Munsong Gompa in Kalimpong

The Munsong Retreat Center in Kalimpong, India, overlooking Sikkim, is a small temple that supports six monks and two nuns as well as a few hundred devout Sikkimese and Nepalese country folk. The Centre was founded by Lama Karma Tsundro who was a student of the previous Changling Rinpoche.

The monastery was established in the 1960s. It is an important part of the community and during school holidays many students and their parents attend week-long retreats.

Changling Rinpoche teaches and guides the monks and nuns who, up until the last few months, have been living in substandard conditions. The temple roof is leaking and needs immediate attention.

With the support of Lotus Speech Canada and several sponsors, a modest new building is under construction. This will include bedrooms, a kitchen with electricity, and a storage room. For more information see the Munsong Gompa website.

Lama Karma Tsundro

Lama Tsundro

Lama Tsundro

Lama Karma Tsundro, founder of Munsong Gompa, passed into Pairanivana on the morning of February 1st. He was in his eighties. Lama Tsundro was a student of the previous Changling Rinpoche and the current Changling Rinpoche is now the spiritual director of Munsong Gompa. Lotus Speech has long been a supporter of this organization.

Lama Tsundro came from Tibet. While in Tibet he did retreat in a cave for six years practicing Vajrasattva. His practice was continuous and he did not give up his practice or come out of the cave even when he ran out of food. His teacher said that by the power of his practice he would go to a place where they are speaking a different language and he would be able to benefit the people there.

He didn’t understand what his teacher was trying to say but later he found himself in this place called Munsong which was full of Nepalese people. They were practicing a shamanic tradition and conducting animal sacrifices. Lama Tsundro introduced the Buddhist path of nonviolence and the ten virtuous practices. By the strength of his own practice he stopped more than 1000 families from practicing sacrifices. These families also came to embrace the practices of non-violence and the ten virtuous actions.

An older woman offered land for the dharma and Lama Tsundro developed the temple where people now gather to practice and study. The centre now supports six monks and two nuns as well as a few hundred devout Sikkimese and Nepalese country folk. There are now lots of young people showing interest in practice.

As of this morning, Lama Tsundro is still resting in meditation posture. His remains will be cremated on February 10th.

Changling Rinpoche has asked that we begin Guru Yoga and Mani recitations. There is a special blessing and power to practices done when a master passes away and it is a great opportunity to gather merit and purify negativities.

You can read more about Lama Tsundro and Munsong Gompa on the Munsong Gompa website.

Update from Kalimpong

Greetings from Kalimpong. The Bumchok Puja started yesterday with the aim of accumulating 100,000 guru mantra with 15 monks and small group of Lotus Speech pilgrims from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Australia. The Bumchok puja will go on for 3 days in total with daily tsog offerings and 1000 butter lamp offerings. The tsog offerings will be distributed to the public, schools and orphanage.

Today’s tsog offerings were distributed to the Central School for Tibetans with 1000 students. Most of them are borders at the school and are from poor families from surrounding areas. They would not have afforded to have such luxuries like biscuits, sweets and chips. For them this is indeed a treat!

The purpose of this puja is to clear obstacles for Lotus Speech, for the dharma to flourish for all, may all the masters live long and spread the dharma, and to accumulate virtuous karma. Rinpoche would like to continue this event on a yearly basis.

Many thanks to Lotus Speech Canada, Lotus Speech Australia and various sponsors who have contributed to the tsog offerings.

Min Li, Lotus Speech Australia, in Kalimpong

Bumchok Puja

Happy children

Update from Kalimpong

Changling Rinpoche is very pleased to report that all the building at Munsong Gonpa, Kalimpong are almost complete. The nuns moved into their room in March of this year and the kitchen is almost finished.

Entrance to the Gompa

Changling Rinpoche & Munsong Sangha