Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Obstacle Clearing & Prayer Blessings Grand Puja by H.E. Dagyab Rinpoche - 25, 26, 27 Jan 2013

Once again, the highly anticipated Grand Puja is here again, which is happening this weekend starting this Friday 25 Jan 2013 to Sun 27 Jan 2013. Conducted by His Eminence Dagyab Kyabgoen Rinpoche and 17 monks from Gaden Shartse Monastery, this Grand Puja is timely for clearing obstacles and to pray for immense blessings from the Three Jewels just before the Lunar New Year of the Snake arrives. 

As the Chinese New Year is coming, participants would be able to have the opportunity to increase their merits by multiple-fold through contributing to a great cause. Our happiness in this lifetime and/or future lifetimes depends very much on the causes we create at this very moment, and what great cause other than giving the gift of the Dharma? 

During the Grand Puja, participants and devotees would be able to support and make sponsorship towards:
1.    Food fund for 1300 monks in Gaden Shartse Monastery
2.    Grand Long Life Puja for His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
3.    Air tickets of Sangha for this Grand Puja
4.    Special diet meals for Old Geshes

During the 3-day Grand Puja, all visitors are advised to park at the nearby ICA Building if you are driving, which is a 5-minute walk from the venue Tai Pei Centre. In between breaks, visitors would be able to find food from nearby coffee shops and food courts in the Lavender area.

Below is the programme and details of the Grand Puja. Organised by Gaden Shartse Dro-Phen Ling,  these large scale public pujas are extremely popular with many devotees. Since 2004, they have experienced and benefited from the rare healing and blessings prayer sessions. Also, my guru Dagyab Rinpoche is one of the rare masters living today who holds the most transmissions and lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. So I would encourage my readers to attend and gain from the powerful pujas and to receive blessings from a rare and unassuming guru teacher.

White Umbrella Goddess
White Umbrella Goddess Demon-Subduing Grand Puja
25/01/13 (Friday), 10.00am to 12.30pm

White Umbrella Goddess Blessing Initiation
26/01/13 (Saturday), 7.30pm to 9.30pm

This grand puja is a ritual based on the practice of the White Umbrella Goddess, and is one of the most powerful and sacred puja amongst various Buddhist rituals. One procedure of this ritual is to consecrate and offer tormas (ritual cakes) to counter-attack negative forces such as illnesses, mental disturbances, disputes, enmities, defilements, misfortune, premature death, factors against congenial surroundings and 84,000 bad forces. Hence, this puja is named DUKAR TORTHOG in Tibetan, literally meaning - counter attacking negativities through torma offerings.

By this ritual, we drive away all harms and evils by the blessings of the White Umbrella Goddess and her surrounding deities in the form of tormas (one big torma in the middle representing the Goddess, and surrounded by 33 white flags representing the deities). More than 30 different kinds of ingredients are required for this puja - whereby it serves to offer to specific deities, and seek their protection for different kinds of obstacles. By participating in this puja, one gains the protection from dangers of fire, water, weapons, poisons, malediction, untoward accidents and untimely death. It also pacifies the chances of epidemics, harmful spells, contagious diseases, conflicts and wars. In addition, we also receive the benefit and protective care of a myriad of divine guardians and goddesses.

Origin of White Umbrella Goddess
Asuras and gods reside in the region between the God and Demi-God realm (within samsara). There naturally grows a wish-fulfilling tree – whenever the gods run into any difficulty, they would pray to this tree and their wishes will be fulfilled. This has however, incurred the wrath and jealously of the Asuras, and in a fit of hatred, raged attack towards the god realm. Not wanting to suffer defeat, the King of the God realm quickly approached Lord Buddha Shakyamuni to seek His blessings. At that moment, there shone a bright white light from the crown of the Lord Buddha. And it manifested into the intrepid and powerful White Umbrella Tara. With the pure merits of Lord Buddha, the White Umbrella Tara emanates a thousand arms and a thousand eyes, blessing and saving all the harm of the gods.

