Madame Blavatsky: Mother of Modern Spirituality

By | Apr 11, 2018 | Views: 2,500

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(By Tsem Rinpoche and Joy Kam)

Born on 12th August 1831 in Yekaterinoslav (now Dnipropetrovsk), a town near the Dnieper river in Ukraine, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky is considered one of the world’s most extraordinary female spiritualists. Apart from being a controversial figure of the 19th century, she was a renowned occultist, spirit medium, and author of the most influential occult book to date — The Secret Doctrine.

“… Madame Blavatsky … stands out as the fountainhead of modern occult thought, and was either the originator and/or populariser of many of the ideas and terms which have a century later been assembled within the New Age Movement. The Theosophical Society, which she co-founded, has been the major advocate of occult philosophy in the West and the single most important avenue of Eastern teaching to the West.”

J. Gordon Melton, Jerome Clark and Aidan A. Kelly, editors, New Age Almanac, Detroit, Michigan, Gale Research Inc., 1991, p. 16.

Self-educated, Helena Blavatsky’s deep interest in esotericism began in her teenage years, and from there, it grew until she became one of the most influential thinkers of modern spirituality. She opened the doors to a new age of spiritual movements by introducing Eastern esoteric concepts to the Western world.

Blavatsky also led a very controversial life. She claimed to have embarked on a series of travels all around Europe, the Americas, and India in 1849. During these travels, she came across a group of adepts, the “Masters of the Ancient Wisdom.” They apparently sent her exploring the roof of the world, Shigatse in Tibet, where she was trained to develop psychic powers of her own. Biographers and critics have debated whether these travels were fabricated by Blavatsky or if she spent most of her time in Europe during the period she claimed this all took place. Regardless, whether it was true or false, one thing is for sure — she started a movement that dared to challenge the norms and belief systems of having only one almighty God. Through these endeavours, she gained many like-minded followers and students who contributed greatly towards the shape of spirituality today.

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In the early 1870s, Helena Blavatsky became involved in the Spiritualist movement. She defended the authenticity of the existence of Spiritualist phenomena and debated with mainstream Spiritualists that the entities she contacted were spirits of the dead. Later, in 1873, she moved to America and became friends with renowned journalist and lawyer Henry Steel Olcott, who was also interested in spirituality. It was Olcott who made her well-known as a spirit medium, and her friendship with Henry Olcott not only gave her publicity but also invited accusations that she was a fraud due to his overt promotion of her.

Together with Henry Olcott and William Quan Judge, Helena Blavatsky co-founded the Theosophical Society in 1875 in New York. She then published Isis Unveiled, a book that revealed the history, scope, and development of the Occult Sciences and her Theosophical world-view. Blavatsky defined Theosophy as “the synthesis of science, religion and philosophy“, which she associated closely with the esoteric doctrines of Neoplatonism and Hermeticism. She proclaimed she was reviving an “ancient wisdom” that she believed was the reason behind the existence of various world religions. She was soon revered as “The Founding Mother of Occult in America” in the words of American author Kurt Vonnegut.

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In 1880, Blavatsky and Olcott relocated to India and made connections with the Hindu reform movement called Arya Samaj. That year, she and Olcott also became the first Westerners to convert to Buddhism. The Theosophical Society continued to flourish in India, despite opposition from the British administration. However, the Society also experienced internal issues when Blavatsky was accused of and criticised for creating false psychic phenomena, though these accusations could not be proven either way.

Blavatsky was larger than life and very controversial indeed. She had a huge following, her supporters considered her an enlightened guru, and she was hailed as an icon – the Mother of Modern Spirituality. On the other hand, there was another group of people who rejected her and scorned her as a fraud.

Regardless, there is no doubt that her Theosophical doctrines introduced and spearheaded the spread of Buddhism and Hinduism in the West. Her doctrines also helped develop Western esoteric subjects such as Anthroposophy, Ariosophy and the New Age Movement.

 

Early Life

A painting of young Blavatsky with her mother, titled "Two Helens”

A painting of young Blavatsky with her mother, titled “Two Helens”

Helena Petrovna von Hahn was born into an aristocratic Russian-German family. She was the daughter of Colonel Peter von Hahn and Helena de Fadeyev, a well-known Russian novelist and granddaughter of the talented Princess Helena Dolgorukov, a writer and renowned botanist. Helena Petrovna was baptised into the Russian Orthodox Church immediately after she was born.

As a child, Helena moved from one place to another; due to her father’s career in the Russian Imperial Military, the family had to go wherever he was posted in the Russian Empire. This is probably one of the reasons she was so comfortable leading a nomadic lifestyle in her adulthood.

Young Helena P. Blavatsky (1850s – early 1860s)

Young Helena P. Blavatsky (1850s – early 1860s)

The oldest child in the family, Helena Petrovna had a younger brother named Sasha, who died when she was two years old. At that time, her family lived in an army township that did not have the medical facilities needed to save his life. Then in 1835, she moved with her mother to Odessa, the third most populated city in the Ukraine. It was there that her mother gave birth to her sister, Vera Petrovna. Helena’s maternal grandfather, Andrei Fadeyev, was also posted in the same city as a civil administrator for the Russian Imperial Government.

In 1836, Helena’s family relocated to Saint Petersburg. Her mother was fond of the city and this is where she began her writing career under the pseudonym “Zenaida R-va”, authoring novels and translating the works of the famous English author and poet, Edward Bulwer-Lytton.

Helena Blavatsky around 1950s

Helena Blavatsky in the 1950s

A year later, in 1837, Helena’s grandfather was assigned to be the trustee for the Kalmyk people in Central Asia. Helena and her mother accompanied him to Astrakhan, where they became friends with Tumen, a Kalmyk leader who was a Tibetan Buddhist. Kalmyks are usually practitioners of Tibetan Buddhism, and this was when Helena first encountered the religion.

In 1838, Helena’s mother reunited with her husband and moved the family back to Poltava. She taught young Helena how to play the piano and arranged for her to have dance lessons. Unfortunately, Helena’s mother was not in the peak of health, and so they moved back to Odessa, where young Helena learned English from her British governess. Not long after that, the whole family relocated to Saratov, and in June 1840, she welcomed a baby brother named Leonid. After Leonid’s birth, they moved to Poland for a short period of time before returning to Odessa. This is when her mother’s health deteriorated further and in June 1842, she passed away from tuberculosis. She was only 28.

Helena Blavatsky’s mother, Helena de Fadeyev or Helena Andreyevna von Hahn (granddaughter of the talented Princess Helena Dolgorukov) who was a writer as well as a renowned botanist (1814-1842)

Helena Blavatsky’s mother, Helena de Fadeyev or Helena Andreyevna von Hahn, was the granddaughter of the talented Princess Helena Dolgorukov, a writer and renowned botanist

After her mother passed away, Helena’s maternal grandparents took in all three children. They moved to Saratov where their grandfather, Andrei, was the Governor. Richard Davenport-Hines, a historian, described young Helena as “a petted, wayward, invalid child” and a “beguiling story-teller”. There are several accounts by her relatives explaining how little Helena would socialise with children from the lower-classes, often played pranks and enjoyed reading. Although she did not go to school like other children, she was well educated and even studied French, art and music, subjects which at that time were thought to help women find suitable suitors. Helena spent her holidays in Tumen’s Kalmyk summer camp with her grandparents, where she learnt to ride horses and read rudimentary Tibetan.

Different from other children her age, Helena was an exceptional, gifted child in touch with her psychic abilities and highly sensitive to the environment. She was also acutely aware of this difference between herself and other children. A rebel at heart, she would not always listen to authority. With her intelligence, linguistic abilities, talent in the arts and music, and her fearless passion for riding half-trained horses, it was clear that she was in tune with nature, her surroundings and those whom she met. From a young age, she sensed that she had a special mission that would somehow lead her towards dedicating her life to the service of others. She also believed she was guided and protected by some higher power to fulfil this purpose.

Blavatsky during her youth

Helena during her youth

Helena claimed she discovered her great-grandfather Prince Pavel Vasilevich Dolgorukov’s personal library while living in Saratov. It was in this library that she is said to have found various books on esoteric subjects, sparking her interest which rapidly grew over the years.

Her great-grandfather, Dolgorukov, was a Freemason and belonged to the Rite of Strict Observance. Rumour has it that he had met adventurers of the occult arts such as Alessandro Cagliostro, an Italian magician with the royal courts of Europe, and the Count of St. Germain, a great philosopher.

Around this time, it is said that Helena had strange visions of meeting a “mysterious Indian man”, whom she did meet in person later in life. According to her biographers, this was the first appearance of the “Masters” in Helena’s life.

