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01july2011kalachakraDharamshala: On July 1, officials organizing the Kalachakra 2012 Initiation held a press conference at the hall of Kashag Secretariat, Central Tibetan Administration. Presiding officials included Kalon Tripa [head of the Tibetan Administration] Professor Samdhong Rinpoche; Chairman of the Initiation Organizing Committee Ven. Nawang Norbu; and his joint secretary Mr. Thupten Jampa.

Kalachakra 2012 will take place in Bodhgaya, Bihar, India from December 31, 2011 to January 10, 2012. During the press conference, the Kalon Tripa launched the website of the 32nd Kalachakra Initiation by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, kalachakra2012.org

A letter expressing condolences for the death of Shri Dorjee Khandu, former chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh, was also distributed during the meeting. Khandu died in a tragic helicopter crash in April 2011, and it was at his request that His Holiness the Dalai Lama is conferring the Kalachakra Initiation.

Chairman of the Organizing Committee Lama Nawang Norbu introduced the meeting, beginning by thanking Kalon Tripa Rinpoche. He then spoke of the upcoming event: "The late chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh has met His Holiness the Dalai Lama and requested him to offer the 32nd Kalachakra initiation at the holiest place of Bodhgaya. His Holiness has blessed the chief minister's request and prayers."

He described the Kalachakra: "During this event, all followers of the four Buddhist sects and Bon religions will offer a mass prayer ceremony for peace for the whole universe and particularly for our world. "

Norbu also announced that the Committee "will organize a long-life prayer ceremony for His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This long-life prayer will be offered by all Buddhists around the world, including in India, Nepal, Tibet, Butan, and China."

Kalon Tripa then stated that "the confirmation of the 32nd Kalachakra Initiation is one of the most important deeds of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama."

Kalon Tripa described Kalachakra as one of the four main Buddhist Tantras, and praised the number of Kalachakra initiations His Holiness has performed. "Except Kunchen Tara Nathar, other Kalachakra masters did not offer more than three to four Kalachakra initiations. His Holiness has already conferred 30 initiations."

Kalachakra, a Sanskkrit word which means "Wheel of Time" or "Time Cycles," is a Buddhist belief system that serves to create harmony in life. The tradition deals with external cycles, such as those of the moon, stars, and planets, as well as internal cycles such as the breath and the energy in the body. Kalachakra initiations focuses on purifying the body and mind, thereby creating peace within the spirit.

The first eight days of the initiation will include preparation rituals such as special prayers, dances, and teachings. During the final days, the students are initiated into the Kalachakra. Kalachakra events conclude with monks creating a sand mandala, a design filled with Buddhist symbolism. After practitioners perform rituals and prayers the sand is scattered, signifying the release of its energy and symbolizing the impermanence of life.

Kalon Tripa expressed his opinion that "in the Tantric system, Kalachakra initiation is very important. On the one hand, in this degenerate era this world is facing so many difficulties and is in a state of emergency, but on the other hand,we are very fortunate to have the great teachings of a great teacher."

More details about Kalachakra ceremonies, the schedule of this year's event, accommodations, and registration can be found at kalachakra2012.org. Kalon Tripa stated, "The committee also is doing the best we can for all the devotees, followers, and the general public regarding accommodation and food. "

Pema Khandru, son of the late Shri Dorjee Khandu and chief patron of the Organizing Committee, said in a message about the event: "Kalachakra Initiation is one of the biggest religious ceremonies amongst the Buddhist communities worldwide...as usual, this Kalachakra initiation will also witness a large number of devotees, pilgrims, enthusiasts and visitors that will throng in at Bodhgaya from the world over."

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