Colors of Life like colors of rainbow

Eye on every activities that catches my mind and touches my heart


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The Magic of Cave Meditation

Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.” — Saint Francis de Sales

Meditation for me is like oxygen something I cannot do without. My eight years of meditation experiences helps me to  know my inner self  at least for some hours in a day. My day starts with 45 minutes of meditation early morning and ends with half an hour of meditation in the evening.There are many benefits of meditation. It lowers stress, energizes you, help us to stay focused. Have a look to the diagram to know more.

Photo credit : Google

The mighty powers of meditation

The mighty powers of meditation 

 

Now I have a dream to go to cave and meditate. If you are mediator then you will definitely enjoy meditating in cave.  There are many Lama Gurus, Nuns and Saints who abide in cave retreat withdrawing the outgoing senses and mind for long time.   My source of inspiration is Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo . She is born 1943 is a Tibetan Buddhist nun in the Drukpa Lineage of the Kagyu school. She is an author, teacher and founder of the Dongyu Gatsal Ling Nunnery in Himachal PradeshIndia. She is best known for being one of the very few Western Yoginis trained in the East, having spent twelve years living in a remote cave in the Himalayas, three of those years in strict meditation retreat. Her book “Cave in the snow” is must read book for people who is seeking for  cave retreat.

must read book: Cave in the Snow"

must read book: “Cave in the Snow”   Photo credit : Google

“I took the vow to attain enlightenment in a female body, no matter how many lifetimes it may take.”

— Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo

Cave where JetsunTenzin Palmo meditate for 12 years

Cave where Tenzin Palmo meditated for 12 years, Photo credit : The Dakini Power

There are many caves in Nepal where people experiment with their inner self.  One of the solitary cave is in Pharping,  Nepal.  Pharping  is a small village South West of Kathmandu.  Outside of the town on the hillside resides Padmasambhava’s Meditation Caves known as  Asura cave.

 

Pharping

Pharping

Prayers Flag

Prayers Flag

The great master, Padmasambhava, attained the Mahamudra level of enlightenment through the practice of Vishuddha Heruka combined with the sadhana of Vajra Kilaya at the upper cave of Yangleshö, also known as Asura Cave. Asura Cave is also the retreat center for ‘practice’ .

Asura Cave

Asura Cave

lamp

Butter lamp

The Prayers in Seven Chapters is a proof that Guru Rinpoche meditate in Asura Cave.

Blessed

inner shrine of another cave nearby Asura cave

 

Butter Lamps

Butter Lamps

As it says in chapter five, the prayer requested by Nanam Dorje Dudjom, in ‘The Prayer in Seven Chapters to Padmakara, the Second Buddha’:
In the rock cave of Yangleshö in Nepal,
You accomplished the practice of Yangdak, ‘Essence of Great Bliss’
Liberating all obstacles and obstructors through Vajrakilaya;
And, in this sacred place you attained the siddhi of mahamudra:
To Dorje Tötreng Tsal, we pray!
To the Lotus-born Guru of Orgyen, we pray!

From “A Great Treasure of Blessings”. In the life story of Guru Rinpoche it says: “Then at Yangleshö, present day Pharping in Nepal, he practised the sadhana of Yangdak Heruka with the consort Shakyadevi, daughter of a king of Nepal. Powerful spirits caused a three-year drought, with famine and disease, and Padmasambhava asked his teachers in India for a teaching to counter them. Two men returned, laden with the tantras and commentaries of Vajrakilaya, and the moment they arrived, the obstacles were pacified. Guru Rinpoche and Shakyadevi both attained the third vidyadhara level, ‘vidyadhara of the great seal, or mahamudra’. Guru Rinpoche recognized that Yangdak is like a merchant engaging in trade-the achievement can be great, but so can the obstacles, whereas Vajrakilaya is like an armed escort; he is needed to guard against obstacles and overcome them. He then composed sadhanas of Yangdak and Vajrakilaya combined, and bound the guardians of Vajrakilaya to protect the teachings.”

another cave

another cave on the way to Asura Cave

Bad Karma or fate , asking for money

Bad Karma or fate , asking for money

Few years ago, I visited Asura Cave in Pharping.  Cave is something different for mediator.  Entering such a you  can feel a kind of sensation and positive vibes too. There is solitude in cave and it is so peaceful.  Going on a cave retreat  means you need to be free from everything. Actually, it is only meant for aspirants who have intense feelings of meditation. You need to bear hunger, cold, thirst and lost attractions for the world, sense objects etc.  Once you come back from cave retreat and practice in the daily life than it helps in spiritual growth. Cave is warm in winter and cool in summer.  I am sure I will get chance  to experience  the magic of cave meditation very soon.