Blavatsky’s maternal grandfather; Andrei Mihailovich de Fadeyev (1789-1867) and grandmother Princess Helena Dolgorukov (1789-1860)

Helena’s maternal grandfather, Andrei Mihailovich de Fadeyev (1789-1867) and grandmother Princess Helena Dolgorukov (1789-1860)

Helena spent one year living with her aunt, Yekaterina Andreyevna Witte, and then she moved to Tiflis, Georgia, where she befriended Alexander Vladimirovich Golitsyn from the princely family line of the Golitsyn noble houses. He was a Russian Freemason member and he greatly encouraged her interest in the esoteric arts. It was also during this time that Helena claimed to have had paranormal experiences, such as astral traveling and more visions of the “mysterious Indian man”.

A picture depicting the great masters with Blavatsky. Blavatsky said these masters appear to her in her visions, guiding her on a spiritual mission which led to establishing the Theosophical Society.

Helena Blavatsky and the great masters. Blavatsky said these masters appeared to her in her visions, guiding her on a spiritual mission which led up to the establishment of the Theosophical Society.

 

Travelling the World

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When Helena turned 17, she agreed to a marriage with the Vice Governor of Erivan Province, Nikifor Vladimirovich Blavatsky, a man in his forties. It is said she agreed to this marriage probably because she wanted to find a way to free herself from the environment she was in.

Helena was a rebel at heart, and so it is possible she plotted her way to freedom and independence. However, she claimed she married Nikifor because she was attracted to his belief in magic, an interest she shared. Before their wedding ceremony, it is said she tried to back out several times, but eventually went ahead with it. She was married on 7th July 1849 and from then on was known as Helena Blavatsky.

After the marriage, Blavatsky moved to Sardar Palace with her husband and later attempted to run away several times. Unfortunately, her attempts were not successful. Eventually, her husband relented and gave up, allowing her to return to her family. Her family sent two escorts, a servant and a maid, to accompany her on the journey back to Odessa where her father was living. The plan was to return to Saint Petersburg together with her father. However, this did not happen as Blavatsky escaped her escorts and bribed the captain of the ship she was on to take them to Kerch. She ended up in Constantinople, and this marked the beginning of Blavatsky’s travels around the world.

Blavatsky explored Turkey, Egypt, and Greece, and her father most likely financed her travels. Unfortunately, most of her activities cannot be verified accurately, as she kept no diary nor did she travel with companions. This is why Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, a historian of esotericism, noted that these travels were based solely on “her own largely uncorroborated accounts”, which were somewhat contradictory as they were “occasionally conflicting in their chronology”.

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Blavatsky claimed that while in Constantinople, she became friends with a Hungarian opera singer named Agardi Metrovitch, whom she met while saving him from being murdered. There she also met the Countess Sofia Kiselyova and together, they went travelling around Eastern Europe, Egypt and Greece. When she was in Cairo, she met Albert Rawson, an American art student who later wrote about the Middle East at great length. Apparently, they both visited and studied under the celebrated Coptic magician, Paulos Metamon, for a while.

Blavatsky went on to Paris in 1851, where she met Victor Michal, a spiritist-magnetiser and was greatly impressed by him. From there, she travelled to England and she claimed this was when she met the “mysterious Indian man”, whom she had visions of during her childhood. He was a Hindu teacher called Master Morya. Although it is unclear how they finally met due to conflicting versions of the story, one thing that was consistently mentioned and maintained by Blavatsky was that Morya had a special mission for her, and that he insisted she travel to Tibet.

The “mysterious Indian” man, Master Morya had a special mission for Blavatsky

The “mysterious Indian man”, Master Morya, had a special mission for Blavatsky

During the autumn of 1851, Blavatsky made her way to Asia from America. She was inspired by James Fenimore Cooper’s novels and was hoping to see Native American communities in Quebec. She wanted to meet their magico-religious specialists, but an unfortunate event occurred and she was robbed during her journey. Blavatsky blamed the corrupt influence of Christian missionaries for the Native American people’s ruthless actions. Hence, she headed South instead, making her way to New Orleans, Texas, Mexico, and the Andes and finally boarding a ship to Ceylon, eventually landing in Bombay.

Based on the correspondences Blavatsky had with Master Morya, she is said to have been following instructions given by him. Blavatsky spent two years in India and also attempted several times to get into Tibet but the British administration stopped her.

There are many stories regarding her travels that no one can guarantee are 100% accurate. In one account, Blavatsky claimed that when she was on her way back to Europe, before reaching England, she survived a shipwreck close to the Cape of Good Hope in 1854. While in England, she experienced hostility because she was Russian — it was the time of the Crimean War, when Russia and Britain were in conflict. She also had to work and landed a role as a musician at the Royal Philharmonic Society.

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Besides Europe, she also explored America, sailing through New York, where she came across Mr. Rawson whom she had befriended in Cairo. She continued on to Chicago, Salt Lake City and San Francisco. After that, she sailed back to India, passing through Japan. When she was in India, she explored the cities of Kashmir and Ladakh, and later journeyed to Burma.

Around 1856, she claimed to have made a second attempt to get into Tibet and this time, she succeeded. Blavatsky supposedly entered Tibet via Kashmir with a Tartar shaman as her companion. He was trying to get to Siberia and thought Blavatsky, being a Russian, could help him get in. Based on their stories, they ended up in Leh before getting lost and later joined a group of travelling Tartar shamans before returning to India once again. Blavatsky eventually went back to Europe through Madras and Java.

Blavatsky spent time in Germany and France before returning to her family in Pskov in 1858. Here is where she claimed to have experienced more paranormal phenomena, such as knocking and creaking sounds that followed her and furniture moving on its own in the house.

Giuseppe Garibaldi (1866) is an Italian general, politician and nationalist who personally commanded and fought in many military campaigns that led to the unification of Italy

Giuseppe Garibaldi (1866) was an Italian general, politician and nationalist who personally commanded and fought in many military campaigns that led to the unification of Italy

Two years later, in 1860, Blavatsky and her sister visited their maternal grandmother in Tiflis, where she met with Metrovitch, the Hungarian opera singer whom she had saved. In 1862, she reunited with her ex-husband Nikifor and they adopted a child, named Yuri. Unfortunately, Yuri passed away at age five, and he was buried with Metrovitch’s surname.

In 1864, Blavatsky went horse riding in Mingrelia when she fell and fractured her spine. This accident put her in a coma. As she recovered from her injury in Tiflis, she claimed to have gained full control over her psychic abilities.

After Blavatsky recovered, she continued to travel, this time to Italy, Transylvania and Serbia, where she may have studied the Kabbalah with a rabbi. Then in 1867, she visited the Balkans, Hungary and then returned to Italy, spending time in Venice, Florence and Mentana. She also claimed she was injured during the Battle of Mentana as she fought for the great Italian general Giuseppe Garibaldi.

 

Journey to Tibet

In 1868, Blavatsky said she received a message from Master Morya that she should go to Constantinople to meet with him, and this was when they journeyed to Tibet together. When they were in Tibet, Master Morya’s friend and colleague, Master Koot Hoomi, opened his house located near Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in Shigatse and hosted them.

Koot Hoomi (also known as Kuthumi or K.H.) is one of the Mahatmas or masters who inspired Blavatsky in establishing the Theosophical Society.

Koot Hoomi (also known as Kuthumi or K.H.) is one of the Mahatmas or masters who inspired Blavatsky to establish the Theosophical Society.

According to Blavatsky, both Morya and Koot Hoomi were Kashmiris of Punjabi descent. It is said that Koot Hoomi taught students of the Gelug tradition of Tibetan Buddhism in his house, but it is not clear exactly what he taught them. Koot Hoomi was fluent in both English and French and, like his friend Morya, he was also a vegetarian.

Blavatsky claimed that during her time in Tibet, she learned the ancient language of Senzar and translated several ancient scriptures from the monastery. She was not allowed to enter the monastery, so it would be logical to assume that she did the translations in Koot Hoomi’s house. She also mentioned that during this time, Master Morya and Master Koot Hoomi guided and helped her develop her psychic abilities and taught her how to control them.

The psychic abilities that Blavatsky developed were clairvoyance, clairaudience, telepathy, de-materialisation and re-materialisation of physical objects, the ability to control another person’s consciousness, and to project one’s astral body, giving the illusion of being in two places simultaneously. Blavatsky also claimed she had to engage in a spiritual retreat from late 1868 to late 1870, while she was in Tibet. Although Blavatsky did not write about her visit to Lhasa, this was later mentioned by various sources, one of them an account by her sister.

