17 May 2017: The 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje Arrives in London

The 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, arrived in central London this afternoon on his first ever visit to the United Kingdom. A long line of devotees offering katas greeted him on his arrival at his hotel. He was then officially welcomed at a special reception in the form of a traditional English afternoon tea.  

18th May 2017: British Museum

Today the Karmapa was invited on a personal tour of the British Museum. Guided by Richard Blurton, curator of the South Asian collection, the Karmapa first saw artwork from the Buddhist collection as well as a rare album with photos of old Tibet. He also visited the famous Rosetta Stone, the Elgin Marbles, and exhibits illustrating the beginnings of archaeology and the deciphering of ancient scripts, all of them speaking to his interests as a scholar …

19th May 2017: British Library

  Fifty years after the Sixteenth Karmapa’s initial visit to the Library, then housed in the British Museum, the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, travelled this morning to the new British Library, an impressive structure of red brick in a modern style. Here the Karmapa visited the Strong Room, two stories underground where the famous Dunhuang manuscripts are stored and as well as important Tibetan texts. Afterward Kristian Jensen, Head of Collections, guided the Karmapa …

20th May 2017: Peace Pagoda blessing & first UK Teachings

On his way to teach for the first time in England at the Battersea Evolution, the Karmapa stopped to bless the nearby Japanese Peace Pagoda, located on the River Thames. The mayor of Wandsworth, Clir Jim Madden and his wife were present in their impressive regalia of golden mayoral collars alongside the head monk of the Pagoda, Reverend Gyoro Nagase, and a Japanese nun, both of whom belong to the Nipponzan Myohoji tradition of Japanese …

21st May 2017: Further Teachings at Battersea Evolution

Today’s morning teachings began with the fourth verse from the Eight Verses for Training the Mind: Whenever I see beings of ill character Weighed down by harsh misdeeds and suffering, As if I had discovered a treasury of precious jewels, May I cherish them as something difficult to find. The practice taught by this verse, the Karmapa commented, entails relating to three types of people: those with a negative or horrible character, those weighed down …

22 May: Kagyu Samye Dzong Tibetan Buddhist Centre, London, England

As the Karmapa’s car drew to a halt in the street outside Kagyu Samye Dzong Tibetan Buddhist Centre, the combined Samye Ling and Samye Dzong Sangha greeted him in traditional Tibetan style. Long horns resounded, accompanied by gyalings, drums and cymbals. A monk held the great golden umbrella, which signifies kingship, above the Karmapa’s head as he strode up the steps into the centre. His Holiness was preceded by Choje Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche, head …

22 May 2017: Tibetan Peace garden, Imperial War Museum, London

Today, on a sunny, soft afternoon in London, Tibetans gathered to receive the Gyalwang Karmapa at the Tibetan Peace Garden. Located on the grounds of the Imperial War Museum, it is a reminder of their commitment to peace and the importance of non-violence. After a warm welcome from the Tibet Foundation, the Karmapa was asked to bless the bronze Kalachakra Mandala, which is placed at the center of the circular garden. Small children in traditional …

23 May 2017: Tibet Society Event at The Royal Asiatic Society, London

Today the Gyalwang Karmapa came to the famous Royal Asiatic Society to speak about the environment with long-term, core members of the Tibet Society, the world’s first ever Tibetan support group. The Chair, Fredrick Hyde-Chambers OBE, delineated the history of UK and Tibetan relations and the Society’s current activities to support the Tibetan cause. President of the Society, Rt Hon Norman Baker, welcomed the Karmapa with a quote from his book, The Heart is Noble: …

23 May 2017: UK Launch of ‘Interconnected: Embracing Life in our Global Society’ at Watkins Books, London

At the conclusion of another very busy day in London, the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, arrived in the late afternoon at Watkins Books to attend the UK launch of his most recent book, Interconnected: Embracing Life in our Global Society. The book is the second in a series based on exchanges between the Karmapa and young people and deals with topics, such as the way electronic connectivity is transforming the way we relate, loneliness, …

24 May 2017: Science & Welfare Seminar at St Catharine’s and King’s College, Cambridge, England

Today His Holiness the Gyalwang Karmapa left London and travelled north to Cambridge, a city whose name has become almost synonymous with its world-famous university. The Karmapa’s morning seminar was hosted by the International Buddhist Confederation’s Secretary for Environment and Conservation, Dr Barbara Maas. The day began with an academic seminar on animal sentience and animal welfare science, and their significance for our relationship with and treatment of animals. Veterinarians turned animal welfare scientists, Dr …

24th May 2017

Following a formal lunch in Kings College, Cambridge, and a tour of its gothic church, the Karmapa walked to Great St. Mary’s church and climbed its tower for a panoramic view of the university town. Afterward, he went to Magdelene College and met with Lord Williams, the previous Archbishop of Canterbury, and a group of scientists, policy makers, and spiritual leaders. They met to discuss the future of the environment and how religious traditions can …

25 May 2017: Visit to BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir, London

On the morning of May 25, the Karmapa travelled to northwest London to visit BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir, the largest Hindu temple in Europe. He was met by Pujya Yogvivekdas Swami and offered the traditional greeting of a garland of flowers, a tika (the red mark of blessing) and a blessed cord. The Karmapa was then guided around the temple to see an exhibition on understanding Hinduism and participated in prayers with the swami and other …

26 May: Reception with HRH the Prince of Wales; Tour of English Countryside

At 11 am on Friday 26th May 2017, His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje was received by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales at his country home of Highgrove (pictured). Their conversation covered issues of mutual concern, such as global climate change. His Holiness gifted His Royal Highness a copy of his new book ‘Interconnected: Embracing Life in Our Global Society’. The meeting was followed by a tour of the grounds & gardens. Following the …

27th May 2107: Aldershot, Hampshire, England

Early on this day of the Karmapa’s visit to the Nepali community in Aldershot, the double arch of a luminous rainbow filled the sky. It recalled his first visit to the US when rainbows followed him everywhere on the East Coast. The Karmapa was invited by the Buddhist Community Centre UK to this beautiful area of England, famous for its military garrisons and home to a sizeable population of Gurkha soldiers who have served in …