Shrine inside cave

Shrine inside cave

There is another sacred cave in the high Himalayan Mountains. Lawudo cave is in Solu Khumbu, eastern region of Nepal. Lawudo (altitude 4,000 m.-13,000 ft.) is situated in the highest area of Solu Khumbu, the northeastern region of Nepal bordering Upper Tsang in Southern Tibet. Nestling in the jade green Himalayan Mountains, amidst the  juniper trees, mountain peaks and floating clouds is the most beautiful hermitage of Lawudo. This extremely beautiful and fascinating region is considered to be a “hidden valley” or beyal, a special country blessed by Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava).In fact, just above Lawudo is a large cliff known as the Dragkarma, or White Cliff, which is said to be the actual entrance to one of the secret valleys of Khumbu. Lama Zopa Rinpoche , the head of foundation of head of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition spent the last 20 years of his previous life in intense retreat in Lawudo.

Laudo Cave

Lawudo  Gompa Cave, photo credit : Lawudo Gallery

Another Lawudo cave

Another Lawudo Gompa cave,  photo credit : Lawudo Gallery

decoration inside Lawudo cave

Decoration inside Lawudo Gompa  cave, photo credit : Lawudo  gallery

Yes cave is a pleasant place  to dwell and practice.   Wise Shabkar   beautiful poem is more than enough to explain the meaning of cave.  Shabkar is a model hermit, yogin, and Tibetan Buddhist teacher .

In wild places where no one lives 

Are pleasant caves to dwell and practice
In wild places where no one lives
One’s consoling friends will be animals and birds.

In wild places where no one lives
One’s nourishment will be roots and berries.

In wild places where no one lives
Is the market where samsara  is traded for nirvana

In wild places where no one lives
Are the conditions favorable for realization

In wild places where no one lives
Is natural beauty delightful to behold

There is no possible way to express
The many virtues of staying in remote and lonely places
Far removed form human habitation

Therefore, heir of the victorious Ones
Go to a secluded place and practice

 

 

 


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Pullahari Monastery: An Oasis of Peace

In Pullahari, with its good clean earth,
Its water so sparkling clean and its clean fresh air;
Here in the solitude of this secluded place,
With its spacious scenery and relaxing view;
To listen and reflect on the Teaching here
In Pullahari, what Lucky Star!    

 Ven. Khenpo Tsultrim Gyatso Rinpoche

Visiting monastery  is like having a glimpse of Buddha .It not only  strengthen my practice but also refreshes my mind. I can feel positive vibes of the monastery. There are many monasteries here in Kathmandu. Recently I visited Pullahari Monastery nestled in north of Bouddhanath Stupa. This monastery  is abode of faith, peace and knowledge. It is nearly one-hour walk form Bouddhanath. There are many pathway to reach there. But if you take taxi from Bouddha, it will go through Jorpati and you will reach Gokarna. After Gokarna you will enter a beautiful forest (where park  in the name of martyrs is being made ) you can drive along a beautiful forest of Salla (Pinus roxburghii ) trees and finally to Pullahari monastery.                                                                                                     Photo Credit :  Baba Humptydumpty .

