This Friday, Lama Lakshey Zangpo came to the MDC to pick up a very special relic from my altar. Actually, these relics are really my heart and one of my most precious and prized possessions; these relics are of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni.
altogether. Later on, I met with the head abbot of the monastery, an elderly man of 96 whom they regarded as an Arahant. He really thought it was nice to have a Tibetan monk stay with them. Later, I went to see him many times. The last day, before I bid farewell, I went to speak with one of his attendants who became my friend and we were quite close. He asked me if there was anything he could give to me on my last day. I always heard that there were relics in Burma. I told him that I am interested in relics. I thought maybe he would bring any sort of relics, but then, amazingly, he gave me 3 relics of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni. Afterward, upon my arrival back to India, I met with His Holiness to give a report of my assignment. His Holiness asked me questions about my stay, and was surprised that my intended trip of 1 month became 6 months! I presented His Holiness with one of these relics. He said wow, and touched the relics to his head. He said that he very much believed that it is possible that the Buddha’s relics were in Burma. The second of these relics I presented to Lama Tharchin Rinpoche. With one last relic remaining, I presented to my Dharma brother Anam Thubten for a stupa which he will dedicate in Big Sur, California. As I said, this relic is really my heart and dearest possession, but I felt that I wanted to present them to the right person and to the right place. As in the 23rd verse of the 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva:
The practice of all the bodhisattvas is to let go of grasping
When encountering things one finds pleasant or attractive,
Considering them to be like rainbows in the summer skies—
Beautiful in appearance, yet in truth devoid of any substance.
This blog was dictated by Khenpo Karten Rinpoche in the month of July of 2023 to his student, Karma Choeying, on the occasion of parting with the precious Buddha relics from the Manjushri Dharma Center to a stupa in Big Sur, California.