According to biographers, Blavatsky had been to Tashilunpo monastery, near Shigatse. There are reports saying during Blavatsky’s years of studying in Tashilunpo would have resulted in her meeting the 8th Panchen Lama Tenpai Wangchuk and getting to know him well. This information can be found in the book called "The Voice of the Silence", published by the Chinese society for Buddhism study at Peking, at the request of the 9th Panchen Lama in 1927

According to biographers, Blavatsky visited Tashi Lhunpo Monastery near Shigatse. Some reports state that Blavatsky’s years in Tashi Lhunpo would have resulted in her meeting the 8th Panchen Lama Tenpai Wangchuk and getting to know him well. This information can be found in the book called “The Voice of the Silence”, published by the Chinese Society for Buddhism Study at Peking, at the request of the 9th Panchen Lama in 1927

Many critics and biographers doubted Blavatsky’s claims regarding her travels, particularly her expedition to Tibet. However, there are also those who believed it was possible, especially as traders and pilgrims from neighbouring lands were known to have visited the country. Some biographers suggest Blavatsky could have entered Tibet since she was accompanied by Morya and could have disguised herself as an Asian. There is also an eyewitness account of seeing her in Shigatse. Furthermore, the renowned scholar D.T. Suzuki mentioned Blavatsky possessed advanced knowledge of Mahayana Buddhist subjects, which seems consistent with her claims of studying in a Tibetan monastery during her travels.

 

Establishing Theosophy

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Blavatsky travelled to Tibet to prove to the world that the esoteric phenomena enacted by Spiritualists were real, and she defended this concept fiercely, especially against scientific materialists who accused her of being a fraud. However, she was unbiased and pointed out that the entities some of the mediums were contacting might not be the spirits of the dead, as was often claimed by Spiritualists. These entities could have been mischievous elementals or “shells” left behind by the deceased.

Séances were popular at one time and Blavatsky at one time took part in these Séance but she soon realise that the answers provided by these spirits were not accurate and some were actually mischievous elementals or “shells” left behind by the dead.

Séances were popular at the time and Blavatsky participated in these. However, she soon realised that the answers provided by these spirits were not accurate and some were actually mischievous elementals or “shells” left behind by the deceased.

Next, she proceeded to Greece via the Suez Canal where she met another Master – Master Hilarion, who is considered a saint in the I AM movement. In July 1871, Blavatsky boarded the SS Eumonia to Egypt, but the ship tragically exploded en route. There were only 16 survivors and Blavatsky was one of them. When she arrived in Cairo, she met with Paulos Metamon. She also established société spirite with the help of a lady named Emma Cutting. The society advocated Spiritism, a form of Spiritualism originated by Allan Kardec. Kardec acknowledged the belief of reincarnation, which was a huge contrast from the beliefs of mainstream Spiritualists. However, after just two weeks, Blavatsky discovered that many mediums the society employed were frauds and decided to shut it down.

While in Cairo, Blavatsky also met the renowned French scholar and Egyptologist Sir Gaston Maspero and another one of her Masters, Serapis Bey, the 13th member of the Council of Adepts of the Ascension Temple, also known as Serapis Soleil (Serapis of the Sun).

After Egypt, Blavatsky went on to Syria, Palestine and Lebanon and became acquainted with members of the Druze religion. During these interesting travels, she met and became friends with writer and traveller Lidia Pashkova. Pashkova later provided independent confirmation regarding Blavatsky’s travels during this period.

Blavatsky returned to visit her family in Odessa in July 1872 before following Morya’s instructions to go to America. She arrived in New York in July 1873, and stayed in a women’s housing co-operative on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. She earned a small wage from odd jobs, such as sewing and designing advertising cards. Along the way, she attracted the attention of a journalist named Anna Ballard, who interviewed her for The Sun, a New York newspaper. In the interview, Blavatsky claimed to have travelled to the mysterious Tibet, the first written source of her travels to the Land of Snows.

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By the age of 42, Blavatsky possessed unusual spiritual and occult powers. It was believed she was the most suitable instrument for the work the great Masters had planned and the best person to present it to the world. This message was “The accumulated Wisdom of the ages, tested and verified by generations of Seers…“, a belief that the main Truth was all religions, great and small, are like the many branches that stem from the parent tree. Blavatsky was given the task by the Masters to challenge the deep-rooted beliefs and dogmas of Christian Theology and the materialistic view of science during her time. In Blavatsky’s own words,

“I was sent to prove the phenomena and their reality, and to show the fallacy of the spiritualistic theory of spirits.”

Not long after Blavatsky arrived in New York, she received news that her father had passed away, leaving her a substantial inheritance that allowed her to move from poor living conditions into a luxurious hotel.

In December 1874, Blavatsky met Mikheil Betaneli, a Georgian who had become infatuated with her. He persisted in pursuing her hand in marriage and in the end, Blavatsky conceded. However, since Blavatsky had not divorced her husband from her first marriage, this was considered bigamy. Nevertheless, Blavatsky would not consummate the marriage with Betaneli, which led him to file for a divorce.

 

Establishing the Theosophical Society

Helena Blavatsky and Henry Olcott (1888) were the founders of the Theosophical Society

Helena Blavatsky and Henry Olcott were the founders of the Theosophical Society

Blavatsky was fascinated by stories of William and Horatio Eddy, also known as the Eddy brothers, two American mediums from Chittenden, Vermont. The brothers claimed to levitate and manifest psychic phenomena. Intrigued, Blavatsky visited Chittenden in October 1874, where she met the renowned journalist Henry Steel Olcott, who was the investigating reporter on the Eddys’ claims for the New York Daily Graphic newspaper.

Olcott said he was impressed with Blavatsky’s ability to manifest psychic powers, which made him write an article on her for the paper. They quickly became close friends and they even had nicknames for one another, “Jack” for Blavatsky and “Maloney” for Olcott. He promoted her, generating more attention to her claims, and persuaded the editor of the Daily Graphic to publish an interview with Blavatsky. He also talked about Blavatsky in his book, Spiritualism, People from the Other World (1875).

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Blavatsky gave instructions to Olcott based on her own beliefs, and she also encouraged him to become vegetarian, teetotal and celibate. Sometime in January 1875, they visited the mediums Nelson and Jennie Owen, who were Spiritualists based in Philadelphia. The Owens asked to be tested by Olcott to prove they were not frauds and that the phenomena they produced were real. Olcott believed them but Blavatsky spoke up to expose them, saying some of their phenomena were fake, and failed to manifest as they claimed.

Eager to find ways and ideas to promote their beliefs, Blavatsky and Olcott published a circular letter in The Spiritual Scientist, Eldridge Gerry Brown’s Boston-based Spiritualist publication, and called themselves “Brotherhood of Luxor“, which could have been inspired by the Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor. They lived together in rented apartments in New York, presumably supported and funded by Olcott who continued his work as a lawyer. Their last apartment was called Lamasery, which means a monastery of lamas. Blavatsky and Olcott also founded the Miracle Club, supposedly inspired by the Masters, in which they facilitated many lectures on esoteric subjects. From this Club, they connected with an Irish Spiritualist named William Quan Judge, who shared similar interests.

In 1875, from the Miracle Club gatherings, the Theosophical Society was born with Olcott as the Chairman, Judge as the secretary, and Helena Blavatsky as the secretary, but everyone knows that Blavatsky was actual leader and driving force behind the society.

The Theosophical Society was born in 1875 with Olcott as the Chairman, Judge as the secretary, and Blavatsky as another secretary. However, everyone knew that Blavatsky was the actual leader and driving force behind the society.

On 7th September 1875, at a Miracle Club meeting, Blavatsky, Olcott, and Judge decided to create an esoteric organisation, and Charles Sotheran suggested that it be named the ‘Theosophical Society‘. The word ‘theosophy’ derives from the Greek word ‘theos’ which means “god(s)” and ‘sophia’, meaning “wisdom”; therefore, theosophy means “god-wisdom” or “divine wisdom”. Blavatsky insisted that Theosophy was not a religion and would clarify this many times over the course of her life.

The Logo of the Theosophical Society

The Logo of the Theosophical Society

The Theosophical Society was officially formed on 17th November 1875. Colonel Henry Steel Olcott was the chairman, William Quan Judge was the secretary, and Helena Petrovna Blavatsky was another secretary. However, there is no doubt that Blavatsky was the principal theoretician and leader of the group. The early members consisted of many prominent spiritualists such as Emma Hardinge Britten, C.C. Massey, Signor Bruzzesi, and William L. Alden who were, in their own right, successful members of the society.

The main objective of the Society was initially a general statement:

“…to collect and diffuse a knowledge of the laws which govern the Universe.”

