Dearest Friends @ CAS,
We are back after slightly more than a month's absence, thanks and no thanks to sheer indolence, indulgent complacencies and mainly, slapping work !!
Thanks to arrival of the block of Chinese New Year holiday, we are here able to give, and give a lot indeed ( !! ), in our happy first issue in 2011.
You will see the Dalai Lama honoured by both Christians and Muslims, ( ecumenism and sensible neighbourliness lives ), 6 chapters of things to REJOICE to the end of time, holy pics, monks battling tigers and what not. 
INFINITE blessings from the Holy Mother Tara !!
bb & other happy people @ CAS & Phuntsok Choling
the GREETINGS section !!
尊敬的 bb & Friends @ CAS,   
Khenchen Rinpoche
( Drepung Loseling - India )
the GIFT section !!
Kyabje Penor Rinpoche in front of Lord Buddha
Our gift for the new Tibetan and Chinese New Year of the Rabbit: 
A night of precious teaching on Bardo in London, by one of CAS's precious Teachers, the late Head of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism, Kyabje Penor Rinpoche.
It is available 24 hrs on CAS's "Video on Demand" at
An apt supplement to this precious video is the Bodhisattva vow composed by one of Kyabje Penor Rinpoche's most trusted disciple, the current manifestation of the co-founder of the Nyingma Palyul tradition, Jetsunma Akhon Lhamo.
Here is the full text of Jetsunma Akhon Lhamo’s Bodhisattva Vow:

I dedicate myself to the liberation and salvation of all sentient beings. I offer my body, speech, and mind in order to accomplish the purpose of all sentient beings. I will return in whatever form necessary, under extraordinary circumstances, to end suffering. Let me be born in times unpredictable, in places unknown, until all sentient beings are liberated from the cycle of death and rebirth.

Taking no thought for my comfort or safety, precious Lama (Buddha), make of me a pure and perfect instrument by which the end of suffering and death in all forms might be realized. Let me achieve perfect enlightenment for the sake of all beings. And then, by my hand and heart alone, may all beings achieve full enlightenment and perfect liberation.

By this effort may all sentient beings be free of suffering.
the REJOICE section !!
His Eminence Garchen Triptul Rinpoche
The gods are partying and popping more than a few corks as the incomparably precious Garchen Triptul Rinpoche, the Root Teacher of the Drikung Kyabgon and almost everyone of the Drikung Kagyu school, has decided to stay on in our world after deliberately manifesting ( very ) bad gallstones, in another skilful bid to urge His students to "strive on with diligence for Liberation" ( quoting Lord Buddha before His own Great Nirvana ):
"Dear Friends, if you haven't heard already, Garchen Rinpoche's surgery went well. His very big gallstone was removed successfully and Rinpoche is back resting at the centre. Tara's blessings !!" ( courtesy of US students via Shu Lian ).
One aside:
Garchen Rinpoche had told us at Camden Education Center ( CAS's education centre ) in 2009, that we would have a Dharma centre within a year while we shook our heads in disbelief, when 6 months later, our benefactor from Malacca offered us a two storey building and last year, Kyabje Trulshig Rinpoche, the present Nyingma Head, named it "Phuntsok Choling" ( Centre of the Perfection of Dharma ).
This is, what we believe, a sign of a true Master's transcendence of time and samsara's lousy little minds !! 
the REJOICE section ( 2nd time )
CAS has, since 1993, supported the holy sangha in their studies and retreats. This year, we continue with our offerings to our more than 18 monks in life-long retreat in the hills of Dharamsala ( they retreated with leopards, snow leopards and fat bears ) and our few hundred monks in Drepung Loseling, Sera Je and Drikung Kagyu.
Also, we are still very happy that our student in Dehra Dun is in her second year of her nursing course. 
Our graduated students, 2 of them now fully trained doctors and having graduated from CAS's full scholarship 3 years ago, are ( still ) gratefully treating literally hundreds of patients everyday amongst some of the poorest regions of India.
Our boy, now 23, is leading a normal young working adult's life as a computer graphic designer. We still have copies of his sketches he drew for us when he was a student.
The past years and today, we are glad to have offered for a hospital in Ladakh.  
We would not have been able to support all our Sangha and students without YOU !!
Please accept our sincerest "THANK YOU !!" for supporting CAS's projects all these years since CAS first breathed in 1995.  
Holy Tara bless our generous friends !!
Dear  Kunga Nyima la @ CAS,
We  have  received your money which you sent through Gen Karma khedup. I want to
many thanks for sending me a money and i also given the rest of money to those person
 as you written their name in letter.   
I have sent one letter to you by post and hope you will get it in some days so please 
try to help him.   
With best regards
Geshe Dakpa Samdup
Drepung Loseling Phara Khamtsen




