Karmapa to attend Buddhist prayer in Bodh Gaya

NewKerala, Jan 6, 2006

Patna, India -- The 17th Karmapa, the spiritual head of the Kagyu sect of Tibetan Buddhists, will attend an eight-day prayer beginning Saturday in Bodh Gaya in Bihar, the birthplace of Buddhism.

A spokesperson of Tibetan Buddhists said here that the 17th Karmapa, Ugyen Trinley Dorje will begin the Kagyu Monlam Chenmo Puja of Tibetan Buddhists from Saturday at the Mahabodhi Mahavihara, the holiest temple of Buddhists in Bodh Gaya.

Hundreds of Buddhist Lamas, monks and other devotees from various parts of India and abroad would participate in the puja.

Bodh Gaya, about 110 km from here, is where the Buddha attained enlightenment 2,500 years ago.

The Karmapa has been staying in India as a guest since 2000 when he fled the Tsurfu Monastery in Tibet by giving a slip to the Chinese authorities. After his escape, he took shelter with the spiritual head of Tibetan Buddhists, the Dalai Lama at Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh.

The Karmapa arrived Thursday in Bodh Gaya from Sarnath. The Gaya district administration has made elaborate security arrangements in view of threats to his life.

The DIG of Magadh range Arvind Pandey said that security had been tightened for his visit. The Karmapa would stay in Bodh Gaya till the completion of the puja on January 14.

The Rumtek monastery in Sikkim, the traditional seat of the Karmapa, is the headquarters of the Kagyu sect.