By Wolfgang Neugebauer:
In spite of his serious health problems, Kyabje Tenga Rinpoche made the summer course 2010 an unforgettable event for all those who had the chance to be there.
In empowerments, pujas, lectures and hundreds of interviews, the perfect activity of a Bodhisattva was demonstrated. The Bodhisattva works untiringly for others. Unaffected by stress or strain, he/she conveys to all around the sense of being supported in kindness. Greed, confusion and hatred, the emotional entanglements that trap us and that we feel helplessly prey to, lose their power in his presence. The rays of the sun burn through the fog.
In the two weeks' cycle of teachings – framed between the Tara Retreat and the concluding Gonkar Retreat – Rinpoche continued to comment on the text "The Union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen" by Karma Chagme (1613-1678). This stunningly relevant treatise explains all the important aspects of the path from Refuge and the importance of Bodhicitta up to the realisation of Mahamudra. This summer, as 350 years ago, it was a skillful means to keep the audience of several hundred listeners in a state of undivided attention. Many thanks for the wonderful translations of Christoph Klonk (German) and Thomas Roth aka Sherab Drime (English).
A special surprise awaited us in the altar sponsored by Tenga Rinpoche: a huge wall cabinet, hand-carved and decorated in Nepal, whose shelves are already filled with Tara statues and Kanjur texts. Thus, after the enlargement of the room in 2009, a classical Tibetan Sanctuary is taking shape that will serve generations to come as the center of their spiritual activities.
Step by step, Kyabje Tenga Rinpoche’s vision of the European Center is becoming a reality.
Underlying the successful realisation of this vision, however, are the selfless efforts of the members of the organisation, who in the past decade, while working full jobs, have given their own time to advancing the development of the center. And we enjoyed in this Dharma space the annual meeting of friends, the growing of the children, Spülopa’s jokes, Lamas playing football and clement weather.
We delighted in the art of vegetarian cooking, in a cappuccino doppio from Georg’s coffeeshop, in rainbows over the hilly landscape. The family atmosphere we treasure derives last but not least from the perfect networking of volontary helpers with the professionals. No matter whether from the kitchen crew or from the child care team, everywhere friendly serenity reigned – a glimpse of Dewachen.
But this dream ended far too quickly. The 'goodbye party' which meanwhile has become traditional, started with a Mandala offering to Rinpoche – a creative dance, songs prepared by the youngsters with their attendants, and with magic tricks and Spülopa’s Dharma sketch. As dawn broke, the gathering, whipped up by DJ Edward, turned into a jubillant all-inclusive dance under the strings of lights. The Milarepa-Tsok-Puja marked the dignified spiritual conclusion of the Karma Chagme weeks.
In recent years, the unbridled greed of financial speculators has caused the world economy to falter, with dire consequences that affect our center, too. Currently, we even lack the funds to install the insulation and desperately needed weather protection for the Sanghahouse, erected in 2009. The interior finish remains woefully incomplete.
It’s an opportunity for compassion and the living practice of the Paramitas. Bliss for all of us!