september 2009 programmes

  

monday 31st august to saturday 5th september (sunday closed)
11 am to 6.30 pm -
Exhibition and sale of thangkas by
Tusita Divine Art 

saturday 5th september
6.30 pm ‘Traditional Songs of Tibet’ by Kelsang Chukie Tethong accompanied by Tsewang Choeden & Pheruk Lhakp

friday 11 september
6.30 pm “Emerging truths behind the News” by Come Carpentier
 

saturday 12th september
6.30 pm “Song & Sitar” a sitar performance by father & son Ustad Sayeed Khan & Adnan Khan
Accompanied by Arshad Khan on Tabla.

monday 14 september
6.30 pm
"Tara Practice and Mantra Recitation” by Chamtrul Rinpoche 

friday 18th september  - Talk western music-  to be confirmed 

saturday 19th september
6.30 pm ‘
Looking at Chaunsatha Yoginis :  Beauty,  Power and Secrecy’ an illustrated talk by  Nilima Chitgopekar

 

 

 

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monday 31st august to saturday 5th september (sunday closed)
11 am to 6.30 pm -
Exhibition and sale of thangkas by
Tusita Divine Art 

Genuine antique Thangkas are rarely available even to the seasoned traveler. They are hidden away in monasteries (gonpas), temples (lakhangs) or small family held temples (chokhangs). They are important objects of ritual worship in Vajrayana (Tibetan) Buddhism. In a unique attempt to preserve their exquisite heritage art, two friends, Kishore Thukral and Sunil Nandrajog have set up an enterprise, Tusita Divine Art, named after the heaven in which Maitreya, the Future Buddha is said to presently reside. Tusita have undertaken to digitally reproduce the thangkas of the small chokhangs in different sizes on 410 gsm Hahnemuhle canvas to give them the archival look. They are then stitched in the traditional fashion with contemporary fabric, and each reproduction is sold accompanied by a well-researched and detailed description written in close consultation with senior monks and with reference to authoritative works by scholars of Tibetan Buddhist art.  

A major part of the earnings is given back to the chokhangs to help them maintain and restore the originals.

This is an exceptional exhibition intense in the five colours of Vajrayana Buddhism, rich in visual symbolism, steeped in ritual and spiritual meaning.  

 

 saturday 5th september
6.30 pm ‘Traditional Songs of Tibet’ by Kelsang Chukie Tethong accompanied by Tsewang Choeden & Pheruk Lhakp



The most difficult thing that a people have to face is to be exiled from their country and have to live on the goodwill of their neighbours. The strongest impulse is to retain their language and cultural heritage.

Chukie was born in Nepal and raised in a musical family. Both she and her sister were chosen to join the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA), Dharmsala. After studying there for 11 years she became an acclaimed solo singer but decided to run a restaurant in Nepal and in Holland for many years.

However after her first live concert in Holland in 1996, she has taken up music full time and has performed solo in several live concerts in Europe, Canada, Taiwan as well as in the US. She sang at the two Freedom Concerts organized by Milarepa Fund in New York in 1997 and in Washington, D.C., in 1998.In the same year, Chukie with her sister, Namgyal Lhamo, and friend, Topden Gyatso, founded the group Gangchenpa. The groups first recorded CD, Voices from Tibet, was released in 2000. She performed at the celebration of the 60th anniversary of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s enthronement ceremony, in Dharmsala and the 50th Anniversary of his Assuming Temporal authority.

This evening Chukie will sing the songs of Tibet which interest her most from the pure, classical songs of Western and Central Tibet known as Înangma toesheyÌ and the nomadic songs of Eastern and North Eastern Tibet known as ÎLuÌ. She will also sing some folk songs from different parts of Tibet.



 

friday 11 september
6.30 pm “Emerging truths behind the News” by Come Carpentier

  

Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (War, Famine, Pestilence and Death)
by Viktor Vasnetsov (1887).

The Greek word apocalypse means "unveiling" and we do indeed live in apocalyptic times if we watch the number of staggering, hitherto hidden realities that are recently  becoming apparent and upsetting our traditional vision of the world order: not only is the only superpower found to have been bankrupt for several years and to have lived off the other economies of the world through irresponsible debt creation but we find that many of the world's largest corporations, formerly hailed as examples of transparent, efficient management, are in fact deeply corrupt and manipulative. Furthermore, The Federal Reserve Bank of the US and those of some other countries should be seen for what they really are: private credit monopolies that work for their owners (Wall Street in the case of the FRB) often at the cost of the vast majorities, creating bust after boom through their control of currencies...Eliot Spitzer, the ex-Attorney General and Governor of New York has gone on record to say that the FED is a "Ponzi scheme, an inside job"...Many other such revelations, even more shocking, are reaching the wider public. 

This illustrated talk will cover about half a dozen major disclosures, quoting only official statements and government-related sources which can only be ignored by those who are in denial. The obvious conclusion leads us to form a very different view of the world we live in. 

Come Carpentier is currently the Convener of the Editorial Board of the World Affairs Journal, a quarterly publication dedicated to international issues. In 1999, he co founded the Telesis Academy in Switzerland dedicated to the study of the ancient wisdom of East and West in the contemporary scientific context. He has been associated with the Nuclear Disarmament Forum and the Foundation of Global Dialog in Switzerland, the Global Commission to Finance the United Nations, the Business Council for Sustainable Development in Paris amongst many others. He has spoken at The Attic on a wide variety of subjects.