Sera Je Trehor Khamtsen
the REJOICE section ( 3rd time ) 
Our precious Teacher, Loseling Khensur Lobsang Gyamtso, after having successfully inaugurated the great prayer hall of Drepung Loseling, has again completed a new hostel and prayer hall for His own hostel in Drepung Loseling. 
If there are sufficient response ( perhaps about 10 or more ), from all of you, we will try to arrange for a group visit.
Respected Members of Charitable Assistance Society ( CAS ),
We, the Drepung Loseling Gowo Khamtsen, relocated in India as exiles, has the rare privilege of making anouncement that we are opening our new assembly prayer hall cum monk's hostel by the Most Venerable, HE Kyabje Denma Lochoe Rinpoche, one of the foremost respected, profound and most renowned master of this era. 
Our khamtsen headed by two Venerable Khensur Rinpoches and the entire Sangha community of Drepung Loseling Gowo Khamtsen, request you to grace this auspicious occasion by your kind presence which will take place on 17 February 2011. 
With Tashi Delek !! 
Construction Committee
Loseling Gowo Khamtsen       
the REJOICE section ( 4th time )
Gyudmey Khensur Lobsang Delek
Khensur Lobsang Delek, the seniormost disciple of our late Teacher, Gyudmey Khensur Dorje Tashi,  has agreed to be resident ( at least half a year !! ) in Phuntsok Choling, CAS's Malacca centre !!
This is an unspeakable, unbelievable scenario as Rinpoche is also known as "Geshe Uma Gyukpa", literally meaning the Master of the Pinnacle of the Great Madhyamika, who teaches almost everyone of the 5,000 monks in Sera Je !!
CAS & Phuntsok Choling could die of impossible honour given that Sera Je will now lose one of their truly foremost monastic masters to undeserving students here !!
This will never be possible if not for our late Teacher, Khensur Dorje Tashi: "Rinpoche, always and forever our gratitude !!"
Many details need to be ironed out perfectly, including the renovation, the visas, the translator etc. Let's pray and hope that our good karma is seriously strong enough to host this one of Gelugpa's seniormost lineage-holder.




the REJOICE section ( 5th time )
Thanz for articles u sent:)
John Ng
the REJOICE section ( 6th time )

Khenpo Konchok Rangdol
(Principal Kagyu College)

Kagyu College
P.O. Kulhan
Sahastradhara Road,
Dehra Dun-248001
(U.K.) India

Ph: +91 135 6534398
Mobile:+91 9837258952
Face book id is: Khenpo Rangdol

Bodhistupa Inauguration

Drigung Kagyud Tserkarmo Monastery

Tingmosgang Village, Ladakh


Tentative Schedule


Monday, 25 July 2011—1 August 2011

Sri Chakrasamvara practice-offering retreat (drupcho) and fire puja and reading of the whole Buddhist canon for the steadfastness of the Buddhadharma 


Monday, 01 August 2011

Arrival of H.H. the Drikung Kyabon Chetsang in Tingmosgang (from Phyang)


Tuesday, 02 August 2011

Formal consecration of the new temple and the facility based on the Sri Chakrasamvara sadhana, presided over by His Holiness


Wednesday, 3 August 2011 (Great Wheel of Dharma Day)

AM: Formal inauguration of the stupa

PM: Celebration of His Holiness’s birthday


Thursday, 04 August 2011

AM: Teachings on the Four Dharmas of Gampopa by His Holiness

PM: Presentations of cultural songs and dances


Friday, 05 August 2011

AM: Teaching and empowerment of the Fivefold Path of Mahamudra by His Holiness

PM: Teachings on the practice of Great Drikung Phowa by H.E. Togden Rinpoche


Saturday, 6 August 2011

AM: Long-Life sadhana practice by the ordained sangha, followed by the Phowa transmission by His Holiness

PM: Long-Life empowerment by His Holiness, followed by offerings and prayers for the long life of His Holiness and a public audience with him

Special Note: As August 6th is the anniversary of the flash floods in Ladakh, in the evening, His Holiness will preside over a hundred thousand ganacaka and lamp offerings, followed by aspiration and dedication prayers for those who lost their lives in this tragedy


Sunday, 7 August 2011

AM: Guru yoga ganachakra offering led by His Holiness, followed by a talk by His Holiness entitled “A Meaningful Life” for foreign disciples

PM: Picnic lunch for foreign disciples with His Holiness

the HELP section !!
Hi bb @ CAS,

Thanks to your side's assistance in raising the Dharma books for my teacher's temple. in total, we had collected about 500kg of Dharma books in Chinese and English language. We will be shipping over once the renovation have complete.

Currently, this temple's library, meditation hall and the Dharma class are starting renovation from 5th Feb 2011 to 05th March 2011, opening ceremony is on 13th March 2011.

