Buddhist Arts

Sertok Erected at Gomde Cooperstown

Aug 8, 2019

  In July 2019, on Guru Rinpoche Day, Tulku Migmar Tsering consecrated the  sertok that was erected atop the main shrine barn at Gomde Cooperstown. The local sangha and retreatants were fortunate...

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Tibetan Ritual Music

Jul 30, 2019

Tibetan ritual music makes a major impression on newcomers to Tibetan Buddhist pūjās. People are often surprised and impressed by the dramatic and sometimes deafening sounds of ritual music. Monastic group chanting is known...

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The Buddhist Wheel of Life

Sep 28, 2017

Buddhist Wheel of Life Paintings adorn monastery porches throughout the Himalayan region.   We may also know the Sanskrit name, the Bhavacakra, or "Wheel of Existence".  In the Tibetan Vinaya, or monastic rules, the Buddha instructs monks to paint the...

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Buddhist Flags: History and Meaning

Sep 19, 2017

Buddhist flags flutter around temples and monuments throughout the world today. Yet, the six-striped flag we see today is a modern...

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Dharma Wheel and Pair of Deer

Sep 12, 2017

We may notice certain representations such as a Dharma wheel with two deer gazing steadily at it appear frequently. Why do we see this image on every...

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Ritual Dance: Tibetan Buddhist ‘cham

Aug 27, 2017

Ritual dance performances occur on special days in the Tibetan calendar, particularly around the new year, and are an important way of transmitting the Dharma....

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Maṇi Wheels Spreading the Dharma

Aug 20, 2017

When we spin maṇi wheels in a clockwise direction, rolls of paper (or film) printed with mantras spin. In this way, we are turning the wheel of the Dharma for the benefit of sentient beings and accumulating...

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Prayer Flags

Jul 20, 2017

Prayer flags have now become very popular throughout the world. What is their history and...

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Gar Cham – Meditative Dance – “Lama Dance”

Feb 6, 2016

Meditative Dance Tibetan Meditative Dance, or Gar Cham , often referred to as “Lama dance”, is a ritual performance.  Lamas and  practitioners dance within the three fold meditative practice of deity, mantra...

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Suggested Reading

Dudjom Rinpoche, The Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, trans. and ed. by Gyurme Dorje and Matthew Kapstein (Boston: Wisdom Publications, 1991), vol. 1, pages 468–474.

Ngawang Zangpo, Guru Rinpoche: His Life and Times, Ithaca: Snow Lion, 2002.

Nyoshul Khenpo, A Marvelous Garland of Rare Gems: Biographies of Masters of Awareness in the Dzogchen Lineage, trans. Richard Barron (Junction City: Padma Publishing, 2005), pages 41–48.

Padmasambhava, Legend of the Great Stupa, Berkeley: Dharma Publishing, 1973

Padmasambhava & Jamgön Kongtrul, The Light of Wisdom, trans. by Erik Pema Kunsang (Boudhanath: Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 1986-1999), pages 43-47 & Appendix 5.

Taranatha, The Life of Padmasambhava, Shang Shung Edizioni, 2005

Tulku Thondup, Masters of Meditation and Miracles, Shambhala, 1996.

Yeshe Tsogyal, Life and Liberation of Padmasambhava, translated by Kenneth Douglas and Gwendolyn Bays (Emeryville: Dharma Publishing, 1978, republished 2008).

Yeshe Tsogyal, Lotus Born: The Life Story of Padmasambhava, Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 2004.

‘The Life of Guru Padmasambhava’ in A Great Treasure of Blessings, The Tertön Sogyal Trust, 2004.