Others Before Self: TCV Suja Students Serve as Dharma Protectors
year senior students from Tibetan Children’s Village Suja, in Bir Tibetan
Settlement Himachal Pradesh, come cheerfully to Bodhgaya to serve at the Kagyu
Monlam. These are the Monlam’s Dharmapalas, the protectors of the Buddhadharma.
numbers have grown over the years as their duties have expanded and their
invaluable contribution to the smooth running of the Monlam has been
recognised. This year 100 students have come, equally divided between boys and
girls. The youngest is fifteen years old and the oldest is twenty. Their main
responsibility is supporting the work of the security team; they help run the
check-points and supervise all the entrances to restricted areas within the
Monlam Pavillion. In addition, when the stage has to be changed for the
next puja, they will be there, helping the young monks to heft heavy furniture
or moving mattresses and seats. But you will also see them interacting with
little children, fetching chairs for the elderly or helping to push someone in
a wheelchair to a better place where they can see the stage, and generally
helping out. The motto of the TCV school organisation is “Others before
self”, and these young people can truly be said to put it into action.
year they form an important part of the Garchen, the Great Encampment of the
Karmapas, and have their own allocation of six large blue tents. Inside each
tent, students have individual net tents to protect them against the mosquitoes
which plague Bodhgaya and carry malaria.
is difficult to conceive of the situation in which many of these young Tibetans
find themselves. The majority of them have come from Tibet in order to have a
better chance in life and a comprehensive education. In order to do this, they
have had to make great personal sacrifices, leaving behind their family, their
friends and the way of life they knew.
for example, is from Lhasa and has been in India for eight years. During that
time, he tells how he never had a chance to go on holiday until he was given
the opportunity to come to Bodhgaya as a Dharmapala. “I am so grateful to His
Holiness, “he said. “He gave us all the chance to get out of school and see the
is also from Lhasa. He told how his mother had brought him to India when he was
only five years old because the situation in his family and in Tibet was not
good at that time. He is now eighteen years old and has only had contact with
his mother once during those thirteen years. He has no other family in
India, so while he was growing up, school holidays were particularly difficult.
Other children in his hostel had relatives to visit during the long two- month
winter holiday, and with whom they could celebrate Tibetan New Year. But
Tsering and those without relatives in India had nowhere to go. They had to stay
praised the housemother in his hostel who had been like a real mother to him,
and also the Karmapa, who has taken such an interest in the young people at
visits every year and stays with us,” Tsering said proudly. “He speaks with us,
and he really cares for us. He has made it possible for me to have a holiday in
this sacred place.” This is Tsering’s third and final year at the Monlam. Next
year he will have to stay back to study for his school leaving certificate
examinations, with the hope that he will do well enough to win a scholarship to
university. For now, he is just exceedingly happy and full of gratitude
that he was given the chance to come yet again to Bodhgaya and didn’t
have to spend the winter holiday at school.
joy at being in Bodhgaya and the Monlam is evident on the faces of all the
Dharmapalas. Sometimes they have to be on duty from 2.30am until late at night,
but there are never any complaints. As one of the teachers, said, “This year is
better than ever. It’s going very well. Each year it gets better and runs more
smoothly because we have more experience.”
the first day of Losar, the Dharmapalas had to be on duty by 3.00am as monks,
nuns and laypeople arrived for the 4.00am puja. Each had received a special
Losar gift from His Holiness the Karmapa. The boys now wore a new chuba in
heavy black brocade and long-sleeved white silk shirt. The girls wore
traditional, sleeved chubas in deep blue brocade and subtly
colour-coordinated with pale- blue silk blouses.
clothes will be theirs to keep; an expression of the Karmapa’s gratitude to
them for their service and an acknowledgement of their shared experience as
child refugees, cut off at a young age from home and family, ‘strangers in a
During his first visit to the UK from May 17 to 28, 2017, the Karmapa, a prominent Tibetan Buddhist leader, joined former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Rowan Williams together with scientists, scholars and cultural figures for a dialogue on the environment hosted by the International Campaign for Tibet and Inspire Dialogue Foundation.
The round table discussion, held on May 24, 2017, was intended to bring together perspectives “between disciplines and generations” as the beginning of an ongoing exchange, according to Lord Williams, Master of Magdalen College and a noted poet and theologian. It involved figures from the arts and sciences, including Jude Kelly, Artistic Director of the Southbank Centre in London; James Thornton, the founding CEO of ClientEarth; Dame Fiona Reynolds, former Director-General of the National Trust; Dr Bhaskar Vira, Director, University of Cambridge Conservation Research Institute; Tracey Seaward, film producer …
May 29, 2017 - The 17th Karmapa, one of Tibet’s leading Buddhist figures arrived in Toronto yesterday on his first visit to Canada. Known for his concerns about current global issues as well as for his spiritual leadership, the 31-year-old Karmapa will engage in a wide range of religious activities and will speak on environmental and social responsibility at various universities.
During his month long trip to Canada, the Karmapa will travel to Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. In doing so, he is following in the footsteps of his predecessor the 16th Karmapa, who travelled extensively throughout the country and was instrumental in introducing Canadians to Buddhism in the 1970s.
