The Dalai Lama will return to Madison this July, where thousands
of fans expect to see His Holiness during his seventh visit to the city.
Returning to Madison for the second time in two years, the
Dalai Lama?s schedule for the July 19-24 visit includes a public talk, a series
of teachings, a special ceremony and a private inauguration of the new Deer
Park Center?s temple.
The Dalai Lama is a revered Buddhist leader and 1989 Nobel
Peace Prize winner. His Holiness spreads messages of compassion, kindness and
religious harmony to thousands of followers all over the world.
Penny Paster, longtime student of the Dalai Lama and
coordinator of His Holiness? visit, said she is expecting the events to attract
followers and supporters across the United States, Canada and even Mongolia.
A traditional Buddhist ceremony called Tenshug ? a rite in
which the Dalai Lama?s followers wish for his continuous longevity ? will be
held at the Coliseum of the Alliant Energy Center July 24 from 9:30 to 11:30
Jampa Khedup, vice president for the Wisconsin Tibetan
Association, said Tenshug is a very auspicious and spiritual ceremony.
?We are asking him to stay with us and give us spiritual
instruction in our lives,? he added.
Tenshug has never been performed outside India or Tibet.
The fact that His Holiness will be receiving this ceremony in Madison is
profound, Paster said.
?We are getting a chance to give back to him for all that
he has given people,? Paster said. ?That is what makes this so auspicious.?
At the public talk, the Dalai Lama will touch on two
Buddhist texts, provided free for the audience in English, Tibetan, Chinese and
?So many people have an interest in hearing a Nobel Prize
winner speak,? Paster said. ?He speaks to all people.?
The Dalai Lama will also attend a private blessing
ceremony for Deer Park?s new temple. During the Dalai Lama?s prior visits to
Deer Park, he blessed the ground before construction began and blessed the
building in early stages of construction.
The July 2008 visit will be the main consecration for the
new temple, Paster said.
The temple was a $6.1 million project funded by
unsolicited donations. The center is in debt, Paster said, but receives
frequent donations and is working its way out of the deficit.
Paster said Deer Park is looking forward to the Dalai
Lama?s visit, adding, ?We are very happy and feel very fortunate.?
The Dalai Lama will give a public talk at 3 p.m. July 19
at the Coliseum of the Alliant Energy Center, and teachings will be held at the
Coliseum July 20-23.