Having made my first visit to Kagyu Samye Ling Monastery and Tibetan Buddhist Centre with the express purpose of attending a talk by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, my second visit, a few months later, was to find out more about the Centre itself. Driving through the soft, green rolling hills of Southern Scotland one is suddenly confronted by the spectacular temple and stupa with their glinting copper roofs and steeple bedecked by a profusion of colourful, fluttering prayer flags like some exotic, psychedelic mirage rising out of the Scottish mist.
As the first and largest Centre of Tibetan Buddhism in the West, Samye Ling has grown from modest beginnings, since two young refugee Lamas acquired a rather dilapidated old hunting lodge in Dumfriesshire, to become a world renowned Monastery and Centre of Tibetan Buddhist culture with satellite branches across the globe. Its magnificent temple was built and decorated entirely by volunteer labour under the direction the Centre’s co-founder Dr. Akong Tulku Rinpoche.
Entering the elaborate scarlet and gold shrine room for the first time Continue reading
Hello to all the readers of Many Roads.
Up here in Scotland the days are becoming colder and the nights longer. Out come the warm clothes, hats, gloves, thermals and scarves. That’s how it is in the autumnal, northern hemisphere. The scattering of leaves on the pavements adds a certain melancholic poignancy to the season.
There is a feeling that we are in for a long, cold winter.
However, a warm thanks to the readers who have posted comments on the published articles. Your thoughts are welcome.
Several new articles have been published recently. There has been positive feedback on Anni Dibble’s heart-felt article A Tribute to Akong Rinpoche.
Dr Sangeeta Rajbhandary has written about the recent festival of Ghantakarna in Kathmandu. There is very little separation between Buddhist and Hindus in the valley, thus the Hindu/Buddhist in the title.
The Ten Commandments for Foreign Travel in India by Upasana Pokhriyal contains some invaluable advice for both seasoned and new travellers in India, and especially for women in the context of recent events in the country.
And Ani Rinchen Khandro, a nun based at Samye Dzong in Edinburgh, has written an account of her discovery of Buddhism in her article Approaching Buddhism, and her subsequent experience on retreat and after on Holy Island.
Mail Chimp sends out any new articles on a weekly basis to subscribers. If you haven’t already subscribed, you can do this at the bottom of the About tab on the Many Roads site.
Wishing everyone a peaceful and relaxed time this coming season and hoping to hear from you soon.
Ani Rinchen Khandro recounts years living in South-East Asia and her life as a Buddhist nun at Kagyu Samye Ling monastery.
Having been born in Manchester to parents of Jewish and Catholic origins I was brought up in a Jewish household and even attended a Jewish school where Hebrew was part of the curriculum. As with many young people my teenage years were a time of rebellion, searching for and asserting my identity. In a state of confusion and uncertainty Agnosticism seemed to be the only honest position to take.