Salla  (Pinus roxburghii ) trees

Salla (Pinus roxburghii ) trees

Prayers flag

Prayers flag

prayers flag spreading peace

prayers flag spreading peace

In 1986, the Third Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche accepted the offer of a piece of land by the Third Dilyak Dabzang Rinpoche (1929 – 1992) and agreed to his request to set up a 3-year Mahamudra retreat centre. He named the place “Pullahari” after Lord Naropa’s monastery in Bihar, India, where Naropa declared Lotsawa Marpa (1012 – 1097) his Dharma Heir in Tibet. Pullahari Monastery is open in March 1992.

way to Pullhari Monastery

way to Pullahari Monastery

The monastery itself is rich in wonderful architecture . The treasured images of deities and scripture covers wall of the monastery. We can feel the positive energy everywhere. The atmosphere & surroundings is  distinctly serene and picturesque. Having quietly entered the hall I walked closer to the idols, admired the tastefully crafted & painted deities and took pictures.

Pullahari Monastery

Pullahari Monastery

 Buddhas inside monastery

Buddhas and Lama gurus statue  inside  the monastery

Drums handing inside the monastery

Drums hanging inside the monastery

Lama praying

Lama praying

Pullahari Monastery extends  in huge area . Everywhere you can greenery and blossoming flowers of various species. The place is serene spreading harmony at the every corner  of the monastery.

beautiful flower

beautiful flower

 posing for  a photo shoot  :-)

posing for a photo shoot 🙂

I was speechless to see small Stupa cluster in one place which is another major attraction of Pullahari Monastery.

 Small Stupas

Small Stupas

Rhythmic chanting and the smell of incense fill the air. Inside the monastery a large congregation of monks were reverentially conducting their prayers for the benefit of beings and ultimate realization Lamas (teachers) and student monks deeply engrossed in chanting in their booming voices unmindful of the surroundings & activities around them. Their chanting always brings tears in my eyes.

monks chanting prayers

small monks chanting prayers

more monks

more monks

We can see monks  involved in various social activities. They are aware of environment pollution too.

separating biodegradable waste from non-biodegradable waste for appropriate recycling and disposal. Updates Pullahari Photo Blog Pullahari Photo Blog Pullahari sits on top of a mountain and overlooks the Kathmandu valley. It is especially beautiful and serene in the mornings. In Pullahari, we have planted a variety of trees and plants. We also plant vegetables and herbs in and around the grounds of... Participating Monasteries Bhutan     Nyede Rabtenling Monastery, Bhutan.     Karma Drubdey Palmo Choskyi Dingkhang India     Bokar Ngedon Chokhor Ling Monastery     Bokar Shedra institute, South India     Drikhung Kagyupa Monastic Institute     Kagyu Nalanda Monastery, South India     Karma Drubgyu Thargay Ling     Pal Karma Zurmang     Palchen Chöling     Palpung Sherabling     Phodong Monastery     Rumtek Monastery     Shedup Chokhorling     Tashi Chöling     Tawang Monastery     Tergar Monastery     Thoesam Norling Ghatsal     Tsurphu Labrang Gyuto Monastery     Vajra Vidya Institute Nepal     Benchen Phuntsok Dargyeling     Dilyak Dabzang Monastery     Karma Drubchhen Choeling     Karma Leksheyling     Karma Samtenling Monastery     Lo Karma Samdup Ling Trust     Nehnang Phuntsok Choling Monastery     Ngedon Oseling Monastery     Palchen Choeling     Palnge Monastery     Pullahari Monastery     Repa Bharma Samdup Choekorling     Thekchey Leksheyling     Thrangu Tara Abbey     Thrangu Tashi Choling     Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery     Wosel Karma Tekchok Ling Nunnery USA     Karma Triyana Dharmachakra (KTD) Monastery     Site Map     | About     | Karmapa's Activity     | Projects     | Resources     | News     | Get Involved     | Contact Login: Admin Monasteries separating biodegradable waste from non-biodegradable waste for appropriate recycling and disposal. Updates Pullahari Photo Blog Pullahari Photo Blog Pullahari sits on top of a mountain and overlooks the Kathmandu valley. It is especially beautiful and serene in the mornings. In Pullahari, we have planted a variety of trees and plants. We also plant vegetables and herbs in and around the grounds of... Participating Monasteries Bhutan     Nyede Rabtenling Monastery, Bhutan.     Karma Drubdey Palmo Choskyi Dingkhang India     Bokar Ngedon Chokhor Ling Monastery     Bokar Shedra institute, South India     Drikhung Kagyupa Monastic Institute     Kagyu Nalanda Monastery, South India     Karma Drubgyu Thargay Ling     Pal Karma Zurmang     Palchen Chöling     Palpung Sherabling     Phodong Monastery     Rumtek Monastery     Shedup Chokhorling     Tashi Chöling     Tawang Monastery     Tergar Monastery     Thoesam Norling Ghatsal     Tsurphu Labrang Gyuto Monastery     Vajra Vidya Institute Nepal     Benchen Phuntsok Dargyeling     Dilyak Dabzang Monastery     Karma Drubchhen Choeling     Karma Leksheyling     Karma Samtenling Monastery     Lo Karma Samdup Ling Trust     Nehnang Phuntsok Choling Monastery     Ngedon Oseling Monastery     Palchen Choeling     Palnge Monastery     Pullahari Monastery     Repa Bharma Samdup Choekorling     Thekchey Leksheyling     Thrangu Tara Abbey     Thrangu Tashi Choling     Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery     Wosel Karma Tekchok Ling Nunnery USA     Karma Triyana Dharmachakra (KTD) Monastery     Site Map     | About     | Karmapa's Activity     | Projects     | Resources     | News     | Get Involved     | Contact Login: Admin Monasteries waste management Photo credit : Pullhari. M

