Last weekend at Sakya Dechen Ling, Stuttgart,the beautiful shrine room in Alexanderstrasse was completely full of an international mix of students from Germany, Bulgaria, Austria and the UK to hear, contemplate and meditate on the the holy Dharma of Lord Buddha. Lama Jampa Thaye began his elucidation of the third and final section of the famous text written by the Indian Master Nagajuna called 'Letter to a Friend', using Lama Karma Thinley Rinpoche's recently published extensive commentary called The Telescope of Wisdom (Ganesha Press 2012).
The twelve links of dependent origination is a profound explanation, unique to the teachings of the Buddha, of the way all apparent phenomena, even though in reality empty of any self-nature, appear to manifest to the mind that is still afflicted by the disturbing emotions and ignorance. This important topic is the central part of the third and final section, on wisdom, of Nagarjuna's text. The extensive exposition of the twelve links of the root text is then eruditely elaborated by Lama Karma Thinley Rinpoche in his extensive commentary. When this is 'unpacked' by Lama Jampa Thaye in his clear and comprehensive style, it is impossible for the minds of the fortunate present not to be ripened, and an otherwise apparently complex teaching to reveal itself to be naturally clear.
It is now Lama Jampa Thaye's wish that the sangha in Sakya Dechen Ling introduce this Tara ritual into their practice regime, and now that the initiation and reading transmission has been given, Kunga Gyaltsen will lead a Tara practice weekend on the 8th March, folowed in June by a longer Tara retreat, lead by Wolfgang Staufner, in Sakya Changlochen Ling, which is the Dechen retreat centre in Southern France.
On Sunday Lama Jampa Thaye bestowed the initiation-blessing of the special form of the female Buddha-deity Tara, green in colour, that is particularly efficacious in dispelling fears and sicknesses. This particular lineage of Green Tara surrounded by an assembly of 21 Taras was brought to Tibet by the great Indian master Atisha more than one thousand years ago, and is now found in all lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. Lama Jampa Thaye also bestowed the reading transmission for the practice text of Tara written by the Sakya master Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, founder of the non-sectarian movement.