Losar, which in Tibetan means “new year,” is celebrated widely by Tibetans and Tibetan Bön and Buddhist centers throughout the world. This is the time to reflect on the passing of the old year and face the possibilities of the New Year will be celebrated by Ligmincha Texas, here are the Losar activities.
Wednesday, February 19, at 6:45 pm
We will do a ransom ceremony at our center instead of regular practice at 6:45 pm. At that time, we will use this opportunity to cleanse ourselves spiritually, to be ready for the New Year. Geshe Denma Gyaltsen will give blessing water. We will think about releasing all the negative things that happened in this year so they will not be carried into the new iron Mouse year. Please feel welcome to come and bring anyone who is interested in this beautiful experience.
Thursday, February 20th
Is the day we need to cleanse externally and clean our house, office, car, and finish projects, and generally prepare for a clean start in the next year.
Saturday morning, February 22, at 9:00 am,
We will celebrate Losar at our center. We will use traditional Tibetan ways to greet the New Year.
Each person will light a candle on the altar and we will pray together. Geshe Denma will do the Chemar ritual, a traditional auspicious ceremony using barley flour called tsampa mixed with butter. One person will hold a traditional container of tsampa and butter so each person can take a pinch, offer it lightly three times, touch it to the tongue, and then say the traditional auspicious happiness greeting –
Tashi Delek phun sum tsok,
A ma bak dro ku kham sang,
Ten du de wa to par shog.
Gongni Gongdu Phelwar Shog,”
“Auspicious goodness and abundance to you, may you be healthy and peaceful, may you find eternal peace and happiness, and may your pursuit of peace and happiness flourish day by day.”
“The first offering of money of the year can be made to the altar and the Buddhas. Everyone will wish one another a happy new year and good fortune, health and all good things. Geshela advises us to say only positive things all this day and not to engage in negativity in body, speech or mind and to continue to do prayers. Following the celebration, we will all go to lunch together to start the new year together. We also have new prayer flags in our center that you can obtain to hang traditionally at your home on the first day of Losar.
Monday, February 24
Is the actual first day of the Tibetan New Year, the Year of the iron Mouse. On this day, it is traditional to do sang cho at home in the morning if you have received this teaching or do any practice that you have received. It is also the day to hang new prayer flags at home.
On Saturday, Feb 29, at 11:00 am
we will celebrate the birthday of Nyame Sherap Gyaltsen, first abbot and founder of Tashi Menri Ling, the mother monastery of Bon in Tibet. We will also have a sangcho fire ritual, and do a fish release ritual. These are special spiritual experiences that bring blessings and merit to those who participate. Afterward we will all eat together. This day we will meet at the home of Jackie Cole in Galveston.
Tibetans in India and Nepal do many traditional things during Losar. Families who can go to the Gompa to pay their respects to the lama, circumambulate the temple, offer prayer flags to the monastery, raise prayer flags at one’s home and spend time with family. Often Tibetans will bring offerings to the Gompa, such as flowers or butter lamps or cookies for tea with the lama, and receive blessings so that all activities of the coming year will be successful.
Ligmincha Texas welcomes you to participate in all of these events, and we wish you a very
Happy New Tibetan Year of the iron Mouse.
Losar Tashi Delek!
Geshe Denma Gyaltsen is the resident lama of Ligmincha Texas. He arrived in Houston in January 2016 to serve as Ligmincha Texas’s first resident lama.
Geshe Denma was born in northern Nepal. His father brought him to Menri Monastery, India, regarded as the mother Bon monastery in exile, in 1981 to begin his program of study toward the Geshe degree. He received all the Bon teachings, initiations and transmissions in sutra, tantra and dzogchen from His Holiness Lungtok Tenpai Nyima Rinpoche, the 33rd Menri Trizin, and His Eminence Yongdzin Tenzin Namdak Rinpoche.
When he became a senior student, he was asked to teach philosophy to younger students. He successfully completed this degree program in 1996 and was awarded the Geshe certificate, which is considered equivalent to a Ph.D. in Bön Buddhist philosophy and religion.
Geshe Denma was an accomplished teacher and in 1998 was appointed, with the approval of the Tibetan government in exile, first abbot of Zhu Rishing Yungdrung Kundak-Ling Monastery, a Bon Monastery in Sikkim, India by His Holiness. He served two terms in this capacity until 2003. In addition, from the time he graduated until 2008, Geshe Denma also was active in assisting Geshe Nyima Dakpa with the Bon Children’s Home, which houses many children in Dolanji, India, providing them with food, healthcare and free education.