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Kalachakra initiation 2017 to be held in Bodh Gaya by Tashi


07 January 2016

Omalaya Travel is happy to offer its customized Kalachakra tours to India to the devotees wishing to attend the precious Kalachakra 2017 Empowerment teaching. Omalaya-designed spiritual journeys are rooted in individual’s quest for self discovery and we incorporate the same outlook in designing the Kalachakra 2017 tour package. Omalaya Travel operated a successful Kalachakra tour to Ladakh in 2014. Omalaya-led devotees can receive Kalachakra initiation, teaching & empowerment under the expert guidance of tour’s spiritual guides like Geshe Tsering with Dr Chok and Geshe Lobsang with Tulku Phuljung. His Holiness the Dalai Lama would preside  the Kalachakra 2017 initiation to be held in Bodh Gaya, India from  3rd to 14th January  2017. This will be the 34th such initiation given by the Dalai Lama and the fifth time in Bodh Gaya. He has previously given Kalachakra initiations in Bodh Gaya in 1974, 1985, 2003 and 2012. What is Kalachakra? Kalachakra is a concept that is strongly associated with the Vajrayana sect of Buddhism. The term is derived from two words Kāla which means time and Chakra which means wheel. According to this concept, the events of the universe occur in a cyclical pattern. According to this religion, time is perceived as a symbol of change. For instance, a year is a measurement of change involved in the Earth revolving around the Sun. These changes are cyclical in nature although they might not replicate in the exact same manner each time. What is Kalachakra initiation? Kalachakra initiation is a process that empowers Buddhist pupils to practice the Kalachakra Laghutantra (also known as Kalachakra Tantra) in order to attain Buddhahood. The Kalachakra Laghutantra is a treatise that contains Buddhist philosophies, commentaries and meditation practices. The empowerment ritual is performed over a period of three days after the completion of the preliminary preparatory steps. During these three days of the actual empowerment, the disciples take part in various Buddhist rituals in order to obtain Kalachakra empowerment. The experience is divine and unforgettable even for a casual observer and is one that would stay in our memories even long after its end. Omalaya brings you a unique opportunity to witness the 34th Kalachakra initiation. For more information, please click here. You can also watch the video below to know more about Kalachakra 2017.

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Omalaya to organize a Kalachakra 2017 journey by Stéphanie

27 November 2015

Omalaya is organizing a unique journey for the Kalachakra 2017 festival. It is the 34th time that the Dalai Lama is giving the initiation. Omalaya, experts in the field of spiritual travel, bring to you a wonderful opportunity to participate in the ceremony. The Guide – Hermit Tsephel Gelong Tsephel is monk,Yogi and Hermit.He will share his knowledge of meditation and the experiences of Buddha’s own realization with the pilgrims. Tsepel would talk not just about the Kalachakra 2017 Bodhgaya​ Teaching and empowerment but also give tips on how to lead a happier life, how to engage the world we live in more compassionate ways and how to explore our inner self to find more peace. The experience – Unique If  you wish attend the teachings and empowerment rituals of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, we invite you to join us inwhat will be a journey of a life-time. This tour would be ideal for you if you are a spiritual wannabe, a keen Buddhist, an avid tourist or just an observer of the biggest gathering of the Tibetan Vajrayana sect of Buddhism. The site – Bodh Gaya It is said that the Buddha attained enlightenment on the sacred ground of Vajrassna beneath the sacred Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya. It is here that the Buddha became one with  Mother earth’s universal and infinite energy. Since then, Bodh Gaya has been the centre of Buddhist universe and most important site of  Buddhist pilgrimage. Kalachakra 2017 will take place for the fifth time in Bodh Gaya to celebrate life, peace and the 80th birthday of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Here is a list of things you must know if you are travelling to Bodh Gaya to attend Kalachakra 2017. For detailed information about our Kalachakra 2017 journey, please click here. For more information about the other journeys we organize, please click here.


An interview with Tashi Gyalpo, the founder of Omalaya for Radio Free Asia by Stéphanie

Sikyong award

10 September 2015

‘If You Make a Good Business Plan You Will Always Be Successful’ On September 2nd this year ‒ Tibetan Democracy Day ‒ Gyalpo Tashi, the founder of Omalaya (formerly Tendrel Travel), was presented with an entrepreneurship award by the Central Tibetan Administration. Here, in an edited version of an interview with Radio Free Asia, Tashi explains his company’s origins and his plans for the future. http://www.rfa.org/tibetan/exile/interview-with-owner-of-tendrel-travel-09292015142116.html#.VgrYdpW9 Radio Free Asia: Tashi Delek to all listeners of Radio Free Asia. I’m Tsewang Ngodup. My guest today is Mr Gyalpo Tashi, who was born in Jangthang, Ladakh. He attended Upper TCV School in Dharamsala and is an alumnus of the University of Delhi. Tashi is among the first businessmen to establish a Tibetan company ‒ Omalaya ‒ in Ladakh, along with a Ladakhi partner. This year, on Tibetan Democracy Day, four outstanding Tibetan entrepreneurs were awarded seed money by the Tibetan Entrepreneurship Development Programme of the Central Tibetan Administration’s (CTA’s) finance department. Tashi was amongst the winners and was presented with Rs 400,000 by the CTA’s political leader, Dr Lobsang Sangay. The award was made possible through the support of the Dalai Lama Foundation, Montreal, Canada. Tashi, please explain to us how you came up with the idea for your travel company. GyalpoTashi:  I once visited France and met some French people who, upon learning that I was from Ladakh and had worked as a guide and interpreter of Buddhism, said they wanted to visit the country. They asked me to arrange a tour and this is how the company was started. In 2010, I ran a tour programme for three groups and in 2014 we hosted 25 groups. 2014 was special, because we arranged for the groups to meet a shaman, join Introduction to Buddhism sessions, as well as touring in and around Leh. RFA: Omalaya is based in Dharamsala and receives groups from around the world, especially France. Besides Ladakh, do you visit other sites in north India? GT:  Our main programmes are in Ladakh, as the landscape, culture and pilgrimage sites are very similar to those of Tibet, which is more difficult to visit. We also run tours from Dharamsala to Bodhgaya and Nepal. Next year, we also plan to take a group to Bhutan.   RFA: You’ve said you were proud to win the award ‒ to be encouraged to develop your business so that you can give more […]

