Monlam Chenmo (Thousand Buddha Prayer)
As followers of Lama Tsonkhapa, the Chotrul Monlam Chenmo is the biggest prayer festival held at DNKL. There are many benefits to observing this day of prayer. According to the Sutra Revealing the Magnificent Miracle Manifestation “...if a follower of the Tathagatas, the Ones Gone to Suchness, with the intention to make offerings to them bears their miraculous manifestation in mind for a moment, and with devotion and aspiration endeavors to make offerings to the Tathagatas in his mind for a day, a night or any amount of time, he gradually will reach beyond the limit of suffering, and will actualize the State of Utter Purity and Excellence, the Completely Perfected Enlightenment.”
As this sutra also explains, our prayers will bring about an end to war, liberation from all illnesses, long life for the genuine spiritual guides, and the flourishing of the beneficial instructions extending to the farthest reaches of the universe and world peace which will come by accumulating merit, reducing destructive emotions and purifying negative karma. The Buddha performed miracles over a period of fifteen days in response to a challenge from six rival teachers. The fifteen days we observe are merit-multiplying days in which any virtue created is magnified millions of times. This year the Day of Miracles falls on February 27th.
Lama Tsongkhapa established the Monlam Chenmo on Miracle Day in Tibet in 1409 and the celebration lasts for fourteen days. It is known as the Great Prayer Festival, where thousands of people, lay and ordained alike, pray, and make offerings of butter lamps, flowers, fruit, incense, and musical instruments for all the Buddhas, Bodhisatvas, holy beings, and dharma. They also offer tea, food, and money for the Sangha. Each day includes prayers, teachings on Buddha’s life story and debate. Now, since their exile in India, monastics have continued to faithfully observe this practice.
Because it is not practical to observe fourteen days of all these activities as has been done in Tibet and India, we honor the Thousand Buddha offering at DNKL on this one special day in remembrance of Buddha’s days of miracles and of all its vast benefits. This year we will hold the Thousand Buddha Offering on March 5, 2017 from 10:00-3:30. If you have concerns about the world, and the sufferings of all sentient beings then this is very nice time for you to join with us to do this prayer.