Envisioned as a sacred place for the study and preservation of Buddhist teachings in accordance with the Gaden Ear-Whispered lineage, Gaden Khachoe Shing officially opened its doors to spiritual aspirants in 2007. Founded by Venerable Gameng Kuten (Choijin) Lama, this Tibetan Buddhist monastery is located on 128 acres of lush land in Bloomington, Indiana.
Encircled by a wide stream, Gaden Khachoe Shing is only 15 minutes away from downtown Bloomington. This combination of seclusion and proximity provides the ideal environment for religious study by offering the benefits of isolation from worldly affairs as well as easy access to all necessary amenities of daily life.
The name “Gaden Khachoe Shing” was given by the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden and has a deep spiritual meaning. “Gaden” is the name of the Pure Land of the future Buddha, Maitreya who has a special connection with the Gelug lineage. “Khachoe” is the name of the Pure Land of the female Tantric Buddha Vajrayogini, whose powerful practice promises Enlightenment in just one lifetime. “Shing” in Tibetan means the Pure Lands where one can attain Enlightenment swiftly if one takes a rebirth there.
The buildings of Gaden Khachoe Shing feature elements of ancient Tibetan architecture which symbolise the wisdom teachings of the Buddha. It is intended that the monastery, once completed, will replicate in a modern way the components of traditional Buddhist monasteries. Thus far, Gaden Khachoe Shing includes:
- The Main Prayer Hall: This assembly hall or gompa houses the main altar and is the primary place of worship where members of the spiritual community convene to meditate and participate in teachings, initiations and special ceremonies. The prayer hall of Gaden Khachoe Shing also features a traditional throne for the Dorje Shugden oracle. The Venerable Gameng Kuten is one such qualified oracle of Dorje Shugden who was trained by H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche.
- The Protector Temple: The Protector Chapel in Gaden Khachoe Shing is dedicated to the special Protector of Lama Tsongkhapa’s teachings, Dorje Shugden. As is traditional for Gelugpa monasteries, the Protector Chapel is housed in a separate room from the main prayer hall.
- Vajrayogini Temple: The Tantric temple in Gaden Khachoe Shing is devoted to the female Tantric Buddha Vajrayogini, who is particularly important in these degenerate times.
Upcoming plans for Gaden Khachoe Shing include the construction of a kitchen, dining hall, separate residential quarters for ordained and lay teachers and students, and a debate courtyard.
Gaden Khachoe Shing offers a regular schedule of Tibetan Buddhist pujas including a Tara puja once a month, Tsok offerings every fortnight, and the monthly Protector kangso. A selection of Buddhist retreats, meditation courses and instructions in Buddhist education at multiple levels is also available.
The inauguration of Gaden Khachoe Shing’s new temple on 3-5 October 2014 was graced by many renowned masters of the Gelug lineage who flew in from all over the globe. The guest of honour was His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Chocktrul Rinpoche. Other eminent guests included His Eminence Gangchen Rinpoche, Geshe Konchok Gyaltsen and Geshe Jangchup Gyaltsen from Italy and His Eminence Kyabje Gonsar Rinpoche and Venerable Rabten Rinpoche from Switzerland. Yet others who joined in the grand celebrations included the Abbot of Serpom Monastery, His Eminence Kyabje Yongyal Rinpoche, His Eminence Zasep Rinpoche, Venerable Achok Rinpoche, Venerable Dechen Tulku and Venerable Sherab Rinpoche.
Venerable Gameng Kuten (Choijin) Lama
Venerable Gameng Kuten (Choijin) Lama joined Gaden Shartse Monastic College at the age of 13 and studied under the unsurpassed Kyabje Zong Dorje Chang and other erudite masters including Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang and Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche. After some 20 years tutelage from these great teachers, he received many lineage teachings and initiations. He also completed many retreats. In 1993, he was awarded the Geshe degree, one of the highest degrees in Buddhist studies.
Venerable Gameng Kuten Lama travelled all over the world and gave teachings in more than 33 different countries. In 1997, he moved to Bloomington, Indiana and served as resident teacher for Dagom Gaden Tensung Ling Monastery in Bloomington as well as spiritual director for Gaden Samdrup Ling Monastery in Cincinnati, Ohio. In addition to his duties at these monasteries, he continues to travel to Buddhist monasteries and Dharma centres in Mongolia, Europe, Canada and other countries around the world, tirelessly giving teachings and participating in religious events.
More Images from Gaden Khachoe Shing’s Inauguration
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