Stupas are said to promote harmony, prosperity, longevity, good health, and peace. They bring blessings to the environment in which they are built, to those who build them, and to those who visit and venerate them. In this way, stupas ensure that the living quality of the Buddhist teachings will always be available.
This stupa will be the central axis in a garden which will offer sites to sit and meditate, thousands of memorial stupas, gardens grown as offerings to the Buddha, places to perform prostrations, ponds with places for peaceful travelers to rest and reflect. Read more about stupas around the world
- Buddha Statue for Alcove of Stupa (6/13/2018) - Stupa Update: June 13, 2018 By Gelongma Losang Drimay The Buddha statue that will go in the alcove of our stupa arrived mid-May, 2018. Project Manager, Denice Macy tells the story. Tell us about the design process: “In March 2017, Lama Zopa Rinpoche took me into his rooms at Kopan [Monastery] and showed me a lot of his statues and pointed out the facial features of statues that best represented the Buddha. He said, ‘See this face? This is how a good artist shows the Buddha’s face. The Buddha’s face is brilliant and beautiful, naturally, and good artists can show that.’ Rinpoche wanted it to be life-size; he was emphatic about that. “Rinpoche was completely working with the makers to design our statue to be similar to the one in Bodhgaya, at the Mahabodhi stupa. I visited the statue maker in Kathmandu right at the Boudhanath stupa. Rinpoche uses that statue [...]
- Sculpture Added to Stupa (5/18/2017) - We are so glad to have our amazing artist Good Virtue back at LMB! He is creating beautiful molds to go on the top Kadampa Stupa right now. During the raining season, we were working with a landscape designer to create the stupa garden. Lama Zopa Rinpoche advised a Japanese-style garden in the area. Now that our artist is back, he overlaid a mandala design on the garden layout. We are looking forward to breaking ground on the gardens this summer. There will be opportunities to sponsor trees, benches etc. We will keep you updated. We just received the okay from Rinpoche on a revised entrance to the shrine where the Buddha statue will be placed. While I was in Nepal, Good Virtue and I had a chance to order the pinnacle for the top of the Kadampa stupa and see a photo of the wax mold for our Buddha [...]
- Stupa Update April 2016 (4/25/2016) - Level 8 filled. On April 18, 2016, we filled Level 8 of the Mahabodhi-style stupa at Land of Medicine Buddha. Our regular stupa volunteers were joined by some of our Sunday-morning meditators to create a “bucket brigade” going from truck to ladder to ladder all the way to the top, handing items over head. Sangha members from Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s house in Aptos were a big help in actually placing the holy objects in careful order into the chamber. The items in Level 8 are similar to before: 1 set of the Kangyur (collection of Buddha’s teachings), many rolls of microfilm (of the Stainless Pinnacle mantra and the Four Dharmakaya Relic mantras), more boxes of tsa-tsas (plaster cast images of buddhas), and other printed materials. Having filled seven previous chambers, this one seemed like a breeze. Now, there is just one more level to fill to complete the central tower. [...]
- 2015 Annual Appeal (12/12/2015) - Dear Friends: As the rain falls lightly on Land of Medicine Buddha we reflect and rejoice in a wonderfully successful year. We send our most heartfelt wishes that you and your loved ones have also enjoyed blessings this year. With supporters like you we were able to achieve every goal. SEE DONATION OPTIONS AT BOTTOM OF THIS POST. Projects: Today the main structure of our Stupa is close to completion. It has been joyful work. Volunteers passed holy objects hand to hand and filled the Stupa with incense, Tibetan texts, tsa tsa’s, mantras and much more. One highlight of the year was from our inspiring young supporter Mia Stafford. Mia raised more than $12,000 alone for the Stupa project by running 108 times around our Eight Verses Pilgrimage Trail. We continue to keep our Facebook page and website updated with the latest photos and news on this project. [...]
- Microfilm going into the Stupa (8/24/2015) - We are getting over a billion mantras into the Mahabodhi Stupa at LMB by using microfilm, in addition to many cartons and rolls of mantra printed on paper. Obtaining the microfilm has become much easier recently because of the work of Tai Vautier and the FPMT Education Office. We can now order rolls of microfilm with exactly the mantras we need from a company called Linco Micro-Image Systems, in Clackamas, Oregon. Linco has set up a special website for this at www.buddhistmicrofilm.com . Mandala Magazine published a story about Tai and the microfilm evolution earlier this year (by Donna Lynn Brown): Getting as many mantras as possible on the film, while keeping them legible, was Tai’s aim. At first, using an old Ditto machine, she copied mantras from Lorne Ladner’s book, Wheel of Great Compassion: The Practice of the Prayer Wheel in Tibetan Buddhism, but shrinking made these illegible. She then got [...]
- Miles of Merit for the Stupa Project (7/8/2015) - On the evening of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s birthday, July 6, 2015, eleven-year-old Mia Stafford began her Miles of Merit marathon to raise funds to continue building the Mahabodhi Stupa at Land of Medicine Buddha. We gathered – a couple dozen of us – at the half-built stupa to recite the verses of praise to Shakyamuni Buddha and then set our motivation for the evening’s activities and for building the stupa – to create a powerful holy object to benefit sentient beings. Then we cheered Mia off on her run around the Eight Verse Loop Trail, while we headed off for a comfortable stroll. We stopped at each station of the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation, read the verse out loud together, listened to His Holiness’s commentary on it, paused to internalize the meaning and then walked meditatively to the next station. Every now and then we had [...]
