Kalachakra

Kalachakra Archival Videos

The Kalachakra Empowerment
Deer Park Monastery, 1981
Archival Video

Click Here for Promo for Kalachakra Television Program

In July 1981, His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet, assisted by eighteen monks of Namgyal Monastery, conferred the Kalachakra Tantra empowerment to approximately 1,500 persons at Deer Park, a center for the study of Tibetan Buddhism near Madison, Wisconsin.  The Kalachakra Empowerments are the most renowned of all the public religious events of Tibet. This Kalachakra Empowerment was the first to be conferred in America and the first to be conferred by the Dalai Lama outside Asia.  At Deer Park, the preparations of the land, buildings and logistics for the initiation required more than a year.  In Dharmasala, India, the home of the Dalai Lama and the monks of Namgyal Monastery, preparations required more than six months of special preliminary rituals, packing of ritual implements to be used in America, and the construction of a new silk applique representation (approximately 20 feet in size) of the deity, Kalachakra. 


According to traditional scriptural accounts the Kalachakra Tantra was first taught by the Buddha to Sucandra, the King of Shambala, at Sridhanyakataka in South India.  It was preserved in Shambala until about the 9th or 10th century AD when it was reintroduced into India by Cilupa. Tibet received the Kalachakra Tantra from Somanatha and Samantashribhadra in the early 11th century and the lineage of empowerments has continued uninterrupted until its transmission to America in 1981.


The Kalachakra is an Anuttara Yoga Tantra which describes a rapid path to enlightenment.  Generally speaking, it has three divisions called the External, the Internal and the Alternative.  It presents a complex system of religious practice while expounding a unique viewpoint on cosmology, physiology, psychology, history, geography and eschatology.  Eleven empowerments are required before one is empowered to practice the entire Kalachakra Tantra.  The first seven empowerments constitute initiation into the Generation Stage; the remaining four empowerments confer initiation into the Completion Stage.  At Deer Park the Dalai Lama conferred the seven empowerments of the Generation Stage.  These required three days to complete – July 15-July 17.  (see videotapes 5-16). The preliminary preparation rituals and construction of the sand mandala took place between July 6 and July 14. (See videotapes 1-4 for an edited summary of these preparations.) The concluding rituals occurred on July 18 (see videotape 17).


Perhaps for the first time in the ancient and profound history of the Kalachakra Empowerment, a combined team of Buddhist scholars and media professionals has attempted to  thoroughly documented its complex esoteric preparations and rituals.  Following is an index or guide to the 16 1/2 hour archival video series on the Kalachakra Empowerment.  The entries correspond to the video subtitle annotations on the videotapes themselves.  The first two and a half hours contain edited segments of the preparations for the Kalachakra Initiation.  The final four contain edited segments of the conclusion following the actual initiation.  The remaining 13 hours contain the entire unedited Empowerment.  It is important to note that because of inadequate original sound quality on tapes 1, 4, 5, 6 and 16 we have dubbed an additional audio recording onto these tapes; therefore, the Dalai Lama’s lips are occasionally slightly “out of sync” with his voice.  It is felt that this slight defect is a small price to pay for audibility. 


These archival videotapes resided in storage from 1983 until 2017.  Therefore, the video quality deteriorated somewhat.  Also tape number 17 was severely damaged and is not presently included in this video collection.   In spite of these unfortunate video quality issues, the archival videos provide an authentic historical record of this seminal event in the transmission of Tibetan Buddhism to America.


Many people gave their time, energy and expertise to this archival video project.
  The following are owed our deepest thanks.  Geshe Lhundup Sopa guided the Kalachakra Empowerment from its inception to conclusion.  Sharpa Tulku coordinated the production and directed the editing and annotating of the videotapes.  Bob Victor was the video camera person who recorded days and nights of preliminary rituals and Empowerments.  Mike DeMark engineered the superb audio recording.  Choyog Thupten Jamyang and Geshe Lobsang Doyno consulted on the complex procedures and meanings of the initiation.  Professor Jeffrey Hopkins translated the Dalai Lama’s instructions into English.  Glenn Trudel, Bob Rashid and Marcia Keegan documented the event by still photographs.  Elvin Jones and John Davenport coordinated the Initiation and proceedings with the actual video production.  David Patt, Roger Jackson, John Newman and Sharpa Tulku prepared scholarly materials and translations on the Kalachakra. Professor Joseph W. Elder was the Executive Producer who helped organize University of Wisconsin assistants for the project from the following departments:  South Asian Studies, International Studies and Programs, the Graduate School, the School of Nursing Television Program, the Laboratory for Recorded Instruction, the Instructional Media Distribution Center and WHA Public Television.  Unnamed are the members of Deer Park and the monks of Namgyal Monastery whose extraordinary efforts made the initiation possible, and who greatly assisted the archival video documentation in many ways.  We are deeply grateful to Marilyn Groves for providing financial assistance for digitizing the original videos.


