Bülach’s city hall was filled to the brim with over two thousand Tibetans and westerners who came this morning to receive the empowerment of Avalokiteshvara from the Gyalwang Karmapa, who is considered an emanation of this deity embodying the compassion of all the buddhas. The sound of six-syllable mantra filled the air while the Karmapa performed the preparations in a curtained area of the stage. He then came to take his seat on the central throne, to the left of which hung an impressive image of Avalokiteshvara.
The ceremony began with the Praises to the Buddha, the request to teach, purification, and creating a protected space for the empowerment. After everyone took refuge and generated bodhicitta, and a mandala was offered, the Karmapa spoke about the empowerment itself. The source of the lineage for this the Four-Armed Avalokiteshvara, he explained, is the mahasiddha Tsultrim Zangpo from Nari, who is said to have lived hundreds of years. Among the many different types of empowerments, this is the one of transformative primordial awareness.
We should be taking the empowerment, he said, in order to engage in the practice of Avalokiteshvara, which is a practice focused on compassion since he represents or embodies the compassion of all the buddhas. When we engage in the practice Avalokiteshvara, we are practicing great compassion. How to understand great compassion? We wish, “May all living beings be free of suffering,” or “How wonderful it would be if all creatures were released from misery!” or “I will liberate all beings from suffering.” Great compassion is the wholehearted, powerful wish to free all living beings from their suffering.
“In order to generate compassion for other beings,” the Karmapa counseled, “it is important first to generate compassion for ourselves. Renunciation and compassion are like two sides of the same coin: renunciation—letting go of samsara and its suffering—is how we create benefit for ourselves, and compassion—the wish to free others from samsaric suffering—is how we benefit others.”
Bodhisattvas skillfully rely on instructions for practice. “Usually we think of ourselves when we think of being free of suffering and wishing for happiness,” the Karmapa noted. “In their wisdom, bodhisattvas think of others, knowing that just as one desires well being and happiness, so do others, and thus the bodhisattva’s compassion expands. Their skill in means is wondrous.”
“Usually when a real empowerment is given,” the Karmapa continued, “the one bestowing it has the true meaning or significance of the empowerment in their heart-mind and they convey this to those receiving the initiation.” Today, however, there was not enough time, so the empowerment would bring a blessing and create a good connection.
The words of the empowerment were profound and moving. For the empowerment related to the body, people became a radiant Avalokiteshvara who arose out of emptiness; for speech, compassion arose while not moving from the awareness of emptiness; and for wisdom, mind was never separate from the nature of mahamudra.
After an offering of thanksgiving and dedication, the Karmapa made a few remarks on the practice and form of Avalokiteshvara. If our practice goes well, he explained, we will know because our compassion will increase. In speaking of form, he said that at first he thought he knew the manifestations of Avalokiteshvara well, the two-armed, the four-armed, the eight-armed, the thousand-armed, and so forth, but there are over one hundred forms—so many that it can be confusing. When he thought about it, however, he concluded that the thousand-armed form was the best. Why? It is difficult to help one living being and fulfill their wishes, he commented, and when one wants to help a vast number, the symbolism of the thousand-armed Avalokiteshvara is more appropriate. The multiplicity of his arms suggests a dynamic and vast motivation to help all living beings.
The Karmapa added that while we are meditating on ourselves as Avalokiteshvara, the practice does not only involve taking on his form, but becoming the embodiment of the compassion of all the buddhas. We maintain this state, he said, through what is known as “the pride of the deity.” When we hold this kind of compassion in our mind, it would be strange to get angry or to be jealous, so this particular type of superior pride can be helpful in diminishing our afflictions.
“Meditating in a deity should inspire us and increase our mind’s capacity,” he remarked. “We should not think that there is some powerful being out there in front of us, but rather that we are connecting with a particular power or quality and ‘downloading’ this into our midstream.” With this encouragement to practice Avalokiteshvara and deepen our compassion, the Karmapa concluded the empowerment.
His Holiness Karmapa has arrived in New Jersey, United States. Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche, President Khenpo Karma Tenkyong, Khenpo Ugyen Tenzin, KTD and Karme Ling lamas, New Jersey KTC Lama Tsultrim, and Danang Foundation Lama Tsewang Rinpoche welcomed him.
When we can no longer bear the suffering of sentient beings, says the Seventeenth Karmapa, we unleash our full potential to help others and ourselves.
Practices of loving-kindness and compassion are indispensable elements of all religious traditions. These are qualities everyone can practice, regardless of their religious affiliation or ancestry. In fact, training to develop loving-kindness and compassion provides a bridge between all religions and all the many parts of our global society.
I am a Buddhist, but I still have to live my life as a member of the larger world community and take full part in society, where Buddhism is not the only spiritual tradition. There are many different forms of religion and spirituality, and there are also many different types of people, including those who are inclined toward religious or spiritual approaches and those who are not.
