A Kalachakra Stupa for World Peace is to be built at the Crystal Castle. This rare sacred monument will be only the seventh of its kind to be built in the world and the first in Australia.
“This stupa is very important for Byron Bay, the whole of Australia and for World peace.” Gen Lama Thupten Phuntsok, Gyuto Monk elder
What is a Stupa?
A stupa is a sacred monument built by the Tibetan Buddhists to represent the process of enlightenment. Symbolic of community strength and interdependence, Tibetans believe contributing to the building of a stupa is one of the most auspicious things one can do in this lifetime and once built, that great benefit can be gained from walking clockwise around it. The mere sight of a stupa is said to put one in touch with one’s own innate goodness inspiring compassion, kindness and thus ultimately good karma.
Kalachakra means ‘Wheel of Time’ and a Kalachakra stupa with its unusual spherical body symbolizes the energy cycle and the essential structure of the cosmos. It is known as the Stupa for World Peace.
The project officially begins on Friday 10th December when the Gyuto Monks of Tibet and local indigenous people will bless the site, remove obstacles and seek permission from the local spirits to proceed with the construction of this highly significant monument.
The World Peace Stupa Project
The dream of building a stupa began in 2003 when Crystal Castle owners, Naren & Sono King, were visiting the Buddhist sacred sites in Borobudur, Java.
“We were touched by the beauty and the energy of the monuments, and dreamed of one day building a stupa in the Crystal Castle grounds. Last February we travelled to Dharamsala in India for a private audience with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Whilst there, we were requested by a high lama Woser Rinpoche, using a Tibetan form of divination called the ‘mo’, to build the rare Kalachakra stupa. This is specifically for restoring balance to the Earth in times of war, conflict and environmental destruction. During our audience with the Dalai Lama, we were privileged to receive His Holiness’ blessings for the project.”
This project has also been blessed by other revered Buddhist spiritual leaders, the Karmapa, Gaden Tripa and His Holiness Sakya Trizin.
Gyuto Monks of Tibet to guide project
The stupa is expected to take a year or more to complete and will be created under the guidance of the Gyuto Monks of Tibet. As masters of the tantric arts, there is no-one more qualified to oversee and carry out the necessary rituals and ceremonies at each stage of the construction. The monks will create the intricate sculpture and artwork on the stupa.
The eight metre structure will be filled with many sacred objects, scriptures and relics. “Recently in Kathmandu a monastery gifted us with a complete collection of the Buddha’s teachings, 108 volumes of sacred scrolls, as well as the teachings of the first Dalai Lama.” explained Naren King. The local community will be invited to contribute a wide range of objects that symbolize the functioning, survival and prosperity of a good society.
“When we were in Dharamsala a monk came to our guesthouse one evening and very carefully handed us one of his monastery’s most sacred objects: the ceremonial yellow hat of his late teacher, Kirti Tsensup Rinpoche, who was one of the Dalai Lama’s teachers. It was a very moving moment. The generosity of spirit the Tibetans possess makes being in their presence a privilege. It seems like the stupa has begun a life of its own and we are along for the extraordinary ride.” said Sono King.
Forty brass prayer wheels, known as ‘Mani’ wheels are currently being handmade for the stupa by a family in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. For around 350 years this family have been creating these extraordinary prayer wheels. Their family name translates as ‘metal beater’. Each prayer wheel when finished will contain over 130,000 Om Mani Padme Hum mantras. Tibetans believe that when a prayer wheel is turned the prayers inside are released into the universe for the benefit of all.
Bringing the community together
Involvement of the community is an essential part of creating a stupa. All of the local community as well as visitors to this region are welcome to be a part of this powerful process.
“The stupa is as much a metaphysical structure as it is a physical construct that holds sacred objects. Getting the protocol right from the beginning is as important as getting the physical structure right, for it is to bring the community together for the common good. This approach is essential to align the wheel,” Gen Lama said.
During the Gyuto monks’ previous visits both locals and visitors, mostly the children, have already created six or seven hundred Buddha statues made from clay to be sealed inside the stupa. In the coming months, all of the local community as well as visitors to the region are invited to be a part of this powerful process, a rare and exciting opportunity for all.
Invitation to something special
Everyone is welcome at the Crystal Castle on Friday 10th December 2010 11am for an indigenous ceremony and consecration of the Kalachakra stupa site by the Gyuto Monks of Tibet. There will be free entry for everyone coming to the ceremony.
The recent Full Moon in Taurus which peaked at 4:27 am AEDT on Monday the 22nd of November was aligned with the Pleiades, a constellation associated in New Age folklore with the evolution of human consciousness into a fifth dimensional realm of love and light. It is interesting to note in this connection that both the Mayan and Egyptian pyramids are specifically oriented toward this star grouping.
The Taurus Full Moon therefore presented a wonderful opportunity to become aware of any limiting beliefs and patterns that keep us from living our full potential as spiritual beings who have temporarily assumed human form for the purpose of evolving in consciousness toward the light.
Here on Earth, light casts a shadow, both literally and metaphorically. In astrology, Scorpio is the sign most intimately involved with bringing light to the shadow areas of our psyches where we have become entrapped in the darkness of fear and ignorance. So it seems especially noteworthy that the Pleiades Full Moon alignment occurred this year on the very same day that the Sun finished its yearly transit of the sign. [At 9:15 pm on Mon 22 Nov to be exact.]
Hopefully, we have all learnt from Scorpio’s reign, that “Love brings up anything unlike itself [only] for the purpose of healing” [Sondra Ray]; that “What is to give light must endure burning” [Victor Frankel]; and that “We do not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious” [Carl Jung].