However, the founders made several revisions to express their goals more accurately, and today they are the following:

  1. To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or colour.
  2. To encourage the study of Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and Science.
  3. To investigate unexplained laws of Nature and the powers latent in man.
This is the commemorative plaque of Theosophical Society in Adyar, India.

This is the commemorative plaque of the founding members of the Theosophical Society in Adyar, India.

 

Isis Unveiled

In the summer of 1875, Blavatsky wrote Isis Unveiled, a book that outlined her Theosophical worldview, from the home of Hiram Corson, a Professor of English Literature at Cornell University, Ithaca. In the course of her work, she became aware of a second consciousness, which she called “the lodger who is in me” and claimed that it inspired most of her writing.

According to Olcott, Blavatsky quoted from many religious texts and scriptures that she did not have access to in Isis Unveiled. Furthermore, the topics Blavatsky wrote about are still unanswerable over a century after her passing. Thus, Isis Unveiled was an original fusion that connected contrasting ideas and concepts not brought up before in Western literature. Blavatsky’s concept was about all world religions stemming from one “Ancient Wisdom” which she connected with the Western esoteric traditions of Hermeticism and Neoplatonism, openly disagreeing with Darwinian evolution theory that mainly focused on the physical world while ignoring the spiritual realm.

Isis Unveil was Helena Blavatsky’s first book and it was huge success, selling out about 1000 books in a week

Isis Unveiled was Helena Blavatsky’s first book and it was a huge success, selling 1,000 copies in a week.

Edited by Alexander Wilder, Professor of Philosophy, and published in two volumes by J.W. Bouton in 1877, the book encountered negative criticism and bad press reviews; some even said that she had quoted around 100 books but gave no credit or acknowledgement. Yet, despite all the negative reviews, Isis Unveiled still became a huge success, selling 1,000 copies in a week. It was such a success that the publisher asked for a sequel, but Blavatsky stayed true to her mission and rejected the offer.

However, while the world witnessed the great success of Isis Unveiled, it was not the same with the Society, which became quiet and inactive towards the autumn of 1876. This occurred although new lodges were being set up all around the United States and in London, and even though new prominent members like Thomas Edison and Abner Doubleday had joined the Society. Not long after her book’s success, Blavatsky became a U.S. citizen in July 1878.

 

Connections with India

Helena Blavatsky and Hindu Theosophists in India, around 1884

Helena Blavatsky and Hindu Theosophists in India around 1884

The Theosophical Society connected with a Hindu reform movement called the Arya Samaj, founded by Swami Dayananda Saraswati, as members believed these two organisations shared a common spiritual worldview. Shortly thereafter, Blavatsky became unhappy living in the U.S and decided to move to India. Her good friend Olcott agreed to join her in this relocation — they auctioned off many of their possessions in preparation for the move. Olcott also secured himself a position as a U.S. trade representative to the country. They arrived in Bombay in February 1879 and were warmly greeted with celebrations, organised by Hurrychund Chintamon, an Arya Samaj member.

Blavatsky preferred associating with Indians than with the governing British elite, and kept a 15-year-old Gujarati boy, named Vallah “Babula” Bulla, as her personal attendant. Many educated Indians were impressed when they discovered that Theosophists advocated and supported Indian religions, especially during that period of colonialism, British imperialism and on-going missionary efforts to convert them to Christianity. Hence, it was no surprise that her activities were closely monitored by the British Intelligence Service as they were concerned she could be a Russian spy.

Bombay, 1881 - Standing behind Olcott (seated in the middle) is Blavatsky and Damodar Mavalankar (seated to Olcott’s left)

Bombay, 1881 – Standing behind Olcott (seated in the middle) is Blavatsky and Damodar Mavalankar (seated to Olcott’s left)

Neither Christian missionaries nor the British government were happy with the spreading of Theosophy. India’s English-language press was also critical towards the Society. However, its popularity continued to grow, with many branches mushrooming all over India. Later, Blavatsky moved into a comfortable bungalow in the elite estate of a Bombay suburb called Breach Candy. This place was more easily accessible, especially for her Western guests. Olcott also established the Buddhist Education Fund to counter the spread of Christianity in Ceylon. His objective was to create awareness, to inspire, and to encourage locals to take pride and interest in Buddhism. Initially, Blavatsky was opposed to this, saying the Masters would not approve, but Olcott went ahead and it proved to be a great success. This made Blavatsky change her mind.

The Theosophist, a monthly magazine started by Blavatsky and Olcott received huge readership

The Theosophist, the monthly magazine started by Blavatsky and Olcott, gained a huge readership

In July 1879, Blavatsky and Olcott began working on The Theosophist, a monthly magazine, and released the first issue in October of the same year. The magazine quickly gained a huge readership and its management underwent rapid change — a Theosophist, Damodar K. Mavalankar, soon took the helm. He introduced the idea that the Masters should be referred to as Mahatmas which means ‘Great Soul’ in Sanskrit.

In December, Buddhist monks invited Blavatsky and Olcott to Ceylon. During this time, Blavatsky and Olcott officially became Buddhists, and they are said to be the first people from America to do so. They took the Five Precepts in May 1880, in a ceremony at Ramayana Nikayana. As they toured the island, they were greeted with crowds fascinated to see foreigners accepting Buddhism, instead of trying to convert them to Christianity. Their message was a great boost to the self-esteem of the Sinhalese people, and with that, they were cordially invited to visit Kandy to pay homage to the Buddha’s tooth relic.

Buddhists monks with Olcott in Colombo (1883)

Buddhist monks with Olcott in Colombo, 1883

Alfred Percy Sinnett invited Blavatsky to spend time with him, during which she performed the phenomena of materialising objects, stunning his guests in the process. In one incident, she made a cup and a saucer appear from beneath the soil while they were out having a picnic. Enthralled, Sinnet wanted to contact the Masters — in his eagerness, he kept persuading Blavatsky to help him facilitate this communication, which resulted in 1,400 pages of letters supposedly authored by Morya and Koot Hoomi, known as the Mahatma Letters. The teachings in these letters were summarised by Sinnett and published in a book titled Esoteric Buddhism (1883). However, Buddhist authors such as Max Müller openly emphasised that the contents of the book were not Buddhist in nature. Blavatsky herself was also not too pleased and disliked the title, which she thought was misleading. Since its publication, the book has sparked many debates on who the author actually was; some have even said it was written by Blavatsky herself.

Having been diagnosed with Bright’s disease, Blavatsky took up an offer from the Society in Madras, hoping the weather there would be more favourable to her condition. Later, in November 1882, an estate in Adyar was purchased by the Society. It became the new headquarters and a few rooms were reserved for Blavatsky, who moved there in December. Still active, Blavatsky toured the subcontinent and also claimed that she visited her teacher’s ashram in Sikkim and Tibet for a few days around this time.

Headquarters of Theosophy Society in Adyar, Madras, 1887

The headquarters of the Theosophical Society in Adyar, Madras, 1887

Blavatsky’s health further deteriorated and she agreed to return to Britain with Olcott, who had a case on Ceylonese Buddhism to debate as well as issues regarding the Society’s London Lodge to resolve. While in London, Blavatsky connected with the Society for Psychical Research (SPR) and complied with their request to study her psychic abilities. However, she was not very impressed with them and would mockingly call them “Spookical Research Society”.

A photograph taken in London in 1888 with Blavatsky (front left) and her sister Vera Petrovna de Zhelihovsky. Standing behind them are Vera (Blavatsky's niece) with her husband Charles Johnston as well as Henry S. Olcott.

A photograph taken in London in 1888 with Blavatsky (front left) and her sister Vera Petrovna de Zhelihovsky. Standing behind them are Vera (Blavatsky’s niece) with her husband Charles Johnston as well as Henry S. Olcott.

While Blavatsky was in Europe, a conflict with Emma and Alexis Coulomb, known as the Coulomb Affair, arose at the Adyar headquarters. Emma Coulomb was accused of misappropriating funds for her own purposes. The Society’s Board of Control asked her to leave but she and her husband refused. They blackmailed the Society by producing letters they claimed were written by Blavatsky, supposedly proving that her paranormal abilities were a sham. The Society did not buy it, refused to pay, and barred them from the Society’s premises. The Coulombs then turned to the Christian College Magazine based in Madras, who published the letters and exposed Blavatsky as a fraud. The resulting scandal created international attention and the news was picked up by The Times, a London-based newspaper.

In response, Blavatsky with Theosophist Charles Webster Leadbeater went to Cairo in November 1884 in search of information on Emma Coulomb. There, they discovered the ugly truth — that Emma was a suspected extortionist and criminal. Fortunately, although the Society suffered great ‘internal’ damage from this scandal, it did not affect the Society’s or Blavatsky’s popularity, especially in India.

