Lama Samten to attend Tahoe's Tibetan cultural festival

Tahoe Daily Tribune, Aug 22, 2008

Buddhist monk will make mandala

Lake Tahoe, Utah -- Lama Losang Samten invited all to the Tibetan Cultural Festival from Aug. 25-29 at the Valhalla Grand Hall at the Tallac Historic Site, saying "You can't get a visa to Tibet, so skip it and come to Tibet in Tahoe."

<< Tibetan Lama Losang Samten creates a sand mandala. File pix

In 2006, Samten created a sand mandala of compassion, in 2007 he created the Wheel of Life mandala, and this year he will create the Medicine Buddha sand mandala. An expert in the art of the traditional Tibetan sand painting, Samten said he chose the Medicine Buddha for a couple of reasons.

"Healing is important in all of us. I've had some of my closest friends pass away in the past year. Also, the state of the world and the situation in Tibet and China have many in hardship. This mandala is the Buddha of Healing, and can help the individual, the community and the world by spreading forgiveness, compassion and patience."

Samten was born in Tibet, fleeing with his family to Nepal, and then to northern India, to escape the Chinese government when he was 5 years old. He began studies to become a monk as a child. He was the personal attendant to the Dali Lama for five years.

Creation of the Medicine Buddha sand mandala will begin after the opening ceremonies at 11 a.m. on Aug. 25 on the Valhalla Grand Hall lawn.

For a schedule of events and information, go to or call (530) 525-1900.