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Photographer's Note

While thousands were pressing to get a glimpse of His Holiness, the Karmapa Lama, I came across him by chance, just a few feet away and was able to get the picture. I then reverenced him and was rewarded by a lovely smile and a red chord, which I wear around my wrist .This, is the 17th Karmapa Lama, Trinlay Thaya Dorje. The first Karmapa was the first incarnate lama in Tibetan history and is the third in rank after the Dali Lama. Trinlay Thaya Dorje, was recognized as the 17th Karmapa by Sharma Ripoche, the administrator of the will of the 16th Karmapa lama and the, then, highest ranking lama of the Dharma Kigyu (or Black hat) school of Tibetan Buddhism. However another claimant to the title was put forward in Chinese controlled Tibet. He was selected by a lower ranking lama, with no authority to do so, other than a letter that he claims was given him by the 16th Karmapa. However, he has consistently refused to present the alleged letter for examination. Ugyen Trinley Dorge was controlled and supported by the communist government of China. However, with his sponsor Situ Dorge, he later escaped from the Chinese and now resides in the West. He is recognized by the Dali Lama, but the majority of the Black hat sect recognizes this lama Trinlay Thaya Dorje. The courts of Sikim and India have upheld his claim and he controls the seat of the Karmapa, Rumtek Monastery in Sikim and the 648 monasteries of this sect in 51 countries. There was a rift between the Dali Lama and the Black hat school, during the life of the 16th Karmapa. It was alleged that the Dalai Lama, who traditionally had only political authority over the other two sects, tried to take control of the three sects after his exile and that this was resisted by the 16th Karmapa. Therefore, the rift between the Dali Lama and the Karma Kiygu School has only deepened. However, in Tibetan history, it is not unknown for two reincarnations to appear for the same Lama and a minority of Tibetan Lamas recognizes both claimants as the legitimate incarnations of the Karmapa.This is a contentios issue about which other good people may have other views. I am grateful to Joan Chadwick [greentara) for correcting errors in my original note.

avallaunius, snunney, BennyV, adores, jhm, papagolf21, ribeiroantonio has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by kevin o'sheehan (kevinos) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1023 W: 173 N: 1802] (7517)
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