The Song Whose Time Has Come: The Melodius Hum of a Bee
by H.H. the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa,
Rangjung Rigpe Dorje (1924 - 1981)
This song is ala ala ala. It is
thala thala thala. "Ala" means it is a song of the
unborn. "Thala" is a word that invokes.
If you do
not recognize this place, It is the place of Akanishtha's heart chakra. In the mandala of glorious
Chakrasamvara, The main seat is Tsurphu in the
Dowo valley. If you do
not recognize a person like me, I belong to the family lineage of
'den, a good ancestry. If you call me by name, I am known as Rigdröl
Yeshe. This victory banner of the teaching
of glorious Dakpo's lineage Is raised
high on the summit of worldly existence, they say, Planted at the
end of a series, held high and never declining. Nourished by the essence of the
father lama's oral instructions, It is the perfection of the great
display of innate primordial wisdom. From the
land of high snows, this turquoise mane of the lion Pervades the
countries of the future, they say. In the exquisite sandalwood
forests, lives a huge tiger With a powerful roar and the radiant color of
clouds at dawn. Insatiably he conquers the wild animals
of wrong views. What I have spoken is the truth, the Victorious
One's power, Resounding over the lake with its waters of eight
qualities Like the pleasant sound of
hastening ducks. In the
sky, vast and all-pervading, Are set the sun and moon, luminous and
natural. The most famous one called
Rigdröl Does not remain, yet knows not where he will go. The swan
places its trust in the lake And the lake, unreliable, turns to ice. The white lion places its trust on
the snow, But fine, white snow attracts the sun. May all the
noble ones left behind in the snowy land of Tibet Not come under the
sway of the four elements. From unmanifest space, the protector Padmasambhava looks after
them, Holding them always with his gentle hook of compassion. May all
sentient beings who have a connection with me Bring to fruition the four
supreme kayas. I do not stay now, yet my place is uncertain; I go to
experience the fruition of previous lives' karma. In
springtime a cuckoo will come to Tibet. Its lovely song will strike sadness
in your heart. Then you will wonder where the man Rigdröl is. Will not
you, who depend on me, know untold grief? On the
day the swan circles the edge of the lake And leaves its fledglings in the
darkening swamp, The day the white vulture soars in the depths of the
sky, You will wonder where the man Rigdröl is. O
Fledglings, I feel untold grief for you. Now I will not explain much; this is
but a jest, Yet unified with ultimate reality. When the Lord of the Path is held by the
king of birds, In prayer
I aspire that we gather in great joy. For this life, take this as the
essential point to be heard: Speech is indestructible sound like an
echo. Mind is empty, free of material concerns. On the
path that does not take up the positive nor reject the negative, The
conduct of the king of birds is relaxed within itself. Examine in detail this meaning in a
hundred flavors. Ki so so, gathering of wrathful Wermas.
"Akanishtha" can have several meanings;
here, it poetically refers to Tsurphu as a sambhogakaya pure land. Three of the
main monasteries associated with the Karmapa are linked to the enlightened body,
speech, and mind of the Buddha: Kampo gangra (Kam po gangs ra) represents the
body, Karma gon (Karma dgon), the speech, and Tsurphu (mTshur phu), the
One of the main deities practiced in
the Kagyu lineage.
The Dowo is the name of the river
that flows by Tsurphu and gives its name to the valley.
 This is a childhood name of the XVIth
Karmapa, used until his enthronement at the age of eight.
Dakpo Lhaje or Gampopa was the teacher
of the first Karmapa, Düsum Khyenpa.
 "Series" refers to the unbroken
lineage of the Kagyü teachings.
The snow lion's mane is vast and a
metaphor here for the teachings of Buddhism in Tibet.
 The lustrous saffron color of the
tiger refers to the brilliance of the Dharma.
The water is cool, sweet, light, soft,
clear, pleasant, wholesome, and soothing.
 The metaphors of the lake and ducks
refer to the clear and pleasing quality of the Dharma and to the fact that it
pervades the great oceans.
This metaphor refers to the naturally
luminous quality of the Dharma and to the fact that it pervades all
The Karmapa is the swan residing on the
lake of his monastery, Tsurphu. When the Chinese invade Tibet and take over the
monastery, it becomes uninhabitable like a frozen lake.
The lion is also the Karmapa, who
relies on his monastery of Tsurphu in the snowy land of Tibet. The heat of the
sun, which melts the snow, is a metaphor for the destruction of Tsurphu during
the Cultural Revolution. Both metaphors of the swan and its lake and the lion
and its snow indicate that although the Karmapa wished to remain at Tsurphu, it
was not possible.
Here, the Karmapa prays that
those who could not escape will be protected from harm caused by the four
elements, such as being drowned in water, burned by fire, and so forth.
 Referring to the troubles in Tibet and
the immense suffering of its people.
Again the swan is the Karmapa departing
for India and the young birds left behind are the people of Tibet, and in
particular, his disciples.
There are two kinds of vulture
(rgod) in Tibet, the white and the black. They are renowned as being
able to fly higher than any other bird. It is another metaphor for the
"The Lord of the Path" refers to the
astrological path or cycle of twelve years and the "king of birds" refers to the
year of the bird, when the XVIIth Karmapa will be back in his monastery,
beginning his activity again.
Here, "the king of birds" refers to the
vulture and, in particular, to the way it flies, soaring and gliding at ease in
These previous four lines refer to
meditation on the true nature of mind.
"Ki" points to one's courage and
intelligence; "so" is like a loud whistle, meaning "Wake up! Be aware! Pay
Wermas are dharmapalas (protectors of
the Dharma) with great dignity and courage.
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…
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…
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 …
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…
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…
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 email@example.com
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’…