Last week, soil samples from deep within the land at KC16 were taken as the next step for our engineers and architects to move forward with foundation plans. The contractors gave us the surplus soil, which Drupon Rinpoche and the Lamas on site have been using to construct small Guru Rinpoche statues from the blessed land. They say the soil is so good that nothing extra was needed to hold it together or be strong enough to create the statues. Due to the blessings of the land as the Parinirvana site of His Holiness the 16th Karmapa, and being blessed by the 17th Karmapa, this earth is saturated with blessings!
Reminder! KC16 is co-hosting Tara Drupchen with Nalandabodhi International/Nalandabodhi Seattle and Nalanda West from September 24-27. The Tara Drupchen will be especially dedicated to overcoming the current pandemic, to all beings suffering directly or indirectly from it, and to dispelling fear in our world. For registration information email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
“The 16th Gyalwang Karmapa seldom gave Dharma teachings through words but taught intensively through physical gestures and tamed beings through his mere presence. One of his major activities was to liberate all those who saw him … so there is undoubtedly great value in any visual connection made with him.”*
— His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa
During this difficult time of the global coronavirus pandemic, we can find solace and inspiration by seeing images, watching videos, and perhaps recalling one’s own experience of His Holiness the 16th Karmapa. His spontaneous and joyous actions benefited beings wherever and in whatever way conditions permitted, despite any obstacles.
We are pleased to present a way to visually connect with the 16th Karmapa by sharing photographs and videos about him. Contemplating his life and the lives of other lineage masters can benefit our mind stream and help us find the courage to open our hearts as we move through distressing times. When we benefit ourselves in this way, we are better equipped to support others both directly and indirectly.
We hope these offerings about His Holiness are indeed uplifting and an inspiration for yourself, your family, friends, colleagues and communities. We will soon include new ways to share acts of kindness so that those positive actions may ripple outward to be felt far and wide.
This week’s video features James Gimian, who first became involved with Buddhism in 1972, as a student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Two years later, he held a lead role during His Holiness the 16th Karmapa’s first visit to the United States for the ten day Dharma Festival in San Francisco, in 1974. In the video interview Mr. Gimian, who is the publisher of Mindful Magazine, describes how His Holiness was a vital catalyst for introducing Buddhism to the West by facilitating “the diaspora of the teachings coming to the west.”
Knowing that His Holiness was instrumental in the blossoming of Buddhism in Western culture, Mr. Gimian also recognizes how the Stupa in Wadsworth, in the Heartland of America, will serve as “ground zero for the dharma becoming deeply rooted in North American soil.”
The story of His Holiness’ positive influences on those who cared for him at the end of his life in Illinois, reminds us of the power we all have to make a difference in the lives of others and vice versa. It made us think with tremendous gratitude and prayers for the safety of the millions of brave and selfless pandemic healthcare workers around the world. We can also follow His Holiness’ example and express gratitude, kindness, joy, generosity, and compassion in our everyday interactions regardless of challenging circumstances. We can be the positive change we all long for.
We give great thanks to everyone who has generously donated to help bring this vision to fruition by supporting our campaign for the Stupa. While the campaign will continue through June, we understand that making a donation is not possible for many at this time. Should you be able to give or feel moved to support the campaign at any point, your gift will be gratefully received.
We wish you all good health and well being, and look forward to sharing more about His Holiness with you next week.
*Excerpted from Dharma King: The Life of the 16th Karmapa in Images
The Karmapa Center 16 was honored to receive a visit from His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, August 30–September 1 in Wadsworth, Illinois. His Holiness arrived early evening on Thursday August 30th. Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, Dilyak Drupon Rinpoche, staff and friends of KC16 were overjoyed to receive His Holiness and His Entourage for tea and rice followed by dinner.
His Holiness came to make a good auspicious connection for the success of the building of the Parinirvana Stupa for His Holiness the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje. On the bright sunny morning of Friday, August 31st the 17th Karmapa conducted a smoke puja and planted an evergreen in an auspicious location near the future stupa site. A sun halo sparkled overhead as devotees relaxed in the fields and gardens after the event.
