In memory of the 35 years spent by our Rinpoche, Chhimed Rigdzin in Shantiniketan and to keep the connection alive, Tulku Ugen had the wish for quite sometimes to introduce the lamas of Khordong Byangter Monastery to Shantiniketan and part of the earlier life of Rinpoche in India. A place where he was known to all and referred as Lamaji, a place where people still remember him and his family very vividly, till today. A place from where he got first connected with westerners.
Over the past 6 years Shantiniketan students came several times in groups of 40 and even more to visit the gompa, sometime even spending a night as guests of the Gompa. These visits were always wonderful moments of cultural exchange between the lamas and the students of Shantiniketan in a mix of dances, songs and poetry.
So this time it was our lamas turn to go to Shantiniketan and then Kolkata, so that it broadens their mind about the world they live in. For many of them it was even their first train ride, so off they went accompanied by Tulku Ugen and the two Australian volunteers.
Shantiniketan is divided in several different schools and our lamas were invited by several of them to share breakfast and lunch with them, engage in cultural exchange, perform in dance classes, taking part in their weekly program, visiting different handicrafts classes and attending prayers at the Brahma temple of Shantiniketan.
For all of them it was a very exciting and eye opening moment and the people of Shantiniketan were overjoyed to meet a group of young lamas who are disciples and monks of CR Lama. Never before such visit had happened at Shantiniketan, so it has been a memorable moment for all.
Next was the discovery of Kolkata, the state capital city of West-Bengal together with the visit of the Planetarium, the Science city, the Zoo, the Botanic garden and at the end the Aquatic Park to make the trip totally memorable.
We believe such trip is very beneficial in the lamas curriculum, very few gompas offer their monks such opportunities within their education program and we are glad it could be done with your support.