I would like to share the teachings and meditations HH Karmapa is giving under the bodhi tree at mid morning after reading sections of Milarepa’s life story. Many of these points are reminders taught in a startlingly vivid way.
Archive for December, 2009
Prayer wheels looking like paper lanterns hang suspended from the main gate leading to the stupa. In the early morning and at night they glow with coloured lights (when electricity permits). Made from wood and covered in white cloth they are painted with the mantra OM PEMO KHA BEMA LE HUNG PHAT. This mantra has powers of purification so that all who pass through the gate will receive some spiritual benefit.
Inside the grounds there is a noticeable improvement in the level of organisation and discipline Young Tibetans (dharmapalas) in dark uniforms remind you to take off your shoes and point out the appropriate areas to sit. The paths are immaculate; the mats laid out generously indicating seating areas. There’s even leg room for stretching prostration bruised knees. Volunteers in special jackets (designed by His Holiness) move deftly bearing huge teapots.
Letter to a Friend – Nagarjuna
The shrine room at Tergar Monastery in Bodh Gaya was packed with 1500 people from 52 countries. The seating was organised deftly to give every group a chance to sit at the front and gaze at the powerfully expressive face of the Karmapa. The throne, the shrine, the gigantic Buddha, the face of Karmapa – all seemed washed with gold. Chyamsin-la, the Karmapa’s sister, offered the mandala to request the teachings.
From my notes which have been edited.
The reason we chose this text, His Holiness Karmapa informed the international assembly, is that it is primarily an instruction for householders on how to practise the dharma. Nagarjuna wrote it to his friend, the King of South India. It includes the five vows and the practice of the 6 paramitas.
This year, we have a dedicated webcasting site for His Holiness’s teachings and the Milarepa performance on January 1st.
I visited the site of the performance recently and agreed with everyone who had remarked: the stage is HUGE! Rounded with an inner step of bricks, cement and dry red earth and the background, a field of dry grass and a long horizon, the stage is perfectly set to stand out. We are so excited about this event so look for further developments in this story.