- 2014 Annual Appeal (12/26/2014) - Dear Friends, First and foremost we send our warm wishes to you and your loved ones. It has been a wonderfully successful year at Land of Medicine Buddha. We exist to be of benefit to others. With supporters like you we are able to achieve every goal. This year our Stupa has finally come to be! The growth of our Stupa has been affirmation of the heart and enthusiasm of our LMB community. From January of this year when we received the permit to build – until today it has been ten months and so much has been completed! With the support of the community we have held two successful fundraisers for the Stupa. We are on track to keep pushing forward with the support of an exceptional team of volunteers and workers. Follow our progress as it is chronicled on our website and Facebook pages. See more [...]
- Help us Light the World with Wisdom & Compassion (10/31/2014) - The Buddha brought light into the world. May that light continue to shine forth from our hearts and minds. We pray that our Stupa will support all who see and/or visit. Right now we are offering supporters, old and new, an opportunity to sponsor holy images of Shakyamuni Buddha and a variety of mantras. In appreciation, we will offer lights at our Stupa on Lab.bab Du.chen and beyond. Offer Holy Mantras, Images and Lights! The base of our Stupa has been filled and sealed according to the advice of Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Geshe Ngawang Drakpa and Geshe Wangdu. We couldn’t be blessed with more wonderful guides. Our supreme advice combined with an amazing group of supporters brought us to where we are today. Holy objects arrived at the center from around the globe. You will find summary list of items that were placed inside the first level is
- First Level Filled (9/17/2014) - The first level of the stupa has been filled and sealed (see video below). The filling was completed on September 2, 2014, with the help of many hands. The concrete slab covering the whole level was done on September 16, 2014. Here is a brief list of some of the things that went in the first level: Four sets of the Kangyur (Buddha’s sutras). Other classical Buddhist scriptures and commentaries in English and Chinese. Over five billion (5 followed by 9 zeroes) mantras. Over 400,000 printed images of buddhas and holy beings. Over 3,000 tsatsas (plaster cast images) of buddhas. Many cartons of audio and video recordings of Buddhist teachings by modern-day masters. All sorts of objects symbolic of worldly resources. Nine wealth vases. All the empty spaces were packed with pine shavings to serve as incense. There is a very informative video that shows the work of two months that went into [...]
- Foundation Poured (6/16/2014) - Six cement truck loads of concrete were poured on May 28, 2014, to bring the foundation of the stupa up to ground level. Since then, more framing has been built to get ready to pour the next level. The stages of the construction will need to be paced to allow for the filling of the interior spaces. The spaces within the main tower will be filled with the sutras – the scriptures of the Buddha’s own words. We are ordering 10 sets of the Kangyur in the form of Tibetan pechas (books) to put in there. Extra space will be filled with ‘incense’ in the form of cedar shavings. See YouTube video of foundation pouring.
Rising from a verdant meadow with a Bodhi tree planted to the west, we are building a replica of the holy Mahabodhi stupa. This stupa will inspire all who see it to find refuge in the gentle path of wisdom, compassion, and peace.
As you walk the path from our Great Prayer Wheel to the upper part of our land you will encounter this venerable stupa, an icon of peace rising from an open meadow. Standing nearly forty feet tall, we are building a replica of one of the holiest Buddhist pilgrimage sites in India.
This stupa will be the central axis in a garden which will offer sites to sit and meditate, thousands of memorial stupas, gardens grown as offerings to the Buddha, places to perform prostrations, ponds with places for peaceful travelers to rest and reflect.
The purpose of this stupa is to serve as an inspiration and a blessing to all who visit it. Simply seeing, making prostrations, or circumambulating the stupa will be of benefit to all. Dedicated as a place to promote peace, we will have plaques to honor people such as His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King and others who have through their tireless effort created a more peaceful world.
“It has long been the tradition that wherever the teachings of the Buddha’s have been revered and practiced, communities of followers have built reliquary monuments known in Sanskrit as stupas and as chötens in Tibetan. And wherever they have been built, they have been regarded as sacred, for like religious images and scriptures, they represent aspects of enlightenment.”
—His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
The vision for the Land of Medicine Buddha Stupa Project emerged in the late 1990’s. Tangible progress began in 1999. In the following decade, extensive architectural planning and land analysis work was done to build the 11,000 sq. ft. building modeled after the ancient stupa in Bodhgaya.
In 2011, Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche became the central pillar to our Founders Mandala by pledging $50,000 to support the building of our stupa. In January of 2013, the Chew family from Singapore became the second members of our Founders Mandala. We are looking for a few more visionaries to join us in making the building of this great stupa manifest quickly!
After only a year of design and engineering, in January 2014 we received our permit approval to build our stupa at Land of Medicine Buddha!
The bhumi puja to bless the land was held on Friday, April 25, 2014, and on the following Monday, April 28, 2014 construction began.
Two years later, on May 22, 2016, we filled the 9th and final chamber of the central tower. Many hands helped pass along the holy objects – sutras, mantras, tsa-tsas, etc. – from the truck, up the ladders, all the way to the top. All the spaces around the holy objects were packed with fragrant wood shavings and incense.