Funds for the renovation are raising from singapore and thailand concurrently, the renovation cost is about SGD68,000, We are still raising funds until early March, if any of your members wish to donate any amount, can contact me at 96269844. Sponsor's name will be displayed in the temple's compound( Library, meditation hall or Dharma class).

WAT DUNGKHAE renovation 2011:

Taking this opportunity, I would like to share with your members, my teacher's projects in his temple where he was ordained as a monk since young and also to let your members have a updates on the library project. Thanks.

My teacher, Laung po Thamrong and Project Metta:

WAT DUNGKHAE novice monks intake 2010:

the HOLY MASTER section !!
Achariya Maha Boowa
.....  After I had finished my chants, I made my vow, the gist of which was that if my going out to meditate in line with my earlier vow would go smoothly and fulfill my aspirations, I wanted an unusual vision to appear to me, either in my meditation or in a dream. But if I wouldn't get to go out to practice, or if having gone out I'd meet with disappointment, I asked that the vision show the reason why I'd be disappointed and dissatisfied. But if my going out was to fulfill my aspirations, I asked that the vision be extraordinarily strange and amazing. With that, I sat in meditation, but no visions appeared during the long period I sat meditating, so I stopped to rest.

As soon as I fell asleep, though, I dreamed that I was floating high in the sky above a large metropolis. It wasn't Bangkok, but I don't know what metropolis it was. It stretched as far as the eye could see and was very impressive. I floated three times around the metropolis and then returned to earth. As soon as I returned to earth, I woke up. It was four a.m. I quickly got up with a feeling of fullness and contentment in my heart, because while I had been floating around the metropolis, I had seen many strange and amazing things that I can't describe to you in detail. When I woke up, I felt happy, cheerful, and very pleased with my vision, at the same time thinking to myself that my hopes were sure to be fulfilled, because never before had I seen such an amazing vision — and at the same time, it had coincided with my vow. So that night I really marveled at my vision. The next morning, after my meal, I went to take leave of the senior monk who was in charge of the monastery, and he willingly gave permission for me to go....

In May of that year, 1942, I left Nong Khai for the town of Sakon Nakhorn, and from there went on to the monastery where Ven. Acariya Mun was staying in Baan Khoak, Tong Khoam Township, Muang District, Sakon Nakhorn Province. When I reached the monastery, I found him doing walking meditation in the late evening dusk. 'Who's that?' he asked, so I told him who I was. He then left his meditation path and went to the meeting hall — he was staying in a room there in the meeting hall — and conversed with me, showing a great deal of kindness and compassion for the incredibly ignorant person who had come to seek him out. He gave me a sermon that first evening, the gist of which I'll relate to you as far as I can remember it. It's a message that remains close to my heart to this day....

I felt an immediate sense of faith and conviction in him as soon as I saw him face to face that night, both because of my conviction in the Dhamma he was so kind to teach me, and because of the assistance he gave in letting me stay under his guidance. I stayed with him with a sense of contentment hard to describe — but also with a stupidity on my own part hard to describe as well. He himself was very kind, helping me with the Dhamma every time I went to see him....

Achariya Maha Boowa intensified his efforts in meditation ( after the passing away of his teacher, Achariya Mun ) until he too became a fully enlightened Arahants, free of all defilements. He soon became a central figure in efforts to maintain continuity within the "dhutanga kamatthana" ( forest ascetic meditating monk community ) and so preserve ( his teacher ) Achriya Mun unique mode of practice for future generations.....
When ( Achariya's ) monastery was first established, there were three tigers and three leopards, that regularly came and went ... these were big cats, so how could we help but see their tracks ??
Although many devoted lay supporters will like to make merit by providing the monks with various comforts and conveniences - such as electricity, water pumps, telephones, and larger and more comfortable kutis ( meditation huts ), Venerable Achariya has refused to accept them. The reason he gives is that these things are unnecessary for a life of meditation. In worldly life, they are thought to be a source of happiness and pleasure; but from the perspective of the Buddha's teachings, such comforts are considered to be obstacles for a lifestyle of strict meditation. In the Buddha's time, they did not exist, yet monks lived very contented lives, and many became fully-enlightened Arahants. The Buddha's disciples never indulged in these things as a substitute for the Paths, Fruitions and Nibbana. ... reliance on such comforts encourages laziness, discouragement and apathy ... this attachment becomes an impediment to their search for the truth about the Dhamma and the world....  
Quoted from: & A collection of teachings of Achariya Maha Boowa:
His Majesty the King of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej offering His
devotions to Achariya Maha Boowa
I met Luangta Mahabua in February 2005, when he was 92.