The White Umbrella Goddess is an intrepid and fearless deity. Through her practice, one can prevent the influence of any evil magic or spirits, as well as the attack or harassment of the formless, and help increase fortune, wisdom and longevity.

For a long time many devotees have been requesting for the initiation of this powerful practice, we are deeply grateful to Rinpoche and very happy to be able to make it available for everyone this time.

“This is not a common puja, it is one of the biggest pujas in Tibetan Buddhism. There are 30 over specific ingredients required for this puja, which are special offerings to 30 over different deities. Everyone has his own favourite food, and if I give you what you enjoy most, you will be very pleased. So in the same way, the elaborate offerings are the favorite of each individual deity. And each deity helps to clear us of one particular type of obstacle. This puja is very effective in clearing us of very big obstacles.”
- Geshe Lharampa Lobsang Chodar

Leng Chag Torma Puja
25/01/13 (Friday), 3.00pm to 5.00pm

This puja is specially to repay karmic debts of past lifetimes, preventing/resolving supernatural harrassments.

Since beginningless time, we have been trapped in this uncontrolled cyclic existence of samsara, and have undergone countless reincarnations. Although we are unable to recall what we did in our previous lives, it is certain that we must have committed many acts of greed and hatred out of our ignorance - which explains why we are still unable to be liberated from samsara. It is also certain that we must have accumulated many debts in all these lifetimes, ie. we could have owed someone a sum of money, or even a mere sack of rice, or in serious cases, we could have harmed others or caused their deaths.

When we do not repay such debts and they accumulate, our creditors may one day return to seek revenge against us, especially during times when we are experiencing low luck. They can cause us various obstacles, from illnesses to problems at work, sleepless nights, nothing seems to go smooth, or in worse scenarios, could be even fatal. Through the performance of this Leng Chag Torma Puja - by offering torma (ritual cake offerings) to the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and Protectors, and together with the immaculate blessings by the Holy Speech of the Buddha’s texts, we purify the negative karma that we have accumulated over the reincarnations and pay off these incurred debts.

Heart-Sutra Demon-Subduing Grand Puja
26/01/13 (Friday), 10.30am to 12.30pm

This is the first time that this puja is performed. This Heart-Sutra Demon-Subduing Grand Puja is a special ritual, more powerful than the usual Obstacle-Clearing Puja that we do.

Heart Sutra Puja is one of the most effective and largest scale pujas in Tibetan Buddhism. It is performed by chanting the Heart Sutra, eliminating all negative forces and hindrances which may arise from our negative actions. The Heart Sutra is the essence of Buddha’s teachings. Due to the ignorance which leads them into committing acts of greed, sentient being are trapped within the cyclic existence of samsara. To rid ignorance and gain liberation, one must contemplate on emptiness. The scriptures mentioned - if one is able to contemplate and chant prayers on emptiness, it will be the most effective way to clear obstacles.

This Heart Sutra Demon-subduing grand puja was originally passed from Buddha Shakyamuni to Avalokitesvara, then later passed down further to Lama Atisha. Ultimately it was written down by one of the very eminent ancient lama (Kyi Jhang Aughar) and hence today we are able to conduct and participate in this rare puja.

Scriptures record that Heart Sutra instantly clears the obstacles of the past and present, and also prevents future impending obstacles. Here is the list of some obstacles that can be prevented by Heart Sutra and this puja:
1. Prevents from harm of black practices and evil curses
2. Prevents from harm of black magic (such as black magic being done by evil chants and hiding one’s material underground for harmful purposes)
3. Prevents rise of epidemic in the country
4. Prevent the decease of animals, or loss of assets
5. Prevents from the harm of king towards one’s family
6. Prevents from death on a bad day
7. Prevents from accusation without doing any crime
8. Prevents from the loss or destruction of wealth

