Sunday, June 19, 2011

Kalachakra Initiation D.C. 2011

NEW! His Holiness The Dalai Lama will be live streaming the teachings leading up to the initiation! So, if you can't be there, you can watch or listen to these teachings either in English or Chinese right here, online. Here is the link to that:

For anyone attending this Highest Yoga Tantra Empowerment, there are several useful texts and websites for valuable information. I've read and studied because with this initiation, which lasts 3 days and concludes on the 4th day with the dismantling of the sand mandala, there is a lot of visualization of the Kalachakra Mandala.

I think having some idea of what will happen at this glorious event will make it easier to concentrate and be present for what His Holiness as Kalachakra will be instructing us to do and visualize. This initiation is different than all other Highest Yoga Tantra and has its own set of unique workings.

I highly recommend The Berzin Archives where he give his book away online in PDF format. This instructional manual is so understandable and the explanation makes perfect sense. Find it here in his Kalachakra text.

At the end of this text there is an outline of the entire initiation process which is excellent, but in the pages before, Dr. Berzin gives a detailed explanation of everything; from beginning to end, including commentary on all the vows. He further makes it clear that we should not be put off by the vows. These are things we already do in our lives to be a good person. However, when you make it a vow, it becomes more valid and when you acknowledge a vow, be it broken or kept, you have a different energy to immediately do something about it. He also explains the root downfalls, how we lose our vows, and how hard that is based on the teachings. Many things have to take place.

Here I found a short animation of the Kalachakra Mandala and how it is not only magnificent, but it is a fully 3D Mandala and is to be visualized as such. Take a look:

His Holiness will be giving two preliminary teachings. 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva, which you can download in the link below this comment. It is a thorough teaching given by Bhikkshuni Ven. Thubten Chodron. She gives a rather clear, concise commentary on these practices which are especially geared toward western students.

In addition, His Holiness will be teaching on Middling Stages of Meditation. I found a video teaching by His Holiness Karmapa 17th from the Kagyu lineage. It is profound, especially the audience questions; I watched it in two parts. Here are the links for those teachings:

If you want a very detailed, easy to understand audio commentary on the actual Kalachakra Initiation to hear in addition to the Berzin Archives PDF on the subject, there is a concise version given by Geshe Ngwang Dakpa from Tse Chen Ling, the resident Geshe of an FPMT center in San Francisco:

Last, but not least, a new book has just been released of the teachings by the (late) Holy Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, who was the Master of Kalachakra! Here is a link to his book:
Principles of Buddhist Tantra

It may be too late to obtain and read this now, but I will own it because even after the initiation there will be much to understand and develop as the practice takes more meaning.

Further, if you want to actually hear the teaching by Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche which was given at Land of Medicine Buddha in Soquel, California, please go here and listen online or download it for free:

Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche Tantra Grounds and Path Kalachakra

Click here on the word Kalachakra for the official website. There is a lot of information about the venue, empowerment, what you can or cannot bring and any questions on protocol need to be specific because outside of being mindful, respectful to monastic sangha, dressing appropriately, which means be comfortable, but not overly sloppy or overly exposed.

So, as you can see, there are many resources for this information and you can listen to and read all I've posted prior to taking the initiation. There are many places on the Internet to read or listen to tantra instruction, but a lot of it is restricted to those who have already taking the initiation. Please regard that strongly and wait.
If you are attending, please travel safely and I hope to see everyone I know who is going at the event and look forward to being your Vajra sister. This is for World Peace! This is not just for the self, it is for all sentient beings and is precious and special. May His Holiness be well and arrive safely and in perfect health. May He live a very long life in perfect health.