His Holiness Gyalwang Karmapa Concludes Six-Day Tour of Mundgod Tibetan Settlement

South Zone Kagyudpa Buddhist Council, March 6, 2005

Mundgod, Tibet (China) -- Mundgod Doeguling Tibetan Settlement consists of nine Camps, one old Age home, one Senior Secondary School and several primary, junior and middle Schools besides major monasteries and nunnery in a total population of 14,000 Tibetans.

During the program, His Holiness touched the Heart of each and every individual young and old, monks and laymen and different schools of Tibetan Buddhism.

March 1-2, 2005
His Holiness began his first program of the day by visiting Central School for Tibetans in camp no. 6 where the Students accorded him an impressive welcome. His Holiness advised the teachers and the students to sincerely follow and practice the advise of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

His Holiness visited Drepung Lachi, Gaden Lachi, Drepung Loselling Drasang, Gomang dratsang, Ganden shartse, Ganden Jangtse, Ratoe Dratsang, Sakya and Nyingma Monastery. While praising the progress of flourishing dharma activities, he stresses the Sanga community to continue to strive towards preservation and propagation of Tibetan Buddhist Dharma in general and in particular the great tradition set by Je-Tsongkhapa. He also stressed the importance of unity of all schools of Buddhism and work as per the guidance of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

March 3, 2005
An overwhelming gathering of public of all ages attended the conferment of the first empowerment which began by 9 am and concluded at 11.30 a.m. The organizer had made every effort for the comfort of the devotees by providing beautiful Shamiyana shelters. Inspite of the heat, for the public, this was a lifetime experience for them.

His Holiness awarded certificates to the students of the Bokar Institute for Higher Buddhist studies and the people of camp 6,7 & 8 performed a very colorful cultural program.
His Holiness's visit to the old age home was very touching as he asked them if they remember Tibet. He encouraged them to pray for Tibet and assured to remember them in his prayers.

March 4, 2005
Two impressive welcome gates on his way to Drekung Dechen Choeku Ling Monastery, where the Spiritual Director HE Ayang Rinpoche was leading his traditional monastic reception, warmly received his Holiness. People were standing with khatas and flowers in hands. Later in the afternoon, His Holiness bestowed Mahaguru Padmasambhava empowerment to the public. His Holiness stayed at this monastery for the rest of his tour in Mundgod.
The day concluded with a most colorful traditional performance by the Ronjong community. They sang old folk songs in reverence of His Holiness and offered a very special Rongjong loaf of bread, which is traditionally offered to King or a very high Lama.

March 5, 2005
Besides visiting Thodhing monastery, Jangchub Choeling Nunery and old age Home in camp No 3, His Holiness's major program was giving Avaloketeshwara Initiation to the public. He expressed his happiness and satisfaction over the collective efforts of the people for preserving traditional Tibetan culture. While thanking them for the determination, he reminded the people that we still have much more task ahead and have to work hard towards achieving the common goal. He advised the public that the objectives of life couldn't be forgotten in the race for making money. He encouraged the youngsters to look after their parents and take care of their needs, especially, when they are old which is an important part of our culture.

Realizing the visit of His Holiness Karmapa to Mundgod, His Holiness Ling Rinpoche canceled his previously planned visit to Ajanta and Elora and purposely received him and hosted a lunch in honor of the visit.

March 6, 2005
The major event of the day is a visit to the Senior Secondary residential School, which has strength of 1045 students and 75 teachers and staff. After proposing a welcome address by the principal Mrs Tharlam Dolma, His Holiness spoke to the students.

He highlighted the importance of both modern and traditional education. He also said that in spite of lack of facilities in Tibet, many scholars and eminent scholars are produced today. Therefore, he urged the students to understand the balance between traditional and modern education. He advised them to take care of their health and avoid unnecessary habits such as using drugs, which only brings problem and misery to self and others.

His Holiness concludes the visit of the first Tibetan settlement with great success and will continue to visit four other settlements.
South Zone Kagyu Buddhist Council, the host of this visit hosted a dinner followed by cultural program to mark the happy conclusion of the visit to Mundgod.

His Holiness will arrive at Bangalore on the 7th on his way to Kollegal. At Bangalore His Holiness will be received by the Chief Representative and settlement officer of the exile Government, Representatives of Bangalore Mahabodhi Society, NGO's and the heads of different monasteries. He will also interact briefly with the local media at the Hotel Leela Palace, before he proceeds to Kollegal by road.