#21 December 2017 Newsletter

Quick links in this edition:

Our Teachers Visit Shechen Centres
Shechen School Vision and Conference
Review of Restore Shechen
Life in the Valley of the Cranes
Shechen and You
New Book by Matthieu Ricard
Other Links

Our Teachers Visit Shechen Centers

This year has been very auspicious, as all the Shechen International Centers were graced by a visit from both of our teachers.
Shechen Monastery in Eastern Tibet
In August Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche went to Shechen Monastery in Eastern Tibet for the first time in seven years, fulfilling the long-held wishes of the monks and people of Shechen and the surrounding areas. He performed a two-day consecration ceremony of the newly built temple and gave empowerments some of which were attended by over 20,000 people.

Rinpoche also bestowed empowerments and oral transmissions from the kama and terma, as well as the oral transmission of Shechen Gyaltsab Rinpoche’s Collected Works to 2,000 tulkus, khenpos, monks, and lamas. Rinpoche was delighted and moved to be able to return and meet the local monastics, yogis, and laypeople. (See more).

Terma MeetingAfter his visit to Tibet, Rinpoche went on pilgrimage in China. He travelled Putosang ,the sacred site of Chenrezig, and Mount Wutaishan (Five Peaked Mountain of Manjushri) where he offered additional gold to the memorial stupa of Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

In late October he visited the Shechen Center in Taiwan after a six years absence. While he was there he gave teachings on the Rangjung Pema Nyingthik Preliminaries.

In Nepal, Rinpoche collaborated with Dakpo Rinpoche and senior khenpos and tulkus on the preservation and continuation of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche’s Collected Works and revealed treasures. The aim of the meetings is to clarify and collate information on exactly how to practice and perform rituals and ceremonies, so that a manual can be written to assist those wishing to practice these treasure teachings in the future. He will be in Bodhgaya, India, later this month to teach year seven of the annual Shechen Seminar.

Dilgo Khyentse Yangsi Rinpoche visited various countries and three Shechen Centers in October and November. He began his international tour in Singapore with a public talk presented to an audience of more than five hundred people on the value of lineage and having a good heart. He later conferred the empowerment of Thukdrup Barche Kunsel – Dispeller of Obstacles, The Heart Practice of Guru Padmasambhava from the Chokling Tersar at the Rangjung Yeshe Oddiyana centre.

Enlightenment StupaKhyentse Yangsi Rinpoche then visited Australia, for the first time, at the long-standing invitation of Ven. Bhante Mahinda, Sister Sumitra, and the members and community of the Aloka Dharma Center near Sydney. He consecrated the Enlightenment Stupa, which contains the relics of Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, and blessed the shrines. He also gave two public talks and presided over the 26th Parinirvana Anniversary celebration of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

Rinpoche officiated at a “freeing of lives” ceremony in Sydney, where more than 7,000 marine animals were released. A few days later more than twenty cows in Shri Lanka were purchased from slaughterhouses and given to poor farmers to work in their farms. Rinpoche concluded his visit with a Longevity Empowerment of Tangtong Gyalpo, attended by more than 550 people.

Mexico talksAfter briefly returning to India to attend Kyabje Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche’s cremation, Rinpoche went to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, at the long-standing invitation of the disciples of Kyabje Trulshik Rinpoche at Yayasan Guan Yin Foundation.

He offered the students there the empowerments of Rigzin Dupa and Dechen Gyalmo from the Longchen Nyingtik, as well as Vajrakilaya and Chenrezi from the termas of Jamyang Khyentse Wongpo. He also gave an impassioned teaching on the need to thoroughly integrate the dharma with your entire being. Rinpoche also visited his father, Tsiki Choling Rinpoche’s center, where he gave an empowerment of Guru Rinpoche and advice to the community.

From November 1-4 Khyentse Yangsi Rinpoche gave teachings in Hong Kong at the invitation of the Shechen Center. He bestowed the empowerment of Guru Mawe Sengye from the Heart Accomplishment of Guru Rinpoche. He also gave pointed heart advice and the transmission of the Praise to Manjushri.

Mexico talksFinally, Rinpoche travelled to the two Shechen Mexico Centers. In Mexico City he gave a public talk, a talk to the sangha, and bestowed the Chime Phagme Nyingtik and Nyak Phur Vajrakilaya empowerments (all treasure teachings of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche). In the Guadalajara Shechen Center, Rinpoche gave a public talk and 2 days of teachings.

