Lama Karma Samten Norsam
I am very fortunate to have met my friend and spiritual mentor Lama Karma Samten in New Zealand in 2000 at the Tibetan Buddhist Monastery he helped create in 1980. The Lamas, Samten & Shedrup were sent to New Zealand by HH 16th Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje, to start a Karma Kagyu Tibet Buddhist center near Kaukapakapa, NZ. Lama Samten and his early students did great, important things like translate Tibetan prayer texts into English.
I am eternally grateful for that!
Both of the Lamas knew very little English when they arrived in New Zealand. The Lamas and their students created an amazingly beautiful sanctuary on 50 acres, just north of Auckland. It includes the largest Buddha Shakyamuni statue in the southern hemisphere, many stupas and a spectacular traditional Tibetan Buddhist temple. It's a very beautiful and peaceful place!
I "discovered" the center while I was living in Auckland in 2000. I ended up visiting often to do volunteer work, things like cutting firewood, making walking trails and various other projects. It was a beautiful year in New Zealand. I am very fortunate to have been there.
I invite you read Lama's biography, visit the photo gallery of Lama's last 4 visits and read about his current teaching tour dates.
To contact Lama: firstname.lastname@example.org
The following is Lama Samten's Mother's Day 2017 message.
As a young boy I grew up in a mountain cave with my uncle. There were lots of wild animals there that I watched. I watched what they were doing and what was happening. Their situation, more or less, was like us human beings.
These days I watch nature programs on the television about wild animals and I see more.
I see their tragic situations.
One was a meerkat mother with 5 babies. She had no food and she tries to find earthworms or a scorpion to eat or anything. But in her territory nothing is there, she couldn’t find anything, so she has no milk to offer her babies. They are so hungry they almost try to eat her. Then she decides to leave behind her 5 babies to cross into wolf territory. She hopes there are worms and other things in the ground there that she could eat. But at the same time, in wolf territory, there is a wolf mother and she has her own 4 babies. Wolf mother also has no food - she has been looking and looking but returns home to find one of her baby’s dead and the others starving. But she has no food.
Wolf mother decides to go into hyena territory to find food.
Eventually, in wolf territory, the meerkat mother has found lots of worms and scorpions and she eats them. After eating them she begins to return home and to leave wolf territory. But just before she does the hungry wolf mother sees her. The meerkat tries to run away but the wolf gets her. The wolf mother eats the meerkat mother, but it is not enough.
Wolf mother has a little bit of energy now and goes into hyena territory. And there she hunts and kills one gazelle baby. After eating it she begins to return home, through hyena territory. Normally wolves eat hyena babies and because of that when one hyena mother see the wolf in their territory she chases her. Hyena catches the wolf mother - in lion territory - after a long chase, and of course eats her.
But hyena mother going towards home is seen by a lion mother. Usually hyena eats lion cubs and perhaps if she had run away from the lion she may have got away. But she didn’t. The hyena resisted, and the female lion chased her a little but didn’t attack her. Instead the lion father saw this and then attacked the hyena, killing it, to protect his own cubs. Lion never eats hyena, I don’t know why.
So the meerkat mother, the wolf mother and the hyena mother sacrificed their lives for their babies. You can see that all mothers sacrifice this much for their babies and children. Once you become a mother, whether you are a human being, an animal or an insect it is always like this.
So how can we pay back all the kind mothers? How do we save them?
If you have power or if you are able then you make her beautiful.
But beautiful is not permanent, one day it becomes ugly and not safe.
Or if you able to make her famous still it is not safe. Eventually, one day, no one will like her. Or if you are able to make her the richest person in the world, still it is not safe, as one day she will not be able to take even one penny with her.
Or if you are able to make her the most powerful in the world, still it is not safe as one day there will be someone more powerful than her.
Where ever you want to save her: in the hell realm; the hungry ghost realm; in the animal realm; in the human realm; in the demi god realm or in the god realm, everywhere is not safe because everywhere relies on causes and conditions. Nothing is permanent. They all aim for impermanence.
Instead if you really want to save your mother permanently, then you have to take your mother to the state of Buddhahood and Enlightenment, unconditional. This is what the Buddha did.
I wish and pray from the bottom of my heart that I single-handedly establish all mother sentient beings into the state of Buddhahood.
This is my wish on Mother’s Day.
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I just received this today, May 10, 2017 at 6 AM from Kate and thought you might enjoy it. Lama is in historic Merbok, an ancient and holy site related to Atisha, Serlingpa & Dharmakirti, in the Lembah Bujang Valley, Perak, north Malaysia.
"Tashi Delek everyone,
Wesak is a very important event. It reminds us of something special. It is the event of Buddha's Birth; Buddha's Enlightenment and Buddha's Paranirvana.
In other words, the Buddha was just like us.
He was born, he aged, he got sick and then he died.
This is the same as us.
What is the difference?
Buddha was Enlightened and we are not.
That part is not the same, that is a huge difference.
Buddha was very wise, with lots of wisdom. He knew; he learned; then he practiced; and then he was Enlightened.
In the beginning we don't know, then eventually maybe we know, but we are not practicing. In the end we come back to square 1.
So Buddha's Wesak event we should think about this strongly. If we have the opportunity we have to do it, according to the base, path and fruition.
If we don't do it, nobody will do it for us. There is no such thing as a free lunch. Please think about this on this special event.
Thank you for listening."