Today the Theosophical Society, located along the Adyar River is one of the popular attractions in the city of Chennai. The campus consists of a Hindu Temple, Jain Temple, a Church and a Buddhist Temple. The library has a rich collection of sacred book and manuscripts on all major faiths. The campus of Theosophical Society is also well known for its huge 200-year-old Banyan tree which can provide shelter to 3000 people all at once.

Today, the Theosophical Society, located along the Adyar River, is one of the popular attractions in the city of Chennai. The campus consists of a Hindu temple, a Jain temple, a Christian church and a Buddhist temple. The library has a rich collection of sacred books and manuscripts on all major faiths. The campus of the Theosophical Society is also well known for its huge 200-year-old Banyan tree.

 

The Final Years

Madame Blavatsky in London (1887)

Madame Blavatsky in London, 1887

1885 was an eventful year. Having returned to Europe due to deteriorating health, Blavatsky resumed writing her book The Secret Doctrine, living off a pension provided by the Theosophical Society in Naples, Italy.

She moved to Würzburg, Bavaria, where she was visited by her good friend, Countess Constance Wachtmeister, a Swedish Theosophist who “loyally and lovingly helped in the great work”. But then disaster struck — Richard Hodgson from the Society for Psychical Research (SPR) reported that Blavatsky and her alleged spiritual phenomena were fake and that she was a Russian spy.

This did not sit well with members of the Society. Blavatsky was denounced by some followers while others quit the organisation in the fallout. For the sake of the Society, Olcott stopped Blavatsky from taking legal action against her accusers. At the same time, many Theosophists criticised Hodgson and stated that his methodologies were only set out to disprove and attack Blavatsky. However, it was only in 1886 that the SPR accepted this and retracted the findings of the report.

Despite the tension created by Hodgson’s report, the growth of the Theosophical Society was unstoppable and towards the end of Blavatsky’s life, there were 121 lodges with charters around the world, mostly located in India, Burma and Ceylon. Although she had to move around in a wheelchair, she started a small ink-producing business and moved to Belgium. At this time, she received complaints from dissatisfied members of the London Lodge who claimed Sinnett neglected the propagation of Theosophy in exchange for gathering support from the upper-class.

A controversial magazine was published by Blavatsky to discuss philosophical ideas

Blavatsky published ‘Lucifer’, a controversial magazine, to discuss philosophical ideas

In 1887, ‘Lucifer’, a controversial magazine, was born and Blavatsky directed its focus on the discussion of philosophical ideas. In 1888, Blavatsky started a special section of the Society for which admittance was only available to those who passed her tests. She nurtured and called them the “True Theosophists” — members of the Esoteric Section of the Theosophical Society who would focus on the system’s philosophy. Blavatsky moved to London, staying with Theosophist Mabel Collins in Upper Norwood, and later in Holland Park with Bertram Keightley and his nephew Archibald Keightley, where she held lodge meetings on Thursday nights, establishing the Blavatsky Lodge to rival Sinnett’s.

Her work, The Secret Doctrine was published by her own Theosophical Publishing Company in two volumes, months apart. She claimed it was a commentary on the Book of Dzyan, which Buddhologist David Reigle appeared to agree with, stating it was part of the Tantra section of the Tibetan Buddhist canon. Many Buddhist scholars refuted Reigle’s claim and denied the existence of the Book of Dzyan, saying it was mere fiction, a creation of Blavatsky’s in which she promoted her concept of how the universe, planets and humans came about.

In 1889, she received a visit from Mohandas Gandhi, who became an associate member of the lodge two years later, declaring the close connection between Theosophy and Hinduism. Blavatsky also spoke about the soul and the afterlife — Annie Besant, a social reformer who reviewed books for the Pall Mall Gazette, was so impressed that she joined the Theosophists. Soon, Blavatsky moved into Besant’s large home at 19 Avenue Road in St. John’s Wood, which became the new European headquarters of the Theosophical Society.

Blavatsky writing at her desk

Blavatsky writing at her desk

Blavatsky authored many books there such as The Key to Theosophy, which was a book of questions and answers. The Voice of Silence was a devotional text based on The Book of the Golden Precepts, which Blavatsky claimed was based on another ancient text.

For the rest of Blavatsky’s living years, she had to bear with accusations of being a fraud. In 1890, there was even an article published in a U.S. newspaper, The Sun, with information from Elliott Coues, an ex-member of the Society. The paper later retracted their accusations when Blavatsky sued them for libel.

In 1892, Blavatsky contracted the influenza virus due to the epidemic in Britain and she passed away on 8th May 1891 in the Society’s European headquarters. The date was declared “White Lotus Day” by Theosophists.

London 1890, Blavatsky is seen here with theosophist James Pryse (left) and G.R.S. Mead

London 1890: Blavatsky is seen here with Theosophist James Pryse (left) and G.R.S. Mead

 

Theosophical Belief and Movement

A painting of Blavatsky by the famous artist Nicholas Roerich

A painting of Blavatsky by the famous artist Nicholas Roerich. Click to enlarge.

Helena Blavatsky was responsible for establishing the doctrinal basis of the Theosophical Society and for the emergence of the Theosophical movement. Theosophy dismissed the Christian idea of a “God” which Blavatsky described to be “a bundle of contradictions and a logical impossibility”. Blavatsky believed and emphasised that an “ancient wisdom religion” existed and this wisdom was also known to many great philosophers of the world such as Plato, the Hindu sages and other wise men of the past. She believed all the existing world religions could trace their sources to this ancient wisdom.

Blavatsky also claimed she obtained her Theosophical teachings from various adepts around the world. In addition, she believed the Theosophical movement marked the revival and spreading of this ancient wisdom-religion and that it would eventually eclipse all existing world religions. A pantheist who promoted the idea of mystical, monotheistic and immanentist cosmology, Blavatsky believed in the:

“…universal Divine Principle, the root of All, from which all proceeds, and within which all shall be absorbed at the end of the great cycle of being.”

Blavatsky has also said that each particle in the universe is infused with a spark of the divine:

“Lower Orders emanated from higher ones, before becoming increasingly dense and being absorbed back into the Divine Principle. This cosmology exhibited commonalities with the scientific discoveries of geology and biological evolution, both of which had been revealed by scientific enquiry during the 19th century.”

Bevir, Mark (1994). “The West Turns Eastward: Madame Blavatsky and the Transformation of the Occult Tradition”. Journal of the American Academy of Religion.

In The Secret Doctrine, Blavatsky stated that absolute nothingness existed at the beginning of time, and this essence was separated into Seven Rays, which then created the universe using an energy, called Fohat. The earth underwent seven rounds of creation, where different living beings were created in each round. She also advocated the idea of seven root races:

  1. The first root race lived on a continent named “Imperishable Sacred Land” and was created from pure spirit.
  2. The second root race lived in the land near the North Pole and is known as the Hyperboreans. This race was also created from pure spirit.
  3. The third root race lived on the continent of Lemuria, the present-day Rapa-Nui and Australia.
  4. The fourth root race lived on Atlantis and consisted of higher beings, who descended to the planet. They had psychic powers, physical bodies, and advanced technology.
  5. The fifth root race were the Aryans, who existed around the world when she wrote her book The Secret Doctrine.
  6. The sixth root race would replace the fifth, which will be marked by Maitreya’s arrival.
  7. The seventh root race would eventually replace the sixth root race.

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In addition, Blavatsky believed humans consisted of three separate parts: the physical body, the astral fluid body, and a divine spark.

Although Blavatsky was initially sceptical of the concept of reincarnation as stated in her book Isis Unveiled, she later changed her mind. This change was reflected in her book, The Secret Doctrine, where she stated karma governed the law of incarnation, and the final purpose of humanity is the soul’s emancipation from the cycle of death and rebirth.

When she lived in New York City, Blavatsky claimed herself to be a Buddhist, although her form of Buddhism was unique. She believed the Buddha:

“…had sought to return to the teachings of the Vedas, and that Buddhism therefore represented a more accurate survival of ancient Brahmanism than modern Hinduism.”

Bevir, Mark (1994). “The West Turns Eastward: Madame Blavatsky and the Transformation of the Occult Tradition”. Journal of the American Academy of Religion.

An American journalist, co-founder and the first president of the Theosophical Society, Colonel Henry Steel Olcott, helped in the shape and design of the Buddhist flag. He felt that its long streaming shape was somewhat inconvenient and not practical to be used, hence modified the size and shape to be like national flags.