The monk is perhaps best known for collecting more than 10 tonnes of gold bars and more than US$10 million in cash via donations to a public campaign to salvage Thailand's economy after the Asian financial crisis.

In my meeting with him in 2005, I remember as I approached the Wat Pa Ban Tad temple in Udon Thani, that I felt the aura of the place. The area around the temple was a bit dry and dusty, but morning light filtered through the leafy trees. The grounds and parts of the temple were being swept by devotees.
...... what I recall most of all was his presence. The strength of his personality was palpable. He struck me as the classic spiritual teacher – stern, blunt yet compassionate, engaged yet detached, and with an acerbic sense of humour.

At age 92, he sat upright and his face was still strong. I was in my late 40s then, but felt like a child in his presence.

Luangta Mahabua made an extraordinary impact on Thailand, not just in spiritual terms. After the 1997-98 financial melt down, he began collecting gold from followers to bail out the Bank of Thailand.

By August 2003, he had donated a stunning 7,726 kilos of gold and US$ 7.7 million in cash to the bank. A mid-year tally in June 2004, showed that visitors to his website alone had donated 10,312 kilos of gold and over US$10 million.....
He was regarded by his followers as a living ‘’arahant’’ or one who has attained true spiritual liberation.
Following the death of his teacher Ajarn Mun Bhuridatto, also a charismatic forest monk, Luangta Mahabua practiced in the seclusion of the forests. In 1997 he told his followers this life would be his last and he would not be born again.

I feel privileged to have been in his presence even if for only a short while.

Extracted from article by Nirmal Ghosh ( The Straits Times )
the HIGHLIGHTS section !!
Tiger & Buddha
Like our monks in life-long retreat behind the snow-capped mountains of Dharamsala, the Thai Buddhist tradition had their share of the Buddha's holy sangha, struggling for Liberation in the wild tiger infested jungles of Southeast Asia.
We offer you this:
Alone amongst the beasts of the forest, Thai Thudong monks overcome their fears. Kamala Titavanich describes a remarkable practice of awareness and positivity.

The North and North-east of Thailand where thudong monks used to wander were sparsely populated. Paved roads were few. Vast tracts of the land were covered by forests that were home to elephants, tigers, clouded leopards, black panthers, bears, wild buffaloes, boars and snakes. These animals ruled not only the wilderness but also the fears and fantasies dwelling in every monk's and villager's imagination. As Ajahn Mun told his disciples, until the monk actually faces these beasts, he will never know how much or how little he fears them....

The tiger occupies a conspicuous place in monks' accounts of their life in the forest. The monks regarded this animal with a mixture of fear and respect. Fear of tigers and the vivid imagining of oneself being devoured by tigers often drove the mind to one-pointed samadhi (concentration).

Samadhi, a thudong master explains, 'is a gathering of the mind's energies so that they have great strength, able to uproot attachments and to cleanse the mind so that it is, for the moment, bright and clear'. Any of the 40 meditation methods that the Buddha taught could, if practised seriously, bring the mind to samadhi. ....

In the early stage of his training, a monk or novice stayed with his teacher; he participated in daily rituals, received instruction, and learned by observing. During this stage the disciples depended on the teacher for inner guidance. If a monk was afraid of tigers, Ajahn Man sometimes put him deep into the forest, at some distance from the other monks....

He was defenceless except for his mind, which could fix itself on a theme of meditation or a recitation of 'Buddho' until, as Ajahn Mun said, the mind became 'absorbed in Dharma'. Ajahn Mun's theory was that at such a critical moment, strong concentration would develop or deepen, and further wisdom or insight would occur. In the battle between fear and Dharma, as Man's biographer observes, 'If the fear is defeated the mind will be overwhelmed by courage and enjoy profound inner peace. If fear is the victor, it will multiply itself rapidly and prodigiously. The whole body will be enveloped by both a perspiring heat and a chilling cold, by the desire to pass urine and to defecate. The monk will be suffocated by fear and will look more like a dying than a living man'....

.... as they were walking along a forest trail parallel to the Mekong River, Fan spotted tiger tracks and droppings, some of them recent. As dusk was falling, they heard the snarling and growling of tigers ahead and behind them. To keep calm, Fan and the novice meditated while walking but they had difficulty concentrating. They were afraid a tiger would attack at any moment.

..... He thought, 'A monk who is afraid of wild animals is not an authentic thudong monk ( meditating monks in the forest ).' He reassured his nephew: 'When we have mindfulness, the mind is at peace. It's not afraid of danger. Even if we're devoured by a tiger, we will not suffer.' As it turned out, Fan and the novice saw no tigers on this trip....

