It is a journey every Buddhist dreams of making once in their lifetime.
In the ethereal valley of Spiti, in the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India, lies the Ki Gompa monastery. It played host to a special event recently -- the Kalachakra ceremony conducted by His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
The origin of the Kalachakra lies in mystery. The Kalachakra is one of the bestknown deities of the Anutara Yoga Tantra, one of the esoteric, ritualistic paths of tantric Buddhism. The rituals and meditation performed during the Kalachakra with the ultimate aim of attaining Nirvana is known as the Kalachakra Prayers.
Most Tibetans try to receive the empowerment of the Kalachakra at least once during their lifetime. There is a popular belief that attending this ceremony ensures rebirth in the mythical land of Shambala. On an academic level this Tantra is one of the richest sources for the study of the Buddhist systems of astrology, cosmology, subtle energy systems and mind-body relationships.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama is the ultimate authority in the teaching of the Kalachakra prayers. He has given more than 20 Kalachakra initiations to the public, the first of which took place in Lhasa, Tibet in 1954.
For Buddhists from all over the world who sat spellbound listening to every word the Dalai Lama said, this year's Kalachakra had yet another distinction. It had a personal blessing from the Dalai Lama and his sage advice on how spirituality could be an asset in the new millennium.
rediff.com presents a rare glimpse into this lifetime experience. Listen to His Holiness the Dalai Lama's special message for humanity.
Produced by SoundPicture Communications