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His Holiness in West Bengal - 2006 Tour schedule

(Photo Index to other galleries of the photos of HH Karmapa's activities)

His Holiness began his Fall-Winter 2006 tour in Mirik, West Bengal. On October 31, His Holiness left Gyuto Tantric University with Gyaltsab Rinpoche and his entourage, first traveling to Chandigarh for a lunch with a goverment official, AGDP Joti. After an brief stay in Delhi, His Holiness on November 2, 2006, flew to Bagdogra Airport in Siliguri, West Bengal, en route to Bokar Ngedon Chokhorling Monastery, where he is presiding over the third parinirvana anniversary ceremonies of the Very Venerable Bokar Rinpoche. (text continues below slideshow)

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Numerous government, monastic and lay officials and representatives, as well as some 1000 disciples, received His Holiiness at the Bagdogra airport. His reception at the airport included the following dignitaries:

  1. Shri Namkha Gyaltshen, Advisor to the Govt. of Sikkim – Ecclesiastical Affairs – Representative Govt. of Sikkim.
  2. Shri Tenzing Gelek Rinpoche, Special Secretary, Ecclesiastical Affairs – Representative Govt. of Sikkim
  3. Welfare Officer, Dist Darjeeling – Representative Govt. of Tibet in Exile
  4. Welfare Officer, Gangtok, Sikkim – Representative Govt of Tibet in Exile
  5. Venerable Ringu Tulku, Naropa Institute, Gangtok, Sikkim
  6. Venerable Drikung Gyaltshey Tulku, Gangtok, Sikkim
  7. Shri Densapa, Director National Institute of Tibetology.
  8. Shri K Gurudakla – General Secretary, Sikkim Buddhist Duechen Organisation
  9. Mr. Palden Tshering – Dy General Secretary Joint Action Committee of Sikkim.
  10. Mrs Sangay Doma President Machig Rimed Choe Chogs ( Women's Buddhist Association )
  11. Monk Representatives from, Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre, Phodong Monastery, Ralong Palchen Choeling Monastery, Sang Monastery, Dali Gumpa
  12. Mr. Sherab Tharchin ATPD Kagyu candidate.

From the airport, His Holiness proceeded to Mirik.

October 31- November 6

He began teachings on November 3 on the Guru Yoga in Four Sessions (thun bzhi), and also began a course of receiving transmissions from other lineage holders, such as HE Gyaltsab Rinpoche. He also gave teachings to the three year retreatants and in the early morning even had time to visit a nearby view point on a hill top, just a kilometer away from the monastery along with H.E Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche and Khenpo Lodro Donyo Rinpoche, Abbot of Bokar Monastery. - Tashi Paljor

November 7-9

His Holiness Karmapa's Fall-Winter 2006 tour is continuing in Mirik. On the morning of November 8, 2006, at the Bokar Ngedon Choekhor Ling Monastery in Mirik, West Bengal, hundreds of international students gathered to listen to His Holiness Karmapa give teachings on the essential points of Guru Yoga and Mahamudra. Simultaneously, outside the teachings hall, a large rainbow appeared above the mid-morning sun.

While His Holiness continued to offer blessings to the long line of devotees in the afternoon, His Eminence Gyaltsab Rinpoche elaborated on Mahamudra, pointing out the significance of the Buddha's teachings on the nature of mind. After the teaching, His Eminence graciously offered the Vajrakilaya empowerment for the international community.

On November 9, 2006, His Holiness Karmapa arrived early in the morning at a local scenic viewpoint to catch a view of majestic Kanchenjunga. Afterward, His Holiness continued his teaching on Guru Yoga during the morning teaching session. In the afternoon, His Holiness Karmapa, Gyaltsab Rinpoche and Khenpo Lodro Donyo Rinpoche performed the consecration ritual for Venerable Bokar Rinpoche's Stupa. Gyaltsab Rinpoche concluded his teachings on Mahamudra, Buddha nature and Bodhicitta. - Tashi Paljor

November 10

On Friday, November 10, 2006, Bokar Ngedon Choekhar Ling held Cheme Phagme Nyingthig Long Life prayers for His Holiness Karmapa in the main hall.  His Holiness continued to preside over the consecration of Bokar Rinpoche’s Stupa with the Kalachakra puja while Khenpo Donyo Rinpoche gave a teaching on the Namtar, the life story of the great Master Bokar Rinpoche to the international sangha.