“During the puja, visualize all your obstacles & negativity of your past & present lives are being taken away by the substitute figurine. Throw away your shirt which takes away your physical pain, and generate in your mind infinite food and money offerings to offer to all your debtors. Once the substitute is being sent out, think you have no more relationship with all these supernatural beings, and all your obstacles are ceased.”
- Geshe Lobsang Chodar, 45

Dorje Namjom
Dorje Namjom (Vajravidaran) Blessing Initiation
25/01/13 (Friday), 3.00pm to 5.00pm

Dorje Namjom (Vajravidaran) Healing Cleansing Grand Puja
26/01/13 (Saturday), 7.30pm to 9.30pm

In the past this practice was secret, and was not simply passed down. Hence this was a special ritual whereby many practitioners had to undergo a lot and pass through many tests by the Teacher before they were bestowed upon with this practice. There were many adepts in Tibet who achieved through this practice of Dorje Namjom. In the past and also now, many masters would mostly confer this practice as blessing to those who were seriously ill, possessed by spirits, or those who were mentally unstable. This practice is able to remove obstacles of illness, demonic obstacles, bad luck, and evil energy etc. This practice is also performed especially for those who were ill, had impure bodies, negative energy, and during occasions when they experienced obstacles in their dharma practices.

The effect of negative energy: One feels discomfort in the body, things do not go smoothly, unhappy mood, and falls ills easily.

The cause of negative energy:
·    - Being in company with those who transgress their samaya, bodhisattva vows
·    - Being in company with those whose occupation engages in killing ie. butcher, hunter
·    - Used the things which have been used by others who possess negative energy, ie. bowls or clothes, or 2nd hand items.

Symptoms that one is affected by negative energy:
- Mind falls into depression or gets frustrated easily 
- Falls ill easily
- Things do not go smoothly
-  Feels drowsy and lethargic
-  Headaches
-  Vision is blurred and hearing is unclear
-  Sense of smell is not sharp, tongue is unable to taste

Methods of removing negative energy:
·   Cleansing pujas / smoke incense offering pujas for purification and removal of obstacles.

“Vajravidaran is the Supreme Destroyer, a specialized healing & cleansing deity of esoteric Buddhism. It is very powerful in cleaning body, speech and mind of living beings from all the possible spiritual and material contaminants. For millennium great Tibetan yogis lived long, healthy and prosperous life by relying on the practice of Vajravidaran. Through infinite power of Vajravidaran one can benefit self and others by purifying body, speech and mind from impurities.

This healing ritual target to clean impurities besides eliminating the influence of external obstructions caused by imbalance in nature, unfavorable stars, planets and zodiac signs etc. After the cleaning and eliminating the impurities, a diamond shield protection is created, which protects the subject from similar kind of influences in future.

With the power of Mantra, Mudra and Samadhi the supreme power of Vajravidaran are activated and directed to benefit the subject. Benefit of the ritual will be felt mentally, physically and emotionally. The ritual contributes greatly to harness positive energy, and increase mental and physical faculties.”

– H.E. Khen Rinpoche Jangchup Choeden (Abbot of Gaden Shartse Monastery)

Namtose Great Wealth-Congregating & Fortune Blessing Grand Puja
27/01/13 (Sun) 3:00pm to 5.00pm

Namtose Wealth Blessing Initiation
27/01/13 (Sun) 7:30pm to 9.30pm

In Buddhism, fortune and wealth refers to ‘merit’ - because everything good that we possess is established from merit. Every form of success, every piece of happiness, every kind of enjoyment can only be materialized should there be enough merit to support it. To have merit means to have wealth and assets; if there is no or insufficient merit, then one encounters many negative conditions and obstacles. Even in the Buddhist path, you also need to practise and fulfil both merit accumulation as well as karma purification to be able to attain Bodhicitta.

Namtose, also known as Vaisravana, is a famous protector and wealth deity of Esoteric Buddhism. Namtose is one of them The Four Great Kings who have promised Buddha Shakyamuni to preserve and protect the teachings of Buddha. They are regarded as authentic Dharma Protectors since the time of Lord Buddha.

