Our Centre in Malaysia
Kadam Tashi Choe Ling Malaysia has been a centre of many precious teachings given by Venerable Dagpo Rinpoche , its Spiritual Head and since its inception in 1995 many publications of the teachings have been transcribed and published by its students for the benefit of Rinpoche’s English speaking students . Today the centre functions as a gathering place for bi weekly prayers and bi weekly study groups where students can continue to pursue studies in the Buddha Dharma in its purest form.
History of Kadam Tashi Choe Ling
We are all indeed blessed that through the infinite kindness and compassion of our Master and by a series of exceptional causes and conditions coming together , Persatuan Kadam Tashi Choe Ling Malaysia would come into being . Set out below is a chronology of key events marking our Centre’s history :-
It began with an arranged visit to meet Rinpoche via Madam Lan Tjoa in Singapore by Sylvia Tjakra also fondly known as Oma , with her daughter, Irene Hartanto . The meeting was brief , but beyond the pleasantries what defined this moment of a casual invitation made by Oma to Rinpoche to come to Malaysia would be to set off a chain of developments that eventually result in a flourishing Centre espousing the true teachings of Buddhism passed down in an unbroken lineage through Ld Atisha and down through our precious Master Dagpo Lama Rinpoche .
Just like the planting of a tiny seed on a vast field, little did we realize the implications that were to unfold from this seemingly informal liaison.
The following year, Oma got a call from Madam Lan Tjoa in Holland informing her that Rinpoche would likely be making a trip to the East again that year. He had been invited to give teachings in Malaysia and accepted therefore her offer to stay at her home. It was on this occasion that the entire Tan Family got to meet Rinpoche for the first time.
A closer relationship would, slowly be cemented by Rinpoche’s skillful means over the coming years bonding those of us here in Malaysia with our Master looking out for his disciples walking ignorantly along the treacherous path unaware of the dangers lying ahead.
Rinpoche was invited to give a Lamrim teaching/retreat up at Cameron Highlands and what followed would be a kindling of the minds of whom would later become some of Rinpoche’s key students in the Buddha Dharma and starting this irreversible flood of faith with Rinpoche as their main Spiritual Guide.
A request was made to Rinpoche as to whether a dharma centre could be offered to him for future teachings in Malaysia . Rinpoche through his infinite kindness accepted the offer of a modest shoplot in the old town of Petaling Jaya.
Rinpoche will so joyously appear year after year to grace us giving us his precious gift of Dharma notably that of the Mahayana lineage teachings of Lord Atisha .
The first of many teachings to come by Rinpoche at the Centre , would be centered on the topic Mind and Mental Factor . During Rinpoche’s frequent visits to Malaysia many of his students, at times numbering over 100 persons would converge into an unassuming shoplot near the Old Town market to hear talks varying to Prayers to Arya Tara , excerpts of the Superior Beings Path , and Ganden Lha Gyalma , notably adapted to the level of the followers then.
2002 – 2007
With enthusiasm and to fuel greater public interest in Rinpoche’s teachings , KTCL organized a public talk in 2002 at the Armada Hotel , wherein Rinpoche would impart his knowledge of Karma and its effects .
Students here too sought permission from our main guide , Rinpoche , and this was given in 2005 for Venerable Jampel Parchin to engage in several intensive sessions at the Centre on a course on “Fundamentals of Buddhism” , a program designed by Rinpoche to provide students with the basic knowledge to help grasp terms and concepts essential listening to the Lamrim.
Taking inspiration from having attended the “Liberation in Our Hands” teachings in Mont Dore , France, some students in Malaysia , requested Rinpoche for a similar such retreat . KTCL would go on to organise a series of such retreats in Sepang , Malaysia with many of us participants enrolling ourselves away from the distracting routines of normal life into the quiet and simple environment of the Hotel Seri Malaysia just so to focus on topics such as Refuge, How to rely upon your Spiritual Master, Four Noble Truths and Lines of Experience.
Rinpoche launched his first official local book publication , The Bodhisattva Vows and giving a short talk at the MPH Mid Valley . A leading local social activist Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye was also invited to give an opening remark at the launching and the book which was subsequently made available for members of the public to invite at the store . Rinpoche continued his program by giving his final teaching at the old Centre .
As it soon became apparent that the old premises was no longer able to fit the sizable numbers of disciples that now follow Rinpoche on his visits here to Malaysia and with Rinpoche’s blessings, the new and current premise was identified and renovations began in early 2007 , completed in the same year. The new Centre now comfortably accommodates more students and also provide limited lodgings to those that may come from afar.
The inauguration of the new temple was held on the 16th November, 2007. To mark this special occasion, Rinpoche gave us a teaching on the Heart Sutra over four days . Alongside this development, Kadam Tashi Choe Ling was also officially registered as a Society on the 17th August 2007 and is now formally known as Persatuan Kadam Tashi Choe Ling Malaysia.
Aside from also teaching at the Centre , Rinpoche continued to give talks outside with the Buddhist Gem Fellowship hosting him on the talk on Death and dying .