Later, he led a five-day retreat at a beautiful location besides a fresh water lake a few hours drive from Guadalajara. One hundred people from countries across the globe attended. He taught from Rangjung Pema Nyingtik preliminaries and led meditation sessions by the lake.

Sean Price did a wonderful job offering translation assistance for all the events. Rinpoche’s teachings and presence were joyously received in all the countries he visited and he enjoyed meeting the many students and practitioners.

Shechen School Vision and Conference

Shechen students

One hundred and thirty-five boys from poor remote villages are enrolled in the Shechen School. The school integrates modern education with the spiritual education. Three years ago, the school only went up through 5th grade and was run as a traditional monastic school. Now the school offers courses in math, science, computer training, as well as English, and continues up through 7th grade. Our goal is to reach Class 12 and integrate these studies with monastic college courses.

On November 3-5, a successful conference focusing on integrating modern and spiritual education was held in Kathmandu. Sponsored by the Khyentse Foundation, it was attended by 38 monasteries and organized, in part, by our school principal, Jhabindra Kumar Subedi.

“It is inspiring to see monasteries now taking a great interest in promoting education,” remarked one participant. “This will definitely bring change and advancement in the field of monastic education and its management.”

We need quality education to equip monks to be skillful and navigate the 21st century world. Please join us and contribute to the support of the school, or become a sponsor.

Review of Restore Shechen

Restoring ShechenYOUR one-time and recurring donations, large gifts, and the matching funds offered since the 2015 Nepal earthquake successfully funded the restoration of Shechen Monastery. We are deeply grateful for your generosity and open heartedness.

It has been a long and arduous process that you made possible to complete.

The temple exterior is painted dark red again. The sound system is being reinstalled. Ornaments and carvings inside the temple are carefully being painted.

The only work remaining is the painting of the complex and beautiful interior murals depicting the lineage masters and teachers.

Thank you for your sustained and committed support to restore Shechen!

We did it!!!

Life in the Valley of the Cranes

New home - Valley of the CranesThe youngest nuns from Shechen Nunnery in Bhutan have moved to their new home in the Valley of the Cranes, Phubjikha, Bhutan. Thanks to your support and a donation from the Pema Chodron Foundation we were able to build this wonderful hostel for them. They perform ceremonies, study, and practice in the peace and quiet of this beautiful location.

Rabjam Rinpoche recently visited them and gave teachings and blessings. He told us, “The local communities have great respect for our nuns and often ask them to lead ceremonies and give advice. We are happy with the progress being made in the nunnery. However, they need a new van – the one I bought them is now 22 years old and I worry about its safety!”

The nuns use the van to shop for supplies, go to medical appointments, and to travel to perform pujas and visit local families. A donor has offered $20,000 as a matching fund towards the purchase of a new van.

Help us buy a new van for the nuns by giving to the Nuns Van Matching Fund by December 31st.

You can make a one-time or recurring donation.
Please add a note: “nuns van”

Thank you!

Shechen and You

Shechen and You

Our donors and benefactors are an essential part of the life of Shechen. They help make Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche’s vision into reality.

We are also looking for volunteers to help support our vision.

• Social media and communication are vital to our work. We need a committed volunteer with experience in social media to help spread our message.

• Could you organize an event or party to introduce our sponsorship programs to friends, co-workers, and family? We’re trying to double the number of sponsors.

• If you are a professional teacher, consider volunteering at the Shechen School.

Join the Shechen family! Contact Vivian Kurz at shechen@sprynet.com

New Book by Matthieu Ricard

Beyond the SelfBeyond the Self: Conversations between Buddhism and Neuroscience presents converging and diverging views on the mind, the self, consciousness, the unconscious, free will, perception, meditation, and other topics.

The wide-ranging conversation between Matthieu Ricard and Wolf Singer is an enlightening and engaging encounter between Buddhism’s wealth of experiential findings and neuroscience’s abundance of experimental results.

Buddhism shares with science the task of examining the mind empirically. Neuroscience, on the other hand, relies on third-person knowledge in the form of scientific observation. In this book, close friends Matthieu Ricard and Wolf Singer, a distinguished neuroscientist, offer their perspectives on the mind, the self, consciousness, the unconscious, free will, meditation, and neuroplasticity.

Beyond the Self: Conversations between Buddhism and Neuroscience
Matthieu Ricard and Wolf Singer
MIT Press

Other Links

For continuing news please regularly visit our website where you can sponsor a monk or nun, donate to one of our projects, request prayers and find new information and photos. Current photos and news can also be found on our Facebook page.