Author Topic: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."  (Read 26812 times)

DSFriend

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"When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« on: February 22, 2011, 12:23:53 PM »
8th century famous prophecy by Guru Rinpoche foretold that, "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels, the Tibetan people will be scattered like ants across the world, and the Dharma will come to the Land of the Red Man."

I read this with an ache in my heart for the Tibetan people who have lost their country, yet at the same time, rejoice that it was the Tibetans who have kept the pure teachings for the rest of the world. It is but one lifetime alone, that we are born a Tibetan, an American, an Asian, .... it is not guaranteed that we may be born of the same nationality again in our next life.

But the causes we have created is what we will be receiving. If we think of only one life time, then how pitiful, meaningless, sad and empty our lives will be. 

Dharma has now reached the Land of the Red Man...are we ready to uphold the Dharma or will the table turn on us that Dharma will decline in our country just like how it left India and Tibet?

What's the greatest challenge where you are, where Buddhism is not the mass consciousness?
« Last Edit: February 23, 2011, 05:29:52 PM by DSFriend »

Helena

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2011, 06:40:25 PM »
Interesting sharing, DS Friend.

The question I get the most is "If everyone becomes spiritual or a monk/nun, then who will go to work, earn the money, etc? Without sponsors and money, no spiritual organization can survive. So, each of us play different roles."

The world would be a very different place if everyone became spiritual or became ordained - then perhaps, there would be no need for money and the chasing of money at such intense, great urgency, May be.

Unfortunately, we imagine the world as it is, with the samsaric strings still attached. Hence, we can't imagine that life can be any different or would be any different, because the living conditions in samsara compel us to earn a living and etc. Of course, we are the ones creating such causes and it is on-going - ceaseless.

The greatest challenge - can we imagine life in samsara without being bound by samsaric rules and conditions? Can we convey the emptiness and futility of samsara to those around us?

So far, a lot of people think I am becoming very fanatical in my spiritual path. They think I should relax more and do things for myself and not be completely caught up with spirituality. They think I am losing out on life.

If they only knew....


Helena

jessicajameson

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2011, 09:17:48 AM »
What a beautifully written prophecy. I've always been very envious of the way high lamas write. So poetic, beautiful and straight to the point.

What is the Land of the Red Man? People in China?

Thanks.

Vajraprotector

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2011, 06:43:37 PM »
What a beautifully written prophecy. I've always been very envious of the way high lamas write. So poetic, beautiful and straight to the point.

What is the Land of the Red Man? People in China?

Thanks.

It is the land of the red indian -- United States. There's an interesting article I read about His Holiness the 16th Karmapa meeting the Hopi also by Steve Roth.

Prior to his first visit to the United States in 1974, His Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje, had expressed a great interest in wanting to visit the American Indians, and specifically the Hopis. So in early October of 1974, I found myself driving His Holiness in a gold-colored Cadillac through a desert to the Hopi mesa to meet with Chief Ned. This historic meeting with His Holiness and the Hopis was and remains to be one of the major and yet curiously hidden events of the twentieth century.

It was early to mid-afternoon with the temperature in the 100-degree range as the big car began to gradually spiral its way from the desert floor around and around this mountain-like mound of dry and dusty soil which was Mesa 2. As soon as we arrived at the top of the mesa, His Holiness emerged from the car and was greeted by a short, wiry, and weather-beaten Chief Ned, who was probably in his late seventies. The Hopi chief was clad in dusty Levis, an old plaid shirt, and worn-out sneakers. In spite of all the terrible hardships that had befallen the Hopis, here stood a man, a chief who, while showing signs of being worn out and downtrodden, possessed dignity and presence.

His Holiness asked the chief how things were to which he responded, "not so good." The chief explained that no rain had fallen in seventy-five consecutive days and the crops were failing, creating enormous hardships not only for his tribe but for others as well. His Holiness's response was swift and immediate. From his face there arose and radiated a great wave of compassion. His Holiness promised Chief Ned that he would pray for the chief and the rest of the Hopis. What followed was a special invitation from the chief to His Holiness and his small entourage of five or so to enter the Hopi's sacred kiva. Afterward there was a brief but warm farewell between Chief Ned and His Holiness.