Even though he has achieved supreme Enlightenment since infinite aeons before, he manifested himself as a Bodhisattva with the aim of helping others overcome poverty and misery. For centuries, great Buddhist practitioners and yogis relied on his practice for wealth, protection and cultivation of the path. Practitioners should generate the altruistic intention of compassion (Bodhicitta), and practice generosity. This practice can remove poverty within the six realms, and increase one’s merits, wisdom and lifespan. All their material and spiritual needs will be met.

The Namtose wealth grand puja summons immense positive wealth energies upon the puja participants, and is a very effective method to invoke positive wealth energy of the universe and its inhabitants. Though getting rich is a result of one’s past actions, participating in such wealth-congregating pujas play a significant role in its own way to change the course of one’s financial situation. With a sincere motivation to accumulate merit, purify our negative karma, as well as make prayers for all sentient beings to be freed from all poverty and all sufferings, without doubt - one will certainly receive the vast blessings and protection of Namtose.

Five Protectors Blessings Grand Puja 

27/01/13 (Sunday), 10.30am to 12.30pm

Due to the innate differences among all sentient beings, the Buddhas manifested into various forms to suit different needs, one of such being the manifestation of wrathful Protectors, also known as Dharmapalas.

Though wrathful in appearance, Protectors are actually full of compassion and loving kindness for all beings who are trapped within this uncontrolled cyclic existence of sufferings. Protectors manifest a wrathful form towards the three poisons (greed, hatred, ignorance) and all other negativities of sentient beings. Their fierce appearances instill terror in evil spirits and also serve to remind us of the violence and ugliness of the three poisons prevalent in all of us.
5 Dharma Protectors: Mahakala, Kalarupa, Palden Lhamo, Namtose, Setrap

The main functions of a Protector are to avert the inner and outer obstacles that prevent practitioners from gaining spiritual realizations, and to arrange all the necessary conditions for their practice. Due to the ripening of our negative karma accumulated previously, various obstacles will arise to hinder us. Protectors utilize the most immediate means to prevent the most immediate troubles. When one is practicing Dharma well, Protectors will follow closely, blessing and guiding you wherever you are.

  1. Mahakala is the fierce and powerful manifestation of Chenrezig (Kuan Yin). His six arms symbolize the completion of the six perfections - generosity, patience, morality, diligence, meditation and wisdom; and he has the ability to liberate sentient beings of the six realms.
  1. Kalarupa is one of the entourage of Yamantaka, can dispel inauspiciousness, eradicate obstacles and fulfill wishes. The puja of Kalarupa is an extremely powerful prayer for removing karmic obstacles as well as dispelling bad, harmful spirits.
  1. Palden Lhamo is the only female among the most major Dharampalas. Apart from being able to subdue all sorts of demons, Palden Lhamo is also a wish-fulfilling Protector who can accomplish all temporal and ultimate wishes of sentient beings. She is the special Protector of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and their government in Lhasa.
  1. Namtose is the wish-fulfilling jewel of all Dharma Protectors. Apart from being a Dharmapala, he is also a major Wealth deity, whose practice is very effective in invoking immense positive wealth energies of the universe.
  1. Setrap is a wrathful emanation of Buddha Amitabha, and was the great Protector who successfully guarded and brought the Prajnaparamita and Pramanavartika teachings from India into Tibet. He is also the special Protector of our mother monastery - Gaden Shartse Monastery.

Participating in this puja and making offerings to the Three Jewels, as well as all the Protectors of the universe, helps to invoke their blessings and appeals for their timely assistance. With divine protection and blessings, obstacles are cleared, positive conditions in various aspects of our life, such as career, family and relationships can also improve.

17 monks from Gaden Shartse Monastery including 4 Geshes will be conducting the powerful pujas.
Grand Puja to be graced by His Eminence Dagyab Kyabgoen Rinpoche and 17 monks

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