- The Earth Sanctuary Blog - View the video to see how the Tsa Tsas were made at the first workshop. Please come to this Tsa Tsa workshop and help make the Tsa Tsas that will go into the Stupa that H.H. Jigdal Dagchen Sakya is having built near the Tara Meditation Center at Earth Sanctuary…
- A brief history of Tibetan Buddhism - Tibet has always been overshadowed by other neighbouring nations. Thus, nothing much about its culture is known. Here is a brief history abouta sacred religion called Bon, Tibet’s pre-Buddhist religion, now better know as Tibetan Buddhism…
- Padma’s blog - Music and Buddhism. I see my music as my ‘spiritual path’. Both spirituality and music are central to my life. It’s taken me quite a while to realise that this is what it’s about for me. I’ve been a Buddhist for many years and have tried a number of different ways to practice as sincerely as I can…
- Fresco - art of Tibetan Buddhism - Fresco is one of the arts of Tibetan Buddhism and as an art style most popular and unique in Taer Temple, it is one of the “Three Art Miracles” of the temple…
- New book: The Two Truths Debate - The Two Truths Debate: Tsongkhapa and Gorampa on the Middle Way by Sonam Thakchoe. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2007. I just found this new book that came out last month. It highlights many of the differences we’ve seen here in discussing Buddhist emptiness and the two truths, etc…
- The Tibetan People’s Uprising Movement - The March to Tibet is an initiative launched by five leading Tibetan non-governmental organizations in Dharamsala, India, exiled-home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government-in-exile…
- Visiting the Shambhala Mountain Center - The Shambhala Mountain Center is located in Red Feathers Colorado, just outside of Fort Collins. It’s about a two hour drive from Boulder or Denver. At the Mountain Center is ‘The Great Stuppa of Dharmakaya’…
- Safe to Travel in Chinese Tibet - Arriving at the Gandan Sumtseling Monastery, founded by the 5th Dalai Lama, is today a rather easier experience than it used to be. Tucked into a valley at one end of Zhongdian, in the north of Yunnan, in what used to be the Tibetan Province of Kham…
- Why Shadow Tibet? - Like alternate worlds in science fiction, two distinct Tibets co-exist these days. One flourishes in the light of celebrity patronage, museum openings, career opportunities, pop spirituality and New Age fashions. This is the Tibet that has captured the romantic fantasy of the West…
Ylang Ylang is produced from Cananga odorata trees grown in plantations, in Madagascar and the Comoros Islands, where they rarely reach heights above 2.5 metres. Plantation trees are cropped so they spread rather than grow tall, as the branches are brittle, and climbing them can cause damage to the tree, flowers and the picker!
Plantation trees are grown from seeds of highly productive trees, and are planted during the rainy season. They have a long tap-root, which can be easily damaged through transplanting, so great care is taken to the plant the trees when they are about 80 cm tall, in the place where they are intended to grow. Ylang Ylang trees do not reach maturity until they are 4-5 years, and are pruned every 2 months for the rest of their life cycle, which can be up to 70 years of age.
The first flowers appear after 2 years. The flowers are initially white, and change to yellow as they mature. A fully mature flower has two red spots on the inside of the flower, an indication that the flower is ready to be picked.
The flowers have six long slender petals, which droop from a stem protecting their red centers. They extend along the branches in equal strands of 2 to 20 buds. The large leaves hang suspended from the branch below them. A fully mature tree produces from 5-100 kg of flowers every year depending on conditions, but the amount of oil extracted decreases as the tree gets older.
The flowers have to be hand picked, as they damage easily and only mature flowers produce oil. The flowers are hand picked early in the morning and brought directly to the still before 10am.
Flower picking occurs all year round, however higher yields are usually obtained from May to July and November to December. The annual rainfall needs to be a minimum of 3000 mm, otherwise the amount of oil produced by each flower drops significantly.
According to Ayurveda, Ylang Ylang is relaxing to the nervous system, resulting in the feeling of joy, it could well ease the feeling of anger and anxiety.
In aromatherapy, Ylang Ylang is believed to relieve high blood pressure, normalize sebum secretion for skin problems, and is considered to be an aphrodisiac.
The ancient history of aromatherapy is very interesting. Contrary to popular conception, aromatherapy is not a modern concept; rather, it is just that the term has only recently been formed in the 20th century, though the history of aromatherapy in fact, goes way back in time.
According to ancient history of aromatherapy, it was the Chinese who first began using aromatic plants because of the ability of essential oils to heal the body. In fact, the Chinese also believed that this could be achieved by burning incense which in turn would create a more harmonious atmosphere and which would also create a relaxation in the body. Later, the history of aromatherapy shows that the Egyptians pioneered the invention of techniques that allowed for the distillation of essential oils which could now be extracted even though the methods of distillation being used were still rather crude.
