Great Kagyu Monlam Aspiration, Thursday 20th December


Mahabodhi Temple: Before dawn broke, Choje Gyaltsab Rinpoche conferred the Sojong vows at the Mahabodhi Temple and led the first session of the Monlam from 6.00am until 9.00am.
Gyalwang Karmapa joined the assembly at 9.30 am, resuming his transmission of The Life of Milarepa. He then gave a commentary on the Prayer of Samantabhadra: The King of Aspiration Prayers before leading the chanting of it. After lunch, he returned to the Mahabodhi Temple to lead the Akshobhya Ritual in the third session.
Medical Camp: More than a thousand people arrived for medical treatment at the camp. Staff reported that the majority of local patients were suffering from diseases associated with poverty; the result of sub-standard living conditions, lack of clean water, and especially malnutrition. Indeed, most of the patients were malnourished; the children especially were underweight and undersized for their age.

Evening Teaching at Tergar Monastery: In the second part of a three-part series, Gyalwang Karmapa continued his exposition of Kyobpa’s The Fivefold Mahamudra. He concentrated on verses two and three:
If your body, the king of the enlightened form,
Does not hold the throne of the unchanging basis,
Mother dakinis, the citizens, will not appear,
So, earnestly focus on seeing your body as the yidam deity.

If, on the snow mountain, the lama of the four kayas,
The sun of devotion does not shine,
Streams of blessing will not flow.
So, earnestly focus on cultivating this devotion.
Gyalwang Karmapa referred to the Tibetan idea that if something helps it’s of use. . . . (For a continuation of this extended summary of the Thursday teachings, go to His Holiness's Teachings at the 25th Great Kagyu Monlam)
The evening concluded with Gyalwang Karmapa conferring the Bodhisattva Vows. - Tashi Paljor


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