Jangchub Choeling Monastery

JCM Monastery
 Fig 1. Jangchub Choeling Monastery, a monastic community under the guidance of Lama Dupsing Rinpoche, named and officially recognized by the Dalai Lama
sr jcmMonks
Fig 2. Shangpa Rinpoche is deeply beloved by the monks who regard him as their own parent

In 1963, His Holiness the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa asked Lama Dupsing Rinpoche to leave Kathmandu for Pokhara in order to meet the spiritual needs of the Tibetan and Nepalese population there. At first, a small monastery was established for performing Buddhist services and ceremonies. Over time, as the number of devotees grew, parents began to ask Lama Dupsing Rinpoche to ordain their sons as monks. Before long, there were 35 monks at the monastery.

In 1967, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama named the monastery "Jangchub Choeling Monastery" and officially recognised the monastic community under the guidance of Lama Dupsing Rinpoche. Three years later, Lama Dupsing Rinpoche, aware of the need for expansion, moved the monastery to its present location. He planned to erect a larger building and improve the facilities. Sadly, he passed away in 1976 without being able to fulfil his dreams and left the newly inaugurated monastery without a leader or a certain future.

In 1978, His Holiness the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa appointed Shangpa Rinpoche, then 23 years old, as Chief Abbot of the monastery. Over the last 20 years, Shangpa Rinpoche has tirelessly dedicated himself to supporting the livelihood, education of Sangha community as well as upgrading and expanding the premises and facilities of the monastery.

 Fig 3. Shrine Hall of Jangchub Choeling Monastery

The architecture of the shrine hall follows the traditional Tibetan design, although it is entirely constructed with modern building materials. Inside the main hall there is a 7-foot copper and gold plated statue of Buddha.

On the far back wall, on either side of the Buddha sits 1000 small Buddha figures representing the 1000 Buddhas believed to exist in this 'Fortunate Era'. The wall paintings, painted by the Tibetan artist Mr. Dhawa, portray the life of Buddha from birth to Nirvana, or Great Enlightenment. On the walls to the right and left of the entranceway, are images of the six Ornaments and the two Supreme Ones who beautified Buddha's teachings and made them accessible to all through their commentaries. On the walls facing the Buddha figures lies the portraits of the 16 Arhats who upheld Buddha's teachings after he passed away.

The second floor of the shrine hall is reserved as the residence and meeting place of the Chief Abbot Shangpa Rinpoche. The third story is home to a chapel for the Lineage Masters. Clay figures and images of the Lineage Masters of the Kagyudpa Traditions decorate the inside of the chapel. The chapel also holds 102 volumes of the Kangyur (Buddha's word) and 215 volumes of the Tengyur (commentary by the Indian Buddhist Masters).