Your multi-coloured umbrella

I was overwhelmed with all the instructions I had to follow in order to perform a good ceremony. After all I was a guest of the King of Tibetans, His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, XIV Dalai Lama. And I couldn´t just miss a detail since I wanted to show all the Geshes (masters) that I was not such a lousy student after all.

But being a typical westerner, from the city and with no Buddhist background the fact of doing a ritual that took me almost 6 hours to complete was beyond my strength.

“Well, after all they know I am not a monk and I am just here as a guest” I kept repeating to myself trying not to feel so bad about my bad memory.

I had a couple days to prepare the whole Sadhana. This ceremony was the permit and protection for practicing certain kind of Tibetan Tantra. But the truth was I was much more nervous about the “form” than the “content” of the ritual and all those things were totally “foreign” to me. But as a good westerner I wanted to cause a “good impression”.

But despite my efforts, being able to remember the order of the rituals, the mantras (Sanskrit and Tibetan are not among my spoken languages definitely) and hand positions (Mudras) etc., was a challenge outside my skills. Especially with little time to prepare all that.

One of the Masters saw I was very stressed about it, approached me and laughing as usual he asked me if I was nervous about performing the ceremony in front of all the monastery. “Nahhh, who would be nervous for such an unimportant event” I thought. Playing dumb in front of His Holiness and like 100 students was of course such a casual event that, I was of course, supposed to be calmed and relaxed. “What kind of question was that” I thought to myself.

The instructor was very amused by my worrying and asked me to join him in a walk through the garden of the monastery.

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