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An interview with a Ladakhi writer Nawang Tsering Shakspo by Stéphanie

Nawang Tsering Shakspo

05 August 2015

‘The Solitarian Guest House and the Father of Saboo’ Known locally as Abley, or ‘Father’, Nawang Tsering Shakspo is an Omalaya’s partner and the proprietor of the Solitarian Guest House in the village of Saboo ‒ one of the accommodations Omalaya uses on its Ladakh tours. Nawang worked for years with the Jammu and Kashmir government and is an expert on Ladakhi history and culture, as well as being a highly respected member of the community. Here, he talks to Matthew Singh Toor, Omalaya’s English-language editor, about his life, as well as providing an introduction to Saboo, which is located around 7km from Leh. Matthew Singh Toor: Where were you born? Nawang Tsering Shakspo:  In upper Leh, in a village called Sankar. The monastery there used to be the residential palace of Bakula Rinpoche, who is considered the founder of modern Ladakh. MST: Tell me about your education. NTS: I was born in the year 1952 and in the year 1959 I was selected for one of the Government of India scholarships. Otherwise, I was to visit Tibet and become a lama. In the year 1959, China occupied Tibet. Prior to that, there was a tradition ‒ the young go to Tibet for education and to become lamas. So, I was to become a lama but, since that road was closed, around the same time, upon the request of Bakula Rinpoche, the Government of India’s Ministry of Culture sanctioned 16 scholarships for 16 Ladakhis. I was selected for one of them. At the time, I was only seven years old. In those days, there wasn’t any road to Srinagar but Indian Airlines was operating a quota aircraft ‒ a small one. The scholarship was in Varanasi . The route to Varanasi goes via Srinagar. So we availed the chance to travel by air to Srinagar. Then from Srinagar to Jammu, Pathankot and Varanasi. I remained in Varanasi almost continuously for four years. I couldn’t come to home because there wasn’t any road. MST: What was the name of the institution? NTS: The Maha Bodhi Society. This is one of the most prestigious Buddhist institutions even now in the country. We were given accommodation there. I remained there till the completion of my intermediate level education, after 15 years in Varanasi. Then I did my BA course, then one year postgraduate in journalism at Varanasi Hindu University. After that, I returned […]

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You can visit Mount Kailash through the Nathula pass by Stéphanie

Mount Kailash

23 May 2015

Tourists from India can undertake a pilgrimage to Kailash through the Nathula pass in the Indian state of Sikkim. Located in the Tibetan Autonomous region of China, Mount Kailash is held sacred by not one but four religions namely Hinduism, Bonism, Jainism and Buddhism. To know more about Mount Kailash, please click here. In the past, pilgrims going to Kailash and Mansarovar had to make do with the Lipulekh Pass in Uttarakhand. Otherwise, they had to go to Nepal before reaching Tibet. In the existing routes, pilgrims had to undergo extreme hardships as they involved heavy trekking on rugged terrain and high altitudes reaching up to 6000 metres. Moreover, these routes could accommodate only a limited number of pilgrims. Acknowledging the limitations, the Governments of India and China signed a bilateral agreement in September, 2014 thereby opening the alternative Nathula route. The first batch of pilgrims are expected to make use of this route in June this year. The Government expects 1600 pilgrims to use the Nathula route in 2015. The biggest advantage of the Nathula pass is that it allows pilgrims to drive all along and they don’t have to go on foot. Pilgrims would first travel from Gangtok in Sikkim to Shigatse in Tibet. From there, well laid roads extend all the way to Kailash and Mansarovar which the they can make use of. The Nathula route would not only  reduce the hardships and travel time of the tourists but also enhance the visitor capacity. Many more pilgrims, especially senior citizens, are expected to evince interest now that they have more options to choose from. While the Nepal route takes 10 days to weeks, the Uttarkhand route takes almost a month. In contrast, the Nathula route is expected to take just 8 days.

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His Holiness the Dalai Lama to celebrate his 80th birthday in Southern California by Stéphanie

HH the Dalai Lama

22 May 2015

His Holiness the Dalai Lama turns eighty on July 6, 2015. His eightieth birthday is considered to be a major milestone by Tibetans. Therefore, celebrations may be held throughout the year in many different places. Earlier, in March this year, the Dalai Lama celebrated his birthday a few months in advance along with his friend Reverend Archbishop Desmond Tutu. To view the birthday celebrations, please click here. On July 6, the Dalai Lama is expected to conduct a global compassion summit in Southern California. The three-day summit will kick-start on July 5 and focus on the importance of compassion in today’s world. The Honda Centre in Anaheim will be the stage for the first day while the event will be held at the University of California, Irvine. The University had hosted the Dalai Lama earlier in 2004 and 2011. A wide range of events and religious rituals have been scheduled. Discussions with Buddhist leaders and fellow Nobel Laureates to explore the importance of universal peace in modern day world. Over ten thousand people from all walks of life are expected to participate in the celebrations.

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