The Karmapa returned to the front passenger seat of the Cadillac and we began a gradual descent under a horizon-to-horizon spotless clear blue sky. We were hardly two-thirds of the way winding around and down the mesa when His Holiness began to recite a particular puja. A noticeable stillness ensued and with it a sense that we were circumambulating this mesa. We reached the desert floor and continued on a forty-minute ride to the eventual destination, a motel convention center.

It was during those forty minutes that I witnessed nothing short of sheer magic. For as His Holiness continued the puja, I watched in wonder and amazement at the unfolding of a magically sped-up transformation of a clear blue sky into something else. This miraculous display easily upstaged the scene in the Cecil B. DeMille film The Ten Commandments of the sky above Moses as he parted the Red Sea. The Hopis had lost their siddhi for rainmaking and His Holiness was simultaneously addressing that while fulfilling Padmasambhava's eighth century prophecy.

I alternated between driving and watching, transfixed by something quite unbelievable, namely this stage-by-stage, magically time-enhanced transformation of a clear blue sky into a solid steel-gray-and-black colored sky that was actually quite frightening to look at. It just doesn't fit into any conventional framework. It is challenging to behold such an intense level of concentrated, rapidly magnetized energy so suddenly made manifest from something seemingly empty.

We arrived at the motel, and I continued to watch every movement that followed: the door to the Cadillac was opened for His Holiness by an attendant monk who escorted the Karmapa about twenty-five feet directly to his ground-level motel room. The door to the room was opened, he entered, and the door closed behind him. At the exact instant that door clicked shut, there was an unearthly clap and an explosive roaring of thunder with multiple strikes of lighting, the likes of which I had never seen. Then came a rain unlike anything I had ever experienced. If rain could fall from something bigger than buckets, then that possibility was suddenly a reality for all the Hopis, Navajos, and the rest of us who witnessed all this during that late afternoon in October.

By evening both the Hopis and the Navajos who had become aware of what had occurred gathered into a very large group inside a hall at the motel's convention center. Later, the Indians and a number of Western dharma students all received the Avalokitesvara empowerment bestowed by His Holiness. What we witnessed during the empowerment was a communion between His Holiness and a wide-eyed, transfixed group of Indians that was undeniable and unforgettable. His Holiness was having a very personal rendezvous with these Indians, and the Western dharma students who had somehow made our way to this historic occasion were fortunate witnesses to this heartfelt event.

The next day a local paper or two ran front page news stories reporting that a string of seventy-five consecutive days without rain was interrupted by the visit of some notable but unfamiliar "East Indian chief" who among other things was well known for making rain. But there was a much greater headline taking place, the fulfillment of one of Padmasambhava's prophecies that had just occurred: "When the iron bird flies, when horses run on wheels, the king will come to the land of the red man." (There are easily half a dozen variations of this quote but they all essentially say the same thing).

If one contemplates what took place that day, one will surely begin to sense the implications of this historic event and of a compassion so vast and profound that it knows no boundaries, references, or limits.

December 2000


Steve Roth met the Vidyadhara Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche in London in 1968 and has been his student since 1970. Steve is a member of the Shambhala International sangha and lives in Boulder, Colorado.
 


Big Uncle

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2011, 05:54:19 AM »
People often lament the lost of Dharma in Tibet but how many people rejoice that the world received the Dharma because of the invasion of Tibet. When I really think about it, it was because of the Chinese invasion of Tibet that made the great Lamas come out of their landlocked country and cross oceans to faraway countries to spread the Dharma.

Many of us today are studying and getting to know the Dharma through books directly written or indirectly written by these great Lamas. There are many too that meet these great Lamas or their students through Dharma centers around the world. The impact of these organisations are becoming bigger and look what the Dalai Lama has achieved for his work to raise awareness of Tibetan Buddhism. Due to his great wisdom and kindness, Tibetan Buddhism is not a cult or a weird practice but a world-respected religion. We have much to rejoice for and much to learn from this.



DSFriend

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2011, 04:59:36 PM »
Interesting sharing, DS Friend.

The question I get the most is "If everyone becomes spiritual or a monk/nun, then who will go to work, earn the money, etc? Without sponsors and money, no spiritual organization can survive. So, each of us play different roles."


The wealth of the earth has remained unchanged since its formation...belongs to no one, but only changed hands throughout our countless lifetimes.

If everyone becomes a monk/nun, the issue of having to earn money will not arise anymore...I'd think. :) We have this issue due to greed and attachment...

dondrup

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2011, 07:06:00 PM »
... What's the greatest challenge where you are, where Buddhism is not the mass consciousness?

The greatest challenge is our commitment to Dharma practice.   Due to our past habituations, it is not easy to transform our minds. It is easy for many practitioners to quit when they don't get any attainments or when the goings get tough.   The spiritual journey is very similar to a marathon run.  How many actually crosses the finishing line?  Without a strong foundation in Dharma, knowing why we are in Dharma, we cannot complete our spiritual training.  Hence our reliance on the Guru and Three Jewels are of utmost importance at the outset, in the middle and at the end of our journey to Enlightenment.


DSFriend

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2011, 06:26:18 PM »
People often lament the lost of Dharma in Tibet but how many people rejoice that the world received the Dharma because of the invasion of Tibet. When I really think about it, it was because of the Chinese invasion of Tibet that made the great Lamas come out of their landlocked country and cross oceans to faraway countries to spread the Dharma.


It was predicted but we just didn't know how it was going to happen! :)  Well, we certainly live in a very exciting time.

WoselTenzin

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2011, 09:23:20 PM »
8th century famous prophecy by Guru Rinpoche foretold that, "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels, the Tibetan people will be scattered like ants across the world, and the Dharma will come to the Land of the Red Man."

I read this quote many years ago in a Tibetan Buddhist book and I was very amazed with it.  I remember thinking to myself, wow, Guru Rinpoche was indeed highly accomplished meditation master and does have clairvoyance.  At this time, eight centuries later,  airplanes and cars are common sight, Tibetan refugees which includes high Lamas and monks can be found in many countries teaching Dharma, establishing monasteries and temples. Tibetan Buddhism has taken root in many countries and Tibetan Dharma centres are all over the world.

The fall of Tibet to the Chinese was already prophesized eight centuries ago. It was the inevitable for the karma for it to happen will ripened eventually.  From a non-Tibetan and a Buddhist point of view, although I do not wish for the Tibetans to lose their country, I also see it as a blessing to the rest of the world.  If not for the Chinese who invaded Tibetan, the High Lamas who are repository of Buddhist Dharma of scripture and insight would not have escaped Tibet to go to India and the rest of the world.  The treasure of Tibetan Buddhism which has been preserved intact in Tibet for hundreds of years would not have spread throughout the world helping and benefiting so many people and we all won't be here talking in this forum.






dsiluvu

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2011, 04:26:03 AM »
I have always heard that Guru Rinpoche is also Lama Tsongkhapa is that true??? I have yet to find any actual written source saying that, if anyone has do share... it would be interesting to know how all is connected and that the whole sectarianism in Vajrayana is simply a silly creation of mens' ego and limitations not the Buddhas who are all one.

The common findings is that Guru Rinpoche himself prophesied the coming of Je Tsongkhapa... below is an extract from The Berzin Archives:

Both Buddha Shakyamuni and Guru Rinpoche prophesied Tsongkhapa’s birth and attainments. At the time of Buddha Shakyamuni, a young boy who was a previous incarnation of Tsongkhapa presented a crystal rosary to Buddha and received a conch shell in return. Buddha prophesied Manjushri would be born as a boy in Tibet, would found Ganden monastery, and would present a crown to my statue. Buddha gave the boy the future name Sumati-kirti (Blo-bzang grags-pa, Lozang-dragpa). Guru Rinpoche also prophesied a monk named Lozang-dragpa would be born near China, would be regarded as an emanation of a great bodhisattva, and would make a Buddha-statue into a Sambhogakaya representation.

Several indications before Tsongkhapa’s birth also indicated that he would be a great being. His parents, for example, had many auspicious dreams that their child would be an emanation of Avalokiteshvara, Manjushri, and Vajrapani. His future teacher, Chojey Dondrub-rinchen (Chos-rje Don-grub rin-chen), was told by Yamantaka in a vision that he (Yamantaka) would come to Amdo (A-mdo, northeastern Tibet) in a certain year and become his disciple.

Tsongkhapa was born in Tsongkha (Tsong-kha), Amdo, in 1357, the fourth of six sons. The day after Tsongkhapa’s birth, Chojey Dondrub-rinchen sent his main disciple to the parents with gifts, a statue, and a letter. A sandlewood tree grew from the spot where his umbilical cord fell to the ground. Each leaf had a natural picture of the Buddha Sinhanada (Sangs-rgyas Seng-ge sgra), and was thus called Kumbum (sKu-‘bum), a hundred thousand body images. The Gelug monastery called Kumbum was later built on that spot.


Tsongkhapa was not like an ordinary child. He never misbehaved; he instinctively engaged in bodhisattva type actions; and he was extremely intelligent and always wanted to learn everything. At the age of three, he took lay vows from the Fourth Karmapa, Rolpay-dorjey (Kar-ma-pa Rol-pa’i rdo-rje) (1340-1383). Soon after, his father invited Chojey Dondrub-rinchen to their home. The lama offered to care for the education of the boy and the father happily agreed. The boy stayed at home until he was seven, studying with Chojey Dondrub-rinchen. Just seeing the lama read, he instinctively knew how to read without needing to be taught.

During this time, Chojey Dondrub-rinchen gave the boy the empowerments of Five-Deity Chakrasamvara (Dril-bu lha-lnga), Hevajra, Yamantaka, and Vajrapani. By the age of seven, he had already memorized their complete rituals, had completed the Chakrasamvara retreat, was already doing the self-initiation, and already had a vision of Vajrapani. He frequently dreamt of Atisha (Jo-bo rJe dPal-ldan A-ti-sha) (982-1054), which was a sign that he would correct misunderstandings of the Dharma in Tibet and restore its purity, combining sutra and tantra, as Atisha had done.

At the age of seven, Tsongkhapa received novice vows from Chojey Dondrub-rinchen and the ordination name Lozang-dragpa. He continued to study in Amdo with this lama until he was sixteen, at which time he went to U-tsang (dBus-gtsang, Central Tibet) to study further. He never returned to his homeland. Chojey Dondrub-rinchen remained in Amdo, where he founded Jakyung Monastery (Bya-khyung dGon-pa) to the south of Kumbum.


DSFriend

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2011, 05:23:43 PM »

The fall of Tibet to the Chinese was already prophesized eight centuries ago. It was the inevitable for the karma for it to happen will ripened eventually.  From a non-Tibetan and a Buddhist point of view, although I do not wish for the Tibetans to lose their country, I also see it as a blessing to the rest of the world.  If not for the Chinese who invaded Tibetan, the High Lamas who are repository of Buddhist Dharma of scripture and insight would not have escaped Tibet to go to India and the rest of the world.  The treasure of Tibetan Buddhism which has been preserved intact in Tibet for hundreds of years would not have spread throughout the world helping and benefiting so many people and we all won't be here talking in this forum.


I agree that it is a great blessing that the rest of the world received Tibetan Buddhism. If Tibet have not been taken by the Chinese, would the spread of dharma been this far and wide in just a few decades? This blessing is at the expense of many having lost their country. The news media presents differing realities, that Tibet as claimed by the chinese is doing much better economically, in terms of humanitarian initiatives and there is religious freedom. If this is the case, then it is very good for Tibetans and also very good for the rest of the world. Yes?


Klein

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2012, 10:47:40 AM »
8th century famous prophecy by Guru Rinpoche foretold that, "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels, the Tibetan people will be scattered like ants across the world, and the Dharma will come to the Land of the Red Man."

I read this with an ache in my heart for the Tibetan people who have lost their country, yet at the same time, rejoice that it was the Tibetans who have kept the pure teachings for the rest of the world. It is but one lifetime alone, that we are born a Tibetan, an American, an Asian, .... it is not guaranteed that we may be born of the same nationality again in our next life.

But the causes we have created is what we will be receiving. If we think of only one life time, then how pitiful, meaningless, sad and empty our lives will be. 

Dharma has now reached the Land of the Red Man...are we ready to uphold the Dharma or will the table turn on us that Dharma will decline in our country just like how it left India and Tibet?

What's the greatest challenge where you are, where Buddhism is not the mass consciousness?

The greatest challenge would be people having preconceived ideas of how Buddhism is taught. Any deviation from their concepts would be deemed as not pure or even a cult. Therefore, it is very difficult to promote the dharma in ways that appeal to the modern masses. The traditional methods are great but do not appeal to the current generation.

Taking young people to temples is like pulling teeth. For those who actually go, their life span in the temple is very short. The only way to appeal to them would be to use what they like to attract them such as Buddhist choirs, community services, art classes and so on. From these activities, the participants can enjoy what they like and also learn Buddhism along the way.

Because people in general are creatures of habit with fixed concepts, it will take a while for them to catch up on new ideas of delivering the same ancient teachings.

negra orquida

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2012, 10:03:01 AM »
I agree with Klein
Quote
The greatest challenge would be people having preconceived ideas of how Buddhism is taught.

Where I live, most people are used to the idea that Buddhist temples should be very basic, Buddhist vegetarian restaurants should be cheap / economical...  Show them a big beautiful Dharma centre filled with mountains of pearl offerings and big flowers and they start to be suspicious on how the centre got the money, they think the centre is cheating people's money... and all these thoughts have no solid basis and yet they don't want to check further on the centre and its members and do not want to listen to logical explanations.  Sometimes I think they are actually afraid to find out more --> upturned pot.

Positive Change

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2012, 06:07:06 AM »
It has been said we are living the times of the Buddhist Renaissance and thus this interim period can be somewhat of a conundrum because there is the 'collision' of the ancient ways and the new ways. Neither is wrong but it is how these two merge to become one unified way determines the success of this merge.

Sure we are all in one way or another sometimes opposed to new ideas, new ways or anything new really. New in this case does not mean in a dated sense but more something different from the current norm.

I was thinking about his and an interesting thing popped into my head... would it not be brilliant if somehow there was a way to gel the two very different ways as one without really changing either. An 'external' factor so to speak...! Would it then not be interested to think of Dorje Shudgen as just that 'adhesive'? A protector of The modern times. Ensuring the ancient traditions are kept in line whilst 'feeding' the needs/delusions of the modern practitioner. :)

Midakpa

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Re: "When the iron bird flies and horses run on wheels..."
« Reply #14 on: February 05, 2012, 02:07:20 PM »
Why did Atisha go to Tibet? Because he already knew that if he didn't, Buddhism would be lost to the world due to a process of decay and the Muslim conquest of Eastern India. During Atisha's time, there were very few monks left in the  famous monasteries like Nalanda and Vikramasila. Dromtonpa, the chief disciple of Atisha said that "at the time the Master left India, Buddhism was, as it were, at its lowest ebb." The Tibetan scholar Tsultrim Gyalba (Jayasila) of Nagtsho who went to India to invite Atisha to Tibet said that at the time, at Odantapuri, there were 53 monks, At Vikramasila, there were about a hundred monks."

So, my point is, Atisha knew that Buddhism would decline in India but the Tibetans would preserve it for centuries. And for centuries, great masters like Lama Tsongkhapa and the line of Dalai Lamas worked hard to consolidate Buddhism in the whole of Tibet and Mongolia.

Now, with their omniscient minds, the lamas have also predicted the fall of Tibet and in order to preserve the Buddhism, they have spread the teachings far and wide. Many teachings which were "secret" in the old days in Tibet are being taught openly and preserved in books and videos. The lamas are more concerned about not losing the teachings. Why? Because conditions in the world have changed and by teaching what is effective openly, they hope more people will benefit from them.

Why did H.H. the Dalai Lama give the Avalokiteshvara empowerment to a group of Hopis who were not even Buddhists? For the same reason that they will benefit from it.

It is possible that, in order to benefit the world, the Tibetan Lamas will take rebirth outside Tibet more and more. This way, Buddhism will spread worldwide.