradition- https://bit.ly/2AKzSl8
2 weeks ago
Foretelling the future in the Tibetan tradition- https://bit.ly/2AKzSl8
Malaysian Brickfields Chief Monk Sri Dhammaratana Fosters Harmony with Tibetan Buddhism- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=178837
2 weeks ago
Malaysian Brickfields Chief Monk Sri Dhammaratana Fosters Harmony with Tibetan Buddhism- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=178837
马来西亚十五碑锡兰佛寺达摩拉达纳长老与藏传佛教界建交- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179077
2 weeks ago
马来西亚十五碑锡兰佛寺达摩拉达纳长老与藏传佛教界建交- https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=179077
For high resolution download of this beautiful artwork of Dorje Shugden, please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
2 weeks ago
For high resolution download of this beautiful artwork of Dorje Shugden, please click here: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
A stupa built dedicated to Dorje Shugden in Tibet.
2 weeks ago
A stupa built dedicated to Dorje Shugden in Tibet.
Repetitive Bad Dreams Disturbing Your Sleep?This might help you- https://bit.ly/2TTp8tw
2 weeks ago
Repetitive Bad Dreams Disturbing Your Sleep?This might help you- https://bit.ly/2TTp8tw
My sacred and ancient Bodhgaya Vajra Yogini immersed in red lights in her casing. So fortunate to even hear her name in this Kaliyuga times. Tsem Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
My sacred and ancient Bodhgaya Vajra Yogini immersed in red lights in her casing. So fortunate to even hear her name in this Kaliyuga times. Tsem Rinpoche
Click on "View All Photos" above to view more images

Videos On The Go

Please click on the images to watch video
  • Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    11 hours 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.
    3 days 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
    4 days 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.
    4 days 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 days 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
  • Tsem Rinpoche’s dog, Oser girl always sits on Rinpoche’s chair. When Rinpoche’s other dog, Dharma tries to get into the chair, he is chased away. Oser is the boss. She is possessive. Cute.
    2 weeks ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s dog, Oser girl always sits on Rinpoche’s chair. When Rinpoche’s other dog, Dharma tries to get into the chair, he is chased away. Oser is the boss. She is possessive. Cute.
  • Lama Yeshe talks about how to practice at the beginning and at the end of each day during teachings given in London during the Lamas’ first European teaching tour in 1975. Lama Yeshe was a brilliant teacher and I wanted to share this with everyone so his teachings can reach more people. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 weeks ago
    Lama Yeshe talks about how to practice at the beginning and at the end of each day during teachings given in London during the Lamas’ first European teaching tour in 1975. Lama Yeshe was a brilliant teacher and I wanted to share this with everyone so his teachings can reach more people. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Our beautiful Dorje Shugden shop in the busiest part of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Many tourists visit our store and this area.
    3 weeks ago
    Our beautiful Dorje Shugden shop in the busiest part of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Many tourists visit our store and this area.
  • Living off the grid in Australia
    3 weeks ago
    Living off the grid in Australia
    A Jill Redwood is a jack of all trades, Jill built her own house on her property and lives entirely off the grid with no mains power or town water, mobile reception or television. Living on around $80 a week, Jill has over sixty animals to keep her company and an abundant garden that out serves as an organic supermarket right at her doorstep. Her main expenses are animal feed and the rates on her property. Watch this incredible three minute video and be inspired to live differently.
  • Kyabje Dagom Choktrul Rinpoche offering gold on a 350 year-old Dorje Shugden statue in his chapel in Lhasa. This is how Tibetans show homage and pay respect to a holy image. This chapel and statue of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa dedicated to Dorje Shugden was built by the Great 5th Dalai Lama. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 weeks ago
    Kyabje Dagom Choktrul Rinpoche offering gold on a 350 year-old Dorje Shugden statue in his chapel in Lhasa. This is how Tibetans show homage and pay respect to a holy image. This chapel and statue of Dorje Shugden in Lhasa dedicated to Dorje Shugden was built by the Great 5th Dalai Lama. Tsem Rinpoche
  • My sweet little Oser girl is so photogenic and adorable. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 weeks ago
    My sweet little Oser girl is so photogenic and adorable. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Heart Sutra sang by a monk for the modern crowd. Very interesting and beautiful. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 weeks ago
    Heart Sutra sang by a monk for the modern crowd. Very interesting and beautiful. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Submerging powerful mantra stones in water at Kechara Forest Retreat in Malaysia.