The purpose of this series of archival research videotapes is to provide essential original source materials for the study, understanding and practice of the complex and profound Kalachakra system.  We are extremely grateful to His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama for his consent, complete cooperation and advice. 

 

KALACHAKRA ARCHIVAL VIDEOS

Clickable Index

 

TAPE

TIME IN

TIME OUT

CONTENT

1

Videotape 2

1:51

2:00

9:42

17:56

23:26

26:57

29:31

34:06

38:34

40:59

48:02

51:31

57:35

59:04

 

Full Video

Disciple Ritual

Motivating Prayer

Offering for Protection

Instructions for Mandala Offering

Mandala Offering

Meditational Instructions

Request for Teaching

Purpose for Throwing of Tooth Stick for Determining Buddha Lineage

Throwing of Tooth Stick

Transforming the Six Elements into the Six Buddha Lineages

Concluding Mandala Offering

Consecration Rituals: Selected Segments

Obtaining Permission to Construct the Mandala

Purification of Mandala Site

2.

Videotape 2

1:58

18:42

21:05

24:27

27:45

32:14

37:36

54:34

56:31

60:08

61:46

 

Full Video

Ritual of the Phurbu to Protect the Mandala

Utilizing the Land: Early Morning Ritual

Requesting the Permission

Offering Mandala to HH Dalai Lama

Exalting the Mandala and Generating Altruistic Mind (Bodhicitta)

Ritual Dance of the Ground

Elaborate Dance of the Ground

Preparation Rituals: Consecration of the Five Ritual Instruments

1. Vase Ritual

2. Chalk Line Ritual

3. Sand Particle Ritual

3.

Videotape 3

1:43

3:04

4:23

7:07

8:09

9:01

10:02

11:23

14:01

14:16

16:38

18:08

22.28

23:32

25:20

 

Full Video

3. Sand Particle Ritual (Continued)

4. Vajra Ritual

5. Bell Ritual

Placing Chalk Lines

HH Dalai Lama makes Major Chalk Lines of Mandala

Placing Chalk Lines

Monks Complete the Mandala Lines

HH Dalai Lama Places Grains Symbolizing Deities in Mandala

Main Mandala Ritual

Wisdom Lines

HH Dalai Lama Places First Colored Sand Particle

Monk Create Mandala

HH Dalai Lama Sprinkles Consecrated Water on the Completed Mandala

Decoration of Mandala

Placing Vases Around Mandala Stand

4

Videotape 4

2:00

37:02

37:56

40:47

42:56

44:00

46:02

46;57

47:54

48:41

49:15

56:14

 

Full Video

Offering Dance of Goddesses

Self Initiation of Meditational Liturgy (the Seven Initiations of Childhood.

Deity Costumes

Ritual of Eliminating Obstacles

1. Water Empowerment

2. Headdress Empowerment

3. Headdress Banner Empowerment

4. Vajra and Bell Empowerments

5. Empowerment of Conduct

6. Empowerment of Name

7. Concluding Empowerment Liturgy

Auspicious Verses and Concluding Prayer (Work of Truth

5.

Videotape 5

2:00

4:00

7:10

10:57

17:25

20:05

23:34

25:30

30:05

 

Full Video

Kalachakra Initiation: First Day

Introductory Teachings by HH Dalai Lama

Recitation of the Heart Sutra

Ritual Offering for Protection

Instructions for Mandala Offering

Mandala Offering

Geshe Lundup Sopa Presents Mandala

Instructions on Correct Motivation for taking Empowerment.

HH Dalai Lama wears Special Hat of Kalachakra Guru Lineage

6.

