Kagyu Monlams

The Kagyu Monlams: Great accumulation of wishes for the happiness of all beings

The Kagyu Monlams is one of the most important events for Buddhist practitioners of the Karma Kagyu school. During an entire week, together, they recite wishing prayers for the happiness of all beings. Usually, it takes place each year in Bodh Gaya, India, the place where the Buddha Shakyamuni attained enlightenment, but because of the pandemic, the event has been transmitted online, internationally broadcasted from the Karmapa’s monastery in Rumtek. This allows people from all over the world to gather for several days and to recite prayers that emanate from the Buddhas’ and Bodhisattvas’ deep wisdom.

The strength of these aspirations is multiplied by the gathering of thousands of practitioners who unite their wishes for the well-being and spiritual development of all beings.

We aspire to peace and prosperity for all sentient beings. Above all, we aspire for enlightenment for all sentient beings. From a Buddhist perspective, this is the ultimate aim in life. It is a state of cessation of dukkha or confusion, and this is what we aspire to.

Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa

Since 1996, Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa has been leading prayers of aspiration, accompanied by other great lamas of the lineage. The beneficial effect of these prayers is intensified by the presence and aspiration of great Bodhisattvas.

Prayers of Aspiration

Prayers of aspiration recited during the Kagyu Monlams are a precious way to dissipate the confusion of the ordinary mind. When we practice with this wish, our aspirations are naturally directed towards the cessation of what is unfavorable and the cultivation of all that is beneficial.

That’s the best we can get, and may be, that’s all we need to get: The clearing away of confusion.

Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa

Among these prayers of aspiration, are the Five Royal Sutras among which is the “Aspiration Prayer of Samantabhadra”. The latter focuses on the highly altruistic wish of attaining enlightenment in order to lead all beings to that state.

About the Kagyu Monlams

Since 1996, the Kagyu Monlams has taken place in Bodh Gaya, in the presence of the greatest masters of the lineage, such as the Karmapa or Shamarpa. Practitioners face the Mahabodhi Temple, the very place where the historic Buddha meditated until he realized enlightenment.

In 2020, concerned with the practitioners’ health and well-being, Karmapa invited people to join the monks in Rumtek, India, online. This allowed thousands of practitioners in Asia as well as in the West, to continue to gather and recite these wishing prayers, despite the pandemic.

Like last year, practices will be transmitted live, online, from Rumtek. Kundreul Ling will participate in the Kagyu Monlams from December 8th to the 14th. We invite you to join us in person at the Karmapa’s temple in Le Bost or online.

Video live from the Kagyu Monlams 2017

Join the prayers of aspiration led by the Karmapa, in the presence of H.E. the 4th Djamgon Kongtrul, Migyur Drakpa Senge, and H.E. the 3rd Beru Khyentse Rinpoche and many great masters of the lineage as well as Mipham Rinpoche. Thousands of students, monks, nuns and other venerables gathered in Bodhgaya, in India, to take part in the recitations of wishes for the happiness of all beings.