KC16 hosted a dinner on Friday evening to the music of sandhill cranes and cicadas. Wadsworth Mayor Glenn Ryback, Board Trustees Doug Jacobs and Jim Zegar along with local friends and supporters enjoyed conversation, laughter and dining on the lawn with the 17th Karmapa, Ponlop Rinpoche and Drupon Rinpoche.
His Holiness returned for lunch on Saturday to give some words of advice for the project.
Photos courtesy of Lama Tenzin Namdak, Acharya Lama Jampa and Damayonti Sengupta.
The Karmapa Center 16 is pleased to announce that at the end of May we successfully purchased the beautiful 10-acre prairie land, farmhouse and outbuildings in Wadsworth, Illinois! Blessed by His Holiness the 17th Karmapa, the future site of the parinirvana stupa dedicated to His Holiness the 16th Karmapa is one major step closer to fruition.
Sincere thanks to all of you whose incredible generosity enabled the secondchallenge grant success thereby achieving the funding goal for the land purchase. Phase One of the three-phase project is now complete. How marvelous and auspicious!
As previously announced, thanks to all of your contributions so far, we are 86% of the way to our goal of purchasing the land for The Karmapa Center 16 memorial stupa hall.
We are now thrilled to announce that another generous donor and her company have offered a $100,000 Challenge Grant for the remaining funds to purchase the land and cover operating costs for the first half of the 2016! We have two months from January 31st to meet this challenge, or until March 31, 2016, during which period any donation will be doubled by this kind benefactor.
We gratefully celebrate the wonderful auspicious connections that have already made with His Holiness the 16th Karmapa and the project to memorialize his life and activity at the location of his Parinirvana.
We ask that you please continue to help spread the word to anyone who may share a connection with or interest in this project. Be part of this unique and auspicious endeavor—please help us meet this challenge!
We have an incredible opportunity to purchase the Wadsworth, IL land located 5 miles west of the 16th Karmapa’s parinirvana at the cancer center and blessed by the 17th Karmapa. We invite you to join us in this auspicious undertaking to establish this pilgrimage site in North America!
As we complete ecological and traffic studies to prepare for the county and village meetings and permit approval process, we are simultaneously fundraising to purchase the land. To date, approximately $300,000 has been raised…
in order to close on this property, we require an additional $650,000 by October 31, 2015.
How can I help, you ask?
We’re so very glad you did! There are several ways to make a connection to the project and contribute meaningfully:
The preliminary draft plans drawn by architect Keith Spruce show that the parinirvana stupa will be on the western third of the ten-acre property. The 30 foot stupa will be enclosed by a building with the entrance facing east towards the cancer center. This stupa and meditation hall will offer seating for over 100 meditators and enable circumambulation around the stupa from the inside as well as the outside. The current proposal includes windows around the top portion of the stupa in order to be visible from the outside.
The current 17th Gyalwang Karmapa continues to employ ethical programs for living in harmony with the environment, such as the Khoryug Environmental Protection Program: Khoryug Vision. To this extent, our goals include environmental conservation and sustainable environmentally responsible practices proposed wherever possible for new construction, remodeling or removal of buildings proposed on this site. For example, we are considering uses of gray-water recycling, composting toilets & dry urinals, green roofs, natural native landscaping, natural storm water retention and processing on-site, pervious pavement areas, low-energy use buildings utilizing passive and active energy conservation system, among other considerations. Our intention is to minimize the impact on the natural environment as much as possible while restoring and harmonizing our proposed site development plans with the natural rural surroundings and improvements.
We have located a lovely 10-acre property in Wadsworth, IL 5 miles almost directly west of the cancer center. We are leasing the property with option to buy with successful completion of appropriate studies, permits and approval of the Wadsworth Village Board.
The property includes an existing single-family and caretaker’s house where we Lamas and religious workers reside. In the back third of the land is where we are planning the building of the stupa.