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This classic Tibetan Buddhist documentary chronicles the life of the 16th Gyalwa Karmpa. The Karmpa is the oldest lineage of “tulkus” or reincarnated Lamas. His name means the one who manifests enlightened activity. He is regarded as an emanation of Chenrezig, the Buddha of compassion.

This documentary includes imminent Kagyu practitioners like Tai Situ Rinpoche, the Sharmpa, Jamgong Kontrul, Trungpa Rinpoche, and Goshir Gyaltsap Rinpoche. They follow the Karmapa to the United States, where the Native American Hope Nation greeted him as they believe he was part of a fullfilment of a very old prophecy.

The 16th Karmapa eventualy died in Chicago, in 1981 due to stomach cancer. His physician mentioned that he found it amazing that while he was dying, the Karmpa was more concern about the welfare of the staff and those around him. It’s well also well documented that the Karmpa refused to take pain medications. Stomach cancer is a very painful death and most people experience intense agony. HH Karmpa replied that it’s not that he doesn’t feel the pain, he just doesn’t identify it.

The Karmpa went into clear light meditation or meditation on the ultimate nature of mind at death. The physician found it remarkable that days after his death, the Karmapa’s heart was still warm. He couldn’t logically explain how this could happen.

 

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