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Tibetans Begin Month Long Prayer

Tibetans Begin Month Long Prayer
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Tibetans in exile circulated a couple of prayer texts around July 27, 2013 through a popular Chinese mobile text and voice messaging service called ‘WeChat’ which said that the Dalai Lama had asked Tibetans to recite prayers during his retreat in Ladakh, North India for a period of three weeks. This created confusion among Tibetans after some people disputed it as being a false message. In the meantime, many Tibetans inside Tibet had started distributing copies of the prayer texts in different communities, and one monastery had started making 10,000 butter-lamp offerings as a part of the prayer. A week after the message was circulated and some monasteries had begun doing the prayers, the Religious Department of Tibetan administration in exile officially announced that the message circulated previously was in fact from the Dalai Lama. On July 25, the Dalai Lama told Sharpa Choje, the next Throne Holder of the Gelugpa Sect of Tibetan Buddhist school, in Ganden Monastery that the monks in Sera, Drepung, and Ganden should do daily recitations of certain prayers while he is in retreat in the Himalayas. “The Dalai Lama has told me that starting from August 1, all the monks of three great monasteries namely Sera, Drepung, and Gaden should daily recite the Praise of Avalokitesvara, followed by one thousand Mantra of Avalokitesvara and twice Heart Sutra preferably for a period of a month,” said Sharpa Choje to Tibet in Review. Choje further added that the Dalai Lama also asked him to pass on the message to the Tibetans living in the Tibetan settlements.