separating biodegradable waste from non-biodegradable waste for recycling and disposal.
Updates : Pullahari Photo Blog

Innocent little monks are the manifest of Little Buddha.

Baba HumptyDumpty with little Buddhas

Baba Humptydumpty with little Buddhas

I finally left the monastery and promise myself to visit it again. I think one time visit didn’t quench my thirst. The rhythmic deep chants continued to resonate in my minds for on the way to home. The whole experience was out of the world and deeply transformational and I came away with a feeling of belonging and peace. Such is the power of the monastery and the prayer of monks.

Baba HumptyDumpty more than happy

Monastery ground


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First phage of planting

My feeling was, you plant some seeds.  If they grow, great; if they don’t, you don’t take it personally. Not my problem; I just kept planting.  Just like a farmer.Hank Haney

Recently I experiment planting some seed  reusing  of rice sacks, tires, bottles, bucket  and container. To my surprise, they are growing well. Planting is like raising a child. They need food, water and care too. Most amazing thing is to see them growing day by day . Moreover, organic vegetables are best for your health.

I think this is the best way to make reuse of materials and keep environment clean specially in country like Nepal. This is just a beginning. I have planned to do it in a large-scale and I will be updating it in the near future. Here are some pictures I am sharing with you all.

Pumpkin growing in a rice sack

Pumpkin growing in a rice sack

Sponge Guard  growing in a rice sack

Sponge Guard growing in a rice sack

Chillies and Mint

Chilies and Mint

tomato

tomato

mint

mint in curd cup

pumpkin again

pumpkin again

tomato in a bucket

tomato in a bucket

Aloevera

Colocassia Leaf

Colocassia Leaf

beans

beans

 


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Blissful days at Kopan Monastery

I want to dedicate this article to Late Rinpochhe Nawang Kochha who died nearly two years ago due to cancer.  See I am on your path…

With late Rinpochhe Nawang Kochha

With late Rinpochhe Nawang Kochha

This day is a special day, 
It is yours. 
Yesterday slipped away 
It cannot be filled with more meaning. 
About tomorrow nothing is known. 
But this day, today, is yours. 
Make use of it. 
Today you can make someone happy. 
Today you can help another. 
This day is a special day, 
It is yours. 

Indian Poem from Lam Rim Book

 Kopan Monastery is paradise with beautiful garden, greenery, and spectacular view of Kathmandu valley.  We can see incredible view from any point of monastery.

view from Kopan

view from Kopan

Monastery

Monastery

The peaceful garden with beautiful flowers and splendid stupas adds more serenity.  There is small hill nearby garden from where you can see sunrise and sunset too. Likewise, you can begin your day with yoga with fresh air and birds chirping around.  We all are there to stay focused and concentrated so using of mobile phone, laptops and playing music  are prohibited. They believe that it will disturb our practice.

garden

stupa in garden

stupa in garden

water flow

serene water flow

I recently joined for the 10 days (April 19-19) Buddhist beginners course.  All together there are 115 participants from all over the world. I am the only one from Nepal a Hindu woman searching the meaning of my existence in this earth.  I love Buddhist philosophy, practices and prayers.

better to refrain these things every day in our life

better to refrain these things every day in our life

On April 19 our check in time was till 4pm. At 5pm we gather for introduction and short meditation.  Ani Caron , nun from Sweden welcomed us. She is amazing nun with soft-spoken voice, charming face and caring too.