Videotape 6

1:42

10:21

17:25

18:31

18:52

32:59

53:24

54:42

 

Full Video

Instructions on Correct Motivation for taking Empowerments

Instructions on Correct Motivation for taking Empowerments

Verses on Correct Motivation

Conferring Inner Empowerment

Meditational Instructions

Making Requests for the Empowerment

Lamas Response

Conferring Bodhisattva Vows

7

Videotape 7

2:27

5:11

8:20

15:15

18:25

24:10

27:31

30:09

32:57

35:28

37:49

49:57

 

Full Video

Conferring Bodhisattva Vows (Continues)

Protection of the Six Elements of the Six Female Wisdom in the Form of Six Letters

Blessing of Body, Speech and Mind

Offerings for the Senses

Throwing of Tooth Stick to Determine Buddha Lineage

Giving Purification Water

Distribution of Kusha Grass for Clarifying Dreams

Distributing Protective Strings for Development of Love

Six Syllables of Buddha Lineage

Invocation of Vajrasattva

Generation of Enthusiasm

Instructions on the Examination of Dreams

8

Videotape 8

2:58

3:38

6:43

14:08

20:01

27:24

32:17

33:30

 

Full Video

Kalachakra Empowerment, 2nd Day

Recitation of Heart Sutra

Offering for Protection

Interpretation of Dreams

Mantra to Eliminate Inauspicious Dreams

Mandala Offering

Instructions on Correct Motivation

History of Kalachakra Tantra

9

Videotape 9

2:10

5:38

7:46

9:54

12:02

18:06

18:34

24:25

28:01

29:55

35:15

45:57

 

Full Video

History of Kalachakra Tantra (continued)

Entering the Mandala outside the Curtain

Generating Enthusiasm

Request for Empowerment

Distribution of Deity Costumes

Distribution of Blindfolds

Distribution of Flowers

Throwing of Tooth Stick

Receiving Purification Water

Generating Oneself as Kalachakra

Request for Boddhisattva Vows

Request for Tantric Vows

10

Videotape 10

2:21

6:23

11:49

25:01

28:07

33:18

38:15

53:09

55:12

56:27

 

Full Video

Request for Tantric Vows (continued)

25 Modes of Conduct

Development of the All Encompassing Mind of Bodhicitta and Emptiness

Entering Inside the Mandala

Prostrating to the Central Deities from the Four Gates

Pledge of Secrecy

Receiving the Wisdom Beings with the Word of Truth

Asking what Colors the Disciples See

Viewing the Interior of the Mandala

Presenting the Flower to the Kalachakra in the Mandala

11

Videotape 11

2:30

9:10

41:38

42:01

45:07

51:59

55:54

57:49

 

Full Video

Presenting the lower to the Kalachakra in the Mandala (continued)

Introducing the Deities in the Mandala

Kalachakra Initiation 3rd Day

Reciting the Heart Sutra

Offering for Protection
Mandala Offering

Request for Empowerment

Ritual for Burning Away Obstacles

12

Videotape 12

2:32

3:21

4:21

21:00

 

Full Video

Purification Ritual

Offerings for the Senses

Seven Empowerments of Childhood

1. Water Empowerment

13

Videotape 13

2:21

9:30

29:34

47:07

 

Full Video

1.  Water Empowerment (continued)

2.  Headdress Empowerment

3.  Headdress Banner Empowerment

4.  Vajra and Bell Empowerment

14

Videotape 14

2:28

34:30

54:05

56:42

 

Full Video

5. Empowerment of Conduct

6.  Empowerment of Name

7.  Empowerment of Permission

Actual Permission

15

Videotape 15

2:13

15:13

15:35

28:11

46:33

51:26

54:41

56:47

57:53

 

Full Video

Actual Permission (continued)

Related Parts

Transmission of Mantra

Empowerment of Vajra Master

Recording of Circumstances of this Kalachakra Empowerment

Advice on Root Tantric Vows

Declaration of Obedience

Concluding Mandala Offering

Geshe Sopa Presents Thanksgiving Mandala

16

Videotape 16

2:28

11:50

21:08

22:02

23:00

53:06

 

Full Video

Reciting Kalachakra Prayer

Concluding Ritual

Public Viewing of Sand Mandala

Kalachakra Ceremony 4th Day

Remarks on the Practice of Kalachakra

Thanksgiving Offering and Longevity Ceremony

17

Videotape 17

2:21

11:47

12:45

18:25

24:17

28:03

35:20

45:17

49:13

49:57

51:35

 

Video Damaged and not available

Mandala Offering for Longevity

Presentation of Dharma Wheel and Offerings to H.H. Dalai Lama

Kalachakra Offering

Concluding Mandala Presentation

Chanting Auspicious Verses

Dismantling the Mandala

H.H. Dalai Lama Describes the Mandala

Sweeping up the Sand of the Mandala

People Receiving Sand Particles

Auspicious Verses

Prayer of Word of Truth