His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Thiksey
Agosto 14th, 2016 by admin

hh-islHis Holiness the Dalai Lama Visiting a Nunnery and Mosque at Thiksey As Well As Lamdon Model School in Shey

Thiksey, Ladakh, J&K, India, 12 August 2016 – Before leaving Thiksey, His Holiness the Dalai Lama visited Gaden Chhatnyanling Nunnery at Nyarma, about one kilometre south of Thiksey Monastery. On the way there he stopped to visit the ruins of temples and stupas that were part of a monastery built in the 11th century by Lotsawa Rinchen Zangpo, the renowned Tibetan translator. When His Holiness briefly visited the Temple of Vairochana, he was informed that people gather there periodically to perform prayers and hold discussions about Buddhism. He advised them that, since the place had been blessed by the presence of Rinchen Zangpo, it would be good to uphold his legacy by holding such discussions and reading the 16 volumes of the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras at least once a year. This, he said, would create an auspicious atmosphere in the locality and serve to avert obstacles. On the steps of the temple as he was leaving he stressed this again: “Although I am 81 years old, I still consider myself a student and read and reflect on the scriptures whenever I can. You would do well to do likewise.”

His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaking at Gaden Chhatnyanling Nunnery in Nyarma, Ladakh, J&K, India on August 11, 2016. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL

Reaching the Gaden Chhatnyanling Nunnery, which is headed by Thiksey Rinpoche, His Holiness was received by senior nuns who escorted him into their chapel where he paid his respects and sat down to talk to them.  Recalling Rinchen Zangpo’s efforts to educate the people of the locality he said: “For more than a thousand years, the Three Collections of the Buddha’s teachings which comprise Discipline, Discourses and Higher Knowledge and deal with the Three Higher Trainings in morality, concentration and wisdom, have been cherished in this region. Now that you have a nunnery here you nuns must take the opportunity to study the teachings too.”
Noting that nuns from Tibet and the trans-Himalayan regions have recently reached such proficiency in their studies that they will qualify for the Geshe degree, His Holiness said,
“Many years ago, I urged our nunneries in exile to introduce the study of Buddhist philosophy. Later this year, nuns who have successfully followed the course of study are going to receive the Geshe-ma Degree. I urge you too to study the classic treatises.”
His Holiness concluded by giving the transmission of the mantra of Manjushri. He explained that praying to Manjushri and reciting his mantra serves as a catalyst to increase our wisdom, but the principal factor is to study the teachings and exercise our intelligence.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaking to members of the Muslim community at the Shia Mosque in Thiksey, Ladakh, J&K, India on August 11, 2016. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL

At the Shia Mosque at Rambirpura colony of Thiksey, His Holiness was welcomed by members of the Muslim Religious and Cultural Society. Once everyone had sat down and welcoming words had been said, His Holiness responded: “It’s an honour for me to visit your community here—thank you for the invitation.”
His Holiness spoke about the religious harmony he has observed in India, particularly in Ladakh, where the good relations between Muslim and Buddhist communities are exemplary. He urged however that this cordiality should not be confined to Ladakh but spread to the rest of the country and the world at large, to Arab countries in particular. His Holiness explained that since the September 11th tragedy in the US, he has been an outspoken defender of Islam, concerned to dispel the distorted view of a “clash between Islam and the West”. He has urged his Muslim friends in Ladakh to create a movement to building interreligious harmony. He assured them:
“If you start such a movement, I am available to join you,” adding, “just as I join you in putting on the taqiyah, (the Muslim skull cap). We need to work to open people’s hearts to the existence today of many religions in the world and their need to live together in fellowship.” His Holiness also recommended examining accepted customs and practices to weed out those that are out of date.
His Holiness answered several questions from the audience, thanked his hosts and left for Champa Camp near Thiksey Monastery. After lunch, he drove to the Lamdon Model School (LMS) in Shey that was started by the Chief Executive Councillor of the Ladakh Hill Council. As he walked to the dais Ladakhi ladies on both sides of the path sang traditional welcoming songs. Students recited a prayer to Manjushri followed by his mantra and then sang the Indian National Anthem.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama greeting student and members of the local community gathered to hear him speak at Lamdon Model School in Shey, Ladakh, J&K, India on August 11, 2016. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL

The Chief Executive Councillor of the Ladakh Hill Council explained how the school had been founded as a branch the Lamdon Model School, Leh and that it had been a long standing wish that His Holiness would visit. He said the whole school was honoured by his presence.
In his response, His Holiness focussed on the line from the prayer to Manjushri the students had recited, which says, “I bow to you, Manjugosha, who dispels the darkness in my mind.” He said it is our lack of knowledge, the ‘darkness’ of ignorance that must be overcome by knowledge and wisdom. He told the audience that he had earlier signed a portrait of himself – proponent of Buddhist philosophical tenets – to remind the students that they need to study Buddhist philosophy in addition to their standard education.
“Wisdom will not come about merely by reciting prayers but by studying well”, he advised them.
His Holiness thanked all those present and returned to his residence at Shiwatsel Phodrang.

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