 

saturday 12th september
6.30 pm “Song & Sitar” a sitar performance by father & son Ustad Sayeed Khan & Adnan Khan
. Accompanied by Arshad Khan on Tabla. 

Sitarists don’t normally sing but Ustad Sayeed Khan received his initial taaleem (musical education) from his vocalist father Ustad Waheed Khan and this vocal style (gayaki ang) is clearly visible in his rendition of the sitar. He will emphasize this aspect of his music by singing to illustrate the style. Both he and his son belong to the ‘Dilli Gharana of Music’. 

He is a ‘A’ grade artist of All India Radio and has traveled extensively in the US, Canada, England and the Middle East. His awards include Sur Mani, Sur Singar and the Sanskriti award in London. 

Adnan Khan received his sitar taaleem under his grandfather late Ustad Zafar Ahmed Khan Saheb and is now learning from his father. He has participated in the Harballabh Festival in Jalandhar and in festivals in Patiala, Chandigarh, Mumbai and Delhi.

 

monday 14 september
6.30 pm
"Tara Practice and Mantra Recitation” by Chamtrul Rinpoche

Tara is a fully enlightened Buddha, who can be understood at both the relative and ultimate levels. At a relative level Buddha Tara displays characteristics that can be understood by ordinary, conceptual human minds and she is associated with such beneficial acts as conferring longevity, curing illness, stopping wars and giving prosperity. At the level of absolute truth she is beyond understanding or analysis. Her true nature is free from mental fabrication and the relative concepts of space and time.

 

At all levels, from the Hinayana up through the Vajrayana, Buddha Shakyamuni used the language of the great Mother to explain the ultimate true nature. In fact at their core all the teachings of the Buddha are none other than explanation of the nature of the Mother. She is given several different titles, such as Mother of all Buddha’s and Mother of all Samsara and Nirvana. Tara’s enlightened activities are numerous and powerful beyond comprehension.

 

Tara is known primarily as “The one who liberates” especially in the form of Green Tara, she liberates sentient beings from eight fears. Tara’s enlightened activity has the potential to protect human being who connects with her practice from all fears and causes of these fears. She has special resonance as a source of female spiritual wisdom. 

 

Maa Taram….

 

Tara practice: connects our minds and hearts to Mother Tara and follows the model of her fearless and compassionate behaviour.

 

Tara mantra recitation: Mantra is a profound way of Tara practice. Sound is a gateway or bridge between the world of form and the formless. The sacred sound of the Mantra contains the method and wisdom of the path.

Chamtrul Lobsang Gyatso Rinpoche is a teacher of Tibetan Buddhist philosophy. Trained by many High Masters of different Tibetan Buddhist traditions, his main Root Guru was His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche from the Nyingmapa School. Chamtrul Rinpoche has been teaching for more than 17 years to monks and lay people in Tibet, India and many other countries.

Always ready to give Dharma teachings wherever they are needed, Rinpoche dedicates his life to help people find inner peace. Through his invaluable knowledge and practical advice, Rinpoche compassionately guides his students toward ultimate peace and happiness.

In his own words: "Without discriminating against anybody based on their sex, race, creed and so forth, I wish them to enjoy excellent peace and harmony. I try to the best of my ability to promote the view, meditation and conduct of non-violence, which is the indispensable source for the spread and enhancement of the inner peace of mind. "

Although his main activity is teaching, Rinpoche also supports his monastery in the Golok region (East Tibet) and the nomad population of the area. A variety of humanitarian projects related mainly to health and education are currently being developed in partnership with the non-profit organization (NGO), Bodhicitta.

friday 18th september  - Talk western music-  to be confirmed 

saturday 19th september
6.30 pm ‘
Looking at Chaunsatha Yoginis :  Beauty,  Power and Secrecy’ an illustrated talk by  Nilima Chitgopekar

                                                        Popularly referred to as the ‘Chaunsatha’ or sixty-four Yoginis, even though the numbers may be either eighty-one or forty, this set of goddesses appear in sculpture in the ninth and tenth centuries C.E. Within the realm of group-divinities, the Yogini cult, has sustained its power to bewilder and captivate. Undoubtedly the inherent arcane nature of the yoginis, evident in their visual representation as well as the random mention of them in literature, is responsible for this aura of enigma. Besides this, they also share an extremely important feature with some other female group divinities, that is, they were not subsumed into the cult of male figures. In a culture where many an authoritative goddess was, ‘spousified’, ‘consortified’ or ‘husbanded’, this self-dependence is a trait brimming with potential to illustrate yet more varied belief systems and cultural values.  Historically, their apparent appearance at a point in time and then evident ‘disappearance’ within a few centuries is still another contributory factor to their sense of allure. This talk, with the help of visuals, is an attempt to unravel some of the mysteries pertaining to the yoginis.

Nilima Chitgopekar is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at the Jesus and Mary College, Delhi University. The papers she teaches are, The History of Early India, The History of the USA and Transformations in History. Her research, for the most part, has been in the History and Development of Indian Religions, which she has taught at the post-graduate level for several years.

In her writings and the lectures she delivers, she tries to unravel the complexity of Hindu gods and goddesses by combining the study of religion with historical data, which among other things includes, mythology, inscriptions, iconography and scriptures. More recently she has been testing this data in conjunction with elements of faith. 

A poet, who has been published in anthologies and journals, she has presented her poems in readings in India and in the USA.