His Holiness Begins Actual Kalachakra Empowerment

July 14th 2011

Washington DC, USA, 14 July 2011 - On July 14th His Holiness the Dalai Lama began the first stage of the actual Kalachakra empowerment. Early in the morning, His Holiness left his hotel for the Verizon Center to continue with the preparatory self-generation prayers.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama with Cardinal Donald Wuerl in Washington DC on July 14, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
In the afternoon, before the session, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the Archbishop of Washington, D.C., came to greet His Holiness the Dalai Lama. His Holiness and the Cardinal first spent some time together before proceeding together to the stage where the Cardinal made some remarks of welcome.  He formally welcomed His Holiness and all the guests to Washington, D.C. on behalf of the Archdiocese of Washington. The Cardinal recalled his first meeting of His Holiness in the 1970s and subsequently during the Assisi summit of religious leaders in 1986. He expressed his admiration of His Holiness and said he prayed that the programs in Washington D.C. will proceed smoothly.In his remarks, His Holiness recalled the close relationship that he had with Pope John Paul II. He also said that the Assisi summit that the Cardinal had referred to was a unique experience. He said that meeting sent a signal to millions of people that different religions and different people had the same potential to serve humanity.  His Holiness said it was our common responsibility to make the 21st century a century of peace saying the 20th century witnessed a lot of bloodshed.

Referring to the Christian tradition of total submission to God and doing his will, His Holiness also praised “our Christian brothers and sisters” as they have made the greatest contribution to education.

His Holiness then mentioned that during the Kalachakra initiation that he bestowed in Switzerland in 1985, the Aga Khan had come. Later, during a Kalachakra in India, a Hindu master had come. He said today during the Kalachakra in Washington, D.C. we have the visit of a Christian leader.

Over 10,000 attended the Kalachakra Preliminary Empowerment at the Verizon Center in Washington DC on July 14, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
His Holiness thanked Cardinal Wuerl for his presence and presented him with a “souvenir”, which was a statue of the Buddha. His Holiness added that he always tell non-Buddhists that they could regard the Buddha merely as a thinker and a philosopher.  His Holiness then began the first stage of the actual Kalachakra empowerment. This process included bestowal of the Bodhisattva vow, visualization of the disciple entering the mandala, etc.

At the conclusion His Holiness announced that there would not be a webcast of the session tomorrow as it is the actual empowerment that involves tantric vows that need to be received in person from the master. The public viewing of the Kalachakra Mandala also began in the evening.

US Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues, Under Secretary Maria Otero, attended part of the afternoon session.

Today’s session (as well as yesterday) was attended by over 10,000 people. In the past few days the daily attendance has been increasing. Attendance is expected to be the largest on July 16.



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