Segyu Gaden Phodrang Monastery

Past Events

Saka Dawa 2019

Schedule: 16 – 18 June 2019 (Tibetan 16/04/2146 – 18/04/2146)

Segyu Gaden Phodrang Monastery invite you to join us for our annual Saka Dawa Avaloketishvara fasting ritual

June 16

4:30am: Eight Mahayana Precepts followed by start of 1000 Arms Avaloketishvara with extensive prostration and mantra recitation in 3 sessions  4:30am-8am, 9am-11:30am, 2:30pm-4:30pm

June 17 (Full Moon Day and most important) this day is fasting and silence

4:30am: Eight Mahayana Precepts followed by start of 1000 Arms Avaloketishvara with extensive prostration and mantra recitation in 3 sessions    4:30am-8am, 9am-11:30am, 2:30pm-4:30pm

June 18

4:30am: Receiving Blessing of Vase Water and breaking fast with thin porridge followed by conclusion of 1000 Arms Avaloketishvara puja

You are welcome to attend all or any of the sessions but we encourage you to take the vows of the Eight Mahayana Precepts. If you have received before you can do in front of statue or image if unable to attend 4am session. If you have not received precepts before then please inform us and we will arrange for you to receive transmission. Without taking vows fasting is just suffering

Clarification on fasting.  If doing a full fast: Lunch on the 16th will be last meal until breaking fast on the morning of the 18th. Water can be taken on 16th, but no water, food, or talking on the 17th. If you are observing the full moon day fast (17th) you will have only lunch meal on that day; no food, water or talking until breaking fast on morning of the 18th

If you would like to join or want more information you can contact us by phone:  +977981018962 for Tibetan or Nepali +9779862277804 for English   

Or email us at sedgyued@gmail.com

What is Saka Dawa ?

Saka Dawa (Dawa means “month” in Tibetan and the term Saka, comes from Tibetan astrology, and the Saka star which is associated with the full moon of the fourth lunar month) is the most sacred of Tibetan Buddhist holidays, We celebrate the birth (actually entry into mother’s womb), enlightenment and parinirvana (word commonly used to refer to nirvana-after-death, which occurs upon the death of the body of someone who has attained nirvana during his or her lifetime) of the Buddha Shakyamuni.

The Saka Dawa month observations begin on the 1st day of the fourth Tibetan month, which in 2019 begins today, June 4th. Most holy of all is the full moon day of Saka Dawa, the 15th day of the month, which is the date most commonly associated with not only Buddha’s birth but also his enlightenment and parinirvana. In 2019, the 15th day of the fourth Tibetan month is June 17th.

The merit of any good deeds that you perform during this month are considered to be multiplied many times over — by as much as one hundred million times — so it is an excellent time to dedicate ourselves to all kinds of spiritually positive actions.

Some good actions that are commonly taken to accumulate merit during Saka Dawa, especially on the 15th day, are:

*Refraining from eating meat
*Offering donations to monasteries or nunneries, or to individual monks or nuns
*Praying and reciting mantras (such as the refuge prayer, the Om Mani Padme Hum mantra, or the Buddha Shakyamuni’s mantra Om Muni Muni Maha Muniye Soha
*Making prostrations around holy sites
*Giving money to beggars
*Lighting butter lamps
*Making pilgrimages to holy places
*Buying all kinds of animals that are going to be killed and releasing them. (Fish, for example)
*Circumambulating around stupas or other holy places. (Basically, this means walking clockwise around a holy site while praying or reciting mantras.)

It is very common to take the eight Mahayana precepts for twenty-four, forty eight or seventy two hours during Saka Dawa, especially on either the full moon day or new moon day – the 15th day or the 30th day of Saka Dawa. The full moon day is considered to be more powerful for the accumulation of merit. Some monks and practitioners choose to observe these precepts for the entire month. The eight Mahayana precepts are:

1. Avoid killing, directly or indirectly
2. Avoid stealing and taking things without the permission of their owner.
3. Avoid sexual contact.
4. Avoid lying and deceiving others.
5. Avoid intoxicants: alcohol, tobacco and recreational drugs.
6. Avoid eating more than one meal that day.
7. Avoid sitting on a high, expensive bed or seat with pride. Also avoid sitting on animal skins.
8. Avoid wearing jewelry, perfume, and make-up. Avoid singing, dancing or playing music with attachment.

By refraining from food and drink and taking the suffering of hunger and thirst, we think “by this may I purify all negative created to be born as a hungry ghost and may the karma of those living as hungry ghosts now be swiftly purified.” Some practitioners will not even swallow during this 24 hour period and keep a jar to spit in. We also observe silence and we think “by this may I purify all negative karma of speech that I have created to be born in lower realms, and may the karma of those living in lower realms now be swiftly purified.” We make extensive prostrations this day and think “by this may I purify all negative actions created by body, speech and mind that will cause rebirth in lower realms, and may the karma of those living in lower realms now be swiftly purified.”

Done with good motivation, wishing for liberation for yourselves and others will create vast amounts of merit.
If anyone would like to make offerings during this month the common offering for butterlamps during Saka Dawa is $3.00 for small, $5 for medium, and $10 for very large. Using the donate link below you can include any dedications or special request you would like read during the pujas in the comment box

We welcome all visitors and guests to come and learn more about this precious gem of a monastery.

Segyu Gaden Phodrang Monastery

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Segyu Gaden Phodrang Monastery