Theckchen Choeling Temple
The new cathedral is graced by the permanent presence of the three principal images of Shakyamuni Buddha, Padma Sambhava and Avalokitesvara. Besides this, It also houses one hundred volumes of Kangyur, 225 volumes of Tengyur, and stupas of gilded bronze and bell metal.
These will remain constantly in the midst of sentient being so that they might accumulate merit while they are not able to attain the highest state of enlightenment. The holy images and spiritual texts, which were consecrated and blessed with “life” through the accomplishment of the mandala of the highest yoga tantra, and the rites of the Consecration of the “Ocean of Virtues”, are the means to attain the right path of enlightenment through seeing, hearing and remembering.
Construction of the Temple
This cathedral was completed within a record period of nine months, employing about thirty Tibetan and Indian craftsmen, and about seventy to eighty Tibetan laborers. Avoiding grand designs, the architectural structures of the cathedral was patterned on a basis of earthly simplicity. The total cost of constructing the cathedral was about two lakh Indian rupees.
Seven Tibetan artisans spent a total period of one year and eight month in completing the three principal images housed in the cathedral. Gold, Silver, copper, mercury, diamond, pearl, turquoise, coral and other precious metals and stones were used in embellishing the images. All in all, the total cost of building the cost of the labor and other miscellaneous expenses was over three lakh Indian rupees.
The total expenditure for the construction of the cathedral and its images exceeded five lakh Indian rupees. Donation and contribution in cash and kind, received expressly for the purpose of construction of the cathedral and the images, were two lakh thirteen thousand and nine hundred Indian rupees. The remaining cost of two lakh eighty-six thousand and one hundred Indian rupees was made up from the amount offered by the Tibetan people to collect merit for the dead ones, and to collect merit for themselves.
Thus, the construction of this cathedral and its images implicates the congregation of the possible heaps of skilful merits under one roof. It also implies the convergence of all acts of virtues and its accompanying generating forces performed by oneself and others in the three divisions of time, in one central place. By virtues of these qualifying factors, we direct my sincere prayers of thanks to those faithful ones, “dead or living”, who came forward with supervision workers, craftsmen and volunteers who contributed their might in words, thoughts and deeds.
To all these beings who are fortunate in seeing, hearing, remembering or coming into sense contact with the cathedral and its images, may they be absorbed in the radiance of Avalokitesvara’s benign blessings through all their periods of samsaric existence. May all of them make rapid progress in the path of the perfect enlightenment and the true stage of the path of liberation, and soon achieve the non-dual status of Vajra Dhara with its accompanying attributes of the ten powers and five divine wisdom. Pray that the people of Tibet are soon freed from the aggression and slavery of barbaric Chinese Communist rule, and may they, like other human beings, be able to breathe the free air of freedom. May the world be free of pestilence, disease, famine, war and conflicts, and may constructive tranquility flourish in every quarter, securing peace, abundance, amity, goodwill and happiness among all mankind. Let these prayers of mine which I offer with all intensity have their desired results.