Thupten Tsundue (front) and other monks wishing you a happy Tibetan new year.
Thupten Tsundue (front) and other monks wishing you a happy Tibetan new year.

Prosperity in the Tibetan new year

The Gyoto monks of Tibet will be celebrating Losar, the Tibetan New Year, with a five day ceremony at Repentance Creek Hall in Rosebank.

For the first time ever in Australia they will be conducting Zhambhala, a traditional ceremony that aims to bring good fortune and prosperity by creating specific karma that will ease material suffering and free people to pursue the spiritual life.

Traditionally, the community brings items symbolic of prosperity like the wool of a hundred sheep, the hair of a hundred horses, plants, soil, water, various grains, and so on. But the North Coast community is invited to bring items that have a personal symbolic representation of abundance, and in more modest quantities.

The objects will be incorporated into the ceremony and then, at the conclusion, locked into a wealth essence box that will be kept safely for the ongoing welfare of the community.

In addition to participating in the preparation for the ritual, people will be able to take part in meditation workshops, public talks and art classes.

One of the monks visiting Australia for the first time is Thupten Tsundue, who was in Lhasa when the Chinese attacked in 1959.

“At the moment we are making a film of the old monks, the last of the ones that escaped from Tibet... The fact we’ve got him here is extraordinary,” Gyoto House director Maureen Fallon said. “He is an extraordinary story teller... He has been telling us hair raising tales about how he saw 900 of his colleagues killed and how he made his escape into India and because he was a young man at the time, he was sent back to Tibet to bring these two older monks out.”

Losar celebrations begin on Friday, February 12, with a ritual clearing ceremony from 10am. People are asked to bring their offerings on Saturday.

For a full program of events visit www.gyuto.va.com.au


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