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A Butter Lamp House for Samye Dzong London

Posted on 23 Jan 2021

A Butter Lamp House for Samye Dzong London

For quite some time we have had plans to build a butter lamp house in the Samye Dzong London courtyard, and this idea is now becoming a reality.

The beautiful teaching below by Venerable Thrangu Rinpoche in November 2020 was the inspiration that finally caused the seed to germinate and sprout into action. The process began with Stevan Hartung aka Jinpa, an award winning furniture maker and Dharma practitioner, drawing up a design. He is now working on the butter lamp house in his workshop in Ireland and we wanted to share the good news with you. 

May obstacles and ignorance be dispelled.

"This year, there have been many disasters in the world – wildfires, floods, tornados, earthquakes and epidemics.  These have occurred because of our karma from the past.  It is taught that there are two types of karma: the shared karma of appearances and the particular karma of experience.   These bad karmic results occur because of all sentient beings' bad karma, and they may also happen due to the bad actions individuals have accumulated.  What we need to  do to help is to accumulate the two accumulations of merit and wisdom.  Of these two, the accumulation of merit includes offering to the three jewels and giving to the unfortunate.  Doing this has great benefits.  


One type of offering we can make is to light lamps.  If we do this without attachment but with an altruistic attitude, when we do it as a method to awaken all sentient beings from the sleep of ignorance with the intention of protecting sentient beings from suffering, then we have a good heart, and the offering is good.   Offering lamps in this way will bring its own particular great benefit.  So if we offer lamps as a way to accumulate merit, it will dispel the darkness of ignorance.  


These days, because of our bad karma, we feel a lot of greed and hatred.  We experience a lot of ignorance.   Because of ignorance, we create a lot of suffering, such as the sufferings of war and weapons.   As a way to prevent this, we offer lamps and pray to dispel the darkness of ignorance and make prayers.  We can offer 100,000 or 10,000 lamps.  Even if we can't do that many, if many people get together and offer hundreds or thousands of lamps, it is great merit.   For ourselves individually, it will help prevent obstacles, adversity, illness and suffering and it will also help others.   It will bring happiness and pleasure to the whole world.   Thus it is truly excellent to offer lamps and gather the accumulation of merit.   It will bring great benefit."


Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche 9 Nov 2020


Kindly transcribed by Vicky Chanin.