Colonel Henry Steel Olcott helped to shape the design of the Buddhist flag. He felt that a long streaming shape was somewhat inconvenient and impractical, hence he modified its size and shape to be similar to national flags.

The Theosophical movement owed its popularity to the charismatic Blavatsky’s leadership and perseverance. Her belief sparked interest in spiritualism and her philosophy appealed to women because it provided them the opportunity to take on spiritual leadership that was equal to men.

Theosophical teachings borrow many concepts and beliefs from Buddhism and, as a result of this, Helena Blavatsky and Henry Olcott were amongst the pioneering Westerners who became Buddhist during that time.

Henry Steel Olcott even helped designed the Buddhist flag that is still in use today. In fact, Tibetan Buddhism became popular in the West because of great Theosophist authors like Evans-Wentz and Alexandra David-Neel.

Blavatsky would often compare Theosophy to Mahayana Buddhism and in her book, The Key to Theosophy she wrote,

“But the schools of the Northern Buddhist Church … teach all that is now called Theosophical doctrines, because they form part of the knowledge of the initiates…”

In 1891, by the time of Blavatsky’s passing, the Theosophical community had grown to 100,000 and her writings had been published in various Asian and European languages.

The Theosophical Society in America today is located in Wheaton, Illinois on a beautiful 42 acre campus. The grounds are open to the public and it comprises of the headquarters building, where classes, lectures, and workshops are being held. There is also a huge library and the Quest Bookshop. On the campus is also a beautiful pond, tree groves, gardens, and a labyrinth.

The Theosophical Society in America today is located in Wheaton, Illinois on a beautiful 42-acre campus. The grounds are open to the public and it comprises of the headquarter building, where classes, lectures, and workshops are held. There is also a huge library and the Quest Bookshop. Also on campus are tree groves, gardens, a beautiful pond and a labyrinth.

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VIDEO: A Documentary on Madame Helena Blavatsky, founder of the Theosophical Society and scholar of ancient wisdom and literature

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

 

Selected Books by Helena Blavatsky

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Isis Unveiled (1877). Click on image to download the PDF version.

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The Secret Doctrine (1888). Click on image to download the PDF version.

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The Key to Theosophy (1889). Click on image to download the PDF version.

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The Voice of Silence (1889). Click on image to download the PDF version.

The texts above were sourced from legitimate book-hosting services offering these texts for free download. They are made available here for purely educational, non-commercial purposes.

 

Selected Quotes

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Sources:

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helena_Blavatsky
  • http://blavatskyarchives.com/longseal.htm
  • https://www.britannica.com/biography/Helena-Blavatsky
  • https://tssydney.org
  • http://fromparent2child.blogspot.my/2013/11/founder-of-novgorod-russias-geneology.html
  • http://www.theosophycardiff.care4free.net/Blavatsky%20Chronology.htm
  • http://www.katinkahesselink.net/blavatsky/articles/v1/outline_prior_public.htm
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhist_flag
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhism_and_Theosophy

 

For more interesting information:

 

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The day Joy met His Eminence the 25th Tsem Rinpoche changed her life forever. Joining Kechara full time in 2004 as an administrator, Joy's current portfolio includes painting, restoring and beautifying Buddha statues. As a writer in Kechara, Joy is also one of the blog chat moderators on tsemrinpoche.com.

An aspiring nun (sangha-to-be), Joy looks forward to promote the sacred lineage of Je Tsongkhapa through modern platforms and social media.
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9 Responses to Madame Blavatsky: Mother of Modern Spirituality

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  1. Andrew on Nov 19, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    tashi delek

  2. Andrew on Nov 19, 2018 at 7:26 pm

    wow and then after this came jiddhu Krishnamurti. he dismantled the theosophical society and left a 30 million dollar fund in the krishna merti fund. jhidus message was clear. complete the investigation. do it now

  3. Joy Kam on Jul 26, 2018 at 5:21 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

    • Andrew on Nov 19, 2018 at 7:29 pm

      very cool. how is paris and Titula going?

  4. wan wai meng on Jun 2, 2018 at 2:51 am

    Madame Blavatsky has through her investigation and travels has exposed Buddhism to people in the West. Through interacting with Madame Blavatsky and her organization the West understands much more about Buddhism and what it stands for.

    I think her work allowed her to help women also to explore spiritual paths and careers. She was so dogged, she found a way to get into Tibet despite all the problems and difficulties of entering into Tibet. Many have thought of her as a spy and a fake, yet she persevered.

    • wan wai meng on Jun 2, 2018 at 12:58 pm

      Madame Blavatsky, was certainly an unconventional figure of her time, unconventional as a woman and unconventional also a a truth seekers of her time. She was probably one of the first few spiritual travellers on top of that she also protected traditional spiritual beliefs from the encroachment Christian missionaries work at Sri Lanka and India.

  5. Anne Ong on Apr 26, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    Very interesting story about Madame Blavatsky: Mother of Modern Spirituality “From a young age, she sensed that she had a special mission that would somehow lead her towards dedicating her life to the service of others. She also believed she was guided and protected by some higher power to fulfil this purpose.” .Thank you Rinpoche and Joy for such an inspiring story. ???

  6. Samfoonheei on Apr 13, 2018 at 11:17 am

    Helena Petrovna Blavatsky was a Russian occultist, philosopher, and author who co-founded the Theosophical Society. Although she died more than a century ago, her name still turns up in serious discussions about “ancient wisdom,”. She has travelled extensively throughout Asia and Europe as she claimed. Somehow she was the first to introduce knowledge of eastern religions to the West including the ideas of karma and reincarnation. She even revealed that all major religions are acquired from one original religious philosophy. As claimed she has possessed extraordinary psychic powers. She has an interesting life story of up and down yet she has left a legacy with many written articles and ideas been promoted by several foundations and websites till today. That her esoteric spiritual knowledge is consistent with new science which is considered to be the first instance. She was named Mother of Modern spirituality.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Joy Kam for this interesting sharing.

  7. Pastor Han Nee on Apr 11, 2018 at 5:05 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche and Joy for this interesting article on Madame Blavatsky – Mother of Modern Spirituality.

    The following are some of the qualities and achievements of Madam Blavatsky that impress me deeply. One of the world’s most extraordinary spiritualists, she was the creator and popularizer of many of the ideas and terms which shaped the New Age Movement. She founded the Theosophical Society and through it, engendered a new world view of spirituality and philosophy. It also became the avenue via which the Eastern religions ,like Buddhism and Hinduism, were introduced to the West.She was fearless in confronting conventional beliefs and challenged them , such as the belief in One God.

    She visited Tibet,in her travels around the world to absorb spirituality from diverse viewpoints. The visit to Tibet was the result of advice by a group of adepts, the “Masters of the Ancient Wisdom”.

    She sums up her path of spirituality, which is quite akin to the Buddhist path,in the definition of the Holy Science as follows:
    The spiritual path is an upward movement, where we pass through stages where we mistake “shadows for realities”. “The upward progress of the Ego is a series of progressive awakenings”. However, only when we have reached “the absolute consciousness and blended our own with it, shall we be free from the delusions produced by Mayo (illusion)”.

    In her concept of modern spirituality which has influenced spiritual thinking of this age, she has included occultism and the esoteric. She was also a spirit medium. Such is the extraordinary woman whom the world credits to have influenced greatly and helped to shape spirituality in the 21st century!

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    His writing style is clear and direct, added with his personal experiences, thoughts and direct realizations at that point of time. I am fond of reading those past masters’ writings as opposed to the modern ones.
    John Blofeld spiritual journey and his affinity so strong in Buddhism are really showed that he had a very strong connection to Buddhism in his previous life.Thank you very much for sharing this article.
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    Inspirational quotes and motivational quotes have the power to get us thinking and working on it. Just by reading and understand help and inspired us too. Thank you Tsem Rinpoche for sharing which I truly love to read and have a thought on it.

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    Thursday, Aug 6. 2020 01:13 AM
    Meditation is suitable for everyone from kids to the elderly or those in their prime and in pursuit of all the wealth (material and spiritual) life has to offer. It is an exciting journey of discovery that is extremely rewarding.
    Being in nature have so much to offer to someone who wants to be engaged in meditation.Thank you very much for the good article.
  • sarassitham
    Wednesday, Aug 5. 2020 04:32 PM
    Thank you for wonderful information sharing on healing with herbs. The effect of plant based herbs incense has great benefits and much more safer. It’s amazing to discover
    the natural qualities keeps us healthier and prevent us from various illness.

