Khenpo Tsering teaching at the EC

EC Blog News & Reports

Khenpo Tsering teaching at the EC

September 26th, 2013

Only a few weeks after the Summer course, we had the honour of listening to even more deep and advanced Buddhist teachings. Khenpo Tsering Sambdrub visited the EC for a few days, elaborating on the “Treatise on Buddha Nature” by a Master of Mahamudra, the 3rd Karmapa Rangjung Dorje in four consecutive lectures in the Diamond Room.

Khenpo Tsering was born and raised in India. His family descends from Kham in Eastern Tibet. Khenpo Tsering studied at Karma Shri Nalanda Institute for Advanced Buddhist Studies in Rumtek Monastery under the guidance of Khenpo Chodrak Tenphel Rinpoche. Since 2007 he is the main instructor at K.I.B.I. (Karmapa International Buddhist Institute), appointed to this position by Shamar Rinpoche. He is also responsible for the Shri Diwakar Vihara Buddhist Institute in Kalimpong. At the beginning of the 90s, Hannah Nydahl invited Khenpo Tsering to teach in the Diamond Way Centers around the world. Currently he resides in the United States.

We were impressed with Khenpo’s way of transmitting his deep knowledge to us. He gave his teachings in excellent English, combined with humour and practical examples applicable in our modern world. Coinciding with the beginning of the meditation retreat and Lama Ole’s arrival, the atmosphere at the EC was very family-like and joyful: no matter where you looked in the houses, there were small groups of friends meditating together in the breaks and exchanging about the teachings during the mealtimes.

As a small token of our appreciation, we offered Khenpo a small statue of the Wisdom Bodhisattva Manjushri. Khenpo praised the beauty of our Europe Center and since he indicated this, we are pretty sure that he will be back to give more teachings – hopefully soon!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

Buddhist art arrived at the Europe Center in a big way – for several weeks we happily hosted a master of the art of thangka painting: Dawa Lhadripa. He joined us for the Summer Course and stayed on to paint a new version of the Karma Kagyu Refuge Tree thangka (Tibetan scroll painting) ordered for our meditation centers and practitioners by the Diamond Way Buddhism Foundation.

Years ago H.H. 17th Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje asked Dawa to bring his painting mastery to the West. Among his work in the West to date are the impressive paintings in the Thaye Dorje meditation hall in Karma Guen, Spain and the oval paintings above the doors of the Yellow Room at the Europe Center.

The Karma Kagyu Refuge Tree depicts all of the important teachers, buddha aspects, liberating teachings, bodhisattvas and protectors of the Karma Kagyu transmission lineage containing over 150 figures with numerous details and symbols. Dawa received instructions on this complex painting from H.H. 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, Shamar Rinpoche, Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche and Lama Ole Nydahl. The complete structure was put together over the course of several years and finalized this summer by lama Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche during his European tour, adding his deep knowledge about the details of the different buddha aspects.

Dawa’s current work is a great example of collaboration between East and West. Once finished, it will be not only be used  for meditation in Diamond Way Buddhist centers from Vladivostok to San Francisco, but will also be available to all Karma Kagyu practitioners around the globe who wish to have it. Thus this ancient Buddhist art produced in the West will find its way back to the East where it originated from.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

The Alpsee lake network barbecue

September 13th, 2013

The network of people living and working around and on the Alpsee lake in Immenstadt is growing constantly – and we love to be part of it!

Thanks to our friend and main organizer Claudius, the Alpsee captains and diligent voluntary helpers, we spent another very nice evening with our neighbours last week. By now The network meets several times a year in different places, bringing people together and creating and deepening lots of wonderful connections. This time we had the honour of inviting everyone to come for one of our legendary barbecues run by our chefs Sonia and Laci. Our architects Philip and Tamas guided a tour of the new building’s construction site and the villa for our guests. It turned into a long and joyful night in the Baucafé overviewing the lake connecting us, with lively conversation and a lot of fun together.

Thank you, dear neighbours – looking forward to seeing you again soon!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

On one of the most perfect Allgäu summer days imaginable, we were very happy to witness and celebrate the big day of yet another couple that is very close to our hearts and the EC – Alex and Patric!

The stunning bride, a second generation Buddhist and professional management consultant, moved to Allgäu three years ago and was a resident of the EC until… she fell in love with the handsome groom! He is an architect who was at that point still living in Hamburg. Even though they already met many years ago at the first Buddhist Center in Hamburg, it took Allgäu to fall in love. But then things sped up – they moved together into a beautiful flat in central Immenstadt and are both very actively supporting the Europe Center. Patric is our liaison between the building owner and the foreman – our communication channel.