Visit of Venerable Khenzur Rinpoche Lobsang Tenpa, who is the Drepung Tripa, the most senior abbot of the entire monastery of Drepung with its two colleges Gomang and Loseling. Rinpoche taught us The Four Great Seals and Karma and its effects.
Visit of Kyapje Ling Choktrul Rinpoche , reincarnation of the senior tutor to His Holiness XIV Dalai Lama . Rinpoche would be so kind as to expound on the Foundation of All Excellence , and this is indeed an auspicious moment for our Centre as Rinpoche also seem to respond positively to earnest request for him to teach in Malaysia again.
This year also marked an inaugural Webcast ( Video transmission via Internet ) at the occasion of the teachings on
the Nyur Lam given by Rinpoche at Kadam Tcheuling Bordeaux from May 21th to May 24th 2009. Soon we would be repeatedly receiving many of Rinpoche’s teachings from Europe and then India through Webcast , enabling foreign students including Malaysia to savour many more Dharma sessions , which would otherwise be unavailable to us. We would go on to broadcast many more webcast and today it represents one of the core activity at the Centre , for students to view and hear Rinpoche’s teachings from afar .
A webcast of His Holiness Dalai Lama’s teachings in Paris on Ethics and Society was also broadcasted this year .
Lending itself further to technology , KTCL brought its activities onto the online arena in 2010 , publishing its activities onto a newly created website www.ktcl.org.my which today carries news and information about the Centre and all the ongoings of it .
Teachings on The Five Paths of the Three Vehicles by Geshe Yonten Gyatso . The transmission could take place thanks also to the use of internet technology for our translator Rosemary Patton to translate from a time zone in the opposite side of the world.
This year Kadam Tashi Choe Ling launched its maiden soup kitchen efforts , to help feed the poor and the Centre was abuzz with a bevy of “workers ” tasked with preparing meals for distribution and through the existence of this program Ktcl was accredited with preparing no less than 500 meals to the less fortunate segments of our community .
This year Rinpoche commenced teaching the topic of The Easy Path , a lamrim work by the first Panchen Lama .
To help people further briefly understand about Buddhism and the role of KTCL in the spread of Dharma , Rinpoche agreed to create and appear in a unique video interview which is now published by KTCL on its You Tube channel .
In 2012 Kadam Tashi Choe Ling undertook an Open Day , a special event aimed at raising awareness with the public about the activities of the Centre . At the same juncture it used the opportunity to fulfill its social responsibility by helping to raise funds for two charity bodies , The National Kidney Foundation and also the National Autism Society of Malaysia through a jumble sale , wherein funds was raised through the sale of raffles tickets and the donation of items, some highly prized , enthusiastically handed over to us for sale.
Rinpoche continued with the teachings on The Easy Path during his visit to this country .
First year of our now annual program of a 1000 offering to Arya Tara which was graced by the monks from Indonesia to help facilitate our efforts here .
Geshe Champa Tonyut , a monk from Dagpo Shedrupling Monastery , Kullu would spend a few weeks at the Centre especially helping us to run through the transcription of Rinpoche’s teaching on Mind and Mental factors .
Beginning of this year Rinpoche was with us to continue with his teachings on The Easy Path .
A special visit by HE Sharpa Chorje Rinpoche was made to the Centre for an evening teaching on The Foundation of All Excellence .
This year however would prove to be a challenging one for Kadam Tashi Choe Ling , a year when Rinpoche manifested a serious illness immediately after the India trip , and many of us made special prayers dedicated to Rinpoche’s well being . To date Rinpoche’s health has improved tremendously and whilst a planned year end visit to Asia was canceled , many of us harbor fervent wishes that Rinpoche will be able to recover quickly and strongly to be able to teach us here again once more .
A 1000 offering to Arya Tara was dedicated fully towards this aim and aspiration.
A fund raising effort via a “movie date ” helped raise monies for our Indonesian counterparts Kadam Cho Ling Indonesia , in their virtuous aim of building a monastery ,Gaden Syeydrub Nampar Gyelwei Ling Monastery aimed at housing a burgeoning and significant Sangha community in Indonesia and it was also felt that the building of a Centre of learning would be best able to help physically , besides the mental aspect, uphold and preserve the Lamrim teachings as has been preciously transmitted over the years to us by Rinpoche.
Marks a year when Rinpoche’s health continued to improve and many of us are enormously thankful and relieved by news that Rinpoche could begin his activities once again albeit at a slower pace to enable him having more rest .
The faithful also was overjoyed by the fact that the annual Veneux retreats which are very significant dates for our study reflection and meditations could continue .
And on fortunate note this year was marked by a timely visit by Venerable Khensur Lobsang Tenpa Rinpoche , the current Drepung Tripa back to KTCL . It has been almost 8 years since he last graced our Centre with his presence and giving us profound teachings on The Four Noble Truth as well as an abbreviated version of “transforming adversity into the path “.