In 1925 Fan spent five days meditating alone on a mountain. One day, while walking uphill, he was startled by an unusual noise. It sounded like a big animal digging in the ground. As the thought of a tiger entered his mind, he froze. Although the encounter was sudden, Fan's quick reaction indicates his strong mindfulness:

Within seconds he concentrated his mind so it wouldn't react to the situation. The animal raised its head out of the thick brush. 'It's a tiger alright,' he thought, 'and judging from the size of its head it must be huge'. Seeing the beast he felt a chill run up his spine. Sweat broke out on his face. Intuitively he knew that if he turned his back and started running he would be killed. The tiger would certainly attack. So he focused his mind to face the critical situation calmly, even though his breathing was not as relaxed as usual. The tiger took one glance at him, gave a loud growl, and leapt into the forest.

........ Once while wandering in northern Siam, Chaup was approaching a great forest when he met some villagers who invited him to spend the night in the village and continue his journey the following morning. They warned him that the forest was large and ferocious tigers inhabited it. If he entered it that afternoon, night would catch him there. Tigers had killed travellers who had spent the night in the forest, they said. But despite their concern, Chaup insisted on going. He believed if he became a tiger's meal, then that was his karma.

Travelling alone, Chaup was able to take acute notice of his environment. He had not gone far when he came across tiger tracks and saw both fresh and old droppings everywhere. So he fixed his mind on his recitation while walking. At nightfall, when he was still in the middle of the forest, he heard two tigers growl. As they moved nearer their roars became deafening. Suddenly a tiger emerged on the trail walking toward him. Chaup stopped, turned, and saw another tiger approaching from behind. Each moved to within two metres of him. They were the biggest tigers he had ever seen. Each of them looked as big as a horse, its head about 40 centimetres wide. Seeing no way out, Chaup stood motionless, his feet frozen, thinking this was to be his end.

At that critical moment, mindfulness came to his rescue. Determined not to abandon mindfulness even though he might be killed, his mind withdrew from the tigers, dwelt within, and became one-pointed. Intuitively Chaup then knew that the tigers could never kill him. In an instant he was oblivious to the tigers, to his body, and to everything around him. His mind withdrew completely into a deep concentration and remained there for several hours. When he emerged from his samadhi, he found himself standing on the same spot, with the klot on one shoulder and the alms-bowl in its sling across another shoulder; the lantern was still in one hand but the candle long since out. He lit another candle, but no tigers were to be seen. The forest was quiet.

Chaup was surprised that he was still in one piece, untouched by the tigers. His mind was filled with courage and compassion. 'He felt that he would be able to face hundreds of tigers, now that he knew the power of the mind. He felt great love for those two tigers, who were really friends in disguise, for having "lifted" him to the Dharma and for helping him to realise its wonders.' Chaup's life may have been saved by his ability to concentrate deeply, which allowed him to stand still for several hours.

.... The experiences of these thudong monks who survived in the wilderness confirmed their belief in the power of the Dharma. As Achariya Mun told his disciples, 'From such a mind an attacker will draw back, be it a tiger, a snake, or an elephant. The aspirant may even be able to walk right up to it. His attitude toward animals is based on metta (loving- kindness), which has a mysterious but real and profound influence. It is true that animals do not know this, but they can feel and sense it. This is the power of Dharma which gives protection to the aspirant, meanwhile softening or neutralising the ferocity of the animals. This is the mysterious power of mind, which is self-evident but is still difficult for others to realise who have not yet developed to the same level.'

Dangerous animals seem to have an inexplicable forbearance toward forest monks. The monks themselves were often surprised that wild beasts, supposedly fierce, did not harm them. In Phuang's view, 'Tigers never attack thudong monks. Often a tiger will just stalk past a klot or quietly lie down beside it, so close that the monk can hear its heavy breathing. The tiger simply ignores the monk.'

To ordinary people, the practices adopted by thudong monks might seem unnecessarily risky, but from their teacher's perspective living in the forest was indispensable to spiritual liberation. The monks' belief in the merit of their thudong practice set them apart from those who followed the scholarly path urged by the monastic authorities in Bangkok. It led them to accept risks willingly, even the risk of death. As Man told his disciples: 'The Dharma is on the other side of death. Without crossing that threshold there can be no hope of realising that Dharma.'

Extracted from 'Forest Recollections' by Kamala Tiyavanich, published by University of Hawai'i Press


the DALAI LAMA section !!


His Holiness the Dalai Lama honoured for iconic contribution to peace, social justice 

19 November 2010

New Delhi: His Holiness the Dalai Lama was honoured with the Mother Teresa Memorial International Award for Social Justice by the Harmony Foundation at a ceremony held at the Taj Mahal Hotel yesterday.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Abraham Mathai, president of Harmony Foundation and Vice Chairman of State Minorities Commission, Government of Maharashtra said the Award honours His Holiness as “a living legend, a worldwide icon of conscience, a voice clearly heard over the din of conflicting values, and as a global voice for peace and social justice.”

