The second UK Kagyu Monlam is taking place at Kagyu Samye Ling Monastery from 10th - 17th June and will be presided over by Drupon Khen Rinpoche, Karma Lhabu, the Retreat Master of Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, who has kindly agreed to make an extra visit to the UK.
We hope that this second Monlam will be a magnificent event and that as many people as possible will take part.
In 2009, HH 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, gave a special address in Bodhgaya on the relationship between the Kagyu Monlam and the environment.
"One reason to have the Monlam is that by gathering here in the sacred place of Bodhgaya, where our Teacher attained complete and perfect awakening, we can remember our Teacher's deeds.
A single hunter can kill many animals in one day, and some areas or mountains have almost no animals left. Fishermen go out in technologically advanced fishing boats and can put out their nets and catch many tens of thousands of fish at a time. In many areas, the fish are being wiped out. It is similar with butchers. In olden times, the best of butchers could kill perhaps a hundred animals in one day. Nowadays, because of technology, they can kill hundreds of beings in just a few minutes. The earth's inherent nature is such that it could be sustained for a very long time, but the negative actions and karma of sentient beings are so powerful that there is a danger that life on earth will not be sustainable for much longer. If the earth is destroyed, there will be no Dharma, no earth, or anything at all left. We need to consider this carefully.
These days there is a lot of discussion about global warming. Some people seem to be unable to hear it; some people are able to hear it and are paying attention. But whether we know it or not, if we just look at the physical situation, the world is getting warmer. In Tibet, the primordial glaciers are melting, and there is not much of them left any more. We always talk about the snow mountains of Tibet, but these days there are just dark rocks; there is no longer any snow to be seen. When these are all gone, there will be a great danger for the humans and all the creatures who live on the shores of the world's oceans. How many people died in the tsunami a few years ago? It is not impossible that an even stronger and more terrible one might happen in the future. When that happens, it will not help to say, "What did we do?" We have already had warnings this would happen. We are all the same in wanting to be happy and free of suffering. Knowing that such a danger is coming but nevertheless turning our backs on it is wrong. It is carelessness and a lack of mindfulness and awareness. Our selfish pride and attention to our own wants is like poisonous food. If we can develop our altruistic thoughts, then I think that participating in the Kagyu Monlam will have been meaningful.
During the Monlam we should make the aspiration that this virtue becomes the seed of peace and happiness for all the limitless beings throughout space, and that it becomes a cause which increases and gives power to our love and affection. In particular, we should keep in mind those beings with whom we are directly connected, the beings who live on this planet, and dedicate the virtue we have done to them. We should make the vast aspiration that they may receive this just as we have dedicated it. "
Bodhgaya, January 11, 2009,
We hope that as many people as possible will be able to join us at Samye Ling so that we can collectively strengthen these aspirations and, from that, our positive actions.
The Second UK Kagyu Monlam takes place at Kagyu Samye Ling from 10th - 17th June. Full details are available on the Kagyu Samye Ling website.