My thoughts and activities in Dharamsala

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Chillin' in Dehra Dun

I have just arrived in Dehra Dun about two days ago. The bus ride was not so bad (besides the big pile of holy cow manure that I accidentally placed one of my big bags on top of), but I do have a lot stuff to travel with which make it a bit of pain. I won’t do that one again!! Luckily after this I will get to Delhi by train (at least that is the plan) and then fly to the US of A. Interestingly enough, the day that I left McLeod Ganj, HHDL had arrived from Mongolia and the day that I arrived in Dehra Dun His Holiness Sakya Trizin had arrived. Unfortunately I was not able to welcome him, because I was locked inside the guest house. But I got to watch the monks and nuns get ready for his arrival through the front window of the guest house.

Since I have been here, I have met with Dagmo Kusho la just once very briefly. It seems that I might have an opportunity to have an audience with H.H Sakya Trizin, in which I am very excited about, since it was with H.H. Sakya Trizin that I received my first empowerment, and since then I have had a great desire to study the Sakya sect’s dialectical philosophies. I am hoping that during this stay I will be able to figure out if this is a possibility. These kind of studies take years and are usually only for monastics. But now a days, there are some monasteries who are taking foreign and Tibetan lay practitioners who can demonstrate dedication and mastery of the Tibetan Language, which I hope to have gained with two more years of language study. Dagmo Kusho la has also requested that I teach an English class to some of the younger monks here, in which I happily obliged, but I have not heard from her to know what the schedule will be. I think that it will be fun.

Also today started an 11 day puja, in which a 3-D sand mandala will be built in the Tsuglakhang. I spoke with some monks yesterday who told me about it, some of them trip out over my Tibetan. They were building some tormas (ritual dough sculptures) which came out very beautiful. The puja started early this morning at about 2am, with H.H. Sakya Trizin and his two sons present. Also there are two guys who are making a documentary about some Sakya monks from Nepal who came to Dehra Dun on pilgrimage to receive an audience from H.H. Sakya Trizin and to participate in this puja and build the sand mandala. If I am correct, the puja is in connection with a deity named Dorje Phagpa. This practice is also found in other schools of Tibetan Buddhism, but for some reason that I do not know it is special in the Sakya Sect. I think that it is because it has had an interrupted transmission since about the 700’s or something like that. I hope to talk more with the guys who are making the film and find out more about it.



Anonymous said...

You, my long but not lost friend, are amazing!



Wayne said...

It is your older sister Nyedia and I just found you online! I love you and I'm so proud of you! Please Please email me at

p.s. Marlyn loves you too!!!! And leave a phone # because we have internat'l long distance!