The first Nyingma Monlam Chenmo was held in 1989. It was the result of a unique congregation of many great enlightened Nyingma masters, yogis, Tulkus, Khenpos, monks, nuns, ngakpas, lay people and western buddhists who had assembled at the holy site of Bodhgaya to express their devotion to the sacred Vajra seat, Bodhi tree and the Khen-lop-cho sum.In particular, it came into being due to the magnificent and glorious vision of Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche as well as his outstanding generosity.
The beginnings of the Monlam lie in the early eighties when HH Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and HH Dodrupchen Rinpoche individually led hundreds of Nyingma monks and nuns in performing the Monlam which involved the chanting of the Arya-bhadracarya prani dhanaraj king of aspiration prayers a hundred thousand times. This led to the formal inauguration of the Nyingma Monlam Chenmo in 1989 principally through the instigation, generosity and far-sighted vision of Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche. The first four years saw the participation of many enlightened Nyingma masters including HH Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, HH Penor Rinpoche, HH Minling Trichen Rinpoche, HH Chadral Sangay Dorje Rinpoche, HH Tsetul Rinpoche, HH Trulshig Rinpoche, Tarthang Tulku and many others whose presence and blessings made a great impact on all the disciples.
The last five decades have witnessed a world torn apart by warfare, tyranny, oppression and genocide- the blood-soaked testament of negatives, prejudice, greed and ignorance which has shattered human rights and values. This has had a deeply deleterious effect on the Buddha Dharma in general and the living tradition of the Nyingma in particular.
Bodhgaya, Vajrasana is venerated as being the source of all the Enlightened Buddhas of the past, present and the future. Hence this intrinsically hallowed site has been chosen by all the Buddhas of the three times to be the seat of their enlightenment. This vajra seat is not subject to destruction even at the end of an eon. The Buddha Shakya muni also attained enlightenment at Bodhgaya 2600 years ago. It has further been made sacred by innumerable luminaries in the history of Buddhism who are associated with and practised at this holy place. The list extends from Arhat Kashyapa, the regent of Lord Buddha and the seven respective Arhats, and Acharya Nagarjuna along with the Six Ornaments and two Excellent Masters, the great Bodhisattvas Manjusri, Maitreya, Vajrapani, Tara and Avalokitesvara including Vidhyadharas and Dzogchen masters such as Rigzin Garab Dorje, Vimalamitra, Padmasambhava, Vairochana as well as the eighty four Maha siddhas. Many other masters and Lotsawas such as Ronzom Mahapandita, Marpa, Atisha Dipamkara and other Indian masters were also inspired to study and practice here.
As such it has been necessary to undertake and promote a ceremony for World Peace such as the Nyingma Monlam Chenmo which engenders the cultivation of inner spiritual experience that is vital for strengthening the authentic traditions of Tibetan Buddhism in the future.
At present, the Nyingma Monlam Chenmo provides the sole occasion for members of the diverse lineages of the Nyingma Tradition to congregate. It has taken on a vital significance with the need for greater understanding and co-operation among us all. It is our fervent hope that the Monlam (ceremony for world peace) will serve as an opportunity to foster closer ties and greater unity which would develop even further in the years to come.
Aims and Objectives
1. To pay homage and express our deepest respect and gratitude to Lord Buddha and Khen-lop-cho sum i.e. Khenpo Bodhisattva, Guru Padmasambhava and Chogyal trisong Deutsen and their esteemed lineage.
2. To pray for the longevity of the Buddha Dharma in general and particularly for the living tradition of guru Padmasambhava to flourish and spread throughout the world.
3. To fulfill the noble wishes of HH the Dalai Lama and all the glorious masters of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition and to pray for their well-being and longevity.
4. To work and pray for the welfare of the Sangha members, pacify and dispel all manner of illness and disease, negative karmas and obstacles, warfare and violence, famine and starvation, and to promote and strengthen human values and spiritual development on the road to achieving world peace.
5. To work and pray for the re-unification of Tibetans with their own homeland of Tibet , and for truth and justice to prevail and bring peace to Tibet and Tibetans.
6. To remember and pray for our parents, families and friends and all those who suffered so greatly or lost their lives during this great tragedy that has befallen our people.
7. To dedicate the merit accrued from the observance of the Nyingma Monlam Chenmo for the benefit of all sentient beings.
8. To organise Dharma discourses, initiations, conferences and future ceremonies for world peace.
To achieve these objectives this annual gathering of a great many Nyingma Sangha members is highly symbolic. The Nyingma School is further able to consolidate and maintain its lineage and tradition by always chanting and reading the following extra-ordinary prayers:
1. "The Arya Manjusrinamasanghiti" the King of Tantras,
2. "The Aryabhadracaryapranidhanaraj" the King of Aspiration Prayers,
3. "The Leu Dunma of Guru Padmasambhava,
4. "Dol-Chog" the Tara Sadhana, Mother of Liberation.