What:Sangye Menlha is the common name of Bhaisajyaguru, also known as the Master of Healing or the Buddha of healing.
Why:The veneration of Medicine Buddha (Sangye Menlha in Tibetan) is considered a powerful method not only for healing and increasing healing powers, but also for overcoming the inner sickness of attachment, hatred, and ignorance.
Benefits:It is believed that meditating on the Medicine Buddha can help decrease physical/mental illness and suffering.
Day 3, 25/09/10 - Sangye Menlha, Glastonbury
I awoke to a blue sky morning; Somerton has a really pleasant Oldie feel about it but I’m nagged by my waking dreams. Lying here I feel like I’ve been transformed into another time, long ago; I’m torn between the here & now and an overwhelming sense that I’m slipping between world’s.
Practice and teaching was intense today; chanting, mudras & visualisations were fine when performed in isolation. However, to invoke the Sangye Menlha each of these elements has to be combined using the ancient language of Zhang Zung. Each time the chant began I had a moment of CRAFT (can’t remember a f*ckin thing); some things never change and multi-tasking has never been an innate strength of mine.
The atmospheric pressure in the Gompa was ramping up. The group formed a large circle with the Rinpoche at the top. Four women who had nominated themselves to receive healing sat in the middle; the energy was directed towards them joining throat chakras.
A woman to the far right of me kept wailing like a siren, Wuthering Heights echoed in my head, at times I had to double take to make sure Kate Bush wasn’t in the room. With a Shamanic tune she kept convulsing; throughout I was desperately trying to maintain my own focus but often found myself too easily distracted.
During lunch earlier Suzy had commented, ‘have you heard and seen that woman, just imagine what she’s like having an orgasm’. Unfortunately that thought has now stuck. I open an eye to glance at the source of the erratic noise, with her mouth open and contorted face I have to pinch myself as a reality check.
The atmosphere in the room is exceptionally dense and stuffy; I look across the circle, Karen is holding her head. Everyone is facing down with furrowed brows; my head is heavy with the pressure.
After the session Karen, Suzy, Rowena, Bronia & me head over to Glastonbury to climb up to the Tor. After the dense heady atmosphere of the Gompa the cool evening air against a beautiful blue sky is warmly welcomed. Below us a hot air balloon gently hums across the Somerset Levels.
Rinpoche is already at the top, laughing from the pit of his stomach, his deep booming laugh changes to a childlike giggle; loud and excitable. His oval exterior, frown less brow and broad smile is inviting, captivating but it’s also obscurely pacifying.
Rinpoche wants a photo of himself with a sheep and hurries off to try, ‘they keep running away’.
‘Walk backwards you must – no eye contact’ even I’m starting to sound like Yoda. He looks at the sheep and with a child-like, squeaky voice says, ‘really!?’ He looks at the steepness of the Tor hill and looks back at me, a smile erupts and once again his booming laughter fills the air.
We continue down from the Tor, tasting some of the red and white water from besides the Chalice well. The red water has an overpowering taste of iron, rusty nails and as we’re sampling it a car drives past, someone shouts from the window. Suzy comments about the silence being spoilt by f*ckin Neds (non-educated delinquents); ha but that was no Ned that was Rinpoche!
The food in Glastonbury was lovely, the atmosphere was relaxed and jovial, the conversation never once dried up. We all talked and talked, laughed and laughed. In some respects it feels like I’ve been here for months. It’s all a bit like an aerobics class; the co-ordination between mantra, mudra, language and visualisation is all pretty consuming; I’m always feeling like I’m about two moves behind.