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Dear <<First Name>>,

This weekend we welcome a very special guest to Jamyang Buddhist Centre Leeds - Geshe Samten, a Tibetan Buddhist monk and ritual specialist from Kopan Monastery in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Geshe-la will be running workshops, leading pujas and giving a public talk during his stay from Saturday 2nd to Wednesday 6th February. If you would like to learn from an expert how to set up your shrine, do water bowl offerings, prepare for meditation, hand mudras and chanting for Tara puja and Lama Chopa puja, or hear about the benefit of retreat, then read on for details of the events we have planned.

Geshe Samten will also be joining us on for Lama Chopa puja for Losar (Tibetan New Year) and Lama Yeshe Day on the evening of Tuesday 5th February. We hope you will join us as we make prayers and offerings to the Lamas of this tradition in this special year for Jamyang Buddhist Centre Leeds.

Much love from the JBCL team. 

Events with Geshe Samten at Jamyang Leeds

Geshe Samten is a Tibetan Buddhist monk from Kopan Monastery in Kathmandhu, Nepal. Geshe-la has completed many of his own retreats and has been the resident monk at Land of Joy, the FPMT UK Retreat Centre in Northumbria for the last year, helping with the ritual side of retreats, such as making tormas and setting up fire pujas. This spring Geshe Samten  returns to Nepal, so we are fortunate he is visiting Jamyang Leeds to share his knowledge before he leaves the UK. Read on for the programme of events with Geshe-la.
Preparing for Meditation & Green Tara puja - Sat 2 Feb,10.30-16.30  

A shrine or alter in Tibetan Buddhism is a physical representation that reminds us of the qualities that we want to develop. It also acts as a base in the presence of which we can meditate, make offerings to the Buddhas, do purification practices and so on. Many Buddhist have a small shrine at home, a quiet place to reflect on the teachings and engage in their own spiritual practice.

On this workshop, Geshe Samten and JBCL Director Kerry Prest will explain how to set up a shrine and the meaning behind the different elements, before explaining the preparatory practices to meditation that prepare our environment, bodies, and minds to be open to the presence of the enlightened ones. Geshe Samten will also show us how to make water bowl offerings that help us to develop a generous, giving state of mind and get the best from our meditation practice.

In the afternoon Geshe Samten will teach kriya mudras (symbolic hand gestures used in a puja or prayer ceremony) before leading a Tara sadhana. A sadhana is a text describing a guided meditation that helps to strengthens our connection with the enlightened qualities of all the Buddhas.

Suggested donation £25. For more information and to book click here

Lama Chopa Practice Day - Sun 3 Feb, 10.30 to 16.30 
Lama Chopa is a practice of guru devotion special to the Gelugpa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. In Sanskrit, lama is guru, and chopa is offering, so Lama Chopa translates into English as “offering to the spiritual guide.” 

On this workshop, Geshe Samten will show how to set up the gompa and shrine for Lama Chopa and explain the details of the rituals associated with the practice. He will also teach the mudras (sacred hand gestures) associated with this practice and for those with HYT initiation, how to use the vajra and bell, symbolic representations of wisdom and compassion.

Geshe Samten will then lead the Lama Chopa puja, with necessary pauses to explain the meaning and how to do the puja correctly.

It is not necessary to have received a HYT initiation to attend this workshop. Geshe Samten will explain how to do this practice if you have not. Suggested workshop donation £25. For more information and to book, click here.

Lama Chopa Puja for Losar & Lama Yeshe Day, Tues 5 Feb, 18.30 to 20:30

Lama Chopa (Offering to the Spiritual Guide) is a devotional practice in Tibetan Buddhism. During the puja (chanted prayer ceremony) we make requests and offerings to all the spiritual guides of our tradition, beginning with Shakyamuni Buddha and extending to our present teachers and Lamas who have shown us the path to mental peace, happiness and spiritual enlightenment. We request all the Spiritual Guides to bless our minds with the same realisations that they themselves have cultivated. By offering sincere, heartfelt requests in this way our minds receive the full blessings of this precious lineage and quickly actualise the realisations of the path.

Tuesday 5th February is the start of Losar, the Tibetan New Year. For the FPMT, Losar is also a special time as it commemorates the anniversary of FPMT founder Lama Thubten Yeshe’s parinirvana (passing away) at dawn of Losar in 1984. Lama Zopa Rinpoche asks Dharma students and practitioners to offer Lama Chöpa with tsog in honor of this anniversary.

This Losar marks thirty-five years since the passing of Lama Yeshe and we welcome students old and new, and all those who have respect and appreciation of the kindness, compassion and immense contribution Lama Yeshe has made in bringing Tibetan Buddhism to the West, to join us in prayers and devotion to our dear Spiritual Guides.

All are welcome - you can join in or just sit and enjoy the puja. If you would like to contribute to the offerings for the shrine and tsog (for example biscuits, fruit, flowers) then please arrive 20 mins early so you can place them on the shrine before the start of the puja. For more information, click here

Image: Lama Thubten Yeshe.

The Benefit of Retreat – Talk and Q&A with Geshe Samten Wednesday February 6, 18:30 - 20:00 

Image: a young Lama Zopa Rinpoche meditating
Meditation lies at the heart of Tibetan Buddhism.  Retreat, even very short retreats of one or two days, are essential to personal transformation on the Buddhist path. Retreat enables us to go deeper into our meditation practice to develop positive, far-reaching and all-encompassing attitudes and to face up to and deal with the mental patterns we all have that hinder rather than help us to live life to our full potential and achieve happiness. 

“Why is retreat important? In order for our spirituality, pure morality, wisdom, single-pointed concentration and insight into reality to grow, we need time and space. The normal twentieth-century environment does not give us this. It induces either distraction or sluggishness, and retreat can take us beyond both. As human beings, we have the potential for unlimited growth, for limitless compassion and wisdom, bodhicitta and the six perfections. So retreat is very important in expediting this.” Lama Thubten Yeshe

Suggested donation £6. To find out more and to book, click here.
Spring Retreat - How to Discover Our True Nature with Ven. Robina Courtin, 12-18 April 2019
Don't miss this amazing opportunity to deepen your understanding and experience of Mahamudra, our true nature with Ven. Robina Courtin.

Ven. Robina will show us how to overcome distraction and rest in meditative stillness on the clarity of one’s own mind, and then by using a subtle wisdom, to penetrate its ultimate nature, its emptiness.

Ven. Robina’s teaching style is exhilarating, entertaining and thought provoking, allowing beginners as well as longtime students of Buddhism to get a taste of the meaning of Buddha's profound wisdom teachings.

Suitable for those with some experience of Tibetan Buddhism. For more information and to book click here.

Jamyang Buddhist Centre Leeds is affiliated to the FPMT
Registered Charity Number: 1109242

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Jamyang Buddhist Centre Leeds · 12 York Place · Leeds, LS1 2DS · United Kingdom

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