    3 weeks ago
    Submerging powerful mantra stones in water at Kechara Forest Retreat in Malaysia.
  • Wylfred explains in Chinese the benefits of mantra stones at Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia   |  黄明川以华语解释在马来西亚克切拉禅修林的玛尼堆(刻有心咒的石头)的利益
    3 weeks ago
    Wylfred explains in Chinese the benefits of mantra stones at Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia | 黄明川以华语解释在马来西亚克切拉禅修林的玛尼堆(刻有心咒的石头)的利益
  • My Oser girl and Dharma boy love the verandah where they can see the greens. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 weeks ago
    My Oser girl and Dharma boy love the verandah where they can see the greens. Tsem Rinpoche
  • If there were more schools like this, then our kids would grow up with more caring awareness and kind emotions towards our environment and the people around them. They would grow up knowing that chasing materialism is not going to bring any happiness. I hope very much more schools like this would materialise. I hope in my future life I can attend a school like this. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 month ago
    If there were more schools like this, then our kids would grow up with more caring awareness and kind emotions towards our environment and the people around them. They would grow up knowing that chasing materialism is not going to bring any happiness. I hope very much more schools like this would materialise. I hope in my future life I can attend a school like this. Tsem Rinpoche
  • My Oser girl and Dharma boy in their cosy little bedroom next to me sleeping away. Cute.
    1 month ago
    My Oser girl and Dharma boy in their cosy little bedroom next to me sleeping away. Cute.
  • It is incredible how smart Oser girl is. She can steal the treat away from Dharma boy and so casually. Wow. She is so smart. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    It is incredible how smart Oser girl is. She can steal the treat away from Dharma boy and so casually. Wow. She is so smart. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Kechara Forest Retreat Dogs. Dharma boy is tiny and trying to scare off big boy Johnny. Johnny is so patient and just ignores Dharma. They are both cute and both live in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Kechara Forest Retreat Dogs. Dharma boy is tiny and trying to scare off big boy Johnny. Johnny is so patient and just ignores Dharma. They are both cute and both live in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Tsem Rinpoche
  • BREAKING EYEWITNESS FOOTAGE: Workers violently punched, kicked, cussed out, & left sheep to die on dozens of Scottish farms 💔 Sheep bled after rough shearing & were stitched up without painkillers.–From Peta2
    2 months ago
    BREAKING EYEWITNESS FOOTAGE: Workers violently punched, kicked, cussed out, & left sheep to die on dozens of Scottish farms 💔 Sheep bled after rough shearing & were stitched up without painkillers.–From Peta2
  • Super cute seal and so gentle. Must watch this video and realize we are all one. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    Super cute seal and so gentle. Must watch this video and realize we are all one. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Legendary Heart sings “Stairway to Heaven” in tribute to Led Zeppelin. Incredible tribute and rendition. Everyone is blown away. TR
    2 months ago
    Legendary Heart sings “Stairway to Heaven” in tribute to Led Zeppelin. Incredible tribute and rendition. Everyone is blown away. TR
  • In a low-income neighbourhood, this man is growing his own organic produce, and giving extras away for free to neighbours who can’t afford fresh ingredients from the store. Must watch!
    2 months ago
    In a low-income neighbourhood, this man is growing his own organic produce, and giving extras away for free to neighbours who can’t afford fresh ingredients from the store. Must watch!