    I loved to have sandalwood for my prayer offering it’s so much soothing and keeps the environment calms and relax.


    https://bit.ly/2PnhiHD
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Aug 5. 2020 03:48 PM
    Beautiful pictures taken during H.E. Kyabje Tsem Rinpoche’s Parinirvana Ceremony . I am fortunate to be there , volunteering , joining most of all the following pujas. It once a life time able to witness a Tibetan Parinirvana Ceremony with a heavy heart .
    Thank you writer teams for this beautiful write up and great pictures shared. Looking at those pictures have me recalling the great moments at Kechara Forest Retreat at that very moment. It paints a thousand words.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/gallery/album-kyabje-tsem-rinpoches-parinirvana-ceremony.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Aug 5. 2020 03:44 PM
    Interesting as Tsem Rinpoche called it as BIZARRE beings. Well I have not heard of some the names such as chupacabra, Ebu Gogo, Springheel Jack and so forth. Spring-heeled Jack is an entity in English folklore of the Victorian era. Wow ….sound interesting. For decades, Spring-heeled Jack name was equated with the bogeyman. Its as a means of scaring people as some said he was demon who would leap up unnaturally high. Another interesting bizarre beings is shadow people who is a shadowy spiritual beings long been a staple of folklore. Stories of these supernatural entities have spanned centuries and cultures. They are some of the most mysterious entities in the known universe. As reported those who saw the shadowy intruders were scare to death as if they had died in their sleep. The Beast of Bray Road is another scary creature of Elkhorn, Wisconsin. Its a hairy humanoid with canine features standing on two legs and can resemble a bear. All those cryptozoological creatures mentioned in this article were indeed real or just folklore. Whether they do exist in this century , no one be sure. But definitely they do decades ago as recorded. There are many unknown out in the universe.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this interesting sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/bizarre-cryptids.html
  • S.Prathap
    Wednesday, Aug 5. 2020 01:08 AM
    We should consider changing our diet and lifestyle to one that gives the minimum negative impact on our environment, we are responsible to give our future generation a better place to live.
    This article show the designers have seriously consider to make this easily available to more everywhere with affordable price; and make cities around the world greener, more self sustainable and the city people healthier.
  • sarassitham
    Tuesday, Aug 4. 2020 06:45 PM
    A beautiful explanation how to gain merits through devotion. In its purest form, religion can inspire people to serve the welfare of others. An inspiring article how to learn to transform a better living by our action and deeds.

    Thank you for your wonderful thoughts of sharing these powerful teaching on how to find the hidden truth of the golden path of life to be more meaningful with sincere faith.

    http://bitly.ws/9f5H
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 4. 2020 04:15 PM
    No words can describe of us losing our Lama and enlightened Guru, H.E. the 25th Tsem Rinpoche. I was deeply saddened to hear about the death of our Lama as just a moment ago last July , we had an audience and met our Lama , which indeed my very first time . Even though its just moment to me its like a long moment which I remembered each and every words of encouragement our Lama told me. Our Lama was such a kind, generous, compassionate gentle soul whom he would do anything to help improve our lives and had made a difference in my life and so many lives. Where lives pass, memories carry on forever. I will cherish the great memories I have with our Lama.
    Throughout Rinpoche’s life, his was a voice for the millions of people. The Parinirvana of H.E. Kyabje Tsem Rinpoche, the world has lost a great Lama, whose steadfast and unflinching determination played a key role in trying to secure the lifting of Dorje Shugden’s ban. Tsem Rinpoche was known for his great compassion, tremendous generosity and extraordinary thoughtfulness. Everything Tsem Rinpoche did was merely to benefit others. May Tsem Rinpoche have a swift reincarnation .
    We will always hold our Lama close in our thoughts.
    Thank you writers team for this wonderful sharing. … beautiful pictures paints a thousand words.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/the-parinirvana-of-kyabje-tsem-rinpoche.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Tuesday, Aug 4. 2020 04:13 PM
    Glenn Mullin is a world well known Buddhist author, translator, scholar, speaker, lecturer and teacher. He is the author of many books on Tibetan Buddhism, many of which have been translated into a dozen foreign languages. Many of these focus on the lives and works of the early Dalai Lamas. In one of his book A Sacred Legacy of Reincarnation of the Fourteen Dalai Lamas he mentioned that Dorje Shugden was a pervasive practice spreading among the Gelugpa tradition for hundred of years. Many highly attained lamas had been relying on Dorje Shugden and the practice been passed down to thousands in the Gelugpa world. It is not a minor practice after all and in fact Dorje Shugden is a major practice in the world as in history has been proved that the practice is beneficial. Religious freedom should be allow for one who choose what one would pray to. But due to the restriction by the Tibetan leadership , the practice been ban. Politics should not have interfere with religion. May the ban be over soon.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/glenn-mullin-on-tulku-drakpa-gyeltsen.html
  • S.Prathap
    Monday, Aug 3. 2020 12:49 PM
    There are immense benefits of making offerings to the Sangha, and a great opportunity for oneself to practice giving and generosity..Thank you very much for sharing this article that explains the benefits of making offerings to the sangha community.


    https://bit.ly/30lYluV
  • Lin Mun
    Friday, Jul 31. 2020 02:21 PM
    Thank you Pastor Niral for sharing this article. I do come across people would like to highlight or even fight which God or religion is greater or more powerful. What do they want to achieve or have in mind? Of course people would like to believe their God or religion is the best which is totally fine. However, it is not right when they impose their belief on others and start giving negative comments to change our perception when they know nothing about our belief. Ultimately whatever religion or God we believe in , we should be promoting peace, harmony and love. Arguing will not bring positive impact. Respect everyone’s choice.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/one-minute-story/whose-version-of-god-is-right
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Jul 30. 2020 02:28 PM
    The Mahabodhi Temple is a religious site in India which marks the spot where the Buddha first attained enlightenment. It’s one of the most sacred sites in all of Buddhism built around 260 BCE . Bodhgaya in Bihar is the heart and birthplace of Buddhism . The Mahabodhi Temple was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The peace of the Bodhgaya Temple welcomes all races and it has attracted hundred thousands of pilgrims yearly as well as architecture enthusiast. The main Mahabodhi Temple complex is home to the legendary Bodhi Tree and as well as the temple itself. Walking around following Buddha ‘s footsteps to discover several places of spiritual significance around the temple. Worth going and a must place for pilgrims.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/buddha-at-mahabodhi-temple-bodhgaya.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Jul 30. 2020 02:26 PM
    Precious teachings from Tilopa to Naropa, still trying to understand it . Simple in the verses, but there is a lot of meaning behind each and every words. I have been reading over and over again to understand more of Tilopa’s Mahamudra instruction to Naropa in twenty eight verses.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing these 28 verses with us.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/28-amazing-verses.html

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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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!

