Lama Ole, what was the reason you decided to build a Kalachakra stupa especially at Karma Berchen Ling?
Lama Ole Nydahl: During Antiquity, due to the Greek conies and their philosophers, the Mediterranean ocean led the western world in free thinking, human rights and democracy.
Kalachakra–stupas have been used for the last thousand years in Buddhist Asia to defend such timeless values against any retrograde forces of suppression which history may bring up and they work everywhere.
Our beloved Lama Lopon Tsechu Rinpoche inaugurated one such 13-meter high stupa near Malaga in 1994, looking south. We are searching for fitting land in southern Italy right now, and following Rinpoche’s wishes, this stupa will face east.
In which ways will the Kalachakra stupa of KBL bring benefit to the world?
Lama Ole Nydahl: By focusing being’s awareness of what is ultimately good and benefits their development. Stupas strongly influence mind both on a conscious level and by reminding us of our inherent Buddha nature.
Which thoughts and feelings have you shared with Hannah about this stupa?
Lama Ole Nydahl: Travelling around the world since high school, and studying with the highest Lamas in the Himalayas from 1968-72 Hannah and I knew our planet well.
Being humanists, we were strongly aware of other cultures and the constant challenges to our western democratic and humanistic values. We knew the positive influence of stupas, that they would protect our future and for 20 years we hoped to build such an edifice in Berchen Ling.
A beautiful mountain ridge with a view of Delphi from the mountain behind and near Korinthos, the place unites the richness of Athens and power o Sparta in a most auspicious setting.
Being guided by the deep knowledge of Lama Chogdrub Dorje and his practical experiences from year-long Kalachakra retreats, all perfect conditions meet for the ultimate benefit of those with the fitting Karma.
What does this stupa mean for your work as a Lama?
Lama Ole Nydahl: Another jewel in the crown of our Diamond Way Karma Kagyu
achievements and the strengthening of the timeless values we all stand for.
Students and friends from around the world are contributing here, several giving months or years of their young lives and such altruism makes the building of a stupa a great event. Representing Buddha’s mind through his five wisdoms and blessing their five elements, surely there shall be great benefit.
What would make you happy concerning the use of the place (right after the stupa is built as well as in the long run) by your students?
Lama Ole Nydahl: Well, we will probably never have a highway up here and potential visitors deserving the stupa’s blessing may only read a few lines about it somewhere or have a flash of freedom and surplus when visiting the area.
However, being expressions of a pure mental state, the influence of stupas will always extend the finest of realization. It is a treasure for all times and all who helped it come about, practically as well as through their wishes, share in a fine, unselfish act.
Lama Ole Nydahl,
Tonalli, Mexico, 8 May 2010 (part of an interview in the Special Edition “Kalachakra Stupa in Karma Berchen Ling”)