  • Neat little video
    2 months ago
    Neat little video
  • It is nice to see sangha release animals into the wild. Gen Kunchok Palden and Chodrak contributed to releasing of frogs back into the wild. This is wonderful. Compassion is the mainstay of all spirituality. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    It is nice to see sangha release animals into the wild. Gen Kunchok Palden and Chodrak contributed to releasing of frogs back into the wild. This is wonderful. Compassion is the mainstay of all spirituality. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This is a special ‘carpet’ for dogs that you hide their snacks and they have to go digging for it. It is challenging and fun where they use their nose, paws and all to dig and find the snacks in between. This dog play carpet is ordered online. You can see little Zopa baby who is a Kechara resident doggie looking for the snacks in this cute video. She is kept busy and entertained! Tsem Rinpoche
    2 months ago
    This is a special ‘carpet’ for dogs that you hide their snacks and they have to go digging for it. It is challenging and fun where they use their nose, paws and all to dig and find the snacks in between. This dog play carpet is ordered online. You can see little Zopa baby who is a Kechara resident doggie looking for the snacks in this cute video. She is kept busy and entertained! Tsem Rinpoche
  • Kechara Forest Retreat in Bentong, Malaysia’s dog Pema is super adorable and cute. Everyone loves her. She is wearing a Manjushri blessing pendant.
    3 months ago
    Kechara Forest Retreat in Bentong, Malaysia’s dog Pema is super adorable and cute. Everyone loves her. She is wearing a Manjushri blessing pendant.
  • Spontaneous trance in Tibet by powerful healing Protector Dorje Shugden of a monk who usually takes trance.
    3 months ago
    Spontaneous trance in Tibet by powerful healing Protector Dorje Shugden of a monk who usually takes trance.
  • 喀切玛波向詹杜固仁波切献供养
    3 months ago
    喀切玛波向詹杜固仁波切献供养
    喀切玛波护法降神,向詹杜固仁波切献供曼扎及身语意之供养,同时也加持马来西亚克切拉禅修林道场。喀切玛波护法乃古时候的紫玛护法,他是藏地首座佛教寺院桑耶寺的护法神
  • Huge Chenresig statue being built. Very beautiful.
    3 months ago
    Huge Chenresig statue being built. Very beautiful.
  • This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    1 years 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.
    1 years ago
    Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
  • BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
    1 years ago
    BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
  • Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
    1 years ago
    Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
  • Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
    1 years ago
    Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
  • Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    1 years 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.
    1 years ago
    Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
  • Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
    1 years ago
    Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
  • Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant  Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
    1 years ago
    Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
  • Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
    1 years 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
    1 years 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.
    1 years 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!!
    1 years ago
    This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
  • SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    1 years 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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CHAT PICTURES

24 hours ago
1984 Los Angeles- Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination.
4 days ago
1984 Los Angeles- Left to right: Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen, His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, monk assistant to Zong Rinpoche and the 18 year old Tsem Rinpoche prior to ordination.
Very nice class going on in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Learning Dharma is the key to overcoming our mind that is unsettled. Tsem Rinpoche
4 days ago
Very nice class going on in Kechara Forest Retreat-Malaysia. Learning Dharma is the key to overcoming our mind that is unsettled. Tsem Rinpoche
Tsem Rinpoche holding the young incarnation of Zong Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Monastery.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche holding the young incarnation of Zong Rinpoche in Gaden Shartse Monastery.
Left to right: 103rd Gaden Tripa Lobsang Tenzin, Gaden Shartse Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche and Tsem Rinpoche.
4 days ago
Left to right: 103rd Gaden Tripa Lobsang Tenzin, Gaden Shartse Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche and Tsem Rinpoche.
In Gaden Monastery. Left to right: Tenzin Trinley Rinpoche, Kari Kentrul Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Tsem Rinpoche, Gyalkhangtse Rinpoche, Kating Rinpoche and Genpa Rinpoche. Extreme right is the senior Dorje Shugden oracle of Gaden Monastery, Choyang Dulzin Kuten.
4 days ago
In Gaden Monastery. Left to right: Tenzin Trinley Rinpoche, Kari Kentrul Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Tsem Rinpoche, Gyalkhangtse Rinpoche, Kating Rinpoche and Genpa Rinpoche. Extreme right is the senior Dorje Shugden oracle of Gaden Monastery, Choyang Dulzin Kuten.
Tsem Rinpoche with the Abbots of Gaden Jangtse Monastery and Gaden Shartse Monastery escorting a photo of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This is in the main prayer hall of Gaden Monastery.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche with the Abbots of Gaden Jangtse Monastery and Gaden Shartse Monastery escorting a photo of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This is in the main prayer hall of Gaden Monastery.
Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Monastery.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche in Gaden Monastery.
