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Gyalwang Karmapa meets with Kagyu Monlam Volunteers

29 February, 2012


Gyalwang Karmapa met with nearly 400 volunteers of Kagyu Monlam in the main shrine room of Tergar Monastery on February 29, 2012. Volunteers began to queue outside at around 2 pm. After going through the security check, they were seated in accordance with their work teams.

Gyalwang Karmapa arrived at around 3 pm and briefly addressed the volunteers, speaking through English and Mandarin interpreters.

His Holiness said that working for the benefit of others is the path to enlightenment. Kagyu Monlam therefore is honored to offer sincere and whole-hearted people an opportunity and a platform to work for a positive cause. His Holiness said performing even one activity to benefit others in this life is worthy of great joy.

He said some were volunteering for the first time and some had done it several times. Regardless, he hoped that it would be a valuable experience and a memory to cherish.

Gyalwang Karmapa said the Kagyu Monlam prayer festival had increased in size over the years. Since it is a non-profit organization, it would not be feasible to pay the workers. In addition, His Holiness stressed paying a salary would also end up compromising the very purpose of the work, which is to serve others with a sincere heart. Rather, working as a volunteer upholds the high integrity of good people working for a spiritual activity.

His Holiness said speaking as someone who had the experience of getting involved in Kagyu Monlam, he knew that volunteers are indispensable for the success of the prayer. 

Finally, he said, considering the lifestyle of the 21st century, people are normally very busy attending to the challenges of mundane life. Therefore, it is particularly rare that people can come to work together for a common purpose without expecting any material gain whatsoever.

His Holiness wished that working here together would provide an opportunity for their restless minds to find some respite from the hectic schedule of their day-to-day lives.

To express his gratitude to the volunteers, His Holiness distributed an autographed copy of a painting of Akshobhya, he had painted himself.  Before coming to the talk, he explained, he had signed all 400 or so copies one by one, which had made him rather exhausted, which meant he had to forgo his usual practice of personally distributing the gift to each volunteer.  However, His Holiness said, he would still make time at the end of the session to have photos taken with various volunteer work teams in front of the main gate of Tergar Monastery.


Report by TseNam, photos taken by Liao Guo Ming




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