In his acceptance speech, His Holiness recalled his first visit to Mother Teresa’s center in Calcutta where he said he was touched by the spirit of Mother Teresa which was still alive even in her absence. “And that’s very important because even if she’s not there, her followers are still fully committed in continuing her legacy in serving the poor and the destitute,” His Holiness said.

His Holiness said all major religions have the same potential to cultivate and strengthen human values such as compassion, forgiveness, and tolerance. Mother Teresa, His Holiness said, was a Catholic nun whose inner strength came from her Christian faith. Faith not only brings individual well-being but also the willingness to serve others, His Holiness added.

Speaking on the importance of cultivating inner values, His Holiness said material values have its own limitations as it provides only physical comfort. But a calm and compassionate mind brings inner well-being.

His Holiness said by and large many religious traditions have peacefully coexisted in India which he said was due to ancient Indian traditions of religious harmony and Ahimsa (non-violence). Arguments and debates happen between different viewpoints but that’s understandable, His Holiness said.    

His Holiness expressed his admiration for other award winners of the day saying their selfless and tireless commitment and dedication towards bringing justice and securing rights of the less privileged will go a long way in bringing development and change in India. But real transformation, His Holiness said, should begin from rural communities in India.

The award was presented to His Holiness by two representatives from the Kolkata-based Sisters of Missionary, and actress Rani Mukherjee who said she felt extremely privileged to be in the same room as His Holiness as “only a chosen few get blessed by His Holiness.”

The Harmony Foundation also honoured a host of other NGOs and individuals for their contribution toward peace, tolerance, equality, and social justice. Among them were Aruna Roy and her organisation Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan for Right to Information and empowerment of women and rural poor; Roy was a prominent leader of the Right to Information (RTI) movement which led to the enactment of the RTI Act in 2005.

Mr Colin Gonsalves, a senior advocate of Supreme Court of India for legal aid in addressing human rights;  Sewa Ashram, an NGO for their work amongst the homeless destitute in Delhi; Dr Udit raj for Dalit empowerment and emancipation; Mr Y.P. Singh for his campaign against corruption in upper echelons of public service especially in the police and income tax departments; Ms Sumaira Abdulali for advocacy on noise pollution and environment. And Sayed Iqbal Haider, a former senator, federal minister of law and former attorney general of Pakistan was honoured for his activism in human rights.

Luminaries from the public life who attended the award ceremony included Justice J S Verma, former Chief Justice of India and Chairman of National Human Rights Commission; GVG Krishnamurthy, former Chief Election Commissioner; Dr T Sangliani, vice chairman of the National Commission for Minorities; Members of Parliament Milind Deora, Jose K Mani, Dr B Mungekar and Sanjay Patil; Tushar Gandhi, great grandson of Mahatma Gandhi; and Swami Agnivesh.

International guests at the awards included H.E. Mr Ahmad Tariq Karim, High Commissioner for Bangladesh; H E Mrs Khadija Radman Mohammed Ghanem, Ambassador for Yemen; Deputy head of delegation of the EU, Mr Pavel Svitil; Deputy Chief of Mission for Germany, Mr Christian-Mathias Schlaga; Deputy Head of Mission for Austria, Mr Raimund Magis of Austria; and Secretary Nathanael Silva of Brazil. Indian film director and noted human rights voice Mahesh Bhatt was also present.

 Jamia Millia Islamia honours His Holiness the Dalai Lama with Doctorate degree
24 November 2010

New Delhi: His Holiness the Dalai Lama was conferred the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters (Honoris Causa) by Jamia Millia Islamia, a prestigious national university at its annual convocation ceremony held on the lawns of Dr M A Ansari auditorium on the university campus on Tuesday.

The chief guest on the occasion, Mr Kapil Sibal, Union Minister of Human Resource Development and Mr Najeeb Jung, Vice-Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia conferred the degree on His Holiness at a function attended by thousands of graduating students, faculty staff, and other eminent personalities.

The citation reads, “Jamia Millia Islamia honors His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet, one of the most respected figures and teachers of our times, who stands for rationality, humanism, non-violence, peace and universal benevolence, with the degree of Doctor of Letters.”

The citation further notes that His Holiness’ “message of compassion, altruism and peace has made him a statesman of our troubled times,” and adds that His Holiness “has led the Tibetan refugees in a remarkable success story where even after more than 50 years in exile, the [Tibetan] community has been able to retain its unique identity and remain welcome by their hosts.”

In his remarks, His Holiness said he felt extremely honored to receive a Doctorate degree from a well-known Muslim university in India adding one of his two commitments is to promote religious harmony among different religious traditions. His Holiness said Islam is one the most important world religious traditions that provides hope and inspiration to millions of its followers.

