Purelands Retreat Centre
Set among the rolling hills of the Esk Valley and a short walk from the main Samye Ling centre, Purelands is a purpose-built retreat centre that provides the ideal conditions for meditation and retreat in a tranquil environment. Purelands offers a range of 8-day retreats throughout the year. These retreats offer people the perfect opportunity to practice away from the distractions and demands of daily life...
The Tibetan Tea Room/Cafe
The warm, inviting atmosphere of the Tibetan Tea Rooms with its traditional decor provides a comfortable place to relax. It is open daily from 9am to 5pm and also from 8pm until 10pm on the weekends serving a wide range of beverages and snacks.
Samye Ling Shop
The Shop has an extensive range of books, texts and ritual objects. The statues are particularly fine and are directly imported from shops and workshops in Nepal. Also available are gifts and crafts sold on behalf of Rokpa charities. The shop is open daily from 9am to 5pm, closing for lunch between 12.30 and 1.30pm. For more information visit www.samyelingshop.com Tel: 013873 73337 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Naga House
This stone structure in the River Esk is embedded with semi-precious stones and was built as an offering to the nagas or water spirits who dwell at the junction between the two rivers. Making offerings to nagas is a way of bringing environmental forces into balance. The point where the two rivers meet is directly opposite the doors of the temple and is very powerful in terms of geomancy. The Naga House also serves a function in balancing the powerful energies emanating from this point.
At the back of the temple is a stone building that houses a special protector shrine. Prayers are recited there continuously to ward off and transform obstacles to the practice of the Buddhist teachings. Similar protector shrines are found in Tibet alongside great temples. Visitors are requested not to approach this building or knock on the door as there is a nun there who is in permanent retreat.
The magnificent Tibetan Temple is the centrepiece of spiritual life at Samye Ling. Completed in 1988 after ten years of devoted labour by volunteers under the direction of Dr. Akong Tulku Rinpoche and master artist, Sherab Palden Beru, the temple hosts a daily programme of meditation and prayers. You are welcome to visit the temple throughout day, although you are requested to come and go quietly during prayer sessions. The only times the temple is closed to the public are during daily meditations, which run 8am - 9am and 5pm - 6pm. You are welcome to join these sessions, but you are asked to be settled before meditation starts and to remain until the end. Otherwise, the temple is open daily from 6am until 10pm.
In 2001 the first extension wing of the temple was completed. The downstairs level houses the dining room, kitchen and a workshop space for weekend courses, while the upstairs level is the monk's quarters, Abbot's office and interview room. We are in the process of fundraising for the completion stage of Samye Project, which will be another extension to the temple opposite Phase 2. This wing will house the nuns' quarters upstairs and a library and college complex downstairs.
Inside the old Abbot's office in Johnstone House is a shrine devoted to the Nyung-nyes, a special fasting practice. The main feature of the shrine is a 1000 armed Chenrezig statue, beautifully sculpted by Lama Thubten, a master craftsman from Tibet. On the right of the Chenrezig statue is a statue of Guru Rinpoche and on its left is a statue of His Holiness The 16th Karmapa
There is a long tradition of offering lights, both in remembrance of loved ones and as a gesture of lighting the flame of wisdom in a world that is often so dark and conflicted. The Butterlamp House, comes alive every day at about 4pm when lamps are lit for world peace. On days of special significance, all 1008 lamps are lit as a prayerful gesture of hope, and the flickering glow illuminates that whole area of Samye Ling. People are invited to join in by sponsoring lamps (25 pence each) and helping to light them. Contact reception for more details.
The Eight Stupas
These stupas line both sides of the entrance to Samye Ling next to the Butterlamp House. When the Buddha died and passed into parinirvana (final liberation), his disciples cremated his body and interred his ashes in eight stupas, which were erected in different auspicious locations. Each stupa represent an important event in the life of the Buddha.
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