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The Unknown

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

Photos On The Go

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

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

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
1 years ago
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can\'t stop thinking of you and I can\'t forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
1 years ago
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can't stop thinking of you and I can't forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
1 years ago
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
1 years ago
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
1 years ago
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
1 years ago
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
1 years ago
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
1 years ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
1 years ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
1 years ago
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
DON\'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
1 years ago
DON'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
1 years ago
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
1 years ago
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
1 years ago
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
1 years ago
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
1 years ago
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
1 years ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
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  • Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
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    Our Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir speaks so well, logically and regarding our country’s collaboration with China for growth. It is refreshing to listen to Dr. Mahathir’s thoughts. He said our country can look to China for many more things such as technology and so on. Tsem Rinpoche
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  • Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
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    Join Tsem Rinpoche in prayer for H.H. Dalai Lama’s long life~ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYy7JcveikU&feature=youtu.be
  • These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    These people going on pilgrimage to a holy mountain and prostrating out of devotion and for pilgrimage in Tibet. Such determination for spiritual practice. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Beautiful new casing in Kechara for Vajra Yogini. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
    1 years ago
    Get ready to laugh real hard. This is Kechara’s version of “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane!” We have some real talents in this video clip.
  • Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
    1 years ago
    Recitation of Dorje Dermo‘s mantra or the Dharani of Glorious Vajra Claws. This powerful mantra is meant to destroy all obstacles that come in our way. Beneficial to play this mantra in our environments.
  • Beautiful
    1 years ago
    Beautiful
    Beautiful sacred Severed Head Vajra Yogini from Tsem Rinpoche's personal shrine.
  • My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    My little monster cute babies Dharma and Oser. Take a look and get a cute attack for the day! Tsem Rinpoche
  • Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Plse watch this short video and see how all sentient beings are capable of tenderness and love. We should never hurt animals nor should we eat them. Tsem Rinpoche
  • Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
    Cruelty of some people have no limits and it’s heartbreaking. Being kind cost nothing. Tsem Rinpoche
  • SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    2 yearss ago
    SUPER ADORABLE and must see
    Tsem Rinpoche's dog Oser girl enjoying her snack in her play pen.
  • Cute!
    2 yearss ago
    Cute!
    Oser girl loves the balcony so much. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTcoWpKJm2c
  • Uncle Wong
    2 yearss ago
    Uncle Wong
    We were told by Uncle Wong he is very faithful toward Dorje Shugden. Dorje Shugden has extended help to him on several occasions and now Uncle Wong comes daily to make incense offerings to Dorje Shugden. He is grateful towards the help he was given.
  • Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
    2 yearss ago
    Tsem Rinpoche’s Schnauzer Dharma boy fights Robot sphere from Arkonide!
  • Cute baby owl found and rescued
    2 yearss ago
    Cute baby owl found and rescued
    We rescued a lost baby owl in Kechara Forest Retreat.
  • Nice cups from Kechara!!
    2 yearss ago
    Nice cups from Kechara!!
    Dorje Shugden people's lives matter!
  • Enjoy a peaceful morning at Kechara Forest Retreat
    2 yearss 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).
  • This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    3 yearss ago
    This topic is so hot in many circles right now.
    This video is thought-provoking and very interesting. Watch! Thanks so much to our friends at LIVEKINDLY.
  • Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
    3 yearss ago
    Chiropractic CHANGES LIFE for teenager with acute PAIN & DEAD LEG.
  • BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
    3 yearss ago
    BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN NEW YORK STATE-AMAZING.
  • Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
    3 yearss ago
    Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the meat Industry with real action.
  • Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
    3 yearss ago
    Do psychic mediums have messages from beyond?
  • Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 yearss ago
    Lovely gift for my 52nd Birthday. Tsem Rinpoche
  • This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    3 yearss ago
    This 59-year-old chimpanzee was refusing food and ready to die until...
    she received “one last visit from an old friend” 💔💔
  • Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
    3 yearss ago
    Bigfoot sighted again and made it to the news.
  • Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
    3 yearss ago
    Casper is such a cute and adorable. I like him.
  • Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant  Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
    3 yearss ago
    Dorje Shugden Monastery Amarbayasgalant Mongolia's Ancient Hidden Gem
  • Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
    3 yearss ago
    Don't you love Hamburgers? See how 'delicious' it is here!
  • Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
    3 yearss ago
    Such a beautiful and powerful message from a person who knows the meaning of life. Tsem Rinpoche
  • What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    3 yearss ago
    What the meat industry figured out is that you don't need healthy animals to make a profit.
    Sick animals are more profitable... farms calculate how close to death they can keep animals without killing them. That's the business model. How quickly they can be made to grow, how tightly they can be packed, how much or how little can they eat, how sick they can get without dying... We live in a world in which it's conventional to treat an animal like a block of wood. ~ Jonathan Safran Foer
  • This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
    3 yearss ago
    This video went viral and it's a must watch!!
  • SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    3 yearss ago
    SEE HOW THIS ANIMAL SERIAL KILLER HAS NO ISSUE BLUDGEONING THIS DEFENSELESS BEING.
    This happens daily in slaughterhouse so you can get your pork and Bak ku teh. Stop eating meat.

ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

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

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CHAT PICTURES

Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 weeks ago
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
system
1 month ago
system
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
2 months ago
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
3 months ago
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
3 months ago
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wesak 2020
3 months ago
Wesak 2020
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
5 months ago
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
5 months ago
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
5 months ago
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Over 100 Kecharians & their loved ones spent the Sunday evening immersed in this obstacle pacifying puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Dakpa and Geshe Janchup Gyaltsen Lama inspecting the offering substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Rinpoche & Geshe Janchup making last minute checks before the commencement of the Jinsek or Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: H.E. Zawa Rinpoche & Geshe Janchup making last minute checks before the commencement of the Jinsek or Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The arrival of the Sangha conducting this sacred puja accompanied by Changtso Beng Kooi and Pastor Niral Patel - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The arrival of the Sangha conducting this sacred puja accompanied by Changtso Beng Kooi and Pastor Niral Patel - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The site of the Peaceful Fire Puja the calls upon the pacifying energies of Shize Shugden. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: The site of the Peaceful Fire Puja the calls upon the pacifying energies of Shize Shugden. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: A close-up of the ladle. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: A close-up of the ladle. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Substances such as sticks, melted butter, kusha grass, lentils and barley were traditionally offered during the prayers to create the causes for merits, long life and to pacify obstacles. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Substances such as sticks, melted butter, kusha grass, lentils and barley were traditionally offered during the prayers to create the causes for merits, long life and to pacify obstacles. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Beautifully handcrafted torma or food offering to the Buddha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Beautifully handcrafted torma or food offering to the Buddha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Some of the many offering items & substances used during this highly blessed Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Some of the many offering items & substances used during this highly blessed Fire Puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja in Kechara Forest Retreat: A special mandala at the base where the fire puja ritual was conducted. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
5 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja in Kechara Forest Retreat: A special mandala at the base where the fire puja ritual was conducted. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Kechara Earth Project (KEP) 8/3/2020
5 months ago
Kechara Earth Project (KEP) 8/3/2020
Dear Kecharians and friends, We are pleased to announce that as part of the preparations for H.E. Tsem Rinpoche's reliquary stupas and incarnation chapel, mantra rolling sessions have begun in Kechara Forest Retreat. We are calling for volunteers to join us in this holy activity. DATE Daily starting 5th March 2020 until further notice TIME (1) Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday - 10am to 10pm (2) Thursday & Sunday - 10am to 6pm VENUE Art Studio (Kechara Saraswati Arts) Kechara Forest Retreat If you're interested, kindly contact: Wong Yew Kien 012-3717896 or Karen Chong 012-7710289 We look forward to seeing you soon!
5 months ago
Dear Kecharians and friends, We are pleased to announce that as part of the preparations for H.E. Tsem Rinpoche's reliquary stupas and incarnation chapel, mantra rolling sessions have begun in Kechara Forest Retreat. We are calling for volunteers to join us in this holy activity. DATE Daily starting 5th March 2020 until further notice TIME (1) Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday - 10am to 10pm (2) Thursday & Sunday - 10am to 6pm VENUE Art Studio (Kechara Saraswati Arts) Kechara Forest Retreat If you're interested, kindly contact: Wong Yew Kien 012-3717896 or Karen Chong 012-7710289 We look forward to seeing you soon!
Join us for a Peaceful Fire Puja based on Dorje Shugden’s pacifying form. This blessed puja will be conducted at the future site of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche’s outdoor reliquary stupa to pacify obstacles and for the success of the project. EVENT DETAILS • Date: Sunday, 8 March 2020 • Time: 6.00pm – 8.30pm • Venue: Kechara Forest Retreat, Bentong Admission is free, all are welcome. ADDITIONAL BENEFITS FOR SPONSORS AND ATTENDEES • Healing from illness and disease • Overcoming obstacles • Purifying past negative deeds and negative karma • Calming the environment, natural disasters and calamities • Helping the deceased to take a good rebirth • Accumulation of merits for spiritual realisations and attainments
5 months ago
Join us for a Peaceful Fire Puja based on Dorje Shugden’s pacifying form. This blessed puja will be conducted at the future site of H.E. Tsem Rinpoche’s outdoor reliquary stupa to pacify obstacles and for the success of the project. EVENT DETAILS • Date: Sunday, 8 March 2020 • Time: 6.00pm – 8.30pm • Venue: Kechara Forest Retreat, Bentong Admission is free, all are welcome. ADDITIONAL BENEFITS FOR SPONSORS AND ATTENDEES • Healing from illness and disease • Overcoming obstacles • Purifying past negative deeds and negative karma • Calming the environment, natural disasters and calamities • Helping the deceased to take a good rebirth • Accumulation of merits for spiritual realisations and attainments
Join us this weekend for Spiritual Saturday in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 7 MARCH 9.30 am: Polish Gyenze's wish-fulfilling lamps 11.15 am: Introduction to Ayurveda 1.00 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? WhatsApp us at +6017 672 0757 to RSVP your place (and your meal!) See all March activities: bit.ly/2vAGpjF
5 months ago
Join us this weekend for Spiritual Saturday in Kechara Forest Retreat! SATURDAY, 7 MARCH 9.30 am: Polish Gyenze's wish-fulfilling lamps 11.15 am: Introduction to Ayurveda 1.00 pm: Lunch INTERESTED? WhatsApp us at +6017 672 0757 to RSVP your place (and your meal!) See all March activities: bit.ly/2vAGpjF
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Dorje Shugden
Click to watch my talk about Dorje Shugden....