Head of the Karma Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, the Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, is the 17th holder of a 900-year old lineage. Born in a nomadic family in eastern Tibet, he made headline news in 2000 with his dramatic escape to India, where he now lives near the Dalai Lama. The 17th …
Worshipped as a living god, will the 17th Karmapa Lama also inherit the Dalai Lama’s imagery of divinity and celebrity? By MARTIN REGG COHNOntario Politics Columnist Tues., May 30, 2017
It is not his destiny to be the next Dalai Lama. For he is already reincarnated as the 17th Karmapa Lama.
Yet he may one day succeed his 81-year-old teacher and protector.
Revered since age 7 as spiritual leader of a 1,000-year-old branch of Tibetan Buddhism, Ogyen Trinley Dorje is making his first trip to Canada this week at the age of 31.
Meeting Ontario politicians Tuesday before sitting down for an interview, the Karmapa padded around Queen’s Park in a pair of brown hiking shoes peeking out from under his simple maroon robes. A picture of youthful wisdom with his direct gaze, towering above other monks at six feet tall, he may yet emerge as the public face of Tibetan Buddhism
Worshipped as a living god and the Buddha of Compassion, will he also inherit the Dalai Lama’s imagery of divinity and celebrity?
Transforming Disturbing Emotions: Dialogue of the Three Major Traditions of Buddhism Date: Thursday, June 1st, 9:30AM – 12:00PM Place: University of Toronto, Convocation Hall (MAP) Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gp9TaET_SNw
How to Apply Ancient Wisdom in Modern Times In these two sessions, His Holiness will discuss the basic nature of mind and the methods of obtaining happiness through listening to and contemplating the teachings of the Buddha, and then meditating according to the teachings. Date: Friday, June 2nd, 9:30-11:30AM, 2:00-4:30PM Place:The Enercare Centre, Hall D (MAP) Video: How to Apply Ancient Wisdom in Modern Times 1…
May 31, 2017– In the morning after his arrival, at 9:00AM, Wednesday, May 31, 2017, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje arrived at Karma Sonam Dargye Ling– a Tibetan Buddhist centre under the direction of Lama Tenzin Dakpa. This was a visit of great significance, as the centre was first established in 1976 by the venerable Lama Namsel Rinpoche under the request of His Holiness the 16th Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje.
Upon arrival, His Holiness was ushered into the main shrine hall and seated on the highest throne, on which he proceeded to receive a body-speech-mind offering from the sangha. The yellow rice and tea ceremony followed in sequence for the welcome ceremony. Shortly after tea was served, the current resident teacher of Karma Sonam Dargye Ling, Lama Tenzin Dakpa, rose to speak.
Lama Tenzin referenced the founder of this centre, Lama Namsel Rinpoche, as one of the first Canadian resident lamas to request for His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa to visit Canada. …
Thursday, 01 June 2017 16:04Lavania Saraf, Tibet Post International
London, UK — "Free from concretizing the eight worldly concerns, we train our mind in the illusion-like outlook that sees things as not real," the 17th Karmapa said during his first trip to the UK, Through training our mind, "our compassion and patience increase and our minds open up."
The 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, was received with anticipation and delight on his first visit to the United Kingdom on May 17th, 2017. His arrival in central London was received by numeral devotees and included a special reception with traditional English afternoon tea.
The visit had been highly anticipated by Karmapa himself, especially due to the strong dharmic connection between the United Kingdom and the Karmapa lineage, believed to be established earlier by the 16th Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje. On May 18th, Karmapa visited the British Museum where some of the most crucial documents and artifacts in the his…
After a very successful visit to the United Kingdom, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, arrived early afternoon for his first ever visit to Canada. He was welcomed at the Toronto airport by members of the Karma Kagyu Association of Canada (KKAC) and numerous devotees, who displayed a colorful bilingual banner with the KKAC insignia, ¨Karmapa, Welcome to Canada.¨ As he walked slowly past a long line of devotees offering white katas, the Karmapa smiled warmly at everyone.
Still looking delighted, he arrived at his hotel where an official reception followed that included over one hundred guests. Dungse Lama Pema began with a welcome speech thanking His Holiness for accepting the invitation to come to Canada, and his staff members for working so hard to make this visit possible. Lama Tenzin Dakpa and several members of the legislature followed with short speeches to express their joy and gratitude. A welcoming Tibetan ceremony was…
In his first ever visit to Canada, the 17th Karmapa, head of the Karma Kagyu, the largest sub-school of the Kagyu sect of Tibetan Buddhism paid a visit to the Ontario Legislative Assembly and attended the fifth anniversary of Tibet Day at the invitation of the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, Canada at the provincial parliament on May 30, 2017.
Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje also met with five members of the legislative assembly and thanked them for their support for Tibet and Tibetans settled in Ontario area, and urged the officials to continue their support towards Tibetans in Canada.
Mr. Sonam Langkar, the President of the Toronto Tibetan Association, along with members of the local Tibetan community attended the event.
Karmapa and his entourage toured the legislative assembly building following the gathering, and as part of the Tibet Day celebration, the organizers with the help from local Tibetans prepared traditional Tibetan cuisine.