LAPCHI: The Speech Mandala of Yidam Chakrasamva
Lapchi Snow Mountain is situated in the Eastern part of Nepal, at a height of about 3,900 meters. Lapchi Snow Mountain is not only the speech of Yidam Chakrasamvara, it is also a holy place that had been blessed by Padmasambhava and many other great masters of high attainment from India, such as Saraha. The crown jewel of all these great accomplished master is the enlightened Yogi Milarepa (1040-21123) who mediated for many years mainly in the Snow Mountains of Lapchi and left sacred makes such as his footprints, sacred fountain and so forth at many sites. The founder of the Drikung Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, Kyobpa Lord Jigten Sumgon (1143-1217), also sent 55,525 disciples simultaneously to practise in Lapchi, in this sacred place, the practice of the Dharma has flourished like the rays of the sun shining upon the snow mountain. One of the great masters Lapchi Namkha Gyaltsen practised in Lapchi for over thirty one years, and entered parinirvana there. There were many relics lift upon cremation of his body. This master said in his autobiography that meditating Lapchi enabled him to attain greater progress and realization as compared to meditating in other place.
In Lapchi, one can find many sacred caves for meditation retreats, as well as the Gephel Ling Temple and Jangchup Stupa, both of which have been in existence for almost three hundred years. However over the course of time, the temple has grown dilapidated and is now on the verge of collapse. Nowadays, the temple rarely house any monks and the building is in great need of repair. Under the instruction of His Holiness the 37th Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang Rinpoche, H.E Nubpa Rinpoche and Dorzien Dondup Palden (Dorzien-Dharma Holder) leads the embetrs of the Nechok Lapchi Kagyu Milarepa Association (NLKMA) in undertaking the arduous task of restoring the place. Most Venerable H.E Nubpa Rinpoche recognized the urgency for the temple to the rebuilt and make a earnest wish for “the preservation of the holy place, so that Dharma practice may re-flourish there, thus ensuring the continued existence of the Triple Gem to benefit all sentient being”. With this aspiration, the Nechok Lapchi Kagyu Milarepa Association was formally established in 1995 in Nepal. Since then, the Association has been providing support for practitioners and lams in retreat. This includes accompanying them on their journey into the mountains. The Association has also speared no effort in carrying our restoration work of the meditation caves, temple, monk’s quarters, village children and settlement etc.
Due to the compassionate aspiration and kind sponsorship of Nubpa Rinpoche’s idea of nurturing monastic talents, five of the younger lamas have been sent to the DrIKUNG Kagyu Institute at Jangchub Ling in India to further their study and research of the sutras. In recent years, more and more practitioners have come to Lapchi for their retreats. Due to the support and efforts of many benefactors, there practitioners are able to follow in the footsteps of Milarepa and do their retreats in peace. However, the repairs that have been completed so far form only a small portion of the whole project. Much remains to be done to bring the almost three-hundred years old Gephel Ling Temple and Jangchub Stupa, Which are on the verge of collapse, back to their former glory.
Apart from this, there is also a need to build new retreat rooms for three of the important retreat centres’ in Lapchi Snow Mountain. These three retreat centres are the ‘’Shepa Dorje Retreat Centre’’, ‘’Nyanyoe (the left ear mandala of Chakrasamvara) Retreat Centre’’ and the ‘’Heart of Chogsham (body shape of Benza Varahi) Retreat Centre’’
There is also a need to build a main water tower on top of the mountain and connect water pipes from the water tower to various sacred retreat caves and the Gephel Ling Temple. Small water storage towers also have to be installed in each of the sacred retreat caves. This is to ensure that in the event of heavy snow blocking the entrance to the caves and accumulating to the height of human shoulders, practitioners would have their own water supply and need not resort to using melted snow (Which is very harmful to health) as drinking water. Once the problem of obtaining drinking water is solved, practitioners in retreat do not have to go our side to fetch water or move to a different place due to the harsh cold and heavy snow. This would thus allow those Practioners to concentrate on their retreat.
Apart from catering to the needs of lamas and practitioners in Lapchi, the Association also hopes to help to the 13th house hold that are currently living in Lapchi. The living conditions of these families are very poor, especially the old folks who are lonely, sick and do not have anyone to care for them. These families are in great need of help.