Karmapa and Thugseyla at the Europe Center

Karmapa arrives at the Europe Center

On August 1st, Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, his first child Thugseyla and wife Sangyumla, arrived at our Europe Centre. Lama Ole and a group of students were incredibly happy to welcome them late in the night.

Welcome ceremony for Karmapa and Thugseyla

More than 6,000 students from over 40 countries came to the traditional welcome ceremony for Karmapa and Thugseyla the following day. The ceremony was held in the largest meditation tent we have ever built. It was the first time Thugseyla was welcomed and introduced to the sangha, invited guests and friends at the Europe Centre.

A representative from the Europe Centre gave a speech to start the ceremony, followed by speeches from Lama Ole and Karmapa.

It was a joyful afternoon for everyone present.

Lecture on the Thirty-seven Practices of a Bodhisattva

The next day, Karmapa gave teachings on the Thirty-seven Practices of a Bodhisattva and they were keenly anticipated by all. The thousands of students in the tent were joined by approximately 50,000 people who tuned in and watched via live streaming on Facebook.

Karmapa started by giving an extensive explanation on the meaning of Refuge and Bodhicitta. After 2 hours of teachings, Karmapa continued to teach the Thirty-seven Practices of a Bodhisattva.

Avalokiteshvara (Chenresig – Loving Eyes) Empowerment

After an influx of students who traveled through the night from all over the world, almost 7,000 students gathered in the meditation tent in the morning. On August 4th, Karmapa gave the Avalokiteshvara (Chenresig) empowerment, the Buddha aspect representing enlightened compassion. Karmapa explained the various steps of the empowerment, as well as taking the time to explain their deeper meaning.

Once again it was a joyful and rich atmosphere in the tent, and Karmapa and Lama Ole spent several hours blessing everyone that received the empowerment.

At the end, Karmapa once again expressed his appreciation for Lama Ole and his activity, and gave some advice to the students that attended on how to relate to their spiritual teacher:

“If we go around looking in all corners of the world, we will not find a teacher like him. It’s your merit, and therefore cherish it the best way you can, and as we know, Buddha has always said that in order to properly cherish the teacher one must not focus on the person but on the person’s practice, on the person’s essence. So therefore, that’s something you really have to focus on, and if you do that, no matter where you turn to, the teacher will always be there. So I would like to remind all of you of that. And as I said, I’m sure we’ll see each other very soon.”

Walk around the EC with Karmapa and Thugseyla

More than 4,000 people returned to their homes on Sunday evening and Monday morning. The atmosphere at the Europe Centre was relaxed and easy going. Karmapa took Thugseyla for a walk around the grounds of the Europe Center on Monday afternoon, joined by a stream of students.

Karmapa and Thugseyla’s Departure

On Tuesday afternoon, August 6th, Karmapa, Thugseyla, Karmapas wife Sangyumla, and Karmapa’s monks and invited guests left the Europe Center. It was an honour to receive teachings and an empowerment from Karmapa at this years Summer Course. We look forward to the next time Karmapa and Thugseyla visit us again.

PS: Also take a look at this wonderful article on the Karmapa website.