Perhaps the greatest gift of Scorpio though is to fully realize that each end in life is not only an end, but simultaneously a beginning. A beginning, certainly of an unknown future, but perhaps too, of a new and exciting chapter that will offer its greatest bounty when lived in a spirit of adventure and the courage to stay open to the mystery.
Michelle has over 16 years experience giving Readings professionally, appearing twice on Australian National Television, giving Live Readings on Air. Drawing upon a lifetime study and practice of the Spiritual and Metaphysical Arts, along with a natural psychic ability, Michelle is able to give clear, transformative and practical readings using the Tarot and pure clairvoyant impressions of your "field". Michelle is also a passionate teacher of the Tarot, currently writing her own book upon the subject.
The origins of the Universe: The First 3 cards of The Tarot
The first 3 cards of the Tarot provide an amazingly powerful and concise story of the genesis of the created universe as we know it! The very first card of the Tarot is The Fool, numbered “0”. The old fashioned word for “0” is “cipher” which also means “mystery” or “puzzle”. Mystics and mathematicians agree that zero is not really a number, but more an idea of complete and utter stillness and silence. Zero is neither a plus nor a minus, neither yang nor yin, but a portal to both and to all things, a state of pure potentiality, of emptied-ness and no-thingness--innocent, open and poised. Sounds like Source Energy--the indestructible essence of all things, including you and me--doesn’t it? A perfect entry point to the profundity of Creation and the Tarot!
Like the mysterious, incomprehensible state preceding the Big Bang, this “0” which is The Fool, gives birth to the unavoidable duality inherent in our world of existence and form: Bang! Now we have the Male Yang of The Magician (1) and the Feminine Yin of The High Priestess (2)—the two fundamental principles out of which Source (0) fashions the stuff of the entire Universe!
These two cards indicate our connection to our Spiritual Father (The Magician) and our Spiritual Mother (The High Priestess). Both Principles have access to the “magic” of manifestation, but by different means. The Magician works through dynamic, active, Yang rationality and order. The High Priestess operates through passive, “allowing” feminine Yin energy, comfortable with the forces of chaos, the psyche and irrationality. BOTH ways are essential to a fulfilling life here! On a basic level, when either The Magician or The High Priestess appear, they often indicate which kind of approach is needed or at play at this time: action vs. inaction, activity vs. stillness, intervention vs. allowing, acquiring vs. letting go, left-side of the brain vs. right-side of the brain, rationality vs. feeling.
Michelle is available for readings on Mondays, please book ahead to avoid disappointment.
Q. Name, nickname and tell us briefly about yourself?
My name is Karen and I moved to the Byron Shire from Adelaide in 2003. My first visit to the area was in Christmas 2002 for a holiday. My family and I loved it so much we returned to Adelaide, resigned our jobs, sold our house and here we are!
Q. What do you love about working here and how long have you been on the Castle team?
I have been a part of The Crystal Castle team for 7 years and find everyone here to be very supportive and respectful of each other both professionally and personally. I love to wander the gardens and spring time is my favourite season to be doing so.
Q. What is your favourite dish from the Lotus Cafe?
I love the Rice and Dahl in winter and the Chicken and Pumpkin Salad in summer.
Q. Do you have a favourite statue and why?
Yes, I consider myself to be a very compassionate person so Avalokiteshvara would have to be my favourite.
Q. If you could buy anything from the Castle, what would you buy?
I am often drawn to “Fairy Magic” it’s such an amazing geode.
Q. What's your favourite crystal and why?
That would have to be Rose Quartz – for love.
Q. When did you get your first crystal and what was it?
My first crystal was a beautiful clear quartz generator that was given to me in 2003 by Naren, the owner of the Crystal Castle because he admired my inner strength and courage.
The Spirit of Clear Quartz gives a feeling of unlimited possibilities and the ability to realise your potential to manifest with clarity.
Clear Quartz illuminates the path to a more spiritual state of being, opening up your potential psychic abilities facilitating a glimpse into other worlds.
Weddings are absolutely beautiful and sacred at the Crystal Castle and this is echoed by the sentiments shared by all who have got married at this special place…
“We wanted a private and intimate ceremony and the Buddha gardens allowed for that. Our son is two now, and he often looks at photos or the DVD of the day and says "Buddha Buddha". Even being so young I am sure he will remember that element, if nothing else. It was a great interaction with nature for everyone. After the ceremony the guests were able to walk through the gardens and see some of the wonderful statues.” Katy and Daniel
“Our wedding was the most amazing day! And we owe a lot of that specialness to the Crystal Castle. Having our ceremony in front of the Buddha and photos in the garden afterwards gave our wedding a difference to the norms of traditional weddings. The statues, the plants and the sun going down over the valley made for great wedding photos. The experience was quite simply "truly amazing". Melissa and Gabor
“We had a truly wonderful experience having our wedding ceremony at the Crystal Castle. We had been there for the first time two years earlier, and had decided then and there that when we got married. We have both lived in India for many years, studying Indian and Hindu Spirituality, so the ambience and atmosphere at the Crystal Castle was exactly what we needed to feel at home.” Prana and Hamsa
The Amphitheatre area faces Australia’s largest hand-carved Buddha that is resting in a pond surrounded by a lotus mosaic infinity wall. All around are monolithic crystals and lush gardens with other beautiful places for ceremonies, such as in front of a huge statue of Ganesh or the Goddess Lakshmi, and at the Sacred Labyrinth. There are many unique and beautiful spaces at the Crystal Castle perfect for your wedding or special function, and a gorgeous canopy can be erected over the Amphitheatre area for wet weather.