2023 Bodh Gaya Pilgrimage: 1000 Buddhas Empowerment with Khentrul Rinpoche
Join us on this once-in-a-lifetime journey with Khentrul Rinpoché to the seat of the Buddha’s enlightenment in India. During this week-long retreat participants will connect to the Shakyamuni Buddha through the study and practice of the 1000 Buddha empowerment, puja, and sadhana at the most sacred site at and near the Mahabodi Stupa. This is the first time that Khentrul Rinpoche has offered this empowerment and has chosen the most auspicious location for the blessings of the Buddha.
Our journey takes place at the Bodhi Tree, nearby temples, and Mahabodhi Stupa where we will retreat and receive 1000 Buddha teachings. Accompanied by many monks we will perform pujas and offerings to the Buddha. In this practice, we can connect to all aspects of our Buddha nature and learn how we can use tantra to transform our emotions and samsaric limitations into the stainless qualities of Buddha nature. Each of the Buddha families represents different aspects of our enlightened nature. As we learn to identify and work with these aspects we can learn to use our daily life as the conditions and opportunities we need for enlightenment. Doing this practice in such a holy place as a pilgrimage is karmically purifying.
India is an important place for fully understanding this opportunity to use the emotions and aspects of our daily life for transformation. While Tibet has for many years maintained the Sutra and Vajrayana teachings largely in the monastic communities, India has preserved the rich variations of tantra embedded directly in their daily life and culture. Khentrul Rinpoche sees this as an inspiration for Buddhist Vajrayana. He is passionate about students being able to transform in their daily lives because if we are to keep the precious teachings of Buddhist tantra flourishing we need to keep it alive in living lay practitioners’ culture.
Cost: AUD TBD announced on April 1 (Includes shared accommodation, all teachings, empowerments, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Daylong site-seeing in the Bodh Gaya area. Airfare is not included.)
The tour includes:
-7-night stay in Bodh Gaya, Bihar, India
-Daily sadhana practices, guided meditations, and reflections guided by Spiritual Director, Khentrul Rinpoche,, and Senior students
-1000 Buddha Empowerment (Initiation), Puja, and Sadhana Instructions
-Authentic traditional accommodations, all meals included
-1 Day of Site seeing holy sites in the area
-Optional opportunity to book a personal Tibetan astrology reading
Who can come?
Pilgrimage, 1000 Buddha Empowerment, and retreat are open to everyone.
After participants have arrived we will allocate accommodations. For those who wish to help set up the offerings, you can let us know and spend the day arranging them. Once everyone is settled in, we will have dinner together. At an evening teaching, Khentrul Rinpoche will open our event with a welcome speech and prayers.
Day 2 & 3 (21st- 22nd October) – 1000 Buddhas Empowerment Ceremony
Enjoy breakfast and prayers together. We will all take part in the 1000 Buddha Empowerment ceremony. Each evening we will have the chance to recite prayers together.
Day 4 & 5 (23rd – 24th October) – 1000 Buddhas Puja
Khentrul Rinpoche and monks will chant and perform the Puja offerings for us. If there is time we will also visit the Mahabodhi Stupa grounds to practice the Sadhana together. Day 6 (25th October) – Teachings and Practices in Bodha Gaya
We will take the day to explore the holy sites of Bodh Gaya and receive teachings and practice the 1000 Buddha Sadhana together. Indian cultural experience in the evening if planning permits.
Day 7 (26th October) – Day of Site Seeing to Holy Sites
We will take a tour via bus to some of the more distant nearby holy sites of Bodh Gaya such as the nearby holy caves that the Buddha meditated in before realizing enlightenment. Closing dinner ceremony.
Day 8 (27th October) – Departure Retreat Completed We will check out of the hotel and make our way home. Take home a blessed souvenir home from the event to connect with this holy space.
Food & Accomodations
Indian diet is typically vegetarian and spicy. We may have the opportunity to have Tibetan cooking as well. We have arranged for a vegetarian trip as much as possible. We can not accommodate allergies.
Accommodations in Bodha Gaya are basic and not luxurious. The rooms will have bathrooms and western-style toilets. Rooms are either a twin share or a dorm-style. If you are traveling with a friend and would like to stay with them, please write in and request. We will do what we can to keep you together.
The price for this journey is $ AUD per person (shared occupancy).
A non-refundable $1,500 AUD deposit holds your space. We will email you an invoice (via PayPal or stripe) at least a week before each due date.
|Payment #1 (20% – non-refundable)
|Paid at registration
|Payment #2 (40%)
|1st of July
|Payment #3 (40%)
|15th of September
Methods of Payment You can make payments for this tour via any of the following methods:
- Credit Card or Paypal: Check out on the form below
- Direct Debit: Tibetan Buddhist rime Institute Inc. Bank: ANZ. BSB: 013-479 Account: 4944-47223 (Please include your surname as a reference)
- Wire Transfer: Acc: Tibetan Buddhist Rime Institute. Bank: ANZ. Branch: Upper Ferntree Gully, Victoria Australia. Swift Code: ANZBAU3M. BSB:013 457. Account No: 4944 47223
- Check out rimebuddhism.com website, with the non-refundable AUD$? using one of the methods described above.
