Festival of Lights & Merit

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Lhabab Düchen – Oct. 27, 2021
Wednesday, 27. October 2021
Lhaba Duchen
 

Lhabab Düchen, Descent from Heaven
(27 October)

Light offerings at the Mahabodhi Stupa statue during the Festival of Lights & Merit
Light offerings at the Mahabodhi Stupa, Bodhgaya during the Festival of Lights & Merit

During four holy times each year, according to the Tibetan calendar, Root Institute organises a celebration of the most significant events in Lord Shakyamuni Buddha's life, which we call our Festival of Lights & Merit.

Lhabab Duchen is a Buddhist festival celebrated to observe the Buddha's descent from the heaven of thirty three back to earth.

According to legend, the Buddha ascended to the heaven of the thirty three temporarily at the age of 41, in order to give teachings to benefit the gods and his own mother in that desire realm, and to repay the kindness of his mother by liberating her from Samsara. He was exhorted by his disciple, Maudgalyayana to return, and after a long debate and under a full moon agreed to return. He returned to earth a week later by a special triple ladder prepared by Viswakarma, the god of machines. This event is considered to be one of the great deeds of the Buddha.

Any action done during Lhabab Duchen is multiplied in its power. Karmic results are multiplied by one hundred million, as cited by Lama Zopa Rinpoche in the Vinaya text Treasure of Quotations and Logic. In addition, it is said that practices done at the Mahabodhi Stupa are multiplied 8-fold! It is a very powerful time to practice and increase one’s commitment to both practice and study.

We will offer thousands of lights, prayer flags, flowers and pujas on behalf of the sponsors and their loved ones. Donations will also go for the Dharma teaching activities and charitable projects of Root Institute for Wisdom Culture.

Guidelines of behaviour in a Dharma environment

Root Institute is a delightful, semi-monastic meditation centre.

To maintain a conducive, spiritually harmonious atmosphere for inner reflection and meditation, we kindly ask all our students, guests and visitors to observe the following guidelines:

  • Respect all life: do not intentionally kill any living being, even small insects.

  • Respect others' property: do not steal or take anything not freely given.

  • Be honest and straightforward: do not lie or intentionally deceive others.

  • Be celibate: no sexual activity; this also includes no romantic holding hands, hugging, massages and other physical displays of affection.

  • Be alert and mindful*: avoid intoxicants such as alcohol, drugs and cigarettes; we encourage you to stop smoking while here, but if this is impossible, you can smoke outside the gates.

  • Be considerate of others' silence: keep silence in the appropriate areas and at all times during residential courses, especially in the meditation hall (gompa) and dormitories; no singing or playing music and, in general, maintain a quiet demeanour while on the property.

  • Be considerate of the monks and nuns: dress respectfully; please no shorts above the knee, tank-top shirts, or tight and revealing clothing.

  • Couples: can stay in the same room for two weeks or less under the celibacy policy.

Please be aware:

  • * The Bihar state government has passed laws totally prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcohol in the state, with very severe penalties! Please ensure that you do not carry any alcohol with you in Bihar.

  • Also, please note that those in service or teaching in FPMT centers and projects do not engage in the practice of Shugden and, due to our commitment to following His Holiness the Dalai Lama's advice and supporting his work, we do not share our materials and facilities with those who knowingly continue to practice Shugden against his advice.