The Europe Center team would like to wish the newlyweds all the best for their future together – may they joyfully develop together and inspire their surroundings even more than they have been doing over the past already!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

The annual International Summer Course kept the Europe Center busy during July and August. While we were busy with the course the building site actually never stopped working so every visitor had a chance to see it in full motion. With things calming down after these two intense months, we are returning our focus to the construction.

Since our last update there has been quite some progress. The first thing that you will notice is that the concrete wall supporting the hill behind the building is almost done and it will be finished during the next couple of days. The excavation works will continue only for about two more weeks and then the full focus will be on building up instead of digging down.

The visible parts slowly start to look like an actual building. The sanitary area under the old horse stable has got walls and a ceiling and the foundation is partly connected to the original foundation of the barn. We are only days away from finishing the new ground floor concrete slab and the pillars in the brasserie (the former ground floor of the barn) and the tubing of the future kitchen is in place. One can already see two seminar rooms in the new building and a part of the future dormitory.

Things are starting to take shape and before long we will have a full fledged and finished raw build! For many more pictures and frequent updates, please visit our Construction Illustrated – the EC building site gallery.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

Once again, we would like to let the pictures do the talking and thank everyone who made this year’s Summer Course an event that is going to be remembered and treasured for a long time.

See you again next year, and hopefully even earlier – needless to mention you are welcome at the Europe Center all year around!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

Following the lectures about the new refuge tree, Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche gave teachings about the invocation of the main protector of the Karma Kagyu Lineage of Diamond Way Buddhism, Black Coat (tib. Bernagchen, skt. Mahakala) and offered an empowerment into this Buddha aspect on the final weekend of the course.

Word by word, Rinpoche amazed everyone with the most detailed explanations about this sung meditation practiced daily in over 600 Diamond Way Centers around the world. The invocation is sung in Tibetan after public meditation sessions. This particular text was composed by the 8th Karmapa Mikyö Dorje (1507–1554) and is part of the daily longer Mahakala Puja practiced in all Karma Kagyu monasteries.

Black Coat embodies the love and protective activity of mind. A powerfully-protective emanation of Loving Eyes, the Bodhisattva of Compassion, he may look scary to some – but the wisdom eye in is forehead shows that he is completely free of anger. He protects the Buddhist teachings with his powerful expression, defends the Dharma, guides and protects Buddhist practitioners from all kinds of inner and outer obstacles and gives them the power to overcome life’s challenges.

We would like to thank Rinpoche and Lama Ole Nydahl for sharing their deep wisdom with us once again during the whole course, which for sure is going to strengthen our meditation practice and inspired us deeply on many levels!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

One of the questions asked frequently by people visiting for the first time when they see the impressive infrastructure and coordination of the Summer Course is “And you really don’t pay anyone here?!?”.

Actually, we do not. The whole course organisation is based on the voluntary work of hundreds of people. Whenever the course participants like, they can go to the job center in the dining tent, check where helpers are needed for which activities and sign up to help. At the same time, for instance, the kitchen team tells the job center how many people they need at which time for e.g. vegetable chopping for lunch.

Just to give you an idea how many different activities are going on throughout the course, here are a few of them: food serving, meal preparations, cleaning after the meals, cleaning bathrooms and toilets many times per day, emptying the garbage bins, babysitting, preparing the meditation tent for the next session, translating, shuttling hundreds of visitors, selling at the cafeteria or the mini supermarket, scrubbing the old bricks of the barn so we can use them in the future brasserie… and many many more. Over the two weeks of the summer course, more than 5000 helpers are involved in making it happen.

Thank you so much for your joyful effort!

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

One of the highlights of this year’s Summer Course were Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche‘s explanations about the new refuge tree.

The refuge tree is a traditional way of depicting the Buddhist refuge. This particular refuge is specific to the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism: It shows the Three Jewels: Buddha, Dharma (the teachings), Sangha (the realized Bodhisattvas) as well as the Three Roots: Lamas, Yidams and Protectors. It is very detailed and shows not only the most important aspects of the refuge but also the whole transmission lineage of the Karma Kagyu lineage.

For three consecutive days, Rinpoche patiently elaborated on each of the many buddha aspects, including minute details. Based on these deep teachings, renowned Thangka painter Dawa from Nepal is going to start painting the final version of the new refuge tree right after the Summer course at the Europe Center. The painting work is going to take several months and we will keep you updated about the progress. Once done, the new refuge tree thangka is going to be used for meditation both in the East and in the West.

 ”The difference between a Buddhist and a non-Buddhist is whether one has taken refuge or not. Whoever has taken refuge—that means has confidence in Buddha, Dharma and Sangha—is a Buddhist.”

— Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche —

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis

Be part of it!

August 17th, 2013

moreEC: more space for meditation, teachings and friends at the Europe Center! To help us raise the required funds for the new buildings, the moreEC stand at the Summer Course helps everyone to be part of it! :)

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis