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Positive Change

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A Tour of a Different Kind!
« on: July 31, 2012, 01:22:28 PM »
The Relic Tour

Lama Zopa Rinpoche, the Spiritual Founder of the Relic Tour, has collected sacred relics of the Buddha and other Buddhist masters. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has offered eight relics of Shakyamuni Buddha to the collection. The Tour began in 2001, over the years some visitors at Relic Tour events have offered relics that they have been entrusted with, to the collection. Their intention is that many others may benefit.

This incredible generosity and kindness means that the collection is becoming larger and more varied, and now includes masters from many different Buddhist traditions. This reflects the Relic Tour's non-sectarian approach and universal message. There is now more than collection touring so that there can be simultaneous events in different parts of the world multiplying the blessings.

Here is more information about some of the relics presently in the collection:

Part One

Kasyapa Buddha
Shakyamuni Buddha is the historical buddha, the one we most often refer to as simply “the Buddha”. According to the Mahayana Buddhist tradition, Shakyamuni was the fourth of the “1,000 Buddhas of this Fortunate Aeon”, each of whom is predicted to teach on Earth.

Kasyapa Buddha preceded Shakyamuni Buddha. He was the third buddha of this aeon. The first two buddhas were Krakuchand Buddha and Kanakamuni Buddha.

Relic and Source

The tooth relic came from Tibet and was offered to Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 2002. It was originally enshrined in a statue of Gyalwa Ensapa in Tibet. When the statue was destroyed during China’s invasion, the relic was secretly saved by a Tibetan family.

A Tibetan monk of the Sakya tradition then purchased it and the relic was split into three parts; one part was offered to His Holiness Sakya Trizin, another to His Holiness Chogye Trichen and the third part was offered to Lama Zopa Rinpoche.

His Holiness Chogye Trichen placed the relic offered to him inside the crown of a 3-storey Maitreya Buddha statue in a monastery beside the Great Stupa in Boudhanath, Nepal. Those who were present said they observed rainbows in the sky around the stupa when he did this.

The middle sized relic came from the Tibetan Government Relic House. His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s physician, Wangyal, offered it to Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1999.
The remaining three smaller relics (only two are pictured here) appear to have spontaneously manifested during the Heart Shrine Relic Tour.

Shakyamuni, the Historical Buddha
Prince Siddharta, who was destined to become Shakyamuni Buddha, was born to Queen Mahamaya and King Shudhodana of Kapilavastu in approximately 563 BCE at Lumbini, which was near the modern border between India and Nepal.

Growing up in the palace, he enjoyed a life of privilege and luxury. Then, when he was 29 years old, Siddharta travelled outside of the palace for the first time in his life and was deeply shocked by what he saw – a sick man, an old man, a dead man and a monk. He became convinced that all of life was pervaded by suffering and from that moment he renounced his royal life, left his wife and child in the palace, and set out to find enlightenment.

After years of engaging in very austere practices which nearly led to his starvation, he realised that this was not the true path to liberation from suffering. He drank a bowl of nourishing milk, sat down beneath the Bodhi tree in Bodhgaya, and vowed not to rise again until he had found enlightenment. By morning he had achieved his goal.

Buddha Shakyamuni’s first teaching was about The Four Noble Truths: all life is pervaded by suffering; suffering has a cause; suffering can end; and the path that leads to the end of suffering. One of the Buddha’s great skills was his ability to teach according to the capacity of those listening to him. This resulted in a wide variety and number of teachings called sutras.

At the age of 80, in Kushinagar, the Buddha said, “All conditioned phenomena are impermanent. This is the last teaching of the Tathagata.” He then passed into parinirvana (final liberation at the time of death).

Lumbini, Bodhgaya, and Kushinagar are still among the places of holy pilgrimage for millions of Buddhists today.

Relic and Source


- The four identical relics were offered by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.
- The blood relics came from Meiktila Relic Museum in Burma and were offered by the abbot who manages the museum.
- The head relics were offered to Lama Zopa Rinpoche by his student, Wu Wen Yuen in Taipei, Taiwan, in 2001.


- The small granular relics were offered by a Thai monk who carried them to Malaysia.
- The white, flake-like relics came from Meiktila Relic Museum in Burma.
- The one large and three smaller relics were offered by a senior monk in Borobudur, Indonesia.

Shakyamuni Buddha's Heart Disciples: Venerables Shariputra & Maudgalyayana
Venerable Shariputra and Venerable Maudgalyayana were among those the Buddha first accepted as his disciples. Both Shariputra and Maudgalyayana were born near Rajgir and later, retiring to their respective villages, they achieved enlightenment before the Buddha’s passing into parinirvana (final liberation at the time of death).

Regarding these two heart disciples, the Buddha said, “Monks, follow Shariputra and Maudgalyayana; associate with Shariputra and Maudgalyayana… . Monks, Shariputra is like a mother and Maudgalyayana is like a foster mother to a child.”

Relic and Source


These relics were offered to Lama Zopa Rinpoche by his student, Wu Wen Yuen in Taipei, Taiwan, in 2001.

Venerable Ananda
Ananda was the Buddha’s cousin and served as his personal attendant for 25 years. One day, Ananda was passing a well near a village and he asked Pakati, a young woman, for water. Pakati replied, “Oh monk, I am too humbly born to give you water to drink. Do not ask for my service lest your holiness be contaminated, for I am of low caste.” Ananda said, “I ask not for caste but for water.” Pakati’s heart leapt with joy and she offered water to Ananda. Having heard that Ananda was a disciple of the Buddha, she asked the Buddha, “Oh Lord, help me and let me live in the place where your disciple Ananda dwells so that I may see him and serve him, for I love Ananda.” Buddha understood her heart and said, “Pakati, your heart is full of love, but you do not understand your own sentiments. It is not Ananda that you love, but his kindness. Accept the kindness that you have seen him practice toward you and practice it toward others.”

Relic and Source

These relics were offered to Lama Zopa Rinpoche by his student, Wu Wen Yuen in Taipei, Taiwan, in 2001. During 2003, the relics of Ananda changed colour and a new one appeared, much larger than the other relics.

Kondanna, Rahula

Bodhisattva Chophak
Yeshe Tsogyel
Lama Atisha
Geshe Chekawa
Lama Tsongkhapa
Gyalwa Ensapa
His Holiness the First Karmapa
Pabongka Rinpoche
Lama Thubten Yeshe
His Holiness the 15th Karmapa
Gwang-Chin Master
His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche
Kalu Rinpoche
Geshe Yeshe Tobden
Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche
His Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa
Ribur Rinpoche
Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche
Geshe Lama Konchog
Bokar Rinpoche
Terma Relics
Vajrasattva Sky Relic
Relics from 500 Arhats
Marpa the Translator
Jamyang Chokyi Lödro
Rigdzin Trinley
Chokgyur Lingpa (Chöling) Tertön
Master Seong-cheol Sunim