- Once we have confirmed the payment, we will contact you via email to confirm your registration.
- 1000 Buddha Empowerment(s) from Khentrul Rinpoche
- 3 Meals per day
- Transportation to sites within India
- All accommodations
- All meals
- All site entrance fees
- All tips at hotels and restaurants
- Indian cultural performance if possible
Price does not include:
- International airfare
- Transfer to and from the airport
- India visa fee if needed
- Travel and health insurance
- Photography fees at sites
- Tip to local guide and driver
- Dana to Teachers or Rinpoche
- Astrology or Massage bookings
- Beverages in addition to water
1000 Buddha Empowerment
Who Can Attend
There are no prerequisites and afterward no commitments other than the ones you choose to take. This path is flexible; it allows you to engage with it wherever you are at. Empowerment can be taken as a blessing or empowerment. The refuge, bodhisattva, tantric vows, and uncommon vows of Kalachakra will be given along with the initiation for those taking this as empowerment.
Advice for Travel
You are responsible to book your own international flights. There is a local airport in Gaya as well as a train station. It is also possible to arrive from Patna.
First and foremost, your passport MUST be valid at least 6 months beyond the end date of the trip, and you’ll need two empty pages in the Visas section of your passport (make sure they are in the Visa section, not the Amendment or Endorsement section). Most countries require a visa for India. Please check with your local Indian embassy for details. India now offers e-visas which can be applied for online and will meet most of the tourist needs.
You can read the American CDC’s recommendations here. We advise you to check with your local doctor to decide what is best for you. It is useful to bring a small first aid pack which includes: Nausea and diarrhea medicine, travel sickness tablets, glucose powder, paracetamol tablets, saline eyewash, cold and flu tablets, mosquito repellent, sunscreen and any other supplies you feel you may need or have been advised to bring.
If you have a serious food allergy or medical condition we should know about please inform us by email to discuss it as soon as possible. This is not a strenuous trip. We will be sitting a lot. Please bring a cushion or folding chair if you need it for the sitting. On the site-seeing day we will be driving for several multi-hour stretches times on this trip, so guests should be able to sit in a vehicle for up to 5 hours at a time (although we can stop for bathroom breaks and leg-stretching along the way).
We suggest medical insurance which includes evacuation and trip cancellation insurance, as well, as you never know what obstacles life can toss at you leading up to a trip. However, we do not require this coverage, we only suggest it highly. We will be in remote areas that may not have a modern medical facility. Please plan accordingly.
Arriving in Bodha Gaya in October, the temperature is +32°C during the daytime and +21°C at night. The area is very dusty. In India clothes that can be hand washed are best. Also, dust can be difficult to remove from clothing so it is advised to keep that in mind when packing.
When attending the teachings, you will require something to sit on, so bring a meditation cushion with you and a plastic sheet in case it rains. You will most definitely need insect repellent. Other items which will come in handy are umbrella, sunscreen, towel, hat, sunglasses, toilet paper/tissues, batteries, headlamp, camera, SD card for extra storage, torch, chargers, adaptors, pen, paper/writing book, favorite snack food, access to $500 for extra food and miscellaneous expenses.
We recommend drinking only bottled water, and you will want to rinse your toothbrush off in bottled water. Bottled and boiled water will be available throughout the trip. You can use water purification tablets and UV light purifiers.
You can either exchange cash in India or use local ATMs. All of your meals and transportation are covered, so you just need personal spending money.
For most of the trip, there will not be wifi available.
Traditionally, an offering is made to the teacher at the conclusion of the Tour (please note that this is entirely optional) as a gesture of appreciation. You can offer whatever you think is appropriate. However, here are a few suggestions – a card, flowers, money, food or other items. A Tibetan offering scarf (khata) is given to the teacher for a blessing as part of the ceremony and can be borrowed or purchased from retreat volunteers or you may like to bring your own.
Khentrul RinpocheNon-Sectarian Master of Kalachakra
Khentrul Rinpoché Jamphel Lodrö is the founder and spiritual director of Dzokden. Rinpoche is the author of Unveiling Your Sacred Truth, The Great Middle Way: Clarifying the Jonang View of Other-Emptiness, A Happier Life, and The Hidden Treasure of the Profound Path.
Rinpoche spent the first 20 years of his life herding yak and chanting mantras on the plateaus of Tibet. Inspired by the bodhisattvas, he left his family to study in a variety of monasteries under the guidance of over twenty-five masters in all the Tibetan Buddhist traditions. Due to his non-sectarian approach, he earned himself the title of Rimé (unbiased) Master and was identified as the reincarnation of the famous Kalachakra Master Ngawang Chözin Gyatso. While at the core of his teachings is the recognition that there is great value in the diversity of all spiritual traditions found in this world; he focuses on the Jonang-Shambhala tradition. Kalachakra (wheel of time) teachings contain profound methods to harmonize our external environment with the inner world of body and mind, ultimately bringing about the golden age of peace and harmony (dzokden).