Local Church Excited for Lama Rinpoche's Visit

Daily Journal, Jul 27, 2008

Charlottesville, VA (USA) -- The word Lama, in the Tibetan Buddhist Tradition, means "teacher," and while the Dalai Lama is one of the best-known spiritual figures in the world, he works alongside several other Lamas, teaching humanity.

The venerable Doboom Rinpoche has worked alongside the Dalai Lama for 35 years. With his holiness making a well-publicized American visit, Rinpoche is taking time to teach folks here in Charlottesville.

"It's the larger theme that applies for all of us. It's how to create a more peaceful, more harmonious world in our communities and in our world at large," said Dr. Sandra Newhouse, of the Jefferson Tibetan Society.

The Jefferson Tibetan Society and Unity Church are preparing to host the venerable Doboom Rinpoche, a Lama and close friend of his holiness.

It is a visit and a message, they say, that transcends religious denominations.

"Unity Church is an inclusive church. It's culturally Christian, but we're very, very open to people of different faiths and different traditions," said Reverend Donald A. Lansky.

Doboom Rinpoche will hold three sessions Monday at Unity Church, and while church leadership admits they are excited about the visit, they are even more excited about some of the insights they will gain from Lama Rinpoche.

"The Dalai Lama does emphasize that it is not necessary to become Buddhist in order to benefit from the teachings; that there is a lot of Buddhist teachings that can be utilized by people of all faiths," said Dr. Newhouse.

Church members say this visit will be made even more special by the fact that Doboom Rinpoche actually speaks English. Often times these types of visits can be ceremonial, but with no language barriers in the way, people are ready to learn.

The Dalai Lama himself has been to Charlottesville on multiple occasions. Next year will mark the 13th anniversary of his first visit.