When the 9/11 incident happened in New York, he said he stood firmly in defence of Islam because he believed it was “absolutely wrong” to view all Muslims through the acts of a few mischievous people. “And a few mischievous people creating trouble is always there in any religious tradition whether Muslim, Hindu, or even Buddhists,” His Holiness said.

In Lhasa, a small Muslim community who first came to Tibet as traders co-existed peacefully with the dominant Tibetan Buddhist community for centuries, His Holiness said. “There is no record of Muslims fighting with Tibetans in Lhasa.”

Mr Najeeb Jung, Vice-Chancellor of the university in his annual convocation address called His Holiness “the true inheritor in the contemporary world of the message of peace and non-violence pioneered by Mahatma Gandhi.”

Mr Jung said His Holiness through his steadfast commitment to the power of non-violent persuasion has restored the world’s faith in the relevance of moral critique. By his presence alone, Mr Jung said, His Holiness has made India a better place.

“The presence of His Holiness reminds us that India is the birthplace of many great faiths and home to all of them. Many great Buddhist teachers journeyed to Tibet in the 8th century to preach Buddhism and it is wholly appropriate that His Holiness should return to India to remind India of its Buddhist heritage and the rich diversity of its religious traditions,” Mr Jung said.

Addressing the graduating students, the Vice-Chancellor said, “It is a special moment that you step out in the world blessed by true Holiness, by an individual who embodies the best in humanism within a modern mind.”

Union Minister Mr Sibal in his address said in keeping with its secular traditions, Jamia Millia Islamia have chosen to honour His Holiness, a “noble soul who is the personification of the virtue of equanimity in pain and pleasure, being steadfast when changes around have been large and intense.”

Prince Salman Bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia, Palestinian-American literary theorist and intellectual Edward Said, eminent Urdu writer Ismat Chugtai, and renowned scholar of classical Indian dance, art and architecture Dr Kapila Vatsyana are some of the past recipients of the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters.

A total of 3,529 degrees and diplomas was awarded to students who have successfully completed post-graduation, graduation and diploma from different faculties, departments and centers of the university.

Established in 1920, Jamia Millia Islamia is historically counted as among the most important national institutions in India today. It is a pluralistic university closely linked to Muslim contributions in India’s struggle for nationhood.


