Monks at Kalachakra

Monks leaving from the 2002 Kalachakra.

On January 12, the Dalai Lama began preliminary teachings (on the 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva and Lamp of the Path to Enlightenment) in preparation for the Kalachakra Initiations, which will be bestowed from January 17, 2003, in Bodh Gaya, India.

Approximately 100,000 people have arrived for the teachings. Organizers say people are continuing to arrive and expect the number to increase as the day of the initiations draws near.

There are 1,600 Tibetans from Tibet, including 52 monks and nuns, according to Mr. Thupten Tashi Anyetsang, Secretary of the Tibetan Department of Religion and Culture, which is coordinating the organization of the teachings.

The Dalai Lama arrived in Bodh Gaya on January 7, 2003, and has been visiting the different Buddhist monasteries in the region and undertaking the preparatory rituals for the teachings.

The 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva is a text written by Ngulchu Thogme Sangpo on the Buddhist practice of developing bodhicitta and living one’s life as a Bodhisattva, an enlightened being.

Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment is a text composed by the eleventh-century Indian Buddhist Master Atisha Dipankara, which sets forth the entire Buddhist path within the framework of three levels of motivation on the part of the practitioner.