Date & Time Details: Wednesday, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm PDT

Location: In-person in the Gompa

Address: 5800 Prescott Road, Soquel, CA, USA

Contact: Isabella Wesner
[email protected]

Email us about program

Chokhor Duchen 16 Arhats Puja

July 10, 2024

Wednesday, July 10

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

In-Person only in the Gompa

Chokhor Duchen, one of the four annual holy days of Guru Shakyamuni Buddha, takes place this year on July 10. On these holy days, the power of any meritorious action is multiplied by 100 million, as taught in the Vinaya text Treasure of Quotations and Logic.

Known in English as “Turning the Wheel of Dharma,” Chokhor Duchen commemorates the anniversary of Guru Shakyamuni Buddha’s first teaching. It is said that for seven weeks after his enlightenment, the Buddha did not teach. Afterward, Indra and Brahma offered a Dharmachakra and a conch shell and requested Guru Shakyamuni Buddha to teach. Accepting, Guru Shakyamuni Buddha turned the wheel of Dharma for the first time at Sarnath by teaching the four noble truths.


Chokhor Duchen is also the day on which FPMT celebrates International Sangha Day! If you’d like to learn more about the monks and nuns in FPMT you can use this link.


The 16 Arhats Puja

The Sixteen Arhats puja is a powerful purification practice. Buddha Shakyamuni personally selected the Sixteen Arhats from amongst his disciples and requested them to protect the Dharma. At the time of the parinirvana, they vowed to remain in the world and maintain the Dharma until the time of the future Buddha Maitreya.

Benefits of making offerings and prayers to the Sixteen Arhats include:

  • All the victorious ones (buddhas) are pleased.
  • Anyone who correctly practices it will have no obstacles.
  • One will be able to abide in pure morality.
  • It increases one’s scriptural understanding and realization.
  • One will have perfect inner and outer conditions to practice Dharma.
  • One will not be overwhelmed by untimely death and will have a long life.
  • The community of sangha will be increased.
  • The study and practice of the Tripitaka (Three Baskets) will increase.

According to Lama Zopa Rinpoche, there are infinite benefits one will enjoy until enlightenment is achieved.

Images of the Statues Available to Download and Print

Lama Zopa Rinpoche requested the statues of the 16 Arhats living at Nalanda Monastery be photographed so the images could be available to others. A collection of professionally produced images of the statues, complete with beautiful backgrounds, is now available for download in the FPMT Foundation Store.


You can read more about this project in an article attached to this link.


Photo Credit: Darby Johnson