Tashi Lhunpo Monks to give White Tara teaching, a Tara Blessing, and a sacred Cultural Performance at the Tibetan Cultrual Center.

On Sunday, February 1 st 2004, seven Tibetan Buddhist monks from the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery who are currently on a tour of North America will be at the Tibetan Cultural Center. One of the four great monasteries of the Gelugpa school of Tibetan Buddhism, the Tashi Lhunpo monastery now operates in India after being brutally expelled from Tibet, the original monastery is under seige by the PRC. The Tashi Lhunpo monastery is the seat of the Panchen Lama, the second most important spiritual leader of the Tibetan people after the Dalai Lama. None-the less, the Tashi Lhunpo monastery remains one of the poorest Tibetan monasteries in India . There are 250 monks studying there – not only Tibetan refugees, but also from many parts of India (particularly Ladakh, Zanskhar and Himachal Pradesh) as well as from Nepal , Bhutan and Sikkim . Since it was re-established in India in 1972, the monastery's priority has been to continue to provide the monks with the best possible teaching and facilities to enable them to preserve their unique culture.  The Dalai Lama himself has asked for special help to be offered to Tashi Lhunpo Monastery to ensure its survival. The monks are on a tour of North America to advocated for the release of the 14 year Panchen Lama; teach dharma, and raise donations for their monastery.

Schedule of events:

Sunday, February 1 st

12:00 Noon
Geshe Lobtin, resident abbot of the Chamtse Ling, will offer our regularly scheduled dharma teaching, one hour earlier than usual.

1:00 P.M.
A Tibetan Lunch will available for a nominal cost at the TCC main building the menu will include vegetarian and meat dishes, salad, beverages, and deserts.

3:00 p.m.
White Tara teaching in the Chamtse Ling - The head monk on the tour will teach about White Tara (Tibetan: drolma kar mo: the female Buddha of longevity). Tara is a completely enlightened Buddha and as a young Bodhisattva she promised always to appear in the form of a female Bodhisattva and goddess for the benefit of all sentient beings and especially to protect from the eight fears. In this white form she appears specifically for the purpose of bestowing longevity. Her love heals at the source of disease, bringing health, strength, longevity, and beauty. She wears the Bodhisattva ornaments. One Bodhisattva vow is to continue to return to this world until the enlightenment of all sentient beings is achieved. Suggested donation $10

7:00 p.m.
The Tashi Lhunpo monks will give a performance of Sacred Cultural Dances called Cham in the TCC main building. Cham originated with the earliest Buddhist practices as great masters passed their visions of deities in movements to students. Tashi Lhunpo's performance is unique with its ceremonies that feature harmonic overtone chanting of traditional prayers, accompanied by temple instruments such as horns, flutes, bells, and drums, sacred masked dances, richly ornamented, multicolored costumes, and monastic debate. A highlight is Kunrick, a chant with hundreds of hand gestures, seach with specific spiritual meaning. This art of hand symbolism is unique to the monastery. It is performed to revitalize spiritual energies that generate wisdom, compassion, and the healing powers of Enlightened Beings. This event provides a fascinating and warm glimpse into ancient and current Tibetan Culture. Richly costumed dancers, including, masked animals will perform together with a narrator accompanying each piece. Suggested donation $15