Aani Caron, best teacher I have ever met

Aani Caron, best teacher I have ever met

Next day I woke up at 5a.m. before the wake up bell, which used to ring at 5:45am during the course.  I did yoga for 45minutes and go for tea at 6am. We had breakfast at 7:30am. After that mediation guided by lovely monk and teaching till 11.30am followed by lunch at 11:45am.  Everyday our class starts with three prostrations before teaching starts. Prostration is done to decrease false pride and the sense of ego and it is not compulsion at all.  While sitting  insiding monastery  we need to sit upright, facing the teacher and not to lean. We can change  posture during class and to stretch the legs but it still had to be done very mindfully. The legs could not be stretched over the dharma books and the soles of the feet could not be pointed towards the altar, the teacher or the Buddha.

inside monastery

inside monastery

deity inside monastery

deity inside monastery

After lunch we  sit for  discussion divided into different groups.  Discussion mostly focused on teaching we had in the morning on that particular day.  At 3pm-5pm we had teachings on Buddhism which focused on different topics like, ego, attachment, suffering etc.  Ghese Sherub charming face, sense of humor and remarkable teaching charmed everybody. At 5pm we had  tea break, 7:45 dinner and meditation till 8:45. We need to maintain silence all day and night.  The vegetarian food at monastery is awesome. Most fun thing is to do is dish washing after meal.

dining hall

dining hall

The retreat building is well built with clean room.  Early morning our days started with the monks chanting. There are nearly 400 monks  aged 5 to oldies. They chant, reciting mantras, debate, perform pujas with playing drums etc.  The debate is the most amazing act in which they used to debate for an hour with shouting and different mudras.

retreat building

retreat building

Green Tara

Green Tara

Deities

Deities

Buddhist teaching are worth listening. It is more useful in our day to day life. Compassion, suffering life, death, rebirth,  disturbing emotions and emptiness, ego, attachment and liberation. non virtuous of body,stealing, sexual misconduct and lying and non-virtues of speech, lying, divisive speech, harsh speech and idle gossipis what it teaching mostly focused on. It explains the teachings of Buddha and Samsara.

Avaloketshvara, Compassion Buddha

Avaloketshvara, Compassion Buddha

Deity

Deity

Avalokiteshvara

Avalokiteshvara

On the 6th day  puja held at gompa. It lasts for 2hours with heart soothing mantras and chartings. I must say Ghese Sherb voice is unbelievable. He chant mantras and sing in an incredible way. Chanting was so heart touching that I burst into tears.

monks doing prayers

monks doing prayers

8 and 9th days are completely noble silent for 48hours not even looking at each other. We did meditation walk, which was calming and new experience for me.  On the 9th day we had light offering ceremony. We offer light in complete silent remembering all sentient beings. I love noble silence, which helps you in knowing your inner self.

light offering

light offering

walk meditation

walk meditation

water flow

deities bath in water flow

crowded kathmandu

Kathmandu covered with dust

little Buddha

seven steps Buddha walk after his birth

 

Our silent ends after taking breakfast on 10th day.  Everybody start to chatter since it was last day.

Nuns after puja

Lesson learned:

To live a virtue life

 Generate compassion toward all sentient beings

 Abide in equanimity

Stay free from hatred and attachment,

Generate Bodhichitta,

Try to overcome ego and seek liberation,

 Create good karma for next rebirth and much more..

It’s not matter of religion whether to be Hindu, Christian or Muslim. Is teaches us how to become good human being and benefit all sentient beings.  My spiritual journey continues. I need to find  answer of my existence and there is a long way to go.