(Links to all Winter Season opportunities at bottom – May All Benefit!)
Wherever you live in this wide world, the winter season is a season of giving. Whether it’s the holidays of Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, or New Year’s, there is joy and light in the midst of winter darkness.
At KTD Monastery, the winter season brings a focus on group practice of the dharma, making offerings and prayers for the benefit of all sentient beings.
And where there are prayers and offerings, there is a tremendous opportunity to make merit.
Merit is sometimes defined as “good karma,” but another way to think about it is as “a virtuous mind state.” When we praise the qualities of the Buddha or other enlightened beings; when we offer lamps or flowers or food to consecrated statues or stupas containing the relics of awakened beings; when we pray and meditate, we cultivate a positive, virtuous state of mind. According to Buddhist teachings, this positive virtuous mind is the basis for the growth and development of love, compassion, and wisdom, and the achievement of awakening.
WINTER: A SEASON OF PRACTICE AT KTD
The Drupchod Retreats
Every winter, KTD hosts two major Drupchod (practice offering) retreats – the annual Three-Year Retreat Drupchod in early December, and the Amitabha Retreat from Dec. 27 through Dec. 31.
During the Three-Year Retreat Drupchod, graduate lamas of the Karme Ling Three-Year Retreat Center meet at KTD for seven full days of ceremonies. There is daily practice of one of the three main yidam buddhas of the Karma Kagyu tradition – Vajrayogini, Chakrasamvara, or Ginasagara (Ocean of Victors, Red Chenrezig).
The Amitabha Retreat
The yearly Amitabha Retreat is a five-day practice offering of ceremonies invoking the Buddha of Boundless Light, Amitabha. It includes longevity practice, protector practice, and a yearly Jangchok – an “Inscription Ritual” in which the names of the deceased and the living are ritually cleansed, empowered, and blessed.
Both retreats include daily Tsok (gathering) feasts and special meals for participants. These retreats serve to consecrate the environment, accumulate merit, purify negativities, and benefit beings.
In addition, KTD also offers a special prayer and offering event on New Year’s Day (January 1) each year called “First Light,” where 108 lamps are offered with special prayers and ceremonies for goodness in the New Year.
Each of these events offers unique opportunities to participate in the merit. Those who cannot attend can participate by making offerings and supporting meals for those in attendance.
SPONSORSHIP DETAILED INFORMATION 2015-16
November 29 – December 5
Gyalwa Gyamtso Drupchod