Some of the ancient Egyptian tombs which have been opened in modern times even have given off faint scents of herbs and revealed faint traces of herbs which go to show that the Egyptians indeed were among the first to make use of aromatherapy, and although it was rather crudely done, this has nevertheless been recorded in the continuing history of aromatherapy. In fact, the Egyptians combined essential oils with infused oils and used such combinations for cosmetics as well as for medicinal purposes. What’s more, the history of aromatherapy as ascribed to the Egyptians dates back as many as five thousand years back and even the term perfume can be attributed to the Egyptians.
Even the Greeks were not unaffected by aromatherapy and in fact, the history of aromatherapy also records them as being users of essential oils which they used for preserving foods, and also for medicinal purposes and it even was part of their religion as well as was used for cooking. Actually, ideas derived from aromatherapy were used by Greeks in designing as well as laying out their towns and this was evident from the fact that they left open spaces especially to allow for burning herbs which would ensure that the air remained free from all manner of germs.
In fact, the Greeks also learnt much about aromatherapy from the Egyptians, especially around the period 500 B.C. when they set up medical schools on what was known as the Island of Cos, which school gave us Hippocrates, and this too is an important period in the history of aromatherapy.
Much later, the history of aromatherapy recorded how distillation techniques came to be improved by Persians and more particularly the Persian physician called Avicenna. Later, aromatic herbs came to be used during the infamous Bubonic Plague to disinfect the polluted air. Actually, the history of aromatherapy took another important turn in which aromatherapy now began to be linked to the health benefits of using essential oils, and this link has not been disproved even in our modern times.
Today, the modern history of aromatherapy shows that aromatherapy is mostly being used in the beauty industry and health industry. A lot of aromatherapy products are provided by marketer in these huge potential market, such as aromatherapy skin care and aromatherapy body lotion. Now, everyone can enjoy the more benefits of aromatherapy.
Simhamukha (Sanskrit) or Senge Dongma (Tibetan) usually is translated into English as Lion-Faced Dakini.
This dakini and female tantric Buddha is regarded as one of the principal wrathful manifestations of Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche). As such, she is connected with many ceremonies of the Dzogchen tradition.
Considered to be the secret form of Vajrayogini, Lion-faced Dakini also has a realtionship to Troma and the practice of chöd. She is appropriate for clearing obstacles of the most pervasive and malignant kind, and cutting through the “three poisons” of mind. This ancient practice has been important in Tibetan Buddhism since the time of Guru Rinpoche. PeGyal Lingpa recieved this revelation directly from Padmasambhava, appearing in a red-black form, instead of the more common dark blue manifestation. This indicates that this is the inner form of the yidam, allied to the Pema family.
Sengdongma is particularly focused on pacifying the destructive inlufence of the Mamos, the forces of distrubed “yin” or feminine demonic energies. The wanton destruction of the environment and degredation of human culture greatly stirs up and enrages these elemental force. They retaliate with disease, epidemics, weather disturbances and calamaties on a major scale. This practice is one of the great antidotes for this critical time of the “five degenerations.”
As wrathful dakini, she is also one of the Phramenma, a group of female deities from the Bardo Thödol, or ‘Tibetan Book of the Dead’.
MCLEOD GANJ, India, 13 October 2008 — 18-year-old Sonam Choedon was crowned the new Miss Tibet last night at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts in McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala, India.
Former Miss Tibet Tenzin Dolma passed on the crown to the new Miss Tibet amid fireworks, showers of confetti, and a huge applauding crowd.
Choedon was awarded 100,000 rupees to further her education and skills.
“Miss Tibet is a great platform to talk about Tibet. I will do my best to do that,” says Choedon moments after crowning.
Jamyang Chentso, the only other contestant, was the runner-up, and was presented with a 50,000-rupee cheque.
Dr Rashmi Ramoul, a lecturer at the Government College for Teachers’ Education, and Natasha Mendes from Brasil, a belly-dance teacher, adjudged the winner.
To a judge’s query in the interview round about the relevance of Gandhi to the Tibetan people, Choedon said, “Gandhi is the most important freedom fighter of India. He fought with non-violence. His Holiness the Dalai Lama is following his path and pursuing the Middle-way approach to resolve the Tibetan issue.”
However, she said that she has not studied about Gandhi in Tibet as it is not taught in schools. “I am speaking from the brief knowledge I have gained and heard after coming into exile.”
Sonam Choedon was born in 1990 in Lithang, Kham, eastern Tibet. She is a student, has studied up to class 8 in Tibet. She is fluent in Chinese as well as Tibetan.
She came into exile in India in June 2008 in search of better opportunities for education. Her hobbies include dancing, reading and studying languages.
In the future she would like to become a dance teacher and also work on languages. She would also like to use her life and strength to help others in need as people have done for her when she first arrived in India.
There is a shortage of funds to cover the cost of the pageant and the prize money to the winner and runner-up. If you would like to contribute, you may donate through the PayPal button in the right column or contact us for more information.
Miss Tibet 2009 will be held in May-June 2009 and the application will be up on this site at the beginning of December.