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<-Back to WTN Archives His Holiness Celebrates Guru Rinpoche's Birthday with 50,000 Buddhist Pilgrims
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World Tibet Network News

Published by the Canada Tibet Committee

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

2. His Holiness Celebrates Guru Rinpoche's Birthday with 50,000 Buddhist Pilgrims


Rewalsar, March 1 - About 50, 000 Buddhists pilgrims from all around the
world, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, arrived at Tso Pema/Rewalsar
to observe the triple significant occasion-holy day, month and year. Today
is the auspicious 10th day of the 1st month of the Tibetan lunar calendar
and it is celebrated as the birthday of Guru Padma Sambava ("The Lotus Born"
Guru) who was supposedly born in the monkey year which falls this year. This
triple festival only comes once every 12 years.

The celebration started this morning with propitiation of Nechung and Gadong
oracles, followed by traditional Cham mask dances at the Nyingon Zahor
Tsopema Ugyen Sheruka Phodrang Monastery. Later at 1 p.m., His Holiness
initiated the gathered pilgrims into Thubdup Sangwa Khepar Troteng Tsalshin
Duptha -a sacred Nyingma empowerment on propitiation and realisation.
Yesterday, His Holiness was invited at a grand reception at Soree Manch
organised by various organisations in Mandi where the Bharat Tibbat Sanyog
Manch (India-Tibet Cooperation Forum) officially declared 2004 as the year
of Tibet. At the reception, His Holiness shared his hope for the 21st
Century as an era of peace, cooperation and mutual respect in the world. He
also mentioned India's role as the spiritual leader of the world and the
need for India to mobilise globally its ancient values of tolerance, peace
and non-violence.

His Holiness was welcomed in Mandi and Rewalsar by the Himachal Pradesh
Governor, Mr. V.S. Kokje, and the Chief of Municipal Committee, Mrs. Sushila
Sonkhla. Both in their talks praised His Holiness for his selfless
commitment in spreading peace across the world.

His Holiness said India-Tibet friendship is not new. Bonds of love and
understanding between the two nations were centuries old. Tibet's Buddhist
tradition comes from India.

About Tibet His Holiness said, "We are passing through a period of great
crisis. Our religion, philosophy, culture and identity are in danger. We are
seeking a peaceful solution for regaining our motherland based on tolerance
and non violence".

Yesterday, His Holiness also inaugurated the Tsechu with ribbon cutting and
lighting a butter lamp. Later he visited Guru Rinpoche Caves, Kagyu Dzigar
Monastery and Nyingma Monastery.

Guru Rinpoche, Padma Sambhava, was an Indian Tantric sage who brought
Buddhism from India to Tibet in the 8th Century AD. Invited from India by
Tibetan King Trisong Deutsen, Padma Sambhava converted the entire country
and is the patriarch of the Nyingmapa lineage. It is believed that Guru
Rinpoche meditated in the caves around Rewalsar Lake and his blessings
flourish in the area and especially on the floating reeds on Rewalsar Lake.

His Holiness will return tomorrow to Dharamsala.

Articles in this Issue:
  1. Buddhists converge at Mandi (PTI)
  2. His Holiness Celebrates Guru Rinpoche's Birthday with 50,000 Buddhist Pilgrims

Other articles this month - WTN Index - Mail the WTN-Editors

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