Tsem Rinpoche's father Mr. Lobsang Gyatso and Rinpoche. He came to Gaden Monastery to visit Rinpoche. While he was alive he lived in Taiwan.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche's father Mr. Lobsang Gyatso and Rinpoche. He came to Gaden Monastery to visit Rinpoche. While he was alive he lived in Taiwan.
Tsem Rinpoche's father with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The little girl is Rinpoche's brother's daughter. Her name is Tara.
4 days ago
Tsem Rinpoche's father with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The little girl is Rinpoche's brother's daughter. Her name is Tara.
4 days ago
Thanks to Yong Soo Chin for sponsoring today's lunch ingredients and also donation to Kechara Food Bank in memorial of her father-in-law Mr Ng Seng Kee. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
5 days ago
Thanks to Yong Soo Chin for sponsoring today's lunch ingredients and also donation to Kechara Food Bank in memorial of her father-in-law Mr Ng Seng Kee. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Efforts to feed the poor are nothing new. Kechara Soup Kitchen practices of collecting food waste and turning it into meals for the hungry. The generous support from Tesco Malaysia and AEON Retail Malaysia have made it possible for us to continue with this contribution to those less fortunate. Thank you very much! #Kechara #foodbank #hungerknowsnobarriers - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
6 days ago
Efforts to feed the poor are nothing new. Kechara Soup Kitchen practices of collecting food waste and turning it into meals for the hungry. The generous support from Tesco Malaysia and AEON Retail Malaysia have made it possible for us to continue with this contribution to those less fortunate. Thank you very much! #Kechara #foodbank #hungerknowsnobarriers - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Lovely DIY candle made to offer to Buddha. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Lovely DIY candle made to offer to Buddha. Lin Mun KSDS
Isn’t it great to see family engaging in pilgrimage & dharma work together. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Isn’t it great to see family engaging in pilgrimage & dharma work together. Lin Mun KSDS
Pastor Gim Lee gave an interesting introduction to Green Tara during the recentl pilgrimage cum camp event. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Pastor Gim Lee gave an interesting introduction to Green Tara during the recentl pilgrimage cum camp event. Lin Mun KSDS
So glad to see family doing light offering to Buddha together. Great bonding. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
So glad to see family doing light offering to Buddha together. Great bonding. Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS pilgrimage cum camp 2018 - Prostration to Lama Tsongkhapa. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
KSDS pilgrimage cum camp 2018 - Prostration to Lama Tsongkhapa. Lin Mun KSDS
Teacher Melinda & teacher Asyley guided the youngest children to take refuge & do prostration to Dzambala. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Teacher Melinda & teacher Asyley guided the youngest children to take refuge & do prostration to Dzambala. Lin Mun KSDS
Zoey is a happy girl & enjoy coming to dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Zoey is a happy girl & enjoy coming to dharma class. Lin Mun KSDS
Video recording for KSDS Graduation 2018. Lin Mun KSDS
7 days ago
Video recording for KSDS Graduation 2018. Lin Mun KSDS
1 week ago
Rain or shine we will be there to distribute surplus food to the needy families living around Jlns Sungai. Thank you to all volunteers for turning up on a wet afternoon. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 week ago
Rain or shine we will be there to distribute surplus food to the needy families living around Jlns Sungai. Thank you to all volunteers for turning up on a wet afternoon. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
A visit was paid to this family from Petaling Jaya. Our client’s wife has admitted to hospital due to stroke. Therefore, client has to stop working temporarily because he needs to take care of the young daughter who has learning disabilities. Let’s send best wishes to the wife for a speedy recovery! ❤️ #Kechara #foodbank #care - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
1 week ago
A visit was paid to this family from Petaling Jaya. Our client’s wife has admitted to hospital due to stroke. Therefore, client has to stop working temporarily because he needs to take care of the young daughter who has learning disabilities. Let’s send best wishes to the wife for a speedy recovery! ❤️ #Kechara #foodbank #care - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
The threatening rain and the shortage of volunteers tonight did not stopped us from our regular Monday night distribution. Kudos to all who turned up to help. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 weeks ago
The threatening rain and the shortage of volunteers tonight did not stopped us from our regular Monday night distribution. Kudos to all who turned up to help. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
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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