Since our world community is so very vast and diverse, it is important for us to respect the…
The most important practice in Tibetan Buddhism is Guru Yoga, meditation and mantra on the spiritual head and teacher of the tradition, which is seen as living Buddha, embodiment of three kayas and 10 bhumi (extraordinary powers). In Kagyu tradition the head Lama is Gyalwa Karmapa and his mantra is Karmapa Chenno. It is believed sounds of this mantra are directly connected with the enlightened mind of HH Karmapa and carry its enlightened qualities and brings help when it is most necessary for the benefit of student. Here I would like to share with you a story about the origins of Karmapa Chenno mantra. The Karmapa mantra has originated at the times of 8thKarmapa Mikyo Dorje (1507-1554) in context of teaching about "Calling the Lama from afar." “Karmapa Chenno” can be roughly translated as "Embodiment of the compassion of all Buddhas, turn attention to me." In Central Tibet, Sikkim and Bhutan, it is pronounced Karmapa Kyen-no or Karmapa khen-no. In East Tibet, it is p…
Recently the Gyalwang Karmapa went through a medical examination in Germany, his doctor strongly advise him to stop all Dharma propagation activities so that he has more time and space to treat some of the medical conditions that he has. After much consideration, the Gyalwang Karmapa decided to cancel this year’s Asia Dharma Teaching, i.e. the Diamond Sutra Teaching.
When we heard about the Gyalwang Karmapa’s decision to cancel the teaching, our emotions evolved from unspeakable shock to calm contemplation. Eventually, we understand the difficulty and necessity to make such a decision. We will continue to pray that the Diamond Sutra Teaching to be held in future, yet we are unsure when and where the teaching will be held. Therefore, we will begin the refund process for those who had registered for the teaching after we had negotiated with the hotel for refund.
Even though we feel a sense of regret that the Diamond Sutra Teaching cannot be held, yet we understand and …
ONE EARLY MORNING [in 1980] His Holiness the Sixteenth Gyalwa Karmapa generously granted an interview to the readers of Densal. What follows is the text of that interview, word for word, as translated by Ngodup Tsering Burkhar. In it, His Holiness touches on many important aspects of spiritual practice, the Kagyu lineage, and life in the world today for the Dharma practitioner. It is a timely and most valuable teaching for Buddhists and non-Buddhists alike.
Densal: This is your third tour to America. Do you have any observations you would like to share about it, and about the growth of the Dharma in the United States? H.H.: The responsibility of the teacher is to always give the teachings. It doesn't matter that only a short time has passed, or a long time has passed; what matters is that the teachings are continuously given. Sometimes it may seem to be more appropriate to teach because most people are at leisure and have a lot of time, and it appears to be a good time to give teach…
First the Gyalwang Karmapa spoke a few words related to the birthday of HH the Dalai Lama:
We Tibetans consider the birthday of HH the Dalai Lama to be extremely important. We are most fortunate that he lights our way like a blazing torch as we pass through these dark and difficult times. His birthday, therefore, is an important occasion for us. Born in the Land of Snow, His Holiness is the protector and refuge for all the Tibetan people. This enormous good fortune brings delight to all of us and also gives us great courage.
However we might celebrate his birthday, we can recall his life story and his worldwide activity to benefit others.
In relation to any advice he might give us, it is essential that we consider how we can assist him and implement his counsel in its true sense. Not only has His Holiness devoted himself to improving our material welfare externally, he has also encouraged the growth of our spiritual welfare internally. In response, from our…
A group from Palpung Wales, which actually consisted of people from all over UK, traveled to join the His Holiness 17th Karmapa’s first teaching weekend in London, Battersea. It was an absolute privilege to be part of that weekend, in many ways. We received touching and inspiring teachings from His Holiness Karmapa on Geshe Langri Tangpa’s famous “Eight verses of Mind Training,” a key instruction on how to bring the Dharma into daily life. At the same time it was like a gesture of welcoming His Holiness Karmapa’s 17th incarnation to this country for the first time. Meeting with the many Dharma friends and coming together in His Holiness’s mandala was a very heart-warming experience. We were also very fortunate to have a group audience with His Holiness on Saturday afternoon. From original Palpung Wales group it slowly formed into a Palpung United group of about 60 people from Wales, Ireland and Slovenia, and some from Italy as well. It was a great chance, although only…
The land of Sikkim, at the border of India and Tibet, was consecrated as a hidden sanctuary for the Buddha's teachings during the present epoch by the second Buddha, the great master Padmasambhava, who blessed it with the vajra wisdom of his body, speech, and mind. Through the infallible power of his aspiration and through our great effort, the monastery Shaydrup Kunkhyap Otong Khyilway Tsuklakhang (the Temple of Pervasive Teaching and Practice Blazing with a Thousand Lights), has been established for the preservation of the precious doctrine of the Buddha, which is the source of all benefit and happiness in existence and tranquility, and for the sake of all beings in the world.
Before the building's foundation was begun, I performed the customary removal of impediments and, using a sand mandala, the ritual of Chakrasamvara, blessing the location so that it is his wisdom mandala. In that and similar ways, the site has been consecrated m…
2 Apr 2017ChandigarhNaresh K Thakur n firstname.lastname@example.org
DHARAMSHALA: With his rival Trinley Thaye Dorje now a married man, who shed monk’s robes to get hitched with his childhood friend, the claim of Ogyen Trinley Dorje to the title of the 17th Karmapa and Rumtek Monastery throne has become stronger
Thaye Dorje, 33, married Rinchen Yangzom, 36, in a private ceremony attended by close family members in New Delhi on March 25 and announced it on March 30. His office described the couple as “close childhood friends” who have known each other for more than 19 years.
Karmapa is the title given to the spiritual leader of the Karma Kagyu sect, one of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism and are the oldest institutionalised series of rebirths in Tibetan Buddhism, preceding the Dalai Lama of Gelug sect. Currently, there are three contenders who claim to be the rightful reincarnation of 16th Karmapa. While Ogyen Dorje, who is recognised by the Dalai Lama as well as the Peoples’…