November 13

On Monday November 13, 2006, His Holiness Gyalwa Karmapa received Mandala Offerings from Bokar Ngedon Choekor Ling. The procession of offerings included a mandala of precious substances, sacred texts, robes, numerous statues of the Buddhas, offering bowls and vases, and Tsok (sacral feast offering). Both the monastic and the lay sangha gathered to celebrate the offerings made to His Holiness, including Gyaltsab Rinpoche, Payu Tulku Rinpoche, Drupon Rinpoche, as well as monks from various monasteries who arrived earlier to pray during the four day consecration ceremony for Bokar Rinpoche's stupa. In the afternoon, His Holiness met with the international students to share personal stories of the Venerable Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche. - Tashi Paljor

November 16

In the morning of November 16th, the Karmapa departed Bokar Ngedhon Chokorling Monastery for Kalu Rinpoche’s Chorten in Salugara, where he received a rousing welcome from more than three thousand devotees. The monastery welcomed his Holiness with the traditional “Serbang” reception and auspicious Lion Dance (Singhi Chaam). The devotees had waited in line for more than two hours along the National Highway 31A  in Salugara, a town at the outskirts of Siliguri City West Bengal. This is also the main highway and artery to the Himalayan State of Sikkim which houses the renowned Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre, the main seat in India of his Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje.

His Holiness later bestowed the Green Tara Empowerment to thousands from Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Sikkim, and numerous Bhutanese and Nepali Buddhists at the Kalachakra Monastery in Salugara. At 1.00 pm His Holiness reached the Phodang at Salugara, the venue for bestowing the Abhisheka / Initiation (Long Life Empowerment- Tsewang ) to the general public.  Braving the midday heat and dust, more than 14000 devotees from West Bengal, Sikkim, Nepal and Bhutan had gathered to receive blessings from His Holiness. The entire atmosphere was reminiscent of the Kalchakra Pujas held by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in the same venue in 1996.

Upon arrival His Holiness was first escorted to the main shrine hall in the Phodang where a Long Life Mandala Offering was made to him by representatives of the Himalayan Buddhist & Cultural Association, an organization representing members throughout the entire belt of the Himalayan Range. Thereafter His Holiness bestowed the Abhisheka Initiation (Tsewang) to the gathering interspersed with very eloquent teachings on the merits of performing good deeds, and generating good thoughts, as well as the advantage of practicing the Buddha Dharma.  The Pujas concluded after two hours and thereafter His Holiness continued to hold an audience with the large gathering which had gathered at the Chorten. - Karma Woser Rapten

November 17, 2006

In the early morning, the sangha from the monastery made the long-life mandala offering to His Holiness followed by an offering of khatas and a mandala from the monks and lay devotees. His Holiness left Droden Kunchab Chodey around 12: 30 noon and visited Sed-Gyud Buddhist Monastery, a monastery in the Gelugpa tradition. After a ceremonial welcome reception, the chief abbot made a mandala offering to His Holiness. The sangha chanted long life prayers for the Karmapa and ceremonial rice and tea were served to the gathering. His Holiness also made a brief  visit to surrounding Buddhist center and stupas, where he consecrated various stupas. After a short visit to Men-Tsee Khang (home to Tibetan Medical and Astor Institute of the Exile Govt. of Tibet), His Holiness left for Bagdora Airport. His Holiness stopped at New Delhi for two days and then continued on to Varanasi and Sarnath. Click here for a summary of His Holiness activities in Sarnath.

- Tashi Paljor

Schedule

The overall schedule follows; embedded within are links to the daily public schedules, as they become available:

HH Karmapa's Schedule:
November 2006 - January 2007

2.11.2006 Bokar Ngedon Chokhor Ling (Mirik) for 3rd Parinirvana anniversary of VV Bokar Rinpoche (public schedule)
16.11.2006 Kalu Rinpoche's Monastery (Siliguri) (public schedule)
19.11.2006 Vajra Vidhya Institute (Sarnath)
20.12.2006 Terga Monastery (Bodhgaya)
   6.1.2007 Vajra Vidhya Institute (Sarnath)
  10.1.2007 Return to Gyuto Monastery in Dharamsala