(TibetanReview.net, May26’22) – Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, has on May 25 reiterated his confidence, wishes, and prayers to live to be more than a hundred years old in order to be able to fulfil his devotees’ wishes. The occasion was the offering to him of a long-life ritual offering by the collective of the Sakya tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.
“Thank you for this long life offering. If I don’t live long, there’s a chance the Tibetan people’s wishes and aspirations will not be fulfilled. For this reason I pray that I will live to be more than a hundred and I ask you too to make the same prayer,” he has said.
The ceremony was led by hierarchs of both the Sakya palaces – the Dolma Phodrang and Phuntsok Phodrang – and was headed by Sakya Dagtri Rinpoché.
The main ceremonial long life offering, which was based on the Wish-fulfilling Wheel of White Tara, began with the recitation of the text of the long-life prayer, followed by the presentation of statues of deities of longevity, White Tara, Amitayus and Ushnishavijaya.
Sakya Dagtri Rinpoché then offered to His Holiness a bowl heaped with long-life pills, from which the latter took one, and repeated the process with a spoonful of long-life nectar.
The incumbent Sakya Throne-holder, the Sakya Triazin Gyana Vajra Rinpoché, recited verses requesting His Holiness to live long while offering him a large, golden mandala. The previous Throne-holder, Ratna Vajra Rinpoché, continued to make prayers for His Holiness’s longevity as he presented him with a statue of White Tara, a volume of scripture, a reliquary object, a vase of the nectar of long life and a vajra and bell, which His Holiness rang. His Holiness briefly put on a Sakya hat.
Avikrita Vajra Rinpoché offered a mandala and representations of the enlightened body, speech and mind in thanks to His Holiness for accepting the long-life offering.
The ceremony continued with further offerings presented by other Sakya hierarchs and a procession of members of the Sakya community, monastics and laypeople.