The early morning was crisp with autumn air as we whispered our hellos in the pre-dawn hour Friday morning. Excitement was brewing as we settled the final touches on the registration table and placed the global Prayer and Aspiration Requests outside the Nalanda West shrine room. At 7 am sharp, Lama Rabten and an assembly of umdzes opened the Nalandabodhi’s first Tara Drupchen with the Tibetan recitation.
Lama Rabten explained how important it was to recite the Tara practice during the dawn hours, and keep the practice top of mind throughout the day, reciting the OM TARE TUTTARA TURE SVAHA even during breaks. The morning session was the only one in Tibetan, while the other three sessions that day were in a beautiful English liturgy translated and generously sponsored by Mitra Dean Tyler Dewar.
Teachings before each Tara practice
Before each English session, there is a short teaching about Arya Tara. Acharya Tashi gave us a succinct teaching, peppered with subtle humor, on Arya Tara’s history, her promise, and the practice itself.
Nalandabodhi founder and guiding teacher Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche surprised us with his presence during the last afternoon session, and gave us a spontaneous teaching about the importance of the Tara Practice for practitioners to help clear obstacles and provide help wherever we need it. He likened Tara to a great charitable foundation that does wonderful works for the community and for anyone that asks for help. Yet, just like we would not expect a foundation to walk door to door asking if they need help, nor will Tara know who needs help without our requests. So, if we feel we are stuck with our practice or that we need help in other ways, we need to ask for her help, just as we asked our parents when we were younger, or asked for grants to complete our education.
There’s still time to request for prayers or aspirations
If you would like to ask for a prayer request or you have an aspiration, the global Sangha and practitioners here at the Tara Drupchen will keep them in our hearts while we practice. You can make your requests known to us through Sunday. Simply click here and follow the one-step process. We will write-in your request and post it on our global prayer and aspiration boards, located outside the Nalanda West shrine rooms, as seen below.
May all requests during Nalandabodhi’s Tara Drupchen be quickly realized and Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche’s Dharma activities be by blessed and guided by Arya Tara inseparable from our lineage gurus!