Countering Stress and Depression

Originally published in the Hindustan Times, India, on January 3rd, 2011
At a fundamental level, as human beings, we are all the same; each one
of us aspires to happiness and each one of us does not wish to suffer.
This is why, whenever I have the opportunity, I try to draw people's
attention to what as members of the human family we have in common and
the deeply interconnected nature of our existence and welfare.
Today, there is increasing recognition, as well as a growing body of
scientific evidence, that confirms the close connection between our own
states of mind and our happiness. On the one hand, many of us live in
societies that are very developed materially, yet among us are many
people who are not very happy. Just underneath the beautiful surface of
affluence there is a kind of mental unrest, leading to frustration,
unnecessary quarrels, reliance on drugs or alcohol, and in the worst
case, suicide. There is no guarantee that wealth alone can give you the
joy or fulfilment that you seek. The same can be said of your friends
too. When you are in an intense state of anger or hatred, even a very
close friend appears to you as somehow frosty, or cold, distant, and
However, as human beings we are gifted with this wonderful human
intelligence. Besides that, all human beings have the capacity to be
very determined and to direct that strong sense of determination in
whatever direction they like. So long as we remember that we have this
marvellous gift of human intelligence and a capacity to develop
determination and use it in positive ways, we will preserve our
underlying mental health. Realizing we have this great human potential
gives us a fundamental strength. This recognition can act as a mechanism
that enables us to deal with any difficulty, no matter what situation we
are facing, without losing hope or sinking into feelings of low
I write this as someone who lost his freedom at the age of 16, then lost
his country at the age of 24. Consequently, I have lived in exile for
more than 50 years during which we Tibetans have dedicated ourselves to
keeping the Tibetan identity alive and preserving our culture and
values. On most days the news from Tibet is heartbreaking, and yet none
of these challenges gives grounds for giving up. One of the approaches
that I personally find useful is to cultivate the thought: If the
situation or problem is such that it can be remedied, then there is no
need to worry about it. In other words, if there is a solution or a way
out of the difficulty, you do not need to be overwhelmed by it. The
appropriate action is to seek its solution. Then it is clearly more
sensible to spend your energy focussing on the solution rather than
worrying about the problem. Alternatively, if there is no solution, no
possibility of resolution, then there is also no point in being worried
about it, because you cannot do anything about it anyway. In that case,
the sooner you accept this fact, the easier it will be for you. This
formula, of course, implies directly confronting the problem and taking
a realistic view. Otherwise you will be unable to find out whether or
not there is a resolution to the problem
Taking a realistic view and cultivating a proper motivation can also
shield you against feelings of fear and anxiety. If you develop a pure
and sincere motivation, if you are motivated by a wish to help on the
basis of kindness, compassion, and respect, then you can carry on any
kind of work, in any field, and function more effectively with less fear
or worry, not being afraid of what others think or whether you
ultimately will be successful in reaching your goal. Even if you fail to
achieve your goal, you can feel good about having made the effort. But
with a bad motivation, people can praise you or you can achieve goals,
but you still will not be happy.
Again, we may sometimes feel that our whole lives are unsatisfactory, we
feel on the point of being overwhelmed by the difficulties that confront
us. This happens to us all in varying degrees from time to time. When
this occurs, it is vital that we make every effort to find a way of
lifting our spirits. We can do this by recollecting our good fortune. We
may, for example, be loved by someone; we may have certain talents; we
may have received a good education; we may have our basic needs provided
for - food to eat, clothes to wear, somewhere to live - we may have
performed certain altruistic deeds in the past. We must take into
consideration even the slightest positive aspect of our lives. For if we
fail to find some way of uplifting ourselves, there is every danger of
sinking further into our sense of powerlessness. This can lead us to
believe that we have no capacity for doing good whatsoever. Thus we
create the conditions of despair itself.
As a Buddhist monk I have learned that what principally upsets our inner
peace is what we call disturbing emotions.? All those thoughts,
emotions, and mental events which reflect a negative or uncompassionate
state of mind inevitably undermine our experience of inner peace. All
our negative thoughts and emotions - such as hatred, anger, pride, lust,
greed, envy, and so on - are considered to be sources of difficulty, to
be disturbing. Negative thoughts and emotions are what obstruct our most
basic aspiration - to be happy and to avoid suffering. When we act under
their influence, we become oblivious to the impact our actions have on
others: they are thus the cause of our destructive behaviour both toward
others and to ourselves. Murder, scandal, and deceit all have their
origin in disturbing emotions.
This inevitably gives rise to the question - can we train the mind?
There are many methods by which to do this. Among these, in the Buddhist
tradition, is a special instruction called mind training, which focuses
on cultivating concern for others and turning adversity to advantage. It
is this pattern of thought, transforming problems into happiness that
has enabled the Tibetan people to maintain their dignity and spirit in
the face of great difficulties. Indeed I have found this advice of great
practical benefit in my own life.?
A great Tibetan teacher of mind training once remarked that one of the
mind’s most marvellous qualities is that it can be transformed. I have
no doubt that those who attempt to transform their minds, overcome their
disturbing emotions and achieve a sense of inner peace, will, over a
period of time, notice a change in their mental attitudes and responses
to people and events. Their minds will become more disciplined and
positive. And I am sure they will find their own sense of happiness grow
as they contribute to the greater happiness of others. I offer my
prayers that everyone who makes this their goal will be blessed with
The Dalai Lama
December 31, 2010
the AMITABHA section !!


the BOOK section !!


KNOW THYSELF, My Eightfold Path to Health


Throughout the ages philosophers and pre-eminent thinkers have sought to guide and teach us about ourselves. From Socrates in the West to Buddha in the East their teachings and practices were centred upon the simple principle of Know Thyself.  They were aware of the importance of the connection between ourselves and the world in which we live existing in multiple levels.  In the modern era we have tended to become preoccupied with the materiality of our existence, undervaluing if not forgetting the contribution to the essential well-being of our thoughts, our emotions and our spiritual nature.

Each of us has the inherent desire to lead a happy and fruitful life.  Yet how many of us are able to say that we have achieved this?  Self awareness on an emotional, mental, spiritual as well as physical level has long been the key to understanding and creating a better more fulfilling life for ourselves and those with whom we interact. 

My Eightfold Path to Health is your invitation to balanced health, personal growth and spiritual development.

Self awareness is the key to our health on so many levels.  My Eightfold Path to Health is a step-by-step guide relating my own experiences to assist with the development of personal awareness of the requirements to maintain optimal health and well-being of mind, body and spirit.

Based upon eight simple steps you develop your own understanding of yourself through personal reflection.  Who do you feel yourself to be?  What are your beliefs and values?  How is my health affected by my thoughts, my words and deeds?  Does my choice of livelihood impact on my health?  How much effort must I put into this process to achieve results?  Why must I focus my newfound mindfulness on those issues that have come to my attention?  What happens when I finish the Path?

By learning about yourself and monitoring your interaction with the world around you, you are best able to satisfy your needs for a more balanced approach to spiritual, emotional, mental and physical health.





Available Online:


Know Thyself, My Eightfold Path to Health       ISBN: 978-1-